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Old 04-24-2014, 07:53 PM   #1
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Questions on 2005 Alpine 40' FDTS

We are looking at purchasing a 2005 Alpine 40FDTS. It has 56k miles and they are asking $80k.
We are completely new to the Class A world, coming from towing a very light trailer (rpod) with our minivan. Now we hope to upgrade and tow the minivan with the Class A.
We have been to see the coach multiple times and gone over it inside and out. There are minor cosmetic things (a mirror missing, a sticky cabinet slide, etc).

There is a section of the floor, just forward of the toilet area where the tile is broken (about 6-8 tiles worth). It feels like if you were to put all of your weight on it you would fall through the floor. We looked underneath it and there are no signs of anything from above, zero signs that any water has entered the compartment below the broken area. It really seems like something just broke the tile and the sub floor beneath it. Has anyone had anything like this happen in the past? Is it just a broken piece of plywood that needs to be replaced (plus tile?)

Also, any thoughts on this coach vs other options in our price range (under 85k). We really want to skip the gas coach altogether and move to the diesel since I know that is where we will end up eventually (but several friends have gas and are happy). We travel with four dogs, no kids, and at least one of us will be semi-full time in the winters in Florida (November thru March). The rest of the year we live near Chicago where the summers are a little more bearable.

Interested in any thoughts anyone has:
Is this a good price? Is this a reliable coach? Should we be concerned about anything in particular? Should we buy into one of the extended warranties available? Anyone traveling in a similar coach with dogs? Any advice in general is very much appreciated. This is a big decision for us and we want to make sure we are getting the best coach for our dollar.
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Old 04-24-2014, 09:21 PM   #2
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I am sure some 05 owners will jump in and give you some input. You can also do a search command on this forum and find out more about 05s. Specific issues about the 05 include "wrong" bolt size used in frame/rear suspension link[first 40 or so 05s made]; Onan inverter issues; probable radiator issues [link to many brands in that era]; steering bracket upgrade; and perhaps a few more. The radiator is the only one that is pricy to address; all are fixable. Generally speaking, Alpine owners are some of the most satisfied owners on the road and we have a great forum/owner network. Check Blue Book on price, individual coaches will vary based on condition. It's pretty hard to find a better brand but you can easily find some worse ones....good luck
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Old 04-25-2014, 09:09 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Scout View Post
I am sure some 05 owners will jump in and give you some input. You can also do a search command on this forum and find out more about 05s. Specific issues about the 05 include "wrong" bolt size used in frame/rear suspension link[first 40 or so 05s made]; Onan inverter issues; probable radiator issues [link to many brands in that era]; steering bracket upgrade; and perhaps a few more. The radiator is the only one that is pricy to address; all are fixable. Generally speaking, Alpine owners are some of the most satisfied owners on the road and we have a great forum/owner network. Check Blue Book on price, individual coaches will vary based on condition. It's pretty hard to find a better brand but you can easily find some worse ones....good luck
Thank you! This was the type of response I was hoping to hear. We are so new to this side of RV'ing and I'm a bit paranoid (my husband not so much). Your words are very much appreciated!
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Old 04-26-2014, 12:29 AM   #4
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We bought our 05 36'FDDS new from the factory in Feb. 05. The two pricy items we have had are radiator replacement $5500 and bedroom slide hydraulic hose replacement. Also the steering box reinforcement should be checked out. Other than that just minor stuff.
Remember, just the annual service on these machine is quite hefty. As Emike says, a big sweaty wad of money is necessary to own these ultimate DIY machines.
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Old 04-26-2014, 12:55 AM   #5
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Questions on 2005 Alpine 40' FDTS

We have a 05 38' FDTS, although we have had issues I would not have had another manufacturer. We bought it new in June of '06. We have replaced the inverter/charger, the front AC and the shocks (Koni's). If you can get it, Extra Ride is one of the better extended warranty companies. Our maintenance shop tells me they are great to deal with. Review the threads here and you will come across most of the issues (many were mentioned above) that will pop up, if you have something not already discussed post a thread and someone will have an answer.

We have the residential refrigerator which had a problem with the modified sine wave inverter from Onan, however there is a mod for the refer logic board that fixed it, when we replaced the inverter we got the Xantrax unit that is true sine and no more problems. We installed a heat pump when the AC went (the roof top cover had blown off after Camping World had serviced the unit and when it rained before I could get a replacement it rusted and seized up), we have been happy with that mod. We also installed the Vagabond water system and a power monitor, never can be too careful, some of the campgrounds are old.

I have a laptop I run the Silverleaf engine monitor on as well as Delorme Street Atlas. It sits up on the dash so we have big picture GPS and know what the engine is doing. I also run Smart Tire to monitor all 10 wheels and have a Even Brake system on the Toad (a 2008 Saturn).

Let me know if you have any questions, we currently live on Cape Cod, are heading to Alaska at the end of May. We expect to make the FMCA rally in Redmond in August and hope to make a day or 2 of the prerally in Portland, but we will just be finishing the Alaska leg of our trip so it most likely will be only a day at Portland, if we make it at all.
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Old 04-26-2014, 01:49 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by DrDaveMA View Post

I have a laptop I run the Silverleaf engine monitor on as well as Delorme Street Atlas. It sits up on the dash so we have big picture GPS and know what the engine is doing. I also run Smart Tire to monitor all 10 wheels and have a Even Brake system on the Toad (a 2008 Saturn).
Wow, thanks for all of the info. My husband had a bluetooth setup running to monitor our tow vehicle (engine temp, etc) when we were towing the trailer, he's very much into technology so I am certain this is something he will be doing. Sending him the link here now
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