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Old 01-30-2018, 06:07 PM   #1
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2004 Dutchstar - renovate or upgrade to 2008 Dutchstar?

Hi all,

Just starting to get back into these RV forums. It has been a long time and want to participate more going forward.

So I know a lot folks ask for opinions when deciding to upgrade or not. So here goes. We are seasonal RVers but we tow a car trailer at times for racing and we tow a GMC Yukon XL the rest of time - so we are limited to units that can tow up to 10,000 lbs. Thatís how we actually ended up in a Newmar and we will not change manufacturers - love the quality. Whenever we think we will we decide to change - we come back to no. We have owned our 2004 DSDP 3809 on freightliner chassis w/330 CAT for 10 years now. It has been a great coach but it has some limitations and we want some improvements. We also no longer have kids along so can opt for a different layout and want to go longer distances. Everything in our coach works but it doesnít handle the best - gets blown around on the highway. Upgrades:- One is I would like to upgrade the flooring - hate the white rug through out (other than kitchen area and bath where we have oak). Also the bedroom is tight - 1 slide. Decor I have never liked - so valences and fabrics need update. We have Newmar working on an estimate to make some upgrades (list is pretty long) and there are some things we wonít get no matter what - the added slide in the bedroom and comfort drive.
We did take a look at a 2008 DSDP 4035 on Spartan Chassis with Comfort Drive this past weekend. Drove really nice and noticeable change with the comfort drive, spartan chassis, and large 425HP engine. It only has 29000 miles on it but that is low and that always worries us. The Newmar dealer first told us it was a 1 owner coach, stored indoors but I found out after it has had 2 owners. Exterior is in beautiful shape overall. Interior is pretty nice and colors we want. The only thing is two sets of fogged windows (we have had none on our 2004), but spoke to Newmar and these can be changed. Coach has newer tires - dated 11/17 and 12/17 - so just put on recently before traded in. The last owner only had it 4 years and just bought a new one. They only put like 5000 miles on it in that time (is that because they had tons of problems?). Batteries unsure at this point and I havenít gone through it with fine tooth comb yet. No noticeable damage. I donít think it has maintenance records but have not checked. My only real hold back on this one is - dealer is too high (but can haggle more with them), it is over 40í+, and it is still 10 years old. On the other hand has what we want and wonít hit the budget too much. I feel like pouring money into our 2004 on decor is probably not worth it but then again it is the coach we know and we still wonít have some upgrades we can get in the 2008 - another is larger refrigerator (canít fit one in ours but could add outside fridge). I should add we boondock often at race tracks and other places - so all electric or residential fridge we are trying to avoid (newer coaches all seem to have residential refrigerators now).
Questions - has anyone done a Reno with Newmar - was it worth it (Floors/decor) in your eyes?
Does anyone own a 2008 DSDP 4035 or other 2008 DSDP - how has it been and are there other issues we should be aware of?
Or should we just go newer?
Thank you.
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Old 01-30-2018, 06:41 PM   #2
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Here's my take,
We had a fairly extensive Reno done to our 03 after spending the first winter in it. See link below.
We don't regret the Reno at all. It was worth every penny and we have enjoyed our coach immensely over the years.
However, our 03 is on a Spartan chassis with an ISC 350 Cummins. It handled relatively good but installing new Koni shocks and a new set of ball joints has made it a pleasure to drive.
I also installed a Banks Power Pak that boosted the HP and torque which made a huge difference.
I'm not sure I would have gone this far had this coach been on a FL chassis. I've not driven a FL of this vintage but other owners I've met and talked to tell me they are not a great handling chassis at best. IMO, if your not happy with the bones, don't spend more money on the house to end up with a coach that your not satisfied with from a handing standpoint.
If the 08 fits your requirements as far as floor plan etc, and it passes a thorough mechanical inspection, in the long run it's your best best. IMHO,,,,,

Good luck with your choice whichever way you decide.


http://www.irv2.com/forums/f103/awes...ml#post1328098
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Old 01-30-2018, 06:46 PM   #3
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Just a couple of observations. First, 29K miles isn't even fully broken in on a diesel pusher. If that is the actual mileage, the coach really hasn't been used that much. I wouldn't assume that low mileage is related to problems that kept the coach out of service, however. There could be any number of other reasons that don't reflect negatively on the coach. Something to check out, though.

Then, there's the matter of cost. Much of your decision will revolve around what you'll have to pay for the 2008 DSDP and what, if any, trade-in or resale value is in left your 2004 DSDP. I would think that putting any significant money into refurbishing the older coach will not be recovered in any future trade-in or sale.

Then, how many miles do you have on the current coach? Are you getting to the point of needing new tires? Engine work? Etc., etc. You need to factor that into your decision.

In a 2008 DSDP, you will have the first generation Comfort Drive and that will make a big difference in driveability.

Only you can evaluate the actual condition and price of the 2008. Can't help you with that. If it were me, however, I would not put any significant money into a 2004 model unless I was very sure I was going to use it for at least several more years.

Good luck on whatever you decide.

BTW, what are you racing? Years ago, I was involved in both modified and sprint car racing.

TJ
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Old 01-30-2018, 07:13 PM   #4
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Our 2004 is nearing the end of the tires life which we put on and it is going to need more and more mechanical. We havenít had too many issues and our coach has about 72000 miles on it.
I was thinking the same on the 2008 mileage - especially the last owner. Did it have problems and thatís why after only 4 years - they decided to go new?? But as we all know people upgrade for different reasons over time so we will never know.
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Old 01-30-2018, 07:16 PM   #5
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Your renovation is awesome - I just took a peek. You make a point - Spartan Chassis which we have always heard is way better! I wonít even drive our MH anymore and my husband really wants me to share in the driving. So probably getting a coach with the Spartan Chassis and/or At least Comfort Drive is going to make a big difference. It woudnít be bad to get a bit more HP either.
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Old 01-30-2018, 07:18 PM   #6
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Oh forgot to answer the question on racing. It has been GO-Karts on several tracks, SCCA Sports Car racing, and next up looks like Vintage Car racing (if hubby ever gets his car done).
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Old 01-31-2018, 09:13 PM   #7
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No records

So dealer has no maintenance records on the 2008 except last owner told them it got new batteries and we verified it has new tires with date codes 11/17 & 12/17. I did more digging on this so called 1 owner coach. It was repossessed about 3 years ago and sold at auction. The last owner used/drove it on a dealer plate/stored in side for the last 3ish years. So coach will need a very thorough inspection.
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Old 01-31-2018, 09:32 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SMount10 View Post
So dealer has no maintenance records on the 2008 except last owner told them it got new batteries and we verified it has new tires with date codes 11/17 & 12/17. I did more digging on this so called 1 owner coach. It was repossessed about 3 years ago and sold at auction. The last owner used/drove it on a dealer plate/stored in side for the last 3ish years. So coach will need a very thorough inspection.
Do not walk away from this deal...run! With that much obfustication already discovered, there is almost certainly more. And, repossession is a wildly-waving red flag. None of this points to a positive outcome.

TJ
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Old 02-01-2018, 12:42 AM   #9
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Hello SMount 10
Spend money on the 2004 or spend it on the 2008 - "That is the Question?" I have a 2008 Kountry Star with the ISL 400HP - same as the Dutch Star but 25HP less. The torque on this engine is fabulous - lot of pushing power for the hills, even pulling a car 4 down. Sound like you are on the fence about the power train. Step 1 - get an oil analysis done. You could also get one done on the transmission. Amazon has the kits and done by one of the leading places in the USA for fluid analysis. This as least will give you a heads up on whether or not there is a problem. Sitting for 3 years does not help, since engine seals need to be worked and lubricated. However, if after an extensive "test drive" and let the coach sit for at least 1/2 hour, you should be able to look under the engine for any tell tale leaks. You can also get an experience mobile tech to do a "level 3" inspection - about $1500 to exercise every system on the coach for proper operation. This will also include fluid analysis. I have the Spartan Chassis and Comfort Drive - Simply Wonderful! Last but not least - whatevery the decision, make sure you are going to use it for at least the next 5 years to get your ROI out of it.
Best of Luck
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Old 02-01-2018, 06:43 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tranquil Jim View Post
Do not walk away from this deal...run! With that much obfustication already discovered, there is almost certainly more. And, repossession is a wildly-waving red flag. None of this points to a positive outcome.

TJ
x2! You've already been lied to once. That would be "once and done" for me. There are other comparable rigs out there without the suspect provenance. Just takes time.

BTW, which Newmar dealer?

Also, what is your approx remodel budget for your current rig, should you decide to keep it? I'm in the midst of updating our '04 DS. Just completed new carpeting and will remove the headbanger, placing the TV in a combo lift cabinet/desk across from the sofa.

Let us know what you decide and best of luck.
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Old 02-01-2018, 05:02 PM   #11
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Welcome to the forum and hunt for Newmar.
If you need info on remodeling or upgrading stuff many owners here on forum have links I have saved in QT's #3, TV's upgraded to LCD's, furnishings replaced, SPK64 new floors, and replacement or upgrades of important items in a DP with routine maintenance for a DP.
Section for upgrading all lighting to LED's and many more in QT's # 3.
If you go into QT's 1&2 to near end of link you can see what I did to my coach for idea's.
Here is a link you need for what ever coach you get to get information for it.
Good luck in finding a coach and enjoy the remodeling project.
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Old 02-01-2018, 08:08 PM   #12
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Okay lots of great replies. Thank you!
When we bought our 2004 DS 10 years ago - the dealer we bought it from was awesome and is not a Newmar dealer. No funny business. This is a Newmar dealer and just doesnít feel right. I am not going to post the dealer name. They should have been forth coming.
I think we are likely going to pass on this. I have made no deposit / nothing. It is tough to find these type of coaches where we are located so we may just travel farther to do it.
From a remodel point of view we already had to replace our overhead TV (the bracket broke on the original). Needed to go anyway. Our interior is not in bad shape at all itís just not my style. It is gently used. We have the 330HP on a Freightliner chassis. I think I would be more willing to invest in it if it was a Spartan/370HP.
What I canít change - no second slide in bedroom, no comfort drive, no more HP (maybe a little), and no Spartan Chassis and many other perks on 2008 like whole house inverter (ours is wimpy) etc.
Anyway I am sure another coach will come up that will fit our needs.
We will keep looking Nationwide.
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Old 02-02-2018, 08:23 PM   #13
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You need to look in our Classifieds some Newmars in there that may suite you.
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Old 02-03-2018, 04:03 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SMount10 View Post
Hi all,

Just starting to get back into these RV forums. It has been a long time and want to participate more going forward.

So I know a lot folks ask for opinions when deciding to upgrade or not. So here goes. We are seasonal RVers but we tow a car trailer at times for racing and we tow a GMC Yukon XL the rest of time - so we are limited to units that can tow up to 10,000 lbs. Thatís how we actually ended up in a Newmar and we will not change manufacturers - love the quality. Whenever we think we will we decide to change - we come back to no. We have owned our 2004 DSDP 3809 on freightliner chassis w/330 CAT for 10 years now. It has been a great coach but it has some limitations and we want some improvements. We also no longer have kids along so can opt for a different layout and want to go longer distances. Everything in our coach works but it doesnít handle the best - gets blown around on the highway. Upgrades:- One is I would like to upgrade the flooring - hate the white rug through out (other than kitchen area and bath where we have oak). Also the bedroom is tight - 1 slide. Decor I have never liked - so valences and fabrics need update. We have Newmar working on an estimate to make some upgrades (list is pretty long) and there are some things we wonít get no matter what - the added slide in the bedroom and comfort drive.
We did take a look at a 2008 DSDP 4035 on Spartan Chassis with Comfort Drive this past weekend. Drove really nice and noticeable change with the comfort drive, spartan chassis, and large 425HP engine. It only has 29000 miles on it but that is low and that always worries us. The Newmar dealer first told us it was a 1 owner coach, stored indoors but I found out after it has had 2 owners. Exterior is in beautiful shape overall. Interior is pretty nice and colors we want. The only thing is two sets of fogged windows (we have had none on our 2004), but spoke to Newmar and these can be changed. Coach has newer tires - dated 11/17 and 12/17 - so just put on recently before traded in. The last owner only had it 4 years and just bought a new one. They only put like 5000 miles on it in that time (is that because they had tons of problems?). Batteries unsure at this point and I havenít gone through it with fine tooth comb yet. No noticeable damage. I donít think it has maintenance records but have not checked. My only real hold back on this one is - dealer is too high (but can haggle more with them), it is over 40í+, and it is still 10 years old. On the other hand has what we want and wonít hit the budget too much. I feel like pouring money into our 2004 on decor is probably not worth it but then again it is the coach we know and we still wonít have some upgrades we can get in the 2008 - another is larger refrigerator (canít fit one in ours but could add outside fridge). I should add we boondock often at race tracks and other places - so all electric or residential fridge we are trying to avoid (newer coaches all seem to have residential refrigerators now).
Questions - has anyone done a Reno with Newmar - was it worth it (Floors/decor) in your eyes?
Does anyone own a 2008 DSDP 4035 or other 2008 DSDP - how has it been and are there other issues we should be aware of?
Or should we just go newer?
Thank you.
Just wishing you the best of good luck.
I am in a similar situation re my 2004 Dutch Star....
I am considering an upgrade...
However i know what i have.....I fear the unknown....
Even though there are unknowns both ways....i am not rushing into changing....yet

Again...best of good luck to you
and shop for renovations....just like a house...one handyman or flooring company can be high priced and another low price and a high price does not always mean high quality.
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Originally Posted by 007";4020531]You need to look in our [B][URL="http://www.irv2.com/rvclassifieds/
Classifieds[/URL][/B] some Newmars in there that may suite you.
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