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Old 12-13-2018, 07:03 AM   #29
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You need to start looking at used units and not fixate on one particular brand or layout. Used RVs are not like used cars. You can eliminate the vase majority of units without even going inside. Look hard and find that cherry 10 year old camper that you can buy for a song. They are out there. Give the lifestyle a shot and see what you really want or need. If you buy right you can sell without a loss. We've been successful with this strategy over 20 times. Good luck!
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Old 12-13-2018, 07:07 AM   #30
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We have ended up in our Vilano 365RL since July. Older, less active and hate going to laundrymat. Still have to for comforter since temps are colder but sheets, clothes get washed in our stacked Whirlpool W/D. The combo, all in one units don't work well and take to long.

Two former 5th wheels were 26 and 29 ft something inches. Both fine for long weekends and summer vacations to Florida theme parks, etc. for myself, wife, teen son. We didn't need all the extra weight and insulation of a 4 seasons camper. Both were Newmar products no longer made. Now we do and glad to have it with snow and temps in the upper teens. We cannot just say to heck with this and go to our sticks and bricks. It now has a roof but no sheetrock.
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Old 12-13-2018, 11:47 AM   #31
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Buying Grand Design used takes some inside knowledge. They had startup pains from dissolving furniture to dropping tanks that relied on the ledges of the I-beams of the frame to hold them up (does not work well in summer heat with a plastic bladder), as well as several frame redesigns. Particularly on the Reflection I would have the seller drop the chloroplast in the front and see if anything other than a fabric strap supports the holding tanks. If fabric only request metal added or pass on the unit.

The shame of it all is most of the info has been deleted from the GD owners forum. If you know what to look for and what to avoid they can be great units.
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Old 01-11-2019, 12:14 PM   #32
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After all the feedback from you guys, we have decided to go up to 36 feet.
Thank you guys
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Old 01-11-2019, 08:23 PM   #33
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my highly biased opinion about the Arctic Fox 27 5L

I've been a full timer for the last four years, I boondock about 95% of the time and I love it. I live in a Northwood Arctic Fox 27 5L that I bought new in 2013. I looked at others but in its size and price range I couldn't find another one built as well is the Arctic Fox. Yes their a little heavy, mine weighs about 10,500 pounds empty and about 13,000 going down the road with everything I own in it. But that extra weight does not come from fancy furnishings and pretty doodads it comes from a massive frame, good insulation, double pane windows, solid wood cabinets, and real plywood instead of particleboard.

The Arctic Fox 27 5L is designed as a four season live aboard fifth wheel, some trailers aren't but you won't find that out until you start having problems with condensation.

I outfitted the Arctic Fox with six 140 W solar panels and four lithium iron batteries that give me 400 amps to use. I don't own a generator and I've never needed one. Since I live in my Arctic Fox I do not "rough it"nor do I have the desire to do so. The only thing I can't use while boondocking is my air conditioner and my toaster oven. Other than that I live a perfectly normal life.

I pull my Arctic Fox with a GMC three-quarter ton four-wheel-drive short bed pickup. I spent my summers in Colorado often in the mountains and in the five years that I've been towing the Arctic Fox up and down the Rockies I've never had any problems with the truck or the Arctic Fox.

If you would like to know more about living full-time and boondocking in an Arctic Fox check out my blog theboondork.com and yes there is a lot of drivel in there about my life but if you search you'll find a lot about living with solar, boondocking and finding places to stay where it's warm in the winter and cool in the summer.

Tom
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Old 01-12-2019, 08:19 PM   #34
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I am late to the party but it looks like you have not bought yet. A good thing. Easy to get pressured into buying a mistake.

Looking back, at your budget you should be able to get a lightly used almost new good quality unit. Good on you for setting parameters. Did not think you would stay under 30' but 36' is getting into BIG territory. Stick to that freshwater tank minimum size. You will be glad you did. Less than 60gal does not go very far if you are dry camping at a festival or something.

We started trying to stay under 32'. Did not work out that way. Our Alpenlite is 34 by model #. Actually 35'10" pin to bumper. We set freshwater minimum at 80gal. That cut out a whole bunch from the herd instantly. We would consider nothing less than what was considered a better than average builder. Next in priority line was the large usable galley. The DW is a foodie so working space is a must especially on the multi month trips.

With parameters set, the hunt was on. We were down to 4 possible models in no time. 2 Alpenlites, a Mobile Suite 32 TK3 & a Carriage 33CK3. All have 100gal freshwater. All have either an island galley or a 'J' shaped galley.

Next came the online search. Did not matter where it was located for the right one. Took awhile but our lightly used 6 month old Alpenlite 34RLR was found more than 3000 miles & a full day/3 flights worth to go see & buy from a private seller. Bought the truck too.

He had bought a mistake & wanted out in the worst way. With no prior RV experience he had bought new a $80K 5er & a dually with near all of the options possible. 6 months in & they decided the RV lifestyle was not for them.

12 years & over 200,000 miles later we have not seen a 5er we like better. Research & waiting for what you want to come along pays off.
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Old 01-14-2019, 02:58 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theboondork View Post
I've been a full timer for the last four years, I boondock about 95% of the time and I love it. I live in a Northwood Arctic Fox 27 5L that I bought new in 2013. I looked at others but in its size and price range I couldn't find another one built as well is the Arctic Fox. Yes their a little heavy, mine weighs about 10,500 pounds empty and about 13,000 going down the road with everything I own in it. But that extra weight does not come from fancy furnishings and pretty doodads it comes from a massive frame, good insulation, double pane windows, solid wood cabinets, and real plywood instead of particleboard.

The Arctic Fox 27 5L is designed as a four season live aboard fifth wheel, some trailers aren't but you won't find that out until you start having problems with condensation.

I outfitted the Arctic Fox with six 140 W solar panels and four lithium iron batteries that give me 400 amps to use. I don't own a generator and I've never needed one. Since I live in my Arctic Fox I do not "rough it"nor do I have the desire to do so. The only thing I can't use while boondocking is my air conditioner and my toaster oven. Other than that I live a perfectly normal life.

I pull my Arctic Fox with a GMC three-quarter ton four-wheel-drive short bed pickup. I spent my summers in Colorado often in the mountains and in the five years that I've been towing the Arctic Fox up and down the Rockies I've never had any problems with the truck or the Arctic Fox.

If you would like to know more about living full-time and boondocking in an Arctic Fox check out my blog theboondork.com and yes there is a lot of drivel in there about my life but if you search you'll find a lot about living with solar, boondocking and finding places to stay where it's warm in the winter and cool in the summer.

Tom
Arctic fox is a beast. It was on my short list. Good choice.
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Old 01-14-2019, 03:02 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Triangle Drifter View Post
I am late to the party but it looks like you have not bought yet. A good thing. Easy to get pressured into buying a mistake.

Looking back, at your budget you should be able to get a lightly used almost new good quality unit. Good on you for setting parameters. Did not think you would stay under 30' but 36' is getting into BIG territory. Stick to that freshwater tank minimum size. You will be glad you did. Less than 60gal does not go very far if you are dry camping at a festival or something.

We started trying to stay under 32'. Did not work out that way. Our Alpenlite is 34 by model #. Actually 35'10" pin to bumper. We set freshwater minimum at 80gal. That cut out a whole bunch from the herd instantly. We would consider nothing less than what was considered a better than average builder. Next in priority line was the large usable galley. The DW is a foodie so working space is a must especially on the multi month trips.

With parameters set, the hunt was on. We were down to 4 possible models in no time. 2 Alpenlites, a Mobile Suite 32 TK3 & a Carriage 33CK3. All have 100gal freshwater. All have either an island galley or a 'J' shaped galley.

Next came the online search. Did not matter where it was located for the right one. Took awhile but our lightly used 6 month old Alpenlite 34RLR was found more than 3000 miles & a full day/3 flights worth to go see & buy from a private seller. Bought the truck too.

He had bought a mistake & wanted out in the worst way. With no prior RV experience he had bought new a $80K 5er & a dually with near all of the options possible. 6 months in & they decided the RV lifestyle was not for them.

12 years & over 200,000 miles later we have not seen a 5er we like better. Research & waiting for what you want to come along pays off.
Thank you for your response.
We got nothing but time. I believe we will find something good.
Wife got me thinking about Toy haulers. She saw pictures of people using the ramp as a patio and fell in love with it. We are not planning on bringing any toys with us but if we find a nice toy hauler around 36ft we can decorate the garage as an extra room.
I am interested in Grand Design Momentum these days. They have one layout which is 36ft and I really like it.
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