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 > First trip in Class A driving in Smokey Mountains

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MetalGator

Florida

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Posted: 11/11/19 06:54am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We just completed a trip to North Carolina from Florida with our 2018 Miramar 35.3. We towed my wife's 4 door Jeep Wrangler. I was very happy with the performance. For the most part, I was able to maintain the speed limit going up the grades. The one exception was one 8% grade where I was only able to maintain about 40mph in a 55 mph zone. I think I could have maintained a better speed but halfway up there was a construction zone where the speed limit was 35mph so I lost my momentum. Yes, the V10 revved quite a bit on the big climbs but it did the job. I am sure a DP would have done better and I know the Smokeys are small compared to the Rockies but I was pleased with the performance. After reading some of the comments over the years about class A's really struggling up grades, I was a little apprehensive while planning this trip. Now with one trip under my belt, I am looking forward to our next trip.

I was also pleased with the engine braking. I put the transmission in tow/haul mode and tapping the breaks would downshift. On a couple of the 8% downhill grades, I would have to jab the breaks a few times to bleed off some speed but the engine/transmission really helped keep the speeds down. Again, not trying to compare to a exhaust brake on a DP but I thought the RV did great.


2018 Miramar 35.3
2005 Dodge Ram Quad Cab 1500
4 fur kids (Murphy, Monty, Lola and Pinto)

rgatijnet1

Florida

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Posted: 11/11/19 07:19am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I mostly travel in the Western mountains and have had no problem with the Western grades. Occasionally I am slowed down but for the most part, so are the DP's. Not all DP's can roar up a mountain grade, and most owners do not want to anyway. I used to have a DP and changed because of floor plan and do not miss the slight power difference. As far as decent braking, again, it is more technique than anything else.
The facts are that during your travels, in the East or West, the steeper grads happen so infrequently that they are really nothing to be concerned about. For 99.9999999% of your travels, your engine, as with anyone else's, will do just fine. Actually I have never heard of anyone on this forum stating that their coach COULD NOT make it to the top of any highway hill. It might take a little longer but they all got to their destination. So will you.

grldst

Dallas, GA

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Posted: 11/11/19 08:40am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My first experience with the Ford V-10 was about 5 yrs ago when I bought a used 2000 Rexhall Aerbus. I used this RV for 3 yrs and put about 30,000 miles on it driving from Atlanta to Montana, Atlanta to Arizona and Atlanta to Mexico.

I consider the V-10 the best gas engine I've ever had. Lots of power, smooth running and never had any issues. On the Montana trip we were towing a 4wd Chevy Suburban. The engine had 40,000 miles on it when I bought it, a bit over 70,000 when I sold it. Changed oil every 5000 miles and never had to add between changes.

The Aerbus had a 4 speed transmission, and would shift down to 3rd on most climbs, and 2nd on a few, but really didn't do that much worse then the diesels I've had. Expecting a motorhome, diesel or gas, to climb every mountain pass at speed limits speeds, is not going to happen.

GREGORYJ

Lac Du Bonnet, Manitoba

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Posted: 11/11/19 09:51am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I agree with other's comments and it sounds like you did everything right, especially going down hill and not letting your speed build up and get out of control. I never worry about slowing down going up hill as I know there is nothing I can do about it and put on the 4 way flashers when under 45 mph. In the mountains out west, often I may end up following a semi who is also slowed down by the up hill grade and I usually back off a bit on my engine RPMs as it can be many miles to the top.


Ellen & Greg
08 National Dolphin DL-35Ci, Kelderman Air Ride, Rear Trac Bar
Workhorse W22, RoadMaster Rear Sway Bar, Towing 08 Smart Car


FloridaRosebud

Melbourne

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Posted: 11/11/19 10:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

MetalGator wrote:

We just completed a trip to North Carolina from Florida with our 2018 Miramar 35.3. We towed my wife's 4 door Jeep Wrangler. I was very happy with the performance. For the most part, I was able to maintain the speed limit going up the grades. The one exception was one 8% grade where I was only able to maintain about 40mph in a 55 mph zone. I think I could have maintained a better speed but halfway up there was a construction zone where the speed limit was 35mph so I lost my momentum. Yes, the V10 revved quite a bit on the big climbs but it did the job. I am sure a DP would have done better and I know the Smokeys are small compared to the Rockies but I was pleased with the performance. After reading some of the comments over the years about class A's really struggling up grades, I was a little apprehensive while planning this trip. Now with one trip under my belt, I am looking forward to our next trip.

I was also pleased with the engine braking. I put the transmission in tow/haul mode and tapping the breaks would downshift. On a couple of the 8% downhill grades, I would have to jab the breaks a few times to bleed off some speed but the engine/transmission really helped keep the speeds down. Again, not trying to compare to a exhaust brake on a DP but I thought the RV did great.


Yeah, like you I was apprehensive going on my first trip in the Smokeys last year, but it ended up being easy. Like everyone said here, (my interpretation), learn your rig, know your limitations, and don't be stupid and a V10 Ford will work just fine.

Al

dodge guy

Bartlett IL

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Posted: 11/11/19 12:11pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The V-10 will do everything you want it to do. Never had an issue with my 02 V-10 Excursion and 35ft TT combined weight around 18k lbs.

To add to that. I’ve been out west as well as the East. While there are more mountain roads out west, there are some in the east that rival the what can be found in the west!

My next purchase will be a 5 star tune for my current MH. I had it with the Excursion and it was amazing. I’m expecting the same for my 2012. What I’m looking to do is improve on the drive by wire system. The factory programming pulls too much throttle when you really need it.


Wife Kim
Son Brandon 17yrs
Daughter Marissa 16yrs
Dog Bailey

12 Forest River Georgetown 350TS Hellwig sway bars, BlueOx TrueCenter stabilizer

13 Ford Explorer Roadmaster Stowmaster 5000, VIP Tow>
A bad day camping is
better than a good day at work!


crawford

Dandridge Tenn.

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Posted: 11/12/19 07:01pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I live here in smoky mnts and I come and go with my V10 no problem and yes the V 10 does love high RPM's when needed just enjoy our mountains.


Change from a c class to a A class Georgetown 07 triple slide

stvdman

MD

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Posted: 11/14/19 04:09am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

MetalG: Glad to hear your rig is driving/performing well. We both bought 35.2's about the same time (mine is a 17 though). I have been pleasantly surprised by the driving and power characteristics of the V-10 w/6-speed trans.

So much so that our "want" of a Diesel has subsided a little. Not ENTIRELY, but a little [emoticon]

scbwr

North Ridgeville, OH

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Posted: 11/14/19 06:00am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

dodge guy wrote:

The V-10 will do everything you want it to do. Never had an issue with my 02 V-10 Excursion and 35ft TT combined weight around 18k lbs.

To add to that. I’ve been out west as well as the East. While there are more mountain roads out west, there are some in the east that rival the what can be found in the west!

My next purchase will be a 5 star tune for my current MH. I had it with the Excursion and it was amazing. I’m expecting the same for my 2012. What I’m looking to do is improve on the drive by wire system. The factory programming pulls too much throttle when you really need it.


I'm happy with the 5 Star Tune mod that I installed on our Bay Star. The modification to the shifting points is the most noticeable improvement and I feel it accelerates a bit better when merging onto highways or passing another vehicle.

The Ford V10 meets our needs and budget. A nice DP certainly has quite a few benefits, but it comes at a price.


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

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

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