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I've noticed that many of us have other hobbies and (costs) besides motorcycles. My wife and I have been toying with the idea of an RV. It would probably be around 30ft, this would be our first one. Anyone out there have any pros or cons about "pushers" or tow behinds? We don't have a large pickup for a pull behind so one that drives (pusher) would be our choice. I just thought that I would get some opinions before we talk to a "salesperson". Thanks

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Lots to consider here, not the least is what you plan to do with your RV life? Camp, travel, head to the bike shows/races/? Going to want to take your bike(s) with you?


Some sites that might answer some questions.





Search for first time RV'ers info.


About your ? re: pusher/tow behinds...There are some really nice 26-30'ish class C RV's out there, and a whole bunch of nice 30' travel trailers as well. If you don't have a tow vehicle, then look at the class c RVs. You might want to consider renting an RV for a week to see if you like it.


FWIW, we live in our 40' RV full time. If you'd like some additional info about RV'ing send me a PM and I'll forward my phone number.



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I have owned a 40 footer for what felt like 10 years(4). The greatest day I had with it was the day I sold it.


Please rent one first.


Then figure out how often you are gonna use it.


Then try to figure out the depreciation not to mention upkeep storage, and repairs.


I bet it will be cheaper to rent one.




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They wear out fast. It is somewhat like owning a boat. Probably the best idea is to rent.

Storage can be a problem as well as an expense.

In terms of full time living, I don't think there are any decent, low priced parks.

With the price of fuel the mobility is limited.

And each one is different. By renting you can change the whole configuration, with greater ease than buying and selling.



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It's all about personal preference. We rented a smallish motorhome eleven years ago, and found that it was inconvenient to go into town for a movie. That week cost us a couple of grand, I seem to recall. Glad we did it.




Our trailer, which we bought new from the factory in 2009, was about $20,000, and has maybe lost 15% in value. Yes, it is cramped, but it has everything we need: double bed (cramped), two-seat dinette, fridge, stove, toilet and sit-down shower. Two people and two medium-sized dogs max it out.


You can put a bicycle rack on the back. Almost any 6-cylinder SUV made in recent years will haul it. You can maneuver in pretty tight confines. Takes about 20 minutes to set up when you arrive, and 30 to set up for the road. Once you are set up, you can use your tow vehicle. We have taken it to California, Oregon, Washington and Alberta. Gas mileage gets worse by about 80% when hauling.


I am a fan. I'd sell my house to keep the trailer if I had to.





If you have pets, especially dogs, RV travel has a lot of advantages. Most RV camgrounds allow dogs. On moderately hot days, you can safely leave the dog in the trailer even though it would be deadly to leave him in the car.


For any RV, take your normal daily driving distance, and multiply by 60%.

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I lived full-time in my RV for three years after retirement and spent some serious time in all 48 contiguous states during that time. I towed a motorcycle trailer behind and used the bike to do exploring. It's a great way to see the U.S. The class C i used was reasonably priced and got about 12 mpg. I sold it with 90,000 miles on it for about $20K less than I paid for it. It was a bargain since I had no house or car to pay for during that time.



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We have a C class, Ford V-10, got it last July. Love it. We had a tow behind, for two weeks and traded in for the C class. The reason was space and $$$$. Anything over $50k you can finance as a house.


Get one with slide outs. Makes very roomy inside when you slide the living and bed room out.


The down side with ours is gas. I only get about 7-9 mpg, so our trips are pretty close to the house. The kids and wife love it.

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Had RV's (pull trailer and a class C) when my kids were small. Made more sense to take kids into nature when they could learn from it. Also more convenient with small kids to bring your housing and kitchen with you instead of using restaurants and motels when on vacation. Kids grew up and the RV got sold.

I have a small pickup with a small pop-up truck camper now. Small but adequate for 2 people.

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We've rented RV's and have really loved them during the vacation, but after renting decided we didn't want or need to buy one due to the number of times we'd use it vs. depreciation/maintenance/storage costs. Having said that, with enough use I would imagine they are terrific purchases.


I also vote to rent at least once or twice before purchasing. If you search for used RV's you'll find there are a ton for sale at steeply depreciated prices.

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I've owned 2 Class "A" RVs, but do not currently own any.


My best advice:

1) Rent multiple different units before buying.

2) When buying, buy used.



What worked for me:

In the early 90's, bought an early 80's Winnebago. Cheapest thing I could find that would do the job. Paid $8K. This unit lasted me 5 years. RV was used as a tow vehicle for my Jeep and as a base for my exploring activities. Dry camping off of dirt roads was very common.

This gave me the experience to then upgrade. I bought a 1 year old used Fleetwood Flair for less than 50% of new retail. I had this RV for 10 years, until I could no longer justify keeping it due to lack of enough use.

Both of my RVs were considered entry level, which was fine for me as function/$$$ was much more important to me than style.


I went with a Class "A" because I needed a strong towing vehicle, with full time (space not shared or collapsible) bathroom/shower and bed for 2, Adequate dry camping capabilities were also a requirement.


Both of my units were 22-23' to be able to fit in my driveway.

This was a major factor for me as RVs are all about convenience, and if one has to first go to a storage yard, the convenience factor is lost.


IMO, if I had not had the requirement for a tow vehicle, the RV combination that makes the most sense to me is the pickup / 5th Wheel combination. Major advantages over a class "A", "B" or "C" RV:

* Once hooked up (water, sewer, electricity, etc...) in a campground, one doesn't have to disconnect everything for a trip to the store or site seeing.

* There is also always a "presence" at the campsite.

* One still has a "home" if the pickup is down for maintenance.


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My suggestion reflects some of the above - rent one a few times to see if it fits your lifestyle, and if it meets your expectations. If you like part of the experience, but not other parts, a rental allows you to adapt your experience quite easily the next time out.


I've owned a couple of truck campers, and would get one again without any hesitation. (Well, I'd have to get another pickup first, but you know what I mean...)

We used them on average 2 weekends (or more) a month, before we had kids. Once the kids came along, the lack of time to use it (and our financial situation) made it impractical, and we've been without one for maybe 3 years. But we do miss it.

We went through 3 different units before finding the size and feature set we liked best. We started with a tiny ultra-basic 8-foot model that was easy to use but a little cramped. We then jumped to a huge 12'6" ft model that had awesome features and quite roomy, but a real hassle to use. (Loading/unloading it from the truck, driving, parking, towing - all were more work than enjoyment.) We ultimately ended up with a middle of the road 10' model, that we were very happy with. It even had room enough for the kids (which we had at that point.)


My folks own an Airstream - and they're on the third one. (They keep upgrading to bigger/newer models.) They 'snow-bird' in it, and are sleeping in it at least 4-5 months a year.



My brother-in-law has a Class C (RV built on a van-type chassis) and it only gets used once every couple of years.

My In-laws have TWO trailers (a pop-up, and a 28') that get even less use than that. They liked the idea of trailer-camping and bought the pop-up -- after using it a couple of times found it too small, and bought the bigger one. Despite not using either one often, they felt stuck since the resale value (even when less than a year old) was so much less than they paid, so they chose to keep them. And they sit, unused, in their driveway.


Further thoughts:

Staying in a campground with full utilities is often more than half the cost to stay in a decent motel.

You will have to drive to your destination in a vehicle that gets LOUSY fuel economy, and often isn't much fun to drive. If you're the type who ENJOYS the travel portion of the trip as much as the destination - that's great. But if you have a two-day drive (each way) to get where you'd prefer to be, that's a lot of vacation time you'll spend becoming familiar with the backs of tractor trailers, and gazing at interstate highway.

A "pusher" is another vehicle to maintain/register/insure. Tires dry-rot, fluids need to be changed, batteries go flat, and seals often deteriorate just from sitting. You'll probably want to bring along a small vehicle, else you have to stow and disconnect utilities to drive your lodgings every time you want to run into town for groceries, go visit friends, or see the tourist destinations.

A camping trailer is a little more practical, as the upkeep tasks and costs are lower. The tow vehicle you can use as your tender while camped, as well as being something you'll (probably) use when you're NOT on vacation.

My personal preference is the truck camper -- the truck is useful in the same ways listed above for a tow-vehicle used with a camping trailer, AND you can still tow stuff behind it. (Trailer for your bikes, trail toys, boats, etc...) Oh - if you have a 4x4 truck (and a smaller sized truck camper) you can go camping in places that a class-A or trailer wouldn't dream about going.


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I've had a Class A for 11 years. It got a lot of use when we were showing dogs, but not so much lately, although we lived in it full time for about 6 months during the process of moving into our current home, and it salvaged our opportunity to move to a situation that is a dream come true.


Pros: Space; comfort; livability (especially with a good bathroom); security; nearly infinite farkle-ability; if you have mechanical problems, at least you've got shelter.


Cons: Maneuverability; underpowered engine vs. GVW; inadequate OEM suspension and steering components, particularly vs GVW; inadequate handling without suspension and steering upgrades; impractical to move once set up (nice to have a get-around vehicle -- we use our bikes); nearly infinite farkle-ability (like a bike, getting one is just the beginning); when -- NOT "if" -- you have mechanical problems, your shelter is stuck wherever you stop; poor resale value for most models; poor fuel economy (hard to see better than 10mpg, regardless of load).


In my experience, lots of people sell pop-up trailers, or lesser travel trailers or motorhomes, after one sleepless night in a windy or noisy place.


Also in my experience, a motorhome is the least reliable vehicle, from a mechanical standpoint, that its owner has ever owned. Certainly true in my case. I've been stranded by a breakdown a few times, including on the trip home after we bought it. If you don't have patience for such things, and the finances to absorb expensive repair bills, don't buy one.

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Thanks to all who responded, we are going to try the "rental route" first. 80% of the time it will be just my wife and I, we will probably just stay within a state or two. This is just the begining of the research and I thank all of you.

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We've lived in our 30' 5th wheel for 2 of the last 10 years. We love it. If I were buying now, I'd look hard at a used class A or C, so we could bring the motorcycle along.


Have fun trying it out.

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Bought a Fleetwood Bounder just after 9/11. We had a lot of fun with it for a few years but then it just became a big lawn ornament. smiley-confused005.gif

And if ya thought BMWs lost their value! :cry:


Lot of good memories though!





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