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Old 08-14-2014, 08:50 PM   #1
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Red face Hard Choices

Just wanted to ask a question... So some background is in order.

Ken and I are newbies and since beginning our search have learned so much and realized that our initial dream (of a class B) morphed into the longing for a class "A" then waddled on over to the "C", ping-ponged between "C" "A", no "A" "C" perhaps a Toyhauler then for fun I wanted to see what all the hype was about for those 5'ers. Perhaps I should have never stepped into one, cause now we also needed a heavy truck to pull something like that. We dropped the discussion for a little while and after the dust has settled we still want to change up trucks (currently have a 2006 Toyota Tundra) and get the 5'er and dually. Without going into the pros and cons, we are just feeling so much more comfortable with this set up opposed to others. In the end it is all a personal choice and comfort levels that steer us to one as opposed to another.

I am pining away for a certain truck and 5er, both used. We have been scrambling to see what we can realistically afford for these "toys" seeing we are not retiring for another 4 years. Until then, we plan to make good use of our "choices" on our annual family visits to Oklahoma and every long weekend we can manage here in Florida.

What was my question? Well, who here started "just looking" and found themselves very shortly with an RV parked in their driveway, and, anyone else out there start looking at one certain type and end up with something completely different? Just wondering if our learning curve is normal.

Thank you, kris (with a little help from Ken )
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Old 08-14-2014, 09:52 PM   #2
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Our "trip" to the current mh began in 1974 with a used 35 foot tt. Sold it and had a 5 year pause while having children and we bought a 1985 bunk house 28 foot tt. Sold it and came a 15 year pause while kids were leaving the nest and we were deciding what we were going to do for the next 30 years. I started hunting for a mh because we could not afford both a truck and a 5er. After 5 months of looking at junk and vehicles priced out of line, we found our 87 Fleetwood Southwind, 33 feet, and no slides to contend with. Invested about $12,000 to get it up and running and looking the way we wanted it to be in our image--personalization is expensive but very rewarding. And except for some rough spots on our maiden voyage--read as 4 breakdowns--we had a wonderful trip to Iowa and Montana and back and realized we had found our 30 year plan; travel extensively, come home 1 month out of every 4 and use the toad to explore all the surrounding areas where we are dry camped. We only use CGs when it is time to dump and take on water. We are currently moving into a 12X60 mobile home so our travel plans are on hold for the time being, but we should be up and running the middle of January and headed to Arizona to see our son and his family, then to Montana to see family, go to Iowa for the same purpose and then stop over in Illinois to see our youngest daughter, and then finally home, where we live next to our oldest daughter, roughly 5-6 months. So much to see and time, Lord willing, to do it in.

Sorry got a little side tracked.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:23 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shamrockken View Post
Just wanted to ask a question... So some background is in order.

Ken and I are newbies and since beginning our search have learned so much and realized that our initial dream (of a class B) morphed into the longing for a class "A" then waddled on over to the "C", ping-ponged between "C" "A", no "A" "C" perhaps a Toyhauler then for fun I wanted to see what all the hype was about for those 5'ers. Perhaps I should have never stepped into one, cause now we also needed a heavy truck to pull something like that. We dropped the discussion for a little while and after the dust has settled we still want to change up trucks (currently have a 2006 Toyota Tundra) and get the 5'er and dually. Without going into the pros and cons, we are just feeling so much more comfortable with this set up opposed to others. In the end it is all a personal choice and comfort levels that steer us to one as opposed to another.

I am pining away for a certain truck and 5er, both used. We have been scrambling to see what we can realistically afford for these "toys" seeing we are not retiring for another 4 years. Until then, we plan to make good use of our "choices" on our annual family visits to Oklahoma and every long weekend we can manage here in Florida.

What was my question? Well, who here started "just looking" and found themselves very shortly with an RV parked in their driveway, and, anyone else out there start looking at one certain type and end up with something completely different? Just wondering if our learning curve is normal.

Thank you, kris (with a little help from Ken )
Sounds like you guys have figured out the rig that suits you best! We became RVers completely by accident. One weekend, we were driving by an RV dealership and on a lark, stopped to look at entry-level travel trailers. We owned a 2008 Chevy Tahoe and figured there must be a TT that we could tow.

Not finding a trailer that made us want to buy, the next weekend we looked at Class Cs. Finally, we trooped through a few Class A's "just looking" and you know how that ended. After signing the paperwork to buy our Bounder, on the way home we realized we didn't even have a place to park it. Oops!

Two and a half years later, we have zero regrets. We are not retired either, but we have enjoyed having an RV for vacations and holiday trips.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:28 PM   #4
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We started looking at Class C's, fell in love with some 5ers but couldn't justify the truck to pull the one we wanted. Looked at Class A's and bought one.
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Old 08-15-2014, 05:59 AM   #5
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Great stories and we would love to hear more.

We feel somewhat justified going with a 5'er because the truck will be used daily for going to work (everybody needs a truck, right? ) We thought better a truck & 5'er than having a MH sitting for perhaps long periods of inactivity. My weekend is Sunday-Monday and Ken has the usual Saturday-Sunday. I only recently returned to work doing something I love (I was fortunate to have been able to retire at 52, for good behavior, lol ). I've made a commitment to my current colleagues to stay throughout spring of next year. Originally I thought to stick with this job until Ken retires, but the Saturday thing makes it hard on us. Will see.

We are not spending a fortune, truck is an '00 and 5'er an '07, but still a great deal of money for us. Actually it is partially our children's inheritance, please don't tell them . Ken is a hands on mechanical sort and I am good with a sewing machine. We are easy going and have no desire to keep up with the Joneses. I am so excited and looking forward to seeing where this all takes us.

Please share more, reminisce and allow us the pleasure of taking a peek into your past and hearing what it was like for you in the beginning.

Kris
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Old 08-15-2014, 07:38 AM   #6
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We use to camp in a pop-up and or tent for 15 years. Kids got older and school activities got in the way plus long hours at work so we just stop camping. The DW wanted to get back into camping/RVing; so she started to look at a Class A/Super C. I suggested since we would have too tow something behind them why not get a 5er and pick-up truck. This way we could use the truck when we needed to haul items for the yard and house plus have a tow vehicle.

Will we are on our second 5er now since 2008 and she has started to look at another 5er that she has her eye on. Once the bug bites it is hard to stop. Good luck and enjoy.

Jim W.
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Old 08-15-2014, 07:53 AM   #7
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Yep, been there' done that. I wasn't even looking for something new. Had a 73 Winnie that I played around with, hated to drive it, wandered all over the place, not to mention what big trucks passing did to it (23 ft). Was just passing by an RV place and saw this behemoth sitting on the lot and wanted to see the inside, had never even heard of a Newmar before. Well, long story short, I fell in love with the layout, came here and did research, went back 5 times just to walk thru, lay on bed, sat on coach, checked out basement storage, took Picts, finally talked to salesperson, checked dates on tires, drove it (much easier to drive than the Winnie), bought it, then decided to take early retirement and go fulltime. Have never regretted either action.

All the best on whatever you decide,
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Old 08-15-2014, 07:58 AM   #8
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Not trying to change your mind, but I went down the same road a few years ago. We started out with a popup, then two travel trailers and then decided on a 5th wheel. We found a really nice 32ft Jayco Designer and I bought a 1994 Chevy Crew Cab dually. I had the same mindset, I didn't want a motorhome just "sitting" and could not afford a dedicated vehicle for pulling, so we decided on the 5th wheel and dually and I'd commute in the dually. After about a year, I realized the gas in the dually was absolutely killing me, so I ended up buying a used compact car to drive to work. Then, we took two trips out west with the dually and 5th wheel. It was nice, but when we stopped for the night in a truck stop, no AC in the 5th wheel. Also, having to stop every hour or so for someone to go to the bathroom was a time killer. So, I sold the truck and 5th wheel, and for what I had invested in both of them, bought a really nice Holiday Rambler motorhome. I took, the DWs Caddy, sold my little compact car and bought her a Jeep Grand Cherokee. Now, we had a vehicle to pull (and drive when we reached our destination), had a view like no other going down the road, and the convenience of using the bathroom on the road and fixing a sandwich or drink, while riding in air conditioned comfort.

That said, I think a 5th wheel is great if you're going to a campground and going to spend a week, say at the lake. For weekend stuff, not so good (at least for me).
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Old 08-15-2014, 08:17 AM   #9
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It looks like a lot of us went through a similiar process. We started out tent camping, then bought a 12' BeeLine (circa 1964) camper, several years later traded for a 21' hybrid and several years later we retired, sold the hybrid (and the tow vehicle) before moving to FL because we didn't think we would want to camp anymore. After a year, started missing camping/traveling and started looking at small campers under 20'. As we looked, we kept looking at larger and larger trailers but didn't really want to invest in a huge TV because it would only be used when towing. Started looking at used class C's so we wouldn't need a TV. Looked at about a dozen C's and made an offer on one that the dealer refused. On the way home, happened to pass a small dealer out in the country that had a beautiful C on the lot. Stopped by, and looked at it a couple of others. The dealer (great guy) said why don't you look at this A; it is the same length (30') but has much more useable room and more storage. We looked, fell in love with it, but was over our budget. Started looking at A's at other dealers and made a deposit on one. The next day, the great guy dealer called and said he would price the first A we looked at to within our budget. Went back, inspected closely, was a great unit. Bought it. So glad we did; planning a trip to Grand Canyon in it now. Funny how things turn out.
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Old 08-15-2014, 08:42 AM   #10
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We never rved. Did a lot of tent camping with the Boy Scouts. Friends asked us to go camping with them at a local state park. They had a Minnie Winnie class c. Us in our tent. When I woke up in the morning kinda sticky and damp I looked over there was my buddy in his doorway sipping a mug of coffee. That was it. I told my wife if she wanted to camp we needed to get a camper. That led us to our first newmar Londonaire class c. After six years or so it was time for a change and thought we wanted a TT. We went to go buy a TT and ended up with a 5er. We already had a diesel pickup. We kept the 5er for four years and went to a PaceArrow class A gas. We kept that one for 12 years and we just purchased a older Country Coach Magna class a diesel pusher. We like the feel of the class A it seems the journey starts as soon as turn the key. As much as I love my truck it's just not as comfortable. Sightseeing in the wrangler is also much easier. Good luck what ever way you go.
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Old 08-15-2014, 09:05 AM   #11
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Hard Choices

Our story is similar to many here yet totally different. The commute is 60 miles door to door for work, no big deal. Until you factor the 2 1/2 hours it takes to go that 60. Unable to tolerate it any longer we looked at buying another home, No way was I paying half a mil for a house as old as me! I looked at studio apartments local to work, not on your life would I pay 2Gs a month for that!

So soon after we see a commercial on the tube for a big local rv sale, she wants to go look. As we've been campers for decades I agreed, my back can't tolerate the ground anymore anyway. Long story short we ended up buying a 37' DP for well under fair market with a lot of haggling. Now I spend half the cost of the studio for the rig & rent. After two years I think it's been fun and as a bonus we have an rv to go wherever.

That said we've been talking recently and really like the 5th wheel toy haulers. Don't have toys but the thought of the extra room in back with a patio is appealing to both of us. I also like the idea of a much less complex and less costly rig to deal with as well. Who knows if we'll go that route, just have to see what pans out.
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Old 08-15-2014, 09:22 AM   #12
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guess what, you are still not finished learning

Talk to us in a year and see if you don't have a different idea of what you want

That's why the mfg's come out with new product each year to PPPPPPPPPUUUUUUULLLLLLLLL us back in !!!!
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Old 08-15-2014, 09:23 AM   #13
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So many of us started out the same way...tents! I grew up tent camping then the family camped in a pop up for a few years. Long hiatus from camping anywhere but horse shows in an ancient Winnie Brave then no camping for years. When I finally convinced my new hubby that he really did want to camp, we bought a 22' B+ which was nice but with 2 adults and 2 boxers in it, it was cramped to say the least. Afterall, our pups must be comfortable, right?

We started researching Cs and were on a lot to look at a couple but the salesman side tracked us into a Class A and that was then end of looking for a C. We bought our first Class A 29' gasser and used it for 3.5 years before we went to an RV show which got us seriously thinking about a DP. Darn those RV shows!! The new owners drove our gasser ot it's new home and we now have a slightly larger (34') DP parked in our drive. We tow a Jeep Wrangler which we also use as a daily drive. It's much easier on gas than our F 250 Super Duty farm truck.

It's really nice to be able to pull into a rest stop and walk to the back to fix lunch or to take advantage of the bathroom. The large windshield provides great views of our beautiful country & the "cab area" becomes part of the living area when we're camped.

The good thing is that there so many choices of RVs that you will find something that is perfect for you!
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Old 08-15-2014, 01:57 PM   #14
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I did the tent thing once and was done. Then a few pop ups, on to a few travel trailers, a small 5er, and then into the motor homes. Four so far. Had a Class A and liked it, but DW wouldn't drive it. Just not comfortable. So I figured we would try a small Class B+. After two trips and trying to sleep on a couch, which she had to make up every day, it was on to the Class C we have now. I am looking to retire in a year or two as will DW at that time and then hope to use it more than we have anything we have had so far.

I think you guys are doing the right thing and getting what your comfortable with from the start. Good luck and happy camping....
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