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Old 02-11-2016, 12:51 PM   #15
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My 39' foot gasser is actually close to 40" and runs and handles just fine.
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Old 02-11-2016, 12:53 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary RVRoamer View Post
I don't think 38 ft is necessarily "bad" for a gasser - it is clearly possible to construct a decent gas-powered rig of that size. Maybe even larger. But I think it is also clear that somewhere around 36 ft it is time to be thinking about a more robust chassis. A diesel power plant becomes more desirable as the GVWR increases, and so does air suspension and a rear engine and other features that we commonly get with a "diesel pusher" chassis.

The availability of a better solution doesn't make the alternate choice "bad", but a wise man considers the options and weighs the costs, pro and con.
Since the Ford F53 chassis is the only Class A gasser choice now, it is worth noting they now offer a 6 speed tranny (though it is NOT an Allison) and GVWRs up to 26,000 pounds. "Most" DP chassis begin at 28,000 GVWR and go considerably higher in weight carrying capacity, and some provide GCVWR that are approaching the legal limit of 80,000 GCVWR. There are lots of reasons to consider a DP, but the length of the box on top isn't all that important-the weight of that box and its contents is.
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Old 02-11-2016, 01:05 PM   #17
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Gary RVRoamer - count us among the wiser. And with luck cmalberto will spend time as we did going over the safety numbers (wheelbase ratio), gross weights, CCC, etc. Then make an informed decision removing as much emotion that seems to come up with the gas vs diesel discussion.
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Old 02-11-2016, 01:15 PM   #18
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FWIW I think the issue is weight more than length. Look at the interior appointments and overall weight of the more lavish DP's.
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Old 02-11-2016, 02:09 PM   #19
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Thanks for all the great information - we are heading to the RV Show tomorrow and will see a lot of units. Looking to improve our usage of livable space means a longer unit. It's good to know that weight isn't too much a problem with this Chassis - I doubt we would consider anything above 37-38 feet but I am not informed. Thanks again.
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Old 02-11-2016, 02:17 PM   #20
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cmalberto - enjoy the show.
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Old 02-11-2016, 03:48 PM   #21
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Whatever you decide, check the cargo capacity by comparing the empty vehicle weight to the maximum vehicle weight. It can be hard to determine that with all the options available on the various coaches.
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Old 02-11-2016, 03:52 PM   #22
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For what its worth, Our 34sbd Monaco Monarch, which is 35', drives and handles just fine. For me, my mission determined whether I went the DP route or gasser. I was not going to be full time. If I was, I would have paid for the newer DP. I bought a 2008 quality made gasser for less then half the price that it was new with less then 20,000 miles on it. My only complaint is the 5,000lb towing limitation which I think you will find on all ford chasis class A's. I have taken my 35' gasser up the New Priest grade up to Yosemite, over the sierras multiple times, through Idaho and Montana, and never ever worried that I was going to have a problem making it up the hill. And in big winds, rain, and sleet, it has handled wonderfully. Best wishes on your hunt.
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Old 02-11-2016, 04:00 PM   #23
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We were up to a 35' gas unit with a tag, then made the jump to a DP and haven't looked at a gas unit since.
Even with a tag the shorter gas unit didn't handle very well and was lacking for power.
Both DSDP's were bought new and we paid dearly for that. The present unit we got for less than 45% of the new price and should really have gotten it for less.
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Old 02-11-2016, 04:50 PM   #24
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For us, we bought a new 2016 Tiffin Allegro 36LA (38' total) in June 2015. It was the perfect floor plan for us and we loved it when camped. Driving it on flat or hilly roads it is fine. When windy it can be a little challenging, but manageable. Going up hills aren't really a problem (however it can be slow) and it is a bit noisy since has to shift into lower gears, but not as bad as some say a gasser is. Prior to the gasser, we had a Dodge 3500 dually diesel and a 5th Wheel. What I miss is the lack of an exhaust brake. The transmission does ok on the gasser slowing you down or keeping it steady down hills, but with over 4000 miles we have put on it, I didn't feel comfortable going down large grades. So, this Saturday, we will be finalizing our order for a Newmar Ventana DP. Again, we loved the gasser while sitting in a campground, but the driving portion ruined it for me.
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Old 02-12-2016, 11:51 PM   #25
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Last spring I bought Winnebago Vista 36Y motorhome. Nice home, terrible motor. Lousy handling and way underpowered. In my opinion the Ford chassis might be fine for a shorter lighter coach, but the 36Y at 37'10" was too much. Trying to tow a dolly with 5K weight, it couldn't pull itself up hills, not mountains hills, without downshifting to 2nd and screaming at 4-5000rpm. One trip and I bit the bullet and traded for a used DP. Too bad cause the floor plan layout was nice and interior quality real good. Just a horrible chassis and drive train for that sized coach. If we were only going to drive short distances and park for weeks we could have stood it but, the trip this past fall was 7000 miles and the one this spring thru fall will be 12-15000 miles. Funny thing, sometimes when climbing a hill and passing a gasser, we can hear the roar of the gasser engine as we go by. Glad I'm not there now.

Bottom line I should have bought the DP right off the bat and saved tons of money and frustration. To each their own though.
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Old 02-13-2016, 12:03 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by JCGibson View Post
So, this Saturday, we will be finalizing our order for a Newmar Ventana DP. Again, we loved the gasser while sitting in a campground, but the driving portion ruined it for me.
Once you're parked the chassis/engine doesn't matter, only the floor plan does.
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Old 02-13-2016, 11:53 AM   #27
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We have driven our Challenger 37TB (38 feet long) across the US and back. And several other 1000 plus mile trips for about 15,500 in the last 10 months. We've pulled mountains in the Rockies, hills in Calif, across the midwest, all through and around the southeastern US - haven't met a hill that pulled hard - even in the mountains leading into and out of Yellowstone NP (and they are sharp inclines over the course of 15 miles), the gasser handled them. Did it get noisy - yep. Did it run at about 3500 rpms pulling those steep mountain grades - yep. Did it always pull the mountains, yep. In the 8500 miles in our coast to coast run we did once get caught by a strong cross wind.

As I stated in an earlier post - wheelbase ratio, weight distribution and tire size makes the coach stable. The V10 is a real horse that can get noisy when pulling hard but pull hard it can when asked.

And oh yes - agree - when it is parked only the floor plan matters. So says the owner of a super DP that can absolutely blow my V10 into the weeds on a mountain grade.
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Old 02-13-2016, 01:55 PM   #28
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Amazing how these threads always turn into a gas vs diesel pizzing contest. No where in the OP did he say a thing about diesel. His question was how long can a gasser be? The longest one I've seen recently is 39'-11". So just shy of 40'. I'm enjoying my gasser. Does what I want it to do. Pretty good on the highway considering it's 37' long and 13' tall. Why does this always have to turn into this argument? Seems to me there are a lot if people just trying to justify their diesel. Go figure. It just depends on how you plan on using it.
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