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Old 03-11-2012, 09:58 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by dlovitt View Post
After a lot of $$, we realized that wasn't what we really needed.

As far as I'm concerned, there are no "needs" related to RV'ing.
Let's face it, no one "needs" and RV, it's just that we all "want" an RV.
So basically all RV concerns are "wants"........and I want more.

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Old 03-13-2012, 11:27 AM   #16
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RV without a toad is tough. I pulled a trailer for years, but I could use the tow vehicle. With the motor home had to have a toad.

We pull through the mountains - Montana, Washington State, Nevada, California, Utah, etc. several times a year.

Your budget will have some significance regarding what you wind up with, but bigger is better! More room and easier to drive (contrary to what you might think). Some other questions to consider -
*What time of year will you travel?
*How many people in the RV?
*How often and for what duration will you use it?

If you will be traveling in cold weather you want to consider an AquaHot. How many people dictates floor plan and interior amenities. The more often you use it and a longer duration each time will push you towards a bigger coach.

Tag axles are more stable and more comfortable to drive, and less susceptible to winds. Big engine (500hp or more) means hills are less of an issue.

The big thing to remember about mountain driving is that going uphill with a smaller engine means you will be slow, but going DOWN hill without a true engine brake (or a Jacobs brake) is scary and requires more caution. An engine brake will keep your speed down without using the service brakes.

Good luck.
Thank you so much for the information
My wife and I main only one granddaughter 4 months old
Out west we would travel summer
South more in the winter
Our main goal is to drive the east and west coast
The reason we are thinking 30 ft or less. We would like to be able to drive the motor home everywhere we go and not be too big.
We have traveled a lot and strayed at hotels then went to cabins and condos but now we would like travel without suit cases. We have done a lot of the big cities for a week at a time. Driving out west we would like to stay for a 5-7 days in different areas (we love to hike on day trips). There may be as many as 10 trails in one stop but they only allow certain lengths and we do not want to be limited to where we can go once we buy. We are not planning on being gone over 6 weeks at a time 2 to 3 times a year. We are looking to use it to keep from the suit case living and not having to eat out all the time. We got tired of eating out so that is why we went to cabins and condos
Thank you
Greg
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Old 03-13-2012, 11:39 AM   #17
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Lets face it you are ignorant of what you're ignorant of. I was in the same boat. Go to rv.org pay what they're asking, it will be the best money you'll have spent on the rv you eventually will buy. It's worth it!!! Then when you figure out what kind of coaches you're interested in go to oodle.com plug in what you're looking for. They search all over the web and pull from multiple sources then they will email you with daily updates of what you're looking for. When you find the coach you're interested in plan on spending some time and $$$ to go to where it's located and check it out top to bottom inside and out. You will find some scams out there that sound too good to be true. Well they aren't. Generally the seller will always be unavailable to show you the coach. Remember you will get lots of advice from a lot of folks. This coach has to fit your needs and wants not someone else's. Spend the time and effort it takes to find what you want at the price you want. Good luck
Thank you I looked up the sites!
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Old 03-13-2012, 12:48 PM   #18
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I think the advice to start used is spot on. If you think you want the ease of use in a shorter class C, that is what you should buy! If you find eventually that you want more space and can handle an A. Then trade up.
We have been through every type of camper/trailor, long and short. Even had a nice little class C that we loved. Our current rig is a 40 foot used class A and we hope to start fulltiming in the next few months. If we find that this rig is not the best fit for us, then we will find one that is.
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Old 03-13-2012, 04:33 PM   #19
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I have never owned and RV. I am searching for information on purchasing a Class A motor home. I was thinking Class C but members have suggested I ask about Class A's. I will be traveling in MT areaís what is the longest I should I be looking at. What size engine? Looking to buy used with low mileage. I would all so like to know proís and conís on U-shape tables and split bathrooms. Going to the RV show next week. I would like to know thinking I should be looking for. Any help would be very much appreciated.
Seeing that you've probably already been to the show, maybe you've come away knowing more about what you want. As far as what you're saying, we wanted a model with an enclosed bathroom..it gets warmer on cold days, and you're not showering in the hallway, or having to close off part of the rv when you use the shower. Second, the u-shaped dinette is too cramped and tough to get in and out of unless you are on the ends. Find the floor plan that suits you best. Good luck, you're headed into a great adventure!
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Old 03-13-2012, 04:45 PM   #20
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As many on that other forum told me...'Buy your last RV first'. If you're committed to a 30' rig, make sure it has at least one slide.

I'm in a 37', no slides, DP, and after 8 years finally feel the urge to update. To a 37' dbl slide DP. With two people, on the road for weeks, bigger is truly better.
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Old 03-14-2012, 12:56 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by Sequim Guy View Post
As far as I'm concerned, there are no "needs" related to RV'ing.
Let's face it, no one "needs" and RV, it's just that we all "want" an RV.
So basically all RV concerns are "wants"........and I want more.

.

This is an untrue statement. I did not WANT an RV. I NEEDED one because well, try living 6 years under an 8x6' tarp and see how much you NEED to have a warm dry place to sleep, ANY warm dry place...even a 22' metal box on wheels.
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Old 03-14-2012, 02:28 AM   #22
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I have never owned and RV. I am searching for information on purchasing a Class A motor home. I was thinking Class C but members have suggested I ask about Class A's.
I understand where you are coming from; just a short while ago, I was like you. The MH I have now is my first RV, and I spent 3 years researching, testing, and going in and out of RVs of all shapes and sizes, while I tried to figure out what I wanted.

First off, if you want a Class C, than don't let any one talk you out of what YOU want. Remember, just because THEY prefered a Class A, doesn't mean YOU will prefer it too!

When it comes to Class A verses Class C, both have good and bad points, and each is better at some things and worse at some things. It all depends on your personal tastes and lifestyle, for which will be better for you.

In my case, it's just me, 16 cats, a bird, 7,000 comic books, a few hundred paperback sci-fi/Star Trek books, my D&D DM supplies, several board games, a couple of cookbooks, 6 plastic pink flamingos, a plastic garden gnome, a hot plate, a sandwitch maker, a Magic Bullet mixer, a waffle iron, a toaster oven, a sewing machine, and a computer. Everything fits in the cubbies under the dinnete beanch seats, under the sofa, in the closets, or in the hanging cabinets. I've still got 5 empty cabinets not being used right now.

I'm in a 22' Class C, and really I've found I have more room than I know what to do with. I could probably have gotten a smaller, say 19' Class C and still have plenty of spare room.

I do not have a basment, however, so no storage space for large items, say if I wanted to bring a pair of skis or an inflatable raft with me, I'd have no place to put them. But sice I don't have any big things to take with me, it's not a problem. I think the biggest differance between As and Cs, is the basment or lack of. Class As have them, Class Cs do not.

The next big differance is the bedroom and bed. Class As have a bedroom with a queen size bed. Class Cs not only do not have a bedroom, there also is no bed. Class As, usually have a bed, a sofa bed, a dinnett bed, and a pull down bed which hangs over the driver's seat. Thus most Class As sleep up to 10 people. Class Cs on the other hand, may or may not have an overcab bed, may or may not have a dinnete bed, and often only have a sofa bed. Class Cs thus sleep 2 to 6 people in most cases, depending on what is included bed-wise. A few large 32'+ Class Cs, also have a bedroom.

So when juggling Class A verses lass C, the biggest questions to ask yourself is: do I need a basement or not? Do I need an extra bedroom or not? If you don't need the extra storgae and you don't need to sleep 10 people, than chances are high that you don't need a Class A.

When I have visitors (which happens often) I have room to comfortably seat 9 people or comfotably sleep 5 people. For visitors this is no promblem, however, if I was traveling with other people, I would say that 2 adults could live fulltime in this 22 footer quite comfortably, IF they didn't get on each others nerves, and 3 adults could live together for a short time (trips lasting a few weeks), if they were really chummy, but 4 or more is not recommended for more than a weekend trip. I would not recommend a MH this size for fulltimers with hildren, however, due to the fact that kids just plan need lots of room to bounce around, and well...even though the outside is 22' long, inside, the actual livable space measures at just 12' by 8', which is just too small to allow children room to play.

I spent 3 years searching, and like you, I started out looking for a Class C, than was persaded by others to focus on Class As, which I did. As you can see, I went back to what I originally wanted and bought a Class C. Well, actually I started out looking at trailers, before MHs.

I had never been in an RV until about a year after I decided I was moving into one. At first I thought I could living in a 12' teardrop towed behind my Volvo. WRONG! I had never been inside of one so I had greatly misjudge how small a 12' teardrop was.

Than I decided I needed a 20' travel trailer and spent 6 months looking at them before anyone told me it was illegal to let pets ride in the trailer while it was moving - they have to ride in the truck; well that's okay if it was just 1 dog or 2 cats, but heck, I've got a bird and 16 cats, no way they are going to fit in the truck!

I crossed all trailers of all types off my list and set out to look at motorhomes next.

When I first started looked for a MH, my first thought was for a Toyota Dolphin. At first Toyota was the only thing I would look at. I "looked" at a bunch of them, before actually setting foot inside of one (a 19 footer). First thing that happened was I hit my head on the door. Than I got inside and had to stand leaning over to avoid hitting my head on the ceiling. Hit my head on the door again, on my way out. I was only in the thing maybe 10 minutes, and I knew right off, no way I was going to be able to live in something that small. Maybe if I was under 5' tall I could live in it, but I'm not very tall at 5'6" and there was not enough headroom for me to stand up inside without hitting my head, and the entry door must have been only 5'4" because I really had to stoop low to get in and out and I still hit my head both times. I still like them and all, but I'm just too tall to live comfortably inside of something that short on headroom, so they got crossed off my list.

Next I decided a 35' Class A was the thing for me and spent THREE YEARS looking at them, than found one I realy wanted, and almost bought it, but than I did something I had never done before: sat in the driver's seat and turned the key. Uhm...yeah...okay, maybe it's the perfect size to live in, but how the heck am I supposed to drive this thing? YIKES! I never thought of that part before!

I ended up getting a 1975 22' Dodge Sportsman Class C, which with an 11' clearance, has plenty of headroom for me to walk around inside, and being built on a van body wasn't so big that I freaked out sitting behind the wheel of it.

I almost bought a 12' teardrop, a 25' travel trailer, a 19' Toyota, and a 35 Class A...each time I was all set to buy without ever having set foot inside the thing. Each time, it was going inside and walking around in it, that made me realize I had greatly misjudged what I was getting myself into. I am glad I did try before buying, each time, because if I had bought first and tried later, I would have been stuck with something I could not use. It took quiet a few years of looking at RVs of all shapes and sizes, before I finaly realized which one was right for me. But still even after all of that, the first time I ever slept in an RV was not until 5 days after I had bought one!

The lesson I learned was, you can look at and research all you want, but until you actually try it out, none of that research means squat, so always try before you buy!

Me I'm a long time tent camper and love the minimalist lifestyle, so moving into an RV was no problem, seeing as I was moving into a bigger place, not a smaller place. But if you are living in a house, than you'll be moving into a smaller space when you move into your RV and I would imagine that'd take more getting used to, than moving out of an 8' tent into a MH like I did. So, yeah, I agree with what others are saying...rent one for a few days or weeks and see if you can tolerate living in 35 square feet of total house. The average house has 1,500sq' of living space, so dropping down from 1,500 to 35 is a HUGE change, that you may or may not be able to do. My 22' Class C has 12'x8' of actually "house" inside of it once you minus out the bathroom, closet, and stove, which is double what I had in the 8'x6' tent, so I've got twice as much living space now than I did before moving into my MH, so I had no trouble at all adjusting to the "small" square footage. If you have a lot of "things" than it may be even harder for you to adjust because you have to not only move into a home 1/100th the size of your house, but you are moving into it, w/o taking anything with you. It could be a lot harder for you to adjust that you realize, so yeah, I would suggest you rent an RV and live in it for 6 months or so, than see if you still want to adopt this lifestyle or not.


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Originally Posted by RV-Michigan View Post
I will be traveling in MT area’s what is the longest I should I be looking at.
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Originally Posted by RV-Michigan View Post
Mt Areas- we live in Michigan will traveling to Washington State Son Lives there, Montana, Ca coast, the east coast. Wife is from Georgia so no matter which way we go its some kind of Mt.
My wife and are retiring next year so just the 2 of us mostly.
Campgrounds & National Parks mostly
We know that when we are RV'ing it will be no less than 6 weeks and 4 times a year.
No we are not planning on towing.
Thank you
In mountain regions, shorter is better. The more mountains you plan to climb, the shorter it should be. The bigger it is, the more it weighs. The more it weighs, the faster it'll blow out the transmission. And going it without a TOAD, plan on buying a new transmission by the end of your trip. Smaller MHs are better for mountain driving, but they are also too small to tow a car, should you decide to add a TOAD later. My 22' Class C could tow a small car or a motocycle, but not at the same time it was driving up a steep mountain road.

Know too than NEARLY ALL mountain roads have posted weight limits (usually the maximum weight is posted at 14,000), and many have "no through trucks" signs. This will effect what you can buy, as you'll have a hard time finding a Class A that weighs LESS THAN 15,000lbs. Most 22' to 28' 1980's vintage Class As weigh in at 13,000 to 15,000, while the 1990s+ ones can top 23,000, putting them way out of bounds for use on many mountain roads. Class Cs typically weigh much less than Class As of the same length. My 22' Class C weighs in at 10,500lbs.

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Originally Posted by RV-Michigan View Post
What size engine? Looking to buy used with low mileage.
Can't help you with engine stuff. I know mine has a 440 V-8, but other than that, not a clue.

It's not hard to find low mileage though. Mine was 36 years old and only had 68,000 miles on it. Most of the MHs I looked at over the years had between 45,000 to 83,000 miles on them. (I will point out that I looked at MHs mostly in the 1970s - 1980s age range, because I was also looking to not pay more than $3,000 for my MH. I paid $2,000 for the one I eventually bought.) Ones that spent a lot of time parked in campgrounds had lowest miles. Ones that were owned by fulltimers had highest miles 100,000 to 200,000 or more.

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I would all so like to know pro’s and con’s on U-shape tables and split bathrooms. Going to the RV show next week.

When I first started looking I thought I wanted one of those U-shapes dinnetts with the wrap around bench seats. Love 'em! Loved the look. After sitting in every type of seat and table combo imaginable though, I came to realize that I actually prefered sitting in the traditional bench-style seats. I decided on a table and bench combo which converted into a bed. This is the bed I sleep on, as it's wider and longer than the sofa bed, so it fits me and all 16 cats on it all at once. The convertable aspect made this table style much more practical for me. The U-shaped style did not convert to a bed, nore did it have storage compartments underneath, and seeing as I eat sitting in lotus postition on the floor, it was impractical for me to have a table to befin with. The only time I use the table is for my sewing machine, and the u-shape table would not have been practical for sewing on. So in my case it had a lot of cons and the only pro was that it "looked nice", so I crossed u-shapes tables off my list.

Split bathrooms? Eh...I could live with them, but I'd rather have a nice big bathroom, with a big tub to lay down in, and an actual toilet (not one of those shower seat things) and a nice vanity sink, with cabinets and mirrors, etc. Yes, I know, it's unusualy to find a regular full-sized bath room, complete with locking door, but I found one. The reason my 22' MH has only 12' of living space, is because the back several feet of the MH is a big full sized bathroom, complete with a nice big regular house tub (not one of those dinky tweeny rv tubs). The bathroom did not come with this MH...the previous owner custome built it, because his wife wanted to have a nice full sized bathroom when they went on camping trips so she wouldn't have to use restroom toilets or bath house showers, or be stuck in a tiny claustrophobic rv 1/2 bathroom. That was the first thing I said to the seller when I was looking at it: "OMG this thing has a regular bathtub!" than I turned to my boyfriend and said: "I want it! This is it! This is the one I'm buying!" And I did, I bought it the very next day. I love my giant full sized bathroom with it's great big tub!

3 years of walking through countless rvs, this was the first one that had a bathroom I could be truly happy to live with. All the rest it was...eh... I had grudgingly told myself early on that if I wanted to live in an rv, I was just going to have to get used to these tiny sink in one closet toilet as a seat in a shower in the cloest across the hall, set-ups, because that's what just about every rv I looked at had in it and I wasn't thrilled with them.

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I would like to know thinking I should be looking for. Any help would be very much appreciated
As I mentioned above, you really have to look at your lifestyle now, and see what you like and don't like. How big is your house? How are the rooms laid out? If you could change one thing about your bathroom, what would it be? Why? What about the bedroom? Dining room? Kitchen? Now think about what you do and do not like about your house, now compact it down and transfer this from 1,500 square feet of living space into 35 to 75 square feet of living space.

You didn't ask, but think too about the kitchen. If you like to cook big homemade meals, you'll need a larger sized kitchen with full size stove and oven (both rare finds in rvs). If you plan to eat out most times, than a kitchen would be wasted space...there are rvs without kitchens in them. Mine has a fullsized stove top and half sized oven. I've yet to use either. I'm thinking of taking them out and putting more shelves in. Like I said, I've got a hot plate, a sandwitch maker, a Magic Bullet mixer, a waffle iron, and a toaster oven - all packed neatly into one of the cubboards. These are all I use to cook with, so I don't need the stove or oven. I have not yet used the fridge either, I've never even turned it on. Right now I'm using it as a pantry for my canned and boxed foods. I'm thinking of taking it out and putting a pantry cloest in it's place.

Slides are another thing to consider. You can double the size of your MH with the bush of a button. But if you have pets or children/grandchildren under the age 8, you should avoid slides like the plauge. Cats, dogs, and children are notorious for getting run over, crushed, twisted up, delimbed, or even killed by slides as they are moving in or out. You mentioned a 14month old baby, so I woul advice you avoid any RV with slides.

Also, think about such things as awnings. Do you need an awning? Yes? No? Why? Why not? If it doesn't come with one, can you add one later?

But these are the sorts of things you want to think about. Make a list of what you need, what you don't need, and what you want. Than look at MHs making sure they have your "needs", avoiding those which have the "don't needs", and trying to find ones with both "needs" and "wants".

It's a long process because there are so many choses out there. It can be hard to figure out what you'll use and what you'll need. I know - it took me 3 years to sort it all out and decide on what MH I actually wanted to buy.
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Old 03-14-2012, 09:31 AM   #23
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I think EelKat's post may be a record for length! Holy cow, I don't have the half hour to read it!

She makes one point to consider - if you plan to consider that length, you should consider a C or a Super C. There are some very good units out there.

One point I think she gets a little carried away with is the death threat that slide outs present. We travel with up to 8 dogs in our 42 ft coach (we go to dog shows and sometimes we load up pets and show dogs). Pretty hard to imagine moving the slides without seeing where the baby is, really.
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Old 03-14-2012, 09:38 AM   #24
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I will comment on two other things - we have a split bath, and the fact that you can separate the toilet from the shower is HUGE. We used to have a trailer with a combo and it could cause real stress on occasion.

Second, the aqua hot is generally only available on bigger, more expensive coaches, but when you can take a 15 minute shower compared to a 2 minute shower, it makes you like your coach a lot more. Of course this only applies when you are on water and sewer.
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Old 03-14-2012, 09:37 PM   #25
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Seeing that you've probably already been to the show, maybe you've come away knowing more about what you want. As far as what you're saying, we wanted a model with an enclosed bathroom..it gets warmer on cold days, and you're not showering in the hallway, or having to close off part of the rv when you use the shower. Second, the u-shaped dinette is too cramped and tough to get in and out of unless you are on the ends. Find the floor plan that suits you best. Good luck, you're headed into a great adventure!
Thank you, for the information. It is very helpful! They are two of the many things we are trying to find out from people who have them. Just looking and actually using them day after day is totally different. We have decided on the bed that you can walk around thanks to iRV2. Looking at them it did not seem to matter, but night after night crawling over someone does matter. My wife "HATES" a cold bathroom and not enough hot water.
Thank you,
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Old 03-14-2012, 10:19 PM   #26
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I will comment on two other things - we have a split bath, and the fact that you can separate the toilet from the shower is HUGE. We used to have a trailer with a combo and it could cause real stress on occasion.

Second, the aqua hot is generally only available on bigger, more expensive coaches, but when you can take a 15 minute shower compared to a 2 minute shower, it makes you like your coach a lot more. Of course this only applies when you are on water and sewer.
Thank you, my wife is making a list of the pro's and cons. We are very interest in what people are saying that have them. We have found out that looking and using is totally different. The bed took only one night to decide walk around. We are looking at 2007 or newer. Hoping not to spend over $60,000. We are wondering about leaking on the slide outs? We were thinking U-shaped table for the Granddaughter.
Any information is very welcome!
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Old 03-14-2012, 10:23 PM   #27
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I think EelKat's post may be a record for length! Holy cow, I don't have the half hour to read it!

She makes one point to consider - if you plan to consider that length, you should consider a C or a Super C. There are some very good units out there.

One point I think she gets a little carried away with is the death threat that slide outs present. We travel with up to 8 dogs in our 42 ft coach (we go to dog shows and sometimes we load up pets and show dogs). Pretty hard to imagine moving the slides without seeing where the baby is, really.
Thank you, We are wondering about leaking on the slide outs? We are looking at 2007 or newer. Any information is very welcome!
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Old 03-14-2012, 10:34 PM   #28
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Slideouts on modern motorhomes are problem free. Yhey rarely leak and almost never break.
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