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Old 04-07-2016, 09:14 PM   #71
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Went big first time

We thought about an RV on and off for years. Now we are close to retirement, so we decided not to start smaller and move up. We are lucky to have friends who have RV'D for years moving up as they went. They all have dies pushers and we decided to go that direction. We bought a 45' 2011 Entegra Cornerstone. We did many of the this suggestions above about inspecting the RV, negotiating, etc. Friends were very helpful too. Experience is valuable. Consider one of the comprehensive 3rd party warranties to ease any concerns about repair costs on a used vehicle. We bought from a dealer and got wall to wall instructions on systems and operation. They even gave me about 3 hrs driving orientation. We used it frequently last year, taking longer trips each time as our confidence improved. Had a blast! The amenities in a 45 ' rig pamper us. No regrets and are getting ready for our 2016 year. So go for the size and budget that fits your personal preferences.
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Old 04-07-2016, 09:29 PM   #72
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Wow! Lots and lots of good advice here. Enough to fill a book!

My Two pieces of advice. 1) Look for at least a year before you buy. 2) Find one by original owner....honest, records and in love with his Motorhome..... and sorry to sell it. Good luck. Rook
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Old 04-07-2016, 11:15 PM   #73
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peterson View Post
"Irregardless"? Is that a word? What does that mean?

Is that a combination of regardless and irrespective?
Yes.

Unfortunately, it's in the dictionary, so it's legal to use. Makes the teeth grate, though.

Really not much different than insure, and ensure. Insure is used far more often than the correct word, when "making certain" of something.
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Old 04-08-2016, 01:28 AM   #74
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First Time Buyer Mistakes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Airlifter View Post
12V. Since I am currently shopping for a used DP, I was wondering how you arrived at $10K for the first 1-2 years maintenance budget?

As with any used vehicle, it is difficult to foresee every maintenance issue. The more meticulous the inspection you have done, the fewer surprises. How much those unforeseen items cost will depend heavily on how much you are willing/able to do yourself.

For example, I had a steel bracket on the engine crack this last trip. The part plus shipping would have cost about $200 plus labor at $125 per hour. One to two hours to remove/install, plus time to diagnose the problem in the first place. I Googled and diagnosed the problem myself, then I talked to a guy who knows a guy who knows a guy and I removed the part, had it welded back together for $20, and reinstalled it myself. Thus a $500 maintenance item turned into $20 plus a few hours of my time.

For an oil change (15,000 miles or one year) I have been quoted between $200 and $400. Another $100+ for the generator. Tires were $3300 for six. Tires will last from seven to ten years depending on make, usage, storage environment and who you talk to. At a ten year life, that is a minimum of $330 per year, whether you use the coach or not.

Every part on every vehicle will break. The only question is when. Next week or thirty years from now? As someone else mentioned in this thread, his inexperience meant that he had to replace the roof for thousands of dollars. A roof leak is something you just cannot ignore. In my case, I had to have several dual pane windows resealed ($250 each), a wheel bearing seal replaced ($425), chassis work to replace air valves, air bags, etc. ($3500). Full set of batteries ($900). Numerous miscellaneous part replacements and house upgrades with labor provided by me. Other shops would have charged as much as double these numbers. If something like the turbo boost goes, you are looking at significant cost.

A number of third-party companies offer extended warranties. There are a number of discussion threads here on which is best. Look into these and be aware of the costs, what is and is not covered, and which vehicles they will cover and up to what age of vehicle.

The figure of $10,000 for maintenance is just a best guess based on personal experience. Your results will vary, and if you luck out, then you will have money left over for fuel, campsites and maybe even a set of those double recliners.
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Old 04-08-2016, 06:25 AM   #75
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My experience was that I lost a lot of money going from trailers, to 5ths to gas class A and then to DP. I wished I had stretched and bought a nice as possible used class A DP. Your budget is your own business but if you are thinking at all that you'd like to be in a DP, then I would say you will end up there sooner or later. Try to buy a "brand name" still in business unit and I think it would be a smarter move than loosing money "working up the RV chain" like I did! jmo mark
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Old 04-08-2016, 07:03 AM   #76
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Treat it like a new "bricks and sticks" home. Cover yourself by getting a pre-purchase inspection from a certified NRVIA (NRVIA) inspector. And, if it's motorized (especially a Class A DP) also consider having the NRVIA inspector pull samples and get an get analyses on the drive line and generator: (engine oil, engine coolant, transmission fluid, generator oil and generator coolant).
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Old 04-08-2016, 08:41 AM   #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peterson View Post
"Irregardless"? Is that a word? What does that mean?

Is that a combination of regardless and irrespective?

Non-standard usage, although still accepted.

For those who have difficulty understanding complex words, I will attempt to limit my posts to words they will understand. For example, words like 'NO"!

See:


Irregardless | Definition of Irregardless by Merriam-Webster
Usage Discussion of irregardless

Irregardless originated in dialectal American speech in the early 20th century. Its fairly widespread use in speech called it to the attention of usage commentators as early as 1927. The most frequently repeated remark about it is that “there is no such word.” There is such a word, however. It is still used primarily in speech, although it can be found from time to time in edited prose. Its reputation has not risen over the years, and it is still a long way from general acceptance. Use regardless instead.
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Old 04-08-2016, 11:35 AM   #78
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The first thing I had to do when I started looking five years ago was narrow my choices. After research, looking at coaches and going to shows, I decided I wanted a four/five year old DP around 40 ft from either Newmar or Tiffin. Dutch star or Allegro bus. There are tons of other good brands out there, I just had to narrow it or spend all my time looking. In 2012 I settled on an '08 Allegro Bus from a local big used RV dealer. The price seemed fair and the coach was in good shape. Not that things didn't go wrong, but that happens with any coach. After a couple years I went to an RV show and found a new Allegro Bus that I had to have.(Note to self, don't go to RV shows). So I traded up and have 20,000 miles on my 2014 and have not been sorry.
Some of the things I found important: my new coach is only 38 ft but has a 450 hp Cummins. It is fast and maneuverable. It is all electric, no propane, Aqua hot for water heater. Residential fridge. Full shower and double sink in the bathroom. The generator is 10K. Heated floors(not essential but very nice). Three zone roof top AC units plus cab( I mostly travel in the South in the summer so AC is important). Mine has Villa furniture, I preferred the Flexsteel in the old coach. One thing my new coach has is a Mobile - Eye. I disconnected it as it constantly caused engine fault lights.
Some other things you should consider is how/where will you store your RV.(I pay $100 mo for three side shed w/110 AC) Are you going to tow? Toy trailer, flat tow, dolly. Not all cars can be towed flat. I have a jeep because they tow great. $1500 or so for base plate and tow bars and related features and hook up and go.
Good luck to you, it's a great, fun thing to do.
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Old 04-08-2016, 11:54 AM   #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TwelveVolt View Post
Excellent point. We spoke to a Monaco rep at a show about a ten year old coach and he made it clear that the coach had been built two Monaco's ago and good luck with that. We bought an American Coach by Fleetwood and have had excellent customer support from the manufacturer. Only once did anyone point out that our coach was built by the "previous" Fleetwood.

Do you want/need a manufacturer backing the product, or are you comfortable with just a user network to rely on for support?

Do you have a local reliable and recommended mechanic who knows that particular engine and chassis? Is parts availability an issue? Are drawings and schematics available?

I'm really surprised that a Monaco rep would answer in that fashion. We have an '03 Monaco with over 100k on the clock. Monaco/REV Group continues to provide excellent tech and parts support. A Holiday Rambler owners group sponsors a maintenance session in the Elkhart area every spring and each of the owners of the Monaco brand has provided $$$ support as well as techs and parts. Most of the coaches in attendance are products of the original Monaco.
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Old 04-08-2016, 01:15 PM   #80
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I'm a big believer in buying the highest quality used... fill in the blank (car, boat, RV, etc.) and it has served me well and allowed me to own things I never could have afforded to purchase new. I also thoroughly enjoy doing my own work and realize that is not the case for everyone. Tons of great advice on this forum and so many factors to consider. You're doing exactly the right thing by spending time to research and educate yourself before committing. You'll notice that many of the contributors to this post say they spent 1 1/2 years or more researching what type of unit would be best for them and then a significant amount of time locating a deal they felt good about.

I too spent a couple years researching and educating myself before purchasing our first RV just over a year ago. In hindsight I feel I took all the appropriate steps except for in one MAJOR area; the diesel engine. Although I previously had lots of mechanical experience with gas engines I had zero knowledge of diesels. I bought into (and wanted to believe) the commonly used line "these engines will last a million miles" everyone readily states. I didn't have the engine checked out by a diesel mechanic and ended up having to do a complete in-frame overhaul of the motor shortly after the purchase to the tune of nearly $22,000. Even if I had only done a simple oil analysis I could have avoided this huge expense, or at least had the opportunity to negotiate the purchase price. I'm confident these motors can, in fact, reach a million miles before overhaul, but only if frequently operated and properly maintained. In my case, the coach had been mostly parked for six years and basically neglected. Non-use is the kiss of death for all machinery and RV's of any size are certainly no exception.

The silver lining is that In spite of this I still couldn't be any happier with my MH. I bought it at a low enough price that I'm still way ahead of the game on a cost basis and the Country Coach build quality is exceptional. In the end my advice would be this: Determine the class and design that will best fit the majority of your planned use. Research and shop until you're blue in the face. Spend the money to have the MH thoroughly inspected, especially any systems about which you don't feel completely competent and knowledgeable or willing to work on yourself. Lastly, if you're traveling with a spouse or significant other, make sure the selection meets their expectations for areas and items important to them as buyer's remorse can come in many packages. Above all, have fun!

Best of luck,

Russ


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Old 04-08-2016, 01:41 PM   #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rsponsford View Post
I'm a big believer in buying the highest quality used... fill in the blank (car, boat, RV, etc.) and it has served me well and allowed me to own things I never could have afforded to purchase new. I also thoroughly enjoy doing my own work and realize that is not the case for everyone. Tons of great advice on this forum and so many factors to consider. You're doing exactly the right thing by spending time to research and educate yourself before committing. You'll notice that many of the contributors to this post say they spent 1 1/2 years or more researching what type of unit would be best for them and then a significant amount of time locating a deal they felt good about.

I too spent a couple years researching and educating myself before purchasing our first RV just over a year ago. In hindsight I feel I took all the appropriate steps except for in one MAJOR area; the diesel engine. Although I previously had lots of mechanical experience with gas engines I had zero knowledge of diesels. I bought into (and wanted to believe) the commonly used line "these engines will last a million miles" everyone readily states. I didn't have the engine checked out by a diesel mechanic and ended up having to do a complete in-frame overhaul of the motor shortly after the purchase to the tune of nearly $22,000. Even if I had only done a simple oil analysis I could have avoided this huge expense, or at least had the opportunity to negotiate the purchase price. I'm confident these motors can, in fact, reach a million miles before overhaul, but only if frequently operated and properly maintained. In my case, the coach had been mostly parked for six years and basically neglected. Non-use is the kiss of death for all machinery and RV's of any size are certainly no exception.

The silver lining is that In spite of this I still couldn't be any happier with my MH. I bought it at a low enough price that I'm still way ahead of the game on a cost basis and the Country Coach build quality is exceptional. In the end my advice would be this: Determine the class and design that will best fit the majority of your planned use. Research and shop until you're blue in the face. Spend the money to have the MH thoroughly inspected, especially any systems about which you don't feel completely competent and knowledgeable or willing to work on yourself. Lastly, if you're traveling with a spouse or significant other, make sure the selection meets their expectations for areas and items important to them as buyer's remorse can come in many packages. Above all, have fun!

Best of luck,

Russ


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Sorry for your bad experience. Many if not most of us had the same level of knowledge as you at the beginning of our diesel experience. I was lucky and my now 13 year old coach with just over 100k miles has been trouble free.

I learned fairly early about annual oil/fluid samples and do them regularly now. The major issue that will kill a diesel early, is a problem with the air intake plumbing. It only takes 4-6 Ounces of dust getting past the air filter to "dust" an engine. The only fix is an overhaul. Coach builders are generally all guilty of using a filter designed by Farr (Eco or Ecolite) that can flow either direction and use a throwaway housing. These are barely adequate and each time you change the filter, you must open the intake plumbing. Each time it's opened, there is an opportunity for a air leak on the clean side of the filter.

My next maintenance project is to change to a better filter system.
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Old 04-08-2016, 02:10 PM   #82
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My suggestion for a first class a motor home would be a tiffin allegro breeze 32' diesel pusher. Don't waste your money on any other coach. Family owned and operated . Take a tour of the factory five days a week in redbay alabama. Great reputation. They stand by there product. I own a allegro red dp and we love it.
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Old 04-08-2016, 06:32 PM   #83
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Perhaps a small point in the overall plan, but one that surprised us. Insurance had been quoted based on our home address. When we called to activate the policy, one of the questions was "Where will you store the RV?". Our plan was to travel, but since they needed to fill in the blank on the form, I named a nearby city where we had seen a decent storage facility. The premiums suddenly went up. Presumably a higher crime rate there. We quickly changed it to our home city, where we found a reasonably priced yard.
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Old 04-09-2016, 06:12 AM   #84
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Down to 3.... Newmar 3750?

Thank you everybody for your input. I originally had asked for some help in decision-making but I forgot to add a few things that people are asking regarding the use of the RV we are choosing. We live in South Florida . I am a teacher and my husband is a retired fireman we have two teenage girls that love going places with us. We are middle-income with one fixed and do not have tons of money and are cautious with our purchases which is why we are on this blog and why we are by used . Since I am a teacher we will be going for a couple of months straight out of the year and many weekend and three or four weekend trips to the keys or local places Smoky Mountains North Carolina Etc. We have been looking now for one year so we are not doing this as a spontaneous purchase. Last year we all went in our 2004 30 foot Class C RV and we're gone for 2 months. We went to the Rockies Grand Canyon out west xcetera and my husband is not a new RV but my two daughters and I are. We fell in love even though we were cramped and had a great time pretty much roughing it! We couldn't wait to plan our new trip this year and already have 2017 ready. We have narrowed our search down to three and I will mention why we have chosen them and then please respond with any advice. I have made my decision on a lot of what I have read in the previous blogs where people have given me advice. We have ruled out many models based on Research and not just one bad review but many of the same bad reviews on same models so they were scratched off our list. For example... bounders and Palazzo were on our list but we read too many bad things about the same issues. Not that there are not good ones out there but for us....not worth the risk especially with lots of rain in south Florida and water was an issue with both. So far we like , as read in the previous blog , and in our price range , 2007 /2008 Tiffin and Newmar , both have high probabilities of being good coaches. I also know anything can go wrong with any model you get to spite anything you read. So I will take the advice of the $10,000 cushion for any work. Just like anything in life always keep a cushion.

Here Is our 3...So we like the Allegro 32 PB , Allegro 35 TSB, and believe it or not we found a Newmar 3750 diesel puller that we like. I've read many things about the diesel pullers noise and things like that but we did drive one and found it was not too noisy for US but I know everybody is different. We have not driven the other two but we like all three floor plans and read all majority of positive things about the Allegro ...they are all 2008 The diesel puller is the least expensive which better suits our budget. We like the floor plan and we found one for a good price, one owner, 40,000 miles. We would be going out for another ten thousand for the 2 diesel pushers.

So even though I've read so many good things about the Allegra can somebody give me some information regarding the Newmar 3750 puller? Once we decide from these three we will sit and wait until we find one that is available. One note...the Allegro 35 TSB hs 2 sinks and that's a plus with two teenage girls so it is sort of at the top of our list of the 3.

One more unrelated question. If you find an RV that has had a new roof put on with a 10-year warranty, transferable, is it still a deal-breaker because it needed a new roof in the first place? The owner said it had some wind damage on top in the insurance company went ahead and replace the whole top. That would be on the Newmar 3750 we found, should that make a difference. Don't want to leave anything out with all the your readers great advice.

To summarize my long blog.... sorry but everybody wanted to know what kind of use since we were going to have before they could answer any more questions such as what and how we were going to use the RV...so...here are my three questions if anybody out there could help. And I so appreciate your help and I do read everything!


1. If you find an RV that has had a new roof is that a deal-breaker no matter what the brand?
2. What can anybody tell me about the Newmar 3750 gas puller?
3. Is a diesel puller any advantage whatsoever to a gas?
Thanks everybody soon I will let you know what happens! TF in Florida!
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