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Old 06-29-2016, 08:33 AM   #29
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We're right on target with smlranger >>> After a couple of years of research and shopping .. two things became apparent ... ... buy used ... and avoid dealers ...
Worked for us ... saved a ton of money and are very happy with our Bus ...
You mite consider Travel Supreme on you list for used coaches ... #justsayin
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Old 06-29-2016, 08:38 AM   #30
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Pduggs, best thing to do now is go drive some of them and make your decision based on how they feel to you and your wallet. There is no wrong answer, because everyone likes different things. I remember an old customer of mine saying: if eveyone liked the same things, they'd all be after his wife.
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Old 06-29-2016, 08:48 PM   #31
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This has been a great topic and the guidance for the various options has been a pleasure to follow. I was thinking there is a middle ground that one might consider regarding the OP question/observation. That is, most of the top tier MHs that are 10 years or newer still command a higher price than a newer middle tier model MH like the Newmar Ventana. I think someone else has already mentioned that these new middle tier models actually have a range of features that 8-10 years ago were only available from the top tier manufactures.
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Old 06-29-2016, 09:00 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by THS Hammer View Post
This thread is exactly where we were two years ago and I decided to buy a new gasser after standing behind a 10 year old Monaco with the CAT running making those CAT sounds I love having spent 45 years in the truck industry (retired white collar - not able to afford any level of new diesel at the time). Why did I choose the new gasser? For the warranty! Wow did we ever need the warranty!
Now I want to upgrade to a 2008/2009/2010 38-40' low mileage diesel. Found one last week. Got approved by the only financial institution the dealer can use for a 2008- - but didn't like the cash amount needed nor the interest rate.
I understand the upside down on my current loan but lender wanted that paid in cash as well as 10% down. After that explanation my question is?
Are there lending institutions that specialize in this secondary market or does one just have to have $100,000 to $140,000 cash. If so how does one get preapproved for $x amount in a loan with a reasonable interest rate? (My credit union will finance us on a new/used car or truck but the caps on term and $ are too low for what we need)
Just keep what we have for another few years??
What you are posting is about what we ran into also, then the engine went south. All in all it cost us about $166,000 cash. We were not pre-approved even though our credit rating is very good.
The finance manager wouldn't admit it but he didn't say no when we asked if our ages entered into the amount down they required.
Basically we now know we should have kept the perfectly good '02 Dutch Star DP and saved our cash for Dr's bills.
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Old 06-30-2016, 06:41 AM   #33
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This has been a great topic and the guidance for the various options has been a pleasure to follow. I was thinking there is a middle ground that one might consider regarding the OP question/observation. That is, most of the top tier MHs that are 10 years or newer still command a higher price than a newer middle tier model MH like the Newmar Ventana. I think someone else has already mentioned that these new middle tier models actually have a range of features that 8-10 years ago were only available from the top tier manufactures.
If a new middle tier coach has many of the features of a 10 year old top-of-line coach, does it not make better sense to buy the new middle tier coach? The new coach won't have the wear and tear of the old coach and comes with a warranty. Plus the price will be comparable.

Does this thinking extend to the chassis and house? Is the new DS chassis as good as the 10 year old Roadmaster S or Dynomax chassis? Is the construction of the house better or equal between the new DS and the old high end Monaco or CC ?

I go back and forth with these questions a lot.
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Old 06-30-2016, 06:55 AM   #34
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If a new middle tier coach has many of the features of a 10 year old top-of-line coach, does it not make better sense to buy the new middle tier coach? The new coach won't have the wear and tear of the old coach and comes with a warranty.

Does this thinking extend to the chassis and house? Is the new DS chassis as good as the 10 year old Roadmaster S or Dynomax chassis? Is the construction of the house better or equal between the new DS and the old high end Monaco or CC ?

I go back and forth with these questions a lot.
You can drive yourself batty mulling over these questions, for sure. . Newmar makes a good coach. The Ventana is on a Freightliner chassis and while it may not be built like a Roadmaster (Monaco) or Dynomax (Country Coach), it is still a very good chassis. If you have the bucks to buy new and want new with the new coach warranty, by all means go for it. You may get really lucky and get one that has few issues. In any case, Newmar has a good reputation for customer service. IMO, anyone who buys a new motorhome these days should be prepared, however, to make at least one trip back to the factory for fixes in the first year. If I was buying a new Newmar, I would also do their factory delivery. You pay a bit more but I would want to do that for many reasons.
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Old 06-30-2016, 06:58 AM   #35
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And then there's the depreciation factor to consider...🌨
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Old 06-30-2016, 07:28 AM   #36
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Fwiw.

One of things that keeps us in our MH is what we have vs what we would get by buying newer. We would like a couple more slides and heated floors plus a tag axle and more HP. It would take about $50-80k more to get those things in used. The reality is we lived in our single slide for all but 8 months out of 3 years. It tows our Silverado 1500 with a motorcycle in the bed and gets 7.3 mpg. We had all our stuff in the bays and inside. I've upgraded a recliner, the front TV is lcd and I put in a Travler for DIRECTV.

It does every thing we want, it has air leveling and Aqua-Hot. I've maintained every system and I know the condition of every thing. In the end I could spend all that money and the net gain would be heated floors. We get comments asking if it is new. All our needs are satisfied by what we have. I think we are good till we are done.

YMMV
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Old 06-30-2016, 07:56 AM   #37
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If a new middle tier coach has many of the features of a 10 year old top-of-line coach, does it not make better sense to buy the new middle tier coach? The new coach won't have the wear and tear of the old coach and comes with a warranty. Plus the price will be comparable.

Does this thinking extend to the chassis and house? Is the new DS chassis as good as the 10 year old Roadmaster S or Dynomax chassis? Is the construction of the house better or equal between the new DS and the old high end Monaco or CC ?

I go back and forth with these questions a lot.

You sir, have drilled down to the true heart of the question. The answer is no. The CC semi monocoque chassis died with CC. The Monaco S Series semi monocoque chassis was last built in a limited way when Navistar was completing coaches and using chassis in inventory when they purchased the assets of the old Monaco. They actually built the Dynasty on a different chassis which was not semi monocoque toward the end of their ownership. The new coaches build on a semi monocoque chassis are limited to Foretravel and Newell.

If it appears that I like to say "semi monocoque" a lot, I do. It's the design that results in the strongest, stiffest platform on which to build one of these big, heavy coaches. The design uses welded steel framing in the house, with lots of steel bracing and a well braced ladder type chassis. This actually incorporates the house into the chassis and spreads the load and forces through the whole structure. The downside is that all that steel, while strong, is heavy. A heavy chassis means that the drivetrain and suspension parts must be sized accordingly. The result however, is an extremely strong, supremely well balanced coach. Last time I got a 6 point weight, my coach was out of balance side to side by 40 pounds. That is out of a total weight of just over 42,000.

These older semi monocoque coaches represent a tremendous value to prospective owners.
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Old 06-30-2016, 08:26 AM   #38
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These older semi monocoque coaches represent a tremendous value to prospective owners.
Agreed. I consider the older Dynastys to be the best bang for the buck. Many can be had for under a $100k. Add a $30k renovation and they outshine any thing new for under $500k. Yes, I am a little biased. The same could be said for a Country Coach Intrigue.
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Old 06-30-2016, 08:41 AM   #39
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Agreed. I consider the older Dynastys to be the best bang for the buck. Many can be had for under a $100k. Add a $30k renovation and they outshine any thing new for under $500k. Yes, I am a little biased. The same could be said for a Country Coach Intrigue.

You may be "a little biased", as am I, but that doesn't mean that it isn't true. The Roadmaster chassis, including the S Series, had one design shortcoming and due to the work done by Van Williams and his confederation of engineers, machinists and outside the box thinkers, that shortcoming has been overcome. With a modification or two, the average Roadmaster coach can be transformed from average handling to perhaps the best in the motorhome business.
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Old 06-30-2016, 08:51 AM   #40
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OK Steve,
you opened the door, I bit. What is the short coming?
I had a Monaco Knight (8 airbags - RR8R) and loved the way it handled. Curious what would have made it better?
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Old 06-30-2016, 09:15 AM   #41
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OK Steve,

you opened the door, I bit. What is the short coming?

I had a Monaco Knight (8 airbags - RR8R) and loved the way it handled. Curious what would have made it better?

Van Williams, who I referenced, is a very astute guy. He's a master machinist/engineering type. 2-3 years ago, he was trying to tame the handling for his late 90s Dynasty. He had the bright idea of putting a 8' pipe into the receiver on the rear of the coach. He had a couple of guys apply force to the pipe from side to side while he observed the action of the H frame which carries the axles and is the attachment point for the air bags and shocks in the Chrysler designed Roadmaster chassis.

He discovered that because the design only incorporated one Panhard Rod, that the H frame could "squirm" causing the axles to change the direction they were pointing very slightly. As you might guess, this is not a good characteristic. Van & Co designed two add-on components. Cross bars between the trailing arms and a Watts links. These two components, sometimes one and sometimes both, can be added to both front and rear H frames to eliminate the unwanted movement. The other issue can be free play in the steering box. Monaco used two vendors for steering gear. The TRW which has a free play adjustment and the Shepard, which doesn't. This group of guys worked with a component vendor and now most Roadmaster chassis that used the Shepard can be swapped to a TRW.

They guys have provided a path for any Roadmaster owner, who is unhappy with the handling of his coach, to make it the equal of the best on the road.
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Old 06-30-2016, 09:16 AM   #42
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New.

My father has a 10 year old top of the line Newell. I have been the one to take care of it over the years other than the many trips to Miami, OK to have the factory work on it. I can tell you it is currently costing a fortune to maintain it. The Waste Master system has quit working properly and Newell does not have the parts to properly repair it. Lippert no longer supports this particular model either. I am currently at my desk waiting on the SubZero repairman to get here.
The sway bar on the front end broke last year. It took Newell 2 months to get us the part from ZF. The Head Hunter water pump alone is $1200 on Amazon. He's gone through 3, I've replaced them all.
Rear driver slide seal blew out 2 years ago. Back to Oklahoma. Rear curb slide mechanism failed last year. Back to Oklahoma where they had to pull the slide out to replace. At his cost, of course. It just left him stranded on I-16 outside of Savannah. Detroit Diesel road service call was over $1000. I just approved the bill(we have an account with W.W. Williams) I could keep going. lol
Newell factory support is great! This thing just cost a fortune to keep running.
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