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Old 03-06-2016, 12:38 PM   #1
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Time to upgrade!

My wife and I are newly retired, and after RVing/camping basically every year for the last 40 years, find it's time to upgrade to a Class A motorhome, as we've basically have done it all up to this point, where we went from a bumper pull trailer, back to a slide in camper with a slide on a dually pickup, which works well for those times you want to venture well off the highway to a more 'comfort' situation, although we will sometimes pull a vehicle OR our 18' enclosed trailer with quads.
We do have somewhat of a budget set, and we'll be keeping our home (possibly rent?) as we are still unsure of excessively long trips, as we're quite close to our kids/grandkids.
We know, after borrowing our inlaws Gas 36' motorhome a time or two, that we definitely want to go Diesel pusher this time, both for the better ride, but mainly for the ability to use an exhaust/jake brake for holding us back on the hills. Being new at looking into diesel pushers (and a current Class 1 with air holder) I've driven semi's that have a 3 stage exhaust brake, and so far I'm only seeing a single stage on the motorhomes I've looked at online. I'm unsure if there is a 3 stage e-brake as an option on motorhomes, where depending on the percentage of the downgrade, and the weight you are handling (trailer and goods) where it may be necessary?
As I'm sure everyone knows, there is a myriad of brands/types/options, and I'm just now working on that list! We'll be buying used, and I know 'mileage' isn't quite as important, where these diesels truly do stand the test of time if maintained well (current pickup has a diesel) which I can do much of my own maintenance, but how important is going with a higher HP diesel? I'm not one that likes to hold up traffic...or, to have to plant my foot to the floor to get up many of the mountain hills we see here in the Pacific Northwest of Canada.
I know I'd like a powered awning, possibly Michelin tires, refuel from either side, central vacuum, washer/dryer and full tile floors. Dishwasher would be nice, but often they are only in specific units, and of course there is a myriad of other options that just makes life easier...especially if boon docking. Would love to see top-end solar panel systems on more unit's, but they are far and few between, so that might be something I'll have to do on my own? LED lighting, possibly chairs rather than two couches, a computer station/sewing table for the wife, and of course a hydraulic levelling system are a few more that come to mind.
I often wonder how many of you prefer a slide in type of dinet, over the table & chairs setup? Do the chairs tend to vibrate of move during driving? I assume power front shades only come on a specific year on up, but that too is probably important, especially for those times you've been on the road since 6 AM, and now find your still driving into the evening? Bluetooth possibly for cell phone usage?

We see specific options we probably wouldn't want, albeit on some models you don't get the choice when buying used, a couple being the outside television, another we're finding we're not real keen on the main tv being above the drivers station, or dual bathrooms.

I've always found it's good to talk to folks that have gone through this process in the past, and to learn from either mistakes made, or the valuable information they have on their own research and owning unit's in the past! If there is anything that comes to mind, or advice/suggestions, please feel free to pass it on, as it would be welcomed.

Thanks for your time.

Dale
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Old 03-06-2016, 01:09 PM   #2
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Dale
Have you looked in the Classifieds here. There is a new listing on a 2008 Allegro Bus also in Canada there is a 2006 Country Coach Allure 430.
When I got mine a side radiator was #1 on my list because I do all my service work and the floor plan was good with the BH.
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Old 03-06-2016, 01:36 PM   #3
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In order for folks to help out we need to know what the budget is. Mid 2000 Monacos have most of what your looking for, except maybe the TV location. You can remove the sofa and put in a desk/ tv there. Those seem to be in the $100K-175 range.
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Old 03-06-2016, 01:56 PM   #4
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In order for folks to help out we need to know what the budget is. Mid 2000 Monacos have most of what your looking for, except maybe the TV location. You can remove the sofa and put in a desk/ tv there. Those seem to be in the $100K-175 range.
Well, I'm a little more liberal with what I'd pay, but my wife is the prudent one, so we'll have to see where we end up at on that. One thing to remember, with us being Canadian, the timing couldn't be worse, where we have to add approx. 40% to the price (current $ difference) and then taxes on top of that. My wife would like to stay under the $100k, where I'm more liberal and may add another 50K, although after taxes we may even be higher 'yikes'! As you know, just 'using' the unit, the costs can be generally higher than living at home, so we're not ones that tend to like to stay put for long periods of time, so we'll initially be 'seeing the sights' for the first couple of years anyway! Just did a 10,000 km trip to the Yukon and Alaska this past summer...but it was so nice, one more may be needed one day, but I love to get behind the wheel and drive!
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Old 03-06-2016, 02:02 PM   #5
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Dale
Have you looked in the Classifieds here. There is a new listing on a 2008 Allegro Bus also in Canada there is a 2006 Country Coach Allure 430.
When I got mine a side radiator was #1 on my list because I do all my service work and the floor plan was good with the BH.
2 stroker
I've slowly been looking online, but find there tends to be more unit's generally in the east, and one can't just pick up and fly to see every different unit, so as time goes on, if one comes up that looks very promising, we'll make that sacrifice. My wife tends to think a 36' QSH Phaeton would work well, but I personally don't mind going out to 40' myself, and find there are many more 40's out there. Oddly, pricing can be all over the map, and I'm not sure why, as one unit can be nearly identical, with similar mileage, yet can be $20 - $30k more, so figuring all this all out, and hopefully finding the unit we like without regrets and the need to change in the next few years is worth putting in the research now. We've mainly been looking at Tiffen and Newar unit's, but we are definitely open to looking at other brands as well.
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Old 03-06-2016, 02:47 PM   #6
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Just asking,what part of the U S do you want to look for an RV.
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Old 03-06-2016, 02:57 PM   #7
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We didn't get a three stage (low, medium and high) engine brake till we got the present rig with an ISX. The previous ones all had on-off exhaust brakes.
The other very effective braking is the Allison retarder but the only ones that I know of that use it are Foretravel.
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Old 03-06-2016, 02:57 PM   #8
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Just asking,what part of the U S do you want to look for an RV.
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Willing to fly to any part of the U.S. for the right unit! Saw one with a chair & workstation (rather than couch) on one unit, which had my wife perk up in a hurry! I prefer the cherry bark cabinetry....wife isn't fussy, and washer & drier are necessary. Not trying to be especially fussy, but once one is found matching most of our needs, flying to see it would be the next option, wherever it may be.

Not seeing a lot of unit's with solar energy systems, which by now I thought more folks that 'boondocked' would have that particular option? Same as for having the 'In motion satellite system' which would be a nice option.

Thanks.
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Old 03-06-2016, 03:01 PM   #9
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but I love to get behind the wheel and drive!
Same here, especially with the rig we have! Sometimes the trip/driving is better than the camping at the end!
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Old 03-06-2016, 03:50 PM   #10
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Here is one, no charge for looking
2008┬*Tiffin┬*Phaeton 36QSH w/4 Slides┬*listed on RVOnline.com -RVs for Sale
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Old 03-06-2016, 04:15 PM   #11
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Personally I would look at units with 400hp and up to pull the mountains in the west but obviously that varies by how much your rig weighs. The engine break is essential but a 3 stage is pretty rare. I just went down a curvy 16% grade which is ridiculous but the engine brake handled it. Adding solar is not the expense it use to be just make sure you have room for any extra batteries. Lots of rigs in your price range 8-10 years old but I would look for RVs with service records...


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Old 03-06-2016, 04:47 PM   #12
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You might want to frequent the Kijiji site as it is so heavily used in Canada for used vehicles. Living in Alberta and with 100,000 unemployed from the oil patch there are some pretty good bargains flying around. Buying in Canada saves that 30% exchange as well. I bought my last one two provinces away and did a lot of discussions on the phone. When I arrived it was everything advertised, so don't be shy. Road trip for 12 hour drive can be educational as well.
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