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Old 02-10-2021, 04:28 PM   #1
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My first RV? 1992 American Eagle

Hi guys, I'm in the South Georgia /North Florida area and just joined the group. I've been reading posts for the past couple of days as I'm looking at a 1992 American Eagle 38A. It has been parked for about 4 years outdoors. It supposedly has less than 50k miles. The engine runs well (300 hp Cummins with Allison 6 speed). It has had roof leaks and the headliner is stained. Owner says he sealed it with Gorilla seal and it does not seem to be leaking now. (I've never heard of Gorilla Seal - gorilla glue , yes)

My main concerns: the electrical system seems buggy. The jack light comes on when trying to shift to reverse and sometimes forward. Which kicks the transmission out of gear. The alternator is not charging so I suspect some of the bugs are due to low voltage. But it looks like someone has rerouted and changed quite a few systems. There are some loose wires hanging out under the dash and the ignition switch is completely out of the dash panel. Everything looks like it needs a two day wash down with a power sprayer.

The Onan genny is not working - no clue.

I am an aircraft mechanic and have been working on cars since I was 13 (I'm 54 now) so these things do not really scare me as long as schematics and manuals are available so I don't have to trace every wire and learn every system front to rear.

There is also some structural rust on the engine cover supports (the covers themselves seem to be fiberglass and are OK. Frame looks good.

I'm trying to put a number on it so I don't overpay. Can anyone help me with a wild guess and also comment on availability of schematics etc?

Thanks in advance!
Kevin
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Old 02-10-2021, 04:45 PM   #2
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Hi Kevin! Welcome to IRV2! We're sure glad you joined us!

Hopefully someone will be along that can help!

Good luck, happy trails, and God bless!
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Old 02-10-2021, 05:01 PM   #3
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Welcome to the Forum, you have come to the right place.


The situation you describe does not sound good. When you can visually see and experience a variety of problems and know the coach has been sitting for 4 years outside it sounds like it might not be a good purchase even if it was sold to you for $1.


We are fortunate to have some 92 Eagle owners here that will likely chime in. If electrical systems have been rigged they are the guys that likely have the schematics.


Good luck!
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Old 02-10-2021, 05:52 PM   #4
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Thank you. He definitely wants more than a dollar. just wondering if this is an option for me to find an entry level Diesel Pusher that I can improve over time but get mechanically reliable so I can start enjoying it while working on cosmetics
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Old 02-10-2021, 06:15 PM   #5
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We had a 92 Eagle. It was a good coach but we learned it took too many $500 visits to both the mechanic and the RV dealer. It was well designed and well engineered but no schematics and lots of wires. Ours had about 60,000 miles and we sold it for less than $40,000. This was about 10 years ago so I wouldn't guess they have gone up in value. A quick check with NADA shows $8-10,000. I would think that price would be with everything working.
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Old 02-10-2021, 11:20 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MtCamper View Post
We had a 92 Eagle. It was a good coach but we learned it took too many $500 visits to both the mechanic and the RV dealer. It was well designed and well engineered but no schematics and lots of wires. Ours had about 60,000 miles and we sold it for less than $40,000. This was about 10 years ago so I wouldn't guess they have gone up in value. A quick check with NADA shows $8-10,000. I would think that price would be with everything working.
Thanks, that's interesting. I haven't found a diesel pusher under 10 grand anywhere. Well there's one on eBay right now that was at about 9 Grand but it doesn't have any flooring and is in the middle of an unfinished renovation. I guess NADA and market can be a good bit apart. I spent a couple of hours scouring for sale ads and 15k is about the cheapest I found quickly jumping up from there. I may just need to wait a while. Is the market high right now?
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Old 02-11-2021, 04:44 AM   #7
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Welcome!
I am thinking that NADA has no clue about old RV's. Way too many variables to consider.
We bought a 91 Eagle about 4 years ago and after a lightning strike to the shore power post in a campground and calling the Fleetwood factory discovered that there are no wiring diagrams. Those early models, according to the person I spoke to, were hand wired without much of a diagram so no 2 were exactly the same. Close but not the same. On the wiring note, the electrical transfer switch, if itís the original will probable need to be replaced with a modern style one.

We paid $18500 for ours 4 years ago but everything worked perfectly except the cruise control and the dash A/C and was in overall really great condition. A few stains in the headliner but we had a steam carpet cleaning guy make a visit and that was pretty much gone.

I'm not sure of how handy you are but if youíre like me and fix almost anything and you can get it for cheap it might not be a bad thing. The Eagle is a great coach and well built.

Will for sure need tires, batteries right now. Probably air suspension bags, air brake valves down the road.

Leveling jacks have a sensor that tells the system they are fully retracted. My guess is that they need to have the rams sprayed with silicone so they can retract fully. Also check for a buildup of dirt on the base plate of the jacks that prevents them from retracting all the way.

Really, Gorilla seal on the roof, sounds to me like not such a great idea considering there are products that arenít that expensive and are made for the roof and do a really great job.

The ignition switch can be replaced without much trouble. The generator might be a $$$ problem, they can be expensive.

As far as an offering price, too many things unknown. Go low because you could spend a lot of money on repairs.
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Old 02-11-2021, 05:56 AM   #8
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The 92 AC was upgraded from it's little brother the 91 --1st year.
More HP- 6 spd MD3060- Bullet proof Transmission. The items you mentioned are all repairable. I have All of the manuals and diagrams on the Coach and the DKD Generator-which I might mention is also the best Onan ever built, they'll outlast the newer Onans by far. Plus its on a Slide out.
As far as an honest value ? Make a short List to put it on the road- Tires- Full Eng service- Full Genny service -Roof repaired ect- My guess that number is $4000 to $6000 deducting your labor. One approach is estimate the value if you parted it out- the Cummins 6CTA 8.3 -probably worth 3 to 4 K--The Allison MD3060 another 3K-ect.- Let the seller give you a price and go from there.
Good Luck
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Old 02-11-2021, 06:11 AM   #9
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NHRA225 has the right approach. Show the seller just how much it will take to get the coach back on the road. We all tend to become emotionally attached to our rigs and price them beyond reality. I agree NADA prices are really lower than asking prices I see, but lots of people trust NADA and I have taken a print out with me when buying to show sellers and it's often helpful. Be sure to report back to us and let us know where you ended up on this.
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Old 02-11-2021, 07:35 AM   #10
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An old coach like this can be a real money pit. If you can do most of the work yourself, it will save a bunch of $$$ but it will take time to sort out all of the electrical issues. You will run across the problem that here are many components no longer available for a 30 year old coach.

I would plan to spend $10k to $15k on repairs getting it road worthy. Big ticket items can be brakes, tires, A/C, furnace, water heater, refrigerator, roof and leaks. Plan to change all fluids and service everything.

Ken
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Old 02-11-2021, 10:24 PM   #11
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Well I guess I will keep looking. Someone else bought it today before I could get over to make an offer. Thank you very much for the insights. I'm a little disappointed that I missed out but it it's going to be a tremendous amount of work. Maybe I'll find one that's a good deal that I won't have to completely rebuild. Again thank you all for your advice and comments! I'm not sure what it eventually sold for but I think somewhere around $6000 which sounds like a really great price to me but if it would have taken another 10 to 15 to get it roadworthy I'm better off buying one that's already roadworthy. Well like the wise man says there's always another deal
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Old 02-16-2021, 08:30 AM   #12
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welcome to the forum, I just joined myself. I just purchased a 1998 American dream just a few weeks ago. While it needs some work, I am looking forward to restoring the coach. It runs great and most everything works. What I discovered by joining the forum and some groups is that a lot of the things I am finding with the coach are common. So ask away on the forum(s) because folks are very helpful and insightful.
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