If off-roading it with a 4x4 package, I wonder about the Rickson Wheels DRW to SRW conversion, which replaces two wheels with one 19.5" that can handle the same weight. It might be an idea.
I wish more people made those here in the US. There are at least three (four counting Sportsmobile) upfitters (Quigley, U Joint Offroad, and Quadvan), so I'm actually surprised that some RV company isn't making 4x4 "C"s at a decent price point here in the US.
This isn't rocket science. The price difference for the upfit to 4x4 is about the same as going to a Sprinter chassis, and from there it is almost identical the upfitting needed. I'm amazed that only Phoenix Cruiser offers 4x4 as an option, when this would come in handy for virtually any person with a class "C".
I am going to buy a 2015 Coachmen 21RS. Any comments on getting a Ford or Chev. The only difference that I can find on the Coachmen description is that the gross weight for the Chev is 14,200 lbs and for the Ford it is 12,500 lbs. The 21RS is 24ft 9 inches long so there is not a lot of room to add weight with equipment and supplies.
I prefer the Chevy.
BUT... on the Forest River forum, the rep is saying they can not get any Chevy chassis and Chevy can't tell them when they will be able to. They are built in a plant which makes the new Colorado & Canyon pickups, and all production is going towards the pickups. So unless you find a Chevy on a lot, you might only have the choice of Ford.
I was at a RV dealership looking at Sunseekers, and the dealer said the exact same thing. No more Chevies... just Fords and Sprinters.
From what I see, a prewire needs to have five things:
1: Some type of vapor barrier between the genset and the inside. Usually metal flashing.
2: Some way to mount it.
3: An ability to tap into the fuel tank at 1/4 level.
4: A way to route the exhaust safely, preferably using the Onan resonator.
5: The electrical output, including a remote start switch, and maybe even a generator controller.
From there, the install should be done by people who know what they are doing. If installed right, with acoustic insulation on all but the bottom (the bottom doesn't get insulation due to possibility of fuel spills getting absorbed by it), shock mounts, engineering to handle vibrations on the exhaust, fuel, and electrical lines, and finally proper clearances for air to come in and out, it will be pretty quiet. Without this done, the Onan can be quite loud and vibrate the coach like a Magic Finger bed.
The Chevy is a little bit longer because the doghouse is smaller.
I'm surprised you can find a rig with a Chevy chassis, mainly because most RV upfitters have moved to Ford E-350/E-450s.
Other than that, both platforms will serve you well. Ford has the edge on dealers and service, but other than that, it is six of one/half a dozen of the other.
Other than the Four Winds Majestic and the Phoenix Cruiser, I don't know of any that are below 24 feet. Even the Forest River LE model that has a side slide is about 24 feet or so.
What would be ideal is something with the exact floor plan of the 19 foot Majestic, but instead of the U-shaped dinette, a three-piece sofa that flips out like the Phoenix Cruiser's bed which is workable and decent to sleep on with or without a slide.
I use Thunderbird or Mail.app for hitting Yahoo. With "free" email services, you get what you pay for, although Yahoo makes for an OK spam bucket, where you give out your real E-mail address for stuff you care about, Yahoo for everything else.
If you are doing CAD, you will need at least 16 gigs of RAM and a SSD, which throws out 90% of what is out there out the window.
I don't think a Surface Pro 3 would have the CPU/GPU to handle SolidWorks. The minimum I'd go for would be a dual core i5, 16GB RAM, and a decent GPU. The ideal would be a quad core i7, 32 gigs of RAM, and the OS, CAD application, files, and swap/temp space all on SSD... making sure to have a hard drive for backups.
It is an interesting class "A", although I would dread getting windshield damage because that is something that likely would be almost impossible to find or replace if Thor changes/discontinues the model.
This was hashed out on the View/Navion forums. The winner? The diesel generator, by far. The people who have one say it doesn't smell, and some just use a Gen-Turi system so the exhaust is dispersed over the top of their rig, so it isn't an issue in any case.
You will hear dealers say that it is easier to use propane, propane smells better, and so on. Dismiss it. They just want to sell their rigs that have LP gas gensets. Propane can be a PITA to get, and it is a lot harder to take extra along than a few extra cans of diesel on a hitch mounted cargo rack.
If given the choice, go with a diesel generator. You will be happy you did.
I'm happy with my Valterra Dominator hose. It is way too big for the bumper, so lives in a plastic tub in a storage compartment.
Not sure about love, but in all my time RV-ing since 2011, a sewage hose from my bumper (which was never used) is the only thing I've had stolen from my rig.
I stopped by a FR dealer, and if you want one of their rigs, it will be a blue oval. I wondered why no GMs, so I'm guessing the above -- more Colorados and Suburbans, fewer 4500 chassis. To me, does it matter? I'm used to Ford, but nothing wrong with Chevy/GMC.
As for Sprinters, this discussion has been hashed out a bit. The two biggest disadvantages for that chassis is the price (usually $10-25k above a Ford or Chevy), and the lack of repair places in a lot of areas.
As for Dodge, the older Sprinters, I'd lump in with Mercedes. The newer ProMasters are a different beast entirely. Downside of the ProMasters is their anemic cargo capacity, so they wind up being used for only light, slideless rigs like the Winnebago Trend.
Of course, don't forget the curveball that will be smacking the "C" industry in the face in several years. Ford should have the heavier duty (T-450, T-550) Transit based cutaways out in a year or two. These will replace the Econolines... but as far as I know, -nobody- knows what engine choices these models will have. Perhaps a diesel, maybe an EcoBoost... who knows.
As of now, I have looked at almost everything out there. Nothing against Sprinters, but I don't see anything it provides that the E-450 doesn't... the cost difference can buy a lot of gas, and the Ford V-10, once it is out of warranty, has a whole slew of aftermarket stuff that can be done with it.
I will say I've seen E-350/E-450 rigs in extremely sad shape. However, they start up and run even though the radiator is likely shot, the gas has water in it, the oil is sludge, and who knows what is passing through the air filter.
I do like the recent updates to the latest model Fords as well. Especially with 7500 pounds available on the hitch, which comes in handy.
I'm considering them as an option... but the downside of buying from them is that for all purposes, the unit has no warranty, so be prepared to assume that part of the purchase price is a slush fund to pay for teething problems out of pocket once the unit is at home.
I'm not saying it isn't an option, as their prices are realistic, compared to trying to negotiate down from "MSRP" items and the tomfoolery that a lot of other dealers do.
408,000 miles. Should be adding a lot more soon. I took the rest of the summer of so I can have more fun time. At least 200,000 of those are towing miles too.
Got any maintenance suggestions to keep things humming that long?
While browsing RV Trader, I noticed a model from Forest River I've not seen before -- the Sunseeker 2430S, which is a B+ on a Ford E-450 chassis. It has a floorplan very similar to the Nexus RV model with a full wall slide allowing for the dinette and the queen bed to be usable. However, it isn't on FR's website, but putting "Sunseeker 2430S" in your search engine of choice brings up RV dealers selling it.
Is it normal for a RV maker to not list a model that is being sold?
Here is are my two cents:
I agree with the side windows in the cabover. Some rigs just have one, others two. These are nice, especially if there is one on each side, for a cross-breeze. I haven't seen any rigs made in the past few years that had a front window, so buying new, that problem should be taken care of. The exception are windows which are an integral part of the fiberglass like the one on the Trend.
One thing that is good to have is a fiberglass cabover cap. This not just protects the seams from water coming in while doing down the road, but does a good job at dealing with rock chips.
Going with a Ford E-450 chassis is better, because it has a wider stance, more fuel, and has a larger weight capacity than the E-350. It also has better brakes.
Factory installed rear camera is a must. Not wireless, but a properly installed wired setup. Side cameras are nice as well.
I want at least 5000 pounds, preferably 7500 for the hitch receiver. This gives me the ability to not just carry some items in a cargo rack, but maybe even have a small trailer.
Underbelly insulation and heating pads. I live in Texas, and even though the temperature is normally above freezing, there are a few days each year where it may be in the low 30s, and a cold snap every few years. Having insulation and heating pads means being able to take a shower and use water as opposed to grabbing the air compressor and having to winterize, then use a motel or bath-house.
If you are buying used, have multiple people check for water damage, be it bubbles in wallpaper, discolerations, smells, soft floor spots, areas around the cabover, and other signs. Find any? Run... it is easier to get a new engine and drivetrain put in than to rebuild a cabover.