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Old 11-19-2013, 11:08 AM   #15
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“You will be spending a whole lot more time in the interior then driving it down the road.”
Very true, but if it rides like an old lumber wagon you will not like it!!! I do not think you can get a better ride then the S Series chassis. Granted I never drive a Newell coach either and I do not know there chassis. I just like them. Lol We have had no problems with our Sig. or past Executive with twisting or leveling.
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Old 11-19-2013, 11:09 AM   #16
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Contrary to what Steve O said, Country Coach built the DynOMax chassis, no A in it

The Dyna Max is an entirely different animal
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Old 11-19-2013, 11:21 AM   #17
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Steve did a good job listing the different chassis.

Once you move up into the B level to A level coaches, typically the chassis under them are going to take good care of you.

They will have different handling/ride characteristics. Some prefer the Cadillac floating softer ride chassis, and others will prefer the BMW better handling chassis. (I like the better handling chassis, for emergency maneuvering when needed. I place the CC's Dynomax closer to the Cadillac ride, and upgraded our suspension with Road Kings and Super Steer Motion Control Units and like the handling.)

IMO, 2nd'ing the earlier post. Pick interior first, chassis and all up mechanical 2nd. I add that this is in the B to A level of coaches, so by default you are in a solid build coach and with the better components on the chassis front. (Roadmaster, Freightliner and Spartan have entry level chassis for the coach manufactures to place under their entry level coaches. These will not be found under the B to A level coaches.) And if handling is important to you, most of these can have after market mods made to improve the handling level, if the coach/chassis you pick is not at the BMW side of the handling spectrum.

Have fun on your search,
Smitty
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Old 11-19-2013, 11:30 AM   #18
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i have a 40 ft. 97 bmc-bluebird,,,, tag axle and air ride with spartan chassis have had no problems with chassis easy to get parts for suspension etc. from Spartan.
mike
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Old 11-19-2013, 12:43 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AFChap View Post
Our 2003 Winnebago Ultimate has a semi-monocoque Spartan chassis that has been great since new. Rides and handles well with no add-ons to improve steering, stability, etc. Frankly, the chassis mfg'er would be down the list in my priorities. My first chassis related concern for a DP would be that it has a side radiator, and next that it is under a quality built coach from a builder with good customer service. Who built my chassis is considerably less impt to me than who built the house, and whether or not they overloaded the chassis.
X's2! We have the same coach, and I love it, but knowing what I know now, I'd have to say that the real deal breaker for me next time would be the floor plan.

Other things to consider; is there easy accessibility to the fridge, bathroom, bedroom drawers and closet, etc. with the slides in? How many will be traveling (just two, or a family)? Many longer coaches are really only designed for two people. How up to date is the media wiring (HDMI compatible or coax) and electronics for watching TV? There's lots of threads about the hassle and cost of replacing old TV's. What type of heating system; propane, electric, heat pump, diesel Aqua-Hot? Side or rear radiator (side is generally best)? Engine size (size makes a big difference in performance). What type of exhaust brake? Lots of other things to consider besides chassis manufacturer. It wasn't on my list at all when I was looking for a TSDP.
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Old 11-19-2013, 12:49 PM   #20
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We agree that floor plan is very important and interior is also , but my priority is safety while traveling on the road .

I would not want to travel knowing that the chassis is Weak due to stress from twisting.

I believe that the chassis is the superstructure of the unit , it could be the difference between a controlled accident or a non-controlled accident on reaction time.

Thanks For All The Advice,

James
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Old 11-19-2013, 02:52 PM   #21
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I have a 06 Tiffin FRED with Freightliner. Only problem I have had is ride seems to be a bit uneven due to leaf spring. Later models had air ride. Othe than that I love the little coach
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Old 11-19-2013, 09:30 PM   #22
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I jacked up my Foretravel by the frame next to the right front wheel intending to remove just the right front wheel, to my surprise the front
of the coach raised the same amount on both sides. No frame twist at all.
I also once had a front tire blow out at 65 mph and I was able to control it to a stop with little effort. Now there may have been a little luck involved, but this thing handles and drives real nice for a 1997 model. Foretravel builds there own proprietary chassic
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Old 11-20-2013, 12:18 AM   #23
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If you want to know which chassis to avoid, you might take the advice of the Colton Truck Terminal shop in Colton, CA. They work on all makes/models of motorhome. They are not a dealer, just a service garage and excellent, I might add. When we needed to make a change, I asked the service manager, "based on what you see come through the facility, what chassis should I consider, and what should I avoid. He immediately told me to avoid a MAGNUM chassis (many earlier Beavers and Safaris). They often are sold as having air brakes systems, but they are "hydraulic over air" systems which use a hydraulic system to activate the air brakes. The service manager told me that they are CONSTANTLY working on these units and it's not cheap. Poor design.
Most chassis manufacturers highlighted features: Monaco makes a fine chassis with an 8-bag air system.
Freight liner now has a unit that will turn sharp enough to turn a 40' DP around in a cul de sac without backing.
Spartan (I have owned 2) have excellent emergency avoidance characteristics and a smooth, controlled ride.
Proprietary manufacturers like Newell and Foretravel are wonderful coaches in every respect, but are in a price class by themselves...new 1.3-1.5 million; 13 year old units still bring $120-150K
I have been riding Spartans for 11 years and like re handling, reliability, and the available service.
There are coaches to avoid, not because of the chassis under them, but because the quality of what you find inside is suspect. I would not buy a Berkshire or Cross Country even if it was a smacking good deal. The interior will fall apart before you know it. We have found beautiful oak drawer fronts hiding plastic drawers which are attached with 18ga brads. These are not full-timer coaches, and shouldn't even be considered a good buy as an entry unit.
Monaco, Holiday Rambler (very close to Monaco with same available chassis), Country Coach, Newmar, Winnebago, Tiffin, and I'm forgetting a couple of others. These are reputable manufacturers. Goofs hunting.
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Old 11-20-2013, 12:21 AM   #24
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Oh, and by the way, if you can find one, and if you spend time in mountainous areas in your travels, get a unit with a two-stage Jake engine retarder. You may have to look for. 400HP or higher to find one. You'll NEVER regret it! Best option on my old Navigator.
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Old 11-20-2013, 07:01 AM   #25
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Thanks picantedj, for all your helpful information and thanks everyone that replied to this thread, I know more now.

Thanks,

James
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Old 11-20-2013, 08:11 AM   #26
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Been following along as well. Am looking to buy soon. Anyone have a CCC minimum fir fulltime? Do all the chassis recommended have enough, and what is considered enough? Any advice would be much appreciated.
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Old 11-20-2013, 10:09 AM   #27
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when i searched my rv at the time, i found the only chassis with independant front suspension was dinomax, by country coach from 2000 and onward. IFS makes very small turns, a big difference than not. so i bought one, and happy ever since.
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Old 11-26-2013, 06:11 PM   #28
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I have a 2003 40 ft Windsor PST with 3 slides, the Ralph Lauren package and 28000 miles that we are going to sell. Love the coach and it is in great shape, but the DW wants something smaller (25 to 29 ft.). Monaco made and makes a wonderful MH that is hard to beat.
Tony
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