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Old 10-10-2006, 05:17 PM   #1
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We currently have a 5th wheel and are already considering moving up to a Class A for our next RV. I am wondering about the cost differences (other than just the initial sticker price). Things like gas mileage, propane use, etc. Are things like water heater size and inside storage space comparable ?? I love the underneath storage the Class A provides. We are a family of five so the kids would have to pull out couches for sleeping and we would have to have a toad. Would a Class A pull a minivan ?? If anyone else here made the move from fiver to Class A and can give me some input, I'd appreciate it. Thanks in advance for any replies
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Old 10-10-2006, 05:17 PM   #2
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We currently have a 5th wheel and are already considering moving up to a Class A for our next RV. I am wondering about the cost differences (other than just the initial sticker price). Things like gas mileage, propane use, etc. Are things like water heater size and inside storage space comparable ?? I love the underneath storage the Class A provides. We are a family of five so the kids would have to pull out couches for sleeping and we would have to have a toad. Would a Class A pull a minivan ?? If anyone else here made the move from fiver to Class A and can give me some input, I'd appreciate it. Thanks in advance for any replies
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Old 10-10-2006, 06:40 PM   #3
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Class A's have the same water heaters, furnaces, pumps, fridges,etc. as a trailer - no difference there.

As for fuel economy, it depends on what you are driving now and what size and power Class A you get, but chances the mpg will be less. If you now have a diesel truck pulling a good sized fiver, you are probably getting somewhere in the 11-13 mpg range. A 32-36 foot diesel motorhome probably gets 10-11 mpg; somewhat larger ones 8-10. Gas powered Class A's are likely getting 7-8 mpg.

Pull a minivan? Sure - you wouldn''t even know its there.
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Old 10-10-2006, 07:59 PM   #4
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Would a Class A pull a minivan ?? </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
Depends on the Class A in question and maybe the minivan in question ...some Class A's have 5,000 lb towing capacity and some have 10,000 lb. We tow a Honda Odyssey (apx 4,100 lb) behind our Diesel w/10,000 capacity ...no problem at all.
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Old 10-10-2006, 11:13 PM   #5
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We are considering the same move. The problem for us is finding the right unit. Would consider used as the way to go if we can find a quality unit at a good price. Fortunatly we have the time to do research. Also wondering if dealers take in both TV and 5er as a trade.
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Old 10-10-2006, 11:55 PM   #6
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One of our fellow Pond Piggies made the move from his 5er to motorhome a couple years ago. I'm sure he'll jump in here, but I think he's thrilled with the move and the dealer did take both the 5er and TV on trade.
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Old 10-13-2006, 06:42 AM   #7
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we moved from a 33' 5er plus gasser ford drw that got 6-7 mpg for a motor home 34' gasser that towing gets 8mpg not looking back!
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Old 10-13-2006, 02:18 PM   #8
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We just did this 2 months ago. Went from a K3500 GMC Diesel Dually/ CrossRoads Paradaise Pointe 36SK 5er to a Windsport 36A gas MH. MH has larger tanks but heater, water heater, etc are the same or just a bit larger.

The dealer did take in our truck and 5er on trade. They salivated over the truck and told us it would go in just a few days. Got pretty good value for it on trade from them as well because it was set up to tow our 5er so they would be able to pass it along to someone else who needed it set up that way.

As for pulling your van, check with the manufacturer (look in the owner's manual or call them!) to see if it can be flat towed or need a tow dolly. We pull either a Pontiac G6 convertible or a Nissan Murano behind our new MH (kids or no kids depending on room needed) on a tow dolly because both vehicles cannot be flat towed. Make sure you know for sure from the manufacturer or risk destroying the toad.

As for the storage issue, that depends on what model 5er you have now and what model MH you are looking at. We lost kitchen storage but gained twice as much compartment (basement) storage. And the drive is so mich better in the MH than it was with our 17 year old son's knees in my back anywhere we went in the truck. No one makes a truck with enough passenger room to handle long legged people (or kids).

As for the kids sleeping on the sofa bed and on air mattresses on the floor, they were doing that in the 5er anyway.
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Old 10-14-2006, 05:47 PM   #9
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I just made the move in April. A few remarks first. Gary, I had a 04 Dodge Dually pulling a 31' double slide 5ver, and the gas mileage was identical to what I get now, 8.5 to 9.0 and thats towing my Jeep. The new diesels get less mileage than the older ones due to emissions requirements.

We made the move because we wanted to improve our rig, and all the other rigs were basically the same just more money, and we did not want to get a 40' fiver (or MH for that matter.)

I would only have a diesel MH for a variety of reasons, and did not want a bigger rig. The dealer did take my 5ver (which was taking a hit) and I did a little better selling the truck to a different dealer. I had equity in the truck, so the deal was a wash.

The inside storage in the MH is a little less than the 5ver, even though the MH is about 2' longer. That is because in a 5ver, ALL of the inside room is usable. On a MH some space is lost to the driving space, although some storage is worked in to the seating area.

The MH tanks are the same or larger than were on the 5ver, and the Water Heater is bigger (10 gal as opposed to 8 in the FW). The fresh water capacity is much larger. There are infinitly more systems and ammenities in the MH. The outside storage is greater, and the porpane tank is larger.

The real benefit came to the setup and break down when comparing the MH to the FW. The MH is faster, easier, and less work. The MH is easier to get into most sites (although I never had a problem backing the FW). I love having a smaller toad to drive around in small downtown areas, and when we start to full time in about 18 months, I will get a lift for the Harley to take it with me as well. This would not have worked nearly as well with the 5ver. The wife loves to be able to get up and use the restroom on the road without having to pull over (I like it too!) The MH is super comfortable to drive, and I really love the full body paint on the MH as opposed to the decals on the FW.

Was the MH more money? Yep, lots. Would I do it again? In a heartbeat. I still loved my truck, and may buy another one someday. But the tremendous difference in the ammenities, the comfort when traveling, and the ease of setup and breakdown of camp make a huge difference.

I bought a used Jeep Wranger as a toad, and we have another hobby of Jeepin' on the out of the way roads when we camp in remote and beautiful national and state parks.

It's a big decision, but if you research your options, decide what you need to work for you, and don't rush out and buy the first rig you look at, you will enjoy the MH, and it will enhance your RV experience.
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Old 10-15-2006, 03:55 AM   #10
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Miles:
Fortunately we have the time to do research. Also wondering if dealers take in both RV and 5er as a trade. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>When we purchased our first motorhome we traded in both our pickup truck and fifth wheel. This is common practice at RV dealerships and they are more than willing to get your trade.

While you are doing your research, and since you have "time" on your side consider looking at the new Workhorse UFO. It is the "First of Its Kind", type of motorhome that offers the technical advantages of modern and efficient design, multiple "rear" engine type choices and a totally flat floor from the firewall clear to the back of the motorhome.

This new motorhome chassis is going to burst forward as the preeminent chassis of choice among RV buyers that are looking for that special floorplan that isn't compromised by the needs of the drivetrain.

The Workhorse UFO will be showing up at a dealership near you as early as spring.
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Old 10-15-2006, 06:42 AM   #11
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We went from a cab over camper to our first MH so everything was a huge jump...including price. Our first MH was a 32' gasser and we traveled from Alaska to Montana towing our 2005 Jeep Grand Cherokee. The gasser had a really hard time pulling all of the weight plus the jeep up the hills even though we were far from the max load rating. When we got into Montana, we traded the gasser off for our 36' Journey diesel pusher with the 330 hp Cat C-7 and have decided we will never own a gasser again. The diesel pusher is longer, almost twice as heavy as our 32' gasser and pulls the jeep up hills as if it wasn't even there. I mentioned the weight difference between the two above because this made a HUGE difference in handling when we traveled across areas with lots of cross winds. The gasser would blow around on the road very easily making it extremely difficult to drive at times. The heavier diesel pusher holds it's ground very well when traveling and takes quite a bit stronger wind to move it around. In my opinion, the diesel pusher is overall a completely different experience and much more of a pleasure to drive.
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Old 10-15-2006, 05:54 PM   #12
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<span class="ev_code_PURPLE">Thank you for all of your replies. You've given me lots of useful information which will help me when it comes time to make a final decision </span>
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Old 10-16-2006, 05:10 AM   #13
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When we decided to buy a motorhome, I thought why would anyone buy anything else?
Then when we stayed at a few campgrounds and especially state parks I was surprised to see motorhomes were in the minority.

Of course for our travel needs at this time motorhome is best for us. We are retired and available to travel often. Motorhomes hold up best when used often, they need a lot of exercise to keep the mechanical parts in good working order.

Upon giving it some thought over the past few years and observing others, if we had a young family with children I would seriously consider a travel trailer or fifth wheel over a motorhome.

The needs of our young family changed so often when the kids were young so the flexibility of leaving your RV stored for long periods of time it would be an advantage having a trailer.

Good Luck with your decision.
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Old 10-19-2006, 08:05 AM   #14
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We just changed from a 32' FW to a 34' MH.

The wife loves the MH over the FW and would not go back.

I enjoyed the FW and I enjoy the MH. Both have their own pros and cons. I suggest researching until you have narrowed the field and then try renting to see if it is really for you.

I got better fuel mileage with the FW configuration. But not by much. However, I get considerably better fuel mileage with the Toad then I do with the pick-up for sight seeing purposes. (Might be a wash).

The MH has larger water, diesel, and propane capacity. Plus I don't have to carry a generator in the MH since it has one built in. Since we opted for a short (34') MH we have still been able to boondock (dry camp) and the larger water capacity increases our time between fill ups.

The one factor we didn't have to consider is children. (Ours are all out on their own).

With that said, (at this time) I would not go back to a FW. Overall the MH meets our needs and is really a great RV.

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