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2015 RV-Dreams Fall Educational Rally - October 6 - 11, 2015 in Lake Leelanau, Michigan. Save the dates! REGISTRATION will open this winter.
Okay, I know all of you out there have been doing lots of research or you have in the past. So let's see what conclusions we can come up with. Also, let's break it down by price ranges since our budgets are quite varied. For this thread, let's concentrate on NEW fivers.
So, what have you found to be the most recommended brands/models in the following price ranges?
Up to $50,000
$50,000 - $75,000
$75,000 - $100,000
$100,000 and Up
What would also be helpful is an approximate Gross Vehicle Weight Rating, but go ahead and post even if you don't have that.
Include whatever additional information you think might be helpful.
Thanks for your input!
RVing probably not a reality any more.It was a good time while it lasted.
2010 36 GKE Excel Limited, 2007 F550, Blog: hoenigfamily.blogspot.com
Less than 50K - Cedar Creek and Sunnybrook products.
50K to 75K - Cedar Creek, Newmar Torrey Pines, Sunnybrook, and Travel Supreme Classic.
75K to 100K - Daydreamer, Mobile Suites, Newmar Kountry Star, and Travel Supreme.
over 100K - New Horizons and Newmar Mountainaire.
These are my personal choices; however, there are a bunch of others that are definately good choices such as Hitchhiker, Teton Homes, etc. I'm just not that familiar with them.
<$50,000 - Cedar Creek
However many units above that price have significant pro's and cons. It seems the difference is in the eyes of the beholder. True 4 season units are the few elite each with their following.
Best? I think Howard is stirring up a little discussion.
Larry and Jacki-belle Linley with Taiga our minature dachsund - 2011 34 ft Montana towed by a 2014 Silverado Durmax Allison 4x4.
We really like the Keystone Montana 3400RL and the previous mentioned Cedar Creek 36RLTS. Doubletree Suites make a great looking higher end unit but is out of our price range.
Phil and Rudeehttp://workinrvers.blogspot.com2002 Winnebago Journey DL2007 Dodge Dakota2011 Harley-Davidson Electra Glide Ultra Limited
Boy, talk about stirrin' the puddin'...! Actually, I'm very interested in this thread as we're in the looking/researching phase. We're probably going to be very dependent on the inormation in the RV Consumer Group's ratings CD, so I'd also like to hear from anybody who did likewise, and how happy you are with the result.
We're going to be fulltimers; we want something that will be a true four-seasons rig (not so much for cold weather as for keeping down cooling costs in warm/hot climes), and we want something safe that will hold up for a long time. When we go, we want to be debt-free, and trading up 5ers every few years doesn't fit into that model, especially since our disposable income will be a lot less than it is now, while prices on everything will surely be going up over time.
If money were no object, Teton or New Horizons would be at the top of my list. Since money IS an object however, I find myself returning again and again to look at the Nu-Wa Hitchhiker Champagne models... even they aren't cheap by any means, starting at @ $70k msrp.
Tim & Robyn
Tomorrow is the big RV show here in Los Angeles, well, Pomona, going to check out all your wonderful answers.
We have looked at many rigs and one thing we found was the lack of storage in the more expensive 5ers. We just purchased a 3400RL and the main reason was the amount of storage with every option availible except the gen prep and the vacume. Duel pane windows, gel coat, second air, W/D prep, seperate slide controls, and many more, all this for the 50 range. The depreciation, and usability are what we took into consideration when deciding which route to go. Most of the time if you see a used rig on the lot that is a couple of years old they have done so many upgrades to the new ones it is almost cheaper to get into a new rig. The market doesn't seem to be to user friendly to a person that wants to purchase a rig a few years old, especially those that need to finance. Utimately it comes to personal choice and my idea is no way better then someone elses. Just a few of the things we have thought of when making our decision.
Tom N Gina
I am really impressed with NuWa, makers of HitchHiker 5th wheels. After a lot of research and reading they seem to have the best built full-time rigs and more importantly the best customer service to back it up. The NuWa_RV Yahoo Group is a great place to check them out. Not only are there many satisfied HitchHiker owners there, but the CEO and other NuWa management regularly post on this forum. They answer specific questions for owners and wannabe's which I find most refreshing.
We're still researching, but right now in the $50,000-$75,000 (Base MSRP) we like the HitchHiker Discover America Model 329RSB. At 34'-5" in length and a GVWR of 13,500 lbs it fits our size and weight requirements. NuWa also warrants all of their trailers for full-time use.
I too am impressed with NuWa... BUT we haven't actually seen any of their rigs yet. Seems like the only dealers near us sell only the crackerbox products. One thing I learned in the computer business is that it's really risky to buy software based solely on the marketing glossies. Right now my head hurts from all the research I've been doing. I think I'm going to give it a rest for a while and turn instead to starting to get rid of excess 'stuff'.
How far is Strathroy from the Detroit/Windsor area? I have family in the Detroit metro area (Detroit is my hometown), so I'd have a place to stay if we could get up there to visit the Titanium factory. Actually, we'd have a place to stay near Kingsville, Ont. because my cousins have a cottage there on Lake Erie that used to belong to our grandmother... lots of fond memories of summer stays there when I was a kid... all the beach is gone now, though. BUT the lake is cleaner and the fish are back!
fansler wrote: I too am impressed with NuWa... BUT we haven't actually seen any of their rigs yet. Seems like the only dealers near us sell only the crackerbox products. One thing I learned in the computer business is that it's really risky to buy software based solely on the marketing glossies. Right now my head hurts from all the research I've been doing. I think I'm going to give it a rest for a while and turn instead to starting to get rid of excess 'stuff'.Tim Fansler
You should be able to find a NuWa dealer near you by logging on to NuWa's website, www.nuwa.com and using the dealer locater feature. I agree, don't ever buy anything sight unseen. Also checkout the NuWa Owners forum at www.nuwaowners.org. If possible, try to tour NuWa's factory in Chaunte, KS and see how they are built. We hope to do that this summer.
I know what you mean about your head hurting from all the research! I'm having the same feelings, but think it is time well spent and worth a few "headaches" to find the best RV for your budget.
We have been RV'ING 3 months each summer since 1993. Since 1993, I have been researching 5th wheels with a fine tooth comb, hanging out on RV Sites, attending RV Shows and following the RV Consumer Group Ratings each year.
Our selection of a NuWa Hitchiker Discover America 339 RSB was dictated by the following parameters.
1. We did not want to go beyond a 1 ton tow vehicle without duallys. Any of these are good fits for larger tow vehicles also.
2. We wanted an RV with a long track record of dependability and customer service with a good RV Consumer Group rating.
3. We wanted an RV that appealed to us regarding floor plan and owner satisfaction and a feeling we could count on the manufacturer.
For full-time purchase for our personal use my research led to the following list. New Horizon, Excel, NuWa, Travel Supreme, King of The Road, Teton, Carriage, Newmar, Holiday Rambler and McKenzie.
I would suggest anyone looking do a lot of research and verify what people say about their RV. Every persons opinion is just that. Their opinion, including mine. It is easy to get wowed by glitz and sales lingo. Owners tend to support their brand of RV. Take a tour of the factory and see if you can find a website that is operated by owners, not the factory. Get on that website and as many others as you can and ask question after question and look for problems people have and how the manufacturer responds to those problems. To learn about NuWa, go to the NuWa owners forum.
and the NuWa Website. http://www.nuwa.com/
Hi Tim & Robin,
We definitely went through a lot of deliberation over this and I would feel confident with any of these rigs. I presently have a 99 F-350 which has a GCVWR of 20,000 pounds. My truck ready to travel with a full tank of gas and us in it weighs about 6,800, which leaves me with 13,200 for the loaded trailer. I expect to be over my 20,000 pound limit, but we do not plan to travel in the mountains for now and I usually drive around 60 or below. At the present time we do not want to get a new truck, but I did explain to my wife that we might need to consider that, as I do not like being over my ratings. She agreed with that option, which paves the way for a new truck. My biggest concern is stopping the trailer with our present truck, so we ordered the disc brake package which I have heard it is fantastic.
Other than that, it pretty much boiled down to weight, floorplan, reputation, manufacturers support and our personal liking of the NuWa products. We have been attending two large RV shows almost every year since 1994. We saw many rigs we liked and I had studied enough to be able to discern the glitz and hipe from the real quality. I feel so bad for the people that invest so much in rigs I know are not well constructed or supported.
That was a long learning curve, which sounds like you have done also. Every year we would go away from these shows saying to each other that NuWa seemed to make the best use of space for storage and layout to us, but I never liked the exterior look. We both liked the looks of the exterior thsi year and the upgrade on the paint package matches our present vehicle.
NuWa has introduced some new floorplans in the Discover America Series this year to lower the weight without lowering the quality and this enabled us to consider this line without changing tow vehicles yet. The final decision was made after a visit to the factory in November. We spent two days there and had a personal tour of the plant where we had the opportunity to ask lots of questions. They are like family there and we came away feeling they were an old school, honest and quality first manufacturer. There was a new 339 RSB that had just come off the line that they were prepping for the Louisville show. We were able to spend a few hours inside and out taking pictures and talking with their interior decorator. We discovered that they will try to do just about any modification you want to suit your specific desires within reason. That was also a great indication to us that they are very customer oriented. About half of the workers were women and our guide said they have found that women pay much more attention to detail and making sure things are right and look good. That sure is the case in our house.
If we were willing to go with a larger tow vehicle, I would have to go back to looking again and comparing them again with the Champain with the wood frame from the NUWa line and the others I previously mentioned. I would prefer something a little shorter than the 35 1/2 339 RSB, but everything is a compromise and we settled on this. Both of us love the floorplan and spending so much time inside one allowed us to sit and picture how things would work and how storage fit the way we visualized living in it.
These links are very helpful for tow vehicle trailer weight concerns http://www.rversonline.org/ArtWtandBal.htmlhttp://www.klenger.net/arctic-fox/weight/index.html
Hope this helps. If there is anything I haven't covered about our decision, please get back to me.
Allan, Jeanne and Katie the catFull-timers from Alabama"07 -40' Phaeton & '08 Jeep Liberty
Joe and Sherri Living in a Tiffin 35QBA Motorhome towing a Jeep Sahara. http://speedysgreatadventure.blogspot.com/
Jack & Danielle Mayerhttp://www.jackdanmayer.com,2009 Volvo 780 HDT, 2015 New Horizons 45'Custom 5th, smart carNew Horizons Ambassadors - Let us help you build your dream RV.....
Cheryl B. in her new RV
Finally made it (6/23/14)!
2008 DRV MS 36TKBS3 (the CoW: Castle on Wheels), 2005 Ford F550 hauler (the Bull)
My blog is http://mitcheryl-rv-journey.blogspot.com/
My business: www.AZAdminSolutions.com
1998 ...Harney Renegade DP class A
My Service dog and life partner " Nikki"......Klee Kia Miniature Husky....(she Runs the ship!!)
We are not lost in the Woods.....Just Extreme boondocking!!!!!!
If you want the absolutely best built 5ver on the market and can afford it get a New Horizons. Our finalists were their Majestic or an Elite Suites and after taking the factory tours and looking at the construction with an engineer's eye there is no comparison. Heavier than most but still well within limits.
Ours is a 39 foot Majestic. Dry weight about 18,500, loaded weight around 21,500. Rig GVWR 23,500 I think. We're pulling with a 2012 F450 Dualey; no issues with hills, grades or stopping so far…and we've spent the last couple months out here in the Rockies of CO and Canada. We did get the hydraulic disk brakes instead of the electric and also the ABS option. Steepest grade we've been so far probably 9% and no issues either up or down.
I agree with Jack Mayer…it's the best you can buy…but bring a big check when you go.
No major issues with our coach so far just about a year after delivery. I'm not all that impressed with their away from the factory warranty support…we had a slide mechanism bolt break this week. It was an easy repair but it was 125 bucks and their warranty/service guy is giving me troubles over reimbursement. He wants us to go to Lippert directly (despite the 2 year factory warranty)…but Lippert's warranty is (a) only a year from direct retail purchase and (b) specifically excludes third parties including the end user/buyer of the vehicle. Not sure how this will turn out yet…
Service at the factory (known to their owners as Camp Horizons) is pretty decent once they finally get around to actually scheduling your repair.
I agree 100% with Neil & Connie and have toured the factory, plus they are a Christain family with convictions about honesty and doing the right thing. My next choice would be Peterson's Exel or NUWA products, but NUWA has been in and out of producing 5th wheels. So many of the quality high end 5th wheels have shut down because the consumer has bought into the glitz of some of the new 5th wheels and with lower much lower prices. The old adage, you get what you pay for hasn't changed unless you have paid too much. I purchased two 5th wheels new and both were at 70% of suggested retail. I would never trade for a new rig as that really clouds the transaction. Because manufacturers have labeled their products as being full time rigs does not equate to being built well enough to stand up to full time use. There are many new names in the market and many old quality established names that have closed like Travel Supreme, Carriage, King of the Road, Newmar 5th wheels to name some.I would personally stay away from Keystone, Forrest River, Thor, Dutchman, Heartland and Fleetwood products in my selection process unless you plan to trade for a newer one every few years. Just my two cents, but I started RV life in 1960, researched them in depth from 1993 through 2007, when I purchased my last trailer and do not presently intend to buy another. If I was looking at buying another, I would look closely at what it might take to refurbish my present trailer with the updates I would like vs a new purchase. Depreciation with RV's is the downside of RV life. There are several newer names on the market since 2007 that I can not comment on if they are not made by the above mentioned manufacturers.
Likenit, I don't suppose you have an opinion about Luxury Lifestyle RVs? If so, would love to 'hear' your opinion.
Jo & Craig: Class of 2014!
Life isn't about how you survived the storm, it's about how you danced in the rain!
2015 Lifestyle Luxury 38RS
2015 Ford F350 Dually Longbed (It's awesome!)
GENECOP wrote:I am a Big Fan of Class 8 Truck Conversions. I have one, I love driving it, I love being in it. The Brands to consider are Renegade, Showhauler, NRC, Optima, just to name a few. These truck platforms are designed to travel the highways 1,000,000 miles and more, the engines are easily accessed, service can be performed at ANY Truckstop. And finally the most important factor is safety, in a serious accident having a hood and large Detroit Diesel engine in front of me makes me feel a lot safer.
I am a Big Fan of Class 8 Truck Conversions. I have one, I love driving it, I love being in it. The Brands to consider are Renegade, Showhauler, NRC, Optima, just to name a few. These truck platforms are designed to travel the highways 1,000,000 miles and more, the engines are easily accessed, service can be performed at ANY Truckstop. And finally the most important factor is safety, in a serious accident having a hood and large Detroit Diesel engine in front of me makes me feel a lot safer.
Thanks for posting this. I hadn't considered this before but looking at a few, they are NICE! Two quick questions -- what kind of price range are we looking at? I'm expecting something in the neighborhood of luxury motorhomes, starting at $250K and upwards. Next, since they look like (and mostly are) trucks, are special driving licenses required?
No special License required (believe it or not) yes your budget is accurate for new, there are some good used Rigs out there and because the high mileage engine and chassis you can get a real deal. Let me know if you have any other questions.
How long is your RV and do you have problems with where you can camp? How is maneuverability compared to a 5'er or MH?
45' long, I now have several thousand miles under my belt through numerous tight Camp Grounds, I am confident I can handle anything a full size Fifth can or a Large Motorhome. Of coarse there are many small State Parks and older private campgrounds that I would avoid , not everything out there is Big Rig Friendly....
You may want to check with your state of domicile as some may require an extra requirement or two for one's license for that large of an RV.
Terry and Jo2010 Mobile Suites 38TKSB32008 Ford F450 2014 Ford Expedition 4X4 as Tag-along or Scout Two minor works in progess....pictures taken over the years and a webblog:Our photos on PhotobucketIgnoring the Barking Dogs - Terry's Blog
Mary, I have not looked at these in a research mode. They look very appealing. They are trying to connect their name with Carriage, which made great 5th wheels but went out of business. NUWA is offering them for sale at their factory and if NUWA is willing to put their name behind it as a full-time rig they would sell that is good enough for me. I would try to see if there is an owners forum
MarkS & Jackie
MSgt, USAF, Ret
2004 Volvo 780 530 HP Cummins 13 speed
2014 Trilogy 3650RE
pound for pound, more powerful than a locomotive, more efficient than a Prius
Cedar Creek $50 to $70k price range I wish!!! Here in little 'Downunder' land (Australia) a 2012 Cedar Creek 30RL, only two slide outs, no pretty fireplace, no point getting any bigger cause you can't fit it in any of our Caravan (Trailer) Parks cost waaaait for it $180,000.00. But for that price you get the entry door on the correct side (left) so you don't step out and get flattened by the traffic. Then there's the tow vehicle. Of course now that I have read Terry's post on how superior Ford F series are I only want the best F450 King Ranch its a real bargain at $152,000.00. But again you get the steering wheel on the correct side. You blokes and shela's make me laugh.Must go time to squeeze myself back in to my 20' caravan sorry trailer. Wrap the blanket around my knees no furnace remember. But hey I can open the fridge and grab a beer, light the stove and cook a Koala (tastes like chicken) and do the washing up all without getting off my lounge. Bet you can't do that.
Nice to see you again, Steve. Your comments are almost always good.
However, I think I'll stick with buying trucks and RV's here in the U.S.
Don't be a stranger.
Oh Terry why ALMOST always good. Will have to post more until you give me full marks.
I can't even give myself "full marks."
Perhaps I ought to go and review all 17 (as of this writing) of your comments. I just might have to amend my comment.