RV Trip Planning Discussions

Go Back   iRV2 Forums > THE OWNER'S CORNER FORUMS > National RV Owner's Forum
Click Here to Login
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 08-04-2016, 08:47 PM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 17
New National Sea Breeze Owner

I have just purchased an 04 National Sea Breeze and I am new to a W-22 GM 8.1L chassis. My coach has 44,000 miles and appears to have been reasonably well cared for. The engine and Allison transmission seem to operate flawlessly. Here is my question. My only experience prior to this was a DP, and I am having trouble relaxing and trusting this coach to take any long trips. Is there a general consensus as to the dependability of these units, specifically the W-22 8.1? I guess you could say it's a little late to be asking that question, but here I am. I would like to take it cross country which would involve some pretty good hills and I am considering pulling a PT Cruiser on a dolly although that has not been decided. I would sure appreciate any thoughts including the good, the bad and the ugly.
Carl
__________________

C Hammonds is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 RV Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

iRV2.com RV Community - Are you about to start a new improvement on your RV or need some help with some maintenance? Do you need advice on what products to buy? Or maybe you can give others some advice? No matter where you fit in you'll find that iRV2 is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with other RV owners, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create an RV blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 08-05-2016, 09:04 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
trode's Avatar
 
National RV Owners Club
Ford Super Duty Owner
Carolina Campers
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Wilmington, NC
Posts: 836
Quote:
Originally Posted by C Hammonds View Post
I have just purchased an 04 National Sea Breeze and I am new to a W-22 GM 8.1L chassis. My coach has 44,000 miles and appears to have been reasonably well cared for. The engine and Allison transmission seem to operate flawlessly. Here is my question. My only experience prior to this was a DP, and I am having trouble relaxing and trusting this coach to take any long trips. Is there a general consensus as to the dependability of these units, specifically the W-22 8.1? I guess you could say it's a little late to be asking that question, but here I am. I would like to take it cross country which would involve some pretty good hills and I am considering pulling a PT Cruiser on a dolly although that has not been decided. I would sure appreciate any thoughts including the good, the bad and the ugly.
Carl
I own a 2004 Sea Breeze on the Ford F-53 chassis 22K and v-10 so are not equipped to tell you about the WH chassis, but from what I hear has more power and the Allison is supposed to be bullet proof. I have about 47,000 on mine now, very well maintained miles, oil changes always at 3,000 synthetic blend and did Transmission fluid service at 30,000 and will do again at 60,000 or 3 years whichever comes first, other thing I did to mine was flush and refill brake fluid. Assume you are aware of brake recall on those Work Horse chassis and it has been done?

Regarding coach, Sea Breeze was mid level units for National, but by far superior to many other Class A gassers I have looked at, and I looked at many. Construction quality, fit and finish, general appeal far and above many others.

Point being, I would have no hesitation to head out in mine cross country tomorrow, in fact wish I could! Hills are a challenge but take your time and you should be fine, coming down worse than up to me since little engine braking like you have been used to in a DP. Use the gears and spare the brake and stop when necessary. Hope you know age of tires and condition, would be my biggest concern on a cross country trip. Wouldn't even head out on tires more than 6 years old.

Hope you do it, and have a great trip.

__________________

__________________
Tom and Patty
The "Rode Crew"
2004 National RV, Seabreeze 1341, F-53 22K, Chevy Malibu toad.
trode is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2016, 10:41 AM   #3
Senior Member
 
WSRG's Avatar
 
National RV Owners Club
Workhorse Chassis Owner
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 297
I bought our 2005 Seabreeze LX about 7 years ago with 2500 miles on the coach. It is a W-22, 8.1 just like yours. We now are approaching 90000 miles. As far as I'm concerned, its one of the best coaches for quality and design that money can buy. No major issues in 7 years. Just make sure that any recalls have been taken care of [brake calipers], and that the tires are in good shape. If the tires are over 5 years old and have good tread, check them for weather cracks on the sidewalls and in the tread grooves.

Good luck

Bill
__________________
BILL & CINDA SCHWARTZ
2005 SEABREEZE LX 8360
W-22 WORKHORSE 8.1 LTR.
BEAUTIFUL PHOENIX, AZ
WSRG is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2016, 10:46 PM   #4
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 17
New Sea Breeze Owner

Thanks for your great comments. That gives me a little more confidence. My tires are essentially new so that shouldn't be an issue. I am pretty confident that the brake recall was done, however I believe my shocks are original, and new ones would help the handling. Driving one of these rigs takes a little getting used to but it's manageable. I make my living designing equipment, and unfortunately, that makes me look at everything as a potential for failure. It's a curse. thanks again!
C Hammonds is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2016, 10:51 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Yakima, WA
Posts: 543
Been pulling a PT on a dolly for 11 years thousands of miles at a time, trouble free with my W22 chassis Dolphin.

Enjoy yer 'breeze!
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	image.jpg
Views:	79
Size:	317.0 KB
ID:	135026  
__________________
GySgt USMC (Ret) '79~'99
2005 National RV Dolphin Limited 5342
Workhorse W-22
Civdiv99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2016, 05:37 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 126
I do not recall any 8.1 engine failures and only 2 Allison trans failures in 30 years at a GMC Truck dealership in Flotida. We saw very few coolant leak, ignition problems or electrical problems. The trans issues we have seen with allisons were mostly caused by abuse or neglect at high mileage. Allisons are close to bullet proof. Your DP probably had an allison trans in it. Good synthetic oil and trans fluid maintnance should be performed. trans external filter change every 25k miles and internal filter at 50k.
__________________
Fred & Darla 2000 Tropi-cal and 2016 Chevy
Sonic toad
FredV is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2016, 06:47 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 3,151
Quote:
Originally Posted by C Hammonds View Post
I have just purchased an 04 National Sea Breeze and I am new to a W-22 GM 8.1L chassis . . . My only experience prior to this was a DP, and I am having trouble relaxing and trusting this coach to take any long trips. Is there a general consensus as to the dependability of these units, specifically the W-22 8.1?
I went from a 2004 SeaBreeze like yours to a 2001 DP.

Engine & transmission-wise I think the W-22 w/Allison & the 8.1L engine will do you fine.

However, ride-wise . . . well, one of the reasons I switched to a DP was the wandering ride of the SeaBreeze. On long trips the SeaBreeze was an effort to drive. By contrast, our 2001 Newmar is almost effortless.
__________________
2001 Mountain Aire DP 4095 & 2008 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon
DISH TV for RVs
TechWriter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2016, 07:45 AM   #8
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 17
In answer to the last two comments, I appreciate that input. I did choose this rig because of the 8.1 and Allison. It's good to hear the general consensus on their dependability. My concern is all the little things that can and will happen on a 12 year old coach. A little leak or loose wire can strand you just as badly as a thrown rod. I have been working through issues since I purchased the coach and hopefully I have about got it de-bugged and ready to travel. A hot water heater, dash air compressor, belt tensioner on the engine, and gen set gas pickup gone bad. For that I am installing a separate 18 gallon auxiliary tank just behind the main tank with external fill and vent just like the main tank dedicated to the gen set. I couldn't find anyone that would drop the main tank and fix the pickup. You are sure right on the handling. Driving one of these rigs is more like herding it down the road. I had a 40' Foretravel before and there is no comparison. On the downside though if I took it to a shop for service, it was $ 1,500+ just to service all the filters and fluids from front to rear. So, all that comfort comes at a price. I wish I had it back now, some more of that 20/20 hindsight. Hopefully for our limited needs at this time, the Breeze will be a reasonable alternative. I guess it is all part of the gamble of buying something 12 years old, it just takes a period of bringing it up to snuff. I sure appreciate all the comments on this forum. I trust user's wisdom and experience much more than shop "experts". So far, I haven't found anyone that I really trust. They are all figuring it out as they go.
Carl
C Hammonds is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2016, 03:57 PM   #9
Member
 
Coloradodude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Craig, Colorado
Posts: 76
Welcome

I bought my 2004 Sea breeze 8.1 last fall. I love it. It had 31000 miles now I have almost 33000. Search my posts and you can read some of the things I have done to it.

Have the coach right where I want it. Love it. On the engine side I have a had a few issues this summer. I improved AC by installing an isolation valve

Read this post

http://www.irv2.com/forums/f103/dash...le-293824.html

I have had an O2 sensor go bad. I recommend you change out plug wires and plugs and carry Mass Air Flow cleaner with you. In my research Mass air flow sensor and plug wires are 2 common fail points with our Motorhomes.

Other owners have also said keep gas tank full as fuel pump can get hot if tank get low. Next year, I am going to have my mechanic drop gas tank and change out fuel pump and fuel line to generator. The fuel line to generator is a common fail point as you now know. I have had to splice mine.
Be sure to change out the fuel filter and carry an extra.

Overall I love our rig. Keep me posted with anything you learn, I will do the same.
__________________
2004 National RV Sea Breeze 8341 35'
GM 8.1 Vortec Allison 1000
Coloradodude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2016, 09:28 PM   #10
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 17
Great information. I read the thread on the dash air and commented on it there. I did install the same valves in both to and from hoses to the heater core. That helped, but still only cool, not cold. So, looks like the expansion valve or dryer may be next. Not sure. I do have to get it fixed though, it is hard for one roof unit to keep up when driving. I hate to have to run both units when under way. I have heard about the mass flow sensor and plug wires. I wonder what one of those cost to take as a spare. I need to research the item since I have not had any experience with kind of equipment before. I would like to stay in touch and hope you will do the same. I have done some other things to the coach but wont bore you with that in this post. We like this coach. It is the perfect size for us and sure hope we can get it leveled out and on the road. Thanks again!
C Hammonds is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2016, 10:03 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
National RV Owners Club
Newmar Owners Club
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Benicia, Calif.
Posts: 388
We have a 2005 Sea Breeze with the work horse. We have put over 20,000 miles on since we got it 5 years ago and have had no problems what so ever. We had hendersons line-up in Oregon install Koni shocks and some work on the chassis so it wouldn't wander, also put on a safety plus. It drives nice with no push from wind or semi's passing us. One more thing, it is loud going up grades and coming down grades when using my grade brake. We love ours, unfortunately we want 40' and diesel so will be selling ours when we get back from this adventure.
__________________
Tom & Dorry
2017 Dutch Star 4369
towing 2013 Honda CR-V
Benicia Tom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2016, 07:43 PM   #12
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 17
Good for you.......good luck on the DP. I'm sure you will love it. By the way, what is a grade brake?
C Hammonds is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2016, 07:57 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
rjsupersonic's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 609
You have a great motor home. We have 30 thousand miles on ours, only issue I had was a rear pinion seal leak. We have the Ford Chassis but I have heard many good things from other National owners on the Workhorse chassis. National made a great product I wish they would come back... safe travels.
__________________
2007 National Sea Breeze
rjsupersonic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2016, 09:34 AM   #14
Senior Member
 
National RV Owners Club
Newmar Owners Club
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Benicia, Calif.
Posts: 388
Quote:
Originally Posted by C Hammonds View Post
Good for you.......good luck on the DP. I'm sure you will love it. By the way, what is a grade brake?
On the right side of your instrument panel there is a rocker switch that says grade brake. When going down steep hills or grades you tap your break and it down shifts for you. When going down a steep grades I try to start it at about 50 then tap the break, when I hit 62 I bring it back down to 50 as quick as possible without throwing yourself through the wind shield.😳😮 The point is not to ride the breaks.
__________________

__________________
Tom & Dorry
2017 Dutch Star 4369
towing 2013 Honda CR-V
Benicia Tom is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
national



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Sea breeze or sea view 41pu National RV Owner's Forum 2 06-03-2015 08:55 AM
New Albuquerque National Sea Breeze 8321 Owner CyndiJohnson New Member Check-In 19 07-26-2010 08:13 AM
National RV Sea Breeze Bus Diesel Water Tank Problem Rodm National RV Owner's Forum 1 09-08-2009 07:19 PM
National Sea Breeze Diagrams joecamp National RV Owner's Forum 1 02-10-2009 02:13 PM
Sea Breeze & Sea Breeze LX... Difference Zogman National RV Owner's Forum 9 08-31-2008 03:40 PM

» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:49 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×