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Old 01-10-2016, 10:55 AM   #1
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Thank you CC - you built fine coaches!

We went to the Indo FMCA rally for a day trip. Walked thru many of the new and used coaches on display. New Monaco's (HR Scepter), new Tiffen's Phaeton and Allegro Bus (multiple models of Phaeton's), a 'must see' (per the salesman!) Winnebago Tour - 2014 I think, Newmar Mountain Aire, and King Aire. And several other trailers and 5th wheels.

We also walked thru many Prevost based used units. Liberty, Marathon, Country Coach, Outlaw - focusing more on the XL based, which is my preference, but the Outlaw was HR3 based unit.

So what? Well as we walked thru all of these DP's that spanned from first step above entry level (HR Scepter) to towards the top of the food chain of Tiffen, Newmar and Winnebago - I was always comparing materials and quality of construction to our 04 CC Allure. Now the Allure of 04, was described to me by a CC veteran - as the entry point into the upper CC food chain. (He used the Hyrdro Hot, heated floors, true jake compression, wood working and material choices - as away to distinguish this as the 'entry point' over the Tributes and Inspires. (And gang, I agree with his comment, that the Tribute and Inspire were built to reach a different price point, as well as for some, a less complex coach as far as components. Both are still well built, and IMO, provide solid quality and value for their price points. No way was this intended as a slight to these coaches.)

I saw no normal DP's in yesterdays walk thru's, that would have made me want to jump from our CC. Well, I did walk thru a used CC Magna, that with the BIG CAT, was pretty nice looking, and well built! And for full disclosure, I missed going thru a used Monaco Signature - which in previous visits while shopping, I felt was a solid coach, and got to love the BIG DETROIT that many of them came with...

Don't get me wrong, many of these new coaches 'looked nice', good cleaner and more modern looking interior layouts. But closet doors that would rattle while closed (rattles drive me crazy), wood working that was less then craftsmanship in build, wood finishes that were in some areas very lacking. Fixtures were a mixed bag of mid level quality, to just as good of quality as CC used. Attention to detail in the basement areas, and looking inside the engine and generator slide areas - really revealed the difference in attention to detail and care of assembly. On the coaches where I could find the available CCC, all were below 5K lbs, vs our 04 Allure is over 11K lbs.

Oh yeah, I liked some of the Prevost's we walked thru. These were all used, and frankly were not the 'creme of the crop' as far as care. Hard not to like the CC, though interior design on this specific coach, did not floor out boat. And IMO, the Outlaw, this one on the HR3 Prevost base, was of lower quality of build and materials then I feel our Allure had. (May not have been representative of Outlaw's - but this sample of one was more interior bling then it was substance.)

And of course, now at the end of this long thread, I need to acknowledge that this all just my opinion - and others may have a different view, and look for different things when examining a coach then I do. And that is OK, as it's their money going out, not mine.

A big THANK YOU to CC designers and staff - who really did build some very nice coaches. Perfect, heck no - but for sure in the league of the other top DP builders of that ear, and above many of them...

Best to all, enjoy your coaches,
Smitty

Note: I should clarify that this was for sure a small subset of available coaches. No Entegra's (that I saw), Foretravel's, etc. I do know when looking at DP's of my era, that I respected the design, materials and craftsmanships of like real Beavers, Foretravels, Wanderlodges. I liked Travel Supremes and many of he Alpine coaches too.
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Old 01-10-2016, 11:46 AM   #2
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Smitty77: Thank you for the informative write-up.I suppose some one could say you are biased a bit, but on the flip side only people like you and I who own CC products would have an intimate knowledge of the CC build quality. You are right about the Monaco signature. From what I have seen, their workmanship quality is superb.
Regards to All!
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Old 01-10-2016, 11:59 AM   #3
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Smitty, if you came n the day pass gate, you walked right by our coach as you headed to the vendors
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Old 01-10-2016, 12:16 PM   #4
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With the for sals sign on it, and the 'almost missing' CC chairs!

Good looking coach. Would have enjoyed meeting you. Looked for anyone around it, but you must have been out having fun!

Don - Our first ever visit to a FMCA rally, we always seem to miss them for some reason! I was told by one or two people we bumped into, that the felt the number of vendors was down from previous events. Your opinion on this?

Thanks,
Smitty
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Old 01-10-2016, 12:55 PM   #5
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Thanks for the report. About what I expected. I haven't seen much in the way of the new coaches that match the build quality fit and finish of my 06 Magna. I asked Butch (Williams) who I'm pretty sure most of you know, what modern coach has the quality of the CC's of old. He said without a doubt the Newells. If you know Butch you know he's not a fan of the metal buses. Any time I think of a new coach I look and go back to mine being built better (In my opinion) than what's out there now. I've been putting my money into modernizing.
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Old 01-10-2016, 01:39 PM   #6
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SRH - A biased CC owner - it just can't be so!

I'm sure their rabid CC owners somewhere, but most owners I talk to are reasonable in how they look at their coaches. For sure not perfect, with some years and models having 'quirk's'. And many are now on their 2nd, 3rd or more coach.

I have found that more first time coach owners that bought CC's, seem to be the owners I run into that have problem with their coaches. Usually I'm able to ask them how the went thru the purchase process, like perhaps having the unit pre inspected by a competent tech. One couple said 'No, it's a CC, so we knew it was one of the best, so we expected it to be so.' They were in a shop having severe water leaks resolved, including rebuilding some of the walls and flooring.

Any coach, from a Bounder to a Prevost - if not properly maintained, and letting what could be a small problem become a big one by not getting competent repairs. Can be expensive and problematic to resolve...

Off my soapbox, but do believe that when buying a used coach - that it behooves the buyer to have a 'Buyer beware' mentality. When in doubt, pay a few bucks for proper inspection and fluids analysis.

And for the record, my short list included Signature, Beaver Patriot Thunder, Wanderlodge, Foretravel's U295/U320, Travel Supremes, and a few others... CC line the Intrigue with Big Cat was my target coach, preferably with the C12. But, made the mistake of letting the DW see the size of the rally in the Allure High Cascade model - and it would have had rubber band power as far as he was concerned... Main point, is I do respect and understand that their are other fine coaches besides CCL)!

Best,
Smitty
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Old 01-10-2016, 06:05 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Smitty77 View Post
With the for sals sign on it, and the 'almost missing' CC chairs!

Good looking coach. Would have enjoyed meeting you. Looked for anyone around it, but you must have been out having fun!

Don - Our first ever visit to a FMCA rally, we always seem to miss them for some reason! I was told by one or two people we bumped into, that the felt the number of vendors was down from previous events. Your opinion on this?

Thanks,
Smitty
Nope, the for sale coach wasn't mine. I was parked to the right of the ramp as you walked down from the auditorium, facing south.

The attendance was down this year as compared to previous. Usual attendance in Indio is about 1,000, this year there was 875. Even the vendor attendance was down about 25 vendors.

We have been in the desert since Dec 27 and the campground we were in had about 50 coaches for a 300+ site availability. Everyone is blaming the Canadian dollar but I don't think that is the total problem. People just aren't traveling as early as in the past. We left home a couple days before turkey day and saw very few coaches on the road. Most of those were headed north!
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Old 01-10-2016, 08:18 PM   #8
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I also went to the rally again this year and was not impressed with the coaches on display . The 45ft Intrigue that was shown had a really bad smell inside and the ones above that were in pretty tough shape . When I look at a coach I want it neat and clean . I'm on my second CC and looking to step up to my third . From what I've seen at the rally I'd rather buy a good used CC because of it's practicality and interior and exterior quality and design . So far I'll stay with my 2008 45ft CC Intrigue Jubilee with 525hp C13 Cat .
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Old 01-11-2016, 06:25 AM   #9
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Every so often I get an 'itch' and start thinking of trading for a newer coach and have even briefly considered seriously looking at either Newmar or Entegra. If we were to spring for new, we would have to stay with either a Dutch Star or Anthem. While they both have more 'modern' interiors, neither of them have the features we now have on the Allure. Plus we really like the floor plan and storage on this coach. Most of the newer coaches seem to place the w/d in the rear of the coach. We like having our stacked w/d in the hallway near the mid ship bath. Add to these issues the fact that I believe our CC has really great build quality (with maybe the exception of my disappointment of them using what seems to be MDF in the ceiling which is problematic with my skylight leak), it is paid for, I have learned its systems, and it drives wonderfully. We've upgraded the furniture, TV's and only now need to replace the carpet. DW and I decided that we'd be foolish to trade it on anything else. Even if we have to spend several more thousands $ on repairs/maintenance over the next few years of use, we still come out ahead.

So, I won't be scratching my itch. We will keep this very fine, classic, well built coach.
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Old 01-11-2016, 09:19 AM   #10
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Have to agree with this thread.

It is gratifying to see others speak to the things my DW and I have felt for some time now regarding the enduring quality and "class" of Country Coaches. Every time we visit a show, open house, or stay in a large RV resort and visit new friends in their SOB coach we are struck with how our 04 Intrigue 42 compares. Just an example, the shower enclosure on several $5-700k coaches is too short for me to stand up in! Agreed, at 6'5" I am not average in height, but somehow CC got it right when they built ours. Storage cabinets are in short supply in those new coaches, and the hardware is generally very average. We chose light maple and have never regretted it compared to the dark interiors so common today. Huge thermopane windows with exterior bronzing on the glass, superb fiberglass layup on the exterior that doesn't look like 12 miles of bad road. These are a few of the things we still find missing in many current offerings.

We can and have installed LED lights, Smart tv's, and new carpet to modernize ours, but the fundamentals of structure, fit/finish, and quality appointments still seem to be ahead of the current "pack" of coaches competing for what had been the Intrigue's market. The ride and handling is still as good as anything we've seen, except perhaps for wanting a steerable tag axle. The CCC is incredible, and functional access to tall basement storage is great. Side-hinged basement doors would be nice, but in the end we will be keeping our "magic carpet" for years to come unless that winning $1 Billion Powerball ticket ends up in my pocket. Then a Newell, Foretravel, or H3 Millenium would be on our shopping list.

Safe travels.
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Old 01-11-2016, 11:12 AM   #11
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Gary - You may recall my post around the June timeframe. I really was deep into the 'What it..' comparison of either a 2 slide Prevost Based 40' XL based coach, or an older CC Concept. After weeks of reading Prevost boards, and doing the math - I had determined that the Prevost would be the way I would have gone... I see 'would', as I also did the finance shuffle dance too - and decided I would not make any decisions like this until I reach 65... Now just over two years away... So for now, sure like looking them (and yeah, the coaches at this show were not the creme of the crop) - but just window shopping!

Old Dingy - Yep, pretty much we match in our thoughts... The only reason I'll still make a final decision at age 65 to maybe jump to the Prevost - is the added edge of safety the provide. No question they'd survive an accident better then even our well built CC's. They're just built differently!

And I want to thank you for contributing to the Powerball funding of my upcoming winning ticket!

Best to all,
Smitty
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Old 01-11-2016, 01:58 PM   #12
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I also have a 2004 Country Coach Allure, when I look at new coaches which I often do I find that they do not seem to be built with the same quality as my coach.
That being said I have been looking at 2006/2007 Country Coach Magna's which I like very much. The question I have concerns the engines the Cat C-13 seems to be very reliable from what I have herd. However I have herd a number of people state that the Cummins ISX 600 is trouble. For those of you that have this engine what is your experience, if considering this model should I stay away from the Cummins, and look for one with the Cat.
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Old 01-11-2016, 05:46 PM   #13
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Mine is a bit older than all of yours that posted so far but it still seems to be built very well. At 18 years old is rattle and squeek free and drives very well and she runs like a top.
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Old 01-11-2016, 06:02 PM   #14
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Mine is a bit older than all of yours that posted so far but it still seems to be built very well. At 18 years old is rattle and squeek free and drives very well and she runs like a top.
I'm still at the fairgrounds and a '98 Affinity pulled in next to me with a dead generator. First problem he has had with it since he bought it 10 years ago
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