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Old 03-23-2019, 11:34 AM   #15
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New guy buying first Rv - decisions decisions

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Originally Posted by cedwards View Post
Hi all,

Just posting to intro myself. I'm new to RV'ing, but being an older guy (just retired) I don't want to make every mistake in the book when it comes to buying our first rig... So i'm here to learn as much as I fast as I can!

We are looking for a smaller rig under 30ft... and when I say "rig" I mean the exterior length of either a TT, 5er, or MH. Actually considering all three despite the big differences... when you add a 3/4 ton truck for TV, not too much difference in total cost.

Since I have so little towing / driving experiences with RVs, I'm wondering which forum would be best to post a few questions on how these rigs drive? For example, how does a 16,000 GVW class C compare with a similar weight class A?

Looking forward to a whole other phase in life... after working the 8 to 6 for 40 years! Thanks again for all this valuable info on this wonderful site!
Hi there,

It took us years to finally pull the trigger first getting the TV etc. one huge concern for us along with the cash of course was where we wanted to camp. So many folks will tell you go big or go home, but really my advice is to think about where you want to camp and what kind of camping you want to do? Will you go to state or national parks, or will most of your camping be private RV parks with full hookups?

For us sadly we’re still stuck to the 9-5 grind so our camping trips are long weekends, holidays and vacations. We live in CA so wanted to extend our camping season to be year round. State parks in CA often have size restrictions and so that was a key component for us. I looked up all the places that we love to visit and checked the size restrictions. Also being brand new to towing we decided that 23ft would be the most we would go in length to keep the length at 27 feet.

My neighbor has a 35 foot 5th wheel and he told us that he couldn’t fit in most CA parks so he simply goes to RV parks. He never goes anywhere without hookups either so this works for him. We finally settled on our Lance TT cause of the layout size, and weight. It has solar so it’s perfect for us we don’t need hookups but sometimes still nice to have them of course.

I also went through the laundry list of driveable or towable and originally I thought we’ll get the towable but someday I’m going to want driveable. After towing for a few months now I no longer feel the need to upgrade to a driveable towing isn’t really as difficult as I imagined and I like the freedom of having tow separate vehicles.
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Old 03-23-2019, 02:02 PM   #16
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Thanks Vmcintee, I hear ya on fitting into CA state parks. I'd like to stay under 27' also, but everytime I discuss floorplans with my wife we always seem to end up back at the next size up... Glad that you found adjusting to towing wasn't too painful.... I've pulled a few equipment rigs with tractors and such, but to be honest never was comfortable doing it. I'm lucky to have my brother-law who has a dually 5'er setup that I can borrow, if my 1500 Silverado won't cut it for the short term.

This summer we're going to stay local for sure (Big Bear lake), and we are "pre-approved" for upto 29', so that's why the arbitrary length limit for our first rig. Right now I'm thinking a "short" 5er, but as you probably know they are pretty rare, so not finding any good used deals locally. Might go new if we have to... again my wife doesn't want older rig.

Fun looking and learning anyway.
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Old 03-23-2019, 02:29 PM   #17
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You might be looking for some recurring points here. I'll echo that floorplan may be the biggest consideration of all- regardless of which type of rv you're considering. If you can't stand moving around in it, no amount of quality, attractive color, upholstery or anything else will matter. (Well, quality is important and I have my opinions there too). Have a great time looking around- you'll learn a lot in the process. My daughters have both had travel trailers- both were rear kitchen models. I've owned 2 class c's and now own a class a (11 years). We've had fun in all these units and frankly can't point out a distinct advantage in any of them.
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Old 03-23-2019, 03:09 PM   #18
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As noted in my signature we started with a 32 ft 5th, 50 ft overall with a RAM 3500, CC, LB. After a long summer trip to Alaska we decided there are some trips we'd like to have a much shorter rig. So we got a 25 ft Class C for trips where length is an issue. The 5th is for other trips and some of the boon docking. The 5th has larger tanks, twice the battery and lots of solar so off grid camping is easy. Also with the truck and 5th we can use our water bladder and portable waste tank to extend stays as long as desired. Just means taking the truck to a dump station once in a while and return with fresh water and probably food.
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Old 03-23-2019, 10:35 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cedwards View Post
Thanks Vmcintee, I hear ya on fitting into CA state parks. I'd like to stay under 27' also, but everytime I discuss floorplans with my wife we always seem to end up back at the next size up... Glad that you found adjusting to towing wasn't too painful.... I've pulled a few equipment rigs with tractors and such, but to be honest never was comfortable doing it. I'm lucky to have my brother-law who has a dually 5'er setup that I can borrow, if my 1500 Silverado won't cut it for the short term.

This summer we're going to stay local for sure (Big Bear lake), and we are "pre-approved" for upto 29', so that's why the arbitrary length limit for our first rig. Right now I'm thinking a "short" 5er, but as you probably know they are pretty rare, so not finding any good used deals locally. Might go new if we have to... again my wife doesn't want older rig.

Fun looking and learning anyway.
You may want to check out Lance TT’s since your in CA. Lightweight good quality and great floor plans. When we bought our TT we had a Tacoma with 6400 lb tow capacity. Lance met all our needs and our weight limits. We just upgraded the truck to a F-150 for more towing power and better payload. Thinking in the next few years we might like a little bit bigger model. We’ll likely stay with Lance but would also consider Outdoors models since we’ve got a bit more towing ability now. Gotta say we love our Lance tho!
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Old 03-24-2019, 09:49 PM   #20
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A big thank you for all the great suggestions! Lance is definitely on my list, as are shorter 5th wheels. Wonderful suggestion to follow some of the other folks who spent an enormous amount of energy constructing and then following up on great questions. Actually this forum makes it tough to come up with some original postings!... But hopefully I will get there!

And I gotta love the idea of 2 rigs.... I've had a older pickup and a economy car most of life... so the idea of a large "campground" rig and a 25 footer for state parks makes perfect sense. Think I'm getting a little ahead of myself..

Better get back to reading...
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Old 03-25-2019, 11:45 AM   #21
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WELCOME!!

You've, already, received such great responses! I started with a small TT as my current vehicle could pull it. For me it was the perfect RV to cut my teeth on.

I had it for years and, from it, I learned what I liked and did not like. What I wanted and really didn't care about.

When I had to, due to my disability, move to a motorized RV I was ready for that change and got the perfect one for me.

RV shows are GREAT for looking at different types of RV's. I love going to them.

You can also, find the one that most closely matches what you want in structure. The incidentals you can add yourself. That's what I did with mine.

Good luck and don't stress over your choice, this is supposed to be fun. My MH is my 'happy place. As soon as I get behind the wheel I feel all my cares just fall away.
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Old 03-25-2019, 12:20 PM   #22
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X2 on renting some different RVs while you're researching options and lifestyle plans and on buying used if you can so you don't deal with the new RV quality, and nuisance repair issues.
We started with a too big (37' hitch to spare) TT because I already had a diesel truck but hated how much time it took to get ready to go, set up once there and being too long for the sites we wanted to use. Then went to a 29' gas class A which was better but rode rough, loud and was just a little to small on long trips.
Lastly (?) we're in a just under 35' DP and feel just right! We can fit everywhere we love to go, love the ride, quiet and comfort and look forward to every trip!
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Old 03-26-2019, 12:25 AM   #23
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Welcome aboard!

I lurked and browsed for years while renting and shopping to buy. Excellent resources and people available on this site.

You will find enthusiasts for every variant of the RV lifestyle and every price point.

Interestingly, our current 54,000-pound 45-foot Class A diesel pusher is easier to drive, more stable, more maneuverable, more responsive, more nimble and much quieter than every 33-foot Class C gas-powered motorhome that we had rented over the years.
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Old 03-26-2019, 10:37 PM   #24
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Hi Pilot2driver,

Interesting comments on your DP! I drove a 2006 Winnie View cross country for my wife's sister last year. It was really my first RV experience and wasn't too bad once we got some basics down.

I would assume the only downside to your rig would be campsite accessibility at state and nat parks? Surprised that you consider your current rig more "nimble" than a 35' class C, but after having been on a lot of bus trips through NYC I can sorta appreciate what you are saying....

I'm mostly focusing on short options to get started... in a year or so I'm sure I'll be considering other options.
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