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Old 10-18-2018, 02:39 PM   #1
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Full Time Living-Which brand? I know the specs I will need

Hello everyone,
I have been reading the forum for a long time and decided to register finally.
I read too many posts and you guys really know what you are talking.

So I have couple of limitations when I think about a 5th wheel.
It is just me, my wife and our 9 months old English Bulldog right now but who knows what life will bring in the future.

I have been doing my homework and researching for a long time. It is just the financials game after this.
I checked all my options and seems like 5th Wheel is the best way for us to go.
  • Our budget is up to $30-$35K.
  • We don't want a brand new unit. Something maybe up to 7 8 years old (newer is better of course). We can go older. The reason is we want to spend some time and modify and repair the interior( when I say we, it is actually my wife, she wants to change all old style RV stuff inside and maybe even paint the cabinets.)
  • We want something up to 32 feet. Nothing bigger. We want to be able to easily go in and out everywhere. So this also means I need something durable and strong.
  • We don't need washer and dryer.
  • Also when we feel like it, we want to be able to boondock up to a week. This is why we are looking for an older rig. I want to spend some money to modifications and add-ons like Solar and batteries. Something solar ready is always a plus but not a must.
  • For that we need big water tanks. Minimum 60 gallons fresh water.
  • Also we feel like we will always travel to warmer areas but I want the option to spend some time in cold weather. Insulation is a must and also heated plumbing system and tanks.
  • We need a living room with that fits at least 1 pull out sofa and 2(at least 1) recliners. So anything smaller than 29ft probably too small and also there are not many options out there smaller than 29ft.
  • We are thinking about moving every 2-3 weeks. Easy set up with auto leveling jacks makes everything easy but not necessary.

So far Grand Design REFLECTION 27RL and Arctic Fox 27-5L looks like great fits but they are hard to find used. And for these models, do I need a 1 ton diesel truck or can I go lower than that. If you think about the future, maybe 1 ton is the better choice.

What else is out there? Which make and brand 5th wheels? Thank you

Thank you very much
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Old 10-18-2018, 03:28 PM   #2
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My personal opinion is this. You have to go to as many RV shows and dealers as possible to see all the different insane floor plans the market is now producing. My wife and I went to 5 yrs worth of shows before we settled. Once u have seen what's out there u can make a better educated decision on something used.
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Old 10-18-2018, 06:44 PM   #3
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30-50k used look at a NuWa or Excel. They made many in the length you desire. Many were setup with solar already. May look at Carriage as well.
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Old 10-18-2018, 10:05 PM   #4
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Modern 3/4 ton is plenty for the 27RL. they are in the brochure as 11k GVWR, but ours said 9995 on the sticker. A one ton will give you room in the future at little more cost now.
As to full time in one, I don't think we could live with the step up around the bed. That's one of the main reasons we traded into the Solitude.
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Old 10-18-2018, 11:37 PM   #5
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Welcome to the forum. You might look at Outdoors RV Glacier Peak Class Titanium Series F30RKS TS.
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Old 10-19-2018, 04:49 AM   #6
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There are lots of posts about supposedly better built and short. That's a combination hard to find but not impossible. Better built will be heavier which is good but that means more truck needed. Considering you plan to full time I'd think you would want a minimum of a 1T SRW maybe going dually. Current Ram have close to 1000# more cargo capacity than current Ford/GM products in the SRW versions.

I wouldn't consider the Reflection a full time unit and Grand Design touts the Solitude as their "extended stay" model. That line didn't begin until 14 as I recall. I bought a Solitude 2015 320X that I'm selling, not because of quality but it doesn't meet the needs of us as we travel and was a not planned out purchase on my part.

I spent a lot of time researching the newer batch and am disgusted by complete lack of quality control of a unit leaving the factory. Disclaimer I didn't research New Horizon or Space Craft as they are well out of my budget of 90-120K.

My shift in search is now an older better and Carriage has been mentioned frequently. My brief search is encouraging so far but for you the length of 32' will be a problem. If you jump up to as much as 37' there is much more available. But heavier.

Good luck and wish me luck in my search too. Please do us a favor and occasionally post back how your searching is going. Too often posters come on, ask one question and disappear. The forum thrives on exchanging information.
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Old 10-19-2018, 07:32 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by CecilD View Post
Welcome to the forum. You might look at Outdoors RV Glacier Peak Class Titanium Series F30RKS TS.
They got some great features. f30rls would fit my needs better I guess. I will do my research about this one and try to find some reviews from fulltimers. thank you for your input.

P.S.: no f30rls is more than 34ft.
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Old 10-19-2018, 07:44 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by drwwicks View Post
There are lots of posts about supposedly better built and short. That's a combination hard to find but not impossible. Better built will be heavier which is good but that means more truck needed. Considering you plan to full time I'd think you would want a minimum of a 1T SRW maybe going dually. Current Ram have close to 1000# more cargo capacity than current Ford/GM products in the SRW versions.

I wouldn't consider the Reflection a full time unit and Grand Design touts the Solitude as their "extended stay" model. That line didn't begin until 14 as I recall. I bought a Solitude 2015 320X that I'm selling, not because of quality but it doesn't meet the needs of us as we travel and was a not planned out purchase on my part.

I spent a lot of time researching the newer batch and am disgusted by complete lack of quality control of a unit leaving the factory. Disclaimer I didn't research New Horizon or Space Craft as they are well out of my budget of 90-120K.

My shift in search is now an older better and Carriage has been mentioned frequently. My brief search is encouraging so far but for you the length of 32' will be a problem. If you jump up to as much as 37' there is much more available. But heavier.

Good luck and wish me luck in my search too. Please do us a favor and occasionally post back how your searching is going. Too often posters come on, ask one question and disappear. The forum thrives on exchanging information.
Thank you . I remember reading couple of your posts. Good luck on your research. let us know what you end up with. I will update here frequently hopefully.
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Old 10-19-2018, 08:16 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by consolenut View Post
30-50k used look at a NuWa or Excel. They made many in the length you desire. Many were setup with solar already. May look at Carriage as well.
50k might be a little stretch but you are right there are some nice old ones like this one too. I will keep an eye.
Even if this is an older model, everyone says they dont make them like these anymore.

https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/200...0RSO-121924742
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Old 10-19-2018, 09:38 AM   #10
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Excel and NuWa made great rigs. Solar prepped a lot of them and if you scout enough find an excel with a fiberglass roof. Lots of options also you could look at an artic fox 5ver as well.
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Old 10-19-2018, 09:43 AM   #11
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Northwood is probably the best newer boondocker out there right now that is new. I always liked the Alpenlites as they made plenty models below that length and had 100gallon tanks not including the water heater. They had solar and gen sets long before they were offered by other manufacturers. Models that would work would be Spyglass, Riviera and Valhalla. Right at your max would be Medina and Hillcrest. The old Sunnybrook Titans were a pile of bricks. Fit and finish very nice. Had 16" main frames with all steel decks and 1/2" plywood roofs. Only had 60 gallon tanks though. Guy that started Doubletree came from them. Vastly under rated RV. A very nice one for sale at PPL in Houston. General Coach made some very nice trailers for boondocking. Triple E, Excell, Alpha, Automate, Carriage and DRV all made smaller units at one time also. I wouldn't be scared of an older coach if it was taken care of.
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Old 10-19-2018, 11:08 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Elkfarmer View Post
Northwood is probably the best newer boondocker out there right now that is new. I always liked the Alpenlites as they made plenty models below that length and had 100gallon tanks not including the water heater. They had solar and gen sets long before they were offered by other manufacturers. Models that would work would be Spyglass, Riviera and Valhalla. Right at your max would be Medina and Hillcrest. The old Sunnybrook Titans were a pile of bricks. Fit and finish very nice. Had 16" main frames with all steel decks and 1/2" plywood roofs. Only had 60 gallon tanks though. Guy that started Doubletree came from them. Vastly under rated RV. A very nice one for sale at PPL in Houston. General Coach made some very nice trailers for boondocking. Triple E, Excell, Alpha, Automate, Carriage and DRV all made smaller units at one time also. I wouldn't be scared of an older coach if it was taken care of.
Thanks for your input. I found some great Excel models but older ones. Since I am planning to remodel inside, the only thing that matters for me is the durability of the whole rig and systems like electrical and plumbing.
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Old 10-22-2018, 07:29 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elkfarmer View Post
Northwood is probably the best newer boondocker out there right now that is new. I always liked the Alpenlites as they made plenty models below that length and had 100gallon tanks not including the water heater. They had solar and gen sets long before they were offered by other manufacturers. Models that would work would be Spyglass, Riviera and Valhalla. Right at your max would be Medina and Hillcrest. The old Sunnybrook Titans were a pile of bricks. Fit and finish very nice. Had 16" main frames with all steel decks and 1/2" plywood roofs. Only had 60 gallon tanks though. Guy that started Doubletree came from them. Vastly under rated RV. A very nice one for sale at PPL in Houston. General Coach made some very nice trailers for boondocking. Triple E, Excell, Alpha, Automate, Carriage and DRV all made smaller units at one time also. I wouldn't be scared of an older coach if it was taken care of.
I checked out Alpenlite after your post. They have great units. If I decide to go older, I will definitely consider these.
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Old 10-23-2018, 01:51 PM   #14
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Welcome to the forum. You might look at Outdoors RV Glacier Peak Class Titanium Series F30RKS TS.
I did my second research and besides their fresh water tank, it seems like a good fit. Depending on the truck, I think I can solve this water issue.
Thanks again.
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