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Old 04-06-2013, 09:20 PM   #15
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I'm with Bug512 - capacity of C will be eaten alive by 5 or 6 people and a dog. And driving anywhere in town will be tough. Even in my B back in the day we did the drive by and circle the grocery store in small towns and big cities alike. The more livable the unit the less functional as a "daily driver" or runabout.

I don't know anything about the "chosen one" but I will almost bet it will not carry the weight you will require of it for a long weekend and certainly not 3 weeks. Not trying to rain on the parade but the cargo capacity is what usually pushes folks over the line and into DPs. At least that was our experience.
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Old 04-07-2013, 07:37 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ted S. View Post
2labs, you nailed it. I'm talking you got it right down to the make, model, floor plan and year. The exact coach I was looking at.

I wonder if I could go a few feet smaller, but I think it may be too much to ask with a larger family. The coach has 2350 CCC.
I thought one of the requirements was "10+ MPG"?

You're not going to get anywhere near that unless you have every pedalling or pushing. You'll be lucky to get a steady 8 MPG. That's 25% less than your minimum.
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Old 04-07-2013, 08:50 AM   #17
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So I guess I'm confused, I haven't made a decision yet for fear of getting it wrong.

Couple comments, I see those Bounders with the Ford V10 same as the C 2labs posted. I understand the Bounder gets 7? So the smaller C would not do better?

As for CCC. I am not all inexperienced in this as with the popoup we carry a fair amount of stuff but we are just " short timers " vs " full timers "...we travel to Florida on a plane with enough stuff in suitcases to last just fine for a week.

I guess in the end there is no real right or wrong answers, but are only preferences. I do love the Allegro Breeze 28' but not enought beds. If I could get that with bunks it would work. I also love the Lazy Daze 27' Rear Bath but don't like the need to make up beds.

I like the Airsteam, but want the coach available during the trip.

Then there is the mileage issues, 7 MPG would just suck. I think it would factor in too much to the trip consideration.

Maybe in the end the answer is a Harley Road King and a bedroll.
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Old 04-07-2013, 11:02 AM   #18
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As far as the gas milage goes, what you have working against you is frontal area. If its a class A, C, travel trailer or fifth wheel trailer you can't defy the physics of the wind force against the front of any of the mentioned above.

Length will not really effect the milage. You have already punched a hole in the air so 28' or 35' will not matter.

Keep looking and ask questions.
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Old 04-07-2013, 11:55 AM   #19
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I have been reading this thread with great interest. If you happen to find ANY Class C or Class A that gets 15 mpg, please let us know. I think you'll find most of us flocking to buy one. I currently have a 36' class A and get between 7.5 and 8 mpg and think that's great for the size of the vehicle. With a steep enough downgrade and a tail wind I've actually seen it register 19 mpg for a few seconds. All things are relative. What we spend for fuel we more than make up for in food and campground costs, not to mention the comfort aforded by the motorhome.

You indicated that your desire is to spend most of your time in state and national parks. When our children were young we spent many, many vacations in state parks here in Michigan. We hade a pop up at that time and carried a "spare room" with us. The spare was a small tent, and the kids would argue over who got to use the tent instead of being stuck in the pop up with mom and dad. We also spent most of our time outdoors, so the limited space inside was not a big issue.

We graduated from the pop up to a 28' class C. We have never towed a car with us and found the C was fine for our site seeing and always found a suitable place to park wherever we went. Then with the kids grown we went to a 32' class A for the two of us and occasionally one grandson. There were no slides, but was fine for us. We now have our 36' with two slides and is our rolling condo. We still pack the "spare room" with us for when we are in state or national parks that allow it. We still don't tow a car. We have found that we can rent cars in areas that we want to explore. We do own a towable vehicle, but have not set it up for towing yet. We currently only stay in one place for a few days and currently it is financially advantagious to rent. We can rent lots of cars for what it costs to properly set up a car for towning. If we were "snowbirding" that formula would be different.

It looks like the class C that was recommended would work well for your intended purposes. The only caution would be the CCC of the unit. After you fill the water tank and load the people there may not be much room left for clothes and other personal belongings. You will clearly need to schedule some stops for laundry along your route.

It sounds like a wonderful family trip you are planning. You will be creating memories that will last a lifetime.
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Old 04-07-2013, 12:27 PM   #20
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Just the leprechan, you'll have 25 grand left over to buy gas. Remember , if you go 5000 miles the difference between 7 and 11 mpg is about a thousand dollars in fuel.

If everything else is good for you on the unit, just go ahead and pull the trigger. The TT or 5ver would not be as convenient.
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Old 04-07-2013, 01:31 PM   #21
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Unfortunately, most of us completely revise our “must have” and “nice to have lists” after we have owned an RV or two. We also tend to focus on our needs right now, instead of what our needs are a few years down the road. You are doing well asking the experienced folks on this forum.

My first advice: This is an expensive decision, so take your time.

I agree with the others. Your cargo carrying capacity in a class C will go very quickly after you fill the water tank and add several people and supplies. Most likely, you will be overloaded.

You have a generous budget, so I would at least look at Class A coaches. There are several class A coaches available with bunk beds as well as pull down beds from overhead. These have become popular models in the last few years. Some also have a booth dinette that converts into a bed for “short” people. You should also look at an RV with two front slides. This greatly increases the living space and allows some of the children to sleep in sleeping bags on the extra floor space. Stay away from propane powered generators. Ask if the coach has an inverter? This way the kids can watch TV or play games without running the generator 24/7. Don’t be afraid of used coaches. There are many bargains out there.

Last, I would look at the drive train on the coach. See if you can find a rear engine diesel power train. It’s not just the diesel engine, but the transmission, suspension, carry capacity, cooling system, and the entire coach is built better. You will enjoy your time on the road more and it will endure better. Best of luck!
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Old 04-07-2013, 03:39 PM   #22
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Thanks for all the insight folks. I hope to become a helpful contributor in the future perhaps helping folks with this same topic.

What I find interesting is that RVing looks as if it has changed, where once the "camper" was to take the family on vacations, now so many of these campers have grown up to DP's and when you look at the floor plan, are really optimized for just two people. I read somewhere the average age of the RV couple is 55 years old.

It think it is fantastic that people retire and full time in RV's, however it makes me sad that so many families don't take advantage of our great nation, the incredible sights an protected lands so many fought for, and load up in a RV and hit the road. Where else are you confined to a small space with your family and create such priceless memories?

When I was 3 my parents sold our house in California and traveled across the US for three months in a VW camper, eventually ending up in Massachusetts. My Dad had a job lined up, but no house. I still remember some images, but for the most part the memories are gone. But I can't help thinking that road trip is the reasoning why I am so adamant about taking my family on these trips.

So my research goes on. I feel confident the motorhome is the way to go. I'd like to stay small, in a C, but I could go with an A. I just don't know at this point. I am absorbing all of your great insight. That you all for your responses.
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Old 04-07-2013, 07:36 PM   #23
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One more suggestion on a class A. It is a bit larger than you were originally thinking, but I think meets your space needs. Check out Winnebago Motorhomes - 2013 Vista for the Winnegabo Vista with bunk beds.
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Old 04-08-2013, 01:18 AM   #24
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Thanks for all the insight folks. I hope to become a helpful contributor in the future perhaps helping folks with this same topic.

What I find interesting is that RVing looks as if it has changed, where once the "camper" was to take the family on vacations, now so many of these campers have grown up to DP's and when you look at the floor plan, are really optimized for just two people. I read somewhere the average age of the RV couple is 55 years old.

It think it is fantastic that people retire and full time in RV's, however it makes me sad that so many families don't take advantage of our great nation, the incredible sights an protected lands so many fought for, and load up in a RV and hit the road. Where else are you confined to a small space with your family and create such priceless memories?

When I was 3 my parents sold our house in California and traveled across the US for three months in a VW camper, eventually ending up in Massachusetts. My Dad had a job lined up, but no house. I still remember some images, but for the most part the memories are gone. But I can't help thinking that road trip is the reasoning why I am so adamant about taking my family on these trips.

So my research goes on. I feel confident the motorhome is the way to go. I'd like to stay small, in a C, but I could go with an A. I just don't know at this point. I am absorbing all of your great insight. That you all for your responses.
Just a thought, here. When our kids were all still at home, we rented Class C motorhomes for several vacations. The kids loved it. It was a great way to enjoy the RV vacation experience without the investment of owning.
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Old 04-08-2013, 11:23 AM   #25
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I second SarahW's suggestion to rent a few before buying anything. We rented both class A and class C motorhomes before buying our current Winnebago Adventurer. We went to a local dealer and told them how we planned to use the motorhome. They made suggestions and rented us what they thought would best fit our needs.

After living in one for a few days or weeks you'll have a better idea of what things should be on your "must have" list as opposed to the things you think you want. Some things don't even cross your mind until you see a need for them. One thing that sticks out in my mind is that we didn't originally think about a leveling system. A few nights sleeping at an angle in Rock Mountain National Park made us believers.

In our case we also wanted to be sure our dogs could handle the long travel days without getting car sick. The last thing you need is a coach full of people and 2 sick dogs.

All has worked out well. We've put over 100,000 miles on our current motorhome and are very satisfied with the decision. We liked it so much we ordered another Adventurer 32H earlier this year. If all goes according to plan it will be delivered to the dealer today. The plan is to pick it up this weekend and put another 100,000 miles or so on it.
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Old 04-08-2013, 12:42 PM   #26
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I have looked into renting, and was just floored with the pricing. The reality is, the rental prices probably refect all of the hidden costs of RV ownership, from purchase price to maintence and repairs, taxes, insurance, storage, depreciation, etc., etc. then they have to add profit and costs of the rental business operation.

I do feel the RV I need now will not be the RV I need in 10 years. In 10 years, the kids will be going this way and that, will they want to travel with the parents for weeks on end? I think not.

So I think there is some merit to buying a decent used unit, and then working up to an newer RV. Heck, if I got a good deal on a C, used it for a few years, then sold it I would probably come out ahead in terms of cost vs rental costs.

I also considered leaving it near an airport out west and paying for storage. Flying home, then when we are up for a road trip out west, fly out and save 5-6 days of traveling plus gas vs a plan ticket. Just a thought, the logistics may make that not a good idea.
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Old 04-08-2013, 01:17 PM   #27
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The Coachman you were looking at has a GVWR of 14,500 (Ford Chassis) pounds.

They do not say what the curb (dry weight is). They say this "Each Coachmen RV is weighed at the manufacturing facility prior to shipping. A label identifying the dry weight of the actual unit and the available cargo and occupant capacity is applied to every Coachmen RV prior to leaving our facilities."

So what is it Coachman? This website says 12,133 pounds.

So you can carry (around) 2,367 pounds.

It holds 50 gallons of freshwater so that is 417.5 pounds

So now you have 1949.5 pounds left for:

Total weight of you, your Wife, kids, dog, clothes, food, propane, grill, camera, blankets, toys, stuff.. ?? It adds up.

Another note is will a motor home have enough safety belts for all the occupants?
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