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Old 07-05-2018, 04:57 AM   #1
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Older Diesel Class A help

I am looking for a 1999 to 2005 Diesel Class A motorhome up to 40 feet. I am not sure which model would be better and not sure where would be the best place to look. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Any ideas on what not to buy or what to look for would be great. If there is another forum covering this topic please let me know. Thanks. Herb
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Old 07-05-2018, 06:27 AM   #2
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Here are some candidates that I would consider:


https://www.rvtrader.com/American-Ea...e%7C764834333&
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Old 07-05-2018, 06:36 AM   #3
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I have a 2002 Beaver Patriot Thunder.... Great Coach!
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Old 07-05-2018, 06:44 AM   #4
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I would second the American Eagle suggestion. I like the older mechanical 8.3 Cummins but maybe that is just me. Spartan chassis are also used for fire trucks.
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Old 07-05-2018, 07:37 AM   #5
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I bought a 2001 Alpine Coach 3 months ago. I looked at RVs for a long time before I found the right combination of coach, condition, and price. The biggest disappointment for me when I was searching was how many people are trying to sell RVs without getting the units ready to sell. In SC, they are several bussinesses that are buying older motorhomes for resale. I believe that they normally travel to Florida to buy wholesale. One guy in upstate SC has 30-40 coaches on display. Their lots are a good place to go and see a lots of coaches without a lot of travel. Some buying advice.....reserve 15-25% of purchase price for repairs and upgrades in 1st year. FWIW, I bought a maintenance plan to cover my motot home in the event something major happens.
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Old 07-05-2018, 07:45 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by herbc View Post
I am looking for a 1999 to 2005 Diesel Class A motorhome up to 40 feet. Thanks. Herb
Herb,
A diesel engine made before 2006 is a good choice. Less emissions (less complications) and easier to fix., and more reliable (IMO).

But I would not go older than 2002 or 03, as some of the coach systems/parts become hard to locate when you get too old. And these items will fail just due to age (even if not used/low mileage).

Even on my '05 some of the items are hard to find. I don't mean engine parts (no problem there) but coach systems (like the Aladdin monitoring, Inverter, Electronics). That means instead of replacing a single part of a system (like one Aladdin module that is no longer avialable) you have to upgrade the whole system to current technology.

Coach builders, of high-end coaches, like to use the latest technology - and therefore some stuff that was top-end technology in 2005 (for example) ends up being replaced with some other model/brand top-end gear after a year or two, which makes it obsolete and hard to find when you need to replace something in 2018.
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Old 07-05-2018, 07:50 AM   #7
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We kind of like ours. There are lots of pre-DPF/DEF rv's out there. We may be going to one of those upstate SC lots tomorrow just to look depending on weather.
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Old 07-05-2018, 08:09 AM   #8
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Watch out for Monaco products built on the R4R or RR4R chassis equipped with a Monaco Gold suspension. These chassis were used on certain model-year 2002 through 2009 Monaco, Holiday Rambler, Safari, and Beaver motorhomes. These motorhomes had a significant problem with rear trailing arms cracking. My 06 RR4R left rear trailing arm cracked in two, and it still drove fine -- scary -- cost about $4,800 to replace both with upgraded parts. Lots of info online, Google RR4R trailing arms. Love my 06 Safari and the C7 Cat. Ride like a dream and purrs like a Cat. No DPF/DEF = yea!
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Old 07-05-2018, 08:13 AM   #9
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We just bought an 04 Dutch Star from an original owner. We looked for 3 months to find one that didnít look like rock stars lived in it. We found it on Facebook in a group called Class A Motorhomes for sale. Ads were nationwide. Good luck and donít rush into something you will regret
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Old 07-05-2018, 08:18 AM   #10
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My two cents are Country Coach on this one. Country Coach built nice solid and well built coaches. They are one of the top coaches still on the road. We are CC fans for sure. Now let me also say there are many other coaches that are older and as good or better than CC too. I don't know as much about other brands so I am sure you will find much advice on here. Do your homework on service records and inspections. It took us some time to find our unit and it came along and we bought it, love it. Good luck in your search and welcome.
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Old 07-05-2018, 09:34 AM   #11
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Older Diesel Class A help

From my experience with my older DP, I would lean toward a brand that survived the 2008 economic downturn and is still in business today. In the less-than-premium market (no Prevost, MCI, Bluebird, etc.) that would be Newmar, Tiffin, or Winnebago. Of the three, I think that Winnebago (and, by extension, Itasca) has the best documentation of the coach systems and parts, which is an advantage for the DIY maintainer. Each have their strengths and weaknesses.

Take some time to read the threads in the various brand-specific forums, and think about how you would solve the problems that you see without manufacturer support. If you are undaunted by orphan products (as I am, with some caveats) you have a larger selection from which to choose. I would pay particular attention to the complex and obsolete integrated systems controllers (often tightly-integrated multiplex computerized control systems for nearly everything in the coach) and think about what will happen when they no longer work.

Whatever you buy, I would lean heavily toward a Cummins engine with Allison transmission. Other stuff is out there. Caterpillar, Mercedes, Detroit Diesel, etc., make fine products, but I think that you will spend less over time, and have an easier time finding parts and service, with the Cummins/Allison combination.
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Old 07-05-2018, 09:47 AM   #12
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Quote:
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My two cents are Country Coach on this one. Country Coach built nice solid and well built coaches. They are one of the top coaches still on the road. We are CC fans for sure. Now let me also say there are many other coaches that are older and as good or better than CC too. I don't know as much about other brands so I am sure you will find much advice on here. Do your homework on service records and inspections. It took us some time to find our unit and it came along and we bought it, love it. Good luck in your search and welcome.

X2 on Country Coach and Newmar (Dutch Star, Mountain Aire).


Foretravel would also be a good builder to consider.


All solid choices in addition to the American Eagles that I gave you the link to earlier.
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Old 07-05-2018, 09:54 AM   #13
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Find the coach with the floor plan that best fits your needs and makes the DW happy within your budget.
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Old 07-05-2018, 10:03 AM   #14
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WOW! Thanks for all the responses and good advice. I amin no hurry and will study well. Always helps to gather expert info from users like you guys. Anyone know the place in upper South Carolina that has the motorhomes?
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