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Old 10-10-2018, 11:50 PM   #1
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Need Honest Input on Our Top 4

We are going to be selling our home and downsizing to a 5th wheel and living in it full time here in South Central Alaska (Anchorage/Wasilla area).

We have narrrowed our choices to four manufacturers and we are looking for honest assessments based on your experience, not opinions. I'm not trying to start a brand bashing session, again, just looking for real world experience. Living in Alaska, we can't just jump in the car and hit our local dealer, that's why we are looking for your input. We are however, going to be doing factory tours of each manufacturer, trying to spend a day at each one just prior to the Thanksgiving holiday.

Our top four in no particular order:
1. DRV
2. Spacecraft
3. Luxe
4. New Horizons

We are aware of the cost of #2 & #4. We see whatever choice we make as being our next home and we are willing to spend the money, but we are also aware that sometimes you don't get what you pay for.

For what it's worth, tow vehicle is an '18 Ram 3500, 6.7 HO Cummins, Aisin tranny, 4.10 rear, and factory self leveling airbags with a 30k 5th wheel.

TIA,
Bryan
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Old 10-11-2018, 08:47 AM   #2
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Watching for responses.

I have my opinions based on lots of research I've done on two of those brands, but you said you're not looking for opinions.
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Old 10-11-2018, 12:08 PM   #3
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Central.Alaska #2 and #4 are the only options to look at. DRV isn't up to the Alaskan winter challenge. #5 should be a early 2000's Teton that will be a rig up to the challenge of alaska. Truck to pull the 3 viable options is another story.
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Old 10-11-2018, 01:18 PM   #4
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We had a DRV for a short time after selling our Alpenlite of 16 years. I did not like the quality. Drafty around the opposing slides. Cable slide in bedroom was problematic. Worst thing was the wiring and water runs. Nothing in the underside was put together as well as the previous trailer. Guess I got spoiled. I also didn't like the stamped aluminum roof design. It seemed to transfer this Texas heat to much to the interior(inflated R-Values). Very nice to look at but never thought of it as the same quality as my Newmar or Alpenlite. We went to all of those factories before our last purchase. The Spacecraft was our favorite but we decided to not purchase since we both still work full time. In 10 years I will revisit. I liked the roof construction..2 layers of thick fiberglass filled with insulation. They also use the polystyrene in the walls the same as New Horizon. Teton and Nuwa also used the same foam. They will build anything you want. Both the customs have a frame that will last forever. Not made by Lippert like DRV and Luxe. Luxe has a 2" box underneath the frame but is still lacking the steel upper deck. DRV has the steel upper deck but both have the Lippert cheasy ladder crossmembers. There is only three left with an in house frame. The customs you listed and Northwood/Outdoors RV. I would seriously consider the Spacecraft for your application if nothing else but for the strength of the frame and the roof design. Truck will pull it fine unless you build one to big with a huge pin. Good luck and take your time at the factories. Look at everything with open eyes and compare accordingly.
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Old 10-11-2018, 06:00 PM   #5
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My 2 cents

First a question. How cold does it get in the winter?
All 4 manufactures were on our list while we were narrowing the field.
I'd say that DRV and Luxe are not on the same level as Spacecraft and NH. Both have been purchased and are now part of larger organizations.
There is a substantial difference in price as well so I'm not sure it's a fair comparison. Spacecraft has also changed hands recently. Time will tell if it's a good thing or not. They are smaller than NH.
We purchased a NH Summit and took delivery in June and are very happy with our purchase. I would recommend visiting NH to place the order it was easier than working on the phone. I know that NH can provide various options to make your long dark winter a little sunnier. We worked with Drew and he did a great job.
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Old 10-11-2018, 11:29 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mjdenn View Post
First a question. How cold does it get in the winter?
All 4 manufactures were on our list while we were narrowing the field.
I'd say that DRV and Luxe are not on the same level as Spacecraft and NH. Both have been purchased and are now part of larger organizations.
There is a substantial difference in price as well so I'm not sure it's a fair comparison. Spacecraft has also changed hands recently. Time will tell if it's a good thing or not. They are smaller than NH.
We purchased a NH Summit and took delivery in June and are very happy with our purchase. I would recommend visiting NH to place the order it was easier than working on the phone. I know that NH can provide various options to make your long dark winter a little sunnier. We worked with Drew and he did a great job.
Thanks for your input. Here we've seen temps as low as -28 but it's not the norm, typically it hovers around the 0 to -15 for a few weeks then in the single digits. We will be hitting all of the factories next month when we come down.

I have to say that to date, I haven't been impressed with NH's communications. I've emailed them multiple times, spoke with Drew and heard his "I'll call or email you tomorrow to address your questions", never to hear from him. Not a good way to win over potential customers.
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Old 10-12-2018, 06:40 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Bgonzo View Post
Thanks for your input. Here we've seen temps as low as -28 but it's not the norm, typically it hovers around the 0 to -15 for a few weeks then in the single digits. We will be hitting all of the factories next month when we come down.

I have to say that to date, I haven't been impressed with NH's communications. I've emailed them multiple times, spoke with Drew and heard his "I'll call or email you tomorrow to address your questions", never to hear from him. Not a good way to win over potential customers.
I would suggest working with Cole. He always communicated with us in a very timely manner. In fact, we took delivery 18 months ago, and he still responds right away if we email him with a question or concern. We love our New Horizons, and although we have never experienced the temps that you will, I think you would be best served with NH.
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Old 10-12-2018, 06:51 PM   #8
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Ok, all opinion from research.

The DRV is junk campared to the others.

The Luxe is junk compared to NH or SpaceCraft

For Alaska I wonder if you could customize the insulation.
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Old 10-13-2018, 06:49 AM   #9
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We had a DRV. We liked it while we had it. First ever camper. It was drafty. We literally stuffed foam stripping around slides to reduce air coming in. Sold it and got present Teton. DRV and Teton not in same class even. But any Teton you get is going to be old. I don't have a problem with this but some do. Luxe is a fine looking unit. Never meet a dissatisfied owner. All I can really say about a Luxe. I have been in Spacecrafts and New Horizons. Both are great units. Excellent chassis, good as it gets in insulation in 5th wheels. Custom anything your pocket book can stand. If you do go custom, look hard at mini split heat pumps. Either will put them in. Personally I would not even consider a 3500 for a custom unit. Minumun 5500 or HDT. My Teton is too much for 3500. Too much pin weight.
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Old 10-13-2018, 05:10 PM   #10
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DRV fits our current F-T price niche. We will probably refresh it with another DRV in a few yrs. but we only chase sunny 70 deg. weather around. After some winter(s) in N MT in a sturdy expanding towable. All I can say is we're not cowboy enough for that abuse anymore.
Opinions are kind of like body orifices, everyone has several...

Best of luck.
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Old 10-13-2018, 07:35 PM   #11
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Living in it full-time? Will you ever be towing it, or just permanent on-site? Reason I ask, is any of them would require some optional winterizing around the perimeter. Outside of that, owning a 2nd DRV, I would not attempt to live in your winters in it.
Find some NH and Spacecraft owners and ask them...
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Old 10-16-2018, 06:27 AM   #12
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I know you mentioned new but with some of what you want and one poster is in a Teton this was brought up on another thread here might be worth a look. Good luck on your decision.

https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/200...LTD-5003851496
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Old 10-16-2018, 08:37 AM   #13
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We toured the DRV and New Horizon factories and have spent hours looking at DRV's sitting on lots and at a few New Horizon units as well plus have spent countless hour's researching online like you probably area.
Luxe and Spacecraft just never drew me in enough to seek them out I guess.

DRV is a nice unit but in the end we could not overlook the attention to detail and the quality of the New Horizon units, in fact we ordered a 40' Majestic which should be the second 2020 model off the line after the show model unit and hope to pick it up in April.
Being able to customize it the way we wanted was also very important even though we didn't really do anything over the top.
We are dealing with Cole, nice guy and helpful.
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Old 10-16-2018, 08:52 AM   #14
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