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Old 10-20-2017, 01:43 PM   #1
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How far back can one ride in a Class A before it's too bumpy?

Putting aside seat belt issues for now, how far back in a Class A can one comfortably ride?

This topic of conversation has come up with a few models of Class A motorhomes. For example, I've seen several Class A models that have either a bed or a sleeper sofa just in front of, or right above, the rear axle.

Up until now, my experience driving/riding in RVs is limited to Class C's. I remember once trying to ride in a bed in the back of one, and the second we started moving I was bouncing so much I thought I was going to die.

However, it seems like Class A models would be more stable in general, and that beds or couches that are above or right in front of the rear axle should be fair game. Right?

And, just so I don't make assumptions, maybe the different makeup of a Class A would even make it okay to ride in beds or couches all the way in back? I doubt it, but I have found that my assumptions about RVs are usually wrong!

One particular model I'm looking at is the Thor Outlaw 37RB, which has a bed (or couch, depending on model year) right above the rear axle. I'd love to hear specific experiences of people trying to ride on that bed, or even riding on the sofas in the garage in the back.

However, I don't want to focus just on one model. I'd rather have general feedback on just how far back people have ridden in any Class A.


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Old 10-20-2017, 01:55 PM   #2
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Don't have a class A.....

I suspect they are like the air ride busses and the seats all the way in the back are smooth sailing.

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Old 10-20-2017, 02:04 PM   #3
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Depends on the coach and mfg...
but even the second bath 'facilities' in the back is good if a tag axle
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Old 10-20-2017, 02:07 PM   #4
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We have a 40' HR Endeavor Diesel Pusher and the DW and the fur kids frequently take naps in the bed at the back while we are traveling. It is above and slightly behind the axle. The engine noise is rather loud, but she uses a "White Noise" generator even when she sleeps at night, so it doesn't bother her. She never complained about the ride. She won't drive, so I have no experience myself.
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Old 10-20-2017, 03:41 PM   #5
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How far back can one ride in a Class A before it's too bumpy?

You need to check on this, but I think the outlaw is on a Ford chassis so it probably spring suspension, not air suspension.
It could have a bumpy ride
Did you test drive it?
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Old 10-20-2017, 04:21 PM   #6
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Everyone is different, some people can sleep laying down in a moving vehicle ok, and some people get sick from the motion. The amount of hang over behind the rear axle will make a difference as well--the more overhang the more bounce.
However, seatbelt location and numbers indicate the only safe places passengers can ride. There are enough pictures of "former" motorhomes after they had a blowout or accident that should make a believer out of almost anybody why the belts are there.
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Old 10-20-2017, 05:56 PM   #7
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My wife rides in the bed all the way back in our Fleetwood Terra SE 33s
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Old 10-20-2017, 06:41 PM   #8
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For the GAS powered (front engine) Class A's...
Unless there's an air-bag suspension, the ride will be bumpy to the rear of the mid-ship seating (typically the dinette)...until the rear end is loaded.

In the Outlaw specifically, there's a fantastic ride in the loft of the 3611, 3808, 37LS, 37GP, and 37RB/MD twins, and the mid-ship bed of the 37MD/RB (both just over the rear axle).

Then, if the rear axle is loaded near to GAWR, the ride in the rear settles down very nice.

The BEST ride we ever had in our Outlaw was while moving the contents a friends shop from TX to CA (garage was full of equipment). Smooth and quiet.

Best luck
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Old 10-20-2017, 07:01 PM   #9
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I have a 40 ft diesel pusher built on a Freightliner chassis with air bag suspension. The main bed is all the way in the back over the engine. I sleep there frequently when my wife is driving. The engine noise is loud, but that does not bother me unless she is in town when it alternates between the roar of the diesel and the scream of the blower/ Jake brake. If the road is smooth like the Interstate, the ride is smooth. If the road is rough, so is the ride. When in Alaska it was too rough I had to get up.

The best sleeping place and the best ride is on the couch which is located between the front and rear axels. It is like you are in a rocking chair. Neither the generator in the front nor the engine in the rear is overly loud so it is possible for several people in that area to cary on a conversation. The ride is smooth until you hit a frost heave and leave the ground, then all bets are off.

For that reason I try to sit in a seat when maneuvering or on rough road, but I have no problems sleeping or laying on the bed or couch when on the Interstate or other smooth road.

Is any of what I have suggested safe. You will have to answer that question yourself. Clearly laying on the bed is not as safe as sitting upright with your seat belt fastened, but if you take a nap and relax, you just might arrive relaxed. As in all of life, there are tradeoffs. I spent many hours sleeping on the back seat of a Greyhound. Was that dangerous? I never thought so. Might I get killed tomorrow on the way to Carowins? Yes, but I refuse to worry about that, I am looking forward to too much fun!

Not sure that helped, but that is my experience.
My wife and I would travel full time, but we have to sleep occasionally.
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Old 10-20-2017, 07:07 PM   #10
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Several of us had to come back to Tucson from Phoenix in a 2013 Allegro Bus 45 footer. This is a front living room model. It was very comfortable at the dinette, on the couch, and in the easy chair. However, walking around was difficult at times because of the rough road we were on, I-10, and the Bus tended to rock.
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Old 10-22-2017, 06:31 PM   #11
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Most tour buses have bunks in the rear
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Old 10-22-2017, 06:42 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Tetonchief View Post
However, seatbelt location and numbers indicate the only safe places passengers can ride. There are enough pictures of "former" motorhomes after they had a blowout or accident that should make a believer out of almost anybody why the belts are there.
Agree! I can pull over anytime and everyone can nap if it's necessary.
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Old 10-22-2017, 06:51 PM   #13
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.....when we have done early morning starts, my DW will sleep on through engine start and warm up and usually does not join me up front for at least 2 hours fully rested. NeXus Bentley, 2016 class A diesel.

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Old 10-22-2017, 07:34 PM   #14
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We can sleep or ride anywhere in our motorhome, from the queen bed in the rear (which is directly over the the drive axles) to the queen cabover berth up front. The DW and I occasionally run non-stop when we are short on time. Neither of us has any trouble sleeping while the other drives. The children certainly never miss a wink!

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