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Old 03-10-2010, 10:24 PM   #1
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Hi,

We are a young family of 4 interested in purchasing an RV (this month) and going on a cross country trip in August. We are planning to vist 46 of the 50 states on our first trip. We joined this site because we are having trouble deciding on an RV and wanted to learn about other peoples experiences. We are afraid of purchasing a motorhome and having it break down while we are on the road. We realize there will be some trouble along the way, however minimal issues are one thing and being stranded is another. We plan to be gone for 3 or 4 months. We are looking for feedback on everyones RV's. We are deciding between a large Class C or a small Class A. We want to spend $100,000 or less, and we are looking for a used RV. We have looked at this Jayco Seneca 35 that looks absolutely stunning, but aren't sure on the reliability. That is actually how I found this website. We were doing a search on Jayco's reliability. We are also looking at a Tiffin Allegro 34. We really like the Fleetwood Tioga 31M. So we are all over the place. Any feedback would be very much appreciated! We went to the dealership, and after they were done licking their chops we were disgusted and just wanted to go home. They all looked starved...
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Old 03-10-2010, 10:42 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by RVingforus View Post
Hi,

We are a young family of 4 interested in purchasing an RV (this month) and going on a cross country trip in August. We are planning to vist 46 of the 50 states on our first trip. We joined this site because we are having trouble deciding on an RV and wanted to learn about other peoples experiences. We are afraid of purchasing a motorhome and having it break down while we are on the road. We realize there will be some trouble along the way, however minimal issues are one thing and being stranded is another. We plan to be gone for 3 or 4 months. We are looking for feedback on everyones RV's. We are deciding between a large Class C or a small Class A. We want to spend $100,000 or less, and we are looking for a used RV. We have looked at this Jayco Seneca 35 that looks absolutely stunning, but aren't sure on the reliability. That is actually how I found this website. We were doing a search on Jayco's reliability. We are also looking at a Tiffin Allegro 34. We really like the Fleetwood Tioga 31M. So we are all over the place. Any feedback would be very much appreciated! We went to the dealership, and after they were done licking their chops we were disgusted and just wanted to go home. They all looked starved...
we bought our motorhome from craig's list after becoming disgusted with inflated dealer price. ours had only 4,000 miles and still had several years of warranty left. we picked out 5 from craig's in our area and checked out each one, chosing one from this group of motorhomes with the features we liked. 46 states in 3-4 months is very impressive, you all should (i'm from the south)be worn out when you get back...good luck on your search and your travels
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Old 03-10-2010, 11:33 PM   #3
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First, welcome to iRV2. We are glad to have you here & you will get a lot of input from our members.

For us to be able to give you ideas, we'll need to know a bit more about your family.

*May we assume your children are too young for school since you are starting your 3-4 month trek in August?
*Do you have pets?
*Do you want to have a bunk area for children, will the sleeping area over the cab of a Class C be enough, or will pull out couches/fold down dinette work?
*Do you have a lot of toys (bikes, atv's) you'll need storage for?
*Are you looking for a gas or diesel RV?
*Are you planning on towing a vehicle behind your motorhome? What size vehicle fits your family?
*Have you thought of renting a Class C & a Class A for a couple weekend trips? Better spend a smaller amount of money early to figure out which class fits your needs than to have buyer's remorse after you've bought a motorhome that you thought would work for you but doesn't.
*Is someone in your family even minorly mechanically inclined to do repairs or will you completely rely on a repair dealership when issues arise?

I've just scratched the surface here, but with some more information from you, our members will be able to give you ideas & help you navigate the maze of possibilities so you can come to a decision that is right for you & your family.

Lori-
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Old 03-11-2010, 12:39 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by NLOVNIT View Post
First, welcome to iRV2. We are glad to have you here & you will get a lot of input from our members.

For us to be able to give you ideas, we'll need to know a bit more about your family.

*May we assume your children are too young for school since you are starting your 3-4 month trek in August?
*Do you have pets?
*Do you want to have a bunk area for children, will the sleeping area over the cab of a Class C be enough, or will pull out couches/fold down dinette work?
*Do you have a lot of toys (bikes, atv's) you'll need storage for?
*Are you looking for a gas or diesel RV?
*Are you planning on towing a vehicle behind your motorhome? What size vehicle fits your family?
*Have you thought of renting a Class C & a Class A for a couple weekend trips? Better spend a smaller amount of money early to figure out which class fits your needs than to have buyer's remorse after you've bought a motorhome that you thought would work for you but doesn't.
*Is someone in your family even minorly mechanically inclined to do repairs or will you completely rely on a repair dealership when issues arise?

I've just scratched the surface here, but with some more information from you, our members will be able to give you ideas & help you navigate the maze of possibilities so you can come to a decision that is right for you & your family.

Lori-
Hi Lori,

We homeschool our eldest son who is 9 years old. Our youngest just turned 1. We were motivated to take this trip in order to educate him on our country's history. We have 2 large dogs (English Mastiffs 250lbs each) who will be coming along with us on our trip. Our 9 year old loves those top bunking areas, that was one of the draws for him and us to the Fleetwood Tioga 31M. We also noticed it in the Jayco Seneca we are looking at; however it is not a necessity. The sofa beds are just fine too!
We are not going to bring a lot of toys with us on this trip. No bikes, it seems like a pain in the neck to load and unload at each stop. We are planning so many stops that we feel we will be getting plenty of exercise while walking the dogs.

We don't have a preference on Gas or Diesel. Just as long as it is quiet and smooth. We will not be towing a vehicle. I understand that it can make the trip more enjoyable but we don't want the added trouble.

My husband used to take old cars apart and put them back together. He is very handy and can take care of little things. We are concerned about warranty's. I have been reading that Tiffin has really great customer service. Still trying to do research on Jayco. The Seneca looks so nice! But how is the quality? Do you know by any chance?

Thanks
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:30 PM   #5
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That info should be a great help to our members. Hang tight & there should be members checking in with ideas for you. Boy those dogs are big 'uns so you will need more room than an average family of 4, I'd think.

Unfortunately I don't have unfo on Jayco's Seneca. Jayco, as a mfr, has an excellent reputation for quality and service on it's TT's & 5-r's but I don't know anything about their motorized RV's. I would suggest you do a search for Jayco Seneca using the Search tab in the teal bar at the top of the page. That should bring up some threads you can gain info from.

Lori-
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:46 PM   #6
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Hello. While I don't have any info. on MH from any manufacturer I do have experience with fleetwood customer service and their products in both the pop up and the tt. I will not buy another fleetwood product. While they talk a big talk when I got their product I found many small items on both units. Not huge but annoying. And finally with my TT the roof started leaking and the dealer said it wasn't the mfg. problem but mine for lack of service. It was only 5 years old. I never had any other problems with it. Jayco has an excellent reputation and Tiffin does as well. I also spent 6 months out of the year travelling with my family full time for 4 years. If you have any questions on the travelling part etc.. drop me a line. Most of my travelling was the Eastern Seaboard from New Brunswick to Key West. We had a blast!!! If I could afford to do it again I definitely would. Good luck and have fun!!
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:58 PM   #7
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Hi RVingforus;

You describe such a fun trip that your oldest child will have many happy memories from. So nice to read posts like this. I wish you safe and happy travels.
As far as the Seneca... I though they looked great too. I rented one just before I bought my fleetwood providence to convince myself I didn't want a class c. It turned out to be the best thing I could have done.... It was an 07 with 15,000 miles on it and it was one big weak rattle trap. I know that is not the case with all of them.... but I just did not like the class c experience. I really think with your budget you should look at a class a diesel pusher or puller. I am new too and I really love the smooth ride of the diesel class a, and because the engine is in the back on mine the rig is very quiet to drive.
Also, I bought mine on eBay. I spent about half more than what you're talking about and I didn't think twice about spending that kind of money on eBay. They really do have strong buyer protections in place. And most of the dealers are very reputable and more than happy to talk to you on the phone... ask as many questions as you want, they want to sell them. Don't want to ramble any more but I'll be glad to answer any questions you might have about my experience... just email me here.... or ask in the forum.
Do like we did, enjoy the searching/purchasing as much as you can. It really can be fun and exciting.
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Old 03-11-2010, 07:08 PM   #8
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Now that's going to be an adventure!

With two kids and those 'horses' you'll be travelling with, I'd recommend as large a rig as you feel you'd be comfortible chaufering around. I'd also like you to reconsider your decision not to pull a 'dingy'. Keep in mind that all your touring, be it museums, librarys, national or state parks, you'll be driving your motor home everywhere. Firstly, the MH is not going to physically be able to access everywhere you're going to want to go. For the next few weeks, everywhere you go, imagine driving a 34' motor home there. Second, everytime you take a field trip, or just a trip to the grocery store, or to take the family to a movie, you'll have to break camp, and then set up again when you get back.

There are a few manufacturers of class A motor homes installing bunk beds now. Tiffin is one of them. We have a 34' Tiffin and while I won't say it's been totally trouble free, the dealer and factory support have been unparalleled. I'd think one of these bunk models would be great for your family. I don't know of any built with 500 lbs of dog in mind!
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Old 03-11-2010, 07:12 PM   #9
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... I'd also like you to reconsider your decision not to pull a 'dingy'. Keep in mind that all your touring, be it museums, librarys, national or state parks, you'll be driving your motor home everywhere.
If I may suggest, you can always rent a vehicle when you arrive at your destination. I know of RV-r's that use Enterprise (if available in their area) because they deliver.

Lori-
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Old 03-11-2010, 07:17 PM   #10
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RVingforus,

Great to hear of your upcoming adventure. We started when our oldest was 9 and he will turn 21 in two weeks and still wants to come on our trips (with girlfriends and buddies too).

Another family on the forum is currently doing a 6 month trip with their family (the Robsons) so you should do a search and read some of their posts as they got ready. You'll see one post where I gave them the top 10 list of places to see as suggested by each of my three boys.

Of our 3 motorhomes, 2 were brand new 'Leftovers' that were heavily discounted as they were last year's model. That might be a route to investigate. With those big dogs, you should probably try to get as big a model as you can afford.

Speaking of the dogs, realize that some campgrounds have pet restrictions on breed, size, number, etc. so call ahead or look in a campground directory.

Your 9 year old will have a great time and your poor 1 year old won't remember a thing. But you'll have plenty of pictures to show the baby in later years.

As always, keep asking questions.
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Old 03-11-2010, 07:40 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by RVingforus View Post
Hi,

We are a young family of 4 interested in purchasing an RV (this month) and going on a cross country trip in August. We are planning to vist 46 of the 50 states on our first trip. We joined this site because we are having trouble deciding on an RV and wanted to learn about other peoples experiences. We are afraid of purchasing a motorhome and having it break down while we are on the road. We realize there will be some trouble along the way, however minimal issues are one thing and being stranded is another. We plan to be gone for 3 or 4 months. We are looking for feedback on everyones RV's. We are deciding between a large Class C or a small Class A. We want to spend $100,000 or less, and we are looking for a used RV. We have looked at this Jayco Seneca 35 that looks absolutely stunning, but aren't sure on the reliability. That is actually how I found this website. We were doing a search on Jayco's reliability. We are also looking at a Tiffin Allegro 34. We really like the Fleetwood Tioga 31M. So we are all over the place. Any feedback would be very much appreciated! We went to the dealership, and after they were done licking their chops we were disgusted and just wanted to go home. They all looked starved...
I was trying to comprehend the logistics of such a trip, so I did a little math.
Four months is about 120 days. If you plan on going to 46 of the 50 states that is 2.6 days per state. To accomplish this I recommend that you get an RV that is rocket propelled and take a camera along so that you can record the sites as you whiz by.☺
Having taken similar length trips in the past and never staying in any place for more than 4 or 5 days we could usually cover about 5 or 6 states and actually remember where we had been.
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Old 03-11-2010, 07:59 PM   #12
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We have done 16 states and 2 Canadian provinces in about 3.5 weeks so 42 states in 16 weeks is very doable. Unless you're studying the Revolutionary War or Toxic waste sites, my home state on NJ is a drive through (of course with paying your highway tolls, thank you very much). Our state motto is 'Welcome to NJ. Now go home.'
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Old 03-11-2010, 09:30 PM   #13
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hi lori,

we homeschool our eldest son who is 9 years old. Our youngest just turned 1. We were motivated to take this trip in order to educate him on our country's history. We have 2 large dogs (english mastiffs 250lbs each) who will be coming along with us on our trip. Our 9 year old loves those top bunking areas, that was one of the draws for him and us to the fleetwood tioga 31m. We also noticed it in the jayco seneca we are looking at; however it is not a necessity. The sofa beds are just fine too!
We are not going to bring a lot of toys with us on this trip. No bikes, it seems like a pain in the neck to load and unload at each stop. We are planning so many stops that we feel we will be getting plenty of exercise while walking the dogs.

We don't have a preference on gas or diesel. Just as long as it is quiet and smooth. We will not be towing a vehicle. I understand that it can make the trip more enjoyable but we don't want the added trouble.

My husband used to take old cars apart and put them back together. He is very handy and can take care of little things. We are concerned about warranty's. I have been reading that tiffin has really great customer service. Still trying to do research on jayco. The seneca looks so nice! But how is the quality? Do you know by any chance?

Thanks
another thought would be to just rent/lease a motorhome since this is a 3 month trip...if you liked rving this would give you a chance to try it out and with each rv you come to learn what plan you really like and what you don't....you may want to consider a truck and fifth wheel if you do not intend to tow a vehicle, that way you would have something to drive around ...i think with the amt. Of moving about that you plan to do, it is going to be so troublesome in trying to rent a vehicle at each stop. We did that once and it was a problem in getting vehicles delivered at the time we wanted. It would also be helpful for you to rent a class c and a class a for a 3-4 day trip, prior to purchasing and try the trips without a tow vehicle. Good luck to you. I agree to posts of probably steering clear of fleetwood.
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Old 03-12-2010, 09:21 AM   #14
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Thank You!

Wow,

Thank you so much for all the great suggestions and helpful advice! We really appreciate it! We are estimating that our trip will take 3 to 4 months, but we are open to remaining on the road longer. This is very exciting for us, and we will be blogging about each destination along the way.

We are going to be patient until we find the right deal and the right RV for us. We do not plan to leave until August, so we have time. There is a big RV show next month in Pomona. We live in southern California so we are going to go and ask a lot of questions.

Thanks again! Hope to see you all on other threads as we begin to do our homework on our adventure

Kara
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