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Old 07-21-2016, 09:36 PM   #1
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Alternatives???

Wife and I are considering a truck camper. We have a Ford F350 dually for a truck and are looking to travel extensively. We like a truck rather than a small bumper pull because we want to be able to pull our pontoon boat behind the truck/camper. We live in Fort Worth and have one dealer in DFW (Lance). Driving to Round Rock Saturday to see a much larger truck camper dealer. A few questions.

Are there any manufacturers we should avoid?

Should we avoid buying a brand that doesn't have a dealer local to us for service?

We're hoping to spend around $20-25,000. We prefer new, but know we can get more for our money if we are willing to take the risk of buying used. Thoughts?
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Old 07-21-2016, 11:16 PM   #2
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Good luck, try to buy from a dealer that is in your area or within a days ride, because if you need warranty service you need to go to your original dealer cause the others are going to deny you or at best put you at the end of a long list and rip you off. I like Lance , but there are other good mfgs. Just do your homework, compare and ask lots of questions. Go to LOA and find the pre purchase check off list and asks questions.
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Old 07-22-2016, 05:25 AM   #3
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Thanks Joe. LOA?
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Old 07-22-2016, 05:32 AM   #4
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Also, you suggested buying local. If I buy a Lance from a dealer in Austin and get it serviced at a Lance dealer locally, could I still have problems?

Do Lance dealers service brands other than Lance? Is that when I'm more likely to have problems?
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Old 07-22-2016, 05:48 AM   #5
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I'm just passing on to you some info that I have seen discussed over the years on LOA { http://lanceowners.hoop.la } Good luck on your shopping.
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Old 07-22-2016, 06:02 AM   #6
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Understand that Truck campers are not economy type travel, me, I wanted the TC so that when I travel, I have my own bed and bath, and with the TC, I can take my TOAD along for side trips and shopping. You are going to spend as much on a TC as a Trailer, it just depends on how you like to travel. Problems happen.
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Old 07-22-2016, 05:16 PM   #7
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I have never had a problem getting my campers fixed under warranty from a non dealer establishment.
I simply get the repair place to contact the manufacturer and get authorized to make the repair.
If the State you live in doesn't license campers, such as Calif. I would purchase in a no or low tax State.
I saved $4000 in sales tax my buying in Oregon vrs. Calif.
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Old 07-25-2016, 05:39 AM   #8
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Lance is not a bad camper, but are not the high point either. Lance is sort of the Chevy of TC's. One brand that I avoid is S&S. I have never seen one without water damage, although I am sure there has to be a few that have not leaked, or at least are stored indoors when not in use. Having a shelter to store your TC is the best investment that one can make. I own a Lance 1010 and like it a lot. Stay away from older Lance units with slideouts. The early models built around 2000-2003 had structural weakness and will almost always sag and come apart. Most RV's leak a little, and most will have hidden water damage if the skin is removed. Keeping a unit out of the weather when not in use minimizes the amount of water the unit is exposed to. How do I know this? I worked in the industry as a service tech for several years while attending nursing school. I have pulled brand new units in to replace damaged siding and almost always find water inside. Once I asked the CEO of the company I worked for why even dry units leak a little. "planned obsolescence." If money were no object, my pick would be a Northern Lite or a Bigfoot. Both have models that are constructed like a boat hull with one seam along the sides. Still there are many units out there that will provide years of enjoyment. Care and maintenance is the key to ownership of any unit.
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Old 07-25-2016, 10:46 PM   #9
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Thanks gcsprayjr! Excellent feedback. Is S&S an acronym for something or is that the brand name?
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Old 07-26-2016, 05:40 AM   #10
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Just stepping into the TC community but the wife and I decided on a Arctic Fox 1140. It seemed to fit our needs and plans. I am traveling a little overweight but only a a couple of hundred pounds if I am full of water, propane gas and diesel. We have a 2016 Chevy Silverado 3500 dually with the Duramax diesel engine. Just exercise due dilkigence, look around a lot and come to a decision.
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Old 07-27-2016, 08:37 PM   #11
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http://www.truckcampermagazine.com/n...-truck-camper/

The URL above has a pretty good article on things to consider when looking for a truck camper.
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Old 07-28-2016, 04:19 PM   #12
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If you are towing a boat,a TC is about the only way to go. You will find a few things to buy besides the unit, like suspension up grades and tie downs. The camper needs things like pot&pans,dishes, etc.
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Old 07-29-2016, 12:23 PM   #13
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CampLite VS Lance

From all our investigation we seem to be narrowing our search to Lance or CampLite. Both have aluminum frames, similar price range, both seem to have good reputations, etc.

Any owners out there that would be willing to describe their experience with these two brands?

We've already gotten some feedback on Lance, so I'm especially interested to hear from CampLite owners.
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Old 08-03-2016, 12:42 PM   #14
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Lance ( all of them ) have had water intrusion problems . On the newer ones it has to do with the corner bonding system.
Aluminum frames are no exception. Delamination problems abound.
If you want a trouble free ( or as near as possible ) camper , look at Bigfoot or Northern light all fiberglass units.
Used they should be within your price range.
Be patient . This is a tough time of year to buy a TC.
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