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Old 05-07-2016, 11:42 PM   #15
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The reason for the short preference is due to I want to be able to get onto some smaller places and I just don't need the room of a big one. Traveling alone it will be a big pain if I get into a place where I have to back up. That would mean unhook the Jeep. The big grades I deal with most here in Cal are Cajon Pass, the Grapevine, Sherwin Grade. If a gasser will pull a Wrangler up those with no problem then it will do just about any. I can do any of them at any speed I want with my TT and Ram and that would end with a MH / Jeep combo. Getting the truth here about MH's from owners with years of experience is great and will save lots of wasted hours.
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Old 05-08-2016, 07:48 AM   #16
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As Nothermark mentioned, be sure whatever you get it's built on the appropriate chassis. We have had 2 Winnebago Adventurers built on the Ford chassis. Both are in the 32' range and both handled well.

The older one was 32' 11" long built on a 208" wheelbase 20,500 lb. chassis. The only improvement needed for excellent handling was a Roadmaster rear sway bar.

The newer one is 33' 3" long built on a 228" wheelbase 22,000 lb. chassis. It has excellent handling characteristics without any modifications.

Rule of thumb is the wheelbase needs to be at least 52% of the overall length of the motorhome for acceptable handling characteristics. For excellent handling the wheelbase should be in excess of 54% of the overall length. Our first motorhome had a wheelbase of slightly over 52% of the length. Our current one has a wheelbase of slightly over 57% of it's overall length.

Many manufacturers use the shortest wheelbase, lightest capacity chassis to keep the price down. It generally results in a motorhome with poor handling characteristics that needs hundreds if not thousands of dollars of add on equipment to make it drivable.

We put over 100,000 miles on the first motorhome and have over 26,00- on the current one. Both averaged between 7 mpg and 8 mpg pulling a 3,800 lb. Jeep
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Old 05-08-2016, 08:04 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vettenuts View Post
I have read that the 2016 chassis has better characteristics then prior years. I have an older Workhorse chassis and you can't beat the Alison transmission and big block motor. Not sure if you have considered used but might be worth investigating. The older gas Newmar Mountain Aires are really nice coaches.
I know someone through work who has a 2003 Newmar Mountain Aire, and I can say from experience its a beautiful coach.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TomandGloria View Post
I have a 2007 Itasca Suncruiser on a 24000 lb chassis with 6 speed Allison and 8.1 GM engine. I pull a 2015 crew cab GMC Canyon with no problems. Average around 7 MPG. It's 36 footer if that helps.
Thats pretty good for having a large toad and heavy chassis


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Originally Posted by Highway 4x4 View Post
The reason for the short preference is due to I want to be able to get onto some smaller places and I just don't need the room of a big one. Traveling alone it will be a big pain if I get into a place where I have to back up. That would mean unhook the Jeep. The big grades I deal with most here in Cal are Cajon Pass, the Grapevine, Sherwin Grade. If a gasser will pull a Wrangler up those with no problem then it will do just about any. I can do any of them at any speed I want with my TT and Ram and that would end with a MH / Jeep combo. Getting the truth here about MH's from owners with years of experience is great and will save lots of wasted hours.
My coach has the first v10 chassis ford made, and it will pull your jeep. It would be near the top of its tow capacity, but it will. The newer ones are stronger, quieter and tuned a little different so they pull better, but as a case in point, any v10 equipped coach should be able to do it as long as the tow capacity is there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hikerdogs View Post
As Nothermark mentioned, be sure whatever you get it's built on the appropriate chassis. We have had 2 Winnebago Adventurers built on the Ford chassis. Both are in the 32' range and both handled well.

The older one was 32' 11" long built on a 208" wheelbase 20,500 lb. chassis. The only improvement needed for excellent handling was a Roadmaster rear sway bar.

The newer one is 33' 3" long built on a 228" wheelbase 22,000 lb. chassis. It has excellent handling characteristics without any modifications.

Rule of thumb is the wheelbase needs to be at least 52% of the overall length of the motorhome for acceptable handling characteristics. For excellent handling the wheelbase should be in excess of 54% of the overall length. Our first motorhome had a wheelbase of slightly over 52% of the length. Our current one has a wheelbase of slightly over 57% of it's overall length.

Many manufacturers use the shortest wheelbase, lightest capacity chassis to keep the price down. It generally results in a motorhome with poor handling characteristics that needs hundreds if not thousands of dollars of add on equipment to make it drivable.

We put over 100,000 miles on the first motorhome and have over 26,00- on the current one. Both averaged between 7 mpg and 8 mpg pulling a 3,800 lb. Jeep
I am 34 feet long on a 22.5k chassis. When I bought it the handling was absolutely terrible. I mean on freeway I was white-knuckling it. I found the CHF thread and in about 20 minutes that changed forever. I dont have any aftermarket addons, I dont have air ride or expensive suspension modifications, I just did the CHF and even at my max of 22.5k it handled very well. About 8 mpg on my older 1999 6.8 with a 4 spd transmission. I travelled at about 60mph.

Yes. On hills the Ford screams. No doubt about that. It makes itself VERY known.

Bear in mind that if you do look for a ford chassis, there is little difference between the 4 and 5 speeds as far as fuel economy goes. the 5 speed provides better take off only.

Dont go looking for a class A if you have a concern for fuel economy, it will cause you to tear your hair out. I dont care who says what, all class A gassers are going to be relatively similar (expensive) on fuel. Buy it because you like it, and can afford it.

If you are good with your hands, you could buy a fixer-upper like I did. Its been fun, I got to know my coach intimately, it gives me lots of stuff to do with my time, and it cuts costs.
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Old 05-08-2016, 09:11 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Highway 4x4 View Post
The reason for the short preference is due to I want to be able to get onto some smaller places and I just don't need the room of a big one. Traveling alone it will be a big pain if I get into a place where I have to back up. That would mean unhook the Jeep. The big grades I deal with most here in Cal are Cajon Pass, the Grapevine, Sherwin Grade. If a gasser will pull a Wrangler up those with no problem then it will do just about any. I can do any of them at any speed I want with my TT and Ram and that would end with a MH / Jeep combo. Getting the truth here about MH's from owners with years of experience is great and will save lots of wasted hours.
The mileage numbers you are seeing folks talk about here are quite realistic IMO. 10 MPG is a little far out of reach unless you are always going down hill.
Have you considered a slide in camper for your Ram? I have been in some which were very roomy and nice. I'm not trying to discourage you from buying a Class A but just throwing out another option.
My Class A is gas 8.1 and I am happy with it's power overall. I didn't buy it to run 1/4 mile runs with anyway. I have never checked gas mileage and don't care. When the gauge shows between 1/2 and 1/4 I start looking for a filling station. I'm ready for a stretch anyway.
When I was looking to buy a Class A my list of what I didn't want on it for options was longer than the options I did want. When I did buy I got low mileage for a MH of that vintage, I knew the two people who had previously owned it and knew exactly what was wrong with it and what was right with it. I spent less than $300 to get it in like new condition. I did splurge and add a Safe-T-Plus steering stabilizer though.
If I put over 1,000 miles a season on my MH it would be an exception. Fuel consumption isn't an issue for me.
I have no doubt I could pull a Wrangler with very little difficulty but when I go camping I generally have a couple family members along which have SUV's or pick ups. I don't need to drag along something I have no need for.
[moderator edit]
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Old 05-08-2016, 09:26 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Highway 4x4 View Post
Never had a MH but had TT's and diesel Rams. Thinking of going to the gasser MH, 30-32 ft, and Jeep combo and have questions.
Are there ones that tow better than others, along with ride and noise. I know that they are all Ford V-10 after 2006 or so. Have they improved them in the last few years? More power and better trans? Is a Newmar Bay Star going to be much better than a lower price Fleetwood other than interior? I expect to be going 40-45 mph over the passes and getting <10 MPG with 4 door Jeep in tow. Many different MH's out there and really don't want to trust salesmen for this type of info.
I wouldn't count on the 10mpg. more like 7-8 mpg and 45 mph over passes? Depends on which pass.
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Old 05-08-2016, 11:51 AM   #20
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A few years ago at the Winnebago Grand National Rally I spoke with a Ford representative concerning fuel mileage. I mentioned several posts on this forum where people were claiming mileage of 10+ mpg. His response was: "Anyone claiming double digit mileage with the Ford 6.8 liter V10 needs to recheck their math."
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Old 05-08-2016, 01:08 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by superk View Post
I know someone through work who has a 2003 Newmar Mountain Aire, and I can say from experience its a beautiful coach.



Thats pretty good for having a large toad and heavy chassis




My coach has the first v10 chassis ford made, and it will pull your jeep. It would be near the top of its tow capacity, but it will. The newer ones are stronger, quieter and tuned a little different so they pull better, but as a case in point, any v10 equipped coach should be able to do it as long as the tow capacity is there.



I am 34 feet long on a 22.5k chassis. When I bought it the handling was absolutely terrible. I mean on freeway I was white-knuckling it. I found the CHF thread and in about 20 minutes that changed forever. I dont have any aftermarket addons, I dont have air ride or expensive suspension modifications, I just did the CHF and even at my max of 22.5k it handled very well. About 8 mpg on my older 1999 6.8 with a 4 spd transmission. I travelled at about 60mph.

Yes. On hills the Ford screams. No doubt about that. It makes itself VERY known.

Bear in mind that if you do look for a ford chassis, there is little difference between the 4 and 5 speeds as far as fuel economy goes. the 5 speed provides better take off only.

Dont go looking for a class A if you have a concern for fuel economy, it will cause you to tear your hair out. I dont care who says what, all class A gassers are going to be relatively similar (expensive) on fuel. Buy it because you like it, and can afford it.

If you are good with your hands, you could buy a fixer-upper like I did. Its been fun, I got to know my coach intimately, it gives me lots of stuff to do with my time, and it cuts costs.
If you have a 1999 F53 chassis with a 22.5K capacity It's probably been modified by the motorhome builder. Here's a link to the spec sheet for F53 chassis available from Ford in 1999:
https://www.fleet.ford.com/truckbbas...99/167_171.pdf

At the bottom of the last page it lists the capacities as 15,700 lbs., 18,000 lbs., and 20,500 lbs. Also in the 2000 body builders guide it lists the maximum capacity of the 1999 chassis as 20,500 lbs.
https://www.fleet.ford.com/truckbbas.../IVM_sdtrk.pdf

According to available Ford publications the first Ford factory 22,000 lb. chassis was introduced in 2000. The 2001 body builders guide lists the maximum capacity of the 2000 chassis as 22,000 lbs.
https://www.fleet.ford.com/truckbbas...lass_a_ivm.pdf
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Old 05-08-2016, 04:09 PM   #22
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See my Signature. I have 60,000 miles plus on the speedometer. Go to my Blog to see mods that I've made to it. 31 ft long. I tow a jeep liberty. and this is a so called entry level motor home.
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Old 05-08-2016, 06:58 PM   #23
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class a gas

2010 is last year for workhorse allison combo
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Old 05-09-2016, 02:12 AM   #24
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I would not expect to get 10MPG. That is why I put the < in front of it. That means less than. A > means more than. I would be looking used class A gas as I want to spend <80K. For that kind of cash I could probably be looking at a more used DP.
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Old 05-09-2016, 10:03 AM   #25
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We have a 2010 Fleetwood Encounter 32BH on a 18k chassis and tow a Honda Pilot (~4500 lbs.) We get ~7 mpg when towing and have done the Grapevine going south a few times. It pulls fine, maintains 45 mph without a problem, even has a little in reserve to help when passing.

The only drawback on ours is that the shorter wheelbase and longer rear overhang, don't work so well with a heavy toad like the Pilot. At highway speeds the toad has a tendency to push the rear end of the motorhome out causing a considerable amount of oversteer. I've learned to expect it and predict when it will happen, but the first time I experienced it was a white - knuckle event.

The V-10 has plenty of power and average gas mileage, but look for a coach with a longer wheelbase.
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Old 05-09-2016, 10:54 PM   #26
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Have a 2014 Itasca sunstar 27 N
We liked the layout and it could fit in our driveway.
Huge handling problem at first it leand to one side ?
Winnebago sent a shim to our dealer ,what a difference
Keeping the Gas tank full and water tank full also helps the handling
Many problems with this new . I wonder why it left the factory this way.
If I had to do it again I would by used .
Met a Couple on the road with a new Bay Star thay had lots of problems also
7.3 to 8.3 mpg towing Honda Cvic
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Old 05-09-2016, 11:16 PM   #27
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. . . I have a 2007 29'5" Safari Trek with the 8.1 & 6 speed Allison; smooth & quiet ( quieter, much quieter than my Honda Element for sure )!!! Grade brake comes in handy. . .Wish it was a diesel only when going up hills here in the Sierra but only for a few minutes of the journey; glad it is not a diesel when it comes to maintenance & repairs. . . .Food for thought. . .Go to nwtfc.com for more info ( Some late model units on sale there ). . . I purchased this as it is under 30' & allows one to go to more places than the longer units; such as boon docking, BLM, government parks & length restricted camping. . . Good luck in the search!!!!!
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