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Newmar Fifth wheel duallys


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#1 Haul'n jet engines

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Posted 29 March 2012 - 10:08 PM

Has anyone pulled a Newmar fifth wheel with the dual tires on each axle? Not something I've normally seen on the Fivers.

#2 Mark & Dale Bruss

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Posted 30 March 2012 - 04:29 AM

Sibernut has a Newmar Dually

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#3 SIBERNUT

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Posted 30 March 2012 - 05:04 AM

......and I love it! But Newmar was the only one doing it, & they are stopping fiver production. If you are looking, IMHO the quality began to decline around '03. I can see differences from mine, most notably the 16" frame was gone around '05 & they began calling what was a "Mountain Aire" (14" frame) a "Kountry Aire".

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#4 DJW

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Posted 30 March 2012 - 06:17 AM

We had a 04 Kountry Aire with the dullies and loved it. We had a triple axle 95 Kountry Aire prior to getting the new one in 04. The 04 was much easier to back up and jack into tight spaces. I agree with sibernut the quality starting going south in 06. Newmar had brought in a new team from Fleetwood to manage the company in 05 and it all starting going south with the 06's which had a huge drop in quality. We sold our rig in 2011 thinking we were done rving but we just bought a 1996 Newmar Mt Aire 40' DP with 82,000 miles on it without any hesitations because the quality with Newmar was at it's zenith in the mid to late 90's. The only downside to the dullies is when you buy tires your are buying 8 not 6.

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#5 marvmarcy

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Posted 30 March 2012 - 06:54 AM

We bought our 03 Mtn Aire in 05. With our full-time gear aboard, it weighed right at 20,000#, so required an mdt. Our F550 didn't feel right with it and had drive train problems because of pulling that weight in the Rocky Mtns, so we got a class 7 hdt (in sig below). The fiver held up beautifully, but sadly was hit by a Silver Eagle bus on Nov 7, 2011 and written off for insurance purposes. Our new rig (also in sig below) is far from the build quality of the Newmar. The frame of our Mtn Aire was sprung in the rear end collision. The axles were not parallel and the pin box was bent down at the front. The impact destroyed a massive ET hitch, so the fiver "took a lickin". It sold at auction for $14K and was towed to FL by a F350 dually. The new owner didn't even notice the bent frame, but said it towed beautifully from St Louis. They are widely recognized as high end units, so have held their value. We paid $66K in May 2005, and it appraised in Nov 2011 at over $50K. Not bad for 6 1/2 years of full-time use. They came with a wide range of options, including full body paint, 6.5KW generators, etc. We looked at a basic 2001 Mtn Aire in CO Spgs in 2007 for an out-of-state buyer, and it was in good condition for only $25K. So there are/were some good buys out there. I put Michelin XPS all steel radials on it in 2008 ($1,800 for nine tires) and they were holding up very well (kept inflated to max pressure - 80psi). There was plenty of safety margin in the axles and tires (actual axle load 16,500; axle rating 18,000, tire rating 19,800).
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#6 SIBERNUT

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Posted 30 March 2012 - 07:27 AM

When you buy a heavy fiver, you're lookin' at duallys or 3 axles. Here in the east, that 3rd axle will cost you the price of those extra 2 tires in short order. Besides, have you ever tried to single out a non-dually axle to limp home?

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#7 Wlee

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Posted 30 March 2012 - 09:23 PM

We have a 03 Mountain Aire 39 SDTS with the dual tandems. It pulls like a dream.We go to New Jersey 2-3 times a year to see our daughter and son in law and toll gets very expensive. there is one bridge i think a third axle on the trailer would cost 20-30 bucks more.I've seen tri axle trailers pop the bead on the rear tire on very sharp turn-a-rounds.I'm sure there is better trailers out there i'll keep my New Mar. We are starting to up date it. Samsung frig, Panasonic 42" plasma, rebuilding some of the cabinets. Wood flooring next. Sometime down the road a full body paint.
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#8 Mark & Dale Bruss

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Posted 30 March 2012 - 10:37 PM

There are positives to tandem duals.

One of the negatives is two less brake assemblies compared to a triple single axles.

Another negative is a narrower frame which makes installation of auto leveling system harder to get the jacks near the outside of the body.

As for tolls, some states, Illinois, New York for example, charge by pairs of tires instead of axles.

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#9 DJW

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Posted 31 March 2012 - 08:03 AM

Dale

I hear what you are saying but I always found the 4 Hyd/Disc breaks on the 04 dully much more effective than the 6 magnetic breaks on the 95 triple axle. We had the factory installed Hyd leveling on the 04 and I would agree that if the frame had been a little wider they could have moved the jacks to the outside more and it would have been a little more stable but other than that the Hyd leveling sure beat the boards under the tires on the triple axle.

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#10 Scrap

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Posted 31 March 2012 - 09:04 AM

Mine mtn aire tows like a rock too. Been pretty happy with it. You could debate forever on whether four big brakes outdrag six small ones. I don't know the answer either. But my biggest beef with mine is how they put the RH side slide lock on the back end of the slide. I mean you have this trailer that you can get to the bed, crapper, sink, TV, and all the controls and things with the slides closed, but yet to lock the one you have to crawl over two chairs, up on the counter, thru the sink (!) then reach over and try to get the lever overcenter. Way annoying!

#11 Mark & Dale Bruss

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Posted 31 March 2012 - 09:55 AM

A triple can have six hydraulic disk brakes, so it stays four versus six brake assemblies.

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#12 DJW

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Posted 31 March 2012 - 03:34 PM

Dale

Point Taken.

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#13 Dennis M

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Posted 31 March 2012 - 05:30 PM

Our '05 Mountain Aire has duals. Very stable towing, we weigh just about 18k loaded for travel (GVWR is 20k). Have towed it over 60k miles. Replaced springs and shocks at about 50k due to a broken spring eye, otherwise flawless.

I agree on the quality of the Newmar fivers. Through 2005 there was the American Star and the Kountry Star, both two axle single. The Mountain Aire and Kountry Aire both had deeper frame rails and duels. As I was told by a reputable dealer in about 2002, the MA is for people who tow, the KA for people who park it. The KA being a bit heavier for the same size.

Somewhere after 2005 the Mountain Aire went away and the Kountry Aire dropped to the Mountain Aire level, and the American Star was replaced by the X-Aire toyhauler.

I agree with Mark on the narrower frame with the duals, worth the trade off for us. When we put on the Bigfoot they had to mount them inside the frame rails which is less than ideal for stability.

As of April 2012 Newmar will stop building fivers altogether and concentrate on MHs. They only sold 30 fivers in 2011! See below for details. Guess we will be keeping our Mountain Aire for a long time!

DEALER LETTER:

In 2011, Newmar Corporation built 30 units of its fifth wheel brands. Understanding that our company needs new floorplans, new interior designs and new exterior paint graphics to even try to grow this volume, we have been studying the amount of engineering time and resources it would take to freshen the Kountry Star, X-Aire and Kountry Aire brands for the 2013 model year.

It has become very apparent to Newmar management that the entire RV towable market has changed considerably and become more competitive over the past several years. Newmarís management team has also come to the realization that building fifth wheel products on the same production line with its motor home brands, retailing for as much as $800,000.00, is no longer a legitimate means by which to participate in the towable arena.

With all this in mind, Newmar Corporation will cease building its fifth wheel products at the conclusion of the 2012 model year. Should you have any retail customers still in the market for a Newmar fifth wheel, the final production run in which a Newmar fifth wheel could be scheduled for production is April 25, 2012. That unit would ship to your dealership around June 8, 2012.

As with all decisions of this nature, this was a difficult choice. After much analysis, internal discussions and prayer, Newmarís management team feels that this is the best road to follow at this time. Rest assured, Newmar Corporation remains committed to the RV industry and the gas, diesel and luxury motor home markets.

I thank you, in advance for your understanding and support of this decision.

Respectfully,


John Sammut
V.P. of Sales and Marketing
Newmar Corporation
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#14 DJW

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Posted 31 March 2012 - 05:59 PM

I would say that this is the beginning of the end for Newmar. They will not survive on Motor Home sells alone.

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#15 Dennis M

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Posted 31 March 2012 - 08:06 PM

I would say that this is the beginning of the end for Newmar. They will not survive on Motor Home sells alone.

Dennis


I doubt it, did you notice in the letter the comment about $800,000 motor homes? That is where their market has been going the last few years. Their fiver market has been dying for years - they are sure not surviving on 30 a year!

A lot more profit margin in $400 TO $800k motor homes compared to $150k fivers.

When we toured their factory seven years ago they were building five Essex motor homes at $500k a pop for every fiver they built.

As much as those of us with HDTs hate to admit it, the market for big, heavy, high quality fivers is a pretty limited one. How many luxury diesel pushers do you see in campgrounds compared to full time type fivers?
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#16 Wlee

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Posted 31 March 2012 - 08:38 PM

As far as the dually tandems-tri axle goes, look at flat bed goose necks theres a lot more dually tandems than tri axles. One thing about duals is when u hit a moderate size pot hole it will most of the time bridge it for a smoother ride. I'ts kinda like the chev-ford-dodge, or volvo-pete-freightliner ect issue .
Wayne

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#17 Jack Mayer

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Posted 01 April 2012 - 06:18 AM

A triple axle with independent suspension will eat up a pothole easily. That is the value of the independent suspension. The duals have some nice attributes, for sure. But not enough for me to go out of my way to use them. I owned a Newmar 5er and I definitely did not care for the narrow frame rails. THAT caused all kinds of other issues, IMO. From difficulty and compromising on the leveling system, to a grossly smaller underbelly storage area. One advantage (if you can call it that) is the ability to utilize the space between the frame and the outside wall for small storage compartments - which they do to good effect. But on balance I'd rather not have the narrow frame.

As to three axles and the "tire scrubbing issue".... What issue? I have no issues with tire scrubbing. At least that damages or limits tire life. My tires age out before having to be replaced for any other purpose. If you make tight backing turns it is trivial to avoid scrubbing tires or stressing them. Just pull forward a little if you need to. But I rarely need to.

Newmar made a great 5er. Like I said, I owned one, and would own another (if I could find what I liked). But the narrow frame was never, IMO, a good design.

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#18 DJW

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Posted 01 April 2012 - 08:05 AM

Denny

You might be right but I just don't see it. I would guess that more people are upside down on the $400-$800,000 Motor Home than on the $90,000 - $125,000 fifth wheel. I think the cost of fuel is going to drive down the desire for the high end motor homes. High end fifth wheels like the one Jack just had built will always be in demand. I think Newmar just decided not to expend the resources to stay in the game. I agree 30 a year will not keep the production line open but people will pay for quality which Newmar no longer produced.


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#19 Haul'n jet engines

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Posted 01 April 2012 - 06:58 PM

All points are well taken here. I definately see the narrower frame rail spacing as affecting the stability of the rig while parked and on the jack stands. But as one walks around inside the Fiver how much does one feel bouncing or rocking as compared to the wider spaced frame rails of singled tri-axle rigs? Since we do not plan on moving around a lot thus not setting up a lot, the disadvantage when it comes to quickly leveling up the unit may or may not be as much as an issue. Also, with an HDT weighing out at 26,400 lbs, the difference in braking capability between two axles verses three should not affect us greatly. The basement area definately is smaller than the Tetons, New Horizons, and DRVs we considered. But I think we will be ok as we travel lite. LOL We were pleasantly surprised to see how the NADA values for the Newmar Fivers were equal to or above other high end manufacturers comparable units.

Through this nightmare of trying to finance a Fiver we are finally on track with the bank and their requirements for us by finding a less expensive yet well cared for quality Fiver a few years older than what we were originally wanting to purchase. A 2005 will work for us. We chose a Newmar Mountain Aire 38RLPK. Absolutely love the floorplan! Unless the bank has lied to us once again, we plan to close on the deal this week and take delivery. As it has been said on this forum, it all boils down to what works best for the individual and I believe all of the above are top of the line yet unique in their own way. We are very excited!

Edited by Haul'n jet engines, 01 April 2012 - 08:10 PM.


#20 Dennis M

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Posted 01 April 2012 - 07:28 PM

... A 2005 will work for us. We chose a Newmar Mountain Aire 38RLPK. Absolutely love the floorplan! ...


That is a great floor plan, a bit roomier than our 35'. You will be very happy with it.

I have a file with the floor plans, wiring diagrams and plumbing layout for all the 2005 Newmar fivers. Send me an e-mail at xk120ots @ hotmail.com and I will send it to you.
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