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Open Roads Forum  >  Class C Motorhomes  >  Class C

 > Was just gifted a RV. Excited but worried. 80 dodge jamboree

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adelii

tucson

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Posted: 01/19/18 09:45pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

So I have been telling my wife that when I turn 40, I am going to buy an RV. I am currently 37. While having a family get together my wife started going on about how I was going to get one in 3 years, when her father told me he had one in his yard and he would give it to me.

Of course I accepted. Its a fixer upper for sure. A 1980 dodge sportsman Jamboree. It has a queen bed above the cab and a bathroom in the rear of the rv. I am super excited but just realized. I know nothing about RVing.

I got into this 3 years earlier then expected. So here I am. Trying to learn as much as possible. I am going to pick it tommorrow and get it to my house to start cleaning it and figuring everything out.

All I have so far is the vin and a few pictures. I hope I get all the help I need here. and where to start. The vin is not 17 characters

f44cd9v720442

Thanks
[image]

* This post was last edited 01/24/18 02:44am by an administrator/moderator *   View edit history

coolmom42

Middle Tennessee

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Posted: 01/19/18 10:24pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I don't want to rain on your parade.... but unless you are very mechanically skilled, you will be better off selling it for scrap. There is no gasket, caulk, or piece of rubber on that thing that is not completely dry rotted and cracked. It may also have a good bit of mouse damage.

It may not be molded/rotted if it's spent most of its life in Arizona.

Now if you have some remote place you could park it and use it for a cabin, it might function like a hard-sided tent. Get it there on a flat-bed tow truck. Put it up on blocks. You could replace all the soft furnishings---mattress, sofa, etc, and use it for a camping spot.


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Son of Norway

Denver, Colorado

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Posted: 01/19/18 10:42pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Look at what I have, I wouldn't have any business raining on your parade. We started out with a 1972 Winnebago. Step 1: Make sure it will run. Step 2: Make sure it will stop. Then take it from there. Go on the forum to ask any specific questions. Welcome to the forum.


Miles and Darcey
1989 Holiday Rambler Crown Imperial
Denver, CO


toedtoes

California

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Posted: 01/19/18 11:42pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have a 1975 Dodge American Clipper class C so I can offer some "been there done that" advice:

1. Replace all the rubber. That means tires, belt, hoses, etc. Including fuel lines. Vehicles that old can have pinprick holes in the fuel line which not only drop your mpg, but can be very dangerous.

2. Have the propane system checked out thoroughly. Again, a leak could be very dangerous.

Now you get to the rest of the stuff:

3. Reseal all the edges, windows, vents, etc. At this point, just seal so you don't get anymore damage than may already be there. Then you can do repair/reconstruction work on old leak damage. Remember to always check for leaks after a rain - it only takesone storm to do a whole lot of damage.

According to vinwiz.com, your chassis is actually a 1979. This is common to have the chassis be a year prior to the house. It is also a 440 engine. The 440s commonly have overheating issues due to the confined space in the doghouse. So you may find you need to make some adjustments for best operation.

Take it slow and easy and you may find you have a great RV. There are many on the road today.

Please feel free to PM me if you'd like more resources, etc.


1975 American Clipper RV with Dodge 360 (photo in profile)
1998 American Clipper Fold n Roll Folding Trailer
Both born in Morgan Hill, CA to Irv Perch (Daddy of the Aristocrat trailers)

ronfisherman

SE Michigan

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Posted: 01/20/18 03:00am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Welcome to RV.NET
Here is a thread that will help with chassis care.
How many of us are there? Owners of Dodge based RV's?


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ksg5000

Oregon

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Posted: 01/20/18 03:17am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Free is nice - but old RV's can be spendy to fix up. Tires alone are spendy and even finding a mechanic who knows how to tune an old vehicle is hard in my area. Your father in law maybe a nice resource to figure out what needs immediate attention.


Kevin

adelii

tucson

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Posted: 01/20/18 03:58am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thank you everybody for the replies. I am very aware of the project im about to embark on. As for the RV. It does runnand stop, so thats a plus. That was #1. I am pretty mechanically inclinded, and my father and in law are too. They have way more knowledge then me.

I wasnt planning on this for another 3 years so ill take the project on and do as much as I can myself. My inlaw said that the generator was rebulit by him so that is something. As soon as we move it and I can get it to my house ill clean it and really get some good pics to see where I am at.

definitaly changing all the rubbers is the first priority, and getting it safe. As far as propane systems and water tanks, and even the generator, its all new to me.

I have seen way older things on the road and they are still running. I hope to be one of these. As far as I see it, my in law just saved me 12-18k. That was my budget for a used RV I was looking for.

PartyOf Five

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Posted: 01/20/18 04:08am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Free is good, but sometimes has long strings attached. I'd treat it as my training ground for the next three years... Do the basic maintenance everyone said -like gospel. Then stay in it a night and see what you think- on your driveway.
Then go to the closest Campground for a weekend, and keep learning. Then take a weekend trip -close enough to be towed home.

Rv'ng is a lifestyle choice, aka requires disposable income and a focus on the word choice. Everything costs money, not a lot- unless you choose to 'invest' it.

By the time you get to forty, you'll know if it's for you, or you'll have had your fun and be ready to travel in a different way.

Be deliberate, spontaneous, and also safe- just remember to Enjoy EVERY Moment. Your biggest dream just came true, literally lol.


Da Moose - 2001 Dutchman 31' on E450

gbopp

The Keystone State

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Posted: 01/20/18 04:51am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Welcome to the forum and congrats on your 'new' RV.
You are going into this knowing it's a project. So, take your time and assess the condition before taking action.

Etenabond and Dicore Self Leveling Lap Sealant are excellent products for sealing the roof.
A small leak can cause a lot of damage if not repaired. You want to eliminate leaks before doing any interior work.

You will probably need tires. RV tires usually age out before they wear out. Many replace tires between 6-10 years.

Don't hesitate to ask questions on the forum, someone will have the answer.
Enjoy the learning experience. At one time, we all knew nothing about RV's. [emoticon]

Scottiemom

South Dakota/Indiana

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Posted: 01/20/18 05:44am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You would be surprised at how many "older" motorhomes you see out there on the road. Here's how I would look at it. . .

I wouldn't plan on making long cross country trips, but I would clean it up and learn as much as you can about the systems and how they work. I would think your FIL would have some knowledge and be willing to give you some advice.

Once you have her cleaned and fixed up, take her out for weekends at a local park or state park, lake, etc., that has a campground. Enjoy the time together and don't be worried. . . things will not always go as planned, but you should be able to have some fun.

For the money it costs you to fix her up and enjoy those weekends, I think your investment will actually be quite small. You can decide if you like "camping" and what you would change if you could. Camping on the weekends will give you a chance to meet other campers and exchange ideas and stories.

Why not give it a go? When I see old campers in the campground, I tell my husband. . . "they are having just as much fun as we are." Good luck!

Dale


Dale Pace
Wife to Terry (Teacher's Pet)
Mom to Scottish Terrier, Duchess
2006 Tiffin Phaeton 40'(Phaeton Place)
2014 Ford Flex
2004 R-Vision Trail-lite 213 (MinnieMee)
Fulltiming since 2005

http://www.skoolzoutforever.blogspot.com/
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