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Old 12-23-2012, 07:00 PM   #1
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NewB 1993 Country Coach Magna

Nervous Buyer... So I ran across a 1993 Country Coach Magna 36 'DECORUM' EDITION 118000 miles. Powered by the CUMMINS C8.3 300HP Turbo Diesel with Allison MD3060 transmission. GILLIG Chassis.

Looks to be in very good condition, we will find out more after our pre-purchase inspection. Anyway, Does anyone have some input on what I can expect after purchasing an older Country Coach? Should I expect to break down everytime I take a trip somewhere.

Normally I hear the motors go for about 300-500,000 miles but what about the transmissions, what can I expect with 118,000 on the MD3060.

Any good or bad feedback would be great.

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Old 12-23-2012, 09:01 PM   #2
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Do you have service records ?
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Old 12-23-2012, 10:57 PM   #3
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No records...

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Originally Posted by rdkng88 View Post
Do you have service records ?
No service records, I think it was a bank repo, purchasing through a dealer. There is really no information other than a vin number which looks pretty clear but tells me pretty much nothing other than it was owned by a guy in Alaska, and used it in New Mexico.
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Old 12-24-2012, 12:17 PM   #4
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Inspect this coach very very!!! carefully. Unless you are getting it so cheap your pants catch on fire and you are a skilled mechanic I think you would be wise to get something from someone who can tell you something about it. Likely you are buying this pretty cheap. But that coach coast a bunch of money new 19 years ago. So when you need to fix things you will be handing over a bunch of money. When I bought our seven year old Affinity 3 years ago I bought a very high quality extended warranty. Thankfully. I expected a Christmas Card (but did not get one) from the warranty company happy because my policy had expired and was not renewed. It cost them a bunch more money in the 3 years I had the policy than I paid.

You asked about transmissions. I had my transmission serviced two months ago. It stopped working. Warranty company paid 7 grand to replace it. If there had been no warranty I would have been in a fight with the service place who did the service. I have 108,000 on my coach.

With a 2000s Fleetwood you would have far! less possibility of expensive repairs. We have good friends who have a 2003 34' Fleetwood they bought new and have had relatively trouble free use for 80,000 miles.

But the comparison in driving comfort between the two would be great. A well built DP is like a magic carpet ride down the road. A class A gas coach is like taking a UPS truck down the freeway.

For boon docking all the time in the desert high clearance is a nice thing to have. A super C like a Jayco does that sort of thing well. Or an old FC Bluebird. The front motor Blue Birds are like old high clearance school buses. If I was going to Mexico or the desert all the time I would look for a truck based Jayco or Dynamax. Or a well kept early 80's FC Blue Bird. Blue Bird would have to have air ride.
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Old 12-28-2012, 05:08 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobioknight View Post
Nervous Buyer... So I ran across a 1993 Country Coach Magna 36 'DECORUM' EDITION 118000 miles. Powered by the CUMMINS C8.3 300HP Turbo Diesel with Allison MD3060 transmission. GILLIG Chassis.

Looks to be in very good condition, we will find out more after our pre-purchase inspection. Anyway, Does anyone have some input on what I can expect after purchasing an older Country Coach? Should I expect to break down everytime I take a trip somewhere.

Normally I hear the motors go for about 300-500,000 miles but what about the transmissions, what can I expect with 118,000 on the MD3060.

Any good or bad feedback would be great.


We have a 92 with 97000 mi. had a few issues when we bought it, cruise control and dash air did not work, Generator ran but wouldn't make electricity, turned out to be capacitor $35 , other than that it is beautiful and we love it, took our longest trip last summer from Tex. to Detroit Mi. no trouble, BUT...we only paid $23700 for it, hope this helps
Benny
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Old 12-29-2012, 12:10 PM   #6
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It all depends on current condition. I would have the engine and transmission inspected by a competent mechanic as these will cost as much to repair or replace than the purchase price of the coach. But....the combo is very durable and likely will not have a problem. (I did not follow my above advice 11 years ago but did have a warranty program that covered my fuel injection pump repair.)

Breakdowns we have endured on the road.

1. The school bus coolant pump near the engine that forces hot coolant to the dash heater failed dumping coolant on the freeway and shutting down the engine.
You can bypass that pump with a $2 hose connector and some hose clamps. Fill the coolant with water and get to the next service point. I removed that pump from the system 3 years ago and had good dash heat in 40 degree weather last weekend.

2. A bolt on the fuel line clamp at the engine vibrated loose. The fuel line cracked parking the rig in the middle of the highway. Coach-Net is the best friend you can have in that circumstance. A $1000+ tow for no charge.

3. The fuel injection pump failed. This was a $4,000 repair seven years ago. Coach-net to the rescue. A $1,000+ tow for no charge.

The last two items can happen to any rig. Neither were really age related.

I have recently replaced the dash AC compressor myself and have repaired the exhaust manifold for $1,500 (common), exhaust brake ($200), and replaced the $75 engine water pump. I sealed a leaky timing chain cover with a $5 can of spray stuff (Cummins West wanted $1,800 to fix this 4 years ago).

If the rig has Clear Coat paint on the beige portions of the body, it may need to be removed or reapplied. That will be a $8,000 job if done professionally. I am in the process of reapplying it myself which is a lot of work and less quality than the original.

We have just turned 90,000 miles and have owned it for 11 years. I would take it anywhere in North American without concern.
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Old 12-29-2012, 12:21 PM   #7
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You never know if and when something will go out. I have been lucky, I seem to only breakdown at home. My repairs have been simple ones.
Good luck.
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Old 01-05-2013, 09:54 AM   #8
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Thanks you all for the help, this forum has been very enlightening and informative. Both inspections indicated good condition. So, Decided to buy the 1993 country coach, along with coveralls and a good set of tools.
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