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Old 05-08-2021, 08:36 PM   #1
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Barn Find...Need recommendations

My wife's friend is selling a motorhome. It belonged to the friend's daddy. He loved it and took good care of it. When he died in 2013 his wife couldn't stand to sell it but she couldn't drive so it stayed under a shelter. It was pulled out and cranked "every so often", but hasn't been cranked for quite a while now. All batteries are dead. The mother died recently and the kids want to sell. My wife and the seller have been friends since before the owner died so we trust the information we get. The RV is a 1999 Class A Tracker Trailstar 30-H with 44k miles. Chevy Engine. I understand this was built for Tracker by Flair-Fleetwood. It's in great shape inside and out. No sign of leaks or body damage. If the engine, generator, AC, and price check out I will buy. We have a 2001 Allegro 28W so I'm comfortable with the minor fixes in an older RV. It will need tires and batteries. Change oil, check fluids, service the generator, check appliances. What else do I need to check closely after being parked for eight years?
I found very little information on this model on the internet. Does anyone have experience or opinion on this model RV? Thanks,
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Old 05-08-2021, 08:53 PM   #2
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The first thing that comes to mind is rodent damage. They get in weird places, eat wires, nest in heat and air ducts, destroy the bottoms of cushions and mattresses, etc. So look deep for that kind of damage. It can be pretty nasty but not obvious during a walk through.
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Old 05-08-2021, 08:57 PM   #3
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From my own resurrection story....

Before it ever moved I had to replace the chassis battery, all the fuel lines from tank to engine, a fuel pump, a voltage regulator (alternator was good), brake hoses (chassis to wheel cylinders) , all new tires, brake system flush, and miscellaneous 12v electrical parts...

All I cared about at the time was what was needed to get it safely drive-able... I drove it from the purchase location to the place where I worked... My boss let me park it long term behind the shop and I was able to save a 100-mile-per-day commute and go home only on weekends (I was single at the time).

Plan on sticker shock on the tires... six new 19.5 inch tires installed on site totaled just over $1300.

You've already decided to buy it, but getting a professional inspection would be good money spent. It's very likely that he'll discover things you would never have thought of until you discovered that it wasn't working when you needed it... rodent damage is a primary thing.

That inspection will give you a checklist of what needs fixing, and he can help you put in an appropriate sequence....
First, what is needed for safe driving, then what is needed for extra bedroom use (i.e. you don't need a working toilet or shower), then what is needed for full use (fridge, water system, etc). Generator can be last... (mine still does not work and can wait as I'm plugged into 120v 20a service 24x7)

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Old 05-08-2021, 09:09 PM   #4
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Good advise above. I'd also check all joints and seals. If it was under cover, there may still be possible leaks that have not shown because of it being covered.

Have all fluids drained and replaced, differential, transmission, brakes, any hydraulic systems, etc.

Shock treat the water system with bleach.

Have fun with your new project.
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Old 05-08-2021, 09:18 PM   #5
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I would also recommend you have a certified mechanic go through the entire brake system; have the brakes completely stripped down and serviced. I would expect calipers, pistons, springs, cylinders etc to be either seized and/or rusted beyond operational life. Any flex lines most likely will need replacing.
If nothing else you will have peace of mind having complete confidence you will be able to stop the unit when you want to.
And it certainly wouldn't hurt to have the exhaust system checked out as well. It too is probably rusted through. You wouldn't want exhaust fumes escaping and possibly migrating up into the coach.
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Old 05-08-2021, 11:32 PM   #6
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My understanding is the same as yours. The Tracker Trailstar is a re-badged Fleetwood Flair. I believe the only difference in a 1999 Trailstar and a 1999 Flair will be minor cosmetic differences in the front cap (headlights and grill, etc.) with the rest of the exterior being essentially identical. The interior will also have minor differences cosmetically but the majority of parts and details will inside will be fairly close to that of the Flair.

You've received some very good suggestions so far. Good luck with it.
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Old 05-09-2021, 08:46 AM   #7
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The first thing I would do is to put a chassis battery in it and see if it starts. After that step on the brakes hard and see if any fluid squirts out. I wouldn't go changing a lot of stuff until you see what's bad, you can spend a lot of unnecessary money that way. That said I would certainly check most things that have been mentioned. This isn't for the faint of heart. The coach has been sitting for 7 years, any number of things may have gone wrong, but probably not everything that has been discussed. If it was sitting on concrete it probably won't have as many issues as if it was sitting on dirt or worse yet tall grass. I guess the next question is what are you going to do with two coaches. Best of luck and safe travels.
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Old 05-09-2021, 09:18 AM   #8
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I'm not sure the plan for 2nd MH is it an upgrade to what you have now. I don't know hierarchy of quality of every coach model ever made.
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Old 05-09-2021, 12:02 PM   #9
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The “chevy” motor means it is most likely a P32 chassis, and depending on the model year, it could have been built by either GM or Workhorse. IF it is a Workhorse, the vin number will begin with “5B4” and depending on GVWR, the motor will be most likely the 454cu in with a GM 4L80-E 4 speed Tranny. It MAY also have the infamous J71 AAPB system and if so, you will want to make sure it is working as designed.
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Old 05-09-2021, 04:18 PM   #10
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Thanks for the advice and information. Several things to check I hadn't thought about. The 2nd motorhome would not be a replacement for the Allegro. We have a fish camp near the Gulf coast of Florida with a 3 BR mobile home. When I wired for the mobile home I ran water and electricity for two RV sites. We fish for trout and red fish and snorkel for scallops. We have 3 kids and 6 grandkids. The mobile home got crowded so we added the Allegro. Then we found out we enjoyed traveling and camping so it stays on the road more than at the fish camp. Grand kids are getting bigger so we have been looking for another "cabin" to add. My wife mentioned this to her friend which started this discussion.
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Old 05-09-2021, 04:29 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Shallowtrout View Post
Thanks for the advice and information. Several things to check I hadn't thought about. The 2nd motorhome would not be a replacement for the Allegro. We have a fish camp near the Gulf coast of Florida with a 3 BR mobile home. When I wired for the mobile home I ran water and electricity for two RV sites. We fish for trout and red fish and snorkel for scallops. We have 3 kids and 6 grandkids. The mobile home got crowded so we added the Allegro. Then we found out we enjoyed traveling and camping so it stays on the road more than at the fish camp. Grand kids are getting bigger so we have been looking for another "cabin" to add. My wife mentioned this to her friend which started this discussion.

Keep that extra site open I may want to come down and have you teach me how to fish salt water. But seriously, if that is your plan I would pay most attention to the appliances and as long and the rig starts, runs and stops I wouldn't worry too much about the mechanical stuff and just get it down to the fish camp. Good luck and tight lines.
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Old 05-09-2021, 05:30 PM   #12
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IF tge plan is to leave it parked at the fish camp as extra bedrooms, you don’t need a MH. Much more useful space and no mechanicals to maintain if you buy a trailer and park it there.
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Old 05-10-2021, 08:26 AM   #13
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That was our original plan. Why pay for an engine and transmission we will seldom use. We are in no hurry so we have time to look for a good deal. The trailers we have looked at had low ceilings. We have a son who is 6'-5" so they wouldn't work. The 5th wheels we saw at the Tampa RV show had a lot more head room but we haven't seen any great deals on 5th wheels around here. The other plus with a MH, I didn't run sewer lines to the RV hookups. I have a dump station built into the septic tank in the back yard. I can crank it up and move to the dump station and not have to fool with a honey wagon.
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