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Old 08-29-2012, 12:04 PM   #1
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Class A to 5th Wheel

How many out there have gone from a Class A to a 5th wheel? What were your reasons? Was it a good move?

For you Class A advocates, what do you see as the downside?

The reason I ask is I have to get a new truck next year and if I was going to make the move, it would be good to start that consideration now. We aren't retired and nowhere near so as yet.

Are 5th wheels more for these heading south and full timing?

Your comments are well appreciated.
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Old 08-29-2012, 12:14 PM   #2
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For what it's worth we lived in and traveled in a 36 foot 5th wheel for over two years. We much prefer our motorhome. Seems to be a lot more basement storage and my wife doesn't have to wait for me to find a place to park so she can use the restroom or get snacks. Also with a motorhome we felt if we ended up at a location where we became uncomfortable in the middle of the night we could move on with out having to get out of the 5th wheel to go to the truck to drive away.
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Old 08-29-2012, 01:27 PM   #3
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My two cents worth

I have had both enjoyed both. I think a 5th wheel is great if your going to spend weeks, months at a time in one place. For traveling a Class A or class C is better for wandering around. I pulled a 32' and enjoyed living in it but pulling it not so much as I need a half acre to turn the thing and be constantly on the alert for over head hazards. Once parked it was nice to have the room and you can hardly beat the head room. With the Class A, I feel I can just wander around and park in lots of places that would be out of reach with the 5r, also it has a built in generator which makes for ease of use for on board electrical stuff like preparing lunch while traveling, not a big deal but it is a convenience.
I also like the "A" when I am traveling and it is potty time or I want a cold drink, make a sandwich or find a parking spot.
Wishing you happy trails what ever chose.
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Old 08-29-2012, 01:53 PM   #4
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The storage and ease of use while on route are some big pluses.
Are the 5th wheel heights a concern over Class A?
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Old 08-29-2012, 02:27 PM   #5
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TT, TT, MH, FW, MH.......had bad luck with first mh (bought new) so went to customized FL 4-door M2 & HR 36' FW, later down- sized in truck to custom Chevy one ton, then decided for DWs benefit to try MH again. The being able to cook, use restroom when desired, comfort, etc has made a lot of difference in her travel. When DW feels good.......well you know the rest. MH is certainly more $$ to upkeep and use but so far we are making it work.
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Old 08-29-2012, 03:05 PM   #6
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Had all types of RVs and we are back to a 5er. While the A has the advantages while traveling as for convenience, the 5er wins for living.

Only have the one drive train to maintain in the 5er and truck

I can get the truck worked on at any Ford dealer and lots of smaller shops.

If the engine/transmission/chassis breaks down, I can get it towed to a repair shop and the trailer to a campground, so we have a palce to live while it is being repaired.

Height is no higher than a big class A. we are 12'-11' at the high point and it can be lowered a few inches if I take off the MaxxAir covers.

No car to deal with and maintain in additon to the motorhome.

Initial cost is less.

Fuel economy is better.

Tires are less $$$$

Maintenance is less $$$$.

Truck is driven on a regular basis and I do not have to deal with driving the motorhome on a monthly basis.

So that is why a 5er fits my life better.

ken
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Old 08-29-2012, 04:04 PM   #7
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Cost is a big factor in the equation. A large diesel Class A unit is going to be a lot more expensive to own and operate than an equivalent HD diesel pickup/5th wheel combination, and even more so if you are running a second toad vehicle, which is just about mandatory. So I would first consider whether cost efficiency is an issue (for some it is and for some it isn't) and make that decision first. Once you determine you don't mind/can afford/or just want to afford the premium for a diesel Class A then you can move on to consider all the other pros and cons.
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Old 08-29-2012, 04:36 PM   #8
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My uncle, who is in his late 70's has had a 5th wheel for about 15 years. He has gotten tired of messing with the set-up and breakdown cause his body just doesn't work the same as it used to. He is talking about moving to a used Class A for that reason.

I have helped him set up on several occasions and he does struggle with the routine and often gets frustrated. Everyone is different. I also have a father in law who is turning 80 soon and he also has a 5th wheel and does just fine with it and uses it pretty often.

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Old 08-30-2012, 02:51 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dogpatch View Post
How many out there have gone from a Class A to a 5th wheel? What were your reasons? Was it a good move?

For you Class A advocates, what do you see as the downside?

The reason I ask is I have to get a new truck next year and if I was going to make the move, it would be good to start that consideration now. We aren't retired and nowhere near so as yet.

Are 5th wheels more for these heading south and full timing?

Your comments are well appreciated.
dogpatch-----I Kind of went the other way on this deal had a 40 ft Newmar MountainAire with a F450 4x4 dually all the years had 5th wheel trailers and huge TT but got tired of battling hookup and unhooking we go to Colorado ,Nevada,Utah,Idaho alot of the time in winters also if tired have to get out walk back rain or shine ,hail or snow and ice didnt want the wife to go threw that or me anymore but my class A gets just as good of fuel mileage as th F450 4x4 pulling the 40ft newmar 5th might of had something to do with it weighing 18,000 ibs out of the shoot plus tk weight so about the same for us in fuel mileage but we prefer big for the room people are different thats why they make 31 Flavors. Just was easier for us more relaxing we just pull the 93 Jeep Wrangler dont even know its back there. But dont get me wrong that Newmar was very comfortable once you were in it.
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Old 08-30-2012, 03:18 AM   #10
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I have only owned class A's. I can have lunch served while driving. I travel with DW and 4 kids and don't have to stop for potty breaks. (we would never get where we're going if I did) I can be set up in about 5 minutes.
On my last trip, a fiver was right behind us as pulled into the CG. I dropped levelers, put out slide, lowered awnings, pulled out carpet and chairs and sat under my awning enjoying a cocktail while I was watching the fiver still trying to back into his space. That was all the proof I needed.
If your the type to go to one spot and stay awhile, then a fiver can't be beat for space. If you only stay a few days before going to your next destination, a class A is the way to go.
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Old 08-30-2012, 03:28 AM   #11
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The old Class A vs 5RV debate is about like the gas vs diesel debate. You will get a wide varity of opinions. In the end it just depends on what works for you.
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Old 08-30-2012, 04:42 AM   #12
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We travel with friends who trailer while we have a 35' V10 Class A. They get 4 to 6 mpg with their setup while we get 8 to 9 mpg. When I want something from the fridge or freezer I just ask while they have to pull over. If someone has to use the bathroom well it is the first door on the right while they have to find a safe spot to pull over to do the same. Once we arrive at our destination within 5 minutes we are set up and supper will be on the stove. It will usually be ready to serve well before they are done unhitching and setting up. We end up with only one limited use item to store and maintain while they have two and one is a fuel guzzler that they have to deal with the rest of the year.

Just about any Ford dealer can work on the V10 so emergency servicing is not a problem.

Downside is that we end up making dinner for two families on arrival and have to wait a half hour or so for them when leaving. When we are taraveling since they need to pull off more often we end up wasting gas pulling off with them so we can stay together.
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Old 08-30-2012, 05:58 AM   #13
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A lot has to do with the setup.

I've achieved 8-9 mpg in a 32ft Class A with a V-10 and a toad that took 20 minutes to totally setup. This included disconnecting the toad. Toad got 32mpg.

I've also achieved 12-14 mpg in the Dodge 3500 towing the 5RV. With the help of hydraulic auto level, it took me the same 20 minutes to setup everything. Truck got 18-24 mpg when not towing.

Each has their advantages and disadvantages. With newer 5RVs, the setup is really easy and fast.

I love both types but with most likely get a Mobile Suites due to their build quality and higher insulated values. As for trouble parking a 5RV, sounds like someone needed to practice some.
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Old 08-30-2012, 09:21 AM   #14
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Fuel. That's another good reason for me not to opt for the change. If I stay with the Class A, my next truck will likely be the New Ford Lariat with the Eco Engine. If I changed, I'd be stuck driving a diesel at a higher year round cost for work.

In addition, I'd also have to park the 5th off site as it wouldn't fit in my yard and even if it did, I would have to back it up a really long steep driveway to put it beside my house. I would either have to pay storage or put it out at a friends acreage for the mice to live in.

I think I have my answer and that's what I like about this site. It lets you poll to make a decision you might later regret if you made the move on what you think alone.

Thanks to all replies!
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