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Old 11-02-2013, 06:40 PM   #1
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Help please!



I have been offered the chance to get a 28 foot Layton Celebrity 5th wheel with a slide. (1998 I believe)

I think it was made by Skyline, I have been looking for any inf, but not sure what I need to know, It does have a winter pack which is good for me, the man didn't really know much as it belonged to inlaws and all he knew was it didn't leak! (that is good I know...
I want to go and look at it but we are having a major snow storm so it might be a few days. Hoping to take someone who at least owns an RV so having his knowledge against the mans almost lack of ... but I guess I want to know if anyone knows anything to be watchful for ( i am thinking mice)
He just wants it off his land and has priced it to go...
I do know it is aluminum exterior and possibly wood frame... how will I be able to tell??
Thanks for any and all info.
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Old 11-02-2013, 08:40 PM   #2
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At this time of year, in cold country, it should have been winterized. That makes it difficult to test the plumbing (though maybe you could pressurize it with the pump).

You should be able to test the furnace and the gas cooktop but don't fire up the water heater (it's either drained or filled with ant-freeze).
Look in all the cupboards and compartments you can get into, for signs of mice or other critters.

We have shopped for (and bought) 4 trailers and a motorhome over the years. A good, leak-free, roof is the first thing we look for. It's sad to see some of the trailers which were otherwise very nice, but had roof problems. If the roof is still good, and there is no water damage, you can fix almost anything else that needs attention.

If this thing is priced cheap enough, and you are willing to work on it yourself, this may be worth a gamble and would be a good project. If you get it in shape, with all systems working, you may even be able to flip it and make a buck or two next spring or summer. If you do sell it for more than you invested, that would be a very rare thing. Most of us never recover the money we put in.

Good luck!
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Old 11-02-2013, 11:21 PM   #3
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Checking out a used trailer

Look in the cupboards and press on the walls for soft spots or wrinkled wallpaper. Also look at the interior ceiling for any kind of staining. Again feel. Does the trailer have any kind of a musty smell? Check the BR walls for soft spots bulges and any water damage. Bring a ladder to check the roof for soft spots and condition. Roofs are big $ to replace. Check the exterior for bulges or delamination of the layers. Don't be shy about feeling exterior walls. Be very diligent and check out the tires for the date code. Most tires develop cracks from lack of use. Blowouts can cause a lot of damage. Figure in the price of new tires. Do a search on this site for a check list in buying a used RV. Post again. Take interior and exterior pictures. Take someone with you who owns an RV. Go look at the unit twice if need be. Take your time doing the inspection.
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Old 11-03-2013, 07:40 AM   #4
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Where is it located? Perhaps, someone knowledgeable might offer to look at it with you.

Joel
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Old 11-03-2013, 08:32 AM   #5
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Where is it located? Perhaps, someone knowledgeable might offer to look at it with you.

Joel
Thank you all for youe help, I am planning to see if my neighbour will come with me as he owns a 5th wheel and will at least be more knowledgeable than the seller seems to be, I have no idea how long it has been standing or when it was last used, it does have a few dents on the front, no idea how that happened,
I did call him back and told him I would come out to see it. (He has offered to tow it to my place, but I want to take a look first.I have learned a lot from this forum and just lost a deal on an older 5th that was in perfect condition,
but at least I have an idea what to look for, in a perfect world people wouldn't lie about stuff and I get the feeling from our phone call he is a bit of a wheeler dealer... He told me someone else was looking at it (for more money) and I asked him why hadn't he sold it to him...
There was a sort of offhand answer... so I am suspicious of course.
I shall find that list and take all your suggestions into the search.
thanks again,I have to look at it as one of those 'if it seems too good to be true, then it probably is, sort of scenarios....

BTW .. i called him back to ask if the jacks were manual or electric, he said both.. I did say, what do you mean by that, he said , well if there is no power then you can work them manually... (I thought he would say the front are electric and the rear manual) is this possible?

Well a look is not a 'sale' and I will give it a chance, but I shall give it a thorough going over, (I will run at any sign of mice I know they love wiring systems!! )
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Old 11-03-2013, 03:15 PM   #6
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Change of heart and mind!

Well I got to thinking about this offer and was not sure of the make, but it was the attitude of the seller that put me off .. it is a distance away and I don't think I would like it no matter what I did to it, so will not do this,
I did find for very few more dollars exactly what I wanted many miles away
and spoke at length to the owner, he is a mechanic and has kept this unit in tip top shape, they are going smaller because the grandkids no longer wish to camp... (university age, so no time)
It has been well cared for, it is a Vanguard, and if you think I can find reviews on this, think again, it is a winter unit also.
There are some sites that McAffee wont let me into and those are the ones with archives to older RVs (is 1997 considered older??)

I think for the few extra dollars I will be much happier and less stressed for sure! I think the other would have been an exercise in futility for me and as was pointed out a potential money pit!

Thanks to all for your 'reality check ' it did indeed give me pause!
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Old 11-03-2013, 03:21 PM   #7
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I think for the few extra dollars I will be much happier and less stressed for sure! I think the other would have been an exercise in futility for me and as was pointed out a potential money pit!

Thanks to all for your 'reality check ' it did indeed give me pause!
Sometimes the Best deal we make is the deal we don't make.
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Old 11-03-2013, 07:07 PM   #8
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Sometimes the Best deal we make is the deal we don't make.

how very very true..
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Old 11-03-2013, 08:10 PM   #9
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For what it's worth, it is possible to have a 5th wheel trailer with both electric and manual jacks on the front. We had one. It was a Newmar Kountry Star, I don't remember the exact year, but I think it was the mid 1990's. There was a crank handle that you could engage to turn the jack mechanism manually. If I remember correctly, you didn't have to remove or disengage the motor to do it. There must have been some sort of one-way clutch in the motor's drive line.
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Old 11-04-2013, 10:22 PM   #10
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For what it's worth, it is possible to have a 5th wheel trailer with both electric and manual jacks on the front. We had one. It was a Newmar Kountry Star, I don't remember the exact year, but I think it was the mid 1990's. There was a crank handle that you could engage to turn the jack mechanism manually. If I remember correctly, you didn't have to remove or disengage the motor to do it. There must have been some sort of one-way clutch in the motor's drive line.
Thanks, this is good to know, but it was not the deciding factor in my decision,
when I looked more closely at the photo there were some big dents in the front and not sure the tires that I could see looked too good. There were other things not really vital but still had to be fixed, It might have been ok but right now I don't have the time to try and fix up anything , 'something' said to pass
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