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Old 11-16-2010, 02:27 PM   #1
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Which 32' to 36' gas motor home??

I am in the market for a used class mA motorhome 2005 or older and with all of the manufactures and models I am overwhelmed! I am only going to carry a motorcycle behind it (no desire to tow a car), and would like slide out(s), good kitchen counter space, reasonable shower space (I'm 6'4" 220 lb. man), leather seats, 2 good size tv's placed well, and no horrible flower/ugly pattern material in seating/window treatments(neutral colors). I also want a reliable MH with reasonable maintenance costs and reasonble MPG. Does this MH exist and if so ,what is it. Thanks for your valued response. Rich
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Old 11-16-2010, 03:08 PM   #2
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First, . You've come to the right place for input.

2nd, yes, motorhomes in that date/size range are easily available. There are a few fitting your parameters in the Classifieds on iRV2. A great place to start.

Most late model motorhomes will have contemporary or classic decor. You won't be seeing the garrish flower patterns/colors from decades past. Beiges, taupes & greys seem to be prevalent as those are very neutral & can pair with any color scheme.

With your size, if I may comment, you might look for a split bath (shower on one side, toilet/sink on the other, usually in an enclosed room) rather than a fully enclosed/side hall bath. In my experience, side hall baths can be cramped because you have the shower, toilet & sink all together & sometimes a linen closet is crammed in there too, all in about a 5 or 6ft width so you still have a 2ft aisleway outside. With a split bath, even when you close it off with the doors, you've got the full use of the 8ft width of your motorhome for your bathroom area.

Figure out a floorplan you like. Make friends with a dealer (or dealers) in your area, go look at what they have in stock & hang out in the units for the afternoon so you get a feel for the different floorplans. You'll soon eliminate floorplans you don't like.

As for mfr, they've all got their pro's & con's. We really like our Bounder (Fleetwood) - it's a great motorhome at a reasonable price. I know members with Winnebagos, Tiffins & Newmars & those members are happy with their units. If you consider a unit on a Workhorse chassis, please read the threads about the brake recalls in the Workhorse Forum so you will be aware of this issue. Also, read the Norcold/Dometic threads in the RV Systems & Appliances Forum to be aware of recalls underway for refridgerators.

Don't let the selections overwhelm you. Shopping for a motorhome is fun. With a used unit, you'll not take the depreciation hit &, hopefully, the previous owner worked out most of the bugs. Make a list of must haves, nice to haves & can take it or leave its & head out to see what you can find.

If you find ones you like, post your choices & our members will be glad to give you their opinions...good or bad.

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Old 11-16-2010, 04:31 PM   #3
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I would recommend a Winnebago Adventurer, Itasca Suncruiser in any size range. They are robust and if you find one well cared-for will last many years. Believe me- I've had a road accident in one and it held up beyond expectations.

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Old 11-16-2010, 07:22 PM   #4
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I would also recommend the Adventurer. The Workhorse brake recall is pretty much a non issue now that the recall has started, and won't stop till all the units out there are taken care of. We love ours and it is a solid motorhome! Keep us posted on your journey. Good luck and enjoy the hunt!
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Old 11-16-2010, 08:55 PM   #5
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Rich:

We spent a lot of time looking for a Class A and decided that finding a private sale has its advantages.

We spotted a deal in our local paper, went out to take a look and bought our signature rig from the original owners. They'd had to give up RVing for medical reasons.

We got it in mid July and have taken four trips before putting it away. We're quite happy with it. There were a few niggles, which I've taken care of, that reflect a difference in our lifestyle compared to the seller's. There were also a couple of self-inflicted injuries that cost a few bucks.

It's a two slide configuration, a living room slide that includes the sofa-bed and the dinette and a smaller one in the bedroom that makes the queen bed a transverse-oriented walk-around. For DW and me (and two Labradors) it's a good configuration. The kitchen counter is a bit skinny because the entry door is set back to allow a barrel chair behind the front passenger seat. I'd have preferred the barrel chair not to be there, the door moved forward and extra counter space alongside the sink.

Sure it rides like a truck. Damnit it IS a truck and an 11-tonner at that, so we can live with it.

There are lots of 30 - 32-foot front-engined gassers out there at reasonable prices, particularly if you run across the kind of seller we found. Be ready to negotate a price that lets your budget put a new set of tires on, and look at the condition of the slide toppers. We overlooked that and the living room topper was rotted through because the rig had been parked with that side facing south and the slide deployed. We put $800, that we hand't planned for, into new toppers and a seal fix.

Overall, though, we're quite happy with our purchase and expect many years of use, given the usual maintenance issues. As a mechanical engineer with extensive experience of keeping weird European cars running, I think I can handle most of the problems Ford's F53 can throw at us.

During my searching, I quickly discounted Chevy/Workhorse because they hadn't figured out the brake caliper issue. I also had philosophical problems with the design of their "Autopark" parking brake system and the narrow-track front end on the earlier chassis. I much prefer the F53.

There will be contrasting opinions, I'm sure, particularly as Workhorse and Bosch have figured out a service bulletin on the wheel brakes. I still don't like the failure modes of Autopark.
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Old 11-17-2010, 05:29 PM   #6
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Frank, Thanks for the sound technical advice and you are not alone in preferring the Fords!!!! Rich
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Old 11-17-2010, 05:33 PM   #7
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Thanks for the good advice an insight into what I should be looking for and why! I appreciate everyone taking the time to help!! Rich
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Old 11-17-2010, 06:07 PM   #8
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Hi SEAK100,
Welcome to iRV2. There is a coach being advertised on iRV2 that fits your needs. Go to Newmar Mountain Aire 2004 Gas Coach - RV & Motorhome Classifieds and take a look. These folks are in the same RV club I am in. I am familiar with the coach and owners. My suggestion comes from knowing the coach has been maintained by professionals according to the manufacturers maintenance schedule. It is being sold due to poor health of the owners.
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Old 11-18-2010, 03:54 PM   #9
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You mentioned that you were interested in carrying a motorcycle on the back of your RV. I have an 1800 Goldwing and have done extensive research regarding carrying a m/c in this weight category on the back of any motorhome. If your bike is this weight, then the only m/h with a chassis strong enough would be a diesel. Gas m/h's are not built to carry a heavy load that far aft of the rear axle. A small m/c or scooter (total weight of bike + rack = 500 lbs.) would be OK. I have a W24 workhorse chassis, 35' Itasca and considered mounting a bike on the back, but a Harley or Goldwing is just too heavy!

By the way, the Workhorse brake recall does not apply to the W24 chassis.
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Old 11-18-2010, 03:57 PM   #10
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I certainly don't want to start a Ford vs. Chevy debate, but I will throw my reasons in the ring on why I chose the Workhorse platform. Workhorse chassis are custom built for RV use and designed with the engine sitting lower in the frame, which results in a much lower (practically nonexistent) doghouse. The cab area is close to that of a pusher, in fact I had to start mine up for one person because he didn't believe it had an engine up front! The Ford chassis by contrast is the same as used in gas trucks and as a result has quite a large doghouse to climb over to try to get to the front seats. I don't really have a problem with the V-10 engine, although the pre 2003 models had problems with spark plugs popping out, but the Ford tranny is not nearly as smooth as the Allison in the WH. Also the Allison is a 5-speed as opposed to a 4-speed in the Ford. I see they changed over to a 5 in the new models. Ford makes a fine product, but after driving both, I prefer the Workhorse. It's just too bad they handled the brake recall so poorly and haven't pushed hard enough to stay competitive in the current market!
Rod
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Old 11-18-2010, 06:51 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Knightly View Post
You mentioned that you were interested in carrying a motorcycle on the back of your RV. I have an 1800 Goldwing and have done extensive research regarding carrying a m/c in this weight category on the back of any motorhome. If your bike is this weight, then the only m/h with a chassis strong enough would be a diesel. Gas m/h's are not built to carry a heavy load that far aft of the rear axle. A small m/c or scooter (total weight of bike + rack = 500 lbs.) would be OK. I have a W24 workhorse chassis, 35' Itasca and considered mounting a bike on the back, but a Harley or Goldwing is just too heavy!
Good point. What make/model of motorcycle do you have, SEAK100?

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Old 11-18-2010, 07:18 PM   #12
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Not all Diesel MH can haul a bike on the rear either.
Mine used for full time is near the rear GAWR limit.
The left rear is 130 lb over. Right 330 lb under.
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Old 11-18-2010, 08:01 PM   #13
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Which 32' to 36' gas motor home??

Thanks for all the well thought out and great responses to my question. As in most aspects of our lives, we take unexpected turns!!! We ended up buying a 2002 Coachman Sportcoach deisel pusher with a 330 HP Cummins engine. It only had 44K miles and was the LE model so it is super inside and out compared to what I had been looking at. Granted it cost quite a bit more but depending on how much we use it, we can get years of great service out of in in a luxurious way.
I tried responding to all the kind souls that gave me input but I seem quite confused as to how to do that. So take this post as a gesture of my gratitude to those that took the time to respond! Thanks, Rich
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Old 11-18-2010, 08:48 PM   #14
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Read, research and make sure to look at a lot of motorhomes.. Decide on what is important in a floorplan, milage, condition and price.

We looked at over a dozen in person and an lot more on the internet.
Having owned travel trailers in the past we kind of know what to look for. You can see if a person has taken care of.

Personally we are picking up our 2004 Winnebago Adventurer 33V this Monday (11/22). Like the above poster had said, new tire are a must. I made sure to have six new Michelins installed on ours before delivery.

Read the posts here on this message board and ask questions. Everyone here as been great with offering their opinions.

Good luck and message me if you have any questions..
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