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Old 05-13-2013, 07:31 PM   #1
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Smile Help! Sorting out best 5r to purchase

Hello Someday Friends,
We are jumping into RVing. We hope to spend 1/2 the year traveling/camping around the US & Canada at first...I would like to eventually sell our home and be a full-timer...gotta convince my dear husband.

Hoping to make a smart purchase...but need help to wise up.
We started thinking Class A...rented one and started asking...why not a 5r. I've found a Keystone Cougar that I like (318SABWE), also have looked at the Bighorn & read about Komfort. Considering value, how well are these made, how well do they hold up...what do you suggest? Appreciate your feedback. Also trying to figure out how to attach our two 9 foot kayaks on the back for travel. Possible?
Thank you.
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Old 05-13-2013, 08:10 PM   #2
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Old 05-13-2013, 08:22 PM   #3
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We had 4 , 5ers before we went to a "A" never got everything we wanted in the 5ers. Probably because I didn't feel comfortable towing anything over 32' , 10,000 GVW. gets to the point of the tail wagging the dog; IMHO; when the trailer starts weighing twice what the truck does.
We were due for a new truck and our last 5er was starting to show it's age , got into a used "A" for less than the truck would have cost. But that's just our story , might not work for everyone.
As 5ers go , Cougar is entry level ( read that as built cheap ) friends have one, not sure of the floor plan # but it has 2 rear slides; opposed + bedroom slide. Poor insulation ( gets way hotter in the same conditions than any of my 5ers ever did ) wasn't wired for a fantastic fan , and stairs to the bedroom are 8 1/2" tall, not great for access, to the bathroom and bedroom. If your looking for something to keep for a while , look for something built better.
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Old 05-13-2013, 11:52 PM   #4
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Welcome to the forum. You are going to get a bunch of different opinions as to which type of unit and which manufacturer as well. If you are going to stay with the fifth wheel route then make sure your truck is capable of towing the required weight. It's better to go overboard with the truck then under, this will ensure your truck is properly rated and should not be an issue if you ever wish to upgrade the fiver at some point. Also another piece to go overboard on would the fifth wheel hitch.

We have an Arctic Fox built by Northwoods Mfg. This is a very well built unit and is suitable for fulltiming. See the website here Northwood Manufacturing: Arctic Fox we have the 29-5K.

This is a link on this forum of how to deal with your kayaks Carrying a kayak
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Old 05-14-2013, 06:24 AM   #5
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Greetings and welcome,

Like someone already said you will get lots of opinions and here comes another! We have camped for years and started with popups and moved to a pull behind and eventually our first 5th wheel. We just traded it in for a new one. It was a Jayco Designer and we enjoyed it for four years. It was an excellent camper. Solid and big and comfy. We bought it new because we got a great deal and we could not find a used camper that had been Cared for the way we would have cared for one. We bought Jayco because it was the one manufacturer that we never found talked about in Trailer life and other resources as having problems. It was a great buy. No problems at all. We just traded up to a DRV Mobile Suites because we were ready to upgrade and get ready for full time and for us we just knew we wanted more sturdy foundation and luxury in a full time home. . We are both still working for another few years but if the opportunity arises to sell our house and live in the RV we would like to be ready to take it. Bottom line is take the time to do research and know what you want. The "hunt" is part of the fun! Best of luck to you.
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Old 05-14-2013, 06:52 AM   #6
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To carry the kayaks, you want to add a hitch receiver to the front of the truck and either a single roof rack or a single ladder rack. Yakima and Thule each make the tall support to go into the front hitch. One is called Dry Dock and the other is Goal Post, but I can't remember which is which.

I am in the process of setting it up for my rig.

See Google Image Result for http://i671.photobucket.com/albums/vv77/lakeoftworivers/truck%20and%20rv/100_3980.jpg
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Old 05-14-2013, 07:07 AM   #7
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A big thing to consider is whether the trailer is suited for full time use. The Bighorns are warranted and suited for full timers as well as the Landmark and Big Country. We started our full time adventures in a Big Horn and now have a Landmark and love it.
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Old 05-14-2013, 10:03 AM   #8
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5r sorting options...how 'bout the Montana?

Hello again...appreciated all the input yesterday...today's 5r's under consideration after sifting through your responses and online reviews...
Montana or Big Country...we don't want to go over 34 feet...would prefer 30 feet, but really want a full size queen, decent kitchen and rear seating area with windows.
Is the Montana still in the "cheaply made" category? Can't find any Big Country dealers that have what we want in Oregon where we could go look.

All suggestions and recommendations are appreciated. Thanks again. Altrego
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Old 05-14-2013, 10:50 AM   #9
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There is dealer Excel in Oregon, not sure which town. Excel from Peterson Industries makes fifth wheels for full timers. Go to there web site and check the floor plans. Well made and do have Fivers under 30'. But you will have to find one. Most full timers want the Washer/dryer option. Only draw back is are they normally over 35'. I am doing my reasearch now like you. Hope this helps. Make sure you get a good Truck 1 ton Dually any brand will do,(Ford, Chevy,GMC) Your preference of course.
Good Luck
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:01 AM   #10
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I'm a Cougar 318SAB owner. Don't consider it "entry level"...it is a step up from the Hornet and Springdale (Keystone's "entry level" 5ers). We've been using ours since '11 (bought new) and have had one issue with it. The trim around the little table in the back came loose. Some 6000 adhesive and all is good. No there isn't a Fantastic Fan in the living area, nor is there wiring, however, it took me all of 15 minutes to install pulling the power off a light wire 5' away. Twin A/C units and we stay cool and comfortable up to 118 degrees (El Centro, CA).

Is it a full time rig? It isn't well insulated, but, really, very, very few are insulated to the point where "touring" in Montana in February would be a good idea. Is it insulated well enough to "tour" for 9 months and then snowbird in a warmer area? Yes, we do it. Spend 5-6 months on the road, then a couple of months down south to get away from our PA cold.

Every trailer made will have their loyal followers... I'm one of the Cougar variety. Every trailer made will have their problems...nature of the beast and all the manufacturers use the same components (Dometic, Atwood, Suburban, etc.) and most all the frames and walls are built the same (if you are talking about the Keystone 5ers they come off the same assembly lines, put together by the same assemblers). What changes in most of them is the "level" of amenities; is the furniture faux leather, fabric, or real leather? Is the counter top a lighter weight laminate, manmade material, or unbelievably heavy stone? How important to you is having "upscale" accouterments that will not return your investment?

All of them will have issues during your ownership...pick the one that appeals most to you after doing some research, but, don't base your decision solely on the input from others (myself included). Keep an open mind, know how you live and travel, pick the best floorplan and price point that you can afford (keep in mind these things are not houses...there is no "return" on your investment) and that suits your needs while keeping in the back of your mind, that here, on this forum as in others, you only hear the "bad". I've never started a thread or posted a comment that was "I love my Cougar 318SAB", but, we do
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Old 05-17-2013, 09:35 PM   #11
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Might I suggest you look at Palomino Sabre or Columbus models. We bought a Sabre a couple months ago and the value for are money is great!
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Old 05-18-2013, 07:08 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by altrego52 View Post
Hello Someday Friends,
We are jumping into RVing. We hope to spend 1/2 the year traveling/camping around the US & Canada at first...I would like to eventually sell our home and be a full-timer...gotta convince my dear husband.

Hoping to make a smart purchase...but need help to wise up.
We started thinking Class A...rented one and started asking...why not a 5r. I've found a Keystone Cougar that I like (318SABWE), also have looked at the Bighorn & read about Komfort. Considering value, how well are these made, how well do they hold up...what do you suggest? Appreciate your feedback. Also trying to figure out how to attach our two 9 foot kayaks on the back for travel. Possible?
Thank you.
Hello
It really depends on your budget or how much your are willing to spend. In my opinion you would be better served by purchasing a good quality used unit built for full timing. There only a few manufactures that are in that category. As mentioned before Keystone will not hold up, I had one for a few years, never again.

Here are a few that have a sold reputation and would serve you well

Excel a great company http://www.excelrvs.com/

DRV Mobile Suites http://www.drvsuites.com/index

New Horizons. http://www.horizonsrv.com/

Northwood manufacturing has a new 5er rated for full time use. http://northwoodmfg.com/

Nuwa http://www.nuwa.com/

Some good websites to search are:

www.pplmotorhomes.com

www.rvt.com (my favorite) found our curet rig there.

www.rvtrader.com

www.rvsforless.com

We are Titanium owners and really like our rig. We are extended stay users and do about 12 to 14 trips a year. We have many friends with Titaniums and some are full time. Some folk shy away from Titaniums because they went out of business in 2010 but all rigs runout of warranty.

Hope you find this helpful
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Old 05-18-2013, 08:21 AM   #13
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Here is a link to a MS at PPL http://www.pplmotorhomes.com/5thwhee...ites-23580.htm
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Old 05-18-2013, 08:37 AM   #14
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Your budget will dictate choices to a degree,The most difficult task is to imagine your needs long or short term,I also thought 30' was enough and it was - for a while.Full timing or long timing I now think 35' is 'best size' showers are too small in 30'ers and storage is inadequate,remember we stay the same size so every extra foot of trailer is a bonus.
Get the best quality you can, as some else posted ,buying two cheap trailers is false economy.
Look for 4 season trailers as per thelist already posted
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