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Old 12-31-2014, 01:20 PM   #1
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RED Question

We looked at a used 2014 RED 33 and a used 2013 Phaeton 36 at a local dealer over the weekend. We were leaning towards the Phaeton but it appears to have been neglected and have crossed it off our list. Many things we can see makes us wonder about what we canít see. The RED looks almost new but we are concerned about the short wheelbase and how it will handle crosswinds, etc. I did a search and found a topic addressing modifications of a RED 36 which seems to solve the handling concerns but Iím not sure if these changes would have the same desired effect on the 33 with a much shorter wheelbase. We have an Allegro 32LA with a 228 inch wheelbase and donít want to jump from the frying pan into the fire. However, the wife really likes the 33 and we all know what that means.
So, two questions. If after driving it awhile we decide to make the mods needed to improve the handling do you think it would be an improvement over our current gas 32LA, especially with crosswinds? Second, Iíve tried to find a post I recall about the rear axle being underrated and needing to be replaced but havenít found it. Did Tiffin upgrade the rear axle on the RED and if so when. If this one needs the upgrade do you think Tiffin will cover the cost?
Many thanks,
Robert
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Old 12-31-2014, 02:14 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RJEV View Post
So, two questions. If after driving it awhile we decide to make the mods needed to improve the handling do you think it would be an improvement over our current gas 32LA, especially with crosswinds?
I think only you could determine if it was an improvement over your present RV.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RJEV View Post
Second, I’ve tried to find a post I recall about the rear axle being underrated and needing to be replaced but haven’t found it. Did Tiffin upgrade the rear axle on the RED and if so when. If this one needs the upgrade do you think Tiffin will cover the cost?
Many thanks,
Robert
I'm sure, Tiffin being such a builder of such high quality RVs, would be HAPPY to pay to upgrade a (now) 2 year old, second owner RV they built. That's why their Alabama site has over 100 parking sites for repairs and dozens of service bays. (This is sarcastic humor - - not to be believed)
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Old 12-31-2014, 06:33 PM   #3
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Every option has a trade off. It's pretty well known that the shorter diesels will be wind blown around a little more than the heavier, longer wheel based motorhomes.

The trade offs are easier maneuverability in most all other conditions, better gas milage (with the slightly smaller engine,) and easier parking with less space needed.

We just arrived home from a very windy drive home from a northern storm in California and was a cautious drive with some really bad gusts over 40mph winds. I guess people in California are used to wind, we go over the windy Gorman area all the time. Our 33aa stood up well, even with solar panels on, which was our big worry.

Let me tell you, there were a lot of white knuckles going on with all campers last night! So it's hard to say if a longer wheel base would have handled any better. Doubting it! Weight distribution has a lot to do with wind handling. So you can't judge one persons opinion. People who aren't very experienced with high winds may misjudge.

No axle problems as far as the newer 33aa, as far as I have ever read. Do you have any facts about the axle problem? I'd love to read about it. Our 2015 was 16th off the production line, about 5 months back.

We all worry about changes we may have missed because of RV age, etc. always something going on. As far as we know the 14s and 15s are pretty much debugged. hope you are having fun soon!

I forgot to ask, did you have wind problems with the 32la? I haven't seen that problem here in the forum. We almost bought a 32sa, nice gas rig. If you are going to do a lot of long term camping, you might consider a 36. Is there a reason why you want 35.3 length? Tell your wife I love the 33aa floor plan also
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Old 12-31-2014, 08:16 PM   #4
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Check out the Tiffin forum. Search RED axle problems. Lots of info.
No problems on 32LA after Koni shocks, rear track bar and front stableizer.
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Old 01-01-2015, 08:28 AM   #5
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I hang out on the Tiffin RV Network.com website a lot. There are suprisingly few posts about the 33AA, whether it be handling or the rear axle issue. BTW, there is no rear axle problem, it was an issue of rear axle rating. The rear axle rating of any diesel pusher can be changed by modifying the brake cans and/or shocks to match the axle loading.

I would still go for the Phaeton, but since they can't provide service records, insist that the coach be taken to Freightliner or Cummins for a full inspection and service with all fluids and filters changed.
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Old 01-01-2015, 05:09 PM   #6
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Thnx RJEV, I did find a few posts so I see why you'd be worried. Also saw your post there which had some good info on it. We looked at our gvwf gvwr rating, the front being 12,000 lb, the rear axle rated for 19,000lbs. So we are assuming the modifications were done on the2015s. Can't find any info on the shocks and brake cans. Check on the entry door of the 14. Best bet, call Tiffin, they have really decent
info resources.
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Old 01-01-2015, 05:20 PM   #7
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Previous irv2 thread on this subject

33AA Weights
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Old 01-01-2015, 05:48 PM   #8
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Peace Owl,
My understanding is the 2015 come with the 19500 axle. Although someone told me with the parts Tiffin installed, his rear axle is now rated at 20,000. Not sure that's correct. Seems like most 33AA owners are not having any more cross wind problems than normal. We are feeling much better about it. Thanks.
Robert.
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Old 01-01-2015, 06:56 PM   #9
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And thnx for the link to irv2 post, okgc. Good info for communicating to Tiffin.
I am curious as well, Robert, about the differences. We really have been in a smaller RV until October of this year, so I don't have much experience with a longer RV to compare handling. But it does make sense that a heavy tail with a much lighter front end could be a problem in the wind. Thnx for the heads up, and you may have a case for Tiffin to remediate for you. Now I have to check out ours too!
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Old 01-09-2015, 09:25 AM   #10
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Don't buy what you think you need. Buy more than you "think" you need. There is a high probability that you will eventually want more and decide to buy up, so might as well be ahead of the game.

Whatever you buy, there will always be better performing options. More than likely a tag axel will out perform a rig without one.

However, once you have an issue in your mind, like a concern about wind performance, no matter what you do you may always resent your decision not to buy the other rig. You will be looking for an excuse to be unhappy...just human nature.

On the other hand if you discover an issue after you purchase, more than likely you can fix it or compromise.
Except as to gas vs diesel, and length, for example.

Those issues are not resolvable in any got it right sense. Just a weighing of compromises. And it isn't a one way street. Some diesel go to gas, and some 40 ft have gone to 24 ft. Needs and usage simply changed.

It really is easy. Obviously the 36 footer is within your budget, so buy it. It probably is useful to spend a significant time exploring these issues, but my guess is that either way you will end up at the same place. If you buy the shorter, you will be looking to assess for months, whether or not you made the right decision. With the 36 you will just get on with it.

If money is an issue, just buy an older model.
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