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Old 06-22-2006, 07:09 AM   #1
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Excluding the additional (or less) cost factor, have any of you had "I shoulda .." thoughts on the length of your coach? You bought a 34 now you wish it was a 36 or even longer? Or, you bought a 36 and wish it was a 40? Or, you bought a 40 and now wish it were shorter? Perhaps you could have done without that third or fourth slider? Or now you wish you had that fourth living room slide?


2001 Alpine 36 FDDS 350 SeaGreen/Mendocino 74263
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Old 06-22-2006, 07:09 AM   #2
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Excluding the additional (or less) cost factor, have any of you had "I shoulda .." thoughts on the length of your coach? You bought a 34 now you wish it was a 36 or even longer? Or, you bought a 36 and wish it was a 40? Or, you bought a 40 and now wish it were shorter? Perhaps you could have done without that third or fourth slider? Or now you wish you had that fourth living room slide?


2001 Alpine 36 FDDS 350 SeaGreen/Mendocino 74263
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Old 06-22-2006, 07:53 AM   #3
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I have 36 mid door, single slide and maybe would like a 40 only because I could probably find room for a dishwasher AND a washer/dryer; other than that, it's quite comfortable. We've been on the road for 8 months now and haven't run screaming to the dealer for a bigger rig yet!

As for slides, most of the ones with the bedroom slide require that you climb up over the engine on the side furtest from the door, and I don't like that, so we've avoided bedroom slides; although the new ones may be better.
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1998 36' MDSS
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Old 06-22-2006, 10:08 AM   #4
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Linda - It is for the very reason you mentioned we bought a closet slide rather than a bed slide. Each have their benefits but with the closet slide no one has to step up and bang their head on the ceiling when getting into/out of bed.
'01 Alpine 36 FDDS
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Old 06-22-2006, 10:20 AM   #5
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Norm - I would be happy with no slides but SWMBO (she who must be obeyed) had to have at least one. We got two. We were also looking at a Camelot at the time with 4 slides (SWMBO really liked that). Price was a little better on the Alpine so we got it. Personally, if it weren't for resale issues, it wouldn't be worth the extra aggrivation a slide causes, for me to consider it. Length raises maneuverability issues. Do you plan on staying in areas where you don't need to get into tight places? The 32' Safari I had before the Alpine was much more maneuverable and I could go about anywhere. Some restrictions with the Alpine though.
'01 Alpine 36 FDDS
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Old 06-22-2006, 01:46 PM   #6
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We have a 34' double slide with a front door. For the two of us at the moment we see no reason for a larger motorhome. We had a 96 Monaco Signature 40'which was quite lovely but truly,overall living space with no slides, the 34' Alpine seems roomier w/ the two slides. We took into consideration manuverability and the 34' is terrific. It does not limit campgrounds as the 40 footer did. With slides on one side that also makes life easier in many campgrounds as they do not have the room to put slides out in both directions. We do not step up into anything so that is something we are not familiar with. We looked at the 36' and could not find any aprrecaible difference as far as our living space. We have a washer/dryer combo which works quite well. We do not entertain a great deal but we still have more than enough room to do that comfortably. If and when we decide to go at it full-time we might eventually consider a larger coach. If Alpine creates an excellent Apex we would consider it, otherwise I will go with a Bluebird.
Ted & Carol Ulmer
2005 Alpine 34', 34FDDS
2006 PT Turbo pusher
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Old 06-22-2006, 03:05 PM   #7
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We have a 2006 34 footer. The wheelbase is about 2 feet shorter than on the 36 ft Alpine. We chose that length because we travel a lot of narrow roads such as Tioga Pass and Hwy 1 and use a lot of public campgrounds. So far we are very happy with our 34's performance and interior space. Of course our last coach was a 29ft Trek so right now we are in hog heavin.
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Old 06-22-2006, 06:17 PM   #8
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We have a 36 with one slide. We looked at the 34 with 3 slides and I thought it was very roomy. With the 400 ISL and the Peak chassis you certainly would be able to load it up. I miss not being able to get into some of the state campgrounds, but Yosemite, Tioga Pass, and Hwy 12 in Utah were no problem with the 36 foots 252 wheelbase. We have friends with a 36 who sneak it into 35 foot or less campgrounds.
Tom, Patty, Hannah "The Big Dog" and Abby Kat, Indianapolis, Indiana 2000 36' FDS 72232 Our Photos
We live out in our old van. Travel all across this land. Drive until the city lights dissolve into a country sky, me and you - hand in hand.
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Old 06-22-2006, 06:51 PM   #9
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We selected the 36 foot (which is really 37), and it has turned out to be a good decision for us. There have been many public campgrounds where we had just enough space to park our toad in front of our motorhome (sideways sometimes). If we'd had a 40 footer, the toad would have had to be moved to overflow parking - sometimes very far away!

I'd love to be under 35 feet, but as fulltimers, that linen closet space and the extra basement space (plus larger kitchen) has been really critical!!!

I agonized over the length decision. Seems we got it right.

If we didn't stay in state/public parks, we would definitely go with a 38 or 40 footer (better bedroom layout). But public campground parking is what got us into RVing in the first place and that's what we really like to do!

BTW - the other agonizing decision was whether to get the passenger slide in the living area - it's so much roomier with that slide. But we opted for the overhead cabinet storage instead, and I think that was the right tradeoff. And yes - we have been at least one place where where we only had room for slides on one side!

36ft 2006 Alpine Coach FDDS
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Old 06-29-2006, 06:38 AM   #10
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We spent considerable time debating our desired length/model before we purchased our 36 FDDS. After 4 years fulltiming, we are very happy with our choice. The 34 was a little small for us, particularly with the reduced counter space/storage in the kitchen, and the 40 we figured was too big to get into many state/public campgrounds. And, as others have mentioned, we didn't like the step up to get into the bed on one side. Actually, I didn't mind it at all, but then it wasn't on my side. We've occasionally talked about someday getting a 40, but our 36 isn't even near full (inside or below), and the main space gain seems to be in the bath/bedroom area where we don't need it, rather than in the living area.

We have stayed at many campgrounds (even private ones) where we just squeezed in, parking the car sideways in front. Some of those places have been among our most beautiful camping locations in the 4 year period.

There is almost no road we can't go on. In fact, I try to keep people from telling Neal how narrow or twisty-turny a road is, as it only serves to challenge the little boy race car driver part of him that seems to lurk in many men. Fortunately, he bows to my judgement re: those few mountain passes we don't want to do. We avoid interstates and busy highways whenever possible, as that's not where you see the America we wanted to see fulltiming.

Another issue we consider as fulltimers is the considerable weight of the slides. We prefer to keep our overall weight as low as possible, using it for contents vs slide mechanisms. Maybe we're too conservative, especially given today's equipment, but we figure less weight and less slide cutouts have at least some impact on overall safety. To date, there isn't much data to support that, but it seems intuitively logical to us. Plus, less slides definately equal less opportunity for slide leaks (both of water and hydraulic fluid), a problem many of us have experienced.

Other things we've considered regarding more slides: less outdoor living space on passenger side when you're in small-average size campsites, main awning issues, more difficulty getting into the non-APEX bays under the slide, and, on the more important side , more windows and window tracks to keep clean, and the added cost of buying a 2nd remote control because you're now too far away to pass it. Ha, like you could get a man to pass it anyway!

That said, the interior living space of the quad slides is certainly impressive, all of the above issues (if you even see them as such) can be overcome one way or another if you choose, and it's no wonder so many triples/quads are being sold.

Bottom line, length & number of slides is a very personal decision, dependent on your travel and camping preferances.

BTW, we were recently at Guaranty in Junction City, where Jeff Lake told us WRV will introduce the Alpine (not sure if it will be "Limited") SE model in August. Didn't get all the details, but it will be priced between the Limited and the APEX and will have the SMART BED bays. (Don't drool, Wayne! LOL!)

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Old 06-29-2006, 07:39 PM   #11
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As another former Safari Trek owner, we opted for the more compact 34FDDS.

In our case, the choice of length and slides considered:

--Use, in our case, weekends & vacations. If we snowbirded or full-timed, more would be desireable.

--Destinations, in our case, variety from full service RV parks to State parks and twisty roads, calling for shorter length and better turning radius.

--Desire for an un-obstructed patio while parked, knocking out a Passenger side LR slide.

--Desire for an un-obstructed and pleasant slides-in traveling floorplan, also knocking out the Pass/LR slide and favoring a short Driver side slide (18").

--Personal dimensions, the bedroom and bathroom are pretty tight. If either of us become much larger, it won't be very comfortable.

--Occupancy, we pretty much decided this was our personal getaway vehicle and did not favor additional occupancy features. We love our kids and grand-kids, but ...

We're still happy with our choice, but I do sometimes wonder if the 36MDDS would have fit the bill. It was on our short list, but a good deal came up on the 34FDDS.

And, we always thought our Trek floorplan was great. The 34FDDS has a very similar layout.

And finally, I chose the chassis first this time around. Floorplans and slides were a second consideration. The chassis choice has never been regretted. I wanted a "driver's coach".
2004 Alpine 34 FDDS
Anaheim Hills, CA
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Old 07-14-2006, 05:39 PM   #12
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And now for the 40' side of the house. We bought an Apex which has four slides, w/d, dishwasher and electronics that blow me away. We love it. With the camp ground memberships we have the length has not been a problem. We have to date not been able to fit in a spot. It has been close sometimes but we've made it.
It depends on the kind of camping a person wants to do. We like to be comfortable. It is a personal choice for sure.
Apex 1
Lyle & Cathy Fuller
06 Apex 40FDQS
Datastorm #3481
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Old 07-15-2006, 02:51 AM   #13
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Reply </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
I agree with TedIII, we had a 40'
1990 Winnebago, great coach, very comfortable,
but a <span class="ev_code_RED">BEAR</span>to manuver!

We were looking for a 36 footer when we saw the
GulfStream SunVoyager. 102" wide, 33'long,
w/2 slides, 1 year old, 3000miles and not a
mark on any wall or surface, carpet like new,
exterior excellent, and the price was right ... sooooo ..... we bought!

After having it 1 year plus, and after going
to the RV Show in Tampa, and after looking at
the new models ...(DROOL,DROOL) ... maybe in a
Year or two, right now it fits us fine and it
is a pleasure to drive.

"Ride it like a Ford"

http://i105.photobucket.com/albums/m202/Retird2Golf/GIFS/OldFord2.gif<a <a href="http://plugin.smileycentral.com/http%253A%252F%252Fwww
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