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 > Info Re 1998 Safari Continental Panther - Can you help?

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Reidgreh

MN

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Posted: 01/09/19 03:27pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I am a first time RV buyer considering a 1998 Safari Continental Panther with 22k miles. Some important mechanical details re this coach:

Magnum Chassis with 8 air bags, Velvet Ride Suspension By BF Good Rich, Single 14FT Slide, 425HP CAT C-12, Silverleaf engine monitoring system , diesel fired Hurricane boiler continuous hot water heating system (comparable to Hydro Hot), Fiberglass roof, 7500 watt Onan quiet diesel generator, 2000 watt inverter, power cord reel.

Any help in tips to evaluate this coach and watch-outs would be greatly appreciated. Also thoughts on parts availability issues that I may run into and the ability to convert systems over to other newer systems/brands without part availability issues

donn0128

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Posted: 01/09/19 04:17pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Body parts? None. Appliances? Standard fare available almost anywhere. But a 20 year old MH no matter how nice is going to need things. There comes a point where the cost of maintenance exceeds value. Tires? They could eat up a couple thousand dollars easily.


Don,Lorri,and Charlie Bear 2016
8 years OSP Camp Host
The Other Dallas


Reidgreh

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Posted: 01/09/19 04:24pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for feedback. Tires replaced Feb 2018 as well as 2 AC units. Biggest concern starts with the suspension (considering the engine checks out OK). Owner says it has 8 airbags plus torsalistic suspension (Velvet Ride by BF Goodrich) - is this possible?

Big Katuna

Deland, FL

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Posted: 01/09/19 04:30pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Have the airbags been replaced? They age. You might get a quote and be sitting down when they break the news.


My Kharma ran over my Dogma.

Acampingwewillgo

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Posted: 01/09/19 07:12pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Having a '96 motorhome myself, I can speak to some of your concerns. First off, lets dispel the myth about a CAT engine...any competent mechanic can work on your CAT including Cummin's mechanics.


Without a doubt, things wear out, I can go through what I've replaced in the 15-16 years I've owned ours: Air conditioners, Residential Refer, I redid the floors, replaced Water Heater, replaced alternator, just last year, I had the Trans ECU/TCU rebuilt, tires, batteries, belts, filters, fluids. No updates or major work on exterior or mechanically.

My air bags are still going strong as well as my Koni shocks(as far as I know, all original). I had my MH Heater, a Webasto serviced at Quartzsite by the Aqua Hot tech....same burner and parts as the newer units. I've been extremely Happy with the Vogue...they don't build them like these are built anymore!


96 Vogue Prima Vista
The Kid's: Humphrie, the Mini Schnauzer and Georgie,wire haired dachshund, Senior Cavalier Rosie
Rainbow Bridge: Laddie,Scoutie,Katie,Cooper,Kodie,Rubie,Maggie, Cassie and Mollie, Elvis Love You!

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jplante4

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Posted: 01/09/19 07:28pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Air bags and Velvet ride are counter-intuitive. Usually Safari coaches have one or the other. This indicates an owner that didn't understand how to adjust the Velvet ride torsion bars.

Safaris were well built coaches. 22k miles is low and indicates lack of use.

Get the engine number and call 1-877-777-3126 (CAT hotline). They can tell you about any CAT shop Mx performed.


Jerry & Jeanne
1996 Safari Sahara 3530 - 'White Tiger'
CAT 3126/Allison 6 speed/Magnum Chassis
2014 Equinox AWD / Blue Ox


MrWizard

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Posted: 01/09/19 09:42pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

the lower compartment doors are stainless steel
the exterior body is Alu, with custom paint
the Magnum chassis was factory built by Safari Motorcoach
torsolastic was custom safari design, replacement parts from one supplier

velvet ride is the airbags ?
from the factory it came with one or the other NOT both

airbags might be an Add-on or the owner is incorrectly describing something

the chassis and body are rock solid, do not DE-laminate , do not rot, or sag

Safari users group on Yahoo, great place for detailed info and help


Radiate The Happy
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Two Jayhawks

Lenexa Kansas

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Posted: 01/10/19 08:17am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

jplante4 wrote:

Air bags and Velvet ride are counter-intuitive. Usually Safari coaches have one or the other. This indicates an owner that didn't understand how to adjust the Velvet ride torsion bars.

Safaris were well built coaches. 22k miles is low and indicates lack of use.

Get the engine number and call 1-877-777-3126 (CAT hotline). They can tell you about any CAT shop Mx performed.


There are Safari's that have both but you are correct they sure didn't come OE that way. When BF Goodrich killed replacement parts availability for the Velvet Ride many Safari owners were in a bad spot. I know I was. Years ago I was able to source replacement tubes, with much difficulty and wallet pain. But the good news was the tube replacement was actually a DIY job with help. I sold my Velvet Ride coach in 2015 with a healthy & new torsilastic suspension. Before I decided to sell I was in communication with two sources that offered an air suspension kit to be added to the Velvet Ride. Monaco was one & Pioneer Metal Works was the other. I believe both were around $4K for the kit. I was given a couple references to talk with that had added the kit. Biggest drawback as I remember it is even with the air bag install the tubes still needed to be healthy so it didn't really eliminate the danger of one day finding no replacement parts availability. Of course this was about six years ago maybe an alternative source for the tubes is available today?


Bill & Kelli
2015 DSDP 4366 pulling a 2014 Ford Edge
2002 Safari Zanzibar 3906 gone
1995 Fleetwood Bounder 36JD gone



Two Jayhawks

Lenexa Kansas

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Posted: 01/10/19 09:49am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Not familiar with these folks but this was not around (to my knowledge) back when I was looking. Source for torsilastic parts

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