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 > Brand New, Just beginning process

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bgum

South Louisiana

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Joined: 02/22/2006

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Posted: 08/21/21 08:58am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Whatever you decide on check out the front and rear roof really good. A roof leak is a deal breaker and is somewhat common. You may want to take a inspector or rv tech with you.

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 08/21/21 11:35am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lwiddis wrote:

Avoid all RVs you can’t pull, afford etc. That will cut the clutter in you head and make it easier to decide.


Per their post, saying they know what they can pull and know their budget would seem to cover this recommendation…


2016 Ram 2500, MotorOps.ca EFIlive tuned, 5” turbo back, 6" lift on 37s
2017 Heartland Torque T29

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 08/21/21 11:43am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

OP, no, there is basically no comprehensive google ready real world comparison of brands models, types, years, etc.
Doing your homework, of which rvnet is a great source of information, you’ll be able to narrow down the “premium” brands like Lance, Grand Design, Northwoods, Outdoors RV and see the differences between them and the cheaper tin can RVs.
From there, the list should be narrowing significantly.
Personally, especially for new to RVing folks, the sweet spot is the few years old models. Both from price standpoint and reliability. RVs seem to have more “warranty” type issues than a vehicle imo. The defect type stuff usually shows up early and then gets fixed. So you generally get the benefit of the defect or warranty stuff out of the way but get a RV that has used up very little of its useful life.
Hope this helps.
Aside from that, as you narrow down options, ask questions here. Most popular models are owned by someone on this forum. Makes for a good second opinion.

Good luck!

Gdetrailer

PA

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Posted: 08/21/21 01:41pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Since you are not planning on buying new, totally avoid going to "RV shows", those will be a waste of your time or result in you blowing your budget by having to have a certain model/layout.

Buying anything right now whether new or used is going to be extremely expensive so your timing for getting into camping is not good in this respect.

Throw out the price guides, they truly do not mean a thing, folks selling used RVs are getting top dollar because the demand is high and supply of used units is very low.

Your gonna have to go with "gut feeling" on the price, it is what you and the seller can agree to and both fell comfortable with.

Your going to have to make a few concessions, you may not get your choice on layouts, colors and so on.

Start searching your local Craigslist.org postings, just be very leery of any listing that seems way out of this world too low, those are scammer posts and they are not bashful about stealing your money. Scammer listings often are easy to spot, typically they use really odd dollar amounts like $2001, $2102 and so on. Very few legit sellers bother with listing a $5,000 item for $5001..

Be careful of any seller that wants to ship a RV to you, those are scams.

Same goes for sellers asking for payment to be in giftcards, Walmart green cards, Western Union or any other untraceable and unreversable payment that is not cash and in person.

You can also drive around your area, I scored my current TT just because it was on my way to work and it was put out in the yard with a for sale sign on it.

Ask your friends to watch out for used trailers for sale, they may see a yard one for sale.

As far as leaks goes, yeah ALL RVs are subject to leaks, basically if it isn't leaking now, it will be eventually. Just be aware of possible long term water damage to ceiling or paneling. Warps or discoloration is typical signs of long term leaks. Check the floor at the door, near or around the fridge for weak spots and paneling around corners the windows for warping, discoloration or being soft.

toedtoes

California

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Posted: 08/21/21 03:39pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Here's some additional that hasn't been mentioned:

1. Test EVERY appliance and system in the trailer. If the seller gives you a reason why you can't test it, walk away. It will never fail - you won't test the water and when you get it home you find out the hot water tank has a hole. Or you don't test the electrical on 120v and 12v and find out the converter is bad. Test everything - no excuses, no reasons, no "we have to charge you to plug it in (yep, had that one on a lot- wanted $400 to plug it into an outlet for 5 minutes).

Stove
Fridge
Water heater
Electrical - 12v and 120v
Propane
Water pump
AC
Toilet

2. Check under cushions, mattresses, in corners of cupboards, etc, for signs of leaks.

3. Consider your "test the waters" minimum usage plan. For me, it was three 4-day trips per year for three years. As long as I met that minimum, I felt having a camper was worth it and I could consider upgrading to something I liked better. I also used that as an idea of how much to spend on a camper - my minimum usage equated to $2700 for lodging at $100 per night. So that was my max budget for a camper I didn't know if I would really enjoy.

My first trailer cost $1700. I used it just over my minimum usage. After three years, I knew what I liked and didn't like about the floorplan, rv type, etc. I was also much more knowledgable about maintenance and identifying issues. I also knew that I was going to use it a lot, so putting money into a camper wouldn't be a waste of money.

4. Nada, etc, mean nothing. Determine what the trailer is worth to you, add 5-10% (most of us lowball what we want to buy and highball what we want to sell) and offer that. As mentioned, right now prices are off the chart so it may take a while to find something.

5. When you check out the trailers, walk through your morning ritual, meal preptime and eating, and your nighttime ritual. Those are the times when a floorplan will fail.


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)

jimh406

Western MT

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Posted: 08/21/21 05:47pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

More than likely you won’t buy the right RV the first time. Even if it’s a TT, and you want a TT you’ll like find you want something a little different or find you have the wrong tow vehicle.

With that in mind start with a popular model that has decent resale value or rent one and try it out. The less money you invest the less you will lose.

A lot of RVs spend a lot of time at the dealers the first year while everything is being fixed under warranty, so don’t expect buying new is automatically going to be the best choice.


'10 Ford F-450, 6.4, 4.30, 4x4, 14,500 GVWR, '06 Host Rainer 950 Dbl Slide, Torklift Talon tiedowns, Glow Steps, and Fastguns. Bilstein 4600s, Firestone Air Bags, Toyo M655 225/19.5 Gs, Curt front hitch, Energy Suspension bump stops.


Skibane

San Antonio, TX

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Posted: 08/21/21 05:51pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My favorite piece of advice to prospective first-time RVers: AVOID THE URGE TO BUY MORE RV THAN YOU REALLY NEED.

Many house-dwellers have trouble visualizing how they could possibly adjust to the much smaller confines of an RV - and thus tend to buy the biggest RV they can afford (or their tow vehicle can handle).

The reality is that RVs tend to feel much roomier after you've spent some time using them - and a small RV is SO much easier to tow, maneuver into campsites, store and maintain.

"Going Large" limits your prospects for enjoying your RV: As a rough rule-of-thumb, every 5 foot increase in RV length halves the number of campsites it will fit in.

Some of the nicest campsites are also some of the smallest - And many RVs won't fit in them.

You don't want to be in that category.

THINK SMALL.

tomman58

Southeast Michigan

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Posted: 08/21/21 06:07pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Skibane wrote:

My favorite piece of advice to prospective first-time RVers: AVOID THE URGE TO BUY MORE RV THAN YOU REALLY NEED.

Many house-dwellers have trouble visualizing how they could possibly adjust to the much smaller confines of an RV - and thus tend to buy the biggest RV they can afford (or their tow vehicle can handle).

The reality is that RVs tend to feel much roomier after you've spent some time using them - and a small RV is SO much easier to tow, maneuver into campsites, store and maintain.

"Going Large" limits your prospects for enjoying your RV: As a rough rule-of-thumb, every 5 foot increase in RV length halves the number of campsites it will fit in.

Some of the nicest campsites are also some of the smallest - And many RVs won't fit in them.

You don't want to be in that category.

THINK SMALL.


I can disagree with much of this. Do go to the dealership, do spend at least an hour or two ion the TT you are thinking of. DO NOT go small or large go for what you think you need. The 5 foot rule is trash if you go on line and research where you wish to camp. We have camped for 30 years. I always check out the RV sties , I always call and chat with them , tell them about my rig and needs. The bottom line here is to research your needs, the more you know and the more questions you ask the less pain full a trip can be. We travel across the USA every year, we have our favorite sites and deviate yearly requiring more research. The fun of having an RV is going to places you have never been. By the time each year when we leave home I have reservations across the US and after many years there have been a minimum of surprises.


2015 GMC D/A, CC 4x4/ Z71 ,3.73,IBC SLT+
2018 Jayco 338RETS
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It must be time to go, the suns out and I've got a full tank of diesel!
We have a granite fireplace hearth! Love to be a little different.

toedtoes

California

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Posted: 08/21/21 06:58pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

For me size matters if you want to stay in specific campgrounds. If you want to go to X area and stay at B campground, then size can be a big factor. If you want to go to X area and are happy staying at B, D, F, G, and L campgrounds then size is not a big factor.

Also, you have to decide what your usage will be:

100 percent sightseeing/road trip
100 percent traditional camping
or some combination of them.

Choose for what you'll use it for the most and make due for the other. What makes a great camping rig won't necessarily be a great road trip rig.

Gdetrailer

PA

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Posted: 08/22/21 01:35pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

toedtoes wrote:

For me size matters if you want to stay in specific campgrounds. If you want to go to X area and stay at B campground, then size can be a big factor. If you want to go to X area and are happy staying at B, D, F, G, and L campgrounds then size is not a big factor.

Also, you have to decide what your usage will be:

100 percent sightseeing/road trip
100 percent traditional camping
or some combination of them.

Choose for what you'll use it for the most and make due for the other. What makes a great camping rig won't necessarily be a great road trip rig.


Kind of making things very confusing.

You can 100% sight see/roadtrip in anything.

You can 100% traditional camp in anything.

From a car bench seat to a tent, to a motorcyclist with a backpack and bedroll, to a 45ft diesel pusher and beyond, all types of camping can be accomplish in one way or another in pretty much any form of transportation.

The only caveat would be some rigs may be too large to fit in some camping spots in some campgrounds. So what, move on to another campground that has spots large enough.

But, I am not really getting the vibe that the OP is talking about a 40+ ft length RV.

Not sure why folks make up these pretend rules and exclusionisms..

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