The DW has put her foot down on lots of toys while we were raising our children, she miser-ed every penny and would often hide away money for that "one day" fund. With our baby married and setting off to start her own family, she handed me a savings book for Christmas as said "time to get serious".
We have no more solidified what we want than we can control the weather.
I drove logging and mining water trucks all through college. These were extreme hauls and tended to be in huge rigs in excess of 80,000+ pounds. This was back in the 80s when motors were smaller and less "smart" but the driver was sharp as a whistle.
Several years ago the DW started doing her research. Being ex military and driving convoys for front refuelers and wreckers, power and towability are keys to her. She wants a floor plan that is minimal and comfortable that will accommodate our fur kids (Weimaraners).
We like the quality of the Entegra Cornerstone, but loath the floor plans. While they surpass in many ways, where they are lacking is a huge lacking factor. Where they win every time is the DW likes the K3 Spartin and 600hp motor. She has done so much research on this coach that I often have to tell her to put it away.
Personally, I like the idea of an HDT toter combo. The problem with this is you can't take it international unless we both get international CDL... (she rolls her eyes as says "not gonna happen, its a toy, not a job"
Two of our really good friends had a newer rig and were MH jacked while going through Nicaragua on their way to Costa Rica in their rig, so DW says, "we need a beater that no one will care about". Then we sat in these old rigs, by the time you find a sound frame and chasis, you will be about $150-$300 depending on the modifications you make. Some that we rented for weekend trips were really little more than teeth rattlers. Noisy, wet, and you might as well have strapped yourself to a boulder because the comfort was about the same.
We looked into converting a skoolie (school bus), but I really don't want to dig into that. All the rewire to LED, getting the lay out just right, hiring someone to lift the roof (I am over 6'4"), install the basement and everything else. The wife says that way on the inside it would be comfortable because we could pick the furniture, but we could "hippy" the outside and leave it looking like nothing special. We managed to find one to rent for a road trip, but I just don't like the noise up front like that.
Long story short, the things that are musts for us are:
- Quality, Quality, Quality
- Customer service past the purchase contract
- Tag Axel, Diesel Pusher
- Motor large enough to haul coach and toad up and over our mountains we live in without feeling the need to get out and push
- Good climate control
- NO REAR lavatory
- NO HALF bath
- Floor plan that works for us and our fur kids (which are weimaraners, if you have never owned one, you may not understand the unique challenge our fur kids pose)
These are our solids and why we are so glad we have found this forum. Sometimes I think my DW lives here in her off hours. She refused to get an account because she said "You can't get one yet, we are redneck hillbillies that don't know squat with our pop up". I figure you all had to start somewhere. Our RV experience is mostly in our houseboats and ski boats, but we have had our well used pop up since 1986 and its still in great shape.
So much more to decide upon and we want to make our decision no later than early next year. We agreed that we would retire after our baby got married, we aren't old enough (government standards) but both feel we spent our "young" years focused on raising the children, now it is time to get to know each other and have our "play and live" time together.