Four years ago we traded our 3255 Montana with 2 slides for a 245 Cougar with dinette slide. The reason was that we were planning to go to Alaska and didn't need to drag a big 5er. Yes we lost the recliners and a lot of space, but we found we could survive without all of that space. We didn't lose that much basement space and we store clean clothes under the bed instead of in a dresser. We have been to Alaska (10 weeks on the road), out west (6 weeks) and to PEI and Nova Scotia (5 weeks). We have survived and haven't had any major fights. The thing we learned is that we can get into a lot of National, State, and Provential parks that we wouldn't have been able to get in with the bigger 5er. Yes, there are times that the recliner would be nice, but we are traveling not sitting in one spot in Florida for 3 months. The Cougar is a lot lighter to pull and manuver. A lot of it depends on how you are going to use the 5er - traveling and sightseeing or sitting in one spot for several months.
I use one on my 5th wheel and carry 2 bicycles on it. Have taken it to Alaska and back and just this summer to Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia and back with no problems. I do use some more tie straps than come with the carrier and then tie a rope around the ladder and both bikes. I check them everytime we stop and they ride fine. If the ladder will hold a person then it can hold 2 bikes.
Went to Alaska in 2009 and told my insurance agent to order a new windshield for when I got back. Got on the Alaskan Highway at Dawson Creek and met a dump truck about 5 miles out of town and sure enough I got a rock in the windshield. It didn't crack - just starred. Waited until I got back home and never had another rock the rest of the trip. It couldn't be patched so they put in a new windshield. That was the only problems on the trip.