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Old 08-03-2015, 09:29 AM   #15
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Just my opinion here:
If you are prone to worrying excessively, buying an rv may not be your best choice.
I am serious here.

If cost is a huge concern, the cost of a gas rv will make you feel better than air ride suspension or other features with a dp.
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Old 08-03-2015, 12:11 PM   #16
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Thanks for all the replies.

I am not ‘prone to excessive worrying’, but like to have an idea of possible scenarios. I spent half of my life in academia and the rest as a small business owner…researching is in my DNA…can’t help myself.

Like I mentioned, we only use it for vacation trips. We enjoy our trips, but in the end, it has a low priority. What got my attention were the horror stories of people getting hit with excessive repair bills. I think we’ll buy a warranty if we go the DP route.

SteveLevin: I just looked at one yesterday, at our local campingworld. They asked way too much (about 40k more than the internet offers) and it was kind of rough inside. I did not test drive it. The idea is interesting but I wonder if the torque isn’t a bit low (c.460) for a coach that size. We live in the NW…mountains everywhere around us.
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Old 08-03-2015, 12:50 PM   #17
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I also had the same thoughts earlier this year when I began shopping for a used MH. I can't afford a new one, and gas seemed to make more sense to me, at least for now. I found very quickly that I could get a much newer coach in better condition with a lot less miles if I bought gas.

I'm retired from a big 3 automaker and for the last 5 or 6 yr of my career, it seems 90% of all I did was look at failed diesels. You are right - diesel repairs are extremely expensive. Its not just the labor, the parts are insane. I might add that nearly all the failures I looked at were owner-induced, and usually not warrantable failures. Lack of maintenance and pure abuse leads the list. I was just gun shy of going diesel, especially for my first foray into a MH. The other thing is that while yes the air suspension is nice, it also can be expensive to repair as well. Had I known more when I was shopping I might have looked for one of the Winnies with the UFO rear gas. I would love to have the engine in the rear just for the noise factor, although the 8.1 chevy is a very quiet engine. Its the fans that make the noise when they spool up. Now, having said all that, I may try a diesel in a couple of years if we decide to continue this little adventure. It would have to be a pre-07 unit though to stay away from the DEF.
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Old 08-03-2015, 12:57 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by RndmTraveler View Post
Thanks for all the replies.

I am not ‘prone to excessive worrying’, but like to have an idea of possible scenarios. I spent half of my life in academia and the rest as a small business owner…researching is in my DNA…can’t help myself.

Like I mentioned, we only use it for vacation trips. We enjoy our trips, but in the end, it has a low priority. What got my attention were the horror stories of people getting hit with excessive repair bills. I think we’ll buy a warranty if we go the DP route.

SteveLevin: I just looked at one yesterday, at our local campingworld. They asked way too much (about 40k more than the internet offers) and it was kind of rough inside. I did not test drive it. The idea is interesting but I wonder if the torque isn’t a bit low (c.460) for a coach that size. We live in the NW…mountains everywhere around us.
RndmTraveler,
It's not uncommon for folks like yourself to think ahead when it comes time for purchasing a diesel RV. If you've not been around diesel engines for your life like I and, many others have, it probably is a sort of "new world" so to speak. But, a couple of items here.

1. Diesels have been around since the dawn of man. They have undergone some serious improvements to prolong longevity, service life, fuel mileage, and a lot more, just like their counter parts, the GAS ENGINE!

2. Emissions and the regulation of them, have taken their toll on the manufactures of diesels. CAT even dropped out of the "over the road" engine production due to not wanting to cope with emissions issues. I understand they may be getting back into it though.

3. Another item, you state you're read of "horror stories" of the cost of repairs on many of these RVs. Well, while you may have read of some of the cost issues, here on IRV2, what's not represented here are the hundreds of thousands of diesel owners out there that have thousands and thousands of miles on their coaches, trouble free but, do not belong to IRV2 or, any other RV forum.

4. Gas coaches can run up the bills too when it comes time for Engine/chassis/transmission/brake repairs.

I certainly don't fault you for being precautious. It's a good trait. But, don't limit yourself in life due to a FEW reports of some higher repair costs of "DIESEL" coaches out there. You will get a nicer ride, without a doubt. But, the reason(s) for a nicer ride are:

1. Larger, heavier frames
2. Larger, heavier duty, higher rated tires
3. Air ride suspension.


We are limited use diesel owners too. Based on all the "so called" parameters for purchasing or, owning a diesel coach, i.e. more than 7,000 miles a year, full timing, and other "parameters", we should not own one vs the cost of owning one vs a gas unit. But, we've owned three gas units prior to what we have now. Two class Cs and one Class A Bounder. Our present coach, an '04 Itasca Horizon, 36GD with the C-7 330HP CAT and full body paint, is a fabulous coach with a great floor plan. We've owned it for right at four years now and have put 20K on it for total of 60K on the clock.

It rides very nice and quiet. it's got really good power for the actual weight it's hauling. That CAT engine, has been great. I change oil once a year which, for this particular engine is, a total of 19 quarts and, a single, two-quart filter. The cost hovers around $62.00. I've got only ONE fuel filter on this coach. It too is changed once a year for a total of about $35.00

So, do yourself a favor, don't just take the word of a few in a situation such as you're facing. Grasp the BIG picture and then, make a decision.
Scott
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Old 08-03-2015, 01:03 PM   #19
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I'm on my second MH, second DP, and travel about half as much as the OP. My first MH cost me a few thousand dollars, but only $95 for the engine (oil/filter). The rest of the money went for things that would need repairing whether gas or diesel.


22.5" tires + air ride suspension + rear engine (lack of noise) + ride comfort (many fewer downshifts going up grades) + resale = I like our choice.
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Old 08-03-2015, 06:01 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RndmTraveler View Post
Thanks for all the replies.

I am not ‘prone to excessive worrying’, but like to have an idea of possible scenarios. I spent half of my life in academia and the rest as a small business owner…researching is in my DNA…can’t help myself.

Like I mentioned, we only use it for vacation trips. We enjoy our trips, but in the end, it has a low priority. What got my attention were the horror stories of people getting hit with excessive repair bills. I think we’ll buy a warranty if we go the DP route.

SteveLevin: I just looked at one yesterday, at our local campingworld. They asked way too much (about 40k more than the internet offers) and it was kind of rough inside. I did not test drive it. The idea is interesting but I wonder if the torque isn’t a bit low (c.460) for a coach that size. We live in the NW…mountains everywhere around us.
I can appreciate the power question; that said, you can flash the 8.1 for a bit more power, and it won't be any slower than any other gas 26,000 pound motorhome. It won't be the fastest thing around, for sure, but it'll get you there. Surprisingly or not, my 300hp/950tq ISC isn't as fast as you'd think at 28,000 pounds, because of gearing. I just flat out run of horsepower on big grades and can't carry 5th gear, so I am stuck at the top of 4th at 50mph on the 6% grades. Of course, if I get cut off and drop to 20mph I can get back to 50mph with relative ease, so it IS a bit of cheating

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Old 08-03-2015, 06:09 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RndmTraveler View Post
Thanks for all the replies.

I am not ‘prone to excessive worrying’, but like to have an idea of possible scenarios. I spent half of my life in academia and the rest as a small business owner…researching is in my DNA…can’t help myself.

Like I mentioned, we only use it for vacation trips. We enjoy our trips, but in the end, it has a low priority. What got my attention were the horror stories of people getting hit with excessive repair bills. I think we’ll buy a warranty if we go the DP route.

SteveLevin: I just looked at one yesterday, at our local campingworld. They asked way too much (about 40k more than the internet offers) and it was kind of rough inside. I did not test drive it. The idea is interesting but I wonder if the torque isn’t a bit low (c.460) for a coach that size. We live in the NW…mountains everywhere around us.
First, stay away from Camping World if you can. Some will argue this but most will relay a bad experience after they sign on the bottom line. It's a crap shoot. Some are OK, most not so much. Second, plenty go slowly up the mountains with 800ftpds of torque. I like my 505 HP and 1650 Torque.
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Old 08-03-2015, 06:27 PM   #22
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Given the low usage I cannot fathom why anyone would pay all that extra for a diesel. The rest has been said.
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Old 08-03-2015, 06:32 PM   #23
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Scared of possible Diesel engine repairs...

Go for it, you'll love a DP. 340 hp Cummins, Allison 2500 transmission. 2011 Winnebago Journey Express 39N. Twin bunk beds, king size two zone select comfort master, washer driver, 4 TV's (All Samsung HD including the one outside and outside stereo), wireless headphone DVD players in the bunks, satellite radio, satellite TV, incredible surround sound, electric fold out queen size couch, and another couch fold out, Norcold four door with ice maker works flawlessly, great layout for viewing without turning sideaways (I would hate that!) , dinette with extension to seat 6, three way camera, electric seats, Roadmaster tow package with Invisibrake (don't even know then truck is back there), Been over 12,000 foot passes and everywhere you can dream of.

8.5 MPG towing in mountains, 10-11 mpg without TOAD, one gallon of DEF every 1,000 miles, no smoke, no diesel smell, clean, efficient.

8,500 KW Onan QuietDiesel works flawlessly. Three roof a/c's can freeze you out at over 100 degrees outside temp, 40,000 btu heater toasty in the winter.

This model was only made in 2011 and 2012 and are hard to find, but worth the search.



Three 6 week 6,000 mile trips and not a single problem. No extended warranty. Only oil and filter changes, greasing and keeping it in perfect shape. Wouldn't trade it for a Prevost. Researched for years before finding this one.

Air brakes, air suspension, Michelin XRV's - drives and rides soooo comfortably. Never even feel a Semi pass by, solid as a rock, fingertip steering - - "fortunately" rented a gasser for a two week trip before buying this -wow--straining, whining, (slow, slow over passes), and heat from the 'doghouse' -- wouldn't even consider buying one.

Guess we got lucky!

Treat a diesel well and it will run longer than you will ---REALLY!

IMO, you're worrying about something that you don't need to worry about if you choose wisely. Chances (unfortunately) of something much more tragic in life are greater. Can't go through life worrying about stuff that likely won't happen, it's the things we aren't expecting that change our lives forever... Find a good one, built well, and maintain it and you'll have no problems. TONS of info on the web.

Life is very short - be comfortable - be happy!


Lol

Cheers!

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Old 08-03-2015, 06:53 PM   #24
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Every thing I own is diesel , hell no I ain't scared of them .... if it needs to be hauled or pulled a diesel will be doing it for me .. I'd be scared of burning up a gas rig in a traffic jam at a 110 in the summer .. But I do like the older diesels without CPUs ... an I do my own PMs on mine..
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Old 08-03-2015, 07:41 PM   #25
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I Don't think Scared is the right word but more like Apprehensive would describe the concern's.Well you've heard from most of the Diesel Guy's and a few Gasser's as well ----- Just think it over and decide what is best for you and yours ! If $$ is an issue and your going to keep it in storage most of the time you need to reading more on here as long term storage of either a Gasser or a DP will be detrimental to it's Health.
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Old 08-03-2015, 07:45 PM   #26
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I Don't think Scared is the right word but more like Apprehensive would describe the concern's.Well you've heard from most of the Diesel Guy's and a few Gasser's as well ----- Just think it over and decide what is best for you and yours ! If $$ is an issue and your going to keep it in storage most of the time you need to reading more on here as long term storage of either a Gasser or a DP will be detrimental to it's Health.

"Scared" was in the OP's own words, see title of this thread.

Agree with the rest!

Cheers!
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Old 08-03-2015, 08:03 PM   #27
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I've got a rear radiator Holiday Rambler ISB Cummins. I keep hearing about how hard it is to get to the alternator belt,(change it at 10 years or 50k) and other maintenance items. My 1998 Endeavor had maintenance records showing every detail including each fill up the time and date of each trip and mileage etc. You're really buying the maintenance history in an older coach, if you can't verify that, I'd find another coach. In my opinion, radiator placement is really a non issue if you find a coach you like in good shape. You get extra storage compartment with a rear radiator too!
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Old 08-03-2015, 08:25 PM   #28
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the only advice I can give is to not buy over your head. Don't buy a diesel if you think a single, high cost repair is going to sink you. You're also buying an older unit that might cost you other repairs due to age other than the power train. I know you said you can do your own house repairs, but I assume you want to be enjoying your unit, not constantly repairing it.

I'm glad I got a DP. It's A 2014 with basically the same Cummins engine going into 10s of thousands of new pick up trucks these days. As long as I keep up with the maintenance I should do just as well with this as all my other vehicles. I've read the horror stories too. It doesn't keep me up at night
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