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Old 04-22-2014, 09:08 AM   #1
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Would like your opinions: new and used

Hello everyone,
I am a newbie getting ready to purchase our first TT. I have been looking for some time at different models and features. I have a line on a couple of units and would value some input.
The first unit is a used 2012 Kodiak 242resl. The unit seems in pretty good shape BUT, I did notice a camber issue on the rear axle that caused one of the tires to have all the tread worn of the inside. I pointed this out to the dealer, and they are going to replace one or both axles. It concerns me what may have happened that caused this, and are there hidden issues. While i was assured the trailer would have a thorough check out and all systems would work correctly, you never know. The trailer does come with a load equalizing hitch, 3 year good sam membership, etc.

The next unit is a new 2014 Jayco Jay Flight Swift Travel Trailer 248RBS. Pretty nice floor plan, similar weight. Aluminum instead of fiberglass. No load equalizing hitch. i would have to drive from Colorado to Indiana to pick up, so there is that aspect. However, the cost of trailer is only about $1260 more than the used unit. Obviously, there, i need to get the hitch and travel to pick it up, so there would be additional expenses, but it would have a factory warranty.

I'm really torn which way to go, and would value your opinions.
Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-22-2014, 11:03 AM   #2
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The axles on most light trailers will bend easily. Check the frame and hangers for any bend. I like the floorplan of the used one better.
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Old 04-22-2014, 08:24 PM   #3
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Axle sounds sketchy.
Good deal on new is always better than a bad deal on used.
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Old 04-22-2014, 09:30 PM   #4
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I actually prefer the floorplan of the new unit, much better storage, in my opinion. Are there local dealers to provide warranty service? You're looking at a small price difference for the new unit and the warranty. Since you're dealing with a dealer ask if they have a used load equalizing hitch laying around that they'll make you a deal on. The trip to get it is a factor you have to weigh in.
We bought a used tt, but we did have it looked at by a tt mechanic who had no connection to the dealership we were buying from. If the price difference had been that small I'd have gone for the new one and the warranty.
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Old 04-22-2014, 09:50 PM   #5
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From my experience always keep this in mind when dealing with most all travel trailers.
The frames, axles, tires, and suspension will almost always be taxed to the limit of their weight carrying capacity just loading the unit with the normal loads. So if and I mean if you accidentally hit a curb you will most likely bend an axle. If you try to carry 1/2 or better load of fresh water because you want to camp where no fresh water is available you may tax the plastic tank. With just 1/4 full when new our TT sagged 7".

If you read a lot of the forums you will find many postings concerning issues with tires, axles, and suspensions. Now some may tell you that only the complainers are posting their problems. There's probably some truth to that. After three TT's we decided to go back to a MH.

There are a lot of people pulling and enjoying TT's but there are some issues with them. Also there are some units out there that are built somewhat better than others but it's difficult to determine which ones.

Our last TT had a maximum capacity of 7,000 lbs. It came with two 3,000 lb axles so when loaded the suspension was 1,000 under the max. Yes the tongue carried probably 500 lbs so that only made it 500 lbs over capacity. That's building and traveling on the edge.

Best of luck on your search

TeJay
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Old 04-24-2014, 11:21 AM   #6
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I wonder why the last guy traded in a 2 year old unit? Could it have been because of the axels? Wonder what he bought after that?
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Old 04-24-2014, 11:28 AM   #7
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As for the floor plan; it's a personal preference. I like the rear bath models like the Jayco myself because they seem to open up the inside and make it seem roomier. To each his own.
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Old 04-24-2014, 01:24 PM   #8
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I looked at used and new TT's. I had a bucket list of things I wanted and for the most part used didn't have it. I wanted a power awning and basically only the newer TT's have that. I wanted LED lighting and many of the new TT's have that. I had converted my old trailer to LED's which isn't all that expensive but takes time to do. I wanted an oven and many only have a cook top. Power tongue jack was desired but that can be added to any trailer. Getting the right floor plan was essential and it is hard to find floor plans on older trailers. New trailer floor plans are in every advertisement. I was concerned about hidden water damage and although new trailers can have water leaks also the warranty will cover that cost at least for the 1st year and any leaks will not be catastrophic.
Granted initial value drops pretty rapidly as soon as you drive it off the lot.
Another issue with used is the cost of tire replacement, brakes, battery and other accessories functioning properly.
Just 2 of us so we weren't interested in a bunk model. A dealer told me that 80% of the trailers they sold were bunk models. For me that took a lot of looking to find a trailer without bunks.
Add everything together, awning, oven, LED's, tires, brakes, battery, and other little goodies you can add over $1,000 to an older unit and still have an older unit. It's kind of pay for it now for a little peace of mind or pay for it later.
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Old 04-25-2014, 11:44 AM   #9
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Great input. I'm still on the fence, and got sucked out of the country on business, so i haven't made a decision yet. My wife liked the floor plan of the used, other than wanting more storage. I will push the dealer with the yard unit to provide some sort of warranty for the repairs and maybe all the components they"verify". Their real good about saying they will take care of you, but unless it's in writing is not worth a thing. There are a few jayco dealers nearby, but now that would touch the price i was going to get. I guess i keep reading and fretting about it until i get home!
Keep the input coming. As newbie, it has been really enlightening. Great forum!!
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Old 04-25-2014, 08:39 PM   #10
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Trailers depreciate like cars, so I would expect 2 years old trailer to be 30-35% below selling price (not MSRP!!!!) especially with bent axle.Probably, previous owner hit a curb or a pothole at high speed.
On the other hand, if I had to sell my trailer now, it would not be too cheap either, given prefect condition and all the upgrades and improvements put in since I got it.
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Old 04-26-2014, 12:02 AM   #11
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Here's a little more information. A friend of mine who has been in this business for 20 plus years says that Jayco does build or has built a stronger TT frame.

If we didn't have a MH and were interested in a TT here's what I'd do. I'd measure the frame metal thickness of a bunch of TT's units/models etc. Once you have an idea who uses the thickest metal you'll have an idea who makes probably a stronger frame. Then find your floor plan and put axles that are at least 1,500 to 2,000 lbs heavier than the maximum you are to put on that frame. With the Axles you can put rims and tires that can also carry the weight.

Before someone tells me that putting a bigger axle under a frame does not mean that you can now carry more weight. I'm not recommending that. I'm just recommending that you put axles under your trailer so it can SAFELY CARRY the weight it was originally designed to carry. Instead of building the TT on the edge of destruction.

I did have the Dexter Tor-flex axles and do like them. Look them up on the net. They really are not that expensive either. They do not have springs but independent torsion axles. They also have self-adjusting brakes. I was going to install shocks on those axles but we traded it in for the MH.

With a thicker and stronger frame, heavier axles, tires and rims, shocks installed as well you will have eliminated most of the weaknesses inherent with TT's

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Old 05-05-2014, 08:23 PM   #12
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Have you gave Holiday Rambler a look? Iknow they quit making TT a few years back but they were the top of the line in TT . They hold up well and they hold their value better also. And you can still get parts from the factory. I have a 1992 Holiday Rambler Aluma Lite 32 footer. I needing some things I could not find in dealers catalogs so I called the factory and thay still carry a lot of parts for my camper. Ihave been told too many times that our camper looks as good if not better than a lot of newer ones. We went to a campgroung in the past that only allowed 2000 and up campers we got in even after we told them the year of it. So give Holiday Rambler a look also. Good luck and Happy Camping.
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Old 05-05-2014, 08:58 PM   #13
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TeJay, not a bad plan.
Look at my sig., I believe with the heavier axles, tires, ind. susp and disc brakes everything that rides on top endures only half the abuse and that forgotten bottle of cooking oil on the island might still be there when you arrive at your destination (really did happen).
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Old 05-05-2014, 11:15 PM   #14
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i got word today that the bent axle has been replaced, so i guess thats one less thing. Interesting that there are so many axle issues. It almost seems that even if i get a new tt i might have problems.
I did a search for holiday rambler and 2014 models are shown. I haven't found used ones, at least in my area, but will keep looking. I just returned from business overseas so i will get serious this week.
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