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J&C getting ready

Again New or Used Gas Coach

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About 20 years ago my wife and I started dating and she is always wanted us to get a motorhome, I am a retires Vet (2007) and receive disibility.  I'm 51 now and we have a good business going in a town I don't enjoy so more then a few years of living here I really started looking into places we could go to do family trips or vacation in an RV.  That being said I fell inlove with the lifestyle of full timing in a class A motor home.  I have looked at YouTube videos 6 hours a day for a couple months, read books and blogs so I'm somewhat in a good position to get an understanding of what is talked about here now.  Our daughter is a freshman in high school and should skip a year to start college sooner.  The state we live in let's students that have an A/B average go to college for free there first 2 years so a month ago I decided we would hit the road 1 June 2023.  That Will be the time our daughter transfers to an out of state college to finish her schooling and get her degree.

 

That is a bit of background about me.  Now here is my question.  I am 100% we are going to get a class A rig, I hear the pros and cons about  gas and diesel rigs and I see the difference between them as we visit dealerships and I also see the difference in price.  I do understand you get what you pay for but I have looked at all the numbers of fulltime living on the road since that is what we want to do.  That being said I want to put 15% down and last month we have set up a savings account for emergency money for repairs and such, we also started buying the items that we have seen as common things full time people say they use, need or make life better on the road so we do have a plan.  My thing is at this point I found what I feel is a nice rig gas for us that with the 15% down would be less then we currently spend on entertainment (beer for me, movies, eating out and other stupid things we do because we are bored).  So with us stopping our business and living on my pention we would have what the numbers are showing me a very comfortable amount of money to do this since we don't have any bills that would come on the road with us except cell phones and property taxes for our land that we will keep.  So if I get a new gas class A with what I see is as a great monthly payment is it a bad decision because I will want to change to a DP down the road.  Most things in life I don't look for the biggest, or what other people have I go into almost everything practical and look at the big picture.  With this I'm still not sure because I see so many people changing rigs every so many years (I have a perfect 2003 explorer that I'm about to give to our daugher and never wanted another vehicle since buying and a 1998 motorcycle that I have never wanted to replace with a newer fancy bike).  Right now I see a new gas class A platform that I like, the payment is low enough to be comfort ble and I don't plan on wanting to get another in less then 9 1/2 years and that is only because I hear of age restrictions at some locations.  Just this last month I have been reading of the new  7.3 chassis so I'm even willing to wait a year for it to be in the type of rig I think I want.

 

Sorry it is so long there is so much going on in my head.  I understand about the depreciation and fit and finish with a new vs new and don't really care about the depreciation (not that we have money to just toss away).  I do care about the fact that we really want to do this and plan to do it for a min of 20 year's because we really want to embrace the life and the beauty of the country, with that being said I would like to only buy a rig every 9 1/2 years if it is true we will be restricted to an age limit at some places.  So if we can handle the price of new and regardless how much my lovely wife wishes we had the super DP beside us or at a show for a life that would fit our budget and give us the money to do the things we want while on the road I feel a new gas rig with the newly coming 7.3 platform is a good choice.

I have looked at every post on this site before posting this so I know there are so many people that know here and I welcome your input.  I almost knew exactly what I was going to do rig wise until  this new chassis was talked about, I was going to go new it was going to be gas, it had to have washer/dryer (wife) and we just about made the move to get one really soon leaving for full time 1 June 2023.  Now I started to rethink the type of rig since I started thinking I wanted the new 7.3 instead of the V10 because we don't want the first ones out on the rig we want is what I'm thinking.

 

What do you think?

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I would be looking at the weights. You want a washer and dryer and to tow a car. Does the gas rig you are considering have enough weight capacity to do that plus leave you enough capacity for your gear and still be able to get you over a mountain? How slow are you willing to drive over that mountain?

Linda

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I'm trying to focus on weight.  I've asked my wife if we could get rid of everything and greatly downsize our cloths so going into the RV we are hopefully going in with just cloths and the equipment for the rig.

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The one I want is not something I see anyone talking about, from what I see it should be ok for life on the road.  The new engine is supposed to be lighter and the new transmission is only a few pounds more with the 10 gears from what I was reading.

Edited by J&C getting ready

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All the one I want is the Winnebago Adventurer 35F.  I do understand the weight and use of the washer and dryer I just also know I can't change that with my wife.  Even been talking to her about all the people we could meet while washing cloths together.  I will not win that battle and to date it has been the only thing we did not agree upon.  She is actually more excited to get on the road then I am so that is the easy part, letting go of the fear of something new.

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As for speed, we are in no hurry to get anywhere once we are on the road.  I've been ordering the solar panels and next I will upgrade the 4 batteries and the rest of the system.  When we pull out our plan is to stop and take things in take our time and enjoy life so the speed of travel is not a concern considering we plan to do this for 20 years and really want to take each state in prior to us stopping.

 

I could be completely wrong that is just how we are going into this.

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Welcome to the Escapee forums! We are here to help so feel free to join in on any thread or to start new ones at any time and on most any RV subject.

As you consider the advice given here, never forget that each one of us tends to believe that what we did was the best for everyone if it has worked out well for us. There are no totally unbiased opinions, no matter how honest we may be or how hard we may try. There is no question that two motorhomes of the same quality but one on a gas chassis and the other on a diesel chassis will have some advantages to the diesel. The greatest advantages are the longevity of diesel engines, their fuel mileage, and the air ride is clearly the best ride of any for a motorhome. The gas chassis has a clear advantage in price to purchase and in maintenance costs. While most people are reluctant to agree, there is some small part of most of us that want to have what others have. I think that the best answer that I can give to you is to share what we did, the reasons why, and the result. 

We began preparing to go fulltime by shopping for a new motorhome because I didn't want the risk involved in buying used and Pam wanted a new home for our big adventure. We had every intention to buy a diesel but the realities of cost brought us to the realization that we would have to spend all of the proceeds from the sale of our house if we were to buy a new diesel coach, while a gas coach could be purchased new for less than half of that money, leaving the remainder for our exit plan when the day came to leave the road. We bought a Cruisemaster (by Georgie Boy who is no longer in business), that was pretty equivalent to the Adventurer you are considering. We owned that coach for 14 years and lived in it continuously for nearly 12 years. When Pam's medical needs forced us to leave the fulltime lifestyle we used the remainder of our house fund to buy our present home and we sold the coach and downsized to a small travel trailer. 

As much as I might like to have had a diesel like the majority of posters here promote, we went to the same places and saw the same things with our gas chassis as any of them go. We may have sometimes gone up mountains somewhat slower than they did, we didn't buy an RV to race with and we never failed to get there after only slightly more time. Modern gas motorhomes typically hold pretty close to the climbing speeds of the diesels and unless being first is really important I consider that a very poor reason to spend what one would cost. If we had to do it all over today with all other factors the same, we would do the same thing and the leading candidate for us would be either the Winnebago Adventurer or the Tiffin Allegro. 

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Thank you both for your comments.  My wife wants that Tiffin for me I want to do a good amount of dry camping or boondockimg when we hit the west coast because we both love to fly kites and it would give us the open space to do it.  After looking really hard at the basements of each the adventurer gave us the ability to carry 6 lithium batteries without doing any modifications or loosing space and I think that is what sold me to be honest.

 

It is wonderful to hear someone has done this in the type of rig I think is our choice.  I want to go in cabinets empty and pick things up along the way starting out with what we must have and we will grow into it so what you said encourages me even more.  Am I correct that some places will not allow us to stay if our home is older then 10 years?

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52 minutes ago, J&C getting ready said:

Am I correct that some places will not allow us to stay if our home is older then 10 years?

Yes, but. Those few places are mostly high end resorts you probably don't want to go to anyway. As long as you keep your rig clean and maintained you will be welcomed everywhere else. You can even, sometimes, get into the restrictive parks if you let them see your rig, in person or by pictures, before you move in. Old does not mean shabby.

It sounds like the rig you have picked out might work well for you as your attitude is spot on.

As anyone who had read many of my comments knows, my pet peeve is a TV mounted where you can't see it straight on from your seating. In the 35F you'd both have to somehow sit in the corner of the couch to see the one in the main room without getting a crick in your neck unless it is mounted on a swivel. But, if you normally do your TV watching while in bed or you really don't watch TV that is of no concern.

We had a Winnebago 35' Journey and found it to be the perfect length--enough room inside while being easy to park. I do envy having two bathrooms, though.

Linda

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I was concerned about that at first because I've see that be a problem for people that live the life.  During our last visit to take measurements of the basement compartments we found out that the Tv's do have swivel mounts and that was a present surprise.

Edited by J&C getting ready
Typo

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Currently I live in front of the TV in life from fall until spring so TV is important to me.  I think that is going to change alot once we hit the road, but if not I do want to be comfortable.

 

Thank you for your input

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4 hours ago, J&C getting ready said:

Am I correct that some places will not allow us to stay if our home is older then 10 years?

There are many of the longer terms, snowbird type parks that have a rule of that sort, usually applied only when the RV looks bad or trashy, and more often than not they simply want to look at it before they let you stay if spending an extended time in the park. Rarely do parks have the 10-year-old rule for overnight stops and most do not for 1week or less, but many do so for monthly rentals. I can't remember the last time that I saw it for a single night stop.

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FWIW, most gas-powered motorhomes have a 5,000# hitch, that  limits which vehicle you choose to tow; I have no idea about the new Ford 7.3 with 10 speed tranny. For MH's with 19.5" tires the available selection is somewhat limited, I would choose 22.5" tires on the MH if possible.

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I think I have the answers to age at stays.  Now I have to find out about the new engines and transmission.  We are going to head to a Ford dealer today and see if a mechanic can give us any info since they have started putting the engine in some of the trucks from what I was told from some buddies at church.

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3 hours ago, J&C getting ready said:

Now I have to find out about the new engines and transmission.  We are going to head to a Ford dealer today and see if a mechanic can give us any info

If you don't mind, would you start a thread about the new engine if you learn anything, either here or perhaps on the general forum?

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As with people of my age group remember back year ago about the big write up about the new Ford 6.0 liter diesel that Ford put out. Well as time passed on I think we all know how that one worked out. So with that being said I think I would give Ford a couple years to get al the bugs worked out to see if this new V-8 & tranny are going to live up to the expectations.

  1. As far either purchasing a gas or diesel, that is a decision that everyone must make for themselves.  Quality & workmanship of any RV are the most 2 important quality items. As far as price concerning a gas over diesel is concerned, I personally would not even consider a diesel rig.
  2. The cost of the diesel RV, plus the cost of maintaining the rig.
  3. As far as the size of tire goes, I'm thinking that most of the newer gas rig are now coming out with 22'5 tires. (Which is another higher cost factor).
  4. And as you asked about the10 year rule concerning older RV's of any type. I personally have only been asked that question once. (The majority of these are Resorts)

 

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The biggest concern with any rig outside of the obvious ones (cost, quality, etc.) is cargo carrying capacity and gross combined vehicle weight rating (for loading and towing).  Individual axle capacities are also a concern.  You are talking about adding solar and batteries and related equipment for boondocking.  All of that equipment will cut into both of those ratings right off the top.  You mentioned lithium batteries, so that will help some with weight.  A generator is usually another piece of a well rounded boondocking set up, which is more weight.  Any good boondocking rig also needs to have generous water carrying capacity which is another thing to cut into the above ratings.  The washer and drier will also cut into the capacities.  For example, my solar set up with batteries and all related equipment is approximately 1000 lbs of dead weight in my rig.  That is approximately 1000 lbs less carrying capacity for all my other stuff.  My system is pretty large though and I have AGM batteries instead of lithium.

As long as the gas rig has sufficient capacities with all the above factored in to still allow you to carry your personal stuff and tow whatever towed vehicle you end up with, then it will be fine.  Also, do not go by the carrying capacities listed from the manufacturer (other than the GVWR and GCVWR).  Many manufacturers take an average rig and weigh it and then create their carrying capacity numbers from that.  The only true way to get actual capacities is to take the rig you are interested in from the dealer and run it across a scale to get its actual weight and then subtract that from the gross weight ratings to get the real capacities.  You want to leave a bit of a safety factor in those numbers as well.  It isn’t great for a rig to travel at its maximum capacity all the time.  You would surprised at just how close some gas rigs are to their gross weight ratings right from the factory.  Ideally a four corner weight rather than just axle weights that you get from a truck stop scale would be even better, but isn’t exactly practical to get on a rest drive.  Driving across a scale at a truck stop is fairly easy to do on a test drive in most areas though.

i’m not trying to discourage you from a gas rig, just trying to make sure you make an educated decision.  So many full timers use diesel rigs because they typically have more capacities than comparable gas rigs.

Even Kirk, who had a great experience with his gas rig, has talked about how he had to make adjustments to the way he loaded his rig to keep it within all of its ratings (specifically axle weight capacities).

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Thank you.  I will take the one I think we are going to get across some scales next week after spring break.  I have a constant worry about weight as I talk to my wife and never considered the 8 solar panels we will be adding.  Good thing is they are in so we can find out their weight next week also along with the wires.  I never thought about that so it will be a priority next week for sure.  TY

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10 hours ago, Chad Heiser said:

Even Kirk, who had a great experience with his gas rig, has talked about how he had to make adjustments to the way he loaded his rig to keep it within all of its ratings (specifically axle weight capacities).

That isn't unique to gas chassis coaches. It is true that there are diesel coaches that have a GVWR that is almost unlimited but that is not true for those at the more modest end of the price scale. If you talk with the folks at Smart Weigh, you will learn that unbalanced loading is a very common problem to RVs of all types and fuel types. And they can and often are overloaded as well. While the diesel pushers do have a higher GVWR than do gas powered coaches, they also have a far higher empty weight and many have no more or even less available cargo weight capacity than the higher GVWR gas coaches. Even Chad should acknowledge the facts.

Edited by Kirk W

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2 hours ago, Kirk W said:

That isn't unique to gas chassis coaches. It is true that there are diesel coaches that have a GVWR that is almost unlimited but that is not true for those at the more modest end of the price scale. If you talk with the folks at Smart Weigh, you will learn that unbalanced loading is a very common problem to RVs of all types and fuel types. And they can and often are overloaded as well. While the diesel pushers do have a higher GVWR than do gas powered coaches, they also have a far higher empty weight and many have no more or even less available cargo weight capacity than the higher GVWR gas coaches. Even Chad should acknowledge the facts.

I didn’t intend to imply this was not an issue with DP’s, it is an issue with all RV types.  When comparing gas class A’s with DP’s specifically though, the gas versions tend to have less available capacity as a whole than DP’s.  This shouldn’t stop people from buying gas class A’s, it just needs to be considered to make sure the unit purchased will work for the buyer and everything they intend to take with them.

I own a fairly high end 5er that has decent carrying capacity, but I am still pushing up against its capacities when I travel because of all the extra stuff I added (specifically all of my solar, batteries, inverters, etc).  If I had not added all that additional weight I wouldn’t be anywhere near my capacities, but because I did I am pushing the limits of my rig at times.  I knew this going into the purchase of my rig and had many conversations with the manufacturer about it.  I was able to get some concessions from the manufacturer that helped the overall ratings of my rig (a long story).  It is important to be aware of weights and capacities for any rig you intend to buy.

Edited by Chad Heiser

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The information that was given to me is purely from the service department at the Ford place I went to.  They believe that the new power plant will be moving into the class A in the future.  Based on their training they are in the trucks now and the chassis will be used for commercial trucks and vans like food trucks and delivery trucks In 2021 or 2022.  That takes away my concern of getting a class A now and seeing the new chassis on the road before we become full time.  So we are not going to wait.

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As for me getting a gas coach, that is sent in stone.  My wife can't get me to budge so that means know one else can.  Every dealer we see tries to up sell me for a DP and it is funny because my wife is the one that wants one not me.  They look at me and think he will do it because he is a man and he will want more of everything and I want this life because I want less of things and more life and experiences.  

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So how many class A rvs have you owned and driven/ lived in? So far I see 0. Yet you know more about the subject than people who have been rving for years. I would take some more time looking. I know you are hot to buy that Winnebago but it might not be the best choice for full timing. Have you looked at Newmar? 

I am just curious why you don't want a diesel? You do know buying a RV is not the same as a car. Do you know you could be in a slightly used Quality diesel for about 1/2 of the price of the winnebago? That would give you at least an extra  $80,000 to do maintenance or custom upgrades. Just something to think about. $80,000 extra in your pocket or for trip expenses  and life experiences.

Tell me what you think.

Bill

 

Edited by WILDEBILL308

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