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Open Roads Forum  >  Class A Motorhomes  >  General Topics

 > Just lurking around the "A's"

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lincolnmatthews

PNW WA

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Posted: 12/29/18 10:00pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

[emoticon] Been looking (on the net)at gas class A's lately. Currently own a 2014 Lance 1181 on a Older Dodge diesel 4x4, which I plan on keeping as my camping in the hills rig. But do to the long wet winters in the NW, been thinking about a used A. My budget at this point is about 30-40k, I'm leaning towards a Fleetwood Southwind 32-34ft (want to keep it somewhat small for the parks etc.

I also seem to be drawn towards the floorplans, wood finish etc of the Fleetwood's, I'm sure there are others more desirable (as the Fleetwood's are more entry level, correct?)

Also trying to avoid the Chevy 8.1 & Workhorse chassis & going with the Ford, is this also correct? I really like the 33C Fleetwood but at this time is just to pricey, maybe I should wait a couple more yrs & let them depreciate more.

Anyway appreciate opinions for my many questions, thanks!

happy-2

calif

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Posted: 12/29/18 11:57pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Make SURE you get a rig with full body paint. And always check the top and roof.

timmac

Las Vegas

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Posted: 12/30/18 12:08am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

In the 30 to 40 thousand range will get you the older Ford chassis, 06 and newer has the 3 valve V-10 with the 5 speed tow-haul, much better chassis than the older version.

Fleetwood makes good units, my 08 Bounder has been a great unit, no major issues, early 09 Fleetwood went bankrupt and the company sold off to a new company with same name, cant say much about the newer Fleetwood's, I have own 3 Fleetwood's and all 3 were good quality.

Might need to spend up to $50,000 or more for the newer Ford chassis, its worth the extra cost and you might get a full body paint as well..

lincolnmatthews

PNW WA

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Posted: 12/30/18 05:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for the info, was looking at a 05 32V Fleetwood. After reading on the V-10 this may have the 3 valve head, being they came out in 05. What chassis is it? a 550 or a 650, am I correct that if its a 5 speed trans versus the 6 speed its an older chassis? At least the 05 would have the later heads with the 8 threads per spark plug hole.

I know these are fuel hogs but any gas pot would be in a motor home, my brother in law just bought a new Jayco 31ft C with this engine & we followed him to AK this past Aug & couldn't believe how many times he stopped for fuel! Good thing I wouldn't drive this thing much, maybe I should wait & get a small diesel rig, thanks.

Tvov

CT

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Posted: 12/30/18 05:36am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

What do you mean by "full body paint"? Are some Class A only partially painted? Or does this have something to do with decals?


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2008 F-250 CrewCab 5.4L,
2004 21' Forest River Surveyor


Dutch_12078

Winters south, summers north

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Posted: 12/30/18 06:02am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The Ford stripped chassis model used in Class A RV's is an F53. Our '01 has a 95 gallon gas tank, and we average about 500 miles between fill-ups, not letting it go below a quarter of a tank.


Dutch
2001 GBM Landau 34' Class A
F53 chassis, Triton V10, TST TPMS
Bigfoot Automatic Leveling System
2011 Toyota RAV4 4WD/Remco pump
ReadyBrute Elite tow bar/Blue Ox baseplate


scbwr

North Ridgeville, OH

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Posted: 12/30/18 06:23am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Many motorhomes and other RVs just have the fiberglass sides and then use decals for finishing the design. That's why you will see older units with faded decals and sides that have gotten faded or weathered. Full body paint is either an upgrade or found on higher end units and has the advantage that it will hold up longer IF taken care of i.e. it's no different than a used car that can be fairly old but still looks great because it has been taken care of over the years.

Our Newmar was just purchased this past spring. Initially, we were trying to find something for $40K or less and what we found in gas motorhomes wasn't too good. The older rigs have a lot of carpeting which starts looking pretty bad and is costly to replace with either new carpeting or other flooring. Many of the units we looked at had cracked, faded decals and showed a lot of weathering due to UV exposure. I only say this to make you aware of the difficulty you may find in finding a really good unit in that price range....and I know others will say that they are out there! But, be prepared for a long search.

We ended up deciding to spend more to get the benefit of buying a newer MH that would need less work and would have the 5 speed transmission. We also ended up narrowing our search to gas motorhomes made by Tiffin, Newmar and Winnebago/Itasca although if we had found the right deal on something else, we may have considered it. I will say that we are really happy with the Bay Star we found. Some of the details that I would recommend are: 2 AC units, 7K generator which can provide enough power to run both air conditioners, dual pane windows (no condensation), full body paint, and no slide-out extending under the patio awning (that's a real personal preference!).

When comparing gas motorhomes, make sure to compare tank capacities for fresh water, gray and black water as there is quite a bit of difference depending on the manufacturer/model. Also consider that it's really best to have 2 or more AC units and a generator that will allow you to run both if you plan on staying in hot temperatures. Also, read up on modifications for the Ford chassis which improve handling on the road. The previous owner of our MH added Summo springs along with a rear track bar. Be sure to have the front end alignment checked as that can be a major factor in handling. Ours had never been done in spite of Newmar recommending it be done after the MH is loaded with personal gear and tanks filled.

I didn't mean for this reply to get so long...but I suggest that you do a lot of research on class A gas motorhomes. We're happy with ours and feel it should meet our needs. But there are reasons why the diesel motorhomes are more popular.

Good luck with your search and I hope you find a winner!


2012 Newmar Bay Star 3302
Blue Ox Avail
BrakeBuddy Advantage
2015 Malibu

"Get busy living, or get busy dying."
Andy Dufresne, The Shawshank Redemption

angler

WI

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Posted: 12/30/18 09:00am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I'll say it[emoticon] I wouldn't avoid the workhorse chassis if you're looking for one prior to 2011 or so. I think both ford and chev made good chassis. Both have good engines.


2002 Tiffin Allegro Bay 35DB
Workhorse 8.1

Tom/Barb

Oak Harbor, Wa

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Posted: 12/30/18 09:49am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My advice for your needs.

https://skagit.craigslist.org/rvd/d/burlington-used-2001-beaver-patriot/6781281300.html

We are 40' and have never had any problems fitting in any camp space.


2000 Newmar mountain aire 4081 DP, ISC/350 Allison 6 speed, Wrangler JK toad.

Tom/Barb

Oak Harbor, Wa

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Posted: 12/30/18 10:00am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

OR.
https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/2001-Newmar-Mountain-Aire-4094-5005626501

when we were looking we were trying to find a 34-36 diesel pusher, ended up getting a 40' and love it. the extra lenght doesn't make a hoot in the driving, but is huge in living space.

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