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Old 05-13-2013, 03:37 PM   #29
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If you need to buy older on a budget just do the homework. Which you are doing on this site. I have bought 3 old coachs. A Beaver, A Safari and now own a HR Navigator. All have been good to me but they age faster than newer coachs. Hence...3 of them over 16 years. Buying high end DP's in older models helps a lot because they had the best that manufacture offered. Good luck.
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Old 05-13-2013, 03:57 PM   #30
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The key IMHO is to buy the flagship of the manufacturer that has been well looked after and drive the beast every chance you get!

DaveS
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Bulldog,

Considering your purchase constraints, I would say this is the best advice I've seen in this thread. Not to say you can't find a nice lower end coach, but by choosing a flagship coach the odds of getting a well built coach are significantly increased.

I kind of think of these old flagship coaches like fine old yachts. When well taken care of they just get better with age.

Your mileage may vary.
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Old 05-13-2013, 07:10 PM   #31
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Bulldog, like you we wanted a used DP below $60,000 for the same reasons you have. We looked at 50 coaches. No kidding....50 right on the number and we kept notes on every one we inspected and test drove. I think Foretravel was the only one of the above mentioned coaches we didn't look at. I'm a nuby and Foretravel probably wasn't even around in the early 2000's. Anyway, we didn't know Monaco from Winnabago from Newmar to Fleetwood!! This was going to be our first MH. We were primarily interested in how the coach was taken care of, if it had maintenance records and if it fit the livability and decor we felt comfortable with. When it comes to 10+ year coaches it comes down to how the previous owner(s) took care of it and the model was secondary. Let me say some upper end models turned us off cold!! Now if it is a well known model plus it was well taken care and it fits your desires that's even better. But I agree with one of the posters....absolutely if it has been stored inside dry storage an older coach will perform brilliantly for you for the investment you make. Good luck. PS....half the fun was just looking!
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:58 AM   #32
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Hello all !

I am new to this forum and need some help. I am currently in the hunt for a 1998 - 2004ish Diesel Pusher, with a price limit in and around the $50k mark. This will eventually (2 years) become our Full timer rig. I have seen a Monaco Windsor, a Safari Cheetah, and a Winnie Ultimate, all in the 38-40ft. range. Back in these earlier years, which were the high end / Top of the Line units ? If you had to rank rigs of this age whcih are at the top end and which are at the bottom. Any to stay away from all together ??What about engine size ?? Back then 38-40 footers had 275 / 300 / 330 HP motors and I notice the newer ones have much higher HP ratings. I plan to tow a Ford Edge. Another thing is I have to have a King bed which is very limited, mayybe non-existent in these years. My thought was to find a unit that does not have a Queen slide, but has a North-south Queen (front to back), eliminate one of the night stands, and modify the usual overhead hanging cabinet to get a King mattress in there. Has anyone tried this. Pics please if you have. What other things should I be concerned about in models these years. I know serive / Maintanence records will tell the story of most drivelines and the cleanliness / condition will tell how it was taken care of. How long are Tires good for from the date stamp ? What is the cost of a set of new tires ??

That is all I can think of right now. I thank you all in advance for your help sorting this out. By all means if you are in the Michigan area and know of or have this type of rig for sale, let me know !

Mike
you are on right track ,iown a 40 ft. fleetwood.
from my vast experience don't buy anything that's been along the coast for any length of time,
the salt air will rust everthing inccluding furniture.
on a diesel pusher 80,ooo miles is nothing,also some are well lived in

look in arizona,but watch lot of them come for florida or the texas gulf

if you need more info email me rolandh@mts.net

good luck
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Old 05-15-2013, 08:53 AM   #33
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Ccssr / lac

Well we have seen a few coaches and are getting a feel for what we like and do not. The sad part of it all of the 5 coaches we looked at 4 of them were for sale due to the owners mates passing on. 2 of the 5 have not been used in a couple of years and it showed. On one, a Monaco Windsor, it had a buble of sorts running up and down along the side. I am thinking delamination, but when it is pressed on there is no give or tin canning. We have a couple more set up to see this weekend, a 2002 Gulfstream Friendship, a 1999 American Dream, and a 2001 Newmar Dutch Star. Proior insight to the in's and outs of these models would be appreciated.

Thank you again everyone for their help in our search for our next home.
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Old 05-15-2013, 01:05 PM   #34
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Well we have seen a few coaches and are getting a feel for what we like and do not. The sad part of it all of the 5 coaches we looked at 4 of them were for sale due to the owners mates passing on. 2 of the 5 have not been used in a couple of years and it showed. On one, a Monaco Windsor, it had a buble of sorts running up and down along the side. I am thinking delamination, but when it is pressed on there is no give or tin canning. We have a couple more set up to see this weekend, a 2002 Gulfstream Friendship, a 1999 American Dream, and a 2001 Newmar Dutch Star. Proior insight to the in's and outs of these models would be appreciated.

Thank you again everyone for their help in our search for our next home.
The American Dream got a fiberglass roof in 99 as I recall (check this with the owner/dealer).

Spartan Mountain Master Chassis with side radiator and independent front suspension, Cummins ISC engine (8.3 liter displacement) rated at 325 HP if memory serves. Allison 3060 six speed transmission.

Cabinetry will be all wood and fit and finish should be excellent.

Lot's of storage, large tankage and should drive like a dream (no pun intended).

Aircraft quality full body paint. If it has been well looked after she should still gleam from a exterior finish perspective.

American Coach, Spartan Motors, Cummins and Allison all give fantastic customer support and service.

DaveS
1998 American Eagle 40EVS
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Old 05-15-2013, 01:23 PM   #35
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I'm a nuby and Foretravel probably wasn't even around in the early 2000's.
My parents had a 1983 Foretravel bought new and delivered at the factory.
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Old 05-15-2013, 03:18 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by bulldog2655 View Post

... We have a couple more set up to see this weekend, a 2002 Gulfstream Friendship, a 1999 American Dream, and a 2001 Newmar Dutch Star. Proior insight to the in's and outs of these models would be appreciated.

Thank you again everyone for their help in our search for our next home.
BullDog,

Back in 2001, the Dutch Star DP came in 2 configurations. One was a on a Spartan Chassis with a Cummins ISC330. The other was on a Freightliner Chassis with a Cat 3126 (300-330hp).

The Dutch Star with the Spartan chassis was considered an up-sell and they did charge more for it. As I recall the Spartan/Cummins configuration was about $20K more than the Freightliner/Cat, all other options being about the same.

Back then I test drove both one day. The Freightliner with a solid beam front axle had a nice tight turning radius. The Spartan had IFS (Independent Front Suspension). In the parking lot the Freightliner was easy to maneuver, but once out on the road it was clear, the Spartan was the better driving/handling/riding chassis... by a lot.

Also, the Spartan/Cummins came with an Onan quiet diesel generator, while the Freightliner/Cat combination came with a not as quiet Generac (if memory serves).

Just something to keep in mind when you're looking at the Dutch Star.
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Old 05-15-2013, 08:25 PM   #37
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You should be able to find a nice older D/P for that kind of $$. But Diesel Motorhomes are complicated machines, when you are looking at 9-10 + year old coaches they are not going to be problem free, everything will wear out. I have owned my 1999 Foretravel for 8 years and love it, fixing to be full timing in it. However I do all of my own work and my around to list never seems to get shorter. As others have said older coaches become a hobby, if you are not somewhat handy your service and repair costs may get on up there. I have a friend with an 06 Dynasty and his costs are around 5K per yr. Happy hunting.
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:13 PM   #38
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We manage a RV storage business, and what we have heard and experience is:
Tires: $3600.00 avg. Recommended age on front tires 5yrs. Rear 6yrs.
RV vales: NADA low retail to 5% below low retail
Most all Motor Homes need work, new and old. It's good to have a extended warranty. Older Motor Homes need to be updated; most do TV’s and floors.
There are thousands for sale in that size. It seems the upper end models have fewer problems. (But not always)
Problems: Slides, batteries, Satellite Dishes, Air Bags, dash A/C, fuel problems,
jacks, and steps.
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:35 PM   #39
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Older Motor Homes need to be updated; most do TVís and floors.
There are thousands for sale in that size. It seems the upper end models have fewer problems. (But not always)
Problems: Slides, batteries, Satellite Dishes, Air Bags, dash A/C, fuel problems,
jacks, and steps.[/QUOTE]

Yep.....you just about hit them all. Hopefully they will be good now for another 10-12 years.
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Old 05-16-2013, 09:10 AM   #40
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Thanks again !

Thanks again for all the helpful info. I would have never know that there were two complete different Powertrain / Chasis for one model of Coach as in the case of the Dutch Star. Is this common ?

I am looking forward to seeing these three units this weekend...........

Stay tuned !

M
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Old 05-16-2013, 10:44 AM   #41
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A lot of good advice on here Bulldog. Just try to find one that is mechanically sound and you can work on it. I like my 2006 HR Ambassador because I can work on it. The Cummins motor and Allison transmission is a plus. Good luck and safe travels.
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Old 06-18-2013, 09:07 PM   #42
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Originally Posted by bulldog2655 View Post
Thanks again for all the helpful info. I would have never know that there were two complete different Powertrain / Chasis for one model of Coach as in the case of the Dutch Star. Is this common ?

I am looking forward to seeing these three units this weekend...........

Stay tuned !

M
Bulldog

I was in the same boat as you, but fortunately I live in Tucson. There were several units in your price range. I bought a 1999 Newmar Dutch Star this April, with the Spartan chassis for $31,000. It only had 22,500 miles, but as other people have posted, it needed updating. We have had it checked out mechanically before purchasing and got a "punch list" from the mechanic. In our case, the most expensive repair was replacing front tires. The other maintenance was relatively inexpensive. We have reupholstered the original flexsteel furnishings and are updating the flooring, electronics and blinds. Based on my experience, you can meet your financial goal and have a nice unit. Ours drives great and has everything a newbie would need. Good luck!
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