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Old 02-23-2017, 06:21 PM   #1
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Advice on First Motorhome

Good evening members. I am sure this question I am about to ask has been asked many times and I hope I am not frustrating members with an old question. I am in the market for my first motorhome. Settling on a class A diesel pusher. I am looking in the 2006-2008 year model. The advice I need is what engine do you suggest? Cummins or Cat? When I ask what you suggest, that means service on the road if something goes wrong. I hate troubles and to me service is more important then about anything. I am in the market for a 35-36' coach so please help with engine suggestions. Thanks guys and look forward to your experience.

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Old 02-23-2017, 07:40 PM   #2
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Our only experience was with Cummins. We had no problems getting service while full-timing and traveling constantly. We didn't need repairs though but there are plenty of Cummins facilities out there.

Full-timed for 16 Years . . . Back in S&B Again
Traveled 8 yr in a 2004 Newmar Dutch Star 40' Diesel
& 8 yr in a 33' Travel Supreme 5th wheel
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Old 02-23-2017, 07:56 PM   #3
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I'm gonna answer with a twist here. Both Cat and Cummins, if you avoid specific known problem engines are both good. However, I would recommend you look for a side radiator in a coach. You mention service on the road if something goes wrong. A side radiator gives you much better access to the engine, belts, etc than does a rear radiator. A broken belt on a side radiator is a 15 minute fix providing you have a spare (we do). A broken belt on a rear radiator may cost as much as $900.00, PLUS the belt, PLUS the tow bill, PLUS the radiator fluid if they change it after they drain it out to remove the radiator to get to the belts . . . PLUS maybe a day or two lost time until a shop can work you in. . .

and before someone brings it up, yes I realize that it does ADD one more item to the mix, the fan propulsion system, be it electric, or hydraulic. That being said, I think a side radiator offers more advantages than disadvantages. . . . Something to think about. Hope this helps!
Scot & Laura Kellersberger
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Old 02-23-2017, 08:20 PM   #4
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Talking about the side and rear radiators, are you still talking about diesel pushers with both of these? As you can tell I am new to this and I am trying to learn as much as possible.. Thanks for all the help
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Old 02-23-2017, 08:28 PM   #5
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I asked this question to a Diesel Mech a couple months ago.

I know a guy who is a Diesel Mechanic and also works on many Motorhomes.

Like you, I often wondered the same thing about Diesel engines and since he told me the has worked on many DP'ers I asked him the question.

"If I were looking to purchase another DP, Which diesel would you recommend?" and his reply to me was: "I'd go with a Cummins"
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Old 02-23-2017, 08:31 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Mountieman View Post
Talking about the side and rear radiators, are you still talking about diesel pushers with both of these? As you can tell I am new to this and I am trying to learn as much as possible.. Thanks for all the help
Yes the side or rear radiator is for a DP.
Ours has a side radiator with the Hydraulic (oil) motors (2) for the cooling fan.
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Old 02-23-2017, 08:41 PM   #7
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Its a big world of choices out there and I guess there is no one clear choice decision but it seems to me their would be more cummins mechanics then cat mechanics on the road. Meaning more Ram dealerships then Cat dealerships. I dont try and think about the bad things but I do try to think about them before they happen. You guys are a lot of help and I do appreciate the feedback. Experience goes a long ways.
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Old 02-23-2017, 08:50 PM   #8
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Side radiator is the only way to go. I changed my serpentine belt in about 2min. plus you can see the motor. If you run into problems the price of service is a lot lower a lot, plus most are higher end coaches. Love my air leveling. If you are thinking of a Cummins check the links in the Cummins section under (wrist Pins) 05 and 06 400hp and stay away from the 600 and 650 Cummins. Higher the end sometimes bigger the problems. Cats have the HEUI pump to think about (clean oil and fuel)
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Old 02-23-2017, 09:03 PM   #9
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In that year range earlier is better (no emissions/dpf/etc...) I know it started around 2007.
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Old 02-24-2017, 05:32 AM   #10
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I am on my way this morning to look at a 2006 Newmar 36'. It does have the cat engine but atleast when I look at it I will have some things to know to look for and then come back here and tell you guys what I see. Then get advice..
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Old 02-24-2017, 05:14 PM   #11
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The man canceled on me this morning and said his wife was sick and could not meet me. We are going to meet again Wednesday or Thursday. He said it had a 330 hp cat engine. Its 36'. Is this enough HP or is it not?
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Old 02-24-2017, 05:20 PM   #12
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GVW is 26,000 and has a 6 speed Allison
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Old 02-24-2017, 05:48 PM   #13
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I'm surprised no one has yet mentioned the obvious----pick the coach you want! Cats and Cummins have been around forever because they are extremely reliable.

Find the coach you like and can afford, then get it checked out completely The brand of engine is totally unimportant.

The answer to the 330 HP question is yes, that size is fine. Actually our 39 ft Newmar has a 330 Cummins, and it's fine.

Tom & Jan ---- Westwing43
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Old 02-24-2017, 05:57 PM   #14
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I have a 2000 Allegro Bus with a 300 hp Cat 3126. It is enough to get me a speeding ticket and I pull a 24' Cargo trailer. I think that the 330 C-7 in 2006 was into the up grade Environmental stuff. I stayed away from them. Then again to go with a later model coach there is not choice about the Evro. crap. Bottom line 330 horses should e enough for your weight. Post yur question on the Cat forum.

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