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Old 05-13-2012, 10:19 PM   #15
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Moving plumbing is not a problem. I have a 12 year old motorhome, I did the car fax, and the previous owner never had a problem with the plumbing. I went with the 40 ft because the length to wheelbase ratio was better.

I absolutely love our Holiday Rambler Endeavor and would recommend to anyone. Streetside slides, with moving plumbing.
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Old 05-14-2012, 05:50 AM   #16
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If you want the best bang for the buck, look at the less expensive manufacturers (i.e. not Country Coach, Foretravel or even Newmar, etc (they are all very good coaches but they are also all higher price points)).

I'd look at Bounder Diesel or Discovery or Tradewinds (or other National RV coaches)
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Old 05-14-2012, 10:54 AM   #17
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Another consideration, check the manufacture date on the tires. Coach tires are expensive no matter which coach you purchase. Also find out what kind of service/support the manufacturer provides. There are coaches out there where the manufacturer is out of business. We have had 2 coaches from Tiffin, and two coaches from Fleetwood RV. Both have provided excellent service and support.

If you look at Holiday Rambler (they make good coaches), be aware that friends of ours who each have Endeavors, have run into problems with storage. Both coaches have a curb side slide and the overhead compartments in both coaches only have about half the storage space that the compartment doors suggest. For some reason HR built part of the slide into the compartments. If you're fulltiming that could be a problem.
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Old 05-14-2012, 11:18 AM   #18
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We chose to go with a shorter chassis with more slides because it fits into the places we like to go. Many have a length limit that would not allow a 40' rig.

We haven't had a problem with the kitchen sink being on a slide but sure wouldn't want one with the toilet on one.
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Old 05-14-2012, 12:09 PM   #19
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Steve- Best bang for the buck is:
a) used, and
b) something that makes the wife excited to go places with you.

That said, we had the choice of CC or Alpine. Difference in driving was amazing, the Alpine was way steadier and easier to drive. Alpines mostly have DS kitchen/couch slide (the 38' model has PS kitchen, not sliding). I had an issue w/sliding plumbing, fixed it by installing more slide friendly tubing, voila.
You'll also want to consider:
~ rear vs side radiator. rear collects blow-by, lube cast off, etc, and lots of road dirt, meaning regular maintenance req'd to keep the radiator cooling properly. Also rear is more prone to throwing a rock & puncturing radiator.
~ height of air intake, higher is better for less sand, dust intake
~ Cummins vs Cat- 70% of installed base is Cummins, the rest is Cat, Detroit, & others, so way more common to find Cummins experienced service shops.
~ if looking at CC, check to see if it has a PTO (off trans) hydraulic pump & if the "wet kit" has been retrofitted (this was an NHTSA safety recall that died when CC corporate died). Kits are available & all info is readily available on internet if you wind up needing it. Can run $1-2k iirc depending on how much spline wear has happened; can cause up to $30k damage if ignored, and you lose power steering & radiator fan cooling.
~ if an orphan coach (CC, Alpine, Alpha See-Ya, etc.) check to see if technical info to provide all service is readily available. CC's records were purchased by Oregon Motorcoach Center in Eugene OR, WRV's stuff (Alpine) has been accumulated on the Owner's club website, don't know about Alpha.
~ cheaper coaches have a lot of particle board which isn't the best for longevity.
~ check engine access for belt changes, oil changes, etc., some (especially rear radiator rigs) are crazy hard to get to everything
~ age of tires previously mentioned is a cost thing, make sure to prorate tire cost when dickering on price
~ leveling: hydraulic jacks will allow level camping on more unlevel sites than air leveling. Its surprising to me how prevalent out of level sites are; folks w/air leveling have to ask for nearly level sites and they are not always available.
~ manuals & service records- the former can be hard to accumulate if not included w/coach and not compiled online; the latter can be very informative for potential purchaser. Unscrupulous sellers toss the stuff so as not to inform buyers "too" much. There should be a large stack of manuals w/every coach, from engine/trans to leveling system, gen, inverter, etc. on to microwave & TVs. Super pain in the neck if you get zero'd out on manuals.
~ consider a pre-purchase "survey" like is done on yachts (not unlike a home inspection) if this is your first DP, done by a qualified tech. Starts at roof, includes a full undercarriage inspection, runs all systems (gen, inverter, water, A/C's, slide seals, awnings, etc.), probably cost $3-400, takes 3-4 hours, likely to find some issues you'll want to attend to and maybe that involve cost/value.
~ tag axle vs not: tag will steady out the ride on just about any rig. you give up one full side-to-side storage bay in basement. Friend drove a 40' Monaco w/& w/out tag, had to have the tag to like the drive. Tag adds 2 more tires to buy, more gear to maintain, better drive over the road; if brake sticks on tag you get to buy a new tire (seen it happen). Tag allows greater length than 40' which is great, I'd say mandatory on 42-45 feeters.
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Old 05-14-2012, 03:47 PM   #20
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Hi, all your inputs are well taken; each and every point is being recorded on my little notebook. you guys are truly awesome!!

Engineer Mike, thank you for your detailed list - PTO wet kit and HYD pump easily run 1-2 grand, definitely take it into consideration. Side radiator, easy engine access, air vs. hydraulic leveling, full set of manuals and service records... Yeah I am a diyer inclined and I will most likely do maintenance on RV myself, apparently all these are important.

As other members mentioned, aged tires could be a bite - surely we don't want to take the risk riding on hardened rubbers. I am guessing a set of 6 new Michelin 22.5" could be around 2-3 grand...

In past couple days I was talking with a seller at midwest, it's a 00 country coach intrigue 40' with 94kmi. I am thinking 94kmi is slightly higher than what I expected in 50-60kmi range, but it's ok as we know diesel engines like to be driven and 30kmi is nothing (I have driven a diesel car for past 20 years, love it) (thanks "Automobilist" for what you reminded me beware of those very low mileage). The coach looks nice by photo but owner did tell me that there are some minor rusts at bottom. Could it be cuased by driving on salty road in winter? That turms me off a little. I'll wait for his photo on that and see if it's an issue. Nevertheless, PPI is a must for my RV purchase...

Well there are a lot of work to do looks like - more makes models to check out... The good thing is - wherever I go my wife follows me
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Old 05-17-2012, 03:00 PM   #21
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We just purchased a 1998 Newmar Mountain Aire, Single Slide DP, 8.3 Cummins with 325 hp, 65k miles, Spartan chassis, was very well taken care of and only needed a thorough cleaning...We drove many different makes from 1998 to 2002 and kept finding we really liked the Newmar, Monaco Dynasty, and Endeavors...With that said, we took our time and stole this one in our opinion. It was sitting on a car lot of all places, traded in from original owner. I was able to find original owner and he provided valuable information about reliability and maintenance work, plus had all records. The records proved maintenance schedules and the fact no major repair work was ever conducted. We lucked out because the coach had a horrible vibration at speed and the dealer said the rear end was "bad" as much as they could tell...
I agreed to take it in to get it looked at by Spartan (ended up going to Freightliner cause Spartan could not find problem, another story in itself). Come to find out, the ride height was seriously off (by 3 inches) in the rear and the only reason it was a rough ride..
I replaced tires and all fluids, costing me about 4 grand
We bought it for 28k with tax and everything...

We are very happy with it, no it is not brand new but build quality is great and ride is very nice. If you are looking to tow heavy loads or full time, I would get the most CCC and highest GCWR you can get, our GVWR is 32k and GCWR is 42k so plenty for us
Good luck with your hunt, our Newmar Mountain Aire is worth every penny and some in our mind, there are some good deals to be had out there
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Old 05-17-2012, 05:28 PM   #22
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Yep, prejudiced by our good experiences with our 98 American Eagle.

Has IFS, large tankage, one slide.

I cannot figure out why this one is so cheap:

1999 American Eagle By Fleetwood 40VS for Sale - D214NB - PPL Motor Homes

But, that is a whole lot of bang for the buck and meets Deandec's guidance.

Dave
1998 American Eagle 40EVS
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Old 05-17-2012, 06:33 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdlcrazier

As other members mentioned, aged tires could be a bite - surely we don't want to take the risk riding on hardened rubbers. I am guessing a set of 6 new Michelin 22.5" could be around 2-3 grand...
The coach we just purchased needed 6 new tires and ran $3300 installed.....
These was also a very good point made wit buying a more top end unit, used....
Our 8 year old coach still feels new. No squeaks and very solid.
Best of luck
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Old 05-17-2012, 07:27 PM   #24
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There are a number of good coaches out there, but stay away from any of them that are now out of business. A number of companies have gone belly up these few years.

The two companies that really stand out in the industry are Newmar and Tiffin. With these two manufacturers, they have the reputation to take care of you as the customer, even if you are the second or even third owner or more. Only other companies that do this build on Prevost chassis.

Also, don't hold yourself to a full side slide. There has been a number of issues with those on some brands, i.e. roof saging, etc.

Good luck in getting the right unit for you!
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Old 05-17-2012, 09:51 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdlcrazier View Post
in the market for a 36-40' dp. so far having been looking at 98-00 country coach intrigue. it's pricey. wondering should i look at other makes to get the best value out of bucks... any recommendations?
The one that suits you best for the lowest reasonable cost. Similar to an answer I just posted, what do you intend to do?
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Old 05-17-2012, 10:29 PM   #26
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thanks again, just saw these notes... well, i will be retiring this time next year, if no health issues i would like to drive a rv with wife roaming around. will have a lot of driving less likely station in one place for more than 6 months. that being said, a 40 footer with an open floor/a super slide, comfort to drive will do...
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Old 05-17-2012, 10:50 PM   #27
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The 99 American Eagle is not cheap. What are the miles on it?
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Old 05-18-2012, 12:08 AM   #28
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Probably because it's 13 years old, has a very dated interior and only 350hp for a pretty heavy coach. It's only going to get older, more dated, and sure isn't getting more powerful... I think it's a bit high priced.



Quote:
Originally Posted by FormerBoater View Post
Yep, prejudiced by our good experiences with our 98 American Eagle.

Has IFS, large tankage, one slide.

I cannot figure out why this one is so cheap:

1999 American Eagle By Fleetwood 40VS for Sale - D214NB - PPL Motor Homes

But, that is a whole lot of bang for the buck and meets Deandec's guidance.

Dave
1998 American Eagle 40EVS
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