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Old 09-14-2004, 06:42 AM   #1
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We went to the Harrisburg,PA RV show to look at truck campers. Been researching them for about a year now. We had a 30' class A that we sold a couple years ago, but we now want something smaller and think we'll like the freedom of a truck camper. We might be ordering one for next spring. We looked at Adventurer, Bigfoot(they only had a couple models), Arctic (silver) Fox, and Lance. No Alpenlites there. We were interested in the 981 before we went to the show, then we saw the new 1181. We liked it alot. We liked the big dry bathroom, the floor space, rear kitchen, headroom in bed area. It also has a pass thru outside storage area, forward of the generator on one side and utility bay on the other side. Dry weight of 3690 lbs. according to the brochure. Many features are standard now on the Max's, probably why it starts at a higher weight. I got a price of $28,200 with every option except rear camera and solar panel, including happijacs installed. I have pictures of it on webshots. Also got a price for the 1150 Silver Fox with the same options, and was about $1,500 less. We liked the fit and finish, floorplan, and many other things on the Lance better, but that's our opinion. We are also leaning towards a Lance because of dealers in our area. Nothing else close to us. The Lance rep said they want to have 2 more Max models. Maybe a side door, and also a short box model. I'm not a member of the Lance Owners of America group yet. If someone here is, you can post this there also.
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Old 09-14-2004, 06:42 AM   #2
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We went to the Harrisburg,PA RV show to look at truck campers. Been researching them for about a year now. We had a 30' class A that we sold a couple years ago, but we now want something smaller and think we'll like the freedom of a truck camper. We might be ordering one for next spring. We looked at Adventurer, Bigfoot(they only had a couple models), Arctic (silver) Fox, and Lance. No Alpenlites there. We were interested in the 981 before we went to the show, then we saw the new 1181. We liked it alot. We liked the big dry bathroom, the floor space, rear kitchen, headroom in bed area. It also has a pass thru outside storage area, forward of the generator on one side and utility bay on the other side. Dry weight of 3690 lbs. according to the brochure. Many features are standard now on the Max's, probably why it starts at a higher weight. I got a price of $28,200 with every option except rear camera and solar panel, including happijacs installed. I have pictures of it on webshots. Also got a price for the 1150 Silver Fox with the same options, and was about $1,500 less. We liked the fit and finish, floorplan, and many other things on the Lance better, but that's our opinion. We are also leaning towards a Lance because of dealers in our area. Nothing else close to us. The Lance rep said they want to have 2 more Max models. Maybe a side door, and also a short box model. I'm not a member of the Lance Owners of America group yet. If someone here is, you can post this there also.
http://community.webshots.com/user/favarcat
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Old 09-14-2004, 04:35 PM   #3
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Well, first of all.....Welcome to the site!
Lots of neat folks here and a ton of experience!

About the max. It looks like Lance is getting really ambitious with a $30K camper. Considering that the only way to haul this thing arund is a F550 Super Cruzer! That weight is WAY over the capacity of the Ford F350. Of course Lance will tell you that any one ton can safely handle the weight easliy. That is their job to sell campers!
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Old 09-15-2004, 05:07 AM   #4
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Thanks for the welcome. We really like the Lance Max 1181, but we don't want to order an F450. We are trading our Dodge 2500 for a 3500 dually. What is the dry weight of a camper we should be looking at? The Max 981 is listed at 3240lbs. The only thing we wish it had was a dry bath, but every camper with a slide and dry bath gets very heavy. But at least the truck should be able to handle the 981 alright? We are considering Lance more than other makes because of dealers closer to us and we also like them.
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Old 09-15-2004, 05:16 PM   #5
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I think you will be pleasantly suprised at the handling with the 3500 dually. I love mine. I towed a 32 foot 5th wheel for 4 years and now I have a Lance 1130. What a huge difference! I am no longer 53 feet long! I can actually drive to a local restaurant before hitting the campground for the night.
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Old 09-16-2004, 03:41 AM   #6
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We haul a '03 Lance 1121(dry bath and slide-out) which is heavy and our '03 Dodge 3500 dually does an excellent job. In fact, it does a better job than any truck we've owned so far. We've owned four Lance campers over the last 20 years. Three of the four Lances have been over 11' campers with dry baths.

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Old 09-16-2004, 04:15 AM   #7
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Thanks for all the replys. We would like a dry bath, but we will probably order the 981 Max instead of the 1181. My wife loves the space in the kitchen and is willing to give up some space in the bath for it. The Max 1181 has both, but I don't want to be overloaded and not handle well. It will defeat our purpose of making things easier. We also like the idea of not being so long. We were also 50'+ long with our 30' MH towing a Jeep. We looked at the Arctic Foxs, but thought the fit n finish was much nicer with the Lance. We also like the idea of many more Lances on the road.
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Old 09-17-2004, 02:12 PM   #8
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Thanks for posting a link to the 1181 photos.
We really enjoy having a dry bath in the 1121 Lance. The overall length of our truck hauling the 11-1/2' camper is 26'. When we tow the Lund fishing boat behind we measure 50'.
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Old 09-19-2004, 02:24 AM   #9
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We are just less than 26' in length with our truck/camper combination also. We don't tow anything and don't remove the camper after we leave home. It's like a small Class C when we're traveling. We've never had a problem with our length anywhere we wanted to go. It's one of the reasons we enjoy traveling with the camper vs. the travel trailers or 5th wheels we've owned in the past. We've traveled and parked in many downtown areas without a problem.

If you have never had an RV with a wet bath, just be sure you can tolerate a wet bath model. We had a Lance camper(our first one) with a wet bath because we thought it would be OK before we bought it, but got tired of the hassle after using it a couple of years, and sold it.

The extra foot or two in living area makes a big difference if you are traveling for longer periods of time. There's more room to keep things picked up and put away and a bit more "breathing room" for two people. Been there, done that too.

We made the mistake of comprising too much on our first camper to accommodate the 3/4 ton truck we owned instead buying the longer camper and trading for a dually truck. However, that first truck and camper combination wasn't a disaster by any means... we traveled many miles and enjoyed our time in the shorter wet bath camper. In fact our 31' Airstream stayed parked most of the time we owned that first Lance! The longer campers with the dry baths are more "comfortable" for us and the extra length and weight isn't that noticeable.

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Old 09-19-2004, 03:42 PM   #10
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The reply by Bill was, very well put.

Think long and hard before you "settle".

I love the space my dry bath provides, we are always hanging wet rain gear over the tub, throw the laundry bag in and still have full use of the bathroom.

Just downsizing to a camper after being used to a Class A, is going to be an adjustment.

If you are going to use it for just ocassional weekends, you may be happy. But if you are going to use it for long periods, get what you really want.

Imagine your self "living" in it.
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Old 09-20-2004, 09:21 PM   #11
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Concerning the weight and the carrying capacity of trucks, the 2005 Fords have significantly increased weight carrying capacities over the prior models. Single rear wheel F350 are rating about what the Dual rear wheel models were rated at, and the 2005 dualies are another 1500 lbs carrying capacity above that. You might find that a new truck will carry your camper and be within the manufacturers ratings.
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Old 09-27-2004, 05:21 AM   #12
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Instead of ordering a new '05 Dodge DRW quad,4x4, Cummins, we found a used '01 F350 DRW Supercab 4x2 V-10. The Ford only has 24,000 miles on it and only cost us $18,000 instead of paying $38,000 for a new diesel. The payload for the Ford is 5,100 lbs. with this configuration. We have about 1700 lbs. more payload than a crewcab, drw, 4x4, diesel set-up. So now we are leaning towards the Max-1181 with the nice big dry bath. We have never had a 2wd truck before, but we aren't going out west yet and we're hoping with the weight on the back we should have plenty of traction. How do you 2wd owners like your trucks?
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Old 09-27-2004, 05:28 PM   #13
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I am well pleased with my 2wd truck. I test drove it in snow and ice without the camper and it did better than I expected. With the weight of the camper in the back it did even better. As long as you keep it on the road, I don't think there would be any problem. I like that the 2wd sits lower to the ground than the 4wd trucks. It is easier to climb into the camper and truck cab and there are less moving parts on the front end to wear out on 2wd trucks.
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Old 09-28-2004, 03:54 AM   #14
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Thanks Lance a Lot. We picked the F350 truck up last night and it drove great. It actually rides better than the Dodge 2500 we just sold. Maybe because of it being 2wd and the longer wheelbase. It has the camper certification paper in the truck, but it includes 150lbs./person at each available seat. Our payload will be 5,000 lbs. with the options on this truck. Pretty sure we'll be ordering the Max 1181 now.We like the 1121 also and it was always our favorite Lance. My wife likes the rear kitchen in the 1181 and a couple other things. I know we would be happy with either model.
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