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Old 02-27-2014, 07:47 PM   #15
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I test drove a front engine diesel one time. Do not remember the brand and model but it was a brand new unit they pulled out of the showroom for me to drive. Got in started it up. turned right out of the parking lot drove to the first spot to turn around, turned around and went back to the showroom apologized for all the effort they went to and said not interested. At an idle sitting in the front seat my wife and I could yell and hear each other. At the big 40 miles an hour I got up to you could not even yell. In my DP we chat, we plug the ipod in and listen to Public Radio "Wait, Wait, don't tell me. I could never have done that with the front engine. I do not know enough about front engine diesels to answer your questions so I will ask some questions here and see if someone else can answer them. Do most front engine diesels have jake brakes. I would not imagine having to drive without that. Do most of them have air suspensions. Once again the ride is very nice with the air bags. Do any of the FREDS have independent front suspension. These would be important differences to me based on comfort ease of driving etc.

Why do diesels cost more to maintain. 28 quarts of oil, Gallons of coolant, Considerably larger parts. Heavy duty nature of parts. I have seen people say that the DP radiator for their unit costs 4000.00. More parts. Gas engines do not have hydraulic coolers, charge air coolers, Air compressors, High pressure fuel pumps, Lift Pumps, A new gas engine might cost 5000.00 a new diesel might be closer to 30,000. Labor charges. The shop I take my DP to has a labor charge sign. 100.00 for semi trailer tractors. 125,00 for motor homes. Personally with the difference in accessability I do not think they have enough of a difference.

Hopefully that will help
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Old 02-27-2014, 08:13 PM   #16
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We own a 2008 Gulf Stream FRED and are extremely happy with our choice in coaches. We decided to purchase this unit because it met majority of our requirements. My husband wanted additional towing power as he pulls a 20" trailer loaded with one of our antique cars. I also like a mid entry layout giving which gives us a more sectional living environment. The engine noise was not a deterrent for us... it's a tad bit louder when you first get going but then it quickly levels out. NEVER do we have to yell at each other as we are driving...unless the DH does or say's something stupid...lol. I am disappointed that most companies no longer are producing the FRED as we would definitely by one again.
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Old 02-27-2014, 08:51 PM   #17
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Don't you also lose some basement storage? No pass thru with a drive shaft in it' place?
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Old 02-27-2014, 08:57 PM   #18
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I had a FRED and get a bit frustrated by needless FRED bashing.

I chose it. It is well engineered.

It is not noisy or hot up front as some may assume. The doghouse is well insulated and the air flow over the motor is superb. At cruise you can hear a slight diesel click and turbo hum.

It is mid-entry, which we love.

It needed no handling fixes and gets 10.5 to 12.3 mpg.

It was $70K less when new than the same length DP.

I cannot answer for the Bounder FRED, but I would not cast it off forthwith.

Best wishes to the OP.

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Old 02-27-2014, 09:25 PM   #19
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Yes to he pass thru but there is still ample space for all of our needs.
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Old 02-27-2014, 09:31 PM   #20
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Yes to he pass thru but there is still ample space for all of our needs.
Many FREDs have a rear pass-thru. Mine did.
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Old 02-27-2014, 09:33 PM   #21
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Test drive them all c what works for u a lot of opinions in these boards go by what they have I've been in a lot of front engine motorhomes never yelled to talk to somebody they must be making that up nobody could sell any of them if everybody had to yell
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Old 02-27-2014, 09:58 PM   #22
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This puller isn't loud inside, only time it gets a little noisy is when the fan kicks in on a hard grade.
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Old 02-27-2014, 10:25 PM   #23
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I drove a friends FRED once for about 200 miles. It had leaf spring suspension and was louder at cruise than the gassers I've owned. Power was nice and it pulled hills just fine. I don't remember it being hotter than gasser's. Personally if I needed or wanted a diesel I would get a DP.
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Old 02-27-2014, 11:28 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gemini5362 View Post
I test drove a front engine diesel one time. Do not remember the brand and model but it was a brand new unit they pulled out of the showroom for me to drive. Got in started it up. turned right out of the parking lot drove to the first spot to turn around, turned around and went back to the showroom apologized for all the effort they went to and said not interested. At an idle sitting in the front seat my wife and I could yell and hear each other. At the big 40 miles an hour I got up to you could not even yell. In my DP we chat, we plug the ipod in and listen to Public Radio "Wait, Wait, don't tell me. I could never have done that with the front engine. I do not know enough about front engine diesels to answer your questions so I will ask some questions here and see if someone else can answer them. Do most front engine diesels have jake brakes. I would not imagine having to drive without that. Do most of them have air suspensions. Once again the ride is very nice with the air bags. Do any of the FREDS have independent front suspension. These would be important differences to me based on comfort ease of driving etc.

Why do diesels cost more to maintain. 28 quarts of oil, Gallons of coolant, Considerably larger parts. Heavy duty nature of parts. I have seen people say that the DP radiator for their unit costs 4000.00. More parts. Gas engines do not have hydraulic coolers, charge air coolers, Air compressors, High pressure fuel pumps, Lift Pumps, A new gas engine might cost 5000.00 a new diesel might be closer to 30,000. Labor charges. The shop I take my DP to has a labor charge sign. 100.00 for semi trailer tractors. 125,00 for motor homes. Personally with the difference in accessability I do not think they have enough of a difference.

Hopefully that will help
Needed to yell even at idle! Really? My wife and I sit and chat while listening to Sirius, no yelling necessary.
Regarding equipment I can only speak to what we have on our Vesta. I know it handles beautifully with air suspension and brakes. It also has a massive pass thru compartment at the rear. We like it a lot. Did I mention, 12 mpg on average while pulling a toad. Not bad for a a rig weighing 32000 pounds.
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Old 02-28-2014, 07:51 AM   #25
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The rear axle can be located further forward for better turning radius and thereby allowing for the rear pass-through compartment. Cooling will be better with the radiator and intake in front benefiting from the cold ram air. Dash heat in the wintertime should be actually effective compared to a DP. The price is supposed to be less than a DP. The door can be located further back and many like it better there. I do as it allows the cabin to become a permanent sitting area when parked.

Those are the major benefits I can think off. The downsides appear to have already been presented very adamantly. From what I have read, the noise thing is not much of an issue with the modern diesel engines. The way I think of it is it is perfect for people who like Gassers and their floor plans and just wish they could have a diesel power plant.
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Old 02-28-2014, 09:04 AM   #26
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BGOSH! I have never been in Love with any inanimate object. Must be doing it wrong. Send Tiffin MH an email and ask if they will custom design one with your taste in mind. Also, there are several places in the US that will gut an older one and customize the inside like you design. Working with the customer all the way through. There are other forums discussing that subject. Please don't put full quotes in your reply. Nobody needs to read them twice. A diesel is cheaper to run per mile driven as most will alst about 750K if taken care of and will turn better fuel mileagge usually. The avg for a 350-400 HP diesel is between 9 and 14 MPG on a motorhome. Pulling a trailer loade with a car and personal junk like a golf cart will cut it to 7-9 at best. Anyone says they get higher does'nt run up and down hill and west of I 95 and isn't running a 40,000 lb GVW rig.
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Old 02-28-2014, 10:04 AM   #27
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I thought I had all This straight and then WHAM. Fleetwood Bounder classics have the option for a Diesel engine up front with air ride on a freight liner chassis!

Where do these things fit in the Pecking order?
I'll throw one more at you, my friend has a gas pusher. It's an '88 Four Travel, 34ft, 460 Ford engine. The chassis is huge and has 22.5 tires.
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Old 02-28-2014, 03:59 PM   #28
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Needed to yell even at idle! Really? My wife and I sit and chat while listening to Sirius, no yelling necessary.
Regarding equipment I can only speak to what we have on our Vesta. I know it handles beautifully with air suspension and brakes. It also has a massive pass thru compartment at the rear. We like it a lot. Did I mention, 12 mpg on average while pulling a toad. Not bad for a a rig weighing 32000 pounds.
I am glad yours is quiet I do not know what to say. I test drove a brand new one. We were very interested in it. The unit was priced where we wanted to be and my wife loved the floor plan. I figured that it might be a little bit noisier than my diesel pickup because those are pretty quiet. We literally started it up and drove it around the block. I was amazed at how noisy it was. I do not mean yell as in scream at the top of your voice but you definitely had to raise your voice quite a bit to be heard at idle. When accelerating out of the parking lot we did not even try to talk over the noise. We drove to a turn around about a mile down the road drove back to the parking lot and told them we were not interested. I am not going to speak for anyone else and I will ask my wife what the brand was but it was too loud for any kind of comfortable conversation, music etc. It might have quieted down some on an interstate just cruising but I did not have any interest in driving it that far. I went instead and spent about the same money on a used DP and I am extremely glad I did. For those of you with your FRED coaches that love them I am glad you do. That is why there are different makes and models of MH. The Poster asked for opinions and I gave mine. There are others with different opinions posting and the OP can go to a dealership and test drive one. All of the dealerships I went to were more than happy to get one out were I could drive it. The fred I drove was on a show room they had to move other stuff to get it out. The motor home I bought was in a corner of the lot with a bunch of other vehicles in the way it took about a half hour to get it out. I am sure the OP can find a dealership within easy driving distance to test drive whatever he wants.
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