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Used Diesel Pusher


xdragr

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We are looking at purchasing a used DP with bunks. We are wanting to know what are the three major QUALITY manufacturers and which models of the three are their entry level coaches, so we know to stay away. We are going to be living in this full time and travelling every 8 to 12 weeks, so the seating needs to be comfortable. Also when we need to take a bathroom break or lunch break we can walk in the coach to get to things without opening slides.

Any insight will be greatly appreciated.

 

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Brands that I would consider are Newmar, Tiffin, Winnebago/Itasca, as prime. Some others that I'd consider would be the Foretravel, Bluebird, and several others but a great deal depends upon how old you are looking at. It also depends to some extent upon what level of luxury you are seeking. If you were to find a well cared for Marathon or Newell that was 20 years old it could be a great choice. Remember that as an RV gets older the condition becomes more and more important. If you are not a diesel mechanic and an RV expert then you should by all means get professional help. I would want one to be checked carefully by a trusted mechanic and also a trusted mobile RV tech.

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We are thinking we don't want to go any older than 2007. Like we said though it is all about being comfortable. We have looked at some and the cushions on the couches and chairs are like a travel trailer. The cushions are much so they can cut down on the weight.

Another question is the more a coach weighs does that mean that they are built with better product?

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re: movement in the coach when slides are closed. This is very important when the coach has opposing slides. Some friends bought a 2014 Fleetwood Excursion with opposing front slides. They can barely squeeze between them to access anything in the coach when slides are closed.

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Another question is the more a coach weighs does that mean that they are built with better product?

Added weight does not necessarily mean the RV is of higher quality, but it is very true that the highest quality materials do weigh more than the lower quality. It says nothing at all about the quality of workmanship or fit & finish of the RV. In addition, it is vital that you compare the actual weight of the RV with the rated GVWR(gross weight rating) in order to know what amount of weight can be safely added to the coach. Remember that water added to the tanks will be 8.3# for every gallon and the waste tank contents will be close to that. Diesel fuel weighs 6.9#/gallon and propane 4.26#/gallon. Most people figure at a minimum 1000# per person living in the RV for their belongings, food, etc.

 

If you don't understand the weight ratings and what they mean, you can start to learn about them from this article.

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After reading your comments we have decided not to go with bunks. I have cross matched bunk models with non bunk models and you are losing space in other parts of the coach. So we have decided to let the kids sleep on the sleeper sofas if have doubles. We have saw tons of coaches without bunks compared to the bunk models. Now the search is on for a manufacturer that makes a comfortable and full time livable coach for our needs.

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We have a 2002 U320 Foretravel that we really like. Well built inside and out lots of HP. It is considered the bottom of the top three. Prevost, Newell then Foretravel. The other models mentioned are popular but the build quality is not the same. There are some bunk models out there but not many. We are not diesel or RV mechanics and have done many repairs and upgrades ourselves with help from the Owners Forum. The engine is a Cummins M11, rated for 1M miles, with and Allison trans. and transmission retarder is hard to beat. The retarder is much better for stoping than the Jake brakes you will find on other class As. The frame/chassis is custom made and the air suspension levels the coach at your camp site. It has no leveling jacks. The engine has access from a large back engine compartment door and from above under the bed. To learn more I would suggest that you visit the Fortravel Owners Web Site. http://www.foreforums.com/ This web site is full of experienced owners that are willing to answer any questions asked. I would also suggest you visit the Tiffin, Monaco, Bluebird, Newmar, Beaver as well as Fleetwood and Winnabego. Join the forums ask question do a lot of reading/research. When we purchased ours I wanted to buy our third coach first. The best comments I received were: establish your budget and buy the best Foretravel you can and a 10 year old Foretravel is better than a new SOB (some other brand). While we were researching our purchase we aften talked to owners of the Manufactures mentioned above as well as others to see what the liked and disliked about their coaches. Many would not repurchase what they owned and many said that they would look very closely at the Foretravel. We found in our budget range that Foretravel, certain years of Newmar, Country Coach, Monaco, Beaver were in our short list. There is no perfection and each brand has good years and not so good years. You must do your research and decide for your self.

 

If you would like to chat regarding our path to a Foretravel through the hundreds of names and models out there you can PM me. Leave your phone # and what times/days are good for you and I will call you back, share what I have found out as well as answer as many question as I can. We can do a conference calls with our better halves as they can shed alot of lite on what works for them and what doesn't. Good Luck. :-D

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  • 3 weeks later...

For full timing, I would go back to older unit from a QUALITY manufacturer. We bought a 1990 Bluebird a year ago. GREAT!

 

Foretravel, Prevost, etc. also. You will be getting MUCH GREATER quality for your money. Over time, that newer one will have many more problems.

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There are several higher end manufacturers that would be ideal for your need. With 4 people you might want to just look at larger coaches (40 foot or above).

 

The old adage was the bigger the coach, the fewer people sleep comfortably. That is why the need for fold out coaches. For example our coach has a long J couch which folds down, but it would be difficult to sleep 2 people full time on a J couch. These J couches can be changed out for a pull out bed, but again at a higher cost. That is why the initial cost to purchase a coach with few problems both present and expected is important.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks everyone for your input. We have looked at a lot of diesel pushers, newmar, foretravel, beaver, Monaco, american dream, and tiffin and we are still not able to decide.

The Beaver woodworking is very upscale but I haven't found anything about what type of roof they have and the insulation r value. The Newmar we looked at had a 1 pc fiberglass roof and was told it had 16 inch on center studs an house insulation with the r value in the walls 11 floors and roof 38. If anyone knows more about these coaches let us know.

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Because owners tend to be defensive of any criticisms of a particular RV, I'll make those via a PM(private message) but I will say publicly that in my experience and observation, the factory support of used units is most often boasted of by Tiffin owners, followed closely by the Newmar gang.

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Thanks everyone for your input. We have looked at a lot of diesel pushers, newmar, foretravel, beaver, Monaco, american dream, and tiffin and we are still not able to decide.

The Beaver woodworking is very upscale but I haven't found anything about what type of roof they have and the insulation r value. The Newmar we looked at had a 1 pc fiberglass roof and was told it had 16 inch on center studs an house insulation with the r value in the walls 11 floors and roof 38. If anyone knows more about these coaches let us know.

 

I have no idea what the insulation value of the roof of my Beaver is but its is fiberglass. In the SMC-era the Beaver Marquis had a one-piece roof and the Patriot and Patriot Thunder models had fiberglass roofs with seams at the front and rear. Ever since we covered the seams with Eternabond tape we have had no problems. I can't speak to the nature of the roof on the other Beaver models or on Beavers from the Monaco period

 

As for the insulation issue, we do get by without a problem with just two 13,500 BTU A/C's which is on the low side these days for a 40' MH.

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Hi. I will look at Powerhouse Coach in Miami Oklahoma. It is a Volvo chassis (they are call truck conversion). They are making those RV from 42 feet up to 55 feet with lots of floorplan. The price is lower than DP and the construction is very good. They had bunks in some model. Good luck finding the best one for you.

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