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Author Topic: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions  (Read 655 times)

Benne77

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Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« on: January 23, 2018, 11:23:33 AM »
First post and brand new to this forum. My wife and I are both in healthcare and plan to buy fifth wheel and truck to begin traveling and providing healthcare around the US. I have talked to many in our fields doing travel therapy and plan to start toward the end of this year. We are hoping to acquire a fifth wheel and truck for 40-45k maximum total. Most of it will be in cash with 10 to 15k likely having to be financed. We will be traveling approximately 4 days a year with the fifth wheel attached 200-600 miles at a time. Otherwise the trick will be used for me to get to and from work.

I have been looking into trucks and fifth wheels lately and have a few questions for the community.
What are individuals thoughts on buying a new fifth wheel vs one that is 3 or 4 years old? I am somewhat worried about leaks if it is too old? What do you consider to be too old?
I am also wondering if you guys recommend a particular brand fifth wheel that would cost around 18k to 26k? We are looking at ones around 30 feet with bedroom up front and prefer decent size wardrobe, shower, and fridge.

The truck that I have been looking at is a Chevy 2500. Likely around 80000 miles and newer then 2011. am wondering if this would be enough and if we would need a diesel.

We are going to the RV show in our state in February and donít plan to buy here as we wonít have a place to store it. Are the deals at RV shows good deals? Any other recommendations that you have for purchasing truck and fifth wheel.

Thank you all for taking the time to read this and appreciate your responses on the above questions.

donn

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2018, 11:52:18 AM »
Forget any 2500 series truck.  They just do not have enough weight capacity for much over a 10,000 GVWR fiver.  Meaning somewhere around 28 fert long.
My 40K mile old Dodge Ram 3500 dually and 36 foot Cedar Creek will be for sale in the fall for right around what your looking to spend.  Send me a PM if your interested and I will give you the particulars

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #2 on: January 23, 2018, 12:09:40 PM »
As Donn says, a 3/4 ton (2500/F250) is typically limited to around a 10,000 lb 5W due to its cargo payload limitation. That will get you a nice 30-footer, or maybe 32 ft in a "lite" model. It will probably be rated to pull a much higher weight, but cannot carry the 20% pin weight of a 5W type RV.  If you went for a travel trailer [or some low-deck utility trailer], a 2500 could do a lot more.  Assuming you will want something larger and heavier for living, you probably want a 3500 with a diesel power plant.

Frankly, though, for your needs I would consider having the trailer professionally moved and getting a nice but economical sedan or SUV for an everyday driver. Professional RV movers seem expensive until you price out the cost of a big truck and the travel expenses for only 4 days per year of need.

3-4 years old is not at all old. Neither is 10-12 years, if it has had decent care.  Leaks are not particularly age related. All the seams on an RV flex a lot, both during travel and through temperature expansion & contraction. The many caulked seams need to be inspected annually and touch up as needed.
Gary
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SeilerBird

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2018, 12:41:51 PM »
If you are only going to be moving a few times per year it might be worth your while to just buy a car and pay a service to move the RV if the distances are not too great.
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Benne77

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2018, 02:20:21 PM »
Forget any 2500 series truck.  They just do not have enough weight capacity for much over a 10,000 GVWR fiver.  Meaning somewhere around 28 fert long.
My 40K mile old Dodge Ram 3500 dually and 36 foot Cedar Creek will be for sale in the fall for right around what your looking to spend.  Send me a PM if your interested and I will give you the particulars

I would be interested in seeing what you have available. Appreciate the reply! Also interested in learning more about the option of having someone else tow the 5th wheel. I did not even know that existed.

Benne77

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #5 on: January 23, 2018, 02:25:26 PM »
As Donn says, a 3/4 ton (2500/F250) is typically limited to around a 10,000 lb 5W due to its cargo payload limitation. That will get you a nice 30-footer, or maybe 32 ft in a "lite" model. It will probably be rated to pull a much higher weight, but cannot carry the 20% pin weight of a 5W type RV.  If you went for a travel trailer [or some low-deck utility trailer], a 2500 could do a lot more.  Assuming you will want something larger and heavier for living, you probably want a 3500 with a diesel power plant.

Frankly, though, for your needs I would consider having the trailer professionally moved and getting a nice but economical sedan or SUV for an everyday driver. Professional RV movers seem expensive until you price out the cost of a big truck and the travel expenses for only 4 days per year of need.

3-4 years old is not at all old. Neither is 10-12 years, if it has had decent care.  Leaks are not particularly age related. All the seams on an RV flex a lot, both during travel and through temperature expansion & contraction. The many caulked seams need to be inspected annually and touch up as needed.

It also seems reasonable to get a lite model. what are the main differences that allow the model to be less weight? We are just trying to consider all options.

kdbgoat

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #6 on: January 23, 2018, 02:32:30 PM »
Many things in an RV can be skimped on to lighten it up. Things like the frame, "superstructure", roof thickness, floor thickness, cabinets and furniture that are constructed lighter, etc. For weekenders, that may not be an issue. For fulltimers, the lighter weight stuff probably won't hold up over time.
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Lou Schneider

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #7 on: January 23, 2018, 02:39:58 PM »
Also interested in learning more about the option of having someone else tow the 5th wheel. I did not even know that existed.

New trailers are individually towed from the factories in the Elkhart, IN area to dealers all around the country by independent contractors working for transport companies.  Usually they return empty after delivering the trailer and they love getting another assignment while they're in an area to increase their revenue before deadheading back.

Do a Google search for "RV transporters" and you'll come up with several companies that operate nationwide.  Horizon, Indiana and Classic Transport are the largest haulers and they'll give you an idea of how much it will cost to have them move your 5th wheel from place to place.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2018, 02:53:41 PM by Lou Schneider »

donn

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #8 on: January 23, 2018, 02:56:40 PM »
Benne,
As far as paying someone to tow.  Personally I think thats a bad idea.  It could mean doing without your home for from a few days to a week or more everytime you move.  Then your relying on someone else to get it from where you were to where you want to go.  I think it would be better to simply have your SO follow you in a small car.  That way you have two vehicles, onw for each.
If your really interested, send me a private mesage with your email address and I would be glad to tell you about my setup.

SeilerBird

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #9 on: January 23, 2018, 03:19:58 PM »
I would be interested in seeing what you have available. Appreciate the reply! Also interested in learning more about the option of having someone else tow the 5th wheel. I did not even know that existed.
I bought a 5er last March and it was about 50 miles away. I don't own a truck and I am not going to get one. So I looked in Craigslist and found an ad for RV movers. He had a beast of a pickup truck and hauled it without incident for $250. Without the service I would have had to ask forum members for help. Turns out one forum member (rene) would have moved it for me for the price of gas. So if you go that route post a thread here mentioning the town you are in and where you want to do. Here is an ad like the one I answered:

https://orlando.craigslist.org/aos/d/island-towing-servicedot-mc/6462624711.html
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Benne77

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2018, 04:51:37 PM »
Thank you all so much for the help so far. I also should add that we will need fifth wheel for approximately 3 to 5 years and then plan to sell to another person likely. Would a 2500 diesel work for that if we had a lightweight one a couple years old?

Also following up, does anyone know about the deals at the RV show if they are good deals?

donn

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #11 on: January 23, 2018, 05:08:49 PM »
Again, please forget a 2500 series truck.  Older GM products for instance had a 9200 GVWR and depending how they were configured could scale around 7500 pounds ready to go.  Thst means available pin weight around 1700 pounds.  Which translates into a fiver weight around 9000 pounds.  Again that means a fiver around 25 feet long.  If your going to live in it your fiver your going to want far more than that.  Heck, my 36 foot fiver scales loaded ready to travel at 13,500 pounds and has a pin weight right at 3500 pounds.  That pin weight is going to overload any 2500 series truck. 
Your going to want enough room for the two of you to be seperated for at least part of each day.  Your going to want a comfortable living room, a decent kitchen, a good bed, plenty of closet space, and a decent bath area.  Your not going to get that in a shory fiver.  Think about what your wants are, then start looking at floor plans that fit your want list.  You will quickly learn there is no magic bullet.  Comfort equals what your wants are, so consider carefully.

Benne77

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #12 on: January 23, 2018, 05:16:21 PM »
Again, please forget a 2500 series truck.  Older GM products for instance had a 9200 GVWR and depending how they were configured could scale around 7500 pounds ready to go.  Thst means available pin weight around 1700 pounds.  Which translates into a fiver weight around 9000 pounds.  Again that means a fiver around 25 feet long.  If your going to live in it your fiver your going to want far more than that.  Heck, my 36 foot fiver scales loaded ready to travel at 13,500 pounds and has a pin weight right at 3500 pounds.  That pin weight is going to overload any 2500 series truck. 
Your going to want enough room for the two of you to be seperated for at least part of each day.  Your going to want a comfortable living room, a decent kitchen, a good bed, plenty of closet space, and a decent bath area.  Your not going to get that in a shory fiver.  Think about what your wants are, then start looking at floor plans that fit your want list.  You will quickly learn there is no magic bullet.  Comfort equals what your wants are, so consider carefully.

Okay so it sounds like my best option is to get a bigger truck or a trailer. We are leaning against a trailer due to it having lower ceilings.

Benne77

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #13 on: January 23, 2018, 07:39:10 PM »
What is the general time frame for someone to move a camper? Would 2 weeks notice be enough time for someone to move a fifth wheel for me? Could I expect to have it moved in 1-2 days 3-400 miles?

SeilerBird

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #14 on: January 23, 2018, 07:49:16 PM »
What is the general time frame for someone to move a camper? Would 2 weeks notice be enough time for someone to move a fifth wheel for me? Could I expect to have it moved in 1-2 days 3-400 miles?
Most will be able to move on a moments notice. They don't have a long waiting list.
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Benne77

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #15 on: January 23, 2018, 07:52:42 PM »
Most will be able to move on a moments notice. They don't have a long waiting list.

Okay thank you. Sorry to be all over the place in this discussion, but just trying to consider all options available. Any thoughts on getting a 3500 work truck vs a standard 3500?

Old_Crow

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #16 on: January 24, 2018, 04:19:02 AM »
Okay thank you. Sorry to be all over the place in this discussion, but just trying to consider all options available. Any thoughts on getting a 3500 work truck vs a standard 3500?

The difference between a "work truck" and a standard truck is usually lack of chrome or fancy trim, not as many fancy options on the dash and less luxurious upholstery and carpeting.  Maybe a manual trans instead of an automatic. 
Just depends on how many creature comforts you need.  Some people just have to have the newest King Ranch edition, and some people can make do with an old beat up farm truck.
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Benne77

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #17 on: January 26, 2018, 09:43:28 PM »
Would a Chevy 3500 work truck be able to pull a gross vehicle weight of 10,400 pound fifth wheel?  Also what is an okay amount of miles to have on the truck. We plan to own for both for approximately 5years? I am currently thinking of buying truck around 100,000 miles and selling around 155-160k.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2018, 02:55:11 PM by Benne77 »

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #18 on: January 27, 2018, 03:46:06 PM »
Probably could pull it, though you didn't mention what the truck configuration is (cab, SRW vs dual, engine, etc). And most all 3500's ought to be able to carry the pin weight of a 10,400 lb 5W as well.
Gary
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Benne77

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Re: Help choosing fifth wheel and new vs used, newbie questions
« Reply #19 on: January 31, 2018, 08:28:17 PM »
Probably could pull it, though you didn't mention what the truck configuration is (cab, SRW vs dual, engine, etc). And most all 3500's ought to be able to carry the pin weight of a 10,400 lb 5W as well.

Would this truck be able to pull it: 2014 Chevrolet 3500HD LT 4WD
Engine  6.0l V8 OHV 16V FFV
I believe it is a crew cab. Is not dual tires in the back. We will be traveling with the 5th wheel 4x/year approximately 200-400 miles at at a time.

Something like this truck: https://www.carsoup.com/details/Used/Chevrolet/3500/Pickup-Trucks/2014/1GC4K0CG2EF177657-36462
« Last Edit: January 31, 2018, 08:32:46 PM by Benne77 »

 

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