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Old 06-15-2011, 06:23 AM   #1
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Advice on my potential purchase

Hello everyone. I am brand new to the forum. The wife and I are contemplating purchase of a newer trailer to replace our '93 Prowler.
We have three young boys, so we are looking at bunkhouse models. New is not an option due to price. We have a short list of finalists with pros and cons. First up is a 2007 Wildcat 32Qbbs, private sale locally, they are asking $19000, and admit they have a little room to move, but not much as they still owe money on it from when they bought it new. With quad bunks, it is great for the kids, and they have an extended warranty through Star RV, a diamond package good until 2014, transferable for a $50 fee. One thing I'm not sure about is the Lippert frames. I have read a lot about issues with them, and notice most extended warranties exclude frames. A quick search of pin box issues yields some scary stories. Next candidate is a 2008 32QBBS Wildcat at a dealer for $22,000. Did not try and grind them on price yet. They are only offering a 30 day warranty. Also a Lippert frame. One plus is the '08 has a flat panel tv. I could care less about the dinky flat screen, but I like that this frees up storage space where the '07 has a cabinet to house a old CRT set. Lastly is my favorite, and my wife's #3 on this list, a 2007 KZ Durango 325BHX3, a different dealer, still only a 30 day warranty. One drawback is this unit only has 2 bunks, one queen, and one single above, but the floor-space is big in the bunk-room because it has a slider in there. This one also has a half bath in the bunkhouse, that makes the loss of the extra bunks a little easier to swallow. It also has a bedroom slider, and separate room for the hopper. I like how well sealed the bottom of this model appears because I hate mice! another private sale Wildcat we looked at was taken of the list after we found mouse poop everywhere in the living quarters. Back to the KZ, it has a nice tray style rear bumper for carrying stuff like a bicycle I guess. The pin box did not have Lippert on it, it had a different name I do not recall at the moment. The dealer wanted 22,700, but came down to $19,800. Comments, and suggestions welcome.
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Old 06-15-2011, 09:08 AM   #2
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Hi Steve, Rv shopping starts out fun, but can become frustrating. my wife and I had went in so many we were getting them all confused. One bit of advise I can give is to be patient and the deal will come around.
the 5er we found is a 2006 coachmen. 25' with a 14'slideout and triple rear bunkhouse. the people that owned it before us rarley used it. Perfectly new condition. Still had the "new trailer smell". after buying the hitch, adding a reciever to the back of the rv for my 4 wheeler trailer, I had it ready to roll for 14k. We have had it all over, the redwoods, down the coast, and we do alot of local camping every chance we get. No regrets on the purchase. with the market down, deals are out there. good luck in your search!
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Old 06-15-2011, 09:35 AM   #3
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Hi, my advice to you is to do your home work. I would start with a spread sheet and list all of the pros and cons. Than I would near it down to the best one. Also you need to keep MOMMA happy, if see is not happy than no one is.
I would also consider how much weight can your truck tow. Is this a 3/4 ton or 1 ton SRW/DRW. A 1 ton Drw will tow more and have extra stability with a heavy trailer.
Another item to do is look in to this site; http://www.jrconsumer.com/ .
They are a non-dealer/RV supported group that reviews Rv and provides feed back as to their durability.
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Old 06-23-2011, 09:17 PM   #4
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Thanks for all the replies. As of today, we have still not pulled the trigger. The KZ was my first choice, but it has been sold. The Wildcat we saw at a dealer is not an 2008 after all, turns out it is an 07, it aged a year but the price stayed the same, this and the tilted slide out make me less fond of it. But the wife likes the floorplan of the 32qbbs so I found a new 2008 we might try to get a deal on. Another contender is a 2009 Gulf Stream Canyon trail. They are asking 26K, but isn't this a higher end brand??? Than say Keystone, or Forest River? Would it be on par with the KZ, or a Crossroads?
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Old 06-23-2011, 09:44 PM   #5
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Owned a 91 Prowler for 15 years and was a great TT, traded it for a Gulf Stream Conquest TT that was a pile of junk, now maybe it was just one of those lemons but you won't get me near another Gulf Stream. Currently own a Keystone Montana which has a Lippert Frame and no problems and we love the unit. Have put just over 10000 miles on it in a year and a half. Lived in it for 3 months early this year and plan to spend 6 months in it this winter. You have to find a floor plan that works for your family and can be towed safely with your TV.
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Old 06-24-2011, 07:48 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mhs4771 View Post
Owned a 91 Prowler for 15 years and was a great TT, traded it for a Gulf Stream Conquest TT that was a pile of junk, now maybe it was just one of those lemons but you won't get me near another Gulf Stream.

You have to find a floor plan that works for your family and can be towed safely with your TV.
I'm guessing the Gulf stream was about a 2006? My TV is a '97 Dodge 1 ton, DRW, Diesel, with a Reese hitch. Pulls my '93 Prowler okay, so I think I can tow most fifth wheels we are considering.

Thanks for the comments.
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Old 07-05-2011, 02:44 PM   #7
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It sounds like you are very educated on the different models you are looking at. My suggestion if price is a factor is try Craigslist in your area. You will be shocked at the great deals out there. Mind you, you have to be very careful with private sales and do the research and homework on the model you may find. I will give you an example of how great a place Craigslist can be. I found a 2000 Wilderness GL 30 5G. It is 32 feet long with two slides, in great shape and a second owner purchased it from the original buyer a year ago. The family could not end up affording to buy Diesel truck to pull it due to the economy and cut in pay. Their dream travel purchase ended up being a financial issue due to our bad economy. The unit I am speaking of at a dealer lists anywhere from $12,800 to $14,900 depending on the condition of the RV. The NADA value on mine was around $12,900. I offered the party $6500 cash and they were very happy to sell it due to the economic times. While my rig may not be the Cadillac of RV's, it will work well for me as a starter. Everything works great; all I did was lay down some new plank flooring and update the window treatments and replace the shower pan. So good buys are out there if you look for them. This is just a suggestion and I think you will get more bang for your buck doing a private sale with someone who has taken good care of their rig. Good luck and keep us posted on what you find.
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Old 07-05-2011, 05:17 PM   #8
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Yep, purchased right at the change over 2006-2007. Was registered as 2007. Gave us more room than our Prowler, but if you can't get warm with the furnace and an electric heater when the outside temp is in the low 50s/high 40s that's no fun. So we when even bigger to our present 5er.
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Old 07-06-2011, 06:30 AM   #9
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Craigslist deals

We are in a holding pattern on our purchase. We have decided to wait until the end of summer to see if any deals come up at dealers, or private parties looking to unload a trailer before winter. In the meantime, I check my local Craigslist almost daily, and check other less local ones weekly. In our area there are lots of 5'ers that have been listed for over a month, and not selling. Problem is the sellers owe more than they are willing to take for it. The Wildcat we looked at at the dealer sold, and the KZ sold. The '07 Wildcat we looked at right near us is still just sitting there, but they are not lowering the price from 18500, witch is what they lowered it to on 6/24. The first time I saw it was in April. I drive by it on my way home every day, and they do not even have a for sale sign on it. I just don't think they are motivated sellers. In the meantime, I think I'll put our Prowler up on Craigslist. Maybe if I unload it we will have more incentive to ramp up our purchase!
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Old 07-06-2011, 10:38 AM   #10
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Yes I think you are right. If you are seeing private sellers not budging on the price chances are it is financed and they need the cash. I lucked out and mine had already been paid off. I do hope you can find a great deal, and the year and model you are looking for. Keep us posted.
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Old 10-12-2011, 09:17 PM   #11
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Update on our fiver hunt

Well the end of summer arrived, and we still had not scored a fifth wheel deal we had hoped for. Now with Columbus day weekend over, we are back in the thick of it, but now we are considering biteing the bullet, and ponying up more green for a new model. We looked at some real dogs this summer. Mind you they were once nice trailers, but they just were not well taken care of, etc. Fell in love with a Cardinal LE bunkhouse floorplan, but the 2007 for $19000 we looked at had some scary issues. Yesterday I spent time on the phone lines, trying to shake out a deal. Found a lightly used KZ 355bh, 2010, 5 slider bunkhouse. Looked barely used. It was on consignment, and the ask was 49,995! had lots of options, and 5 slide toppers. Got them down to 30,000, but we were stretching to get to our final offer of 27,500. The wife did not like the decor anyways, and she convinced me we did not need a five slider. Still high off my dreams of the massive KZ, I found my next fantasy girl. An Open Range 4 slider. Found a dealer who would sell me a brand new 2012 for $36,000! Not bad for a luxury fiver like that. Again, wife did not like the color of the kitchen cabinets (two tone), and too rich for our blood anyways. Now we are getting down to our fairly realisitc short list, a few of these are probably still too high for us, but I'll try to shake out a deal:

Sandpiper 365SAQ
Sandpiper 355QBQ
Sandpiper 32QBBS

Sierra 365SAQ
Sierra 355QBQ
Sierra 32QBBS

Copper Canyon 324FWBHS

Wildcat 323QB

KZ 1500 Durango D305BH

These are all quad bunkroom models, or three bunks, on the ones with outside kitchens. Some have 1 and a half baths.

Anybody own one of these, or have strong opinions on the brand??

Thanks.
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Old 10-13-2011, 02:46 PM   #12
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We have an 07 KZ and have had very good luck with it. The company stands behind their product. From my results with my 5er I would suggest placing KZ on your short list. Maybe I got lucky with mine but so far the only thing to go wrong on mine was the butterfly switch for the water heater which I replaced myself for a total cost of about $4.00.
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Old 10-14-2011, 08:19 AM   #13
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The KZ made the short list. Here is the revised list, many of the ones dropped were not dropped because we did not like them, they were dropped becasue we could not get one within our budget, and we are done with shopping for used.

We did flirt with an awesome 2010 Used KZ D355BH. It was a massive 5 slider, with loads of upgrades. We were at 27,500, they were at 30,000. In the end my wife said it was too much trailer for us, and she doed not want a free standing dinette.

Another dream fiver I toyed with was a 4 slider Open Range. I was not familliar with these, but when I saw it I loved it. Again, new was too much money, and used is non existent in my area.

Back to the short list:

Sandpiper Select 32QBBS

Sierra 32QBBS

Wildcat 323QB

KZ 1500 Durango D305BH

We added:

Chaparral 330FBH

Laredo 321BH

We also looked at Montana Mountaineers, but could not get one below 35K, so we dropped it.
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Old 10-17-2011, 08:58 PM   #14
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Stevewatr, If you are still in the market you may want to look at a Forest River Cedar Creek Silverback 35QB. My wife and I purchased one new last year and love it. We have three children as well so a separate bunkhouse for the kids was mandatory. It has four slides, a bath and a half and quad bunks in the rear -might be what you are looking for.
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