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Class C Advice


LifeSong
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Hi All,

I'm excited to be a new member of your community.  I've been searching for an RV for over a year to live in full-time.  I want to work camp and travel as I change jobs.  I've been researching for the past two years and hope to gain some clarification from the smart people here. 

Up until just a few weeks ago, I had my heart set on a Class B Travato 59K.  After sitting in it for over an hour, I knew it was not the one for me.  I love the thought of being small and not having a tow vehicle.  But...there is absolutely no storage in this small coach.  I'm all about being a minimalist but love to sew and do some arts and crafts and this coach would limit my ability to carry fabric and my sewing machine without storing "stuff" on the floor.  So...I've decided I will probably need to go to a used Class C. 

  • I would like to stay under 24', with short overhang from the back wheel base
  • Under 96" in width
  • Under chassis protection from plumbing and generator to do some minor off road driving to some fun spots.  I'm not a 4-wheeler but do enjoy being off-the-beaten-path once in awhile (dirt roads, some wash-boarding and ruts).
  • I would like to avoid slide outs if possible to reduce weight and stuff to break. 
  • I also need some decent interior storage. 
  • I really do not want to tow another vehicle or have the upkeep of one if possible. 
  • Budget is tight at under 65k.

Thank you so much for looking at my post and for sharing your thoughts.  I would love to get out there this year if possible.  

Cheryl

 

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Just because a rig has a slide doesn't mean you have to open it if the layout works for you with it closed. That would open the possibility of more rigs working for you.

If you find a Class C with a main level bed you can use the whole over cab bed to store bins of hobby stuff. Lots of room up there.

Linda Sand

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Welcome to the Escapee forums!

Based on what you have shared with us, I agree that a Lazy Daze would be a good RV to consider and looking at RV Trader there are quite a few available if you are willing to travel to them. One thing that you need to be aware of is the weight limits and the amount of weight that you add to the RV. Overloading can be a safety issue and also cause early failures in an RV. Proper loading and weight distribution will impact the handling of the RV. If you do not understand the weight ratings and limits involved, learn about them before you buy an RV. When it comes to towing a car, that is very easy and I strongly suggest you rethink that as you will find it very inconvenient to unhook each time you wish to go shopping or touring and towing a car means far fewer miles put on your RV engine which means it will last longer and the fuel for a small car will be less. Choose a car that can be towed on its wheels and it is very easy to tow, as well as hooking and unhooking. We started our motorhome experience just carrying bicycles and thought a car wasn't needed but after trying towing I would never suggest fulltime without one. 

I don't sew but my wife does and so I know a little bit about the needs for space to use a sewing machine (and a surger) and the added weight of stored yard-goods as well as assorted other craft supplies. I think that you are right to plan for space to carry and use your hobby items as living fulltime is not just a vacation and you will still enjoy the same things on the road that you enjoy now. Another reason for shifting to the larger RV is the bathroom. A tiny bathroom can get very old! 

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A couple of wishes are questionable.

"Under 96 inches" Pretty much the minimum size for  a Class C. Next is 102 inches. 

" 24 feet "  Nowadays that is pretty much the minimum length.  For this size check the GVW and the actual weight to find your carrying capacity.  I would be willing to bet, a penny or two,  that the number is less than a 1000 lbs. 

Get a tow (TOAD) vehicle. You won't like it, as Kirk  said"'very inconvenient". You intend to work camp. This means that you will be parked for longer periods of time. The last thing your RV needs is short trips. The drivetrain needs to be completely warmed. That takes some miles. Not a short jaunt of a few miles. 

Good luck on your search,

Bill

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Thanks, everyone for your rock solid advice, especially about towing a vehicle.  I really appreciate you challenging me on this.

I have a problem with depth perception when driving.  I currently have a minivan that I've driven for years and still struggle to understand where I am on the road and where my tires are towards the edges. I plan on taking a driving class once I've chosen the RV.  I hate to think of myself as a danger to others which is why I wanted to stay short and narrow.

My research continues... 

 

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If I was in the market for a truck camper I think the Northern Light in the video above would be my number one choice. I especially like the insulation and the large tank capacities. I think the only way they could improve is is to put outlets by the table for plugging in electronics.

Linda Sand

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Thank you rm.w/aview, that is a beauty!

One question about going the slide in route, when I need to take off for supplies or to explore the area, do I unplug or simply drop the legs and slide my truck out?  You really had me thinking about the challenges of always having to unplug.

Sandsys, thank you for the link to the driving school.  I was pondering the Escapees BootCamp/Driving School combo but was worried I needed more time with the driving instructor.  This looks much better and I don't have to be "ready" with all my toys by a certain date.

Thanks everyone for taking me under your wing.  

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One thing you may want to consider is that many commercial RV parks do not allow customers with truck campers to remove them from the truck. I'm not sure how common that is because we have never traveled with one, but it is something that I have noticed in campground rules, which I'm one of those people who nearly always read them when I arrive. The other thing to consider is that the support jacks on most truck campers are pretty small so if you remove it from the truck where the jacks are not supported by solid pavement, the jacks could sink into the ground to make it unlevel and/or difficult to load back on the truck. 

We have never felt comfortable in one but we do have neighbors who travel most summers in one for several months. Because a truck camper has very little storage, our neighbor has a 4 door truck with the back seat removed and he has built custom storage containers into space where the seat used to be. Make sure that any type of RV you buy has enough storage space to carry what you wish and also the weight capacity for you to do that safely. Not all RVs with lots of storage have enough weight carrying capacity for you to put much into it. 

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