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Old 11-08-2015, 06:52 AM   #1
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Please rank and comment

Although we can't afford to buy new vehicles, we do prefer high quality. As we explore the idea of switching from our Foretravel MH to a 5'er, we've heard that the following five brands are the ones we should look at. I've listed them in alphabetical order and summarized what we know about them at this point. I do know that all five brands are likely to be fairly heavy, requiring at least an F350-class truck, and that's fine with us.

I'm not interested in starting a brand war, but would like to hear from those of you who have owned one or more of these brands, and I'd like to see your ranking of them. Please note that you are ranking brands, not specific coaches. Should we decide to go this way I may ask for your opinions about specific coaches.

DRV. I think this is the only brand that has 3.5" think walls, and therefore would have better (thicker) sidewall insulation. We were impressed when we toured the factory a few years ago. They have a reputation for having strong frames.

Forks. These are custom-build coaches, and fairly rare, at least from what I've found.

New Horizons. Another custom builder, but much more common. They have a reputation of good customer service.

Spacecraft. The third custom builder. Like Forks, they are pretty rare. I actually know the area where they are built.

Teton. The only one on the list that isn't still made. I've been told that the best ones are pre-2005.

So, how would you rank these five brands? Let the opinions (backed up with facts if possible) begin.

David, kb0zke
Mercury Mountaineer towing mpg 181(both sold)
1993 Foretravel U300 40'
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Old 11-08-2015, 08:40 AM   #2
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Newmar - Carraige

Just trying to give you some input as we haven't owned any of the products. Neither Newmar or Carraige are building 5th wheels any longer but both have great reputations. We owned a Newmar and the quality was great.

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Old 11-08-2015, 08:40 AM   #3
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Never owned any of them but the DRV and Teton are well known as quality units. Be aware that either will probably require an F350 dually, or perhaps F450.
--2005 F350 Superduty Crewcab, 6.0, 4wd, short bed, 3.73 gears
--2016 Montana 3711FL, 40'
--SOLD 2014 Wildcat 327CK, 38'
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Old 11-08-2015, 09:12 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by ralphie View Post
Never owned any of them but the DRV and Teton are well known as quality units. Be aware that either will probably require an F350 dually, or perhaps F450.
This will pull any of the DRV's 32.500# in pic.

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Old 11-08-2015, 10:47 AM   #5
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Well, we are biased because we have owned 2 Drv's. We had a 2007 Drv Select Suite that we lived in for 5 1/2 years. It was a great fulltime unit, held up well, good factory support. We have now owned and lived in a 2012 Drv Mobile Suite for 4 years, same comments. My biggest issue is that Drv tried that Schwintek track slide system on the 2012 and early 2013 models. We had to have it rebuilt at our cost, $2400. At the national rally last June the factory rep told everyone how the factory would continue to stand behind these units. Uh no. I would still buy another Drv, a quality product.
Spacecraft and New Horizons, as you say are few & far between due to the high cost. You may have trouble getting a dealer to work on it when you need a repair. If they aren't familiar with the unit they tend to decline. And there will be repairs, on any unit. Forks are so new to the market, comments would be the same, except that there are no used units out there. There's a Drv dealer in Elk City, OK that is going to carry the Forks but after many months of advertising them on their website they still don't have a model to show. Rolling Retreats. Tetons are good rigs but are getting old, there are still some good units out there.
You are smart to look for a good quality used unit. My 2 cents, don't try to find the perfect unit, no such thing, you have owned a MH, you know that. Look for owner's forums like www.suitesowners.com. Actual owners are going to be your best resource. There may not be one for Forks, New Horizons, or Spacecraft.
Jan & Thomas
2012 Drv Mobile Suite
2012 Ford F350 Super Duty
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