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Old 04-17-2014, 10:56 AM   #29
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we were wowed by the interior of the Georgetown XL Black Diamonds but I really do not want gas.
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Old 04-17-2014, 02:54 PM   #30
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Sorry to disagree but we would never buy new again unless we were truly commented to it for the rest of our RV lives. The deprecation is murder on these units gas or diesel.
To each their own. He asked "what would YOU do?", so I told him.
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Old 04-17-2014, 03:16 PM   #31
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Most DPs shorter than 36' are twitchy handlers due to the drive wheels being in front of the motor and therefore limited chassis length. Even at 36' there are only a few with long chassis. Of course you should test drive what you buy to make sure it handles well.

I volunteer for the CA State Parks. Even with 35' coach many if not most of the CA State Parks will have length rules too short for you. 30' works for a lot more CA S parks. The State Park I work at has not changed much in the last 50 years. Many of the buildings and trails are from the CCC days. On the other hand tonight my wife and I are camped at an Arizona State Park at a very modern facility and huge sites with water and 50 amps electric. Our rate at this facility is less than the park I work at in CA for dry camping.

As far as gas or diesel. Test drive a bunch of them and then buy the one you like.

I did drive a couple of FRED diesel motorhomes back 5 or so years. They were in the 32' - 34' range. Seems like Tiffin made one of those with a nice long chassis for good handling. Of course with the diesel motor in front you hear it more.

Country Coach made several models in 36' that are very good motorhomes. Those are DPs.
Many manufactures now make as small as 28 fts Diesel pushers and front engine diesel, good investment for those who wants small MH but preferred diesel engine.
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Old 04-17-2014, 03:33 PM   #32
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Thanks for the replies. Yeah we're go-ers and don't stay in one place too long. Maybe a day or two then move on.

What's a realistic budget for maintenance on a DP? Say 10k miles a year? I'm guesstimating 2k-2.5k a year not including anything major like a tranny
Preventative maintenance for oil on motor, generator, and aqua hot on mine at Cummins Coach Care is about $800 per year.

Extended Warranties are available whether you purchase from an individual or dealer, age/mileage are two main factors.

Another important consideration for you should be how long you anticipate having the unit? Another consideration should be performance, I have never seen a gas unit out perform a diesel, but if that isn't a major issue for you I wouldn't be concerned. I have been passed by gas motorhomes on occasion, but driving 70+ mph in any of these is not what I am attempting to do. I don't recall ever being passed on a step grade, but if it does happen no big deal.

Another issue is topography and will you be towing something? I would not be able to tow 10,000 lbs with a gas, but that may not be an issue for you.

Good luck!
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Old 04-17-2014, 09:18 PM   #33
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In a similar dilemma 4 years ago we bought a Tiffin Allegro Bay FRED. Same Cummins 340 hp diesel as some pushers. 9 mpg. Not a pusher ride but you can get diesel advantages for just a little more than gasser price. 30,000 miles later we are very happy. The Bays were very well appointed for their day. There are several floor plans 34-36 ft.
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Old 04-17-2014, 10:02 PM   #34
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Here is my opinion, for what it is worth. In over 53 years of RVing we have owned several DP's and gassers. Our last two have both been gas, with the Ford V-10 engine. We have owned DP's from the 37-40 foot range down to a front engine 26 foot 2009 Navion. I admit that the ride, handling, fuel mileage, and overall quietness was better in MOST of the diesel units, compared with the gassers. Sometime the longer units prevented us from going to some locations that we wanted to visit, but not very often.

The Vista 30T that we have now is an exception. It is relatively quiet and provides a very comfortable ride. Gas mileage, pulling a 2003 Honda CR-V, averages about 8.3 MPG. Further, I will admit that the vast majority of my driving is about 55 MPH. All the diesel units got better fuel mileage and most had more power; however, upkeep on the diesels was considerably more than the gas units.

Everything costs more for the diesel units. They have much larger capacity oil systems, (one of mine with a Cummins held 15 or 16 quarts) both fuel and air filters are much higher than those for gas units, and the larger tires are more expensive. I also found that labor costs were usually a bit more. Of course, the diesel engines will have a lot more longevity than the gas engines and that is a definite plus. Resale prices of the diesel units is probably a bit better also.

My advice.....drive several and decide for yourself which you prefer. And just remember.... we only go around once so be sure and enjoy what ever you buy.
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Old 04-17-2014, 10:04 PM   #35
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I just bought my 1998 Holiday Rambler with 60k miles on it. I looked at everything from very nice used 2002 Pace Arrows to American eagles. This is my 4th coach and I'm home. It's 34' and has the 275 Cummins with the 6 speed Allison. I had a Gear Vendors behind my 454 on my previous coach. This baby flies and I can whisper to my wife when we're tooling down the road at 65 mph.

I was going to get a 40' footer but I recalled how many times I wished my Pace Arrow was smaller than 34'. This HR at 34' and a 14' slide is perfect for us. Mostly what we would have gained going longer, in my opinion, was a couple feet for a washer/dryer.

I spent 35k. I could have gone hog wild for 50k. One thing above all else that sold me on the DP is the longevity. I've had 454's before in boats and trucks, they grenade at any time above 80k miles, most don't, it's rare, but they aren't known for long miles.

I have a diesel with an aluminum roof. No more delamination issues and no motor worries. We love this baby!
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Old 04-22-2014, 01:30 AM   #36
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So after driving and looking around a bunch, we really liked the Fleetwood Terra SE 31C or the Storm 32H (same thing just diff name).
31' length is a huge bonus, since we'll be able to possibly squeak in some 30' sites.
sleeps 8 easy, good for a growing family with kids.
We're getting the option of the additional rear dinette / convertible bunk beads.. Perfect for the "kids table".

There really arn't any older models in this size that have this kind of floor-plan without buying new, And all the used private sellers I contacted are so upside down in their RV's they want WAAAYY to much $ for them.
So wife and I decided to bite the bullet and we'll take a hit on depreciation buying new.

MSRP is 106k ish for a 2014. Local Dealer wants 83k... I feel like I can get them down closer to 80... (closer to my orig budget).
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Old 04-22-2014, 03:49 PM   #37
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Dixie had the storm advertised for 79
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Old 04-22-2014, 04:07 PM   #38
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What "I would do" is first buy used, between depreciation, and "working out the bugs" I'd rather a 2 year old unit. Plus, my embarrassingly enthusiastic negotiating skills will have much greater influence over a private seller than a dealership.

There is no right or wrong answer for choosing gas or diesel. If I was mainly driving on flat land, or spending most of my time using it parked rather than moving I'd go with gas.

If my budget allowed me to easily cover the multiple additional costs associated with diesel (tires, maintenance, fuel) than I'd consider the additional comfort and power advantage of diesel was justified.

Of course since you want a rig under 35' you may be forced into a gasser anyway, unless floor plan choices isn't much of an issue for you.
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Old 04-22-2014, 04:19 PM   #39
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We bought a new Winnie Adventurer (gas) because we love the floor plan. No regrets. Get the floor plan you like and don't worry about the type of fuel.
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Old 04-22-2014, 10:14 PM   #40
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Well we are going with the terra se 31c. Worked out a number with the local dealer that we both are comfortable with. Has the floor plan size and features we want. And is not found in used models this size. Actually drove pretty well. I will be insulating the doghouse/engine bay with sound deadining material tho. 70-75mph at 2000 rpm is nice. But hill climbs are a bit louder. That's really my only gripe. Handling was pretty decent.
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Old 04-22-2014, 10:34 PM   #41
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Well we are going with the terra se 31c. Worked out a number with the local dealer that we both are comfortable with. Has the floor plan size and features we want. And is not found in used models this size. Actually drove pretty well. I will be insulating the doghouse/engine bay with sound deadining material tho. 70-75mph at 2000 rpm is nice. But hill climbs are a bit louder. That's really my only gripe. Handling was pretty decent.

Great looking rig. Enjoy. Do you have to order or do they have one on the lot?
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Old 04-22-2014, 10:45 PM   #42
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As the owner of two gas units and now we are on our second diesel it's no brainer, it was embarrassing driving our gas unit towing our towd going up a hill at 20 mph with 40 foot DP passing us like we are standing still towing an Escalade. Upgraded to the DP and although we still slow down on hills it's only 5 to 10 mph instead of 40 to 50 mph for the gasser. As far as reliability goes the diesel can't be beat, maintenance is more expensive yes but you won't have to worry about replacing an engine or tranny like in a gasser. Gas drive trains are under powered for this type of unit, in a motor home the gas engines have to work their heart out and if you don't maintain them they are lucky to make 100,000 miles. You will have some major expenses somewhere down the road in a gas unit. The fuel economy is better with diesel, 9 to 13 mpg in allot of cases where you will be lucky to get 6 or 7 mpg with gas. The big thing is the power if you are pulling a towd any distance you will want the diesel power. If you maintain a diesel properly it will last forever and give you allot more miles of trouble free motoring. Gassers just don't last and in the long run cost more in "Repairs" So in my book the diesel wins every time. There is a reason they don't put gas engines in semi's, they just won't cut it and the diesels the use can go over a million miles when properly maintained.
Hope I made my point, just my opinion working in the mechanic's trade..........

Gosh, sure was a funny read. Thanks for the laughs. Keep drinking that diesel cool aid. I find it embarrassing when a fellow rv'r is proud of having their noses so high. You don't have to drive a diesel to be excepted. Now the OP asked for opinions and this is yours, and mine is below.

This line is great " Gassers just don't last and in the long run cost more in "Repairs"". That is absolute bologna! And this one too " As far as reliability goes the diesel can't be beat, maintenance is more expensive yes but you won't have to worry about replacing an engine or tranny like in a gasser." Again a whole bunch of horse poop. Let's not overlook this one "Gas drive trains are under powered for this type of unit, in a motor home the gas engines have to work their heart out and if you don't maintain them they are lucky to make 100,000 miles. You will have some major expenses somewhere down the road in a gas unit." Haha I sold my v10 C with well over 100,000 trouble free miles, nothing more than a few $50 oil changes. This one is funny too "The fuel economy is better with diesel, 9 to 13 mpg in allot of cases where you will be lucky to get 6 or 7 mpg with gas." Gotta love it, I see 8-9 towing a four door jeep, and 10-12 not towing and depending on terrain and speed, point is diesel costs more and you will never recoup your cost in mileage savings. And this one "There is a reason they don't put gas engines in semi's, they just won't cut it and the diesels the use can go over a million miles when properly maintained." Uh v10's are finding themselves in some big boy trucks now a days. And trust me, there are enough v10 fleet vehicles with mileage just like that.

Yes it's your opinion. Just like I still refer to Pluto as a planet.
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