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joecool911

Moving away from wife

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We have a rental, which she wants me to move into...but what would I do with a 2,000+ sf house? It would cost me thousands to furnish it...starting from zero. So my current thought is to buy a travel trailer bumper pull in the 35' range. They come basically furnished...even with a flat screen tv. Just buy some bedding, pots and pans, dishes and that's about it. 

 

Does anyone have suggestions on brand/model? New to a few years old. I'd like to keep the cost down, but financed the payments on a $35,000 unit are pretty affordable. I want a bedroom and no other bunks. Multiple slides would make it feel more spacious. I'd live in it for an undetermined amount of time. Eventually becoming an RV again....maybe. Who knows, maybe I'll just buy a piece of land eventually and park it there.  But for now just staying on friends property. 

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make sure the tanks are enclosed inside the heat space of the trailer (winter package). Look at the undersides.. the best are enclosed with sheet metal. Also look to see how thick the walls are at the window sil for  thickness of insulation and thickness of framing in the walls.

I heard the best are built by Cardinal but I think those are 5th wheels.

 

I think you'd be happier with a 5th wheel too.

 

One of the most truthful sales people I met about construction and quality was in Milwaulkie, Oregon called 'B Young RV'. Go look at everything and study the construction and quality. Avoid getting taken in by the glitz just look behind everything you can to see how they care what they did.

Edited by JAG1

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Good advice above. I have a 35' 5th wheel and pretty much live in it. Every thing I need is in there including a washer and dryer. If you live in it as I do you will never regret it. Not good for dry camping but fine at the rv park or any other form of wet camping. If I had it to do over again I would down size some. It was fine when the wife traveled with me but now that she does not it's just bigger than I like. A 28 30 foot would be plenty big enough for me. Mine is a Cardinal and it has held up pretty well. No major issues though it is getting some years on it now. Just watch out how  long you get the payments for. You can finance them new for 15 years and get a really easy payment to make but it takes forever to pay it off.

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I would have never imagined that either until I started staying alone. Just kind of tired of hauling that big sob around. My first one was only 28' long and a foot or so shorter. It was plenty of room. Not as much storage in that one but it sure kept the weight of it. 

 

But, to each his own. what makes me happy might not make someone else happy.

Edited by dripley

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I think too big and it might be difficult to sell later down the road. I Think IBM's 5 th wheel is 28 feet. It's nice inside. I like shorter cause if you get nasty neighbors it's easier to get on the go again easier to find a place.

 

Winter  rv use gets a lot of condensation built up in the unit. Best to get a dehumidifier that's built in or has room for it. This is when good insulation package counts a lot. I think others use the air conditioning somehow in winter to reduce that, but a good dehumidifier will be the best with it's own drain into the plumbing.

 

I would rather do like Dripley... get a little smaller and get the best quality. It will save you in the long run cause the words out that a lot of rv's are built not so good anymore. Stay away from the big flashy graphics and sticker paint décor on the outside if you can. Those sticker paint go bad and create a hassel.

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"Does anyone have suggestions on brand/model?"

 

We spend 1/2 the year or more in ours, or used to...until medical problems.  Our latest is a 2013 Arctic Fox, sure has been good to us and held together well.   They are mostly on west coast, don't know where you are located at. 

 

For full timing in that size of trailer... heated tanks and washer/dryer and two A/C's with 50 amp would be a bonus.

 

In-laws have an older Comfort, don't know if they are still made, but there's is well built.

Edited by 015point9

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Like I've got the 31 foot Jayco and I love the extra heavy duty frame. There is way less flexing of the body this way. 50 gallons of fresh water, 2 gray holding tanks, and 1 black tank. Two 30 pound propane bottles. Now with the solar power and the 1,200w inverter, I can boondock anywhere now. For two people they can live very well in mt 31 foot RV plenty or water for weekend getaways and enough storage to eat like a king for a weekend. 

 

As for mine I used it a few time for job site work and it's not bad. Vey roomy for 2 people to stay in and plenty of room to stretch out. Kind of like this weekend for me I kind of escaped for a period of time on the Salmon River in Riggins, ID. I just got home today.

 

DSCF4054.JPG

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I keep having people tell me I need a 5th wheel. What's the advantage if you're not moving it much or at all? I don't want to remove my canopy to haul the trailer. 

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Personal I like bumper pulls over 5th wheels. Like my photo above I couldn't haul my ATV along with me if I had a 5th wheel. No, I don't want a toy hauler either. The thing about toy hauler is you end up with the fuel smell and dirt/mud from your toys in the trailer. So in my case the ATV loads in the bed of the truck and now hitch up the trailer.  The RV remains a living quarters and I still keep the bed of the truck for haulng more cargo and no a 5th wheel plate.

 

Also bumper pulls only put about 12-15% of the trailer weight on the truck. Where 5th wheel places about 25% of the trailer weight on the truck. So for example my 8,000 pound RV is about 1200 pounds of tongue weight vs a 5th weight design 2000 or more.

 

 

9 hours ago, joecool911 said:

I don't want to remove my canopy to haul the trailer. 

 

I'm the same way the canopy be comes extra storage if need be. But with a 5th wheel that storage is lost. 

Edited by Mopar1973Man

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10 hours ago, joecool911 said:

I keep having people tell me I need a 5th wheel. What's the advantage if you're not moving it much or at all? I don't want to remove my canopy to haul the trailer. 

You really should go visit RV dealers and do walk through s of both, just to get a feel and check out different floor plans, I would just not get carried away with all the glamour and glitz and a lot of unnessesary stuff they put on these days

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12 minutes ago, 01cummins4ever said:

I would just not get carried away with all the glamour and glitz and a lot of unnessesary stuff they put on these days

Absolutely... Way too much focus on the toys, glitz, etc. Floor plan, cooking/prep space, bathroom layout, bedroom layout are important. Won't do you any good to have a tiny bathroom you keep bumping elbows or your head attempted to bathe yourself. You won't survive long if you have a bed that is too small to sleep in or uncomfortable. Get's rather maddening if you don't have good amount of room for cooking and prepping for cooking. 

 

So like when I did my walk through I actually laid in the beds. Found out the jack-knife sofa fits MoparMom just fine and the Queen bed is fine for me. The Jack-knife sofa I can lay on but I'm stuffed wall to wall to fit kind of uncomfortable. The tub/shower is plenty large enough for me to bend over wash my lower body without hitting anything. There is space for cooking and prep work but you have to plan it out and keep thing cleaned up. So it depends on your usage of the RV. Like mine is truely recreational use vs living full time which will change the floorplan requirements some. 

 

https://mopar1973man.com/garage/vehicle/103-2000-jayco-eagle-296-fbs/

 

 

Edited by Mopar1973Man

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For me, I was thinking that a toy hauler would have storage for stuff and avoid storage unit rent...not for ATV's. Plus more likely to have a generator. One I saw had 3 axles and 16' of hauler room. 

Edited by joecool911

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I would avoid using a toy hauler for storage. That will get very old after awhile being limited but all the stuff piled up. Generator will get really old to listening to it run. No matter how good of a generator you have on board it will get old listening to the droning engine under the floor. This is why I went to solar and inverter that way I don't listen to the noise nor have to keep feeding it expensive fuel to have power. 

 

Like @LiDaR lives in a 31' Airstream Trailer and which she has customized to fit her needs. Still, in all, she has a storage unit because there is only so much you can cram in an RV and eventually you start moving things out because you'll get tired of tripping over stuff. 

 

I've lived out of a Class C Dodge Jamboree motorhome (20 foot) for a few years. You'll find out there will always be too much stuff crammed in the RV and be looking to either sell it or put it in storage because space is limited. At first, you find you can get everything to fit inside but then you start learning that every time your looking for something you end up pulling a bunch of stuff out to find the thing/object you're looking for. The only thing I can suggest is downsize and sell you excess stuff and/or find a storage unit. I highly suggest that you don't attempt to get a RV for storage reasons and living quarters you will not be happy. Best suggestion is to buy a second enclosed utility trailer for storage. This way you can store your stuff on your property in another trailer. 

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The best advice above is to go and look at both and see what fits your needs. Both stiles have advantages. I personally like a 5th wheel. It shortens everything up and has good storage. They can get quite large height wise as mine is near 13' tall. its advantage there is that all 6'4" of me can stand even in the bedroom which I could not do on my first one. If I do downsize I am going to look at a bumper pull but not convinced i would buy one. But this is just my preferences. Yours will differ.

 The other good advice is to not get sold on a bunch of glamour and glitz. It can get very expensive. If you dont see what you want at first keep looking. They are just like car salesmen and dont want you to leave. Keep looking and maybe they will sweeten the deal on  one.

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Like @dripley points out 5th may shorten up the trailer but 5th do become quite a bit taller and have a larger frontal area and drag. Where bumper pulls are short of the storage but have a lower profile but do become longer. 

Edited by Mopar1973Man

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How big of a solar/battery system would I need to be off grid full time? I want to be able to use a flat screen TV and computer daily. Biggest power consumption would be furnace. Bet I couldn't use microwave or air conditioner though?

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2qu6n0n.jpg

 

Here are 4000 watts of an inverter, 820 Amp/hours of batteries on a 24-volt system. The batteries weigh in at a little over 1,000 pounds. I've got 400 watts of solar charging and about 250 watts of hydro power. I've got enough power to run anything device in the house except the electric stove, electric oven, electric dryer, or air condition. 

 

Just think of the maximum amount of power you need to run everything you want. at 4,000 watts I'm drawing 166 amps. So at full run could run 4.9 hours and the batteries would be dead. This number is a bit high actual run time is shorter because I've set my dead voltage higher to prevent battery damage. So you operational time is based on loads and how much battery amp hours you have. Solar/hydro just are how fast I can recharge. They way I'm set up I can live off grid quite a while without firing up a generator. Like if I knew I was going to be doing high power demand then I would fire up the generator and not wipe out the batteries. 

 

Even though we operate on the grid yet during the summer time it very possible for me to sell back the power that I'm producing. It not a huge amount but 1-3 Amps during the midday sun and still powering everything in the house. 

Edited by Mopar1973Man

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Mike, he's talking about his RV... how's going to fit and haul all that around rascal head? :)

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Well my A/C unit on my RV would take 3,500 watt generator minimum to even run it. So to show him size of system and what it takes to drive these devices. I'm sure he'll back down like I've done 2 camping trips now with my RV with 1,200 watt inverter, 45w solar panel no problems. No A/C, No, Electric water heater, No electric fridge. All on propane. I was able to watch TV (DVD Movies) most of the evening. Lighting is the hard part which need to be converted to LEDs.

 

1jt7ax.jpg

 

DSCF4054.JPG

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I see then.

 

I don't have solar and don't charge off the truck. Just use shore power and a quiet generator to charge batteries and they are only for lights, water pump, furnace fan and TV once in awhile.

 

Everything else is propane which you need to check on once in awhile. the flexible hoses start leaking after around 10 years and the regulator needs changing every ten years as well for safety.

Edited by JAG1
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The trick with RV power is being small enough to haul with the RV but big enough to cover the majority of what you plan on powering. The trick to remember is watts will remain the same but the 12V side will be 10 times higher amperage draw that the 120V side.

 

For example 

 

10 Amps x 120 Volts = 1,200 Watts = 12 Volts x 100 Amps

 

I know this is not exact but the basics are shown. This why I limited my system on the RV to 1,200 Watts knowing the DC load will be upwards of 100 Amps. It would be a different story if this was a 24 volt system but then again the weight would be too much for an RV. Personally if I had the extra funds I would look at these for the RV, might need bigger battery boxes but...

 

http://www.trojanbattery.com/product/t-145/

 

 

 

Edited by Mopar1973Man

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Joe most run of the mill RV chargers are not very good and can possibly ruin a good set of batteries. Be careful of the type of charge system before investing in good batteries. The charge controller for the solar needs to be a good one also.

 

You can always add more solar panels and more storage capacity with the batteries  but still.... I would not rely entirely on the 12 volt system. Best to have a back up plan in winter with propane and electricity hook up. You'll need a dehumidifier like said before or it gets crazy inside a damp RV in winter.

 

I perk my coffee with propane over the stove it save coffee and tastes better.

 

I don't like inverters much because you loose amp hrs in just going from 12 volts to 120 volts ac. I do have a small inverter for shaving and running the TV sometimes but mostly like 12 volt appliances instead.

 

Sometimes the size and number of Solar panels is limited by the roof space on the rv or you can do like Mike..... Park in shade, yeah, yeah, and place the panels in the sun.

 

Just some thoughts.

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Is there a style RV construction that's more better...bad grammar, but serious question. Wood vs aluminum frame. Fiberglass vs aluminum skin. Molded nose and roof that seams further away from corners???

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