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Old 06-19-2018, 07:26 PM   #1
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Bounder for female solo traveler?

I am considering purchasing a motorhome. I have done extensive camping, but never alone. I see so many boulders on the road and am thinking I should be able to find. Good used one for 30k. Would love to hear the pros and cons on this unit. Any years I should look for or avoid? Anything I should look for specific to this unit on inspection? Any insights would be appreciated, thank you!
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Old 06-19-2018, 11:06 PM   #2
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Hello,
If this is going to be your first experience with a motorhome, and you are a solo traveller, my suggestion would be to take a serious look at just how large a unit you feel you will need to be comfortable.
Class "A's" start around 30' and go up to 45'.
Do you need a washer/ dryer, an additional 1/2 bath, a king size bed etc.
In the gas RV market, you will find many different makes, models and floor plans.
Finding the perfect floor plan is like buying a house.
You will know it right away if it's right for you.
If it doesn't feel right, you will probably never be happy with it.
Like any vehicle, some brands are more reputable and reliable than others.
Ask sellers to provide you with a record of service history, and having an inspection by a reputable RV mechanic, or possibly another knowledgable RV'er could save you a lot of unwanted headaches.
I have found this forum to be a very good source for information.
Check out specific make forums eg. Fleetwood Bounder.
Read the comments from owners.
I wish you all the best in your search, and when you find something of interest, come back and ask questions on the forum.
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Old 06-19-2018, 11:15 PM   #3
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We love ours. Currently the smallest one they make is a 33C - which is a hair over 34ft long. There were ones around 31ft in the early 2000's. To hit your price range, you'll need to be looking 2004 or older. Be aware, the older used you go the more you may have to put into it to get it/keep it running.

Not exactly sure when, but in that early 2000's timeframe, you had 2 chassis to choose from: Workhorse & Ford. Once WH went belly up, you'll find Bounders only on Ford chassis. Either are fine. WH: need to be sure the brake recall has been done. Norcold fridge: be sure black box has been installed or the fridge has been replaced.

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Old 06-20-2018, 04:58 PM   #4
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I am a solo guy. I have a 35K and it is larger then I really need but I wanted the full size shower. This was the smallest unit I could get with that size shower. You didn't mention which model? For $30K you are probably looking at older Bounders (did get a chuckle out of the original post calling it a boulder, spell check, gotta love it!).
There are a lot of them out there. Not the best quality and certainly not the worst.
Know what you are buying and have it checked by a professional. If you are handy the RV lifestyle is great. If you are not handy then well you need some deep pockets for repairs. After the first year my repairs are pretty minimal but things always crop up.
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Old 06-20-2018, 05:21 PM   #5
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It seems like I just typed these words yesterday about another message thread with someone buying a Bounder, anyway back to the topic. I have nothing specifically bad to say about a Fleetwood Bounder, they built a lot of them, but the reason so many have been built is they are an entry level class A coach, though perhaps one of the better entry level models, sort of like say a Ford Taurus is an entry level 4 door car. There is nothing particularly wrong with it, though when shopping in the used $30,000 price range you may find something with a lot better initial build quality out there for about the same price. Of course on all older used coaches condition is everything, and those that were built from better materials tend to hold up better. All things being equal, full body paint out lasts vinyl graphics, fiberglass showers out last plastic showers which become brittle with age, solid wood cabinets out last particle board, ... Also I want to second the question of size, and how big do you need when traveling solo. I have a 2002 Safari Trek 2830 (29'5" actual bumper to bumper) class A with no slides, and find it is actually bigger than I need when traveling solo (which accounts for about half my travels). After a recent 2 week long solo trip I found myself thinking that at no point on this trip did I even sit in all of the 7 possible seating locations (2 top table, only ever sat in the rear chair, never sat in the passenger seat, never on the trip sat in the 3rd captains chair behind the passenger seat).
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Old 06-20-2018, 06:57 PM   #6
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From one single to another!

Cathy, There is nothing wrong with a Bounder if you find the right one!
I have a 2004 38N. I got very lucky with mine as I bought it from a friend who accepted way less than what it was worth. I promised him I would keep the secret!
It is a little large for me and it being a DP, it has more needs than my knowledge base started out with. But, one of the deciding factors was the quality of the units built before 08. When Fleetwood went belly up, the company that acquired the brand did not acquire the reputation! I would probably be just as comfortable in a shorter coach. But, I have gotten to like the fact that I have as much square footage as a Manhatten apartment!
The key things that have already been said are a floor plan that works, mileage and maintenance, engine and chassis (love my Cummins and Freightliner) and condition, condition, condition!
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Old 06-20-2018, 07:17 PM   #7
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Take into consideration that you will need some smaller vehicle for short trips and places where you cannot park a motor home, such as in towns & cities that have limited street parking and no large malls. You can tow an older small car like a Corolla or Civic. You can also go with 2 wheels if you care to.





My trusty Yamaha comes with me whenever I RV.

If you chose to pull a trailer, then you would always have the tow vehicle for local travel. Having done both, I much prefer the trailer.
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Old 06-21-2018, 07:00 AM   #8
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My first comment is be sure to budget something for what will be necessary repairs when you first get the RV. That may be things like an AC not working, shocks, tires, or whatever. RV's are as complex as a house.

Next -- when you read forums, if you are new to them, remember that most forum's are about problems so don't be scared away if you read about bounders here, and only see posts about problems. Almost no one posts and says, "Oh my AC worked good, or my shower was fine", People mainly post on issues so there are very few posts about the good sides of owning any RV.

Finally, find a well cared for RV and go for it.
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