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Old 08-17-2015, 02:22 PM   #1
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43 ft Fifth Wheeler or Motorhome

Now I'm not complaining I love my Heartland Cyclone 3800 HD fifth wheeler. However it's too big at most Campsites even though the park says it will fit. Tight parking is always a problem and I'm getting tired of hooking and unhooking in bad weather due to my arthritis in my hand. It's not bad now but it will be in about 5 to 10 years.
If you had a choice would you keep the fifth wheeler or trade it in for a Motorhome. Convenience over comfort?
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Old 08-17-2015, 02:37 PM   #2
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We pulled a 36' Cedar Creek 5er for 10 years before getting the MH in 2012. We loved the 5er, but after retiring and wanting to travel the country, we decided that a MH would be much more comfortable and easier to handle at our age. We have not regretted that decision!
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Old 08-17-2015, 02:38 PM   #3
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That's a tough call FOR YOU since you already own it and like it.

in my case it was an easy decision with a problematic large 5th wheel that I was glad they bought back !!!

you have to weigh the financial hit you will take and decide if Momma likes it well enough to change !

We are MORE than pleased with our move.
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Old 08-17-2015, 02:56 PM   #4
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If you decide to pull a toad you need to hook/unhook when you travel. But after you do it a few times its not that bad of a job. Backing into a campground lot is easier but the rest of the setup is about the same. It is nice to be able to pull over and have lunch and never get out to go to the 5er.
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Old 08-17-2015, 02:59 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ichatman View Post
Now I'm not complaining I love my Heartland Cyclone 3800 HD fifth wheeler. However it's too big at most Campsites even though the park says it will fit. Tight parking is always a problem and I'm getting tired of hooking and unhooking in bad weather due to my arthritis in my hand. It's not bad now but it will be in about 5 to 10 years.
If you had a choice would you keep the fifth wheeler or trade it in for a Motorhome. Convenience over comfort?
There is a couple of good replies all ready. I moved from a 32 fifth wheel to a 38 class A. For me, I did not need the large pickup truck as I drive (at that point) 30k miles a year. The truck was very difficult to park at work and we had issues parking at a few campgrounds. As I am used to driving large long trucks the class A was very easy to drive and park. I also like the fact in the summer when its really hot I can drive with both Roof AC on so when we get to the campground the RV is cool.

Set up and break down is fast and easy to do.

My cousin has a 38 fifth wheel he pulls with his Kenworth truck. It turns head for sure but its hard to park in a lot of Campgrounds and is a pain if you have to take it into town.

My .02 worth!! Good Luck
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Old 08-17-2015, 03:27 PM   #6
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Went from a 35' 5th Wheel to our present rig. No comparison, will take the MH/Toad any day and twice on Sunday. We have hook/unhook of the toad under 5mins now. DW would never drive with the 5th, now she is looking at piloting the MH (thinks she likes it)
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Old 08-17-2015, 03:37 PM   #7
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We've owned everything except a class B and we're now on our second FW after owning a class A. I really don't see much difference unhooking the tow vehicle from the FW v. unhooking the toad from a class A. You've still got to get out to hook up water, electric and maybe sewer. Guess you could say leveling from inside a class A is a good thing, and many FWs now come with 6-point leveling (operated from outside). We like FW floor plans better than in class As. I don't like having an additional chassis/motor to maintain with a class A, and I always find a need to own a pickup truck other than to pull a FW.
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Old 08-17-2015, 08:08 PM   #8
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We went from a 33' 5th wheel to a 37' gas Class A and would never go back. Never liked site seeing in the 3/4 ton gas hog. Now all side trips are in our 4 cyl toad. Other pluses are full body paint, high end and plentiful outside storage compartments, higher quality overall and comfort
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Old 08-20-2015, 08:11 PM   #9
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Class A...been the 5th wheel route. It was fine, but can't compare to the ease and on road comfort of the Class A. A few years ago we pulled into a CG...cold, nasty, light rain. So we leveled, put out the slides, fired up the generator and had an adult beverage. A bit later I went out and hooked up the utilities. I'd never go back.
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Old 08-20-2015, 08:29 PM   #10
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We also like the fact that it's easy for my wife to grab a snack, a drink , or even make a
coffee for us without stopping in a motor-home. Also, she can go to the washroom while
rolling down the highway.
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Old 08-20-2015, 08:41 PM   #11
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Always had TT's up until we got a MH in 1988. Have never had anything but MH's since. Much easier for the DW to make it to the bathroom and not need to stop. There are some nice 5th wheel floorplans though if you're going to stay in one place for long periods.
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Old 08-21-2015, 01:35 PM   #12
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We are fed up with the coach and the costs of maintaining it. We have ours up for sale currently and as soon as she's gone we are buying a new F350 Diesel truck and are currently looking for a 5er.

This is our 6th coach. There is always something to fix and every time it goes into the shop, the bill seems to start at $1,000.
This isn't just this coach, it's been every one. I watch others in this forum and see all the issues they have with theirs.
Yes there will be proponents for owning a coach that will say they will spend minimal on repairs but they are lucky.
These beasts need maintenance and the cost to maintain them, unless you are a heavy duty mechanic with $20,000 in tools in your compartment, or you are fairly well off financially, you are going to spend $$$$.
It's not a matter of if, it's a matter of when.
There are definite pluses to owning a coach, like DW making you a sandwich while driving, or using the facilities while moving, but you the driver can't. I'm sure I will be able to walk the additional 40' to use my 5er once I pull over to stretch my legs anyway!

Personally, I have to have a truck for work. Currently I tow my truck 4 down. However, for me, I'm maintaining 2 powered vehicles. My truck I can write off the expenses. The coach I can't. The coach is the most costly of the two.
I've done the pros and cons. For me the truck and 5er wins.
Let's assume you don't do any maintenance yourself on the coach cause you're not a heavy duty mechanic.
Oil change truck $85.
Oil change coach $400
Tires truck $1500
Tires coach $3500
Air filter truck $59
Air filter coach $300
Brake job truck $600
Brake job coach $3000
Fuel pump truck $1100
Fuel pump coach $4500

Yes the coach is good for quick overnight stops but I see people with 5ers stopping at Walmarts overnight and not setting up.
The only time saver is setting the jacks and I plan on my 5er having auto leveling.
As for fuel saving by having a smaller toad as a driver? I'm saving fuel using my diesel truck towing over the poor mileage my coach gets towing so I spend a bit more as the truck becomes my driver. To me that's a wash.
Insurance is way cheaper for the truck and 5er compared to the coach and toad. Likely half. AND I don't need a $5000 3 year warranty for the coach when it breaks down.

That's just my opinion and my analysis. There will be lots of those for and against but the cost factor is my driving force behind my decision. There is little costly repairs on a 5er and my truck will come with a 3 year bumper to bumper warranty for 60,000 kms and 100,000 kms on powertrain.

No brainer for me!
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Old 08-21-2015, 04:46 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dogpatch View Post
We are fed up with the coach and the costs of maintaining it. We have ours up for sale currently and as soon as she's gone we are buying a new F350 Diesel truck and are currently looking for a 5er.

This is our 6th coach. There is always something to fix and every time it goes into the shop, the bill seems to start at $1,000.
This isn't just this coach, it's been every one. I watch others in this forum and see all the issues they have with theirs.
Yes there will be proponents for owning a coach that will say they will spend minimal on repairs but they are lucky.
These beasts need maintenance and the cost to maintain them, unless you are a heavy duty mechanic with $20,000 in tools in your compartment, or you are fairly well off financially, you are going to spend $$$$.
It's not a matter of if, it's a matter of when.
There are definite pluses to owning a coach, like DW making you a sandwich while driving, or using the facilities while moving, but you the driver can't. I'm sure I will be able to walk the additional 40' to use my 5er once I pull over to stretch my legs anyway!

Personally, I have to have a truck for work. Currently I tow my truck 4 down. However, for me, I'm maintaining 2 powered vehicles. My truck I can write off the expenses. The coach I can't. The coach is the most costly of the two.
I've done the pros and cons. For me the truck and 5er wins.
Let's assume you don't do any maintenance yourself on the coach cause you're not a heavy duty mechanic.
Oil change truck $85.
Oil change coach $400
Tires truck $1500
Tires coach $3500
Air filter truck $59
Air filter coach $300
Brake job truck $600
Brake job coach $3000
Fuel pump truck $1100
Fuel pump coach $4500

Yes the coach is good for quick overnight stops but I see people with 5ers stopping at Walmarts overnight and not setting up.
The only time saver is setting the jacks and I plan on my 5er having auto leveling.
As for fuel saving by having a smaller toad as a driver? I'm saving fuel using my diesel truck towing over the poor mileage my coach gets towing so I spend a bit more as the truck becomes my driver. To me that's a wash.
Insurance is way cheaper for the truck and 5er compared to the coach and toad. Likely half. AND I don't need a $5000 3 year warranty for the coach when it breaks down.

That's just my opinion and my analysis. There will be lots of those for and against but the cost factor is my driving force behind my decision. There is little costly repairs on a 5er and my truck will come with a 3 year bumper to bumper warranty for 60,000 kms and 100,000 kms on powertrain.

No brainer for me!
If the type of RV purchasers bought was based on cost, nobody would own a Class A. At this point in my life, I'm more concerned with what I'm going to do with my purchase and if I'll enjoy it. Cost is way down the list of what is important.
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Old 08-21-2015, 05:17 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dogpatch View Post
That's just my opinion and my analysis. There will be lots of those for and against but the cost factor is my driving force behind my decision. There is little costly repairs on a 5er and my truck will come with a 3 year bumper to bumper warranty for 60,000 kms and 100,000 kms on powertrain.

No brainer for me!

DogPatch if you already need to have a truck it does make the decision much easier, as long as I needed a truck and could write off the majority of it's cost and expenses, I couldn't justify having a Class A. Now that we are retired it sure is nice being a tourist in the coach and the Jeep Liberty.

A lot of variables for sure.
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