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Old 05-03-2012, 05:34 PM   #1
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Ford Super Duty Owner
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 19
Newbie question on a new to me coach===

I'm currently looking at purchasing a DP for my upcoming retirement. I don't wish to jump into a newer model to start with so I'm looking for info on reliability for 2 1997 coaches. One is a HR Endeavor with 1 slide and the other is a Fleetwood American Tradition with 1 slide. Both coaches are very clean and well taken care of, they are both priced the same, but the tradition has a 300hp cummins plus a Banks and the HR a 275 Cat I believe. I would appreciate and info and thank you in advance. I really enjoy reading this site.

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Old 05-03-2012, 06:28 PM   #2
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Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Chaffee, MO.
Posts: 399
Hey CoachK, first, welcome to the Forum, sure you will get some great advice here.
Ok, several things come to mind.
1. Floorplan of the Motorhomes, which one offers the best, for you floor plan, and which one does the Mrs like?
2. What is the DOT age of the tires, 5 years old caution, 7 years old big flag, 10 years old, have the tires replaced BEFORE YOU BUY or have about 4000.00 deducted from the price.
3. Mileage, which has the most, not necessairly bad but should be taken into consideration. 125k on this year Motorhome would not be a problem for me, if there are good maintenance records for the coach.
4. I think both of these coaches are about the same as far as quality, I do like the 300 HP a little better, will help on those mountains and pulling a toad.
Saying that, I have a little 270 ISB in my Expedition and love it, gets great fuel mileage and pulls my 2011 Dodge 4X4 Crew cab with no problems.
5. I like two slides, but that's just me, some folks like none cause then you aren't going to have a problem with slides And with only one, only half the problems
6. Look at the roof's, I believe each of these should have a rubber roof, inspect them and check the caulking around each of the items on the roof for possible leaks, inside and out.
7. Open all the cabinets along the walls and check for leaks lots of times leaks are hidden by cabinets and such.
Well that's about everything I can think of right now, course make sure EVERY item in the coach works. Fire up the Genset, make sure it is providing power to the coach, check the Fridge, give it an hour to start to get cold. It won't be very much after only an hour, but it should be noticably cooler. Check all the major appliances.
Ok, that's it for me
Again Welcome to the Forum and post us some pictures when you make a decision and get it.

Happy Trails

MGySgt USMC(R) 1961-1991
2001 Fleetwood Expedition
2013 Jeep Wrangler Sierra Toad
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Old 05-03-2012, 06:52 PM   #3
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Gulf Streamers Club
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Cincinnati
Posts: 17,845
How about the age, condition of the tires? Interior layout? Condition of carpet, any sign of leaks? Both engines are highly reliable, they both have allison transmissions. All appliances work? Generator hours? size? These factors should have weight in decision to buy. I bought '98 coach and I am very satisfied with it. I know that it hasn't depreciated since I bought it, where a new coach looses value at a steep rate for quite a while. I think you're wise in letting someone else take the 'big hit' in price drop and also let them get everything corrected and working properly for us to take over!

Bob & Donna
'98 Gulf Stream Sun Voyager DP being pushed by a '00 Beetle TDI
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Old 05-03-2012, 07:56 PM   #4
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Carolina Campers
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 23
Sitting here in a campground in rural North Carolina thinking I was in the same situation as you last June. I ended up with a 40í 1997 Safari Continental Diesel Pusher with 38,000 miles. Itís just me and my wife so we looked for a unit with no slides, did not need the extra room and no slides means one less thing to cause problems. It has a 300 HP Cat, Allison transmission. I bought it at a fraction of itís retail price and have been 100% satisfied with the purchase. Only thing it needed was a full chassis service and I did that myself for less than $500. In 97 the Continental was the flagship of the Safari line. The previous owner had it for 12 years and had taken meticulously good care of it. Everything looks and works like new. She had put new tires on it in 2009 and had put less than 2000 miles on them when I got it. I may be the exception on getting a 97 that looks and works like new, but everyone who has seen it on the inside has been totally surprised and cannot believe the quality of workmanship and craftsmanship inside this coach. Everything inside is solid oak construction, more cabinets from front to back than you can imagine. What Iím saying is if you donít mind having a coach with a little age, you can save a ton of money and have a unit just as good as the one others paid several hundred thousand dollars for and every time you go camping, just smile as you drive down the road and think about all that cash you saved. One more thing, mine has the diesel Aqua-Hot heating system and it heats the house like you would not believe and you cannot run out of hot water, it heats it quicker than you can use it, plus no propane heaters to make you worry about carbon monoxide gas. Good luck and Happy Camping
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