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Old 10-23-2018, 12:07 PM   #1
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Monaco vs Beaver

I am a fifth wheeler who is looking to transition to motorhomes. I have found a 2006 Beaver Thunder and a 2006 Monaco Dynasty. Both have the approximate 37k miles and 4 slides and appear to be well maintained. Does anyone have a opinion about the quality comparison between the two coaches?
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Old 10-23-2018, 12:30 PM   #2
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Hi BltnRv; Since I do not own either, but have been a Monaco owner since 2003 and I toured the Beaver factory in Bend Oregon every other year until they moved the Beaver production over to the Monaco factory in Coburg Oregon in the mid 2000's. Both coaches are quality built. Beaver was always know for the quality of the wood work in the coach. That was one of the first things I always noticed when entering a Beaver coach. I think they are on the same Roadmaster chassis. Monaco used Cummin's engines and Beaver used Caterpillar. IMHO, both are great well built coaches. I am sure in time you will hear from owners of both. Do the normal homework of inspections of all the systems of each as well as tire age and battery replacement. Ask lots of questions here and you will get answers. Let us know when the time comes what your choice was. Have fun!
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Old 10-23-2018, 12:36 PM   #3
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Our 2005 Beaver Patriot Thunder is on a road master chassis & we love the ride. Great coach, be sure to test drive both rigs!
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Old 10-23-2018, 12:46 PM   #4
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I owned a 2003 Beaver from 2003 until 2013. They are great coaches, and their woodwork/cabinetry is the best in the industry. The Monaco coaches are good too, and starting in 2006 the two brands were built in the same factory and the chassis were nearly identical. Either one will serve you well. Choose the one that is in the best condition and the floorplan that suits you best.
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Old 10-23-2018, 12:48 PM   #5
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Both are quality rigs. Floor plan and condition are the biggies. And a Country Coach is great too.
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Old 10-23-2018, 01:46 PM   #6
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Go with Cummins

I have a 2004 Monaco. My good friend has a Beaver from the same year. I drive past him easily with my Cummins 330ISC vs his Cat 400. The Cummins is a better engine, IMO. If all else is equal to you.
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Old 10-23-2018, 01:47 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BltnRV View Post
I am a fifth wheeler who is looking to transition to motorhomes. I have found a 2006 Beaver Thunder and a 2006 Monaco Dynasty. Both have the approximate 37k miles and 4 slides and appear to be well maintained. Does anyone have a opinion about the quality comparison between the two coaches?
Fair to assume you mean a 2006 Beaver Patriot Thunder? Couple of things to consider - the Patriot Thunder came with a 525 HP Caterpillar C13, the Dynasty came with a 400 HP Cummins ISM in most models with the Allison 3000 transmission. According to the brochure two models (Yorktown IV and Stafford IV) came with a 500 HP engine and Allison 4000 transmission.

This difference is more significant if you drive in the mountains as we do out here in the West. My 2006 was actually built in April 2005, and it was built on the S-Series chassis, which is the same as the Dynasty.

By 2006 the Patriot Thunder was no longer really a Beaver. The much vaunted Beaver wood work was downgraded to the same cabinetry used in the Monaco coaches. This is not a terrible thing, but you will notice they are very similar in quality. There are some oddities in the 2006 Beavers as they were in transition from being a real Beaver to being just a badge on a Monaco - but nothing really significant.

They are comparable. The Caterpillar is still a well supported engine - any truck shop can work on them. Comes down to condition and taste.
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Old 10-23-2018, 02:20 PM   #8
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Like the others said, they are very much alike. Both coaches are very nice and should last you a very long time if maintained. I think both of these coaches are better built than 98% of the current 2019 class A motorhomes.

If you drive the 525HP Cat C13 powered Patriot, I think you will be impressed. The Caterpillar C13 is very powerful but will vibrate more at idle and may be fuel thirsty depending on how it's driven.
The Cummins 400HP ISL in the Dynasty is a great engine and does a good job if you don't overload it.
The entire Patriot drive train will be upgraded with an Allison MH 4000 vs an Allison MH3000 in the Dynasty.

Carefully study the floorplans and the condition of each coach. Ask if either coach as an optional Aqua Hot heating and hot water system. This is a diesel powered furnace that provides unlimited hot water and heat. It is a much better system compared to a propane furnace and hot water heater.
Look at the refrigerator in each coach. Most of these came with a Norcold 1200 which is problematic at best. Many of us have raplaced it with a Samsung residential fridge.
Make sure you check dates on tires (no more than 7 years) and batteries (3-5 years). New tires can cost over $5k and batteries another $1k.

Download the original brochures here:
https://www.monacocoach.com/luxury-rv-brochures?y=2006
http://library.rvusa.com/brochure/2006_patriot.pdf

Best of luck!
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Old 10-23-2018, 03:34 PM   #9
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I have owned a 2003 Beaver Patriot Thunder for 4 years. Yes cabinets are superb. The 505 HP CAT is rarely passed going up the mountains. I am on a road master magnum chassis so really no camparison. If you are buying 2006 or newer there isn’t much difference between a Beaver and a Monaco. Name badge only. Monaco is one of the best so you can’t go wrong with either.
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Old 10-23-2018, 03:53 PM   #10
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At that age Beaver, Monaco and Holiday Rambler were making almost exact duplicate coaches with some minor, depending on personal taste, differences.

With what you are choosing between, the Dynasty is one notch lower on the food chain than the Patriot Thunder. A more similar coach would be the Monaco Executive or the Holiday Rambler Navigator. These are the sister models to the Patriot Thunder.
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Old 10-23-2018, 04:53 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BltnRV View Post
I am a fifth wheeler who is looking to transition to motorhomes. I have found a 2006 Beaver Thunder and a 2006 Monaco Dynasty. Both have the approximate 37k miles and 4 slides and appear to be well maintained. Does anyone have a opinion about the quality comparison between the two coaches?


At 12 years of age, the care and maintenance of these two coaches will be the primary difference and may or may not be obvious. As built, the Beaver has a big block Cat engine and beautiful woodwork. The Dynasty has a Cummins ISL medium duty engine. Both are built on almost identical Roadmaster S Series Chassis. Any other differences between these coaches are minor.
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Old 10-23-2018, 05:39 PM   #12
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Just to add a few things to the excellent summary by vito.a:

You may want to start by comparing the specs. Review of the brochures of the two coaches will be helpful. Another part of comparison is knowing how the coach was optioned. You can get this detail info from the original factory Window Stickers. These should be available for each via Monaco if there's not already a copy with the coach. Monaco should still have this info in their archives.

There's no question that the CAT 525 engine in the Patriot Thunder is more powerful than the Cummins 400. You'll go faster but the 525 will cost more to feed. Which you want is up to you (and I won't get into a "which-is-better" discussion here). The Pat Thunder will have the Onan 10Kw genset; the Dynasty may have either the 8kW or the 10kW depending on model. Both coaches are built on the Roadmaster S-10 chassis but the GVWR of the Pat Thunder is higher due to its higher rated drive axle. Review of all the specs will tell you any and all differences between the two. With the brochure specs and window stickers you'll be able to make a comparison there.

Finally, the most important thing may be the condition the coaches are in, given that dozen years since they left the assembly line. See if you can get service records; they will show a lot about how coach was maintained and if things like oil changes, lubes, Aquahot service, genset service were done regularly. Regular oil analyses (or the absence thereof) also tell volumes about how coach was taken care of. A side effect of the service records is the mileage and dates will tell you whether or not the coach sat unused for long periods of time.

Then of course, test drive it. Test every component, genset, aquahot, appliances, lights, signals, etc. Make sure the first start is from a cold engine. If you have buddy who has some experience with these coaches come along that would help too.

Wishing you success and safe travels!
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Old 10-23-2018, 05:52 PM   #13
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Yep, im good with all so far. It should come down to the minor differences/preferences in layout and what powertrain they have. If the beaver happens to have a DD60 I would go with that hands down. The other thing is (which im surprised nobody has said, let me know which one you DONT get and where you are at all I might snatch it) .. both should be very nice. G/L - move dude.
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Old 10-24-2018, 07:43 AM   #14
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In 2004 when upgrading from a 98 Beaver Patriot I tried to find another Beaver with a Cat engine. The floor plans available and the smaller tires lead me to buy a 04 Dynasty with a ISL. In 04-5 Monaco was still putting on winter rallies but they had combined Beaver into the mix. In talking with Beaver owners it did not take long to realize I should be happy to not have a CAT engine, especially in the bigger C13. Terrible MPG and not that much power even after several re-flashing of the computer. Unlike Cummins, Cat had to actually meet the new emission standards. Cummins was able to use credits from the 5.9 ISB (had a different standard) to offset not meeting the standards on their bigger engines. Cat did not have a small enough engine to use to offset.

By 06 Safari, Beaver, Monaco were all coming down the same line so other than burl inserts in a Beaver's cabinet and the engines they are all almost identical. Did CAT get the engine problems straighten out by then, I do not know, but a check of the Aladdin system should give you total miles and total gallons of fuel. I doubt it will even be 5 mpg for a 06 Thunder.

Having recently, after 14 years of being happy with a overweight Dynasty and a ISL 400 my "new" ISX 525 lets you do some things I would not do before. Like pull out into the passing lane without that big of a gap and not hold up those in it. Being able to pass without barely seeing if a car is coming from the other direction on a two lane road...needed that much room to pass. Yes, the extra HP is nice but instead of 7 mpg I'm getting 6 at the same speed.

PS: I made a lot of money with CAT equipment but I'm glad my MHs do not have one. I also made sure a used FL70 MDT I bought had a Cummins.
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