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Old 05-07-2018, 04:06 PM   #1
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Exclamation New member/ tons of questions

Hello everyone....
As a new member and a future first time owner. We're hoping to get our RV life style started right here on IRV2.
I have a ton of questions, so what ever you feel like answering. It would be greatly appreciated.So lets dive right in...
First, the "big one"**
We plan to do FULL TIME RVing as soon as we purchase, that's right.
I know that's a huge step for someone who's never own one, but we've watched tons of videos and articles. "The dos and don'ts" /pros and cons and nothing has detered us. We even went out of our way to try and find as many negative aspects as possible. And so far, we seem to be pretty prepared to get started.
Why you ask...
We're pretty simple people, and aren't driven by alot of possesions. 2ndly, we're looking to cut cost on our current life style. And yes, we want to travel. And do alot of it.
So what do we want? Class A*. We considered the class C, but figured the A would meet our needs better. And since our top 3 most important things were, walk around mastor bed, bigger shower (Ba.Rm) and a couch in the living area. We needed something at least 30 ft long, and capped it off around 36 ft max. Two teens maybe with me and the wife for a couple years, but after that. There would be 2 of us.
I feel like I am descent at picking floor plans, but some how that seems like the easy part.
Due to budget, we're probably going buy "used" with low miles since we do want to travel A LOT. We don't know our budget to a tee, but feel like it would be under $70K.
Wife loves the Thor Ace, I am a little more partial to Fleetwood and Winnebagos- because of their long history.
Anyways, moving forward...
what advice do you have for me based on the info I have given.

Thanks 4 any help- even with negotiating price, fianancing, extended warrenties, or anything.

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Old 05-07-2018, 04:42 PM   #2
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Awesome!

My wife and I have been full-timing for a year now. We have a Class A 2000 Winnebago Itasca Horizon 37.5 ft. Diesel pusher. I love our rig! Plenty of power for those hills and mountains. Winnebago is defiantly a quality RV. We did a year of research on models brands ect before we bought one. Stay away from Thor and Jayco's. They look nice but are junk. I love the A class over a 5th wheel. Just easier to drive and are solid on the road. No sway and you don't need a costly truck to haul it. One insurance policy and a cart full of advantages. Always remember, no matter how good or new your rig is, there will always be something go wrong. Repairs, set backs, and extra costs. Couple final suggestions. If your going to Coloradoplan ahead, WAY ahead. Parks can be booked up to two or three years in advance. And #2.... What ever you do don't plan on camp hosting! We tried this in CO. It was a nightmare! If you want to be very leery of this you can find yourself without a spot to park with no warning. #3, always have a plan B and a plan C. RV full time life is seriously unpredictable. Be ready for all and every possibility. Most of all, plan ahead as much as possible. I wish you the best of luck on all your travels. And have fun!
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Old 05-07-2018, 05:13 PM   #3
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We are planning to go full-time in about a year when DH retires. We had a Class C about a decade ago and it gave us the bug to do it.

There is so much information available, sometimes it seems overwhelming. You can find lots of sources to help you with your decisions and to budget for your particular needs; everything from pricing, floor plans, and features, to technology solutions, tips on full-timing, campgrounds, etc.

When it comes to making the decision to buy, be as informed as you can be. I think the only negative I've found is that there are many people who will tell you that brand X is the "only" one to buy, or that a DP is a must or you shouldn't be RVing if you cannot afford to pay cash. The short of it is, only you know what is right for you. Take the information with a grain of salt. Go and see as many rigs as you can. Sit in them. Look at floor plans and determine which ones fit your needs the best. Then figure out what you can buy with your budget. Allow extra money for tires, fluids, minor repairs. There are several sites out there with budgets in the form of spreadsheets. When you narrow your choice to a few manufacturers, visit those owner forums here on IRV2 and ask questions of the members there--they know a great deal about those coaches.

Don't let the "flash" of a pretty rig cloud your judgment. Some of them look nice but either won't last or are just plain junk.

If you do your homework, you'll be much more likely to make a wise choice when you buy, and you'll be out enjoying the open road for years to come.

That is the way we're doing it...LOTS of research, kicking a lot of tires, reading what others have to say, and forming our own opinion for our wants, needs, and budget.

Good luck! There are many nice people on this forum who are experienced and can offer a wealth of information. There are a few other forums that are geared for full-timers, technology solutions for RVers, and aftermarket modifications... enough to keep you busy until you're ready to buy.

Happy travels!
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Old 05-07-2018, 05:22 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Art2018 View Post
We did a year of research on models brands ect before we bought one. Stay away from Thor and Jayco's. They look nice but are junk.
We've been out looking and had heard about Thor and Jaycos. We looked at a few new Jaycos last month and even brand new, they looked cheap to me. Of course, we were walking through Newmars at the same time, so naturally they didn't compare. A couple of years ago I got dazzled by a Georgetown Black Diamond...looked so pretty--but they don't hold up, either, from what I can tell.

Figure out your floor plan needs and figure out who makes them. The better gas manufacturers seem to be Newmar, Tiffin, maybe Winnebago.

One thing we've been considering is going with an older DP--like a Newmar, Beaver, Alpine, etc., that might need some updating in terms of cosmetics, but would give us more bang for our buck and less depreciation. DH is pleased that I'm more interested in the guts of the rig than how pretty the sofa is. That being said, I must have a residential refrigerator. If we buy a rig without it, it will be the first thing we change.
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Old 05-07-2018, 06:53 PM   #5
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I'm confused about the "two teens" issue. You're not saying that you'll have two teens living with you in a 36' motorhome for two years, are you? Or are you saying that you will not be starting to full-time for another two years until the two teens leave the nest?
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Old 05-07-2018, 08:00 PM   #6
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Couple things to consider. Gas units are typically less expensive to maintain than diesels. Not to many diesels built under 36ft and most diesels start around that length. Some will also mention that DPs donít handle well if under 36ft because of the short wheel base. There are some FREDs (front engine diesel) out there but watch out for those from around 2008-2012. A lot of EGR issues with the Navistar engines. We used to own a gas unit and would have no issues going back to one if looking at 34 ft unit. They do have a lot more engine noise but its all in what suits your needs. Make sure to consider fresh water tank size, generator, and frig style if you will be boondocking.

Also, the RV industry had a big shake up in 2008 when the economy dropped. Fleetwood, Monaco, Holiday Rambler, Country Coach to name a few, went under. They were revived by new investors but some will say the build quality on some models is not the same as before 2008.

Agree with previous post in watch out for the flashy items and electronics. Look at the construction. Things like stapled vs screwed down. Staples work loose fast.
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Old 05-07-2018, 08:21 PM   #7
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Not sure if you plan to tow a car but make sure to look at the towing capacity and GCWR and GVWR. Some models cut that really close, so between packing the coach and towing you could be pushing the limit. Remember the vehicle weight listed is dry. So if you only have 1700 lbs of capacity left before you hit your GVWR and you fill your 65 gallon water tank, you just used 540 lbs for water. Leaving only 1160 lbs for all your passengers and whatever else you want to carry.
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Old 05-07-2018, 08:34 PM   #8
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We are nowhere close to full-timing, but we just purchased our first RV. All of our research pointed us to diesel over gas. You can check our signature line for what we went with. I did a LOT of research, looking online and kicking tires. If you can get to a RV Show close to you, those are great to see a lot in one spot. I knew after initial research the importance of a quality built coach.

Another question you want to ask yourself is if you're going to do maintenance yourself or pay to have it done. If you're full-timing, it wouldn't be the easiest to have everything you need to do it yourself, but you could make it work. I just got through full service on the generator (oil, oil filter, fuel filter, flushing and refilling coolant), transmission service (draining fluid, replacing filters and refilling fluid), oil and oil filter change on the engine (28 quarts), and changing fuel filters. The coolant in the engine had a good lab report, so we will test until that needs to be done and I will definitely pay to have it done (15 gallons of coolant and flush waste that needs to be recycled. The transmission is good for 3 years, but oil, oil filters and fuel filters are changed annually. Just in what we did was $700+ in materials. While these jobs weren't too hard as a DIY, they are somewhat time consuming.

I just wanted to share that tidbit with you as food for thought. Speedco will change the oil, oil filters and fuel filters on motor and generator four a little over $400. Transmission fluid and filters were $325 on their own. For my RV, Speedco won't change the second fuel filter (2 hours of labor just to get to it).

With all of that said, we feel the benefits of a DP over a gasser are well worth the cost (power, ride, noise, comfort, etc.).

As for your budget for a coach, we got ours for under what you're looking to spend and under NADA.

That's just our 2 cents so far.
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Old 05-07-2018, 09:47 PM   #9
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Don't limit your selves, look at gas powered as well as diesel powered. I know a couple who full-timed in a gas MH with no slides, for about 7 years. They volunteered at federal lands, but that means staying in one place for months at a time.
Another full-timing couple live in a Newmar Essex, and move around a lot. They own a Thousand Trails nationwide membership, and a condo time-share for those times they want a break from living in a MH. These search results lead you to a multitude of full-timing blogs, if you want to research them: https://duckduckgo.com/?q=full-time+...&t=ffnt&ia=web
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Old 05-08-2018, 12:41 AM   #10
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We have a 2017 Thor and it has been great. We spent 10 minutes in a 350k coach the same day we bought ours and in that 10 minutes I saw way more problems with fit and finish alone that overwhelms anything in ours in our first year.
Yes, their are a lot of people who trash Thor, but the vast majority haven't owned one, and yes, Thor did have QC issues when their sales exploded. Thor has now slowed their production and ramped up their QC in all of the plants. Also, look at Thor's marketshare vs the number or complaints.
My last thought is also that people are much more ready to jump on any available forum and trash anybody / anything at the slightest perceived slight or problem, but are much slower (if at all) to praise when things are right. There are threads with many postings asking for people happy with their Thor product. Maybe you should look for the positive rather than jumping on the trashing bandwagon..
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Old 05-08-2018, 04:03 AM   #11
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All good points for you to consider. JThigh makes a great point on watch your weight especially if you plan on towing a vehicle. There is not much available wt in many of the class Cs.
Good luck on the search and enjoy the adventure.
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Old 05-08-2018, 05:18 AM   #12
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Hi ! Welcome to IRV2! We're sure glad you joined the gang!

Hope you find the perfect rig for your needs and that the fulltiming works out great for you!

Good luck, happy trails, and God bless!
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Old 05-08-2018, 05:59 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThePowells View Post
We have a 2017 Thor and it has been great. We spent 10 minutes in a 350k coach the same day we bought ours and in that 10 minutes I saw way more problems with fit and finish alone that overwhelms anything in ours in our first year.
Yes, their are a lot of people who trash Thor, but the vast majority haven't owned one, and yes, Thor did have QC issues when their sales exploded. Thor has now slowed their production and ramped up their QC in all of the plants. Also, look at Thor's marketshare vs the number or complaints.
My last thought is also that people are much more ready to jump on any available forum and trash anybody / anything at the slightest perceived slight or problem, but are much slower (if at all) to praise when things are right. There are threads with many postings asking for people happy with their Thor product. Maybe you should look for the positive rather than jumping on the trashing bandwagon..
Well said! All will have problems and need repairs. My Hurricane is a lower end gas Thor coach. We have put over 15,000 miles on it since June 2016 and very happy. If I was going to full time though I would want opposing slides in the living area. Best wishes to you!
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Old 05-08-2018, 06:47 AM   #14
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It's great you're educating yourself before you fall in love with an RV. Here's a Fantastic way to start. Go to rv.org and lay the bucks out for their product. It will be the best money you'll spend on your RV. Read the material through several times then use their rating guide to help you narrow down your selections. I have found that their ratings are spot on.
Good Luck and Happy Hunting.
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