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Old 06-27-2010, 11:30 PM   #1
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desertvince's Avatar
Tiffin Owners Club
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Tucson, AZ
Posts: 103
Thoughts on Purchase Candidates

Purchase candidates.
This is probably not the usual request for information and comments, but here is the invitation anyway.
We are looking to buy a used DP, probably in the ’03 to ’08 model years, although something slightly older in a higher end coach might work as well. We want 32 to 36 feet with at least 2 slides, maybe three. The budget is $80k to $120k. Looking over the major Internet RV listing websites, here are the names that are popping up. The invitation is for those that have these rigs to express their enthusiasm, their unhappiness, and “heads up” warning about some aspect/condition/equipment of these rigs. All these rigs are ’03,’04,’05,’06,’07, or ’08:
Winnebago Journey 36G and 32T / Itasca Meridian 36G
Monaco Cayman 36PDQ / La Palma 36WBD / Windsor 36 PST / Knight 36PDD
Holiday Rambler Neptune 36 PDD / Ambassador 34 PDD / Endeavor 36TS / Vacationer 34PDD
Fleetwood Expedition 34 M / Discovery 35H / Bounder 34H
Newmar Kountry Star 34 and 36 PDD / Ventana 3331
National Tropi-cal T350
Gulf Stream Crescendo 8356 CRE / Yellowstone 8359
Forest River Tsunami 3508QS
ALFA See Ya 36D / Founder 35 LS
Damon Astoria 3465
Safari 36 PDQ / Simba 34 SBD
Also seeing for a little more money ($150k), all 36 ft. rigs: National Pacifica, Tiffin Phaeton, Beaver Monterey, Western RV Alpine, Gulf Stream Friendship.
In advance, thanks for your time and comments.

Vince & Patricia, Carson City, NV, FMCA, RVMutants#130
With: Ch. "Carrie", Std. Schnauzer & "Sophie" Cocker
'06 Phaeton 40QDH + '11 Fiesta w/ AirForceOne.
"It is more important to know the journey is the destination than to get there quickly."
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Old 06-28-2010, 09:10 AM   #2
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Newmar Owners Club
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Posts: 4,589
My advice is to narrow this list down to three or four. The list you provide is way to general to comment on.

2007 Newmar DSDP 4023
Discovery is seeing what everyone else has seen and thinking what no one else has thought.
If you want to see what man made go East; if you want to see what God made go West.
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Old 06-28-2010, 08:42 PM   #3
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Jamul CA
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RVCG disks are a good reference 36+ handle better

Vin and Pat,

I spent two years looking to replace my previous class A gas coach. I have been in the machinery business for work for over three decades and I wanted to make sure I got a good machine when my wife and I bought a coach we hope to keep for a while. The search ended last Nov and we spent more than we planned and bought longer than we originally looked for. Our price range was approx what yours is. Although I can tell you prices have gone up since this time last year.

I have belonged to the RVCG (RV Consumer Group) for almost ten years and a little over a year ago I bought their reference motor home CD set that covered nearly every motor home and model made 1993 - 2009. Thousands of them. Those disks give you a really quick reference to the vital stats over motor homes like chassis length, towing rating, CCC capacity, tank capacity, and much much more. These disks were by far the best reference guide I could find.

IMHO from the coaches we drove DPs generally handle better 36'+. I am not saying there are no good handling DPs less than that, but I will say that when I was test driving a bunch of them the longer ones were easier to drive. We started out looking for something 30'. We found zilch we liked. We did try a FRED chassis 33' 4" but no pass through storage and it was front engine.

Motor homes vary a lot, and that is because they are a personal preference. Some folks like motzart and some like led Zepplin. My wife and I found that the basics we needed in a coach were 1. pass through basement storage and preferably with slide out racks / pallets. 2. Durable high quality interior with real wood and high quality / damage resistant components. 3. At least two slide outs. And no front passenger side slide out. 4. Air ride. 5. Rear motor.

We looked at a wide range of motor homes and found we liked the higher end little bit older coaches better than the newer not so nice ones.

If you want a very good consignment internet site go to the one in Houston PPL. They are a great source of well / fairly priced quality coaches. Also check ebay, rvtraderonline, and rvsearch.

For us the ranking of coaches in our price range

1. Foretravel - But the prices are a problem. Very very good quality.
2. Country Coach - Quality on their Intregue and Affinity coaches at least as good as Foretravel. Less cost than Foretravel.
3. Alpine - I will get lots of disagreement on this choice, but I stand by it. Very good quality coaches for little money. The best driving DP you can buy. Prices driven down by them being out of business.
4. Beaver - the loveliest interiors on any coach. Be careful you make sure the chassis is long enough and not overloaded. These are very nice coaches, but you have to be picky to get one with the right chassis.
5. American Coach. Lovely coaches in several models. They do not come on custom chassis liek the four previous brands.
6. Monaco - very similar to Country Coach in model range. But the company was started by the same man so no surprise.
6. Later model Dutch Stars are excellent buys and a lot of coach for the money.
7. Dynamax - These are super Cs, but great coaches.
8. T, W, and N - Three in business mid range suppliers are Tiffin, Winnebago, and Newmar. All sell similar DPs. IMHO the quality on all three is good. There are some people very partial to the Tiffin brand. And Tiffin makes many very good coaches, but also a lot of ones with chassis too short and not enough CCC's. Same can be said about W and N. The mid to lower range models from these companies will have only OK interiors.
9. Fleetwood - good mid range supplier. They own American Coach.

Hope this helps and I did not offend any coach partisans. All above ratings are just my humble opinion.
Bob & Barbara
2002 Country Coach Affinity
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