Go Back   iRV2 Forums > iRV2.com COMMUNITY FORUMS > iRV2.com General Discussion
Click Here to Login
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
Reply
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on iRV2
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 01-29-2012, 08:59 AM   #1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 196
Newbie Fulltime Seeking Advice from the Wise

My wife and I are considering a 1 year full time road trip. Maybe more. It has been a goal of my wife. I love adventures so I am in. We currently have no RV experience. I have sailing experience. I understand many have advised to take baby steps, but I have also seen many that have jumped in and are having a great experience. I also have seen others that have waited and have never made their dream trip. We have no kids and 3 dogs and a cat. I have looked into DP and gas rigs. I wanted to ask the group for their advice on matters we should consider.

We want to have a smaller rig to allow more access to smaller spaces. (30 to 34ft).
We would greatly appreciate hearing about lessens learned and mistakes to avoid.

Thanks in advance.
__________________

__________________
Deas
Tiffin RED 34
deasnealy is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 RV Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

iRV2.com RV Community - Are you about to start a new improvement on your RV or need some help with some maintenance? Do you need advice on what products to buy? Or maybe you can give others some advice? No matter where you fit in you'll find that iRV2 is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with other RV owners, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create an RV blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 01-29-2012, 10:06 AM   #2
Moderator Emeritus
 
RickO's Avatar


 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Litchfield Park, Arizona
Posts: 10,530
We're one of those couples who "jumped in with both feet". Never owned any kind of RV when we purchased our brand new 40' diesel pusher and went full time... with our three dogs.

I learned 90% of what I need to know right here on the forum. A great place to get your RV education.

I understand your desire to stay with a smaller rig to get into places like state and local parks. Different folks have different needs but for us, we'd feel too confined considering the 3 dogs and and cat are sharing the space with us. Remember you'll be living in it.

We found that we wouldn't be without our toad... in spite of the expense to set one up.

We would buy used instead of new next time.

Diesel vs gas is always a controversial topic. IMO, unless you plan to spend a good amount of time out west in the mountains... or travel quite a lot... gas is the more financially sensible choice. But, buying a diesel "just because you WANT one" is a good rationale too.

Take your time on the road. We traveled >90% of the time with no reservations and never had a problem finding a place to stay. It took a while for us to get through our heads that we were LIVING on the road and not just on some road trip. Relax and don't think you have to see every single tourist attraction there is. Sit outside and read a book sometimes.

Best of luck to you both.

Rick
__________________

__________________
Rick, Nancy, Peanut & Lola our Westie Dogs & Bailey the Sheltie.

2007 Itasca Ellipse 40FD
RickO is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-29-2012, 11:18 AM   #3
Member
 
Laker17's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: CT
Posts: 32
My DW and I decided to take a baby step so we started out with a new 18 ft teardrop camper. We had a ball. Yes, we dealt with tight quarters, but we did not have to deal with any problems that might have come about with an older unit and it just worked. We learned a great deal and had few, if any frustrating moments because everything was so simple with the small unit. We had a great season and we were hooked on RVing (our dogs were too).

Ten months later, we traded it in for a 33ft 5th wheel and a 1 ton pickup. That was the extent of our baby steps. It worked for us and the transition to the larger vehicle was easy. Having said that, I had the advantage of driving farm tractors and box trucks, as a teen, then later on 17 ton (+/-) fire engines, so handling large, heavy vehicles was not foreign to me. I was also an electrician for 20 years which translates to having the ability to diagnose and repair various issues that will most certainly arise (of course, having confidence in ones abilities is just as important in knowing your limitations).

Now initially, we had set our sights on a motor home but after going to shows, and then spending a season with the teardrop, we decided that the 5th wheel was what we wanted and we are vey happy with our decision. That was our path to learning if RVing was for us; a short but enjoyable journey. I would think that if RVing is something that you are excited about then you will probably be up for the challenge of learning to drive one. You might want to try renting an RV for a week or so and take it to a few different campgrounds to get the feel for how it handles, backing up and so on.

Well good luck to you and enjoy the ride.

Laker17

BTW... I've also sailed... owned several sailboats. When it comes to sailing, there is a lot to learn and a lot of what you learn from your experiences, will make you a better person (and RVer).
__________________
'02 Carriage Carri Lite 32RS3
'06 Dodge 3500 DRW
Laker17 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-29-2012, 11:49 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
Wanabee FTer's Avatar
 
Gulf Streamers Club
Ford Super Duty Owner
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Golden Village Palms, CA
Posts: 1,988
Blog Entries: 12
Started full time last year. Bought used gas because I am familiar with maintenance and repairs and did not want to finance our first rig. I don't know anything about diesels and they seem intimidating to me. Our first rig is comfortable, reliable and large enough at 32'. Agree with RickO, a toad is a must.

Regrets... a few but minor.
Should have learned more from forums like this before buying. I would have bought a '99 or newer Ford chassis with 2 slides if I had done a little more homework. They have a larger GVWR and it would be nice to have a bedroom slide for additional space in rear of motor home.

Of course if money is no object, get a quad slide diesel. You will have little issues with space or weight limitations if you go that route.
__________________
John
'98 Gulf Stream Sunsport 325, 7.5L Banks Power Pack, Koni FSD's, Air Bags, ReadyBrute Elite,
2000 Honda Accord

Wanabee FTer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-29-2012, 06:11 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
historyljc's Avatar
 
Tiffin Owners Club
Freightliner Owners Club
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Pensacola, Florida
Posts: 5,173
Like Rick, our first (and current) rig is a 40' DP. We don't full time but have taken some very long trips in it. We have never found that the 40' length to be particularly limiting in finding a place to stay. Most of the places it won't fit we don't want to stay in anyway. You main search is for a floor plan that will fit your particular needs and is comfortable to you. I'd look at a lot of them before making a final decision. Good luck on your search.
__________________
Travel well, travel safe,
Jim
2006 Tiffin Phaeton - 2011 Cadillac SRX
historyljc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-29-2012, 06:29 PM   #6
Moderator Emeritus
 
Gary RVRoamer's Avatar


 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Silver Springs, FL. USA
Posts: 18,062
Do your first year in a 34-36 foot gas chassis coach, of whatever floor plan suits your fancy. Buy a used one, maybe 5 years old, to avoid the early depreciation loss. I can pretty much guarantee you are going to want to continue fulltiming for at least a couple years more, so you can trade for what really suits you after you get your first year of experience under your belt.

I say this because you can't really know in advance what is going to be most important to you. Living in a small space means an adjustment in lifestyle, as does continuous traveling, new friends and new places.

In the meantime, look at as many different RV styles and floor plans as you can, until you build some kind of consensus between you two as to what will make life good for you. Stand in the showers, sit on the commodes, pretend you are storing your gear away in galley, bedroom and storage bays, sit and watch tv for awhile, set out the computer, read a book - whatever your normal activities may be. Do your best to imagine living in it for months on end. Then start making 3 lists: MUST Have, NICE to Have, and NO-GO. Must Have means just that - will not buy a rig that does not have all the items on that list. Nice to Have is desirable things that don't quite make the Must have list, i.e. they are negotiable. Finally, No-Go are the show stoppers - you will not buy a rig if it has something that's on that list. It may be an empty list, but I'm betting you will find some things that you really don't like. Putting them on the list helps you avoid buying an otherwise desirable rig that has some feature that will irritate you after the bloom is off the rose.
__________________
Gary Brinck
Former owner of 2004 American Tradition
Home is in the Ocala Nat'l Forest near Ocala, FL
Summers in Black Mountain, NC
Gary RVRoamer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-31-2012, 05:53 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
VSPA's Avatar
 
Winnebago Owners Club
Ford Super Duty Owner
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Humble/Atascocita, Texas
Posts: 1,227
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary RVRoamer View Post
Do your first year in a 34-36 foot gas chassis coach, of whatever floor plan suits your fancy. Buy a used one, maybe 5 years old, to avoid the early depreciation loss....
There's a lot of good advice given in the above posts and GaryRV puts a lot of it togather in one. I'd stay in the 29-31 foot range with at least one slide as a starter. I wouldn't reccomend one as small as the one pictured below, a 23 ft Toyato Dolphin, but DW and I spent three years full time in it while I was stationed in Phoenix, AZ. I did have extra storage in that I found a trashed out 12 ft Scottie travel trailer gutted and refurbished and converted into a walk-in closet for DW that I parked behind it.



The living area, not including the bath or the cab over bed was about 14 by 6 ft 2 inches. It did have A/C and a small generator with enough output to power tha A/C
__________________
Stan, Shirley & 2 Schnauzers (Sandy & Sassy)
RV: 2014 Itasca Sunstar 35F
USAF, Retired, Life Member: DAV, VFW, VVA, & VSPA
VSPA is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-18-2017, 07:36 AM   #8
Junior Member
 
JBMahan's Avatar
 
Mid Atlantic Campers
Forest River Owners Club
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 20
I have had 5 (yes 5) including my present 5th wheel. I pull it with a Ram 3500 dually and still I feel like a mouse pulling an elephant. Going to trade it in on a Class B. The worst was the Tiffin (11 check engine lights, 4 stop engine lights, refrigerator only worked when gen was running, automatic leveling jacks wouldn't come up at Disney world, and finally coming home the back up camera failed and the only way to make sure that jeep was still with me was to look out mirror and look for shadow of jeep) My advise (which means nothing) is to read irv2.com back to front and then ask full timers who know a lot. We had a couple from our RV group who went full time. He said he got extended warranty and they have had their new Journey in 3 times already at a cost of $50. I spend $11,500 in 3 months getting Tiffin fixed. NOT A HAPPY CAMPER.
__________________
Mike Mahan, USAF, Ret
2016 Coachman Chaparral; 2010 Dodge Ram 3500
JBMahan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-18-2017, 11:08 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
puttin's Avatar
 
Winnebago Owners Club
Ford Super Duty Owner
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 1,284
deasnealy,

Welcome to the community! There will be lots of suggestions and opinions- mine is that you should buy a gas coach. Much cheaper and more enjoyable to own...read that as less trouble. I have friends who own diesels and love them but they spend lots to keep them in shape and maintained (boy, I sure don't want to get flamed here). When we got our first rv it was a 24' class c and I knew almost nothing except that we wanted a certain size...just like what you mentioned. Back then, not many people used the internet and fewer had computers so we bought ours from a newspaper classified. We never looked back. That was only two coaches ago and we are still happily rv'ing every few weeks or so at one of our favorite spots. Try to focus on a floor plan that works well for you. Later on, we decided a king bed was a must as well as an enclosed bathroom (as opposed to a split bath). These were personal choices but you get the idea. Get an rv from a reputable manufacturer - so stay away from Forest River and Thor...just my opinion but you'll see lots in these forums about issues with both...as well as constant recalls. Have fun and check back often- you're making a fun decision in life's journey!
__________________

__________________
puttin is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Seeking advice on handling cwfr_001 Class A Motorhome Discussions 61 09-22-2011 05:25 PM
Newbie advice with purchase. Valoni Class A Motorhome Discussions 9 04-28-2011 05:45 PM
newbie needs advice lancelotlink Gulf Stream Owner's Forum 5 09-19-2009 04:14 AM
Seeking advice on repair of sidewall to roof seams Caulk or Eternabond LK23 Winnebago Industries Owner's Forum 19 02-25-2008 07:37 PM

» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:25 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.