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Old 07-27-2021, 06:02 PM   #1
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Question on how Class A handle on the road

Not sure how to present this question. We have owned two class A motor homes now. Pretty pleased with our 38 ft Georgetown but would still like a better ride. My question is do all class A motor homes ride the same? I feel like we are driving a waterbed on wheels. We are kinda all over the road. Big rigs pass and push us. Kinda scary at times. We are 38 foot with a single tandem axel.
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Old 07-27-2021, 06:13 PM   #2
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Properly inflated tires are a must for proper handling. My Discovery reasonably well on the roads with cross winds and or trucks.
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Old 07-27-2021, 06:18 PM   #3
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A lot depends on weight and suspension as well as properly inflated tires.

I generally don't notice passing big rigs.
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Old 07-27-2021, 06:26 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by christenha View Post
Not sure how to present this question. We have owned two class A motor homes now. Pretty pleased with our 38 ft Georgetown but would still like a better ride. My question is do all class A motor homes ride the same? I feel like we are driving a waterbed on wheels. We are kinda all over the road. Big rigs pass and push us. Kinda scary at times. We are 38 foot with a single tandem axel.
Your question is kinda like asking "do all cars drive the same"

It depends on what chassis it is on, tires, shocks, springs, age, when the last alignment was done.

I had a 36' on a Ford F53 for years. The entirety of its travel was from Minnesota to Mazatlan Mx every year. Each trip was the longest most stressful 7 days each way every year.

I upgraded to a 40 DP on a Freightliner Chassis and life became much easier. Still feel a little wind and if it is from the right direction I can feel some of the semis. But I stopped for fuel in Vaughn NM on my way back, driving across the wide open for hours and damn near got pulled out when I opened the door the wind was blowing so hard. Had not even been feeling it on the road.

So no. They don't all drive the same. You need to decide if you want to make changes to what you have to make it handle better, and there will be a limit to what you can do, or upgrade and then how far do you want to upgrade because there are lots of levels of suspension and chassis. Go all the way with independent front suspension and a tag axel. But just remember, no mater what you do, your still driving a bus. Either a school bus or a greyhound. The choice is yours.
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Old 07-27-2021, 06:30 PM   #5
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No. Not all handle the same. Our 2014 Fleetwood Excursion was a real white knuckle experience to drive. I believe it was a 33 or 35 foot diesel. It was all over the road and really took a beating when trucks passed me. We had alignments, tires and other adjustments made by a good shop and could never get it to where I felt comfortable driving it. Then we got a Discovery 40G and it was a dream to drive. I'd read posts about people and their "comfort drives" and say who needs that? I guess part of the issue with the Excursion was the shorter wheel base, I don't know. There used to be another guy on the forum at the same time who had one and he spent a lot more time and money trying to dial it in than I did. He eventually bought an Alpine and had the interior redone. My advice would be if you go to replace your coach, take the new one for a good, long highway cruise and make sure you like it as much as your current one. We actually like the Excursion over the Discovery in several ways as far as the interior and it being more compact. But the driving experience mad the difference. I'd buy another Discovery if we ever went back to DPs in that price point.
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Old 07-27-2021, 06:34 PM   #6
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We had a 32' gas coach that was all over the road whenever I got passed by a truck or bus. Or if it was windy. It weighed 16,000 pounds. We traded it for a 40' diesel with a tag axle that weighs more than twice that. GVRW is 44,000 lbs. Solid as a rock! That was our experience with handling. There are things you can do to improve handling but I never got around to it.
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Old 07-27-2021, 06:43 PM   #7
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Not at all. They all are diffrent. We really dont notice big trucks pushing us around. Trucks also get pushed around by other trucks. The key I have found is get as much space between you and the truck. If being passed on the left have your right tires right next to the white line.

If you watch the trucks. Most of the time the truck on the right is on right white line. The truck on the left is on the left white line. Leaving a good 4-5 feet between them. Air moves better with more space.

I also agree air up the tires.
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Old 07-27-2021, 06:58 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by christenha View Post
Not sure how to present this question. We have owned two class A motor homes now. Pretty pleased with our 38 ft Georgetown but would still like a better ride. My question is do all class A motor homes ride the same? I feel like we are driving a waterbed on wheels. We are kinda all over the road. Big rigs pass and push us. Kinda scary at times. We are 38 foot with a single tandem axel.
All rigs handle differently. I have owned 5 from a Class-C through 3 class A's to our current DP. The ride on the DP is superior to the others but it's also a lot heavier rig.

When I had my gas jobs I put adjustable rear air bags on all of them (A must in my opinion, I had an onboard air compressor and controls right at my finger tips that I could adjust on the fly), I added sway bars and steering stabilizers to them as well. Also I find having a toad helps. When properly set up they act like a tail on a kite in stabilizing against big rig pull/push. Not properly set up they have the opposite effect and will make you sway. And as others have stated the tire pressure makes a big difference (Too low and it will be all over the road, too high and it will ride hard). The additions made a big difference.

To note, nothing you do or anyone else for that matter will completely stop the push/pull when a big rig goes by or a stiff sideways wind. It's simple physics no matter what is said. There are mitigating factors such as the rigs getting longer and heavier help but to not feel it at all is simply not possible.

Good Luck!

Also, make sure you are not over loaded. People have a tendency to overload these rigs which will make it very hard to handle as well. the weight rating especially on gas rigs is lower than most think it is. And keep an eye on weight distribution.
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Old 07-27-2021, 07:00 PM   #9
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I guess I’m very fortunate. I would rather drive our coach than my car. It rides nice, is very stable, and quiet.

It’s a 2006 Mandalay 40E on the Freightliner XCR chassis, with IFS.
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Old 07-27-2021, 07:09 PM   #10
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Just got back from a ~4700 mile trip in all types of terrain and driving conditions. Only in the really bad side wind occurrences was it a challenge to drive the coach but not as bad as some of the others I passed.

Mine is a ~40' coach but is build heavy, full steel cage on 8 airbags. I essentially floats and drives pretty darn straight and true.



In comparison I was riding with one of my wife's friends and I was amazed at how bad the class A gasser handled, it was a struggle for the driver to keep it on the road with no wind. The next day my wife road with her friend and I followed. I asked my wife how the ride was and she said she was scared the whole time.
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Old 07-27-2021, 07:20 PM   #11
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I have a 34' Newmar gas class A. Alignment, proper tire pressures, and Koni shocks, it is a two finger ride going down the road at 65-70 mph. I paid $75k for it brand new, and have about a grand or so into upgrades. Does it ride as good as a diesel costing hundreds of thousand of dollars more? Arguably no. Do diesels ride several hundred thousand dollars better than my RV? Absolutely not. Thats a lot of gas in the tank for trips.
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Old 07-27-2021, 07:27 PM   #12
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After driving a few I can say the shorter chassis in my mind was an issue. Had 34’ journey diesel that was a wandering wonder. A little less than the short wheelbase gasser but still … . Moved to a 41’ tag axle heavy 03 Beaver motor home and it was like night and day, handles with one light hand on the wheel.( not that I drive like that) Trucks passing do little to nothing, and wind is not noticed. It just floats down the road. My first thought is long wheelbase and especially tag / weight make a big difference.
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Old 07-27-2021, 08:28 PM   #13
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FYI, your profile still shows a 33' Holiday Rambler.

What year and model Georgetown do you have? The Georgetown series started at least as early as 1998 so there have been a few changes since then.

It probably doesn't matter much however you may get more relevant answers here: https://www.forestriverforums.com/forums/f16/

If you are unaware of that site, it's owned by the same company as this one. Create an account using the exact same email address as you use here and password as you use here and their system will find your account. Fill in the profile and you can post.

My Georgetown is spec'd as 37' 11.02" so it's not quite 38'.

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Old 07-27-2021, 09:45 PM   #14
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Do they all ride the same????……Nope. Our first was an ‘87 GB Cruise Aire on a P-32 chassis. Oh it was sooooooo bad. Front wheels were inline with the inner rear dually which created a really horrific driving experience.
Current coach is an ‘03 Winnebago Adventurer
33V on a W-20 chassis. No suspension upgrades and handles like a dream. Quiet, responsive and extremely comfortable. One handed drive unless a 40 mph side wind. We couldn’t ask for more. Will a DP do better? I’d imagine it would but don’t want that. Go for what YOU like.
There’s a 45’ Prevost next to us right now. What a beast….whew.
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