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Old 09-08-2010, 12:42 PM   #1
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Country Coach Owners Club
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I fell in love....

Years ago, long before I could collect retirement, I fell in love with the Country Coach line of Motorhomes. Now that I am close to retirement, and selling the house, you guys let the company go out of business...

Not that I could have afforded a brand new Coach anyway, but now I worry about support if I find an older one and want to buy. Since most of the components are third party OEM parts, I'll probably go ahead anyway.

To this end, I looked at a very nice 1999 Intrigue last weekend. I noticed something that worried me, the double-pane windows seemed to have some sealing problems. The black sealant had moved up into the window area. Owner said it didn't affect the window, but just the appearance. Not sure I totally believe him, but wondered if any of you have had a similar problem?

Based on asking prices, it looks like we will be looking in the '99, '00, '01 model years we have a budget of about $75,000 and don't want to have any debt left over.

Any tips, tricks or traps you can tell me about in those years I would love to gain additional education from your collective wisdom.

OH, one more thing, the owner said he didn't have JACKS? Is that right? He had the HWH leveling panel..?? English was not his native language, and perhaps there was a slight communication problem between him and me.

Specifically, we are looking for a 40' Allure, or Intrigue, or Magna. We would prefer the Dinette to the table and chairs, and would prefer the 'Dinette Slide' to the 'Kitchen Slide'. Just about everything else can be worked with. Our intended use is full time for about 5+ years.

Thanks in advance for your counsel and welcome.
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Old 09-08-2010, 01:45 PM   #2
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if english is not his 1st tongue be sure you understand the coach well
a misexplained item could be costly later'
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Old 09-08-2010, 01:50 PM   #3
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Thanks for the heads up. Frankly I was a little disappointed in his personal maintenance. The oil had been changed regularly and the service had been performed, but the basement storage was dirty, other small maintenance items seemed to have been neglected. I don't think we'll be selecting this one as our future home. BUT, I still am interested in the CC line generally and any particular things to look out for in the approx, 10-year old models.
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Old 09-08-2010, 08:08 PM   #4
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The no jacks comment is probably correct. Our coach has the HWH system that levels the coach with the same air bags used for the suspension. -- Chuck
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Old 09-08-2010, 08:15 PM   #5
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Welcome to retirement and we hope you will enjoy it as so many of us do.

Now for your RV you should look at the Winnebago Tour 40' which is a super motor home with all sorts of goodies. I happen to like my Adventurer but that is me. Another coach to look at would be the Tiffin Allegro Bus and then if you have the bucks look at the Newell Coach.

One thing though you have to remember is a lot of the big coaches can't get into a lot of campgrounds especially state and natuional parks which Seniors get in for free and camp for 1/2 price same as COE.

Well enjoy trying to find the ideal choice but like I said check out the Winnebago line.

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Old 09-09-2010, 10:09 PM   #6
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Air leveling is done without jacks just using the suspension air bags. A very nice system since leveling is done without worries about soft ground.

The creeping seal problem is common on rigs with dual pane windows. Cost to repair is about $200 per window. I am not sure that the efficiency of the window is compromised, but the appearance certainly is.

CC made a very nice coach in our experience.
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Old 09-11-2010, 05:27 PM   #7
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Country Coach jacks and is it safe

When looking a year ago for a motor home I came away with the idea thinking that Country Coach was the most motor home for the money. In general they are a Mercedes Benz type of construction. The fact that they went out of business means you get a lot of coach for your dollar with CC.

I have had zero, repeat zero problems getting work done on our Affinity.

We got a fantastic deal on our motor home. After 10 months of owning it I can tell you I would make the exact same decision and buy this motor home if I knew what I do now.

We don't have jacks. This is a big advantage. You just double hit a button and it levels itself in a couple of minutes. No punching dents in soft surfaces.

Our budget and what we spent was a bit more than you intend to. I don't think you will have a problem finding a good motor home in your specified price range.

With all due deference to Tom from NC, Winnebago and Tiffin are not in the same class as Country Coaches. This is not to disparage those well made coaches, but you just don't get the same quality level from them. I think Tiffin makes a high end line and don't know it well. I can tell you that last month at the FMCA meeting in OR I did not see any new coaches I would trade mine for.
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Old 09-12-2010, 09:52 AM   #8
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Thanks Bob and Barbara. I would love an Affinity, but as you said, I think it's going to be a bit out of my price range. Again, with no disrespect, it was fairly obvious that Tom-NC was pimping for Win-a-bagel. Tiffin is a qualtiy line and I would get more excited if they weren't on the Freightliner chassis. The wife and I owned a Newmar Dutch Star when we were in our part time mode. While I respect that Newmar has so far survived the economic woes which have destroyed Country Coach, there really was no comparison between the Dutch Star and Country Coach. I felt that the CC was better at every touch point. Just my opinion, but that is why I am looking for the Country Coach.

If you have any specific areas where I should pay particular attention as we continue our search, I would appreciate your comments and tips.
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Old 09-12-2010, 10:15 AM   #9
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B Bob and all others that are looking for a motorhome to fall in love with.

Yes, I am a Winnabago fan and will be for some time to come, however I was just making a statement from what I have seen on the road. There are a lot of Winnebagos either high end or not, Tiffins whether Allegro Bay or Bus, Newmar Dutch star or not out there on the road and enjoying the rving lifestyle. There are not a lot of Country Couches, Blue Birds or Prevosts for the obviuos reason, people can't afford them. It also depends on where you want to go and what you want to do. If you want to go to State Parks, Nat'l Parks, Corp of Engineers or just a small campground anywhere you can't use the high dollar coaches as those must go to Resorts or Wal-Mart.

There also is a maintainence issue with a lot of the high end coaches like $200.00 or better for an oil change ( 20 qts of oil) and yes I did my homework. Then there are all sort of filters to change.

The last post mentioned win-a-bagel well WINNABAGO has a lot of ammenities that others don't and I wonder if you have a high end coach can you get the original fresh water tank if you spring a leak or if you get in an accident can you get original parts? Well with a Winnebafgo you can as they manufacture all their own components and if you don't believe me go to the factory and take the tour.

Lastly sure if I had the money (1.2-2.0 million) I would love to have a Prevost but I don't so I have the next best thing in my opinion and I enjoy it as a matter of fact it just came home from a 11,361 mile trip with no problems other than a bad tire caused by me hitting a pothole and loosing the balance on that tire.

Congratulations on your Country Coach and I hope you enjoy many miles in it as I am enjoying in My Winnebago Adventurer.

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Old 09-13-2010, 09:48 AM   #10
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We've had no problems getting ours serviced -- whether regular service, repairs or upgrades. As with most rigs, except fo rthe fiberglass and the frame everything is 3rd party anyway. THe nice thing is that with a CC if you get all of the owner's manuals with it they come with great wiring & plumbing diagrams and all of the wiring is well laid out and well labelled.

Re the windows, we haven't had this problem but have heard of others that have. Basically it is the seal which while it doesn't affect the window does negate its insulating capability and may allow moisture to condense between the panes. There are some glass places that will re-seal the windows so that they don't have to be replaced.

BTW, if we wer eto/had to replace the rig today I woudl still have CC at the top of my list due to overall construction quality, ride quality and livability.
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Old 09-13-2010, 02:53 PM   #11
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good places to look for used CCs

Herbie,

When I was looking for a coach I was really wide open to brands. Our first drive was on a rental 18 months old Fleetwood Providence. We also looked at a brand new Providence. Both my wife and I liked the way it drove and the full wall slide. Then I bought the RVCG disk set that had literally thousands of motor home specs on it. And I bought every other RV reference buying guide I could find.

We then went out and looked and drove a bunch of diesel motor homes. As small as a FRED 33' and as big as our CC. In the background I kept ebay forwarding me the brands I was currently interested in and were located somewhat close to our area. I also read the on line sellers like RV trader and RV source. And then Craigs list.

I read this forum and the Open Roads one. I was originally going to get a Blue Bird. I liked the quality and the look. But I found I really liked the look of the old ones and we wanted a newer coach with slides. The same guys that sell Blue Birds - Holland - sell CC. They also have Fleetwood Newmar Tiffin and a few others. A very good sales person who is also a gentleman named Steve Wilson at Holland got us to look at CC.

I also found PPL motor home web site absolutely the best reference guide on real pricing. If they had not been so far away we would have gone there and likely bought a motor home. We looked and looked and looked. And drove. We started going towards a bit higher end, more money, and bigger.

We did look at several Winnebagos. I thought they made a good motor home but we could not find one that fit us. We also looked at a number of Tiffins. There are not so many of those out west. We also could not find a Tiffin we really liked. There are a lot of the American Coaches out here. I would have bought one of those. They were significantly less money than what we bought, but my wife did not like them. I also have a couple friends that own Dutch Stars. The seemed like a very good middle of the road buy. I also have a friend that used to own a DS lives full time in his MH and now has a CC Magna 1999. He stated that the Magna had much more durable systems than the DStar. He wore out the DS.

We kept coming back to the fact that nearly every one liked the Country Coach Line. And many that we got in just took our breath away. The wood, floors, and general construction was all very durable and high quality. This was the case even at the lower end of the CC line. Stuff that makes CCs good is for example the electrical cabinet in the front driverside bay. My coach is very organized with all fuses with indicator lights telling if they are working or not. One of my very good friends opened his yesterday on his 2004 38' Holiday Rambler. His is disorganized and you would really have to know what you are doing to find anything.

Our three final choices were the Affinity, 2006 Inspire 40' with four slides and 19,000 miles, Alpine 40' 2004 with 18000 miles. The two CCs were essentially the same price and the Alpine was 40,000 less. What made us decide on the Affinity was the semi custom interior. We never saw any motor home like it. We did see one 2000 Prevost that had some of the elements of the interior. And we thought the layout was exactly what we wanted. The bedroom is really spacious even though it only has one slide. And then the final thing was the way the Affinity drove. It just went down the freeway like a locomotive. I am very happy with our choice. There have been quite a few fix ups though since we bought it. I think any used motor home will have some.

Yesterday I sat around for a couple of hours comparing fix ups and breakdowns with two of my buddies. The before mentioned 2004 HR. The other a 2005 Foretravel. Bottom line, nobody wants to give up the RV lifestyle or would change it for anything. Have good hunting.

Bob
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Old 09-13-2010, 04:33 PM   #12
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Window seals

Herbie801:
Last year we purchased our Trek which had window seal problems in 2/3 of the windows. The price was right for the motor home so we felt that we could afford to have all of the windows repaired. It is a problem with windows supplied by the SE-GI company. It became known to us by the name "Creepy Seals". There are three good companies that can do the work. It was necessary to have all of the windows in the coach removed. The windows were disassembled, meticulously cleaned and the seals removed. The windows were reassembled with different seals and then reinstalled in the coach. The work had to be done with the coach indoors in order to keep the interior of the coach clean. If you find a coach you like and it has only one window with creepy seals don't think the problem is just one window. If it has SE-GI windows there may be more windows with creepy seals later.
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Old 09-13-2010, 06:27 PM   #13
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If you are not dead set on a coach with slides, there are several CC Concepts on the market. IMO, they are the best production line MH ever produced.

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Old 09-13-2010, 07:34 PM   #14
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Thanks to all of you for your comments. The wife and I will be full-timers and while we hope to spend some extended stays, (especially in the winter) we also want to see the Great U.S.A. We have looked at non-slide coaches, and the lack of slide weight and systems to fail is attractive, we both think we will have higher incidence of cabin fever if we don't have a little more room.

We aren't "SET" on having a slide, but think that we are going to try and pull the trigger on a '00 or '01 coach, and most of them have slides, which we're OK with.

I have even seen a couple of Affinities which I could afford...(grin), but most likely will be a Allure, Intrigue or Magna. Both the wife and I would prefer a Dinette Slide with the Fixed Dinette, and we would be elated if we could find one with a King Bed, but may end up paying some after market re-modeler to change the bed width later. We could even hire someone up in Eugene area to build us a dinette if all we can find is Tables.

We have considered Foretravel, Newell and Bluebird, but none of those are in our price range unless we go back so far that they are well used and have a lot of miles. We are also considering a Monaco, but in spite of Tom-NC's encouragement, we aren't really interested in a Freightliner chassis. We owned a 38' Dutch Star on a Freightliner and felt it drove like a truck when compared to our friends Monaco. Then I drove a CC and realized that the chassis really does make a difference. (up to that time everyone told me it didn't make a difference), ...[the lies some people tell].

Our house will go on the market late fall, and while it's not the best time to be listing a house, I hope we can get it sold and ready to pay CASH for our Coach by the early spring. We'll probably live in the Coach full time here in Utah through the blistering summer and see how she does and then by the late summer or early fall of 2011, DW will be close enough to early retirement age that we can plan our escape.

So bottom line is we expect to have about 70,000 to spend (leaving a reserve for our exit strategy), and seem to have settled on either a CC or a Monaco. Would prefer a CC, but may have to "settle" depending on the market and what's available when we have the cash burning a hole in our pockets.

For those who are eager to help me finance a newer Coach, the answer is NO, we are out of debt now, and intend to stay that way until the end. So please don't contact me with easy-down-low-payment ideas. (Been there, done that, not interested).

And finally, Tom-NC, sorry we just aren't excited about Win-a-bagel.
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