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Post Info TOPIC: Remember why you are unique and special when buying an RV


RV-Dreams Family Member

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Remember why you are unique and special when buying an RV


I often see people asking how to do something after they bought their RV, something that would have been much easier with a different RV choice.  When someone has the nerve to point that out you can even learn why they made the choice.  Often it is because they did not know that this something made them special and they could not make the same choice as a friend, relative or salesperson told them.  Examples of "something" are being able to dry camp, food restrictions dictating more storage or using bulky appliances, a need to carry a musical instrument, needing to carry extras  to work on the road, required exercise space, and more.  

If those giving you advice, or just plain telling you what to buy, don't understand your need, then their advice is not complete for you. Many don't understand what is not important to them.  If  the person has no food allergies, they won't understand what that means.  If they are not doing the kind of work you are, they won't understand the space requirements or internet requirements.  If they don't dry camp, they won't understand you need more batteries, etc.  

I know I could go on an on with examples, but wanted to bring this up since I see it on forums.



-- Edited by bjoyce on Monday 27th of January 2020 10:59:03 AM



-- Edited by bjoyce on Monday 27th of January 2020 10:59:47 AM

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Bill Joyce,
40' 2004 Dutch Star DP towing an AWD 2020 Ford Escape Hybrid
Journal at http://www.sacnoth.com
Full-timing since July 2003



RV-Dreams Family Member

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Good point Bill. I've had people tell me I need to look at gas a RV even when they know I'm going to be pulling 6,000# truck. Or tell me I need to look at a class A when I decided a long time ago that the advantages, for me, of a Super C far outweigh the extra space you get in a class A. As you alluded to, the list goes on and on. I think the best thing folks can do if you want to help someone is to give suggestions of things to think about. I know this forum has made me change my mind a few times. Just my two cents and I have even bought anything yet.

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RV-Dreams Family Member

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Just gotta say

Bill you always have a great way of dispensing advice.
And it looks like you knew what you needed back in 2004



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Bill and Laurie

2002 Airstream Land Yacht 39ft DP

2019 VW Jetta, toad

FT since 9-17-17



RV-Dreams Family Member

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When we went full time, our RV was a 35' 2002 Dolphin gas motorhome that we were already using. It taught us what we really needed. My wife takes credit for us having the Dolphin, since I wanted a truck camper. She was right.

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Bill Joyce,
40' 2004 Dutch Star DP towing an AWD 2020 Ford Escape Hybrid
Journal at http://www.sacnoth.com
Full-timing since July 2003



RV-Dreams Family Member

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That's sound advice, Bill.

We have been full-timing for 13 months now in a rig very similar to your first one. We have a 99 National Tropical that we found with low mileage and detailed maintenance and repair records. It was exactly what we were looking for as it fit our needs perfectly. However that said, it is unlikely our needs are the same as anyone else's. We liked the fact that the previous owner upgraded to a 50 amp electrical system, getting rid of the 30a with EMS many owners complain about.

Why was this rig perfect for us? First off we could afford it, as we were able to pick it up for only $15,000, which might be a lot for a 20yr old MH, but for one with 28k miles and its features which suited our unique needs, it seemed like it was meant for us. Sure, an older RV will require more TLC, but we are prepared for that.

We're one of those guys who likes to boondock - a lot. Our first year we spent 5 months boondocking in AZ and UT. This meant that we wanted sufficient load capacity for a nice solar system. I installed the first half of it (a 620 watt, 12v system on the side of the MH) in June. We plan on adding the second phase (a bigger 48v system covering the roof) in a couple years. This meant we'd need ample carrying capacity (which the tag axle provided) and good insulation, that its dual pane windows helped with too. I liked the fact that it had one deep slide in the living area, but not the added weight (and reduced insulation) of a second slide in the bedroom. We wanted large tank capacities too, for extended off grid use - more so than most RVs in our price range had. It met our needs there too.

Of course no RV is perfect, but all seem to be a series of compromises. For instance we would have liked to had jacks that were mounted higher on the chassis to provide more ground clearance for boondocking, as ours drag on occasion. But what can you do? I think all RV owners eventually customize their rig to make it their own. We pulled out the old, tube TVs, built an entertainment center and added a modern 55" 4k TV, 4k Bluray player, sound bar, etc. We also installed a 600w PSW inverter which powers out entertainment center and my PC which I mounted on the wall in our bedroom. We took out the sofa bed and installed a recliner in its place, moving the extra swiveling recliner beside it, to act as a second TV recliner that swivels and slides forward to make a seat at the table. We modified the bathroom and bedroom as well, again to our quirky uniqueness. In short we made practical changes to suit our individualized needs, but possibly not those of anyone else. We don't really care about resale value on a 20 yr old rig, as we built it for us, not the next guy. Besides when we're done with it, there won't be much resale value left anyway. The way it looks now, this will probably be our last RV. They say buy your last one first; well I think we did.

Chip



-- Edited by Sushidog on Thursday 30th of January 2020 02:23:56 PM

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1999 National Tropical Class A gasser

Toad - 2.4l Chevy Cobalt SS with 400k miles and counting.



RV-Dreams Family Member

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Our criteria for our rig have certainly evolved as we considered what would work for us or not based on evolving thoughts on what we wanted to accomplish in our rig. We went from Class A diesel to fifth wheel and back, and back again over a period of 5 yrs. What you see in our signature is where we landed based on our unique combination of wants and needs for our first and hopefully last home on wheels. We considered used/preloved or whatever you want to call it and we came close pulling the trigger a couple of times but each time there was something we did not like about the floor plan or the infrastructure of the rig. YMMV as they say.  It also fits our allotted RV budget without depleting reserves which is in my book a primary consideration for anybody thinking about this type of adventure. It's easy to get in over your head and we were and are determined to not to go down that rabbit hole.

FWIW



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Brian, Cindi & Josie (our fur baby)
2017 RAM 3500 Laramie 4x4 CCLB, CTD, Aisin, B&W hitch, dually
2020 Keystone Montana Legacy 3813MS w/FBP ,
MORryde 8k IS, Kodiak disc brakes, no solar  YET!



RV-Dreams Family Member

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Bill J makes a very good point as to giving advise, opinion based on criteria.  Some may note in many of my posts I've tried to give reasons "for" the answer.  One of my tag lines is "It depends."  And so it does.  .  



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Bill & Linda



RV-Dreams Family Member

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The RV life is like a winding road, you never know what’s around the next curve.  Seven years into our adventure our directions have changed several times.  That is great news! 

A few years in we discovered that because the savings from RV’ing and our Mexican winters that we could begin our international travels - 19 countries so far.  We certainly never had that in our retirement plans.

We have picked-up so many new interests through the years that our life and travels have turn out different than any of our original plans.  Turns out we love caves, love exploring Indian ruins, love hiking in the mountain, love finding secluded boondocking spots, love experiencing new cultures.  We love change.

Last years cancer has been another blessing.  It caused to have to turn our pattern and routine upside down.  We moved our home base back to the USA.  We are now excited to begin exploring the Southwest during our winters.  I may not be able to hike like we did before.... but I am loving ATV’ing around the desert and mountains.

If I could give one piece of advice to my fellow RV’ers or those just planning.... embrace CHANGE.  You can‘t know what’s around the next curve, just that it will be an adventure.

I’m not sure it matters what RV we are in.  What matters is where we go and what we see.  Life is one big adventure!!!

 



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Russ & Terri Ranger

Travel since July 2013

Home base: Buckeye,AZ

Wandering the USA & Canada in our Holiday Rambler Endeavor 40' PDT Motorhome

Travel so far: 49 States - International Travel -19 countries

http://grandbanksruss.blogspot.com



RV-Dreams Family Member

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Many years ago we started researching the idea of full-timing. At that time we knew very little about it, so we started asking questions of anyone and everyone. Some of you are those who helped us the most. It seemed that each answered question generated at least five more questions, but eventually we got to the point where we could start thinking about what sort of RV would best suit our needs.

Move ahead a could of years and we were looking at some specific coaches. By that time we had figured out that a diesel pusher motor home with no slides best suited what we thought we would be doing, and we had a budget. We had purchased a small travel trailer as a learning experience, and to test whether or not we even liked the idea of rv living. In the winter of 2012 we put the trailer up for sale at the dealership where we bought it, and it sold a few months later. We bought our Foretravel in the spring of 2013. At that time it seemed to be the best match for what we thought we would be doing.

As time went on, though, we learned that we weren't actually living the way we thought we would be. We're staying in one place for longer periods of time. As a result, we've put our Foretravel up for sale and we'll be getting something else. That, too, is part of the full-time experience. Life changes and we need to adjust, too.

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David, kb0zke

1993 Foretravel U300 40'

Build number 4371

For sale



RV-Dreams Community Member

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Agree. I started with a trailer, very nice one. Main reason - finances. At least I was camping. I enjoyed it a lot, but really wanted a class A MH. After a year, I sat down, looked at thew numbers again and decided I really wanted a MH. The next purchase was a class C, which I really like, except for the fact that I have to extend the rear slide to go to bed. Initially that was not a problem. I am a no toad solo. Next, I discovered I could get around a lot more on a bicycle. Now the rear slide cannot be extended with the bicycle rack on. Therefore sleeping on the road was slightly more comfortable than sleeping in cars, that i did all of my life.

Things happen in life. I was planning to wait until I was in my seventies to finally get the class A that I always wanted. Many suggested I not wait. Last year my third (as in two prior) best friend died. This was the third in five years - he was only three months older than I. That is when I decided to take the chance and get it now. No one knows what tomorrow holds. Now with a recovering back I need the bed. I hope all goes well with the new one. the current C is now almost perfect. The only thing that is constant is change

Yes, there are many individual factors to consider for a rig. I lost much money in all of these changes, but I am happy I did not buy the first cheap A that I went in to get. Having waited, I was able to spend years researching, looking at rigs, talking to folks, live and in many forums. What an education. This time also allow for the building of finances and development of a game plan.

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