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Old 06-28-2015, 08:52 PM   #1
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Location: Seattle, Washington
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My First stop at a dealer's lot

Well I had my first foray into walking onto a dealer's lot today. Looked at three coaches: 1999 HR Imperial, 2001 Newmar Mountain Aire and a 2001 Monaco Diplomat.
The HR was obviously ridden hard and put up wet. The pungent smell of mold, mildew & pet odors was almost overwhelming. They had replaced the flooring with laminate but it didnt match the maple cabinetry and dinette (which had a lot of obvious damage from lots of scrubbing with water over the years.) The funny thing was I couldnt find where the water may have come from. 76xxx miles on a Cummins. 2004 tires (I even found the original recipt for the tires. $55k WAY over priced.
The Mountain Aire had a beautiful full body paint with no indication of delam or window leakage, gorgeous cherrywood cabinetry with the credenza and table (EXACTLY what I like) Everything looked and smelled good and no obvious sign of leaks. Had the original carpet (which will need replacing) and tile floor in the kitchen area. Both slides were in and try as we might for quite some time we couldnt get enough juice in the coach batteries to move them out. Took a look in the battery compartment and the batteries were so corroded its a wonder we could get any lights on. Salesman said they would have all new batteries if I bought it... umm hmmm. Coach hasnt been licensed since 2013. Had 2013 tires & 76xxxk on the odometer. $65K Again WAY too much.
Finally the Monaco. Previous owner had torn up the flooring and had replaced it with hardwood birch. Very poor job. Bad cuts along the stairs with attempted patching with colored calk. A real mess just inside the door closure. Bad cuts under the seats. After that I really didnt look too much closer. I didnt even ask the price.
I like the Mountain Aire but can find another one locally 10k cheaper, though not in the color I like... but for 10k I can live with maple rather than cherry.
This DID help me though in narrowing my search, as it will still be months away before I make the actual purchase.

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Old 06-28-2015, 08:58 PM   #2
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Location: Palmer Ak
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Our first MH took us over 9 months to find one we like that did not have too many issues. Our current MH, took us almost 6 months to work the deal out. Do not get discouraged as there are some really nice 'used' MH's out there and at good prices. One might also spend some time looking on line to see what else is out there.
Good luck on the search and take your time!

2009 38' Diplomat
CSM- retired, wife as co-pilot
Reka & Ali providing security (our 2 labs)
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Old 06-28-2015, 09:04 PM   #3
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My suggestion is you keep looking till you find something you love. These things can be expensive and hard to keep in perfect condition. If you love the coach it makes it a lot easier. When you find the "right" motorhome just buy it. Don't try to insist on the deal of the century.
B Bob
Country Coach 42' Affinity
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Old 06-28-2015, 10:19 PM   #4
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I have a 1998 Monaco diplomat 38 foot one slide 275 motor, 57000 miles, not lived in only vacation, I have owned it four the last 10 years have all receipt on work done
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Old 06-29-2015, 04:36 AM   #5
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We looked for 6 months for our current MH. We are happy with it You have to turn over allot of rocks to find that little gem.
2001 Itasca Horizon 36LD Cat
Retired Air Force, One lovely Angel, 2 Cats and three birds.
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Old 06-29-2015, 07:05 PM   #6
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We bought our first rv in 2009. It was a 2005 35 ft gasser. At the time it was what we wanted. Wife loved the floor plan. We knew it was just a starter rv. We made a list of this we wanted in our next rv. Fast forward 4 years. I say that because it felt like we had just bought it. I was monkeying around on the different sites at rv for sale. All of a sudden this one pops up. It was a 2008 Thor Mandalay. After looking at everything I called my wife and after looking at it we checked our wish list for our next rv. This had everything on it plus. I put a bid in on it and was surprised that the owners took it. It was on consignment at Palmr v and marine in Fort Myers. Great people to work with. Point is, you never know when the one you want pops up.
2008 Thor, Four Winds Mandalay 40G. Cummins 400 isl. Freightliner chassis
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Old 06-29-2015, 07:14 PM   #7
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You won't find delamination on a Newmar as they use a hung wall construction and it's not laminated so no way for delamination to happen.
2009 45' Magna 630 w/Cummins ISX 650 HP/1950 Lbs Ft
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Old 06-29-2015, 07:56 PM   #8
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Sounds like you had a look at 3 coaches to run (not walk) away from.

Take your time, do not rush into anything. Start taking notes as to what you like and dislike. Compare floor plans and fit/finish of the coach. Eventually you need to take a test drive and determine if you can tell the difference in chassis handling and ride.

Don't get discouraged. I got lucky and bought our first coach, a Class C, at auction for ~dealer cost. It served us well but we started to look for a Class A. We didn't have clue what we wanted but we looked at a lot of coaches and went to a lot of RV shows. We got lucky again and bought our current coach, a 2002 Monaco Windsor, in 2008, we looked at it and walked away but went back after 1 week with an offer.

Eventually you'll find one you like at a good price.
Jim J
2002 Monaco Windsor 38 PKD
2005 Jeep Grand Cherokee w/5.7 Hemi
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Old 06-29-2015, 08:37 PM   #9
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My First stop at a dealer's lot

Bought mine on Ebay I know u all think Im crazy and sometimes when I look back I was, and they say God looks after drunks and fools, I believe this. Wife and I found this coach on ebay it was at a dealer that deals with repo units and he tells you straight up what he can see wrong and he tells u that he will make sure running gear is road worthy but as far as the other stuff is up to you. but we liked the floor plan of this one and it had what we needed, it was located about 150 miles from us so we went to take a look at it before auction ended on a saturday well the sales men were off and there was only a couple guys working in the shop they told me that something was wrong with the fuel supply that it was out or had a problem with the fuel lines or filter but would not crank so I could here it run but he would run it a little with some either, that i wasnt a fan of but it did run a little on the bottle, he said they had just driven it a few hundred miles from where they bought it, and they would get it straight before it sold. the rest looked ok but couldnt try anything, So we tried to cut a deal before the ebay auction ended talking with salesman at the lake on the phone but he said it was in the last hours of auction and he coouldnt end it early. we went home and bid to by and wound up with a nice 40' safari Sarengetti with a 3126 cat and 3060 allison with 50000 miles and it runs and drives great no problems with running gear the genny gave us a little but all the lighting and appliances work as it should. got it all for 17,500.00 now where you going to buy a 40' DP for that price. but like I said had to gamble it could have went bad quickly. You just have to look to you fined that one that fits your style and go with it. you will no when you see it. sorry for long post just thought yall would get a kick out of our crazy adventures.

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