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Old 01-17-2015, 08:11 AM   #1
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Who Makes the Best 5th Wheel, Who makes Junk?

I'm shopping for a 5th wheel Toy Hauler (used). Going to be hauling a couple of full size Harley's.
I'm a retired truck driver, own a Dually Diesel Truck, also own and pull gooseneck trailer from 20' to 38'.
So size doesn't matter in this situation (LOL)
I figured here would be the best place to find out. Who has aluminum framing etc

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Old 01-17-2015, 01:54 PM   #2
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A lot depends on who you talk to as to who makes the best and who makes Junk. DRV used to make quality, but that is now up in the air as they have been bought out by THor (not saying that they still aren't quality, but only time will tell), Excel makes a good quality, also New Horizons. Those are a couple of high end manufacturers. Your best bet is to read through the forums of the different manufacturers and see what the people that own the different brands have to say about them. You still need to watch the GVWR of some of the bigger units, because they go over 24,000# GVWR and even with some of the newer duallies, it will overload them. Good luck on your search, and welcome to the IRV2 family.

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Old 01-17-2015, 03:37 PM   #3
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Thank you Frank for the reply. Do some research.
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Old 01-17-2015, 05:11 PM   #4
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Can't reply as to what they are made of but just like cars, you can get excellent units and junk from the same manufacturer. A thorough PDI should be done before any purchase
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Old 01-19-2015, 07:22 PM   #5
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My money is on jayco
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Old 01-21-2015, 08:44 AM   #6
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If you want quality and strength in a toy hauler. Look for a newmar x-aire or tetons toy hauler. Dont know the name off hand. The tetons i have seen had 4 axles under them. Jayco and thor and keystone make entry levels in my opinion. Two full size harleys i would go newmar. The newmar will be 20-30% heavier emoty but its alot better build. I dont think excel or drv ever made a toyhauler. I may be wrong
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Old 01-21-2015, 08:59 AM   #7
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Old 01-21-2015, 02:44 PM   #8
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Yes Thor bought out DRV, but they build them the same way. There is Excel and New Horizons, but they are limited on their Toyhaulers. Do your research on how they are structurally built. You can't go wrong on any of these "high-end" toyhaulers, but the next level isn't too bad. As far as quality, I like Evergreen's Tesla and Forest River Vengeance and Keystone's Raptor/Fuzion. The next level is Heartlands Cyclone and Crosslands Elevation. Then you go to the Dutchman Voltage, and Jayco's Seismic. Many will have QC issues...especially the Cyclone and Voltage simply because they are the most popular right now. It depends what you want.
Many are offering residential fridge (important if you are out for long periods of time). The Tesla even offers the residential fridge and dishwasher.

DRV, Excel, Evergreen Tesla, Forest River Vengeance, Heartland Cyclone, Keystone Raptor, and Crossroads Elevation mount their garage tie-downs to the frame and rated at 5,000 lbs or higher. The others are not...some are just mounted to the plywood floor.

As I said do your homework, DRV, Excel, and the Tesla has a full body double-welded frame for entire RV...not sure about Forest River, and most of the other do not. Some will have aluminum frame walls and galvanized roof trusses, and some will have aluminum/galvanized wall frame with wood trusses. RV's are an unregulated industry for the most part...but there are some quality toyhaulers out there...and there is some junk. Some of the junk will have a lot of nice accessories that you can see, but that's to hide the lack of quality everywhere else.
Lastly...buy from a good dealer that will let you live in it for a couple of days on the dealer property before you drive it off. That way you can go through all the electrical and plumbing systems and the dealer can fix any issue BEFORE you leave their lot. I lived in mine for 2 days...drove to work, went by the house, and then back to the RV and we had a few issues which were repaired before I drove it off the lot.

Good luck...and did I say...do your homework? meaning look at how the one you like is built. Insulation, floor, framing system for RV (welded/double welded), screwed, etc...cabinets (glued, screwed, or both), plumbing and electrical systems (big item)...look at these items in each toyhauler manufacturer, and then finally the Quality Control. I spent 6 months looking AFTER I first thought I found the one I wanted. I also haul a Harley Limited Ultra Glide.
I'm actually talking to our manufacturer about building more of a "full-time" toyhauler for us. Ours is nice, but really it's not meant to live in for 4-6 months at a time...a few weeks is ok, but we stay out for a while on most trips. None of the toyhauler's have enough of a living room area, but its what's important for you.
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Old 01-25-2015, 09:41 AM   #9
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Tesla is not in the same level even though they weld to the frame they have a sticker on the door that says garage Max is 3000lb not going to handle 2 Harley's. Nice fluff stuff like the MCD shades in them but they are not in the class of DRV or Excel or New Horizon. They are more on the line with Grand Design Momentum or below it. Good luck again research. Get the best axles brakes etc
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Old 01-25-2015, 10:19 PM   #10
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Cuttinchief...do your research, but I didn't say the Tesla was in the same class of a DRV, Excel, or New Horizon, but structurally they are very close. The body of the Tesla is all double welded aluminum like the DRV, Excel, and New Horizon...what the Tesla doesn't have is the extravgant finishes. Although the Tesla MEP's are also not up to the quality of the DRV, Excel, and New Horizon...they are much better than any other toy hauler in its class...and that included the Momentum, Cyclone, Voltage, Raptor, Spartan, and others...putting the Tesla above those.
And by the way...I have a 2014 Ultra Limited that I haul...and this past summer I took my bike and my cousin's 2008 Ultra Glide up to Moab Utah. So don't tell someone what they can't do...obviously you don't have a clue what your talking about.
With that said...the Tesla we have isn't really a full time RV...most toy haulers aren't including the Excel, DRV, and New Horizon with the floor plans they have. I'm talking to DRV now about designing one for us. I've talked to the other 2 and they want way too much $$$$$$. Evergreen hasn't gotten back with me yet, but they are thinking about taking their Bay Hill 369 design and adding a 8' garage to it or the Bay Hill 295 and adding a 11' garage. Either one would suit us for our bike..so we can stay out for 5-6 months at a time. I can tell all you want to know about every toy hauler made now...I've did over a year's research before I bought one. We go out for a month or more most of the time. I wasn't ready to spend $180k initially (for DRV, Excel, or New Horizon), but things change.
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Old 02-25-2015, 01:07 PM   #11
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IMO the best is the RAPTOR when it comes to the 5th wheel, good luck!!
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Old 02-27-2015, 09:00 PM   #12
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It all really depends on your budget and how often you plan on using it. Your best bet is to decide that first then go look at some different brands to see what they look like in person, what looks good on paper and online doesn't always look the same as in person.
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Old 05-15-2015, 09:41 PM   #13
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Take a look at the Keystone models. One of my concerns was securing my toys in the garage. Keystone welds there tie down brackets to the frame unlike may others that screw them into the wooden sub floor.
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Old 05-17-2015, 07:01 PM   #14
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I also spent a lot of time researching on my last two buys. I really liked what we had first, but it was a 2009 and it was not as well built as I would have liked. I went to a Forest River XLR Nitro. I'd have loved to go to the higher end stuff, but $$$ said no.

For the other stuff out there Forest River had what looked like less issues and complaints, better build, and I could get what I wanted in my budget. I looked at a Keystone Carbon as well, and while it had some nice cosmetic things compared to what I bought, it was poor quality and fit and finish in comparison.

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