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Old 02-09-2015, 10:46 AM   #1
King Clark's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Texas
Posts: 82
RV Show Dummies

Well my wife and I went the Houston RV Show to decide what size we felt would work for us. We toured TTs a couple of Cs then on to the A class. So we learned that we should have spent the last six to eight months at the gym working up to the fitness level required to climb the steps to so many units. We really have no clue as to how to open most cabinets and doors in an RV. Out of what seems to be a thousand units there is only one unit we really liked the floor plan on. We went back to that one four times so my wife could separate it from all the other units we looked at. Starting to get the drift why I think we should have worked up to this endeavor? Here it is Monday mid day and all my joints still hurt. Some of it I attribute to carrying all those gimme bags full of who knows what.
On the good side we met a couple that started with trailers and after numerous changes including four class A units and are now in a Zephyr. They told us the good and bad they experienced with units and towing vehicles. Met some good salesmen that were willing to tell us what we wanted to know knowing we are not buying for awhile and some that could not leave fast enough.
We also saw a bunch of newbies like us that we're pulling on sliding doors and could not find the latch to open others.
All in all it was a great day.

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Old 02-09-2015, 11:59 AM   #2
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Monaco Owners Club
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Location: Columbus, MS
Posts: 29,669
Good luck on finding the right rig for your needs!

Joe & Annette

2002 Monaco Windsor 40PBT, 2013 Honda CRV AWD
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Old 02-09-2015, 12:08 PM   #3
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Monaco Owners Club
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Location: Granbury, Texas
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Good luck on your search. We started with a used 26 foot travel trailer, 1 year later moved up to a 34' gas Class A, 2 years later moved up to 43' diesel Class A. Each had their charm, but we love the 43' diesel pusher!
Ronnie (WD5GIC) & Jan (WD5IHU)
2003 Monaco Dynasty Countess 42' w/tag, 2012 Ford Flex

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Old 02-09-2015, 12:18 PM   #4
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Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: NW Houston TX
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We had looked for 8 months before buying last week. We went to New Bransfels to see the only unit we havent seen yet in person that we were interested in. It just came back from a show and man was it beat up, knobs broken ink on leather, scratches etc. But we loved the floor plan. Ron Hoover in Houston got a new unit in, and it was exactly the coach we wanted, options, colors etc.,so we bought it before it went to the Houston show and before it had thousands of people poking at it. Those shows are overwhelming unless you have it narrowed down to a few units that you can go back and forth to compare while they are fresh in your mind. Cause if you don't you can't see them all without having a heart attack or 2 two days to recoup from all those stairs. Good luck in your search.
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Old 02-09-2015, 12:31 PM   #5
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Location: Spicewood Texas (West of Austin)
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Get on the individual owners forums of the manufacturers that interest you. Look at owner satisfaction as a whole, not just an occasional complaint. How was the delivery process, what kind of mistakes are making it all the way to the dealer, how do they respond to warranty issues, etc. After a while, you will get a feel of which companies are doing it right and the ones that are just in mass production mode.
Scotty and Kristen, Airedales Dagny and Wyatt
2007 Newmar Mountain Aire 4528, 450 HP ISM, Allison 4000, 8 Trojan T-105's
2014 F150 4x4 Crew Cab Platinum 157" WB
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Old 02-09-2015, 12:46 PM   #6
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Take notes next time. It will save a lot of back & forth. If you are in the Houston area visit PPL, a consignment lot. You can look at your leisure without a high pressure sales guy present.
2011 40' Monaco Cayman PBQ ISC 360
2013 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited
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Old 02-09-2015, 01:45 PM   #7
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We had not decided to go with a DP so wanted to look at enough stuff to start narrowing down the field and that required looking at a lot of different units. We thought we wanted a DP but did not want to just look at them as we wanted to be open to other types of RVs. Then it was to size but found some larger units had more room but not where we felt we needed it, we thought larger would be better and decided with the right floor plan smaller worked better for us. So for our first show we gathered the information we felt we needed. We are still six years out and intend to buy used so the unit we like should be available then at a price we would prefer. Payments were reasonable but we prefer to buy and not do payments if possible.
As far as salesmen go I do not worry about them, I let them know I am not buying now so you may want to assist someone else. I worked sales before including Mobil homes with a company that sends you to school for two weeks to teach you how to get every dime out of a customer, I had to name and show how twenty-one different closes work and why they work within two weeks of being on the sales floor. I did not stay there long as I did not like the way they treated customers. I feel for sales people but can pick the ones I want to deal with without feeling guilty about it.
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Old 02-09-2015, 04:09 PM   #8
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Well, no matter if you are buying new or used do not worry about opening cabinets and such... Save that for later.

Find a floor plan you really like,, For example, My wife insisted on a bath and a half (We had a single at home) and frankly.. I'm glad she did. As we move about water is not exactly the same, this leads to frequent flyer miles on the porcelain airlines. That 2nd hole meant no waiting.

Now, Once you settle on one, be it new or used, I you are buying from a dealer they do a Pre-Delivery-Inspection

Bring a video camera, and pack a lunch.. In fact would not be a bad idea to bring bedcloths and plan on an overnight (likely outside the dealer's gates).

They will show you how to open drawers, Cabinets and such, I they do not, ask them to show you if there are any tricks.

make sure they show you all the fuse blocks, all the switches and explain them, Have him point to the converter and film it (or inverter, or both). Show you the tank vavles, Show you EVERY aspect of that RV.

I will tell you trailers typically have one fuse block, often the breaker box is in the same place.. Motor homes have at least 2, mine has FOUR, and a couple of optional fuses in an alternate spot as well (3 but I installed those so I know where they are).

Make sure you see the fresh water fill, the wast drains, how to check the fresh tank, and the propane tank(s), and so on

IF the fridge is a Dometic, Make sure he puts the drip hose OUTSIDE so it drips on the ground (Does not apply to Norcold)

Print this post and take it with you.

But have them show you everything.. If it is a motor home include routine engine stuff like checking oil/fluid levels, Radiator level and such,, Where to add windshield washer fuild and i it has hydraulic jacks, Fluid for them (And what fluid) Get it all on video tape.
Home is where I park it!
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Old 02-09-2015, 04:55 PM   #9
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Posts: 626
Great advice wa8yxm!
Ken in Nebraska
98 Fleetwood Pace Arrow, 35U
97 Ford F53 chassis
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Old 02-09-2015, 05:22 PM   #10
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Tiffin Owners Club
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Location: California
Posts: 424
You are on your way to having a great time, just narrow down to size, engine, yes, which dealer,(very important), and how much you are willing to spend. Then hang out in the forums and read, read, read!

It took us two weeks for the first one (class c sprinter which we loved), then two years later we wanted more comforts and spent about 3 months looking. We knew we didn't want larger than 34 ft. Because of national campgrounds limits.

It's funny, we ended up with the same exact RV we had seen and loved from the beginning! Comforted that we had seen just about everything and finally was ready to buy. Don't let the dealers yank you around, offer them 24% lower than price and tell them to call you when they are ready to sell.

I think we ended up with -22% off. Good luck!

Dances with wolves
Linda and Bob.
2015 Allegro33aa.
480w Go Power solar
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