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Old 09-02-2014, 08:54 PM   #1
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Going Full time in a 5th wheel many questions

My wife and I are going to go full time in a 5th wheel beginning in October. We live in PA and are going to have it in a campground year round because we are still working full time.We are looking at a 2015 Keystone Mountaineer 350QBQ. We do not have truck and do not plan on getting one for about two years maybe sooner. My question is any advice on the Mountaineer are they good quality for full time living ? The next question is what truck would you recommend ? I was thinking a dually 3500 diesel but not sure if Chevy, Ford , or Dodge is best. I want the best truck at the best price of coarse.We have even considered getting a smaller travel trailer and 1500 truck to travel around in. Then we would just leave the 5th wheel stay put as our permanent home base. Any thoughts recommendations?!
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Old 09-02-2014, 09:19 PM   #2
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My best advice for properly matching a truck to your 5er, is to use this online 5th wheel calculator . Take note it uses only real-time, actual weights, to remove any guesswork from making a decision. One cannot have too-much truck, however, from personal experience I can say, a dually does get tedious to use as a daily driver. Hopefully a 1-ton single rear wheel truck will have the capacity + some excess, to properly and safely tow your 5er. Speaking of a dually, Dodge has the best tow ratings of the big-three.
Good luck with your decision making process. Do not allow any salesman to get in your head, a quick decision is not in your favor.
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Old 09-05-2014, 12:25 AM   #3
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Theres a lot of threads regarding suitable full time rigs....I don't think the keystone rig is a full time rig...Due a lot of reading and asking questions before settling on a suitable 5er that will work for you.
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Old 09-05-2014, 07:58 AM   #4
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There are several "full time" brands/models, but I don't believe Montana is one of them. In addition to other recommendations, the Jayco Pinnacle line is one of the lower cost full time units. Full time units are heavier, stronger and better insulated. Be sure to get thermal windows and all weather package options.
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Old 09-05-2014, 10:54 AM   #5
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I'll throw in my thoughts;

Have a look at a high quality used unit, slightly used units can be had at a fraction of the original MSRP - especially if its going to sit alot in PA.

You are going to get alot of members telling you that their brand is the only brand to full time in - you will really have to pick a floor plan, price point and build quality that is acceptable to you. If you go new it really makes a BIG difference to get a manufacturer that is easy to deal with and stands behind their product.

We looked at a variety of units before we purchased our most recent fifth wheel, While the Pinnacle has some neat design ideas, you would have to be gentle on it to full time with it - get out there and really do a hands on comparison.

Have a look at used Newmar fifth wheels - these were well built units and can be had in full body paint at great prices these days - I believe Newmar did the last production of their 5vers in 2009/10 before they switched to all motorhome production.

As far as the TV goes - well that opens up a even bigger can of worms.....

My opinion is this; having had a multitude of Ford F150's, F250', F350's and a F450 for farm and towing use over the years I would not be able to put my hard earned money down on their current diesel engine. The 7.3 version was the best that I drove;
After having 2 motorhomes with the Cummins ISB and ISL variants I knew that my next truck for towing would be the RAM with the 6.7L.
In my next life I will be able to order a 1 ton truck with a Ford interior, a Chevrolet transmission and Rams engine.....
Again, get out and test drive some trucks and talk to as many people as possible.



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Old 09-05-2014, 01:41 PM   #6
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If your going full time in PA. I wouldn't be looking at Moutaineer. It get cold up there. Full time units are full time for a reason. There built for it. New full time I would be looking at Excel, New Horizons, Evergreen Lifestyle, or "maybe" DRV. If your looking for price point or reasonable budget, then Teton, Newmar, Excel, Travel Supreme. The units listed have stood the test of time. Even though the manufacturer quit making 5th wheels in the case of Newmar. OR they just closed up shop with Teton. Teton family just closed and still have the RV hall of fame. Can you full time a mountaineer or others yes. Just dont tell them you do. Also prepare to spend more in heating and cooling costs. More propane etc. Just my advise.
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Old 09-05-2014, 03:28 PM   #7
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Fulltime in PA, yikes, really cold. As others have said you need a really well insulated unit, an enclosed and insulated "belly" and dual paned windows. I will second the recommendation to buy a quality used unit. The brands mentioned Excel, Travel Supreme, Drv, maybe Jayco. Don't believe anything a salesman tells you, check out the unit yourself as to what insulating qualities it has. You can buy a really nice used unit with good insulation. Choose a floorplan that looks liveable to you, you can always buy new later. We've been fulltime for 8 years and have purchased 2 new units while fulltiming. We have had 2 Drv's so we have a biased opinion but they are well insulated.
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Old 09-07-2014, 07:56 AM   #8
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The new Ford 6.7 is the best no question, especially if you want all the options, but it's not cheap, lol!
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Old 09-08-2014, 06:58 AM   #9
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The new Ford 6.7 is the best no question, especially if you want all the options, but it's not cheap, lol!
I thought the only diesel option in new is the 7.3, but a good engine from what I hear.
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Old 09-08-2014, 10:09 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Ray,IN View Post
My best advice for properly matching a truck to your 5er, is to use this online 5th wheel calculator . Take note it uses only real-time, actual weights, to remove any guesswork from making a decision. One cannot have too-much truck, however, from personal experience I can say, a dually does get tedious to use as a daily driver. Hopefully a 1-ton single rear wheel truck will have the capacity + some excess, to properly and safely tow your 5er. Speaking of a dually, Dodge has the best tow ratings of the big-three.
Good luck with your decision making process. Do not allow any salesman to get in your head, a quick decision is not in your favor.

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Old 09-08-2014, 10:20 AM   #11
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Honest question, and maybe others can answer: if you need repairs, warranty or otherwise, and don't have a tow vehicle, won't that mean you'll have to pay to have the unit towed to and from the shop? I should think that would get expensive.
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Old 09-08-2014, 10:33 AM   #12
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Make sure you understand the difference between a four season rig and a full-time rig. Four season mearly means it can be used in all four seasons. Meaning it has minimal freeze protection. It has nothing to do with overall insulation performance in cold and hot weather. The salesman will tell you just about anything. We full-time in an Excel. There are other full-time rigs as stated. If you go with a used rig carefully inspectfor water damage and floor rot. Good luck.
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Old 09-08-2014, 12:49 PM   #13
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I thought the only diesel option in new is the 7.3, but a good engine from what I hear.
They quit making that in 2004, lol! The 6.7 is the new one, came out in 2011 and it's awesome.
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Old 09-08-2014, 12:52 PM   #14
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Honest question, and maybe others can answer: if you need repairs, warranty or otherwise, and don't have a tow vehicle, won't that mean you'll have to pay to have the unit towed to and from the shop? I should think that would get expensive.
Most places will come to you for repairs, but it shouldn't be hard finding a friend with a truck if you gotta pull it in. Especially if you're living in a campground cause almost literally every other person there will have one, lol
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