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Old 09-07-2020, 08:20 PM   #57
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Rob,


When looking at "Older DP's" as the OP is doing, things like maintenance records can lead to a lot better coach/lower total cost in "ready to hit the road condition" than one that has had cosmetic upgrades but one with neglected preventive maintenance.


That is not to discount cosmetic upgrades, but they are NOT the expensive part of an older DP.


Absolutely agree
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Old 09-07-2020, 10:29 PM   #58
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I'm not sure why you consider this to be a poor choice. My 2000 Beaver Patriot Thunder has a 425 HP, 1550 ft-lb engine in a 34,000 lb coach and it is a dream to drive. Is it over-powered? Sure, but that doesn't make it a poor choice. I get ~8 mpg and can move out from a stop more like a car than a MH.
For comparison, my MH(see below(GVWR 31K) averages 7,5 mpg (350hp/1200tq). I think your mileage is good. From a stop, my Cummins engine is derated to protect the Allison 3060 tranny. It eases away from a stop light_.
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Old 09-08-2020, 02:23 AM   #59
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We narrowed our search to 2001-2006 Monaco Windsor. We wanted the side radiator with the 8 bag chassis. Found a 2005 38PDQ in fantastic condition with 62K miles on it, 1 year old tires, 1 year old roof A/C units and extremely clean. Bought it for a very fair $65K. Just got back from 3300 miles up to Wisconsin, Lexington, KY, Pensacola, and back to Melbourne and couldn't be happier. The only money we spent to upgrade is a new mattress and new house batteries. TV's had already been done but we are not TV watchers and have yet to even turn one on. Very happy with the purchase and look forward to many years of enjoyment. The mission is to travel to see kids and grandkids. The 400 ISL is a great engine for this motorhome and the QD8000 generator performed flawlessly as well.
You made a great purchase. Exactly the same type of coach we we looking for before we found our unit.
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Old 09-10-2020, 05:15 PM   #60
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Well built thru 2008 then beware of junk
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Old 09-10-2020, 07:31 PM   #61
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I believe you are on the right tract. In 2016 we purchased a one owner 2001 Fleetwood American Eagle 40QS with two slides, Cummings 370hp, with 70k miles for approximately $75k. Sticker price new was $330k so it has a lot of extras. It was in good shape except for some weathering of the exterior. The refrigerator had recently been upgraded to a large residential stainless French-Door model. We updated with the following even though some items had remaining use left:

1) Complete exterior repaint with original colors;
2) Upgraded both 13k btu A/Cs with 15k heat-pumps;
3) New set of Michelin tires;
4) Replaced all day/night shades and upgraded window treatments;
5) Updated inverter/converter with 3k watt pure sine wave;
6) Upgraded AGS to networked model connected to new inverter;
7) Added Sequence Management for electrical system control;
8) Added hard-wired EMS System;
9) New off-air antennae and LED TVs;
10) New house and chassis batteries;
11) New awning canopy;
12) Major maintenance/servicing end to end.

We’re very happy with our choices and since I did a lot of the work, excluding the painting, our total investment is a little more than one-third of its cost new. And all the main aged components are new.

Good luck in your search.
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Old 09-10-2020, 08:09 PM   #62
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Something to consider:

Buy the "budget" model from a high-end manufacturer. That might mean a 4-bag chassis vs a 8-bag, and maybe a lower power engine option (often upgradeable with just an ECM re-flash).

You'll get a coach made with the same materials and construction techniques as the highest end model, but what you won't get is a lot of add-on stuff that's going to break.

Look for example at the number of threads on IRV2 regarding Aqua-hot problems. Glad I didn't get that with my coach - huge complication. Now we don't spend a lot of time in the cold, but if we are hooked up, we find a little ceramic cube heater is more than enough to keep the bedroom toasty all night long, and then we run the noisy furnace in the morning to take the chill off the rest of the coach. Simple and cheap.

Same thing with smart wheels and complicated monitoring systems.

I bought an 11 yr old Beaver Monterey 10 years ago. I have spent an average of $1000/yr on maintenance and expendables, and I do most of my own work.
So is an 8 bag chassis better? Sorry a newb here
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Old 09-10-2020, 08:25 PM   #63
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You're obviously on the right track and have thought through your purchase decision very well. Also, you've received many outstanding, well thought out responses from members of the forum, so I'll take a different line of reasoning. Not sure how old you are but I assume you're in your 60s, so I would look for the newest unit that you could afford, that has been used, stored and maintained meticulously. Many older units, often sit for many months (or longer) and have lots of hidden problems. The best older RVs or ones that have been well-maintained and used on a regular basis, and stored inside in a climate controlled garage. There are some great buys out there because unfortunately, many people wait too long in life before making their dream purchase and then get sick and can't use their dream rig, and have to sell for a loss. I certainly don't suggest that you take it advantage of people in the situation!! Therefore, I would look for a unit that is 3 to 5 years old, used on a regular basis with say 15 to 30,000 miles, with copious maintenance records, and is the top 1-3 trim levels eg Allegro Bus, Mountain Aire, Discovery etc. of the highly regarded, mainstream manufactures like Newmar, Tiffin etc. Hope this thought pattern helps. Good luck, but don't overthink the decision, because RVing is great fun but not great economics, unless your recognize the cost/benefit of enjoyment
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Old 09-11-2020, 12:45 AM   #64
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Originally Posted by kbmiddle View Post
...
1) Complete exterior repaint with original colors;
...
If you don't mind, what was the cost of the complete repaint?
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Old 09-11-2020, 07:15 AM   #65
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This may have been stated already but too many responses to read all! I'm actively searching for a similar DP and would prefer Cummins on a Spartan chassis? Yes, some may take exception here, just my preference from my research; retired engineer. When I find the right one, I intend to take it to the local Cummins distribution dealer, Tampa area, and have them run diagnostics on a dynometer for its working dynamics. I'll also have a fluid analysis done. Cost will be approximately $750 and will let me know if the engine and transmission are in good condition and have been taken care of. I'm also a sailor and when you buy a used sailboat you have a survey done to learn of all of the problems it may have, money well spent when you learn the keel is dropping and that's an expensive repair. Same for the diesel engine and transmission for the DP. Yes, if a serious problem is uncovered and seller won't budge, go to the next one; thousands saved for a several hundred buckaroos!!!
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Old 09-11-2020, 11:46 AM   #66
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Keep looking just the way you are doing your research! We looked for a couple of years and found a 04 Allegro Bus TGP (38 feet, 3 slides and a Cummins 8.3L 350HP). We have put 35K miles on her to get her to 100K the Bus already had a residential refer and all lights converted to LED fixtures and upgraded TV's. Had good records and we service it completely annually. Did have to have the front repainted after removing the 3M mask - she had a bra on her and it ruined the front. Enjoy looking and Good Luck!
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Old 09-11-2020, 01:56 PM   #67
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Just as a measuring stick, I went from a 2002 HR Vacationer to a 2006 Monaco Diplomat. The improvement in ride, power, and quiet on the road was worth the price alone to me. But I also got a larger, nicer coach with many amenities.

Depreciation in the 3 years I’ve had the coach has been roughly 10% of my purchase price per year - roughly $8k/year. Maintenance is around $1,500 - 3,000 per year, depending on what needs to be done and who does it. I do the “minor” stuff myself, but leave “major” items (I.e., tires) to a trusted pro. I have had him do the oil change when I didn’t have time (I still work full time).

I’ve done a lot of the usual upgrades you see from others... residential fridge, AGM batteries (house and chassis), Watts link and crossbars, electronics upgrades (TV, dash stereo, house surround system, etc - more because I enjoy tinkering with that stuff than I really needed it. ). The final major upgrade will be new flooring - as soon as one of us can convince the other between engineered hardwood and ceramic tile...

We’ve averaged about 10,000 miles per year in the coach, and this year have spent a lot of time in it while I work “remotely”. While a Dip is not an “upper end” Monaco (it’s middle-lower in the Monaco DP food chain), we’ve been very happy with it.
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Old 09-11-2020, 03:24 PM   #68
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[QUOTE

So to get back in time before all this equipment got added seems to bring you to about 2006 or older. My first conclusion then is I am looking for a 2000-2006 high end model from a high end manufacturer. So to the first question, am I on track so far? Is this logical? Any contrary opinions or support for my conclusions thus far are welcomed.

Thank you.[/QUOTE]

Diesels with Diesel Particulate Filters (DPF) are pretty reliable. I'm not saying there are zero issues but it is rare. Anyone that thinks these are problems have little idea what they do. On mine they recommend cleaning at 250,000 miles.
Diesel Engine Fluid (DEF) is a whole other story. It's a complex system that has had maintenance issue for many owners, especially for those that don't put a lot of miles on their rigs. DEF is typically found in 2010 and newer models, but of course you have to check to be sure since manufacturers can use older chassis in newer units.
We sold our 2014 to buy an older 2008 without DEF. However, I fly out tomorrow to drive home a 2016 Newmar, so it looks like I'm jumping back in.
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Old 09-11-2020, 03:28 PM   #69
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[QUOTEDid have to have the front repainted after removing the 3M mask - she had a bra on her and it ruined the front. Enjoy looking and Good Luck![/QUOTE]

To be clear, did it have a 3M clear mask or a fabric bra on the front end? If 3M, you should have been able to remove it without damage to the paint.

I just watched a video from Ugly Shield on how to remove them.
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Old 09-11-2020, 03:50 PM   #70
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[QUOTE

So to get back in time before all this equipment got added seems to bring you to about 2006 or older. My first conclusion then is I am looking for a 2000-2006 high end model from a high end manufacturer. So to the first question, am I on track so far? Is this logical? Any contrary opinions or support for my conclusions thus far are welcomed.

Thank you.
Quote:
Diesels with Diesel Particulate Filters (DPF) are pretty reliable. I'm not saying there are zero issues but it is rare. Anyone that thinks these are problems have little idea what they do. On mine they recommend cleaning at 250,000 miles.
Diesel Engine Fluid (DEF) is a whole other story. It's a complex system that has had maintenance issue for many owners, especially for those that don't put a lot of miles on their rigs. DEF is typically found in 2010 and newer models, but of course you have to check to be sure since manufacturers can use older chassis in newer units.
We sold our 2014 to buy an older 2008 without DEF. However, I fly out tomorrow to drive home a 2016 Newmar, so it looks like I'm jumping back in.
Agree^^.

Though Diesel Particle Filter equipped engines are "pretty reliable," it makes it all the more important to have access to maintenance records for the vehicle, and to ask specifically about DPF events from the seller. Removal and cleaning of a DPF is not cheap, if needed, and a replacement is not cheap either. This should be a topic of interest and possible negotiation on an engine with a DPF. This is the device that requires "regeneration" which, usually, goes unnoticed, except by a dash light. On a long haul, heavy use vehicle, the light may not even come on.

Same caution with EGR only engines. Relatively reliable and innocuous system, until it isn't. Maintenance records can indicate repair/replacement/servicing of parts.

With both of these systems, soot from extensive idling or low combustion/exhaust temperatures compound issues. You will never know the idling or driving habits of the previous owner so records are your only clue. As mentioned earlier in this thread, generally engines built for the 2004 and later model year should have EGR, engines for 2007 and later add the DPF, and DEF added with 2010 and later. Always exceptions, but these are the model years about which to ask pertinent question.
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