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Open Roads Forum  >  Class C Motorhomes

 > FR Solera class C, opinions?

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mlts22

Austin, Texas

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Posted: 06/19/12 03:42pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Just wondering what people's opinions are on the FR Solera class C. Luckily, two RV dealers in my area both sell and service these. I also found a very polite Mercedes Sprinter dealer in the same area who can also do detailed chassis/engine work should the need arise.

Here is what I've seen from first glance:

They come standard with the "arctic package", which means heat pads and ducts on the tanks. Even in Texas, this is a must because of the unpredictable weather.

The Murphy bed in the 24MS is a cool idea and allows for a bigger bathroom. However, I wonder how reliable the motor on the bed will be. If it dies when the bed is up, that means less sleeping space, no big deal. If it dies while down, it means the slide can't be retracted, so one is stuck unless there is some manual override.

I wonder if the 1230 or so pounds of CCC is enough. Assuming dry weight, that means just with all tanks full, the vehicle is nearly overloaded if not completely, and that is even before I sit in there or toss bedding and clothes in the coach.

Another side question: The Solera offers a diesel generator as an option. Does that have a better run time than the standard propane 3.2 genset? I live in Texas, and having a long generator run time for the A/C can make or break a boondocking expedition, so would a diesel make a difference? This is compounded by the fact that I can't find propane fillers to save my life out this way, while any gas station in these parts has diesel.

Just wondering if anyone ones one of these and has good/bad impressions.

mm047

Green Valley, AZ

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Posted: 06/19/12 05:13pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I'd say go for it. And get the diesel generator. Diesel fuel is far less of a pain to deal with than finding propane.

Your CCC should be fine. Sure, you'll fill up the water, but you'll never roll with full black and grey tanks. So that gives you about 1000# for you, other people, and supplies.


Mile M.

2008 Winnebago View 24J
2010 Mercury Mariner
Ready Brute Elite and Blue Ox

Dakzuki

Carnation, Wa, USA

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Posted: 06/19/12 08:28pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you have problems getting LP, go for the diesel. Be aware the diesel likely will be louder and stinks when it is still cold. Even when warmed up it smells some. I have a diesel in mine.

I didn't find FR quality as good as Winnebago....but they are cheaper.


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2000 Chev Tracker Toad


burlmart

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Posted: 06/20/12 09:15am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

mlts22 wrote:


Another side question: The Solera offers a diesel generator as an option. Does that have a better run time than the standard propane 3.2 genset? I live in Texas, and having a long generator run time for the A/C can make or break a boondocking expedition, so would a diesel make a difference? This is compounded by the fact that I can't find propane fillers to save my life out this way, while any gas station in these parts has diesel.

Just wondering if anyone ones one of these and has good/bad impressions.


If you are boondocking in summer, you may want the genny for A/C for several hours a day, which could last you several days if you fill the rig w/ diesel. I do not think a propane genny has as long a capacity.

If you want to boondock in winter, the furnace will be using propane as well as the genny for microwave and maybe to recharge house batteries.

It may depend on length and season of boondock sessions - overnite, or weeks?

* This post was edited 06/20/12 10:03am by burlmart *


2005 Trail Lite 213 B-Plus w/ 6.0 Chevy


mlts22

Austin, Texas

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Posted: 06/20/12 01:12pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I do my boondocking in the Texas "winter", generally on weekends. However, one issue is that on non La NiƱa years, there is a good chance for sudden ice storms with maybe a couple hours warning at most, making roads impassible (snow chains don't do much on black ice) for 3-5 days. A diesel generator would allow both heating on the MH's fuel tank (an electric heater or heat strip, plus heating pads on the tanks), as well as the propane furnace. I'm sure people in northern climates have to deal with being snowed in and blizzards, so this isn't news to a lot of people here.

burlmart

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Posted: 06/20/12 02:37pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I was totally unclear

Correction

If you are boondocking in summer, you may want the diesel genny for A/C for several hours a day, which could last you several days if you fill the rig w/ diesel. I do not think a propane genny has as long a capacity.

No A/C in winter, but even still, If you want to boondock in winter and choose a propane genny, the furnace will be using propane as well as the genny for microwave and to recharge house batteries. Again, a fast drain on a limited propane tank size.


Seems like propane furnace is more efficient than running an electric heater with either genny. I like to minimize trips for propane fills, so I would probably put up w/ the smell and have the diesel genset.

Dakzuki

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Posted: 06/20/12 03:56pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

For boondocking in the winter I (and my friends) use a separate small gasoline generator. They are small, quiet and efficient. You just leave them running to keep the batteries topped up. You can leave them running overnight too and they won't keep you awake when in eco mode.

You might want to consider a catalytic heater for winter boondocking too.

gerrym51

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Posted: 06/20/12 04:56pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

mlts22 wrote:

Just wondering what people's opinions are on the FR Solera class C. Luckily, two RV dealers in my area both sell and service these. I also found a very polite Mercedes Sprinter dealer in the same area who can also do detailed chassis/engine work should the need arise.

Here is what I've seen from first glance:

They come standard with the "arctic package", which means heat pads and ducts on the tanks. Even in Texas, this is a must because of the unpredictable weather.

The Murphy bed in the 24MS is a cool idea and allows for a bigger bathroom. However, I wonder how reliable the motor on the bed will be. If it dies when the bed is up, that means less sleeping space, no big deal. If it dies while down, it means the slide can't be retracted, so one is stuck unless there is some manual override.

I wonder if the 1230 or so pounds of CCC is enough. Assuming dry weight, that means just with all tanks full, the vehicle is nearly overloaded if not completely, and that is even before I sit in there or toss bedding and clothes in the coach.

Another side question: The Solera offers a diesel generator as an option. Does that have a better run time than the standard propane 3.2 genset? I live in Texas, and having a long generator run time for the A/C can make or break a boondocking expedition, so would a diesel make a difference? This is compounded by the fact that I can't find propane fillers to save my life out this way, while any gas station in these parts has diesel.

Just wondering if anyone ones one of these and has good/bad impressions.


lippert makes the slides and there is a manual overide

mwebber78

New England

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Posted: 06/20/12 10:38pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Consider build quality too, I've had a fair share of just sloppy build issues with my FR product. If you're handy like me they aren't a big issue. If you're not into odds and ends jobs shop elsewhere. The FR product is priced aggressively but the quality, overall, is mediocre.


2013 Jayco Eagle 334RBTS
Disclaimer for the daft: Don't confuse my opinion with facts.


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