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Open Roads Forum  >  Class A Motorhomes  >  General Topics

 > Input on a few models for FT

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way2roll

Wilmington NC

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Posted: 01/15/20 10:24am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

As we start seriously looking at rigs to make the shift to full time next year we are narrowing down floor plans that we "think' would suit us best. Our experience thus far has been entry level class a 30 footers as we are not full timers and didn't need anything else for the past 7 years. I have decided against a DP - for various reasons but mainly cost and that we don't plan to FT forever, maybe a year or so. I TOTALLY understand the advantages of a DP, but we plan on short travel days and long stays so most of the DP advantages we would pay for aren't going to be realized. We are a family of 3, our son will be graduating HS next year and I work remotely full time, DW does mostly blog type work. We thought this is the prime time to take our son on a serious tour of the US before he commits to college or a job etc. Our budget hovers around $50-80k. We have narrowed floor plans down to 3, but we are still very open to suggestions. Looking at plans that have separate rooms, a decent area to set up a work-space, plenty of storage, raised rail pass through storage a plus,Front drop down bunk, and a washer/dryer. We will be towing a CRV, we have ready brute elite bars etc.

I have always loved the floor plan of the Damon 37kt. The separate "room" in the front seems perfect for a teenager and it's really the most segmented type of RV I have seen. The Coachmen 37TZ seems to be an identical replica but looks like the fit and finish is a bit lower than the Damon (and I get that Thor owns Damon - nuff said). These 2 floor plans check a lot of boxes but in doing so it's a little claustrophobic inside - I have no real world experience in this model though, only show walk throughs. The open concept and side aisle design of the Georgetown 377TS is nice, but finding one with a bunk is a needle in a haystack, and you can't really close that off for my son's privacy. But like I said, they check off a lot of boxes. I've looked at the Winnie 36Y and I do like it's concept but with slides in a lot of the kitchen is inaccessible.

Does anyone have any real world experience with any of these or have any suggestions to other floor plans that would fit?

Appreciate the input.

Executive

California/Arizona/South Dakota

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Posted: 01/15/20 12:41pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

For your particular situation, I'd look at some fivers instead of a motor home. Lots more options for your 'living' situations. Not ruling out motor homes, just thinking you might consider a different option. Teens do like their privacy......Dennis


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way2roll

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Posted: 01/15/20 12:51pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Executive wrote:

For your particular situation, I'd look at some fivers instead of a motor home. Lots more options for your 'living' situations. Not ruling out motor homes, just thinking you might consider a different option. Teens do like their privacy......Dennis


Thanks Dennis, I have looked quite a bit at Fivers and you are right, they offer the best living and working options. But I just can't bring myself to not having a MH. The convenience of everything while driving, set up, etc, - not telling you anything you don't know, add the cost of a truck to pull a fiver and the fiver itself, almost eclipses my budget. Agreed it's the best set up once you get set up, But we really love all the other things that only a MH brings. Still not ruling them out completely though. We also travel with a cat and that can get complicated travelling in a truck vs a MH.

* This post was edited 01/15/20 01:04pm by way2roll *

Bill.Satellite

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Posted: 01/15/20 04:10pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Not one person here can help you with the problem of deciding what floor plan is right for you. You appear to have made a sound choice about DP or not so you now just need to spend as much time as possible inside a large variety of MH's to determine what's right for you. Take your time. Try to "spend a day" in the RV over the course of an hour or so and see where the 2 of you would bump into each other. Where will you both be during cocktails or while watching TV? Can you both see the TV without turning your head? Are you comfortable sitting on the toilet? Is the shower large enough/tall enough? Is there counter space to fix your meals? Can the fridge be accessed while driving? What if a slide gets stuck, can you still live in the coach? Options, accessories, wants, needs, requirements! You should have requirements! Once you know what they are, don't accept a floor plan without them all or you will not be happy. It took us years to find the coach we have been living in since 1999 and we are on a years long search to find a replacement but we haven't found one yet!


What I post is my 2 cents and nothing more. Please don't read anything into my post that's not there. If you disagree, that's OK.
Can't we all just get along?

way2roll

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Posted: 01/15/20 04:59pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Bill.Satellite wrote:

Not one person here can help you with the problem of deciding what floor plan is right for you. You appear to have made a sound choice about DP or not so you now just need to spend as much time as possible inside a large variety of MH's to determine what's right for you. Take your time. Try to "spend a day" in the RV over the course of an hour or so and see where the 2 of you would bump into each other. Where will you both be during cocktails or while watching TV? Can you both see the TV without turning your head? Are you comfortable sitting on the toilet? Is the shower large enough/tall enough? Is there counter space to fix your meals? Can the fridge be accessed while driving? What if a slide gets stuck, can you still live in the coach? Options, accessories, wants, needs, requirements! You should have requirements! Once you know what they are, don't accept a floor plan without them all or you will not be happy. It took us years to find the coach we have been living in since 1999 and we are on a years long search to find a replacement but we haven't found one yet!


Amen to all that. The MH's we've had to date have a lot of concessions that are much easier to manage when it's only a week at a time. Hitting a couple shows this month (knowing we are buying used ), nothing beats actually spending time in a lot of MH's and taking tons of notes and pics. Unfortunately 2 of the plans I like are no longer in production. Not a big deal for the used market, but makes actually seeing them difficult.

Executive

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Posted: 01/16/20 10:56am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Sounds like you need to take a trip to Texas. [emoticon] There are several large consignment dealers around the Houston area. PPL is one and they now have two locations. All their coaches are unlocked and there's no salesman pressure. You simply go and look at your leisure. That said, it's a lot more fun looking when you're not buying. Best of luck in your search. Once you've found the floor plan you can live with, come back and you should be able to get some ideas about that coach's lineage....Dennis

way2roll

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Posted: 01/16/20 12:01pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Executive wrote:

Sounds like you need to take a trip to Texas. [emoticon] There are several large consignment dealers around the Houston area. PPL is one and they now have two locations. All their coaches are unlocked and there's no salesman pressure. You simply go and look at your leisure. That said, it's a lot more fun looking when you're not buying. Best of luck in your search. Once you've found the floor plan you can live with, come back and you should be able to get some ideas about that coach's lineage....Dennis


Pretty much narrowed it down to those 3 floor plans I mentioned. I'm fairly hip to the lineage if you are referring to manufacturers. The 37KT was Damon's offering and while owned by Thor I still think it had some of the legacy quality from Damon - that said there are horror stories out there about these models- but lots of good ones too. (there are horror stories about every make and model from every manufacturer though). The coachman version - not sure their quality is any better frankly, and fit and finish is definitely worse than the Damon - at least from pics. Given my druthers I'd opt for a Newmar or Tiffin, but there isn't a single floor plan in either lineup we like. Winnie's 36Y is a maybe but there are a lot of concessions on that one. Of the main 3 plans we like, the Georgetown is probably the safest bet in terms of quality. So while lineage/manufacturer and quality are important, the Best quality MH is miserable if the floor plan just doesn't work. I think another reason to buy used - get one with the bugs all worked out - unless of course you buy someone else's problem - lots of due diligence. Not sure about a TX trip simply to peruse MH's, we'll start with shows, and move from there. There are used models available not too far from here for each of these models so the plan as we get closer is to go spend time in them.

Back on topic, I was really looking for owner feedback of these models (DAMON 37KT, Coachmen 37TZF and the FR 377TS). I did a search on the forum and couldn't find any posts about these specific models. Maybe I'll have to join those forums. And of course I am open to suggestions on other models/plans.

DSDP Don

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Posted: 01/17/20 09:45pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

When we were looking for our first DP, we narrowed down the field, but kept coming back to one model. We asked the dealer to leave us alone and spent few hours over several different visits, just sitting in the motor home and mentally lving in the unit. We pictured doing day to day activities and which position woukd be comfortable for both of us in the evenings as we relaxed. It realy helped.


Don & Mary
2019 Newmar Dutch Star 4018 - All Electric
2016 GMC Canyon 4WD Crew Cab


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