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Old 06-01-2016, 03:32 PM   #1
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New To Us '09 DSDP 4043 & First Trip FL to AK Success

After lurking in this forum and doing research galore for the past year, my husband and I decided we wanted a Newmar, a DP, and a floor plan with bunks since we have 2 young girls.

With this being our first RV, we decided to look for a used model in the 4-8 year old range (we wanted Comfort Drive). We wanted to make sure we loved the "lifestyle" as much as we believed we would in our minds, could handle the required upkeep/mechanics, would use it as much as we intended, etc. before plunging into something brand new.

We were thrilled to find a 2009 Dutch Star 4043 that had the bunk mod option for sale through a private owner. My husband flew to check it out and we quickly scooped it up knowing it could potentially be a rare find. We officially bought it a couple of months ago, but had to wait until the whole family could fly to Minnesota to pick it up and drive it back to our home in Alaska.

We also found a ready to go toad vehicle in Florida, a 2012 CRV, which we purchased sight unseen shortly later.

We began our adventure in early May, and after picking up our new coach north of Minneapolis, we headed to Florida to get the toad vehicle. And if you are going to Florida with 2 small children, you might as well take them to Disney when you can stay at Fort Wilderness, get to know your new coach, and work out any issues before making a 4700 mile journey back to Anchorage.

We did have a few issues during that first 1500 mile journey from MN to FL. AC#1 quit on us (yes - as Alaskans headed to 95 degree weather), and then we had a hissing emergency brake valve that led to smoking/burning brake smell during our last 300 or so miles as we rolled into Orlando which led to us not being able to disengage the emergency brake. I'm very glad we already had a CoachNet subscription in place! I also have great things to say about Independence RV, they were very helpful and knowledgeable. My husband had them repair one of the mechanical slide locks, install a Dometic freezer (our coach was already wired for it) and a digital replacement for a busted bat-wing antennae.

On the second leg of our trip (FL to AK), we experienced a few more issues including the rear view camera failing and various slide issues among other things. It was a little frustrating, but we expected we would have some issues throughout our journey and we sort of chalked it up to working out bugs and an overall learning process about our new coach.

We were very impressed with how well the engine and chassis performed, even through some very bumpy spots through the Yukon and eastern Alaska. We were able to drive for 8-12 hours a day when needed with no issues as far as comfort or fatigue. The floorplan is very comfortable in "drive" mode so even with 2 small children, long days of driving passed by with ease.

Overall we spent 22 nights in our new coach and had an absolutely wonderful adventure and were able to make some great family memories. We are very happy with our decision to purchase a Newmar DP!

We'll be using our coach for weekend trips and one longer trip each summer. But after our 3 week adventure, I already seriously wish I could be back on the road again!
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Old 06-01-2016, 04:01 PM   #2
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Sounds like a great adventure. We left Anchorage after 8 years of living there in 2009 after I retired from the Air Force and moved to Missouri. We actually drove from Alaska to the lower 48 and back twice while stationed there. It is a wonderful part of the world. We plan to visit Alaska in a few years. Happy travels and you should have many joyous years with the Newmar DP. I know we plan to.

John
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Old 06-01-2016, 06:44 PM   #3
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Congratulations on the "new" coach. Sorry to hear about the problems, but it appears you expected some and handled them well. I know you will really enjoy the Newmar, we do.
Lots of good experience and knowledge on this forum so don't be shy in asking or posting.
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Old 06-01-2016, 08:35 PM   #4
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Welcome to the Newmar family. We sure do love our Dutch Star DP also. Happy travels, and keep safe😉
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Old 06-01-2016, 09:17 PM   #5
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Congratulations on your new DS. It beautiful looking. Sorry about your problems, but I know your gonna love yours, as I do mine.

Welcome to the Newmar family.

Happy Trailss
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Old 06-01-2016, 09:27 PM   #6
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We've had two DSDP's and should have ordered a third. The last DSDP ('02 4090) was the most trouble free RV we've ever owned even after 13 years!
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