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Old 05-14-2015, 04:02 PM   #1
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New To Class C----Need Advice

Have never owned a Class C but I'm thinking that may be coming to an end shortly. We have owned one Class A Diesel and several Fifth Wheels over the years, but lately have been admiring some of the Class C rigs and kinda thinking that one of these may be what we need as old man time has creeped up on us.

This is where I need your help and advice. We want to buy a nice quality unit but dont know which brands or models to consider. We are not interested in the Super C Diesel, just want a mid to high end gasoline unit that has a good reputation of decent quality and dependable. Could you guys and gals give us a few ideas?

We will be using this unit for about two pretty long trips a year (2 to 5 thousand mi.) and several shorter trips (1000 miles or less). We need to tow a GMC Canyon pickup. Will the Ford V-10 handle this type toad in the mountains successfully?

I have briefly looked at Jayco Greyhawk and the Jayco Melbourne and the the Winnebago Aspect. They all seem to be pretty decent units but don't really know. Please give us some advice on these.

One other thing. We would like one in the 30-32 foot range and two slides. Thank You in advance for any help you can offer.
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Old 05-14-2015, 08:52 PM   #2
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We spent a considerable amount of time looking at C and a few As. In short came close to Winnebago KP or QP - with P meaning premier. One was slightly smaller. Sadly they rather build A coaches than put the features in that Jayco does. As far as A like features in a C , no one beats Jayco in what they deliver. The J ride is worth your investigation and comparison to other brands. My one exception is that we fell head over ... For the Winnebago Trend. It is the best driving C on the road. But it's too small for our needs.


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Old 05-15-2015, 12:03 PM   #3
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if you want the best, go to California and buy a neW LAZY DAZE.
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Old 05-15-2015, 12:55 PM   #4
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Watch the tank sizes on the Jayco. The one's I looked at had a smaller fresh water tank than either the black or gray. Usually I find the mix where the total fresh ~ gray + black.

FWIW I tend to regard them all about the same. They will be on a Ford chassis so the only real difference is in the house features. That gets me to floor plan in a hurry.
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Old 05-18-2015, 08:19 PM   #5
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We have a 32 ft Gulfstream Conquest with the Ford V-10. Gulfstream usually gets bad comments for quality on this forum but I have to say we have been totally happy. We took a trip from home in Florida to the Grand Canyon last summer towing a Chevy Colorado ( similar to your GMC Canyon). The only mechanical issue we had was a front brake caliper that had to be replaced. The motor home handled all the various terrain we encountered with no problems. Probably only saw three or so inclines that required a gear lower than 3rd
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Old 05-18-2015, 08:44 PM   #6
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Thanks. Thats what I need to hear. Folks that have been there and done it. I am use to driving the diesel trucks for the last several years and going gasoline and pulling a tow just makes me have a few doubts. Glad to hear you are pleased with the V-10 and as many as are out there they must be doing a good job. I have not looked at Gulfstream but will check them out. Thanks again.
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Old 05-18-2015, 09:09 PM   #7
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I just traded my 31 Gulf Stream Ultra Class C for a DP. It was on a Ford chassis with the Triton V10. We drove her to Alaska and back while pulling a Jeep Wrangler and didn't have any mechanical problems.

Here are a few things to consider:

1. No air suspension. Be ready to work when facing a stiff cross-wind, or traveling winding mountain roads. I ended up in the ER with an elbow contusion after driving through the Rockies and fighting winds while traveling across Wyoming.

2. The V10 is right under foot and screams like a banshee when climbing.

3. 45 mph on mountainous roads will be the norm.

We had lots of great times in our Class C and it ran great.
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Old 05-19-2015, 07:18 AM   #8
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Yes to all he said. Virtually all the large C's are on the same Ford chassis with the same engine and transmission. The differences are in the box and tankage I saw a lot of differences there when we were looking. Driving a 30 ft C now and looking at either an A or different C.
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Old 05-20-2015, 12:25 PM   #9
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We have a 2012 Forrest River Lexington 283ts, on the Ford V-10 chassies. We tow a Subaru Crosstrek, with no problems. If you look at the Melbourne and the Aspect, you'll see all 3 have basically the same floor plan, so I know what your looking at. We take 4 day trips every 3 weeks or so with 2-3 longer runs (2-3 weeks) a year. As soon as wife retires next year we plan to be on the road at least 6 months a year.
Livability is very good for the two of us and 2 dogs. As with any rv, pack carefully and you'll find enough room . Only problem with the smaller class c's like the Aspect, Lexi, ect., is the smallish outside storage compartments. Compared to a standard "boxey" class c the compartments tend to run smaller. Again, packing carefully, you can get quite a bit stored.
Like any other rv'er I've made a lot of modifications to suit us. I tend to err on the side of safety and tend to "overbuild or overbuy" when making mods.
The V-10 is a reliable motor (I do wish they had used the 3 valve version instead of the 2 valve) with adaquate power. Never had a problem towing in the Smokies or North Ga mountains. Maintains 65 on the interstate. Have added a Derale 40 row tranny cooler in series with the factory unit. Getting ready to get the 5 Star tune for the added power/torque.
Any of the units your looking at are all pretty much built the same way, using the same materials and equipment, just built by different people. You just have to keep looking until you find that "right" rig. We looked at about a dozen similar rigs until we stumbled across ours.
Good luck in your search.
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Old 05-20-2015, 02:02 PM   #10
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Check your OCCC (yellow sticker, usually in the door jamb of newer rigs). Lots of Class C's have very little carrying capacity. Usually a direct relation to the opulence found inside the coach. The more stark, the more OCCC. You'll have to find your happy place w/ regards to this.
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Old 05-20-2015, 02:37 PM   #11
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As far as the weight and capacity of the rigs your looking at, I'll post mine and you can use it as a guide.
GVWR on the sticker of mine is 14,500 lbs, which is the same as listed in the Ford 2012 brosure for the E series vans, the cut a way E-450 listed as 14,500 lbs.
There is a second sticker affixed to the door jamb, I believe placed there by Forrest River, which states the dry empty weight of my rig is 11,488 lbs. Pretty sure this is the weight of the rig with the appliances, ac, ect. If this is correct than I would have a load capacity of around 3000 lbs.
I weighed mine at a truck scale and it came in at 12,760 lbs. This was with a full tank of gas, 1/2 tank of fresh water, clothing for the two of us that we keep in the rig, dishes, pots, pans, camping gear like grill, level blocks, the tools, compressor, ect I carry. And me in the drivers seat (185 lbs). That still gives me around 1800 lbs. And I don't ever plan on carrying that much extra stuff over what we carry now.
Granted, we do tow a 3100 lb car, and I'm not going to get into how or if that affects the GRWR. Its back there and tows just fine.
Again, thats just my rig, and the only true way to find out about the one your intrested in would be to find out what it really weighs prior to loading it up.
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Old 05-20-2015, 11:03 PM   #12
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The Ford package is very reliable and maintenance costs are very low.

I like the Winnebago products because of the full fiberglass roofs, dual pane windows, long wheel base with factory air bags, smooth shinny get coat exterior.

Behind the scenes the Winnebago wiring is pretty good not just wires laying everywhere.
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Old 05-21-2015, 11:27 AM   #13
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Thanks to all for the good info---very helpful. At the moment the Winnebago Aspect and the Jayco Greyhawk still seems to be two that I will certainly look at but nothing is off the table. Just trying to get comfortable withe the capabilities of a Class C, especially the loading capacity and the ability of the V-10 to tow in mountains.

Thanks again and if other ideas occur to you, please let me hear them
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Old 05-21-2015, 11:39 AM   #14
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Greyhawks are nice rigs. Sometimes they can get heavy though. I looked at a 29MV that had a paltry 1600 pounds of OCCC left to it after full gas and fluids (fluids does not mean water). I backed out of the deal b/c of the OCCC. Damn shame too b/c the rig was N-I-C-E.
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