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Old 06-08-2010, 05:24 AM   #1
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Slideouts on both sides

Just had a wonderful read of this site and decided I had to join.My wife and I have spent the last two years planning and saving for our imminent immigration/retirement to your beautiful country. More especially Colorado Springs where our son and d-i-l live.
I have also spent the last two years researching, via Ebay, which 5th wheel and truck to buy as we would like to spend a couple of years full timing before we get too old!!!
Having spent the last ten years as owners of a 40' catamaran, we're familiar with remote mobile living and all its idiosyncrasies and, of course, delights !
First of many questions concerns the more recent design 5th wheels which have slides on both sides of the rear of the 5th wheel. It makes for a lot of room in the rear living designations but is that a problem in the RV parks where space may be limited?
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Old 06-08-2010, 07:35 AM   #2
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My 35 foot fiver has three slides, and to be honest I find the length more of a problem where I like to camp. There is only one park that refused me for having slides on both sides. It is a wonderful older park, but not upgrading I guess it is their loss.
What kinds of parks to you think you will be camping at? Full hookup resort types or remote National Forest camp grounds? That will make some difference. Personally I would be more concerned with a floor plan and comfortable living for you. Then a properly matched tow vehicle to the chosen fiver lastly.
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Old 06-08-2010, 08:06 AM   #3
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As stated earlier, as far as slides on both sides is really not an issue unless you are staying in alot of small older parks. You should be more worried about the Tow Rig to ensure it is properly rated to tow what you decide on. Pay attention to the GVWR of the 5th wheel and the Hitch weight of the 5th wheel. Don't let the dealers sell you a 5th wheel telling you it can be towed with a 1/2 truck but still have a GVWR of 14k loaded with a 2400lb pin weight.

If you have to go large on the Tow Rig then do it, you won't regret it in the long run but going small will bite you and you will be saying I should have listen to them.

From what I have seen the longer the 5th wheel the harder it is to get into the older parks so pay attention to their MAX length for spots. Some of these fivers are as long as Class A's.

Good luck in your search but don't give up you will find what you are looking for
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Old 06-08-2010, 04:51 PM   #4
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Hey guys,
Thanks for the replies. The TV I will be looking for is a Dodge Ram3500 dually and from reading very many posts on the forum I also need the following - rear axle 4.10, not lifted, exhaust brake, preferably 4 x 2, NOT short bed (therefore I don't need a sliding hitch).
All of the above in a 2006-2008 for about $26K and White (ha ha) hmmm needle in a haystack eh?
The 5th wheels we like are 30 - 32ft up to 5 years old Jayco Eagle, Keystone Montana and Sundance.
Whilst I understand your advice to buy the 5th wheel first, we will also be requiring the vehicle immediately on arrival in the states (we need a vehicle). going for the bigger vehicle should allow this reversal of proceedure....do you think?
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Old 06-08-2010, 05:08 PM   #5
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Also, the parks we would stay in is pretty much open (we're not sure) as all will be be new to us (Australians). However, a powerful factor in that decision will be our requirement to stay within a budget which we know is increasingly difficult to determine. Especially as we want to see and do so much. Our plan is to see many national and state parks and then slow down and 'smell the roses'. We should have started 20 years ago.......
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Old 06-08-2010, 06:35 PM   #6
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Prior to our current coach, we owned a 2004 Keystone Cougar 286EFS with opposing slides. It was, by far, more spacious than our current Bounder. It was 31-1/2ft long & we pulled it with a 2003 Chevy 2500HD Crew Cab 4x4 shortbed 6L gas 4.10 ra (which, by the way, we saved a TON of money on buying used) truck.

Although I cannot vouch for campgrounds/parks out west (because we haven't been to any), at least for the ones we have been to in the east, we had very vew campsites we could not fit in. Levelling was more of an issue, remedied by carrying several 2x12 boards in different lengths to run the wheels up on or to place under jacks. Calling a campground, rather than relying on website specs, is the best way to assure you'll get a site you will fit into.

Fulltiming is a great way to see our beautiful country. You will have a wonderful time.

Keep posting your questions & we'll be glad to help you.

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Old 06-08-2010, 07:41 PM   #7
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Buy have I got a deal for you LOL.
Actually you describe my truck exactly. Whether you get a 4X4 or a 4X2 is really immaterial. Except maybe for a slight penalty in fuel economy. As for the 4.10 rear end, it really is not necessary IF you get a newer Dodge with the 6.7L Cummins. The automatic has two overdrives and downshifting is a matter of pushing one button. Mine happens to have 4.10 rear end, but even punning my 13,350 pound fiver I am firmly convinced that the 3.73 would to the job with ease. As for searching for the truck, look at Dave Smith Motors in Kellogg, Idaho. You will likely find their prices about the best around. Also check out Ebay for comparisons.
The brands you are interested in depending on GVWR might be pulled comfortably with a 1 ton SRW. Before you straddle yourself with a dually and then a lighter smaller fiver do the math again to be sure.
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Old 06-08-2010, 08:23 PM   #8
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As stated in a lot of cases a SB will do the job but will limit you in overal weight but NOT by much maybe 500 - 1500 lbs. If you decide to go SB don't let them talk lyou out of a Slider Hitch. It may cost more but will save you a lot of money down the road.
Make sure no matter what you get to get a 1 ton, this will make a difference in Hitch weight for the bigger 5th wheels.
There is nothing wrong with the 2010 Dodge's, I believe they fixed the Turbo issues and the MPG issue.
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Old 06-08-2010, 08:33 PM   #9
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Hey Don,
I'll checkout Dave Smith Motors. There were a lot of 'for and against' discussions on the specs of the 1 ton tow vehicles (on this site) and I realise my previously quoted requirements were over the top. As such they do reasonably ensure a correct decision if I buy the horse before the cart.
I have spent a lot of time researching via Ebay as there are plenty of specs and pictures (which I need as I am out of the country). Also, coming from Aus. these vehicles are MUCH bigger than anything we ever see so it is easy to presume incorrectly that they'll do the job!
A new question - Am I dreaming thinking I can get by on a day to day budget of $1800 per month (excluding vehicle repair expenses and insurance etc.)
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Old 06-08-2010, 08:38 PM   #10
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You might want to check in with the Full-Timers Forum on this site for budget answers. If anyone's got a handle on how much it costs, day-to-day, they would.

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Old 06-08-2010, 08:50 PM   #11
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SuperGewl,
I had read that a short base will work especially with a slider but....in buying second hand and needing to keep my options open, a std or long bed seem to be more available in my choice of truck. If that is the case, is a slider necessary - again it's a budget consideration.
As is a 2010 truck which I can't afford. Can you (as an owner) expand a bit on the turbo and MPG issues of the 2007 - 2009 trucks. I have heard a little but mostly from non owners (detractors).
Tom.
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Old 06-08-2010, 09:22 PM   #12
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Look at it this way, Daily camping rates in this part of the country range from a low of 16 dollars for a National Forest site to a high of 40 dollars a day for a full hookup premium park. Monthly rates are around 500-600 a month plus electricity. Weekly rates are somewhere in between these two numbers. Food, depends on what you like eating? Steak every night or lots of ground beef and pasta.
Fuel will average 10MPG at 3 dollars a gallon. Don't forget insurance. Can you get by on 1800 a month? Probably. Might want to join one of the full time forums like excapers and ask the same question.
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Old 06-10-2010, 11:30 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shekinah View Post
SuperGewl,
I had read that a short base will work especially with a slider but....in buying second hand and needing to keep my options open, a std or long bed seem to be more available in my choice of truck. If that is the case, is a slider necessary - again it's a budget consideration.
As is a 2010 truck which I can't afford. Can you (as an owner) expand a bit on the turbo and MPG issues of the 2007 - 2009 trucks. I have heard a little but mostly from non owners (detractors).
Tom.
With Long Bed trucks NO slider is necessary. As far as issues with the various trucks, the 03-06 got better fuel mileage, at the change to the 6.7ltr Dodge there are reports of various issues with the VNT. The older models didn't have as much computer control as the newr models; however the newer do have some advantages as far as Tranny control. Some hate it some don't.

Good luck in the hunt. Have the Tranny checked on any truck you pick before you buy it, also have the injectors checked and the valve lash adjusted if it is over 100k.
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Old 06-11-2010, 06:07 AM   #14
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Hey SuperGewl,
Thanks for the info about things to check (tranny, injectors etc) which I'll certainly do. I'm getting quite a 'dossier' on the add on things I should look for on a truck.
It'll be a tall order to get them all on one truck but it's really good to be armed with you guy's knowledge. My choice will certainly be better for that.
Also knowing the add on costs of all those extras, if I find most of them on a more expensive truck then I'll be happier to pay the extra!
Hmmm I'd better not let the salesman hear that ha ha.
Tom
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