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Old 01-04-2016, 08:25 PM   #1
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Headed to a pre-purchase insp. of a 2005 Inspire

I would like to ask for some words of wisdom from the CC community. I am flying to a consignment lot to inspect a 2005 Inspire. The coach has around 60,000 miles on it, and quite a good price IMHO. I could not find a 2005 brochure, but I am pretty sure it has the Cat C9.

I plan on having a qualified RV tech with me. We will obviously do the standard house and chassis inspection. You know make sure all the appliances work, no leaks, tire dates, battery issues, no warning lights, etc;.

I will test drive the coach. I have zero time driving a MH, but we owned an International 4700, which pulled a 40' Teton fiver. Lots of road miles with that rig, and 1000's more in commercial rigs. What should I look for on the road test?

I have the Dry PTO paperwork provided here on the forum printed out, and plan on getting that checked and verified.

I also understand there was an issue with the radiators on this yr model. I really couldn't find a thread that described how to tell if you have the suspect radiator? If someone can tell me how to inspect the radiator to tell if it has been previously changed?

Any other suggestions on things to look for to make a purchase decision would be appreciated.
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Old 01-04-2016, 08:35 PM   #2
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No matter how good the inspection and drive go you can still have problems!
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Old 01-04-2016, 09:00 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmhailey View Post
I would like to ask for some words of wisdom from the CC community. I am flying to a consignment lot to inspect a 2005 Inspire. The coach has around 60,000 miles on it, and quite a good price IMHO. I could not find a 2005 brochure, but I am pretty sure it has the Cat C9.

I plan on having a qualified RV tech with me. We will obviously do the standard house and chassis inspection. You know make sure all the appliances work, no leaks, tire dates, battery issues, no warning lights, etc;.

I will test drive the coach. I have zero time driving a MH, but we owned an International 4700, which pulled a 40' Teton fiver. Lots of road miles with that rig, and 1000's more in commercial rigs. What should I look for on the road test?

I have the Dry PTO paperwork provided here on the forum printed out, and plan on getting that checked and verified.

I also understand there was an issue with the radiators on this yr model. I really couldn't find a thread that described how to tell if you have the suspect radiator? If someone can tell me how to inspect the radiator to tell if it has been previously changed?

Any other suggestions on things to look for to make a purchase decision would be appreciated.
First, check the date on the tires. If approaching 7 years get them replaced as part of the deal. The Toyo M154 tire has a good reputation.

Next, get fluid samples. This must be done when everything is at operating temperature. I use these folks: Blackstone Labs

Get the kits for each fluid, engine, transmission and coolant before your request the samples. The samples MUST be taken with clean sample drawing equipment. The drain plug method is better than nothing.

When you take corners plan ahead and make turns wide. Hug the center line when turning right and stay centered for a left turn. (Don't forget the rear axle overhang in any case.) Check for steering pull and excessive effort. Look for unusual wear on the tire tread. If you can do a 5 or 6% grade that will give you an indication of power performance. Watch the temperature gauge. If it starts to climb sharply under load there is a problem.

Physically inspect the house and start batteries. If any swelling is noted suspect trouble in the making.

Once you think you have the rig you want you can always have a survey done. It may be worth the money.

FYI: Winnebago just acquired all of CC. They plan on going back into production sometime next year.

I hope you find what you are hoping for.

Happy trails,
Rick Y

PS: Found this site; #3914 - 2005 Country Coach Inspire for sale in Alvarado TX
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Old 01-04-2016, 09:49 PM   #4
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When it comes to the radiator you should be able to see where it bolts together or get a magnet and check it, mine is a steel and copper plus I have Cat EC-1 coolant amber in color.
Check windows to see if they have any fogging, I have had all mine resealed, $$$$
May have to ditch the Norcold and install a RR frig.
See if they have use the advanced oil filter 1R-1808 and fuel filters max around 5-6000mi on an oil change.
All ready said (check the tires)
Check gear box drivers front slide to see if it is tight to the frame, the 4 bolts work there way out, I used blue loctite.
You know about the wet PTO
Good luck
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:33 PM   #5
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Great ideas. Thanks.

"When it comes to the radiator you should be able to see where it bolts together or get a magnet and check it, mine is a steel and copper plus I have Cat EC-1 coolant amber in color. "

So am I safe to assume the original radiator was all non-ferrous? Aluminum I assume. Then the better Rads have a steel tank? and copper fins?

"Next, get fluid samples. This must be done when everything is at operating temperature. I use these folks: Blackstone Labs

Get the kits for each fluid, engine, transmission and coolant before your request the samples. The samples MUST be taken with clean sample drawing equipment. The drain plug method is better than nothing."

I use Blackstone on my other vehicles. However I am guessing the coach has had a recent service, but I will check. I hadn't thought about the Allison?
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:52 PM   #6
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I would recommend that you look at a variety of Country Coaches before buying. Since you have zero hours in driving one, what point of reference will you have to know a good driving one from not so good. There are LOTS of differences in the different models of Country Coach. When we bought one six years ago I drove lots of Country Coaches. We bought the one we absolutely loved.

Of course this is up to you, but it is a serious commitment of time and money to buy, learn, and maintain one of these hotel suites on wheels. It is very very expensive to buy a coach and then after six months trade it in for one you like better. Make sure you get one you want to keep for a while. Just MHO.

I found it a lot of fun looking at different rigs. Don't cut that fun short for yourself. I have never driven a Country Coach I did not like, but I do prefer the Intrigue and up models. The interiors are just spectacular on them. Plus they come with things like large displacement motors, aqua hot, all electric, and so on.
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Old 01-05-2016, 11:21 AM   #7
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Well I understand that the coach has had the radiator replaced, and the wet PTO kit installed. So that somewhat makes things easier.

Question?

Is there a possibility to tell if the previous owner added any kind of steering improvement components?
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Old 01-05-2016, 12:28 PM   #8
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"Is there a possibility to tell if the previous owner added any kind of steering improvement components?"

Sure, just look under the front end. You can tell if there is something bolted on very easily.
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Old 01-05-2016, 05:51 PM   #9
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I have a question about cracks.

There is an approximately 6" stress crack on the lower left corner of the bedroom slide opening. The slide itself doesn't appear to have any cracks, and looks good. Any idea on what could have caused that? Possibly putting the slide out with the coach unlevel?
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Old 01-05-2016, 05:53 PM   #10
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"Is there a possibility to tell if the previous owner added any kind of steering improvement components?"

Sure, just look under the front end. You can tell if there is something bolted on very easily.

So I understand the coach didn't come with any sort of steering stabilizer?
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Old 01-05-2016, 07:11 PM   #11
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To the best of my knowledge, steering stabilizers are not available for the IFS of your chassis. I have a 2006 Inspire and know that 3rd party add-ons from SuperSteer are not made. The only improvements that I made to my coach (which included a road test by Henderson's) was to beef up the front suspension with heavier Koni shocks.
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Old 01-05-2016, 07:11 PM   #12
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I have a question about cracks.

There is an approximately 6" stress crack on the lower left corner of the bedroom slide opening. The slide itself doesn't appear to have any cracks, and looks good. Any idea on what could have caused that? Possibly putting the slide out with the coach unlevel?
I have see only 1 other coach in a 40' with that crack running from the left corner of the bedroom slide opening running at a 45deg angle down to the wheel opening. That one was on a 05 also with hyd leveling mine has air leveling that puts less strain on the frame I think. He said he would just live with it.
Some of the 36' models have had bedroom slides cracking in 1/2 on the side walls, repair cost $10K
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Old 01-05-2016, 07:22 PM   #13
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Question?

Is there a possibility to tell if the previous owner added any kind of steering improvement components?
Why do you think you need that if you've never driven a CC? I know ours doesn't need anything but we've got the 20,000# front axle with dual steering boxes and 365/70 tires. It handles very well except for the bridge end dips in CA. But I think that's more from having the tag axle. It helped to turn the Koni shocks up to max also.
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Old 01-05-2016, 07:44 PM   #14
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Inspire's had problems with the windows fogging between the glass. There was a bad batch of fiber glass that has a tendency to craz. Take a walk up on the roof. Last inspire I looked at had caulking gooped over every seam. If you're looking for a 40' look at some earlier years from CC in the Allure, Magna, and Intrigue. It might save you a few bucks and you'll have a better coach to start with. But like was mentioned before. No matter what kind of shape it's in something will break. Good Luck
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