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Old 01-30-2019, 03:29 PM   #1
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American Coach advice

My wife and I are planning to retire within 2 years and are looking forward to traveling this great country for months at a time. After searching the internet and going to shows we are leaning hard toward a 2004-2008 American Coach, 40'or maybe 42'. They seem to fit my idea of quality, livability and budget for extended travel. Planning to pull a Jeep Wrangler and wanted something with most of the comforts of home. Are there any issues with these years I may have missed? Any advice or recommendations are appreciated.
Thanks, Stan
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Old 01-30-2019, 04:01 PM   #2
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We have a 2008 American Eagle 42F. Absolutely love it. The woodwork cannot be matched on any other coaches we have looked at. We like the heat and unlimited hot water from the Aqua-hot. One caution, if you look at an AE with a Cummins ISL engine, ask about if the EGR cooler has been upgraded. If not, set aside $4,500.00 to do it at Cummins. The EGR cooler is a known defect on those motors. 95% of them go out between 45K and 55K. Cummins replaces with a larger ISX cooler and a retrofit kit. We added a Samsung residential fridge and a new microwave/convention oven. Previous owner put a kingsize bed in.
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Old 01-30-2019, 05:55 PM   #3
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We have a 2005 Revolution LE and love it. Has everything except an aquaheat
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Old 01-30-2019, 07:57 PM   #4
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Look at a Mandalay.Had a 05 Mandalay. Great quality. I have a 2016 American. Quality is the same.
Bought the American and my wife didn't think the 300k was worth it. It was 11 years newer.
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Old 01-30-2019, 08:28 PM   #5
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2006 is the last year that the engines are without emissions controls of Dpf and egr so less high dollar stuff to fail . Ours is a 06 American Traditions 40 H , 2nd owner now has 26000 miles and garage kept.
Only caution I can offer on any coach with double pane windows is they fail and repair or replacement is expensive so inspect them for fogging. Good luck.
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Old 01-30-2019, 08:30 PM   #6
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2011 American Eagle here I agree about the woodwork. We have Cherry cabinets and it's all real wood 1/2" is the thinnest but most of the cases are 3/4". We joke that the cabinets in our Coach are better than our house.

If you look at one with an ISX confirm that it has an updated head. The ISX is a great engine but when the emissions were updated the valves had an issue with erosion. If it didn't deduct 20k and have it changed. It will be like a new motor at that point.
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Old 01-31-2019, 08:56 AM   #7
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Quote:
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Only caution I can offer on any coach with double pane windows is they fail and repair or replacement is expensive so inspect them for fogging. Good luck.
All our windows were fogged. We had them removed, repaired, and reinstalled, in one day. Dr Fog in Searcy, Arkansas did it. Great people to work with!
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Old 01-31-2019, 12:53 PM   #8
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We drove a 2004 American Tradition for 12 years and really enjoyed it. As good quality as any high end competitor (which alas is not to say "perfect") and still turned heads in a campground when we sold it in 2016. The new owner is just as pleased. If you are looking for an older, high end model, the American Coach brands a good choice, especially before the 2007 EPA diesel changes took effect.


In a similar class are the Newmar Essex and Mountainaire, Tiffin Allegro Bus, Country Coach, Travel Supreme and Monaco Dynasty & SIgnature.
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Old 02-03-2019, 02:21 PM   #9
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Thanks

Thank you to all who replied, I'm keeping this info on a journal to use in our hunt for a coach. Never thought about things like fogged Windows to watch for. I'm sure I will use this wealth of experience in the future. As a lifelong boater I'm very familiar with the problems arising from going to larger and more complex systems.
Thanks again, Stan
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Old 02-03-2019, 02:53 PM   #10
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You mentioned looking at 40' and 42' coaches. The biggest difference will be that most 40' coaches will have a single rear axle, most 42' and longer, will have tags.
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Old 02-05-2019, 12:50 AM   #11
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I have a 2004 Eagle 42R that I have only had a few months. I bought it cheap knowing it needed some work. My son and I have fixed or replaced a lot of the problems it had.
Really the only expensive thing that we have come across so far is the Girard awning. The fabric was ripped and the motor was out. I decided not to tackle it ourselves, have it a highly reputable shop now. They just called today and it was going to be 3500 to 4000 to fix it. Could totally replace with new complete unit for 4500. I went with the new one. So condition of awning is certainly something to consider when purchasing one.
Probabaly goes without saying but check date code on tires and batteries. Those two items add up fast if need replaced.
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Old 02-05-2019, 03:33 PM   #12
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Those high dollar Girards are really nice. However, most of the people we know do not use them very much...including us. Sure they have the auto retract, but by the time a puff of wind hits them and they start to roll up, it's too late to prevent damage. We only use ours when it's very hot, there is no wind and none forecast. At the first sign of a breeze/storm, we bring them in.
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Old 02-07-2019, 03:23 PM   #13
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We have had our 2003 American Eagle for just over 2 years. Ours is a 42 with the Cummins ISM 500hp. We love it. We have done about 25,000 miles and used it weather from 0 degrees to 100 degrees. We pull a Jeep Wrangler Unlimited. Would love to trade to bigger or newer but can't justify it cause we love our bus (Nomad). Still learning it. Happy to share pics, experiences, learnings if you like. Email me if interested.
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