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Old 03-12-2014, 08:49 PM   #1
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Need an opinion, which MH?

Need to make up my mind! I have got my selection Boiled down to:
A. 2014 Minne Winne 31kp
B. Forester 3011
Your opinions and experiences are welcome. This will be our 1st MH.
Thanks
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Old 03-13-2014, 05:05 PM   #2
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First of all, welcome to IRV2!

So...why a mini?
In that I assume you're talking class-C, right?

I would choose winnebago only because I don't know anything about 'forester'.

I understand the logic for a class-c...supposedly easier to drive - they're not.
Cheaper to buy and drive - they're not.
They have more bunks - why? Do you have a gaggle of children?

Class C's have much smaller tanks, hold less cargo, have much smaller carrying capacity, are not as capable for towing if you do that, and tend to have a much lesser build quality.

So, why not consider a class-a in a similar size and vintage? There is tons of stuff on the used market these days so you can get a nice coach for a helluva price.

I just answered a similar question for a new RV'r looking at a sprinter unit here:
2007 Vista Cruiser Purchase Question

The reason you'll hear these same things over and over is because once you start RVing you'll find you never have too much room, nor too big of tanks. And there's always more stuff to load up when you go. Folks that RV a lot generally end up with a class-a anyway, so why not start there? I did, about 14 years ago.
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Old 03-13-2014, 05:14 PM   #3
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FWIW, Winnebago is a good company with a good reputation. One's I've owned have been well built with lots of cool, thoughtful features.

I suggest you drive both and see which one you like on the road the best. You can always get past quirks of the layout or features, but how it drives is hard to get past. So the one you are more comfortable driving is the one to get.
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Old 03-13-2014, 05:43 PM   #4
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I had a Class A diesel pusher, loved it. Bought a condo, down sized to 2012 Winnebago 28T Aspect class C. It feels like I can take it to the grocery store shopping. Yes less storage, but better miles per gallon than my friends Class a gas with same Ford V/10. Handles like a dream even in wind conditions, tires cost less, insurance is less. I tow a Saturn Ion with out feeling it. I have towed our full sized Jeep Ltd and have power to spare. Build quality seems as good as any of them. I know you can buy a Gas A for less than the Aspect, but there are usually reasons for that. Test drive lots of them, then make your decision. There are thousands for sail, don't get stampeded into a sale. Have fun, regards, Clare
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Old 03-13-2014, 05:46 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by rekwiat View Post
Need to make up my mind! I have got my selection Boiled down to: A. 2014 Minne Winne 31kp B. Forester 3011 Your opinions and experiences are welcome. This will be our 1st MH. Thanks
I am supposing you chose these models for the same reasons I chose my first rig. I bought an 8-year old 1984 Fleetwood Jamboree, class C, 23 foot. It was wonderful and served us well for 8 years.

From your choices, I would choose the Winnie. Dont know much about the Forester.

Happy Trails!!!!
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Old 03-13-2014, 06:24 PM   #6
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We have a 2011 Sunseeker 3010DS which is the same floor plan as the forester. The floor plan is awesome for us. We have been using it full time for about a year now. No problems and really enjoy the size and layout.
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Old 03-14-2014, 12:04 AM   #7
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First choice would be the Winnie.

As for the argument of C or A. we have had both. Most all of the larger class C's have a low or limited cargo carrying capacity. The class C chassis is limited on GVWR and a large class C is heavy before you load your gear and supplies.

On the Ford E-450 chassis, the suspension is not up to the chore of adequately handling the big box hung on its back and more often than not exhibits pretty poor road handling.

A class A is built on a heavier chassis, has better load carrying capacities and better road manners.

Ken
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Old 03-14-2014, 12:53 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rekwiat View Post
Need to make up my mind! I have got my selection Boiled down to:
A. 2014 Minne Winne 31kp
B. Forester 3011
Your opinions and experiences are welcome. This will be our 1st MH.
Thanks
Howdy and welcome to iRV2! Sounds like you have done your homework and now it's decision time! I don't have first-hand experience with either the Winnie or the Forester, but I believe both Winnebago and FR build nice RVs.

If both units seem to have a similar build quality and drive train, I'd say choose the one with the most liveable "house." Spend time in each unit, getting the feel of how it would work for your family. Consider the kitchen layout and counterspace, bathroom layout, sleeping arrangements, etc. Good luck and let us know what you decide.
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Old 03-14-2014, 01:03 AM   #9
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What I like about the C in both of those models is airbags for the passengers in the front. 2 doors right there for exit and entry are nice as well. I've looked at both forester and Winnebago and like both. I've owned a Winnie, Fleetwood, and now a Chinook (B) each for different reasons and stages of life. .

If you get a chance, drive both. Welcome to the forum - and glad that you are looking at becoming a part of something with great lasting memories.
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Old 03-14-2014, 09:08 AM   #10
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I have a 2014 Itasca Spirit 31K which is the same as the Winnebago Minnie Winnie you are looking at. We have had it for a year now and really like the layout. It handles fine without any of the "issues" some have complained about. As far as CCC there is more than enough. With my wife and I in the MH, fully loaded for camping, with about 3/4 tank of gas, the MH weighed 11,940# leaving us more than 2,500# under the GVWR.
Looking at the Forester it seems the main difference is the additional slide it has in the rear bedroom. I'm sure it's nice but it does add weight. We have more than enough room without having the extra slide in ours.
The only issue/concern I have with the unit is the overall length. At 32 1/2' it's a long unit. This is my 3rd class C, the others being 22' and 24'. The other two I could pretty much go/park anywhere with them. This one, not so much. Even driving the unit is different from the others, where this one you have to plan ahead. The other 2 I could make a U turn in three lanes, whereas this one needs a good 3 1/2 lanes to make that U turn, which just isn't there in a lot of places.
Best of luck with whatever you go with.
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Old 03-14-2014, 09:13 AM   #11
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For real, the Winnie has GOT TO be a better machine than the forest river.....
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Old 03-14-2014, 09:22 AM   #12
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I would base the decision on which floor plan suites you best for your use. Not knowing how many will be using it and what you are using it for one really can't make a recommendation on anything other than reliability and known problems of either model.

Ignore the posters that think there is nothing in the world that will work but class A's. Full timers staying in RV parks are not the only ones using motor homes. If you like remote camping forget an A. It wont fit in many of the best camping spots unless you are in the southeast camping it the desert. A's are fine for long excursions and full timing but there are a lot of other uses they are not ideal for.

I would look at the total weight of each unit and figure out it's cargo carrying capacity. There are quite a few longer ones that can carry little more than fuel, water, and a couple of adults. The longer and heaver they are the more chance of handling problems. Winnie's do have a large following.
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Old 03-14-2014, 09:28 AM   #13
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Quote:
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For real, the Winnie has GOT TO be a better machine than the forest river.....
"Better" depends on the preferences of the user.


We looked at lots of Winnebagos and liked the Forest River much better. To me, the interior of the Winnie's seemed less comfortable. The engine and chassis are the same so it comes down to personal preference about floor plan, color scheme, etc. Most RVs use similar appliances and furniture.

We have lived full time in our Sunseeker for a year and even though it's a 2011 model we have had only minor maintenance issues such as light bulbs, one drawer catch broke, can't think of anything else.

The class C is not intimidating to drive. Ours has an inflatable air suspension thing and drives great even over mountains, etc. We tow a car and have had no issues with weight. But we don't carry lots of kids. Just food, clothing and a couple of bikes, computers and cameras. I like the air bags safety and being able to get in and out if the front seats.

There really is no right answer here. Forest river is a very good company. I know from experience that they stand behind their products. The same is true for Winnebago and several other manufacturers.
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Old 03-14-2014, 09:48 AM   #14
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The class C is not intimidating to drive. Ours has an inflatable air suspension thing and drives great even over mountains, etc. We tow a car and have had no issues with weight. But we don't carry lots of kids. Just food, clothing and a couple of bikes, computers and cameras. I like the air bags safety and being able to get in and out if the front seats.
From what I read on the internet, you and I must have 2 of the very few well handling, longer motor homes on the E450 platform.
I must admit that I haven't (and don't want to) pulled a toad, so perhaps mine could behave differently pulling a vehicle.
Out of curiosity have you ever run your unit over a scale ?
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