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Old 04-07-2012, 05:58 PM   #15
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The perfect MH length is in the eye of the beholder! That's why they make about any length you want. Just remember that longer length is great for living in but is more Coach to drive down the road, park in camp stalls, store, etc. Also, the more slides you have the square feet space in the slides makes up for spare ft in length. Now if you want the max, get a 42' or 43' tag axle unit with 4 slides. We found our 38' with 3 slides to be all the floor space we ever wanted. If fact, we sold it and now own a Sprinter Based Winnebago ERA and think, at this point in our life, it's the perfect size!!!

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Old 04-07-2012, 06:34 PM   #16
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[QUOTE=jzick;1136951]Perfect means you would have to define what perfection is. The wisest choices are made by those choosing to fit their lifestyle. Things like King vs. Queen bed (sometimes available only in larger sizes) or an extra half bath or a dishwasher may be critical to some. Fitting into a dinky, tree lined state park site may be a critical consideration for others. Whether the journey or the stay time is most important could be extremely critical.


You hit the nail right on the head with this response.

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Old 04-07-2012, 06:57 PM   #17
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Our 38' is used almost exclusively in state parks. Can we fit in any site available? Heck no! Have we ever been shut out because of our length? Not yet....

I will add though, there WILL be a learning curve involved in how to handle even a 36' in tight quarters....
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Old 04-07-2012, 07:16 PM   #18
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Perfect is what perfect is. Our 4 slide 40 foot Monaco is without a doubt perfect. It has a real, separate (not walk thru) bathroom, with a shower big enough for normal size humans. We have not used a cam[ground bathroom since we got the knight.

Those who say no slides are just fine, I'm glad you are happy. We have seven feet of floor width with both front slides open, though we can operate just fine with just one, if we have to.

One thing to remember on length, the distance from the rear wheels to the bumper is pretty well fixed by the length of the drivetrain.
Front wheels to front bumper is the same.

So a shorter coaches length has to come out of the middle. costs basement storage, and also a shorter wheelbase / comparitively longer overhang tends to make things a bit bouncy.

The only thing more perfect than a 40 is a 42 or 45 with a tag axle, with a bath and a half and a residential fridge
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Old 04-07-2012, 07:28 PM   #19
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you also want to concider which park you want to stay in. state park are most of the time are cheaper than privately owned but some states allow 35 to 37 ft. but if you are going full time, remember one thing if mama is not happy nooooooo body is not happy......
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Old 04-07-2012, 07:35 PM   #20
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If it's anything like our boats we've had it's "two feet longer than what we now have".
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Old 04-07-2012, 07:42 PM   #21
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We went through a lot of this process ourselves recently. Coming from a 30' gas class A, I was really trending towards stay short -- 32-34' But over time we really started looking at the places we go and the things we've done and said "what couldn't we have done with, say a 40'?"

Certainly there were a few things. Taking the old Columbia River Gorge road instead of I-84 out from Portland... no, I would not do that in a 40 footer. And there have been a couple of other places where we just drove in without a second thought that I wouldn't do now, for sure. But overall, we found that a good 90% of what we do could be done with a 40' coach.

Now, if we'd found a shorter coach with all we wanted, that would have been great. But in the end, there are a lot more coaches to choose from the longer you go (up to 40') And we happened upon a floorplan we loved that's 39' long. Really, floorplan is the most important thing.

As a previous poster said, if mama's not happy, no one's happy.

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Old 04-07-2012, 07:46 PM   #22
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Save yourself a great deal of trouble. When Mama's happy.........
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Old 04-07-2012, 08:39 PM   #23
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The wife and I are happy with our 36' because it has 2 slides (one is full wall) For me its a plus for getting into tight spots and it still has a lot of room when set up. I do have friends that have 43's with 4 slides that think even a little more space would be better. Its really about what you need, if you're a serious RV'er you'll learn to handle your rig no matter what size it is.
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Old 04-07-2012, 09:24 PM   #24
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So my advice is to shop till you drop and don't get in a hurry.

We've had various motor homes over the past 20 years and are now shopping for another one. Our minimum requirements are at least 40' and two-three slides. Also, important to me is engine torque. We live out west where the grades are steep and the summer temps over 100 and I would like to be able to climb the mountains easily pulling a trailer/toad. My wife wants plenty of storage, a desk with chair, aqua hot, washer/dryer, and a big shower. We would prefer a residential refrigerator, but I think we can just replace the Norcold with a Sanyo R197.

We've learned something from every motor home we have looked at, so the longer and harder you shop the more likes/dislikes you will develop.

It's been my experience that the rumors of 40'+ not being allowed in parks are just that, rumors. Usually the only down side with a 40' coach is you don't have room to park your car directly in front of it. I've driven everything from 34' to 45' and I really think the 40'+ with a tag axle drives and handles better. Most 40' motor homes will turn as tight as a 36' because the tag lifts and it then pivots on the drive axle (the drive axle is placed farther forward to accomodate the tag).

Having said this, we saw some new 34-36' floor plans that were very nice. The manufacturers have really worked hard to improve the shorter floor plans in the last few years.

So my advice is to shop till you drop and don't get in a hurry. The right coach will come along. Don't be afraid to travel across the country for the right deal. The internet is your friend.
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Old 04-07-2012, 09:51 PM   #25
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Just got back from a state park with my 42, no problem at all. Over a third of the spaces were made for big rigs. As one said more rumors then facts on being able to find state national parks being able to accommodate longer rigs
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Old 04-07-2012, 10:00 PM   #26
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I appreciate everyones input. I agree the floor plan holds a lot of weight on how you will likke the coach. Especially the one the wife would be comfrotable with.

Thanks everyone for your thoughts..
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Old 04-08-2012, 11:05 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by Jack1234 View Post
How do slides take up length ?

We learned that the slide mechanisms have to be placed somewhere. At the time we were looking (and maybe still today) the driver side salon slide mechanism was placed in the galley cabinet and behind the driver seat. Each of those blocked out areas were about 10" wide and 24 inches deep. So each slide consumed about 20" of floor space length. Some slide mechanisms also take up basement space.

So with that one slide, we would have a shorter couch or galley counter or both and would lose storage space under the galley counter. Most coaches today do not have a very long or generous galley counter at 38/40'. We have both a long couch and a long galley counter at a true 38' on the driver side where we wanted it.

On some newer rigs, the galleys have pull out cabinets that extend the counter tops but add no galley storage space.

If you are not missing the space in your coach, then you have no worries.
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Old 04-08-2012, 11:15 AM   #28
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The longest you can afford and live with or in is the best length. We have had units from 25 to 40+ feet and no real issues with any of the length of the units. We got tired real fast of the shorter units but had to learn by experience.

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