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Old 02-09-2013, 10:47 AM   #1
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Gas Safari Serengeti good?

Hi all, I'm new at this so forgive me if I'm in the wrong Forum. Ok, I'm buying my first RV. I'm going to live in it for awhile. Passed on the one I thought I was going to get because it had no maintenance records and neither of the past two owners have had it long enough to tell me anything. So, I have taken a leap in faith and am buying one out of state. It is a 1989 Safari Serengeti, Gas, Ford 460. (Which seemed unusual).The owner is the second owner with all records. He also seems to be very careful with maintenance. Even though not required of gas coaches, he drains the fuel and propane if it's going to sit. It doesn't sit more than two months. It has 1,400 miles on a new engine and new fuel lines because it DID have the spark plug problem known to 460 Fords. I feel like I'm getting a good deal at $9,500. He's selling it because he is older has two RV's and two airplanes....just too many toys. All work is done by Pro RV mechanic. They engine repair work has a 80k warranty. I'm going to be good with this rig right???
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Old 02-09-2013, 01:10 PM   #2
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I'd just say be careful. It sounds a little too perfect, and the fact that its out of state is a little suspicious. Just be sure you see it in person before you fork over any money, and that there is no funny business with the title. It might be a good deal though!
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Old 02-09-2013, 02:19 PM   #3
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The 460" Ford is known for exhaust manifold leaks on the passenger side,
but I haven't heard about any 460" spark plug problems, the 2004-08 V8's, 4.8, 5.4, 6.8 do have plug problems.
If they have service and history records you should be fine. Have someone that knows what to look for crawl around underneath it first.
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Old 02-10-2013, 09:44 AM   #4
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Gas Safari

Thank you all for your input! Keep em' coming! I love this site. I have never found so many helpful people in on place! So, does a new engine on an '89 take care of any manifold problem even though it is not the trouble years? Yea, I'm feeling a little creepy about the whole out of state thing but I WAS praying for an Angel! I just didn't specify where! Careful what you pray for right? I checked out this man, personal and business. Cross referenced addresses, spoken several times, the works. He is who and where he says he is. He doesn't care how I send him the deposit (whatever is easier for me) and is taking less than what is normal for a deposit, as the point is "commitment". The $500 is like 5 million to me right now. Until the house sale closes, I have NO money. He also has been holding it for me until I knew more about the house as I sent him a letter of intention asap. He's not pressuring me in any way other than to say that he'll hold it until end of Feb for me.
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Old 02-10-2013, 10:03 AM   #5
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460 Ford V8?? R-I-G-H-T!!! We had one--exhaust manifold bolts pulled out of heads--required new heads. Difficult to find as they were special to RV 460 engines.
Transmission (Ford) had been rebuilt when we bought the class C. Crapped out. Had it rebuilt three (3) times in less than two years!! Fortunately trans rebuilder covered rebuilds.
We own a Ford Sport trac but I would never again buy a RV with a Ford 460 V8 again. Got 4.55 MPG on a 1997 Georgy Boy Maverick Class C. Now have a 36' DP and get 8.6MPG. Which would you rather have?
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Old 02-10-2013, 10:48 AM   #6
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I know mine is a pig on gas, but I don't really care, I'm fulltime since last July, have been from Ft. Worth to the Gulf coast to the hills of north Georgia and have NEVER checked my MPG, it would just put a damper on my trips, but at Road Atlanta during race weekends the nearest hotel, a dumpy dive a few feet from the noisy interstate charges $189. per night, I can stay at the track for $35. Thurs-Sun.
I don't like the fact that I can't upgrade my trans, with a GM you can go to a 4-speed w/overdrive, easy swap, I'm stuck with the C6 3-speed, Ford changed the bolt patterns so nothing interchanges. And there are some parts on the 460" LSG875 that are just not available anymore.
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Old 02-12-2013, 08:10 PM   #7
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All things are relevant, I'd imagine, but for these neck of the woods, $9500 seems a little steep for a 1989. Regardless of that, you need to be more concerned with structure and systems as quite similar to the house, there are many more things than drivetrain; i.e. plumbing, electrical, charging, LP gas, etc. And, above all things, the biggest evil in older coaches can be simply; time. The slightest leak on the outside can cause quite a bit of rot on the inside. You need to get familiar with words like "delamination" before anything else.

Having aid all of that, the best piece of advice I can give you is to seek out a person or business that does RV inspections and have it looked at before you spend your money. Yes, if it "fails" inspection you're out the cost, HOWEVER, you've probably saved yourself thousands of dollars. Not to sound negative, but you wouldn't be the first person to find out whatever they spent on the motorhome was for nothing when the rot, etc. reared it's ugly head. As to anything, be pound wise and penny foolish.
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Old 02-13-2013, 08:48 AM   #8
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The Safari is not a victim of side delamination, Galvanic corrosion yes, where the stainless steel lower panels meet the aluminum sides.
The roof leaks are usually at the front and rear cap seams, and the kitchen area.
$9.5K sounds a bit high to me too for the age and being a gasser. If you are close to broke you need to look into where you plan to park this while living in it and see what the costs will be and if any age of coach restrictions apply. Hope it works out for you whatever you decide.
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Old 03-03-2014, 06:05 PM   #9
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Manuel...check into the GearVendors.com site...they offer and under/overdrive for the C6 and i am getting almost 11mph. bolts right in. you will need to get driveshaft shortened or new shorter one.
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Old 03-04-2014, 03:30 AM   #10
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id say a inspection is due price seems high to me
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Old 03-04-2014, 10:14 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deckiedoo View Post
Manuel...check into the GearVendors.com site...they offer and under/overdrive for the C6 and i am getting almost 11mph. bolts right in. you will need to get driveshaft shortened or new shorter one.
Thanks deckiedoo, but my parking brake is on the back of my tranny and Gearvendors does not make a unit for my setup.
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