Best Anerican RV?

Discussion in 'Full Timers' started by Greg Ledder, Oct 22, 2008.

  1. Greg Ledder

    Greg Ledder Read Only Funster

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    Hello all!

    No doubt this question will have been asked somewhere along the line but which American RV would you consider to be the best all rounder as a Full timing vehicle?
    I know that personal taste will dictate the answers to a large degree but it would be very interesting to see whether a pattern developes with a trend toward a certain RV - or not.
    There seems to be a lot of different models out there so it is a bit of a minefield but your experiences of the various RV's would make for very interesting reading!

    Cheers,

    Greg & Ann.:Smile:
     
  2. MicknPat

    MicknPat Funster

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    Greg & Ann, :welcome:

    My advice would be to buy the largest RV that is lawful and that you will be comfortable driving.

    Once you live full-time in a vehicle you will be surprised just how quickly a small space shrinks.

    Now we are currently over in the USA is a Fleetwood Discovery 39S 'A' Class diesel pusher 39 ft long that has three slide-outs. :thumb:

    Visitors to our RV have commented on the amount of space the slide-out give.

    We travelled to Florida on 16th Oct and bought our Discovery a few weeks later off a British friend who has previously bought several.

    Just for the record we can BOTH honestly say that, 'Today in our RV feels just like the first day we bought it'.

    We hope we have nearly another 12 months before we have to ship her back to the UK. :helptitanic: :Rofl1::Rofl1:

    More information..........Just ask or visit our blog :active: at

    Thiswilldous - GetJealous.com Travel Blogs
     
  3. Greg Ledder

    Greg Ledder Read Only Funster

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    Hi Mick & Pat and thanks for the warm welcome!

    I can understand what you say about the size of RV - depending on the design it could soon begin to feel claustrophobic after our present home but we would gladly sacrifice space for freedom any day! We have been looking (only on the 'net at the mo) at RV's with slide-outs and they do seem to be the best option by far for permenant living.

    What about reliablility of the American RV's - is there a particular model that may be very reliable or models that aren't very reliable? They are obviously built for long distance cruising so I would expect them to be up to the job.
    I doubt that we will be able to buy a new RV unless we win the lottery but I know you can pick up low mileage examples at very good prices so we'll see what happens when the time comes......

    Thanks for the info and we will definately visit your blog!

    Greg & Ann.
     
  4. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    Hi Greg and Ann

    We've been fulltiming for over two years but to answer your question you need to tell us what kind of fulltimhg lifestyle you envisage, it's a bit like asking what's the best car to buy without knowing how it will be used ..

    Do you plan to do a lot of touring or stay in only a few locations each year and when you travel do you want to explore the out of the way places ? I'm afraid there is no one size fits all. As a rule of thumb the larger the vehicle the fewer sites you can visit and the more costly it is to run.

    Our RV is a 36 ft Georgieboy Cruisemaster, rear engined Cummins diesel on a Spartan chassis, no slides, does around 14 mpg.

    We have toured extensively in France, Spain, Portugal, Morocco and Germany, it is NOT ideal, many times I wish it would shrink to the size of a panel van but it has not hindered us, it just takes good planning with good intelligence before moving on and visiting a new location.. it is the width and or height, not length that causes access problems.

    My ideal fulltiming RV would be German built, on a purpose built chassis ( not a truck conversion) mid engined diesel, one or two slides with a garage for Smart car , size ~ 30ft x 7ft 6in wide max.

    ohh yes and do 30 mpg :Rofl1::Rofl1:

    Last bit of advice, take your time choosing, look at plenty and talk first hand to people who are actually fulltiming, not dreaming..

    Good luck with your search ..

    Jim
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2008
  5. moandick

    moandick Read Only Funster

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    And as some one who has full-timed for five years or so, my advice would definitely be NOT to buy new!

    My 2nd RV is now about 4 years old and has probably lost something like ½ it's value in depreciation and vat etc., etc., etc. :Eeek::Eeek::Eeek:

    Let someone else take the loss in vat - you go for something around two years old with 15,000 miles on the clock. Don't expect to find it because most RVs only do about 4 or 5000 miles a year. :Eek!::Eek!:

    At that age and mileage all of the snags will have been found and you know that the engine has been used (rather than standing still in Spain for six months at a time) and will be just about loosened up to give you the best mpg that you can get. :thumb:

    If you intend standing still for long periods at a time then buy as big as you can BUT as cheap as possible, so that it won't hurt as you watch it rust away in our damp climate! :shout:
     
  6. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    goodmorning. as you will know i run a 5er. 20ft lynton trailer garage in back for 2 monkey bikes. height 3mtr width 7ft6in.total length30ft . dont need a car as unit now is 7seater canterdouble cab. 8.25ton train wgt. easy todrive bends on tight corners . but you have to like trucks i think. sorry no pics of canter must do some.jims not too far out on what he has, if you go too.small its not good.
     
  7. Mark&Sue

    Mark&Sue Deleted User

    Hi Greg,

    Sue and I have just bought a 34ft Damon Daybreak, its 12 years old and in need of much work but it will be our home for the next few years. We looked at many others and found out what we wanted as we went along. We were restricted by budget and paid 12.5k for ours. We are having new carpets fitted as I write this and we are visiting the Motorhome Medics in Cheltenham next week to get some of the other problems sorted out. I suspect that you will find out what you really like while you are looking around at the various RVs within your budget and with the advice already given you should make a good choice. The one thing that I would say to you that is vital, make sure that you leave enough of your budget spare to make adjustments and purchase the extra's to make everything the way that "You" want it.
    Our budget was 20k, we paid 12.5 for the RV, then we had to get new carpets, full service, new alternator, replacement sink drain, new water pump, 10ft box trailer, flat screen TV, replacement dining table, ATV ramp for our bike, £250 worth of fuel, new engine bay battery, new load restraining hooks in the trailer, new steering wheel cover, various cables, TV antenna Booster, whistling kettle, tools, first aid kit, storage containers etc, etc, etc...
    Just a few of the things we have paid out for since picking her up. We WILL use our budget and a little more besides.
    There are so many things to do and plan for that it makes me dizzy.
    I will say one other thing that will justify what we are doing, "I'm having the time of my life, the stress is gone, I'm having so much fun and we have only had the RV for 2 weeks". Check the blogs mate and make sure you view all the RVs that you like the look of. Good luck!!! :thumb:
     
  8. Geo

    Geo Trader - Funster

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    And may I say what an excellent choice you have made Mark
    Biased who me:Eeek:
    Geo
    In my opinion the best RV on the road is the one your sat in:thumb:
     
  9. Mark&Sue

    Mark&Sue Deleted User

    Best RV

    Hi Geo,

    I think that although it is 12 years old, you might just be right there mate! :thumb:
     
  10. moandick

    moandick Read Only Funster

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    Thoroughly agree, Geo but I also add that "The RV that I really, really want - is the next one that I look at!)
     
  11. olley

    olley Funster

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    Hi some people could live in a tent others need a palace, some fulltime in a PVC others need a 38' RV. Some park up and don't move for a month or two, others the wheels hardly stop moving before they are of again. And all these differences effect whats the best RV for you.

    Speaking personally if I could choose again I would go for the 32' Brave that Martin and Jane are selling, simply because thats about the smallest size that has a W/M, for me keeping the length down is more important than extra living space.

    Olley
     
  12. Greg Ledder

    Greg Ledder Read Only Funster

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    Thanks ever so much one and all for the brilliant advice - you have certainly given us plenty to think about!

    We will probably have a budget of between £20-30K to buy the RV depending on how much we get for our converted trawler / Houseboat in maybe 4 years time.

    From scouring the 'net we should be able to pick up something decent for this amount then I want to make the RV as independent/self sufficient as possible using solar panels / batteries/inverter etc etc (I have seen RV's advertised that are already converted this way) and as we would like to travel quite a lot rather than stay in one place if possible (even if it's only throughout our green and pleasant land), an LPG coversion would also be on the wish list - unless we went for a diesel pusher.

    Sounds as though the 'Damon's' are quite a popular choice...............

    We will have to go and have a good look at some RV's 'in the flesh' in the near future!:Smile:
     
  13. Jan Pendreigh

    Jan Pendreigh Read Only Funster

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    For us the Damon Daybreak ticked all our boxes. My main wish was a completely contained bathroom with a tub and so many we looked at just didn't have this. We've had her since June 07 (bought her 3 yrs old) we've done some modifications (taken out a settee behind the passenger seat and replaced with a swivel leather armchair so now the passenger seat swivels completely and makes a very sizeable sitting area; taken out the awful venetian blinds and hung curtains (why don't the Americans hang curtains?) and we've got a coffee table in the middle.

    We just love her, looked at others but the layout, for us, just isn't right.

    12mpg towing a car on a trailer.

    Jan
     
  14. derek h

    derek h Read Only Funster

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    The DW has developed a thing about 5er's. I know it's because we would not need a toad. She can be very clever, financially. You'll notice I never said, tight.
    As you can imagine it's not easy trying to source a good 5er (semi, artic, 5er ? ?) If, and when we start looking, do you suggest looking over here or in the US. I would not need a lot of convincing if you suggest somewhere like California, or Texas, Georgia or at a push, Florida. I understand we would have to be careful about size, 7ft6in width and whatever the length restrictions are.
    Winters in somewhere warmer than Northampton, and summers somewhere prettier than Northampton are the plan. I don't have anything against Northampton, but .............
    Any thoughts ?
    No hurry, 4years 6 months 2 weeks to do yet. Or a lottery win:thumb:
    Derek
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2008
  15. PeteH

    PeteH Funster

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    % Ers v/s R-Vs Etc!!

    Hi

    Just a thought with 5`rs don`t lose sight of the fact that you cannot tow more than the vehicle weighs. This will be your limiting factor (eg; if you have a 3tonne Tow vehicle your trailer unit must not weight more and preferably a substantial amount less) the CC 80% rule is a good guide.

    If your 5`er is heavy with loads of slides etc, you will probably finish up with a Large Dual wheel US "crewcab" pickup truck, absolutely beautifull beasties, BUT will cost to run Solo!! (even of diesel or LPG conversion) a bit overkill for "shopping"?

    Pete
     
  16. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    Hi Pete

    As I understand it , 5ers are not classed as trailers but as semi-trailers, same as an articulated truck, so the trailer weight ratio rule doesn't apply.. no doubt other rules apply like the Gross vehicle train weight of the truck.
     
  17. Bulletguy

    Bulletguy Read Only Funster

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    Looking at ads in various magazines i notice RV's, particularly secondhand, come in at pretty amazingly low prices by comparison to european build m/h's.

    Fuel consumption must play a part in this with some of the bigger RV's returning as low as single figures mpg? Or is it the weight factor licence restrictions on those reaching 70yrs old?
     
  18. olley

    olley Funster

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    Hi BG as long as you can pass a yearly medical their are no licence restrictions on over 70's.

    Jim right about it being classed as a semi-trailer, which brings up another anomaly, according to the C&U ALL semi-trailers must be plated and that includes the unit.

    Wouldn't it be nice if someone in government sat down and went through all the anomalies that effect RV's and put them right.

    Olley
     
  19. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    I would say it's a combination of factors.

    The size, problems with: parking, small roads, storage, camp sites.

    Higher costs: insurance, maintenance, spares, fuel, storage.

    RVs are not for everyone, if you enjoy touring and exploring there are limitations, but if you live for extended periods or just plain love them, nothing else compares.

    That said, our diesel RV averages 14 mpg, much more when abroad on decent roads and lower traffic volumes.. insurance is around £400 and we have explored many areas of France, Spain, Germany, Portugal and Morocco .. our recent purchase of a tow car will enable us to explore and visit places we couldn't do with the RV.

    There is absolutely no doubt you get far more for you pound with a yank..

    but in the end it's horses for courses.. :Cool:
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2008
  20. Bulletguy

    Bulletguy Read Only Funster

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    Thats what i meant....maybe i should have used 'limitation' instead of 'restriction'!
     

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