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Author Topic: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel  (Read 748 times)

C8Z06

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Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« on: December 23, 2019, 08:29:36 PM »
I have been looking at RVís for a few weeks now and I keep flipping back and forth between a motorized or non-motorized RV. Hoping I can explain my situation and my uses for the RV and you guys can help me make a choice thatís right for me and my family.

We are a family of four with a 3 year old and 1.5 yr old. I have my own business and have the flexibility to work on the road or take time off whenever I want. My wife is a dentist but currently a stay at home mom that works a couple times a month if she chooses to. So we have the flexibility to travel for a few days or a few months.

One of my hobbies is HPDE Track days with my Ariel Atom race car. So I was originally looking at 5th wheel toy haulers and really like the Keystone Fuzion 427. I measure the garage with the sales agent and a 13í garage would fit my 1300lb race car so I can use it for track weekends every other month or so. Another reason I was looking at a toy hauler is that my Son loves to drive golf carts and honestly when we take a camping trip, I feel like I would need a toy, be it a side by side or golf cart.

We are blessed with a lot of really close friends and a large extended family with kids all around the same ages. So we do plan on camping with friends and family once or twice a year so the space a 5th wheel has would be great for that. On the other hand, do I really want to spend $70k on a new truck and $70k on a 5th wheel for the couple times a year? Then once I combine the depreciation on both, I think I will be in the hole a lot more than just buying a motorized coach albeit smaller on the inside. If I do get a motorized RV then I would have to tow a trailer behind it with the toys or race car.

Hopefully I can take the family on a few road trips, hoping to go to the Grand Canyon and Yellowstone. I know that Yellowstone has some size restrictions so maybe a motorized RV might be a better choice in those cases? Also, Iím hoping to rent out the RV when Iím not using it so Iím not sure which kind would rent better/faster.

Iím hoping to hear from those of you who have experience with both and what you think might be a better option for me. My budget is $150k total.

donn

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Re: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« Reply #1 on: December 23, 2019, 08:58:03 PM »
Think used as a first timer and you can get a decent dually truck and a relatively nice fiver and have 70K left over to save toward the next toy.  Look, RVing is not cheap.  It is a hobby that employs depreciating assets.  Combining it with your other hobbies makes it worth while for many folks.  Others, not so much.
You want to midigate your depreciation losses as much as possible, so buy used in the 5 to 7 year old range, keep it maintained, use and enjoy the heck out of it.  When your ready and have the cash, move on to another used one.

Isaac-1

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Re: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« Reply #2 on: December 23, 2019, 09:26:34 PM »
Let me start by saying most of us here would never consider renting out our RV's there is just way too much that can be broken in seconds by a renter that does not know what they are doing that could cost thousands of dollars to repair, if it were repairable at all, and way too many horror stories of it happening to people that did rent or loan out their RV's.  In other words the chances of an RV coming back in one piece after being rented out is somewhere on par with renting a Ferrari out to a teenager on prom night.

If you think I am exaggerating watch this youtube video posted a day or two ago about this couples first time towing their new to them 5th wheel.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7XPcug7I09k

As to what you should buy it sounds like you need a toy hauler of some type, though perhaps a motorhome toy hauler might work for you depending on garage size.  I know there are some Super C toy haulers out there, but not sure the exact models, there were also some class A toy haulers built between about 2005-2009 by a couple of companies based on a couple of chassis that were discontinued during the great recession, such as the Safari Simba FD built on the Freightliner FRED chassis with rear lift see https://library.rvusa.com/brochure/2007_SimbaFD.pdf  or the Newmar All-Star built on the Spartan mid engine diesel chassis https://newmar.imgix.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/27073517/2008-all-star-mid-diesel.pdf

ps the 2009 Damon Outlaw had a 12 ft long garage https://library.rvusa.com/brochure/Damon2009outlaw.pdf  (as chance has it there is one of these 3808 models listed on rv trader right now for $59,997 https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/2009-Damon-Outlaw-3808-5010141707)
« Last Edit: December 23, 2019, 09:35:00 PM by Isaac-1 »
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C8Z06

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Re: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« Reply #3 on: December 24, 2019, 07:54:57 AM »
Think used as a first timer and you can get a decent dually truck and a relatively nice fiver and have 70K left over to save toward the next toy.  Look, RVing is not cheap.  It is a hobby that employs depreciating assets.  Combining it with your other hobbies makes it worth while for many folks.  Others, not so much.
You want to midigate your depreciation losses as much as possible, so buy used in the 5 to 7 year old range, keep it maintained, use and enjoy the heck out of it.  When your ready and have the cash, move on to another used one.

Thatís the problem, I was originally looking at a used fifth wheel for around $40k then I went and saw some new ones which could be had for $70k and they had Wifi and LTE connectivity and would allow me to monitor and control the RV while itís parked in storage. I really like that feature.

C8Z06

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Re: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« Reply #4 on: December 24, 2019, 07:58:34 AM »
Let me start by saying most of us here would never consider renting out our RV's there is just way too much that can be broken in seconds by a renter that does not know what they are doing that could cost thousands of dollars to repair, if it were repairable at all, and way too many horror stories of it happening to people that did rent or loan out their RV's.  In other words the chances of an RV coming back in one piece after being rented out is somewhere on par with renting a Ferrari out to a teenager on prom night.

If you think I am exaggerating watch this youtube video posted a day or two ago about this couples first time towing their new to them 5th wheel.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7XPcug7I09k

As to what you should buy it sounds like you need a toy hauler of some type, though perhaps a motorhome toy hauler might work for you depending on garage size.  I know there are some Super C toy haulers out there, but not sure the exact models, there were also some class A toy haulers built between about 2005-2009 by a couple of companies based on a couple of chassis that were discontinued during the great recession, such as the Safari Simba FD built on the Freightliner FRED chassis with rear lift see https://library.rvusa.com/brochure/2007_SimbaFD.pdf  or the Newmar All-Star built on the Spartan mid engine diesel chassis https://newmar.imgix.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/27073517/2008-all-star-mid-diesel.pdf

ps the 2009 Damon Outlaw had a 12 ft long garage https://library.rvusa.com/brochure/Damon2009outlaw.pdf  (as chance has it there is one of these 3808 models listed on rv trader right now for $59,997 https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/2009-Damon-Outlaw-3808-5010141707)

Would it be too difficult to pull a 16ft enclosed trailer behind a Class A or C? I couldnít find a motorized toy hauler that would fit the race car. The garage would need to be at least 13í to fit the car.

HappyWanderer

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Re: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« Reply #5 on: December 24, 2019, 08:08:26 AM »
Thatís the problem, I was originally looking at a used fifth wheel for around $40k then I went and saw some new ones which could be had for $70k and they had Wifi and LTE connectivity and would allow me to monitor and control the RV while itís parked in storage. I really like that feature.

I twitch thinking about people who canít put down their gadgets and gizmos long enough to explore this wonderful country of ours and enjoy the great outdoors. Now we need WiFi and cell service for our campers when theyíre not occupied?
WARNING: This post may contain a chemical known to the State of California to cause cancer, or birth defects or other reproductive harm.

C8Z06

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Re: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« Reply #6 on: December 24, 2019, 08:45:58 AM »
I twitch thinking about people who canít put down their gadgets and gizmos long enough to explore this wonderful country of ours and enjoy the great outdoors. Now we need WiFi and cell service for our campers when theyíre not occupied?

Itís more about maintenence. Starting the generator up every now and then, running the ACís, moving the slides. Iíve owned boats long enough to know that when things sit without use, they break.

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« Reply #7 on: December 24, 2019, 09:36:35 AM »
With your list of wants, you are pretty much narrowing the field down to a new toyhauler 5W and large truck or a late model diesel coach with a trailer.. Whether your wants and needs are pie-in-the-sky or realistic is tough for any of us to judge.  It's pretty clear you aren't into "camping" - you want to take your home facilities and lifestyle on the road with you. Nothing wrong with that, but your $140k estimate is perhaps on the light side for that.

I don't see the wifi etc is a big hurdle - most any rig could be retrofitted with that. Whether the OEM or the retrofit version could do all the things you expect is is a different question - don't assume.

How often do you think you would actually use the rig? Every other month isn't much entertainment for that size of expenditure.  Or even 1-2x per month.  The used market is littered with rigs that folks bought in a fit of enthusiasm, only to realize after a year or two that its just a waste, sitting around depreciating and deteriorating. Yes, they require a lot of TLC, both time & $$.
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

Kevin Means

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Re: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« Reply #8 on: December 24, 2019, 12:55:55 PM »
Would it be too difficult to pull a 16ft enclosed trailer behind a Class A or C? I couldnít find a motorized toy hauler that would fit the race car. The garage would need to be at least 13í to fit the car.
Several Class A diesel motorhomes are capable of pulling an enclosed trailer with a car, but with the exception of some "Super Cs"  you can pretty much rule out any standard Class Cs. They usually have a max towing capacity of 5000 lbs, sometimes less. And you might have to reduce that even further, depending on how heavily you load the RV.

Kev
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Towing a Jeep Rubicon Unlimited LJ
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Lakeside, California

C8Z06

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Re: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« Reply #9 on: December 24, 2019, 01:01:31 PM »
With your list of wants, you are pretty much narrowing the field down to a new toyhauler 5W and large truck or a late model diesel coach with a trailer.. Whether your wants and needs are pie-in-the-sky or realistic is tough for any of us to judge.  It's pretty clear you aren't into "camping" - you want to take your home facilities and lifestyle on the road with you. Nothing wrong with that, but your $140k estimate is perhaps on the light side for that.

I don't see the wifi etc is a big hurdle - most any rig could be retrofitted with that. Whether the OEM or the retrofit version could do all the things you expect is is a different question - don't assume.

How often do you think you would actually use the rig? Every other month isn't much entertainment for that size of expenditure.  Or even 1-2x per month.  The used market is littered with rigs that folks bought in a fit of enthusiasm, only to realize after a year or two that its just a waste, sitting around depreciating and deteriorating. Yes, they require a lot of TLC, both time & $$.

We would probably use it a total of 45-60 days a year.

Lou Schneider

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Re: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« Reply #10 on: December 24, 2019, 01:06:53 PM »
Itís more about maintenence. Starting the generator up every now and then, running the ACís, moving the slides. Iíve owned boats long enough to know that when things sit without use, they break.

I'd rather be on-site and use my senses to detect problems that won't show up on a remote readout instead of pushing a remote button and assuming everything's OK.  Things like a fuel leak, mice nests or squirrel nut stashes on the engine that are getting hot, noisy bearings or other problems.

That's how I maintained mountaintop radio transmitters.  Yes, it would have been easier just to push the button in the office instead of climbing the mountain for routine tests but that's not enough to be sure everything's OK at the far end.

Hopefully I can take the family on a few road trips, hoping to go to the Grand Canyon and Yellowstone. I know that Yellowstone has some size restrictions so maybe a motorized RV might be a better choice in those cases?

How are you going to take the family sightseeing within the park?  With a towable you can leave the house at the campground and use the truck for sightseeing.

If you have a motorhome and you're towing a trailer with your toys inside, you can't also tow a car so you have to break camp and take the motorhome on sightseeing trips.  If you're driving a vehicle as big as a tour bus, you're limited to only going to the places a tour bus can go.

Tow a car behind the motorhome and you have to leave your other toys at home.
« Last Edit: December 24, 2019, 01:16:05 PM by Lou Schneider »

Pugapooh

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Re: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« Reply #11 on: December 24, 2019, 05:01:31 PM »
30K more for some electronics?  Wow.

Bear in mind.  A new unit may spend a lot of time at the dealers for getting the kinks fixed.

How much will storage cost every month?  Did you factor in campground costs?
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Charley67

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Re: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« Reply #12 on: December 24, 2019, 05:27:57 PM »
I think your best experience might be a gently used 5th wheel toy hauler. If you determine you donít like the camping thing after all, you most likely wonít take as a big a hit financially. Also, you will likely be more pleased with the living space. Itís an expensive route anyway you go, but some of us like it anyway.

C8Z06

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Re: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« Reply #13 on: December 25, 2019, 11:45:12 AM »
I'd rather be on-site and use my senses to detect problems that won't show up on a remote readout instead of pushing a remote button and assuming everything's OK.  Things like a fuel leak, mice nests or squirrel nut stashes on the engine that are getting hot, noisy bearings or other problems.

That's how I maintained mountaintop radio transmitters.  Yes, it would have been easier just to push the button in the office instead of climbing the mountain for routine tests but that's not enough to be sure everything's OK at the far end.

How are you going to take the family sightseeing within the park?  With a towable you can leave the house at the campground and use the truck for sightseeing.

If you have a motorhome and you're towing a trailer with your toys inside, you can't also tow a car so you have to break camp and take the motorhome on sightseeing trips.  If you're driving a vehicle as big as a tour bus, you're limited to only going to the places a tour bus can go.

Tow a car behind the motorhome and you have to leave your other toys at home.

You make a good point, it would either be toys or vehicle. Iím going with a 5th wheel now.

C8Z06

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Re: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« Reply #14 on: December 25, 2019, 11:47:50 AM »
I think your best experience might be a gently used 5th wheel toy hauler. If you determine you donít like the camping thing after all, you most likely wonít take as a big a hit financially. Also, you will likely be more pleased with the living space. Itís an expensive route anyway you go, but some of us like it anyway.

Yes, thatís what Iím looking for now. So far Iíve seen some good options that are $20-30k below new prices. I would prefer to buy from a private seller vs a dealer.

C8Z06

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Re: Help me choose 5th Wheel or Class A/C Diesel
« Reply #15 on: December 25, 2019, 11:50:46 AM »
30K more for some electronics?  Wow.

Bear in mind.  A new unit may spend a lot of time at the dealers for getting the kinks fixed.

How much will storage cost every month?  Did you factor in campground costs?

My friend has a warehouse that I can park my trailer next to and have a camera on it. Otherwise, I do have plenty of properties I can keep it on(One of my businesses is real estate development).