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Old 06-10-2012, 09:45 AM   #1
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Diesel Rules

My DW and I are going to Alaska next summer so we are planning on trading up to a diesel from our current gas RV.
I know there are special things I should know about care and maint. also things about starting and stopping.
The dealer seemed to be void of any details and kind of left me on my own and I would hate to get half way north and have any suprises.
HELP!!

Larry and Rita
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Old 06-10-2012, 10:12 AM   #2
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Well its a hole new world with the diesel as far as you will need warm up and shut down time, bulding air pressure for brakes, suspension, air intake maintenence, brakes inspection, ect. My advice would be to find a dealer willing to take the time to go through all the things with you before taking off.
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Old 06-10-2012, 10:20 AM   #3
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Also before making the move, you may want to read some of the posts in the "Power Train Garage Forums" about engine & transmission breakdowns and the costs to repair.

Made me a believer, and comfortable with our decision to keep our 2000 gas coach.

Good luck with your decision and safe travels...
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Old 06-10-2012, 10:31 AM   #4
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Also before making the move, you may want to read some of the posts in the "Power Train Garage Forums" about engine & transmission breakdowns and the costs to repair.
Don't be scared off by these sorts of statements. Yes, diesels hold more oil (mine uses 36 quarts) so oil changes are more costly. But, for most people, oil gets changed only once a year.

The larger diesel engines are designed for heavy truck applications and have design parameters of >500,000 miles before they require major overhaul. Sure, things can break and can be costly to repair, but that is true of any mechanical device.

A well-maintained diesel and transmission should outlive most RV owners. Some people get into trouble by assuming that they can ignore routine maintenance because the engine is designed to last so long. Not maintaining any machine is a prescription for disaster.
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Old 06-10-2012, 10:33 AM   #5
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Talking

Absolutly and the cost of maintenance alone is quite a bit more with oil and filter cost but the benefits of power, ride and comfort are well worth it if you travel alot.
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Old 06-10-2012, 11:32 AM   #6
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If your coach doesn't have its engine owner/operator manual with it, you can get one online. Cummins owner manuals are available for download through Cummins Quickserve online once you register and enter your Engine Serial Number. It has info on operating your engine.

https://quickserve.cummins.com/qs2/portal/index.html

Freightliner also has their RV Chassis Operator manual available online. Lots of useful info there.
http://freightlinerchassis.com/docum...4711000000.pdf
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Old 06-10-2012, 11:47 AM   #7
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Hi Larry & Rita,
Consider keeping the gas powered coach for the trip to Alaska. Once you return from the trip and still want a diesel, then trade. No sense getting the new to you coach all nicked up with the Alaska trip. There should be plenty of fueling opportunities for either fuel.

In 2005, I was dragged kicking and screaming into a diesel coach. My first coach was in 1978 and all have been gas powered. All I can tell you is to read the manuals and understand the annual maintenance that needs to be done. When driving, do everything slowly. Gas powered coaches accelerate. Diesel powered coaches gain momentum. Good luck with your decision and travels.
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Old 06-10-2012, 12:00 PM   #8
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My first coach was a 1992 Airstream 36 foot Landyacht with a Chevy 454. Absolutely no power going up hill towing anything.

Switched to a 40 foot Monaco with a Cummins ISC 350HP. LOTS of storage and plenty of power for towing a 30 foot trailer up anything from Florida to Alaska.

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Old 06-10-2012, 12:31 PM   #9
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You might want to buy a newer diesel. We bought a really old one, the engine, tranny, and generator are good but we had no maintenance records so we felt it needed all the maintenance on everything up to date. It passed inspection before we did anything to it so that was good. Also it had sat for 5 years at least we could tell by the inspection sticker.

It is basically a good motorhome but we are having to do everything to bring all the maintenance up to date. We also recoated the roof with Liquid Roof, updated all the AC's, replaced the old brittle domes, and added stationary satellite.

But if you get one like this get it for a good price as it will cost a lot to bring it up if you can't do a lot of work yourself. Our problem is my husband is working away and doesn't have time to do but some of it.

I thought I had everything done and we have one more issue that popped up with the generator. I hope this will take care of the needed maintenance for awhile. In retrospect we likely should have bought newer but a great deal of this would likely have needed to be done anyway or we would have had to pay a premium for one that is up todate.

Do I think we have a good motorhome? Yes, I'm just frustrated waiting on the work to be done as I'm pressed for time right now, I just need to be patient. I did have a gas Winnie 2005 before, 29 ft and I this 92 Eagle 38 ft is going to ride a lot better then it did. I like the semis not blowing me around on the road and its a good ride for sure. I have to get used to the air brakes that's different but even with getting this one up to date I don't think we will go back to a gas one. Just our next one will be some newer and have a slide or two. Whatever you decide I'm sure you will be happy but I'm leaning toward diesel.
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Old 06-10-2012, 01:06 PM   #10
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I would suggest checking with a commercial driving school if you are new to diesel's and air brakes etc. Even if you take a short air brake course it will give you an insight into how everything works and how to spot a problem before it becomes unsafe. It will be money well spent. Good luck and happy travels.
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Old 06-10-2012, 01:25 PM   #11
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you already have far greater knowledge about a Class A than my DW and I had. We went from a pop up to a 39 ' DP. She was 2003 and needed upgrading after many short trips and a lot of elbow grease, not to mention after market shocks, engine maintenance, gear box, and through inspection and many fixes. We took a 1000 K trip. Everything worked great. The air brakes were never a problem adjusting to, just have to acclimate yourself to the systems and the coach. Recently traded for larger new coach and we are loving life. We can drive for 6 to 8 hours and still set up camp and get a good nights rest. Just take it slow at first your DP will be a wise and lasting fun machine!! Happy sailing!!
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Old 06-10-2012, 04:27 PM   #12
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Hi Larry & Rita,

In 2005, I was dragged kicking and screaming into a diesel coach. My first coach was in 1978 and all have been gas powered. All I can tell you is to read the manuals and understand the annual maintenance that needs to be done. When driving, do everything slowly. Gas powered coaches accelerate. Diesel powered coaches gain momentum. Good luck with your decision and travels.


Gary,

I'm curious why you didn't want a diesel coach? Most folks aspire to owning one, and for those of us who tow, they are necessary.

Our experience with owning a few different RV's has pretty much been positive, and very positive for our two diesel pushers.

As far as driving, our Journey has far better acceleration and braking compared to the two gas Bounders we had. Driving a diesel is simple; push on the right pedal to go, push on the left pedal to stop. All motorhomes stop & start more slowly than a passenger car. Concerning "warm up", most diesels take a couple minutes or so to build up air pressure when cold, that's all the warm up the engine needs as well. When warm, and it already has a full head of air, the engine is warm too. No need for an extended idle time.
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Old 06-10-2012, 05:34 PM   #13
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All I have ever had is a DP. It's a 93 Airstream Land Yacht. Goes anywhere I want to go as fast I need to go. 84,000 miles which is meaningless in the diesel world. Go ahead and spend the extra money to go diesel. And never forget that as long as there a restaraunt nearby with a grease pit, you will never run out of fuel. And the best part is that it is usually free.
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Old 06-11-2012, 05:54 AM   #14
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...And never forget that as long as there a restaraunt nearby with a grease pit, you will never run out of fuel. And the best part is that it is usually free.
What???

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