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Old 02-13-2016, 04:38 PM   #1
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Gas or Diesel

Why did you choose either?

Ok I will start this out as it seems the sooner you say something about gas people turn it into a contest. So here goes.

Having been involved in the trucking industry and being a mechanic with enough rebuilds of Diesel engines and lots of gas engines. I bought a gas motor home. Why because after 40 years of maintaining all the units I have ever owned it is no secret how difficult it is to work on a Diesel pusher. In my 60's I see nothing but cursing skinned knuckles and cramped areas to get into.
Don't get me wrong I love diesel but hate somebody working on my rig.
So I bought a gasser and will continue to until the industry smartens up and gets it right.
Ever wonder why a lot of places will not work on motor homes?
It is not about money as a matter of fact we are looking at a new unit this year.
Gas you bet.
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Old 02-13-2016, 04:55 PM   #2
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I had the same career as you and made the same decision.

I picked up a E450 Class C. All of the parts are cheap and avalable everywhere.

As long as I can get it to a family or friends house, I can slip a rebuilt engine in for less then some diesel turbo work.

It fits my budget, even if I have to pay for major repairs, on the road.

My primary home is a diesel powered boat. Keeping some cash around for that, if it goes.
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Old 02-13-2016, 05:11 PM   #3
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I've rebuilt a 6-354 Perkins, and a 5.9 Cummins with my oldest son, along with a number of gasoline engines. These were mine and his and like you I don't like others working on my vehicles, although I've never been a professional mechanic unless you count 4 years in the Navy working on aircraft engines and 5 as a paper mill millwright. Both my TCs prior to getting the Flair were diesel powered, one Perkins and one Cummins and I too would prefer diesel.

I've never had a DP, but I'm considering one if the new to us '93 454 powered 26' Flair doesn't work out on our 8k mile trip this Summer.

Back to the gas-diesel thing. I just finished replacing the radiator in the Flair and working on it was so bad I decided to replace the water pump, fan clutch, and all belts and hoses just to reduce the likelihood that I would have to go back in there again. If I had a DP I would work on it too. Are they really that much worse than the Flair?

Thanks.

Steve
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Old 02-13-2016, 05:13 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dix39 View Post
I've rebuilt a 6-354 Perkins, and a 5.9 Cummins with my oldest son, along with a number of gasoline engines. These were mine and his and like you I don't like others working on my vehicles, although I've never been a professional mechanic unless you count 4 years in the Navy working on aircraft engines and 5 as a paper mill millwright.
Both my TCs were diesel powered, one Perkins and one Cummins and I too would prefer diesel.

I've never had a DP, but I'm considering one if the new to us '93 454 powered 26' Flair doesn't work out on our 8k mile trip this Summer.

Back to the gas-diesel thing. I just finished replacing the radiator in the Flair and working on it was so bad I decided to replace the water pump, fan clutch, and all belts and hoses just to reduce the likelihood that I would have to go back in there again. If I had a DP I would work on it too. Are they really that much worse than the Flair?

Thanks.

Steve
Steve don't put yourself down,you are a mechanic!
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Old 02-13-2016, 05:19 PM   #5
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Well........thanks!

Are those DPs really that difficult to work on? If we got one it would probably be no longer than 30' and preferably 5.9 Cummins and Allison 6 speed from the mid '90s

Twinboat, this probably isn't the place to do it, but what is the diesel powered boat you have and where will you use it? I used to have thoughts about a nice diesel powered trawler hull for the ocean, but that was a few years ago. We did go the ocean a lot in the '80s and '90s with a 22' gas powered Reinell cabin boat. Just thinking about it, that thing was no fun to work on either.


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Old 02-13-2016, 05:34 PM   #6
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FWIW As I understand it most DP's are accessed by removing the bed and going through the bedroom floor. That means all the people, stuff and parts involved go the length of the MH inside to get to where they are working. That thought alone gives me the shivers when I see some of the deluxe interiors involved.
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Old 02-13-2016, 05:44 PM   #7
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I have been shopping for a motorhome for full-time retirement traveling. I was set to buy a new gas coach, then people were telling me that for traveling year-round, I would be so much happier in many ways with a diesel. Also a big factor was that a gas coach chassis cannot support a motorcycle lift at the rear. So I made a final decision to go diesel. I guess the most important factor is where you are getting the coach for weekend camping or full-timing.
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Old 02-13-2016, 05:45 PM   #8
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Well........thanks!

Are those DPs really that difficult to work on? If we got one it would probably be no longer than 30' and preferably 5.9 Cummins and Allison 6 speed from the mid '90s

Twinboat, this probably isn't the place to do it, but what is the diesel powered boat you have and where will you use it? I used to have thoughts about a nice diesel powered trawler hull for the ocean, but that was a few years ago. We did go the ocean a lot in the '80s and '90s with a 22' gas powered Reinell cabin boat. Just thinking about it, that thing was no fun to work on either.


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Single, Volvo Penta 165, in a 1984, 35 FT Rosborough, Atlantic Trawler.
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Old 02-13-2016, 06:48 PM   #9
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Gas works and so does Diesel. Do what you want, nobody really cares. Have fun.
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Old 02-13-2016, 07:05 PM   #10
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Just out of curiosity, what work would you be doing on a gas unit that you would not , or could not, do on a diesel?
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Old 02-13-2016, 07:21 PM   #11
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That was one of the deciding factors that steered me toward getting a 5th wheel and diesel truck to pull it vs a motorhome. I can do most routine repairs and maintenance on the truck (and 5th wheel also), have the RV room I need, have the extra diesel power to pull steep grades and still be able to get 11-13 mpg while towing. My modest budget doesn't allow for a new rig, especially a MH so I have to "make do" with limited funds. So far, it's taken us all over the country for over 5 years now, without any incidents.
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Old 02-13-2016, 08:33 PM   #12
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Gas here too. If a diesel breaks it gets extremely expensive very quickly. Not that gas repairs are cheap, but there is just no comparison. I was looking to buy a used coach in the 8 to 10 yr old area. I feel a lot more comfortable with gas. I've seen way too many diesel nightmares before retiring. Gas serves us fine as we are basically weekenders with an occasional week long or so trip. If we were putting a lot of miles on i would consider diesel. It's just not needed now and I don't want to take a chance on expensive repairs.
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Old 02-14-2016, 12:19 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by Selah View Post
Just out of curiosity, what work would you be doing on a gas unit that you would not , or could not, do on a diesel?
My question, if that was the reference, was more about the difficulty of working on a DP as compared with other RVs and in particular our class A gas puller. IMHO, it's good to learn about this before getting one if you are going to be doing the maintenance.
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East coast ICW, VT. to the FL. Keys, since 2008.

Single, Volvo Penta 165, in a 1984, 35 FT Rosborough, Atlantic Trawler.



Sounds like fun, thanks. I had no idea the ICW was that big. Ha, after looking it up on the computer I learned that I really had no idea what the ICW even was. It's huge!


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Old 02-14-2016, 12:46 AM   #14
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Just out of curiosity, what work would you be doing on a gas unit that you ...., ... could not, do on a diesel?
Change the spark plugs.

Part of the issue with diesels is the accessibility factor, but the big issue is just how big and heavy everything is compared to a gas motor. I'm not a big guy but I have no issues pulling heads off of a gas V8 and carrying them to the workbench. That's simply not something I can do on the 8.3l diesel in my RV. That head would take me longer to get off and require larger and heavier equipment to remove and re install.
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