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Old 02-01-2016, 11:19 AM   #15
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-There's never enough counter space, live with it.
-We don't like cheap, look for quality.
-Size: shorter means less living and storage space. We have a 38' that's a bit too long in some CGs where a 36' would fit.
-Insulation: get the best you can find. We've used two bottles of propane in 2-3 nites in 30 degree weather. Several mfgrs. supply rigs with insulated under bellies and holding tank heating.
-Electrical: you definetely want 50 amps. Solar is often prewired. FWs generally have plenty of space for golf cart batteries, but weight limitations have to be considered, especially if you add an installed genset up front. You might want to consider stand-alone Honda gensets.
-Carrying Capacity: see Size.
-Windows: Comes down to personal preference. We don't like huge or too many windows.
-Leveling System: Don't have it, but will on the FW we just ordered.
-Hitches: No opinion.
-Doorways: some are wider than others, and we like wider.
-Slides: we have 3 and are going to 6. One of the existing 3 has been jamming since we've owned it. Swintek has been problematic for some. We can access our fridge on the road, very important.
-Does your rig have a gas fireplace? I'm not aware of any but electric.

The rest of your questions are best answered by you after digging around in every FW floorplan out there. There will have to be some compromises.
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Old 02-01-2016, 12:04 PM   #16
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I/S has no springs, axles, shackles, shackle bolts to wear out and break. Ever looked at the force on the springs, shackles, etc in a hard turn? There is a ton of stress on them. I/S well worth it.
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Old 02-01-2016, 01:21 PM   #17
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Quote:
RussOnTheRoad wrote: Is there some reason you prefer two 12 volt batteries over two 6 volt batteries? The latter may be larger and heavier, but they may also be more ruggedly built, last longer and store more ampere hours. My memory is a little fuzzy here, but I seem to recall those things.
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Jim wrote: My battery compartment tends to fit two 12V batteries better and is less costly in price than 8 6V batteries.
Jim,

I have a question. It seems there may be either a typo or misunderstanding where you wrote about batteries. You said your battery box tends to fit two two 12 volt batteries which would be less costly than eight 6 volt batteries. This seems to imply that you would need eight 6 volt batteries as a substitute for two 12 volt batteries. That’s not true. Your two 12 volt batteries can, in theory, be replaced by two 6 volt batteries (if you are running a 12 volt system which is the usual). I say “in theory” because they would have to fit in your battery compartment and they tend to be taller than 12 volt batteries. I would have swapped my two 12 volt batteries for two 6 volt batteries but the 6 volt batteries were two tall for my battery compartment.

Yes, 6 volt batteries cost more than 12 volt, but I’ve heard they last longer and so in the long run actually cost less. They also store more electricity.
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Old 02-01-2016, 06:43 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by RussOnTheRoad View Post
Jim,

I have a question. It seems there may be either a typo or misunderstanding where you wrote about batteries. You said your battery box tends to fit two two 12 volt batteries which would be less costly than eight 6 volt batteries. This seems to imply that you would need eight 6 volt batteries as a substitute for two 12 volt batteries. That’s not true. Your two 12 volt batteries can, in theory, be replaced by two 6 volt batteries (if you are running a 12 volt system which is the usual). I say “in theory” because they would have to fit in your battery compartment and they tend to be taller than 12 volt batteries. I would have swapped my two 12 volt batteries for two 6 volt batteries but the 6 volt batteries were two tall for my battery compartment.

Yes, 6 volt batteries cost more than 12 volt, but I’ve heard they last longer and so in the long run actually cost less. They also store more electricity.
This is true; but most people who boondock go with 4-6V batteries for the extra capacity. I tend to like 12V marine deep cycle batteries and I would use only two 12V batteries in parallel for the extra capacity if I was too boondock.

But we do not, my DW likes the full-hook-up sites so we tend to stay in private parks and COE campgrounds with full hook-ups when we can find one.
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Old 02-02-2016, 09:03 PM   #19
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Please don't call me dummy, but what does I/S stand for?
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Old 02-02-2016, 09:16 PM   #20
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I/S = Independent Suspension MorRyde has a setup that uses rubber bushings instead of springs to allow for wheel movement--no axles. Each wheel is independent of each other. It is said to provide a much smoother ride than the normal springs/axles/equalizers provide. Dexter has a similar setup.
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Old 02-02-2016, 10:18 PM   #21
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Well you have to ask yourself how much you are going to use it. A $3000 suspension for wknds and 2 wk vacations is a waste of money. Go buy a couple of honda gens for 2 grand. Boondocking, l would get the RV reefer runs on elec or propane . The home type are nice but you gotta have juice and if that goes south your food goes with it.Get the leveling sys either hyd or elec it is definetly worth it. Also either a trail air or air ride fifth wheel(expensive) tires from the factory are usually crap and can cost you alot of heartache. Good Luck in your quest.
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Old 02-03-2016, 04:44 PM   #22
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Well we are full time so we look at things different than occasional weekenders. So take my comments in that light please. I/S is modern also. No axles, springs, shackles is so cool and low maintenance. Also on a new unit cost should not be high. Saving cost of axles, springs,etc and replacing with I/S
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Old 02-03-2016, 05:59 PM   #23
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I am thankful that I bought my Teton back in 2007, before the plant closed up. Most of your requirements for your rig are contained on the Teton Homes line. I was worried about the close up but my worries are unfounded. Every time I see something "new" for a 5th wheel, I already have that on my rig, even if it is a 2007. Only thing I would consider adding is the residential refer. We do not do boon docking too often but I think I can make a residential refer work for that (short time). There are still some left over Tetons available, and a few used ones for sale. Check them out.
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Old 02-03-2016, 07:32 PM   #24
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I am thankful that I bought my Teton back in 2007, before the plant closed up. Most of your requirements for your rig are contained on the Teton Homes line. I was worried about the close up but my worries are unfounded. Every time I see something "new" for a 5th wheel, I already have that on my rig, even if it is a 2007. Only thing I would consider adding is the residential refer. We do not do boon docking too often but I think I can make a residential refer work for that (short time). There are still some left over Tetons available, and a few used ones for sale. Check them out.
I had hoped this would be a thread about specific features and systems rather than broad generalizations expressing things such as brand favoritism. A thread for people to learn about specific features and characteristics of fifth wheels in order that they can decide what is important to them and then shop around for fifth wheels with those features. (This is not so much a thread about those features I have decided would be useful to me personally.) This way, the thread would have value to many readers who are wondering what features to look for in a fifth wheel. With that in mind if you would be so kind as to express those things, specifically, that you appreciate in your rig as well as those things you might wish were different I think your contribution to this thread could be best appreciated.

Thanks.
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Old 02-03-2016, 08:42 PM   #25
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Well, that clears it up--
I appreciate that my fiver keeps me warm and dry, and also cool when necessary.
You have asked a lot of people who all have different views, and there have been a lot of good options mentioned.
This entire forum is all about what you are asking-- just read every post (well, there are some threads not applicable) and you will have your answers.
Joe
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Old 02-04-2016, 12:28 AM   #26
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Well, that clears it up--
I appreciate that my fiver keeps me warm and dry, and also cool when necessary.
You have asked a lot of people who all have different views, and there have been a lot of good options mentioned.
This entire forum is all about what you are asking-- just read every post (well, there are some threads not applicable) and you will have your answers.
Joe
Thanks Joe!

I've already read every post. I'm sure you have too. How else could you know that reading every post would answer all questions. Ha ha. Seriously, reading every post is of course a silly notion, but having many important aspects of selecting a fifth wheel all in one thread, concentrated, could be very helpful, not only to me but many others, and having that concentration of ideas in one spot, a lot easier to deal with than having to spend days or weeks wandering through thousands of posts looking for the unknown. Don't you think? That's what I hope this thread will accomplish, and for that specifics would be most helpful.

You mentioned that you like that your rig keeps you warm and dry, and cool when necessary. Might it be more helpful if you mentioned specifically what it was about your rig that enabled satisfactory climate control? For example, do you know what the manufacturer claims as the R-Values for the insulation on your rig? Is your manufacturer known for insulating their rigs particularly well? Do you have a large rig? Does it take two air-conditioners to keep it cool? Do you have double pane windows and if so have you been able to determine that they make a substantive difference? Do you sometimes camp in very cold or very warm locations that test the limits of your heater or air conditioner? Have you found supplemental heating such as a ceramic or catalytic heater necessary or valuable? Do you have slides? Have you found your slides to be a source of drafts? Does the manufacturer of your rig employ a special kind of sealing methodology for your slides? If you have slides have you found some method to reduce any air leaks that may be associated with them? I am not asking you to answer all these questions. I am just trying to give examples of the kinds of specifics that will be helpful for people who are learning what to look for in an RV. Please feel free to add to the discussion or not as you see fit. Anything you can add that will point people toward specifics to look for, or avoid, would be most appreciated.
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Old 02-04-2016, 12:37 AM   #27
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Stay home
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Old 02-04-2016, 08:02 AM   #28
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Satisfactory climate control----thermostat.
Yes.
Yes.
Sort of.
Yes, sometimes.
Yes/no.
Yes.
Yes.
Yes.
No/maybe/depends on if you believe advertising.
Yes.
Sorry that I can't get as serious as you about these subjects--I believe only personal experience can answer your questions, and that is very subjective--thus the answers don't pertain to everyone's situation.
Joe
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