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Author Topic: Choosing the right rig  (Read 553 times)


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Choosing the right rig
« on: July 30, 2017, 03:26:56 PM »
My wife and I are looking to go full-time. I allready know I want an f350 diesel. But the problem I'm having , the length of the rig.
We know we want a Jayco. But I want to stay under 30' so we can get into State and National parks. But my wife wants to go larger.
My question is, what size is "to big" for traveling around?
2015 Ford F-250 6.2L


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Re: Choosing the right rig
« Reply #1 on: July 30, 2017, 07:28:41 PM »
Just a thought.

Instead of buying a new truck and a new RV, have you ever thought about buying a Motorhome and towing a vehicle behind it?
2002 Rexhall Rose Air  Cummins 8.3  350hp
West MI Summer   Central FL Winter


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  • Western KY for now.
Re: Choosing the right rig
« Reply #2 on: July 30, 2017, 08:44:16 PM »
Welcome to the Forum!  Thanks for coming before purchase!!

It seems all of your options are still open, so I suggest looking at them all.  As you look, some types will eliminate themselves, some floor plans will scream NO while others will be more inviting.

The #1 most important factor in ANY RV choice is floor plan.  Do you both love the floor plan and will it work well for you.

State and National Parks are beautiful campgrounds, BUT most are older with smaller camp sites.  Many can handle a bit bigger campers than 30 ft FW.  Others can not.  There are almost always private campgrounds nearby that will be able to accommodate you.  Also note that few  National park campgrounds have full hookups.  Many offer electric, but may not offer 50A service.  Especially out west, very few offer water or sewer hookups.  Some State Parks offer better amenities, others do not.  Most private campgrounds do offer full HU.

There are many discussions on Class A vs FW.  If you currently own neither, the cost of a decent used F350 diesel and decent used FW will run $60K - $100K.  That is similar to the cost of a decent used MH. 

It is generally agreed that MH are better for travel because all the "necessary" areas are accessible without getting out of the MH.  This includes the fridge, toilet and bed.  They usually have a toad attached, which is nicer for local travel than a big truck, if you are not used to driving one.  If you have mechanical problems, your house goes into the  shop.

FW are nicer for living in because they generally have more / bigger slide outs which provide more inside living space.  The truck is your local transportation.  If you have mechanical problems, most Ford dealers can work on your truck while you are in a nearby campground.

With all that said, more full timers have Class A rigs than FW.

Do lots of research and ask lots of questions!
Preacher Gordon, DW Debbie
09 Grand Junction 35 TMS  Progressive HW50C
Andersen Ultimate hitch
2013 F350 Lariat LB SRW Supercab diesel 4X4   TST TMS  Garmin 760
Nimrod Series 70 popup (sold)
It's not a dumb question if you do not know the answer.


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Re: Choosing the right rig
« Reply #3 on: July 30, 2017, 10:03:09 PM »
I agree with the previous replies. If you dont have the truck yet, look into motorhomes. you can find a nice one for the price of the f350 diesel alone, then add in the cost for a FW.

Decision is up to you, but check them out before you pick.
Future Fulltimer

2011 F350 Lariat CCLB SRW
No RV yet!!


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  • Posts: 10
Re: Choosing the right rig
« Reply #4 on: July 31, 2017, 10:38:02 AM »
had a motorhome and now a 5th wheel. My motorhome, when traveling, was fantastic. Sit back and watch the world go by and a chilled drink or bathroom were just steps away. Maintenance was a PIA as well as a bit cramped at times (wasnt a quarter million dollar rig). My 5th wheel is another story. Absolutely love it. Got the 34 footer with apposing slides, king size bed and 50" tv. I feel I am now in an appartment when the day is thru. Towing is not bad at all at that length, actually, just coming home from a trip to New York yesterday, I told my wife I actually am more comfortable driving my well appointed truck with 6 airbags etc. than I ever was with the Motorhome pulling a trailer or toad. The only way I would go back to a motorhome would be costing me a ton of money to have the same luxury I now have in my 5th wheel.
Deb & George
2015 Alpine 3010RE
2015 silverado 2500 HD

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Choosing the right rig
« Reply #5 on: August 01, 2017, 10:43:41 AM »
Useful advice above.

The "30 feet or less" thing should not be a rigid criteria. The max size of rig that fits in any given RV park varies widely and the best that can be said about "30 ft" is that it gets you into a few more places than 31 ft (and a few less than 29 ft). We've seen plenty of campsites or even entire campgrounds where even 25 ft is a challenge.

If your wife feels you need more space, to my mind that is at least as important as accessibility to a few more campsites. Probably more so (cause if Mama ain't happy, NOBODY gonna be happy!]. You and she need to sit down and talk at length about wants and needs, interior (livability), exterior (storage) and towability concerns. They all involve trade-offs and no single factor should dominate unless you both strongly agree.  She needs to understand that every increment in length reduces your site options a bit, but you need to give some weight to the livability of the rig once you get it there.  Since you are going to be living in the RV, she still has to prepare meals, make beds,  provide clothing for the two of you, etc. The practical application of those needs is more space in a lot of places, e.g. countertops, storage, etc. And both of you will appreciate a decent size bathroom for daily use, something that is often sacrificed in smaller rigs.
Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL


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Re: Choosing the right rig
« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2017, 03:52:56 PM »
about the only thing I can add is to suggest to try not get hung up on the number as much as trying to find a floorplan that "fits"

DW just knew within a minute of walking into the floorplan we have that it's the one.  While not as smart perhaps, as Gary, I knew enough to just say yes. 8)

We do a lot of state parks in this area, and don't generally have too much of an issue at 31ft....but we have been in a few places where our 31ft didn't leave much of a place to park a big F-350.

Oh, & I'll add this.... for some reason I have a sense of calm come over me almost every time I see someone pulling past with a TT in tow...knowing that with our MH I don't have to mess with the hitching and unhitching at all.  I'm very experienced at towing, so that doesn't come from an inability...comes more from laziness I suppose
Brad (DW + 3 kids)
13 Thor Chateau 31L Class C on Ford E-450
'06 Silverado
'05 Rockwood Freedom 1910 (5-1/2 years)
former tent campers

Arch Hoagland

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  • Clovis CA
Re: Choosing the right rig
« Reply #7 on: August 01, 2017, 06:50:59 PM »
Keep in mind...If Momma ain't happy, nobody is happy. 

I think for full timing I'd want the biggest rig I could get.
2004 Monaco La Palma 36 DBD
W22, 8.1 gas,  Allison 1000 Transmission
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2000 Lexus RX300, 4020lb
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