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Old 08-17-2014, 11:54 AM   #1
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My Wife LOVES RV-ing SO MUCH she now wants...

Greetings from Lake Conroe, Texas where I am experiencing a bit of a dilemma and would appreciate (as always) advice. Bottom line is that my wife loves RV-ing so much that she now wants to get a newer coach before next summer ONLY because our 1997 American Eagle has no slides. And, this is after I have updated it SIGNIFICANTLY over the past four years, both cosmetically and mechanically, since I bought it from its original owner. (Please don’t take her “wrong” as she if very grateful and loving, yet thinks we should get something newer and start enjoying it now instead of later, which of course is never guaranteed)

My concern is that I would lose out big time by giving up the purely mechanical and highly dependable Cummins c8.3 for a newer and more complicated Cummins with electronics that I would not be able to work on or diagnose other than routine maintenance. I am also concerned about all the coach house electronics and slide mechanisms on newer motorhomes and their dependability. Am I worrying over nothing? Are there some of you who owned older coaches who now wish they had not “up-graded”? Or the opposite, those that are VERY happy you did upgrade...

Speaking of upgrading, I have done soooooooooo much to my 97 Eagle that I am finding the thought of giving it up very difficult. Just some of the upgrades I have done my self: new carpet, new toilet, new bronze shower enclosure with new rainglass, new LED televisions, new LED interior and exterior lights, all new plumbing fixtures, new microwave, new wall paper, new day/night shades, recovered my own valences, new bath and kitchen ceiling exhaust fans and installed new exterior covers, HID headlight bulbs, new kitchen table Formica, recovered table chairs, new rear air springs, three new automatic moisture ejectors, painted all interior cabinet hardware bronze to match new plumbing fixtures, new pac-brake cylinder, new Michelin tires, new alternator, and new fuel tank sender, new dash ac compressor and new ac condenser fan immediately after purchase, new Koni shocks, new pyrometer and boost gauages, new rear brake chambers, installed surround sound system, new dash stereo and speakers, new digital hvac thermostats, replaced propane tank regulator, fill and spew valve, installed remote fuel filter heads for the hard to reach Cummins on-engine fuel filter and same for genset, new rear tail, turn and stop lights AND MORE… Do you feel my pain…??? I really LOVE my coach and always thought it would be both my first and my last. Those of you who have had both older and newer, please share your thoughts and enjoyment of a newer coach or if you experienced buyers remorse. I worry I would regret getting something newer by buying problems… Thank you very much. And, I feel like I am writing Dear Abby or Ann Landers. :(

Jeff & Sandy near Kingwood, Texas
2016 Newmar Essex 4519 / 2013 FJ Cruiser 4x4 Toad
1997 American Eagle no more, but was outstanding
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Old 08-17-2014, 12:01 PM   #2
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Everyone knows your pain but the saying goes if mommas not happy no one is happy.

2007 Fleetwood Revolution LE 40V
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Old 08-17-2014, 12:42 PM   #3
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Of course you need to keep Momma happy. Look at the benefits of having more space and more amenities. RV's in general have changed over the years. Some are more technically advanced but given that you like tinkering I think your up to the challenge. It comes to a point that you would want some of the newer conveniences too. My next rig I am getting what a want with all the bells and whistles. Why? Because there is no wife looking at the bottom line. It was my man cave and it will always be my man cave. I am an engineer and I like my toys but I also like the technical challenges of fixing a problem. I like root causing the design problems and making changes for ease of use too. Just like you did to your rig now. You made the changes to yours. Its like buying a newer house. Just when you get it the way you want it, its time to upgrade. A happy wife means a VERY happy life. Keep her happy and your RV travels will be the most enjoyable! Good luck on your decision. Now if I can find a wife who loves RVing as much as yours! :-). New RV first then new wife in that order!
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Old 08-17-2014, 12:50 PM   #4
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After 43 years I still can't make her happy. However life will get better as she tells me I am looseing my hearing. I am now looking for a hearing aid with no volume. Problem solved.
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Old 08-17-2014, 01:52 PM   #5
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I can understand your reluctance to upgrade especially since you have put so much work into your current rig. You take pride in your work and like to think about how much better things are than when you got them. I like improving stuff as well.

I bought my older rig for two specific reasons. 1. the cost was within reach and 2. I wanted something to learn on. Being my first RV, I believed and still do that you learn best by having things that need to be put right. To that end, I have put a lot of time and money into fixing and upgrading things. In the process, I have learned about RV plumbing, electrical, generators, tires, propane the list goes on and on.

I never did think however that this would be the rig I would stick with. I want a diesel, I want to haul a toad, I would love have a residential fridge and better entertainment system. These are things that I aspire to and as for the systems and their complexity, well, there really is no avoiding it. Just like our cars, our homes and our taxes, everything gets more complex and often requires additional learning or sometimes special skill sets. Look upon it as a chance to master new knowledge. I bet you will find that most of your current skill set can be brought to bear on on a new rig. Some things you will appreciate, others will make you shake your head in disgust but it is all part of the package with owning any RV.
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Old 08-17-2014, 02:11 PM   #6
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jd956jd956, the second part of the story of "If mama ain't happy ain't nobody happy" is "If daddy ain't happy, nobody cares. But serious I feel your pain. You've made so many great improvements to your coach. However, I have an older entry level Monaco Cayman with an electronically controlled Cummins 300hp ISB engine and two slides. In the 11 years I owned the coach I've had no real problems with the engine or slides other than what I consider normal maintenance items. I did have a stuck egr valve that was covered under warranty and a split silicon boot on the pipe between the CAC and the turbo about 4 years ago. I have had to replace the seals around the slides. I have a friend with a 2004 Diplomat with the 330hp ISC and he hasn't had any problems with his engine either. He too has had to replace the seals on his slides also, but he has 4 slides on his coach.

I wouldn't be afraid of the newer coaches with the electronic engines or slides as long as you find a well maintained coach that meets your needs. And it sounds like you know your way motors, so you would know what to look for when checking out a potential new rig. Just my 2 cents worth.
Mike & Debbie
2003 36' Monaco Cayman
2007 Saturn Vue "pusher"
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Old 08-17-2014, 03:18 PM   #7
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Try to focus on all the new "toys" you could get on a newer coach....helps to let go of the previous one.

Things to get on your next coach...

1). Tag axle. Makes it drive like its on rails...very stable.

2.) Aquahot. Endless hot water. Quiet and comfortable heating. No more
Running out of propane in the winter.

3.) Residential refrigerator. Huge increase in storage. Keeps everything colder.
Doesn't care if coach is not quite level, much less fire risk.

4.) induction cooktop. Less waste heat introduced into kitchen. Better control of heat.
Less fire risk. No more running out of propane.

5.) bigger battery bank, solar panels, Trimetric battery monitor, auto generator start.

6.) heated tile floors. Some are heated with the aquahot, and some are electrically heated.

7.) Slide outs. Full wall slides work for some people. I prefer 4 slides. Huge difference in space since currently you have no slides.

8.) 450 HP or 500 HP or even up to 600 HP are common now.

9.) "Comfort Drive" available on some Newmars 2007 and up. You need to test drive one to see how it works.

10.) Dual-pane glass. Maybe you already had this.....don't know?
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Old 08-17-2014, 03:47 PM   #8
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To the OP How lucky you are with a wife like that. Mine enjoys, but the mention of a newer coach(and we can afford it) is not well taken.

2004 Clss C 31' Winnebgo
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Old 08-17-2014, 03:57 PM   #9
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How much for that old rig with no slides! That is the way I like it
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Old 08-17-2014, 04:34 PM   #10
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Just over a year and a half ago I did the same thing.. I also had a 1997 Eagle that I really liked.. But after our second "snow bird" trips to Arizona we decided we wanted more room preferably 4 slides.. I couldn't afford an other Eagle with 4 slides just too expensive! We looked and ruled out several Tiffins and Busses (Got tired of seeing soft water bays and cracked roof rails) I finally "discovered" Travel Supreme. We ended up with an 04 4 slide forty foot coach that had been extremely well cared for.. Even garage covered.. Never looked back.. It's a 400 Cummins had 4 upgraded flat I put a screens Winegard Travler for HD on Direct on the beautiful screens. I live at 9200 feet in Colorado and the extra 75 Horse and 500 more foot lbs. or torque make mountain driving MUCH easier..
With all your upgrades you should have no problem selling your Eagle.. The first guy who came to look at mine bought it.. I got what I felt was a good buy on mine so we are all happy..
Totally without issues.. No of course not.. Biggest issue was a slide gearbox.. Not a big issue at all..
Just enjoy the process and happy hunting.. BTW The "Jake" brake was worth the change to the ISL!
Ron Husak
Conifer, CO
Living at 9200 Feet and looking down at ya!
04 Travel Supreme 40DS04
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Old 08-17-2014, 04:50 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by homeless View Post
How much for that old rig with no slides! That is the way I like it
I can't imagine having a rig with no slides.
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Old 08-17-2014, 05:07 PM   #12
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humm so try this

install a new slide in to the RV

its just like cutting a new window in to the side wall

there are RV upgrade places out there that can add this for you and every year just add a slide in to the unit

it would cost less to refit the unit then for a new one

keep the GVWR in line

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