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Yes-Take the RV and the unknown problems. 12 26.67%
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Old 10-27-2021, 08:23 PM   #1
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Should I take a 1994 Coachmen Destiny as a gift?

My wife and I have a 31' Fleetwood Jamboree C-Class motor home. It runs great and we enjoy traveling with it. I have been offered a 1994 Coachman Destiny at no cost but the unit is 1500 miles away. I believe that the RV/Cummins diesel only has about 60K on it and that it ran well when it was put into storage after a trip from Maryland to Texas. It has been in outdoor storage for the last 9 years and not been started up in the last 6 or 7 years.. Recently, the current owner installed a new battery and tried to fire it up. He reported that it was difficult to start and would not continue to run after the engine was started. At first thought, it sounds like a pretty good deal, but I am not a mechanic. I've been looking at everything that I can read about in a similar situation on a non-running diesel. The fuel is obviously old and might have been put in 7 to 10 years ago when he 1st moved to Texas. I know that old gas can turn into varnish but don't know about trying to run old diesel fuel. The owner first put this RV in storage 9 years ago but said that he used to take it out every month or two and drive it 5 miles to exercise it. I realize that it could be a fuel filter problem and have even speculated that mice/rats have nested in the RV and chewed up the wiring, but have no inspection information or indications to verify that. Here's the big question: do I take the gift of the RV or not? It is 1500 miles from home. Off the top, I will need to replace all six of the old tires. I could probably afford to spend a max of $8K or $9K replacing the tires and getting it road worthy but no more, since it will likely cost another $1,500 to drive it home. This decision calls for more knowledge than I have so I am asking this community to make their best guesses/predictions about a happy or miserable end to the story.
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Old 10-27-2021, 08:31 PM   #2
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Stick with what you got Special. Ed. There is going to be so many hidden cost, they will drive you nuts regretting taking it, just because it's free.
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Old 10-27-2021, 08:33 PM   #3
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call a local (where the motor home is located) diesel mechanic and have him go out and look at the unit and give you a estimate on what he would charge to get it ready to roll down the road .Have him list all the things it will need done ! He will most likely will charge you 3 to 4 hundred to do that if you decide not to have it fixed!
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Old 10-27-2021, 08:49 PM   #4
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After sitting 6-7 years before putting in a new battery and cranking on it the oil and fuel should have been changed, now any water that has settled in the oil and fuel has been pulled through the engine and fuel system. I'll never understand why people will crank an engine that hasn't been started in years with the same old fuel and oil in there from the day it was parked, but they do it all the time.
Brian, 2011 Winnebago Via Class A on Sprinter Chassis
Tucson, AZ
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Old 10-27-2021, 09:28 PM   #5
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I would not take it.

1994, sitting in the Texas sun in storage for 9 years, paint, curtains and fabrics fading dry rotting, maybe roof leaks. Need new tires and will not start which is the tip of the iceberg. 1,500 miles away you have to hire out all the work and how do you coordinate the work. You would need to get it ready for a 1,500 mile trip.
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Old 10-27-2021, 09:54 PM   #6
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There's an old saying "never look a gift horse in the mouth"
WHY...cause you will instantly know it is a bad deal

Is it time for YOUR Medication or Mine?
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Old 10-27-2021, 10:16 PM   #7
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Between tires and expenses getting it running right and road worthy, youíll spend about what NADA says its worth on good shape. And then there's everything else thatís deteriorated while sitting as others have said. It could be a good adventure and might turn out ok, but it will be anything but free and you might end up paying to get rid of it.
Rich and Terry - Ď16 Ventana 3427 with HWH Active Air, 1575w solar; 2001 Jeep toad.
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Old 10-28-2021, 12:04 AM   #8
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I agree that it's probably going to need a bit of work and money to get it going. On the other hand, my curiosity would get the best of me and I'd still want to check it out. I have the time and a little car that's cheap on gas so I'd load up, plan a few vacation type stops along the way, and make the 1500 mile trip to take a look.

Ya just never know!
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Old 10-28-2021, 06:03 AM   #9
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Depending where it is in TX needs to be considered as well. That's a big state. Amarillo or Houston not so bad. El Paso is another story.
I would have to go look, but it would be cheaper to have someone send you a video or facetime with you about it's cosmetic condition. If it was me I'd pick up a friend and head out. Seeing is believing.
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Old 10-28-2021, 06:19 AM   #10
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Brings to mind that old sailing chestnut: The most expensive boat is the one you get for free.

Iíd pass.
Tom & Jeri
2018 Coachmen Galleria 24T Li3
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Old 10-28-2021, 06:32 AM   #11
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Unless you were competent in the entire chassis components line up from front to rear bumper, that would be a pass. ad it been stored inside, it at least would have had some physical protection.

Low retail on this coach is only about $11K, Just to replace tire and probably brakes would be in the #3500 to $4000 range. Then a $500 t0 $1000 general maintenance (oil/filters, lube, etc). Add in new batteries will eat up another thousand bucks - and when all done with that, you can start on paint, interior and you will end up with a Mh that might be worth $14,000. Truck garages are at about $125 - $150 (and up) per hour. These values are based on NADA which are usually high along with my vehicle history.

Dave W along with my DW, Susan and our poodlepups, Callie & Molly,2011 Ford F250 6.7 CCLB, 5er Hitch Option w/B&W Hitch,,Ride Rite air bags, 2014 Montana High Country 343RL (38')w/disc brakes
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Old 10-28-2021, 06:52 AM   #12
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Free is not always a good thing!

Sounds like a money pit.
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Old 10-28-2021, 06:57 AM   #13
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As others have said, a lot depends on where the RV is now, and where you are.
If you are anywhere near Midland/Odessa, you could easily ‘flip’ this RV.
The challenge is going to be, getting this RV to you.
New fuel, lube/oil/filter, tires, batteries, then driving it to your place.
If I were you(I know I am not), I would go for it.
1995 Bounder 35 UWB, F53
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Old 10-28-2021, 08:16 AM   #14
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If you are looking for a real "money-pit" and project, go for it. personally, I'd pass and tell the current owner to try to sell it locally for whatever he can get.

Amateur Radio Operator (KE5DFR)|Full-Time! - 2012 6.7L Ford Crew Cab Dually -2013 HitchHiker Champagne 38RLRSB - Travel with one Standard Schnauzer and one small Timneh African Gray Parrot
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