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Author Topic: TT: Comparison advice  (Read 1861 times)

10beers

  • Posts: 3
TT: Comparison advice
« on: April 13, 2015, 12:50:56 AM »
Would like to ask for info/ opinions on three trailers on our short list. This will be our first TT.

Winnebago minnie 2015 2351 DKS
2015 Dutchmen Denali 2371 RB
2015 Keystone bullet/ passport 2200RB models w/ and w/o sink island.
We expect to use it roughly 30-45 days out of the year on both weekend trips and longer haul vacations.
Both only have a U dinette and we look to use it as a comfy lounge area between meals on rainy days. We like the slightly higher cargo capacities vs other comparable models. And the extra counter space is a huge plus for us.
Towing with a 2014 Tundra Crew Max.

Any info or advice would be greatly appreciated.

Frizlefrak

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  • Posts: 3575
  • El Paso, Texas
Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2015, 01:07:04 AM »
Assuming it's within the truck's capacity, buy the one with the floor plan you like best.
2014 Ram 2500 Cummins
2012 Palomino 30' TT

JerryP

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  • Posts: 72
Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #2 on: April 13, 2015, 08:52:12 AM »
Assuming it's within the truck's capacity, buy the one with the floor plan you like best.

What he said...
Jerry

"When you get to the fork in the road, take it.."

2014 Crossroads Elevation 3616
2013 F350 Powerstroke 4X4 SRW

Mopar1973Man

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  • Posts: 3496
  • Dodge Cummins Powered / Jayco Eagle Living
Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #3 on: April 13, 2015, 08:58:11 AM »
Assuming it's within the truck's capacity, buy the one with the floor plan you like best.

Totally agree. I highly suggest you pack up you family and go weight your current tow vehicle and see what your axle weight and total weight is. Then see if there is enough room for the tongue weight / pin weight plus figure it for the GVWR of the RV because you be surprise how fast you can throw weight into RV.
Mopar1973Man (AKA: Michael Nelson) located out in the state of Idaho with...
2002 Dodge Ram 2500 5.9L Cummins Turbo Diesel
2000 Jayco Eagle FBS 296
2013 BigTex 70TV Utility Trailer

Frizlefrak

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  • Posts: 3575
  • El Paso, Texas
Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #4 on: April 13, 2015, 12:33:07 PM »
Yeah, it's so important to get a floor plan that matches your lifestyle.  Took us 3 RV's to learn this, but the education the first two gave us was priceless.  There's only two of us, but we like to stretch out.  Wanted a TT instead of a fiver so we could use the bed of the truck.  Wanted space, no bunks.  We must have looked at 50 + trailers....and then we found THE ONE.  30' long, huuuuuge bathroom, outdoor kitchen, large slide, power everything.  It followed us home, and three years later, still in love with it.  Of course, 2 years in we knew we needed a better truck....ours was within spec, but not much to spare.  Studied our options, and decided a new Ram 2500 Cummins was just the ticket.

So do this;

Make three lists.

1.  What the RV MUST have.
2.  What the RV CANNOT have.
3.  What would be nice to have.

Stick to lists 1 & 2 strictly.  If you break those and "settle" for something that isn't right, you won't be happy down the road.  Get as much of list 3 as your budget and RV availability allow.

Happy Shopping!   :)
2014 Ram 2500 Cummins
2012 Palomino 30' TT

10beers

  • Posts: 3
Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #5 on: April 13, 2015, 02:07:40 PM »
Thanks for the responses guys. Weight wise we used GCWR to remove those nice to have trailers that would put us over as well as the Trailers whose "dry tongue weights" that were within 70% of our tow vehicle rating to ensure we didn't get close to max.

The trailers all meet our minimum requirements and some have our nice to haves. Was hoping for help/ feedback as to if one had better components, craftsmanship , etc vs the other.

I've searched on here to look at feedback on the manufacturers and saw issues posts for all of them in some shape or form. Looking to see if one has less issues, better fit and finish, construction.

Again thanks for the help. 

Frizlefrak

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  • Posts: 3575
  • El Paso, Texas
Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #6 on: April 13, 2015, 05:39:06 PM »
T
The trailers all meet our minimum requirements and some have our nice to haves. Was hoping for help/ feedback as to if one had better components, craftsmanship , etc vs the other.

Unlikely.

Travel trailers are basically boxes on wheels filled with furniture, plumbing, and appliances.  The axles, furniture, plumbing and appliances are all made by a small handful of manufacturers.....all the trailer manufacturer really does is assemble all the parts made by other companies.  The dirty secret in the RV industry is that quality control across the board.....well, it sucks.  There will be differences in quality between one price point or another, but it's all luck of the draw within a price point.  None of them are great.  99.99% of them will have an issue here or there right off the lot. The dealer will usually fix it under warranty for the first year or so, so that's a good time to work the bugs out.  After that, the best thing to do is to learn to fix the small stuff that will happen down the road.  Most of us work on our own rigs....

FWIW....my 2012 Palomino that I bought new had one major issue under warranty, dealer fixed it.  Beyond that, I've had 2 things go wrong that I fixed myself.....an inline fuse holder for the power tongue jack got left open, got wet, and corroded.  $4 and 30 minute fix.  Had to replace the male end of the power cord....$25, 1 hour of my time.  You get the picture.

All that said, buy the one the wife likes best.  Happy wife, happy life.  :)
2014 Ram 2500 Cummins
2012 Palomino 30' TT

RVRAC

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  • Posts: 1075
Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #7 on: April 13, 2015, 11:00:17 PM »
Winnebago has a better reputation but all will have some issues.  It's the nature of the beast.
2017 Leprechaun 311 FS
Toad: 2016 Jeep Patriot
American Dolly
Home: WI
Snowbird 6 months/yr.

steveblonde

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Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #8 on: April 14, 2015, 08:46:56 AM »
the keystone and dutchmen are the same company you may want to check out the dutchman forum

http://www.dutchmenowners.org

and winnebago forum

http://www.irv2.com/

there is usually more negatives than positives on those sites because they turn into bitch fests but useful anyway - i have a dutchman/keystone and im relatively happy with the quality not 100% but its okay  and remember pick the one the wife likes best - that way if something goes wrong you can blame her lol just kidding pick the one you both like best really they are pretty much all made the same untill you get into the mega$$$$$ units
2015 Voltage 3305 Toy Hauler - loaded
2017 Ford Escape my Daily driver - first Ford in 25 yrs
2017 Black on Black F350 Diesel Dually loaded (First Ford Truck after 17 GMs) 5200lbs cargo/weight capacity named Kong


" If you're not living on the edge you're taking up too much space"
From Canada Eh?

schrederman

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  • Posts: 133
Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2015, 10:57:15 AM »
Well, sorry... but Frizlefrak said that quality control, actually the lack thereof, was a dirty little secret... It's not a secret at all... :o Seriously, some brands may seem to be of better quality than others. It's my opinion that they are just a little better at hiding the cheap materials and crappy workmanship underneath. I sound jaded, and I guess I am. I spend about half as much time fiddling with mine as I do camping in it... but it's getting better. I'm finally to the point where most of the manufacturing crap is fixed... by me. Now I have a population explosion in the grandchild ranks, and need to upgrade. That means I'll have to start all over rebuilding what should have been built correctly in the first place. But, hey... I'm an experienced mechanic, and now know a LOT more about RVs, so it should go a little quicker.

Well, I said all that so I could say this.... The other guys are right... find a floor plan that fits you, then imagine being stuck inside it for a week. Then find a floor plan that really fits you. Be prepared to regularly jump up and down on the dealers desk, or do a lot of fixing of stuff that wasn't done right from the beginning... Why is this guy an RVer, you may ask... The truth is it's really not that bad, and when everything's working and you're out in a nice campsite... it's worth it.

Try to find one that was built on Wednesday or Thursday... :D
Jack and Dee Dee in Weatherford, Tx
2014 Ram 2500 Crew Cab 4X4 Cummins TD
2016 Jayco White Hawk 28DSBH travel trailer

heckufaguy

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  • Posts: 36
Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #10 on: April 19, 2015, 06:14:21 AM »
I just spent my Saturday in my brand new gulfstream camper fixing trim, screws that never met their mark, excess glue. Stuff that's very minor, yet... could have been fixed of never done wrong with ANY type of quality control at Gulfstream.
It hasn't jaded me on the brand, our 2013 was similar. But it's got a great floor plan, tows great, has floors that never show wear (we have big dogs) and all in all is very solidly built.  The minor stuff is annoying, but I avoid contacting the dealer unless it's something big, or something I need to start a paper trail on. So far I've run in to none of these issues.


Frizlefrak

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  • Posts: 3575
  • El Paso, Texas
Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #11 on: April 19, 2015, 05:47:52 PM »
I'm one of the lucky ones actually....we bought our Palomino TT (the dreaded Forest River) new in 2012.  It kept popping fuses on the furnace.  Dealership fixed it under warranty (on the second try)....was a wiring harness that had a screw threw it.  They had to replace the entire harness as it had melted (yikes!), but accomplished that in a week and a half.  Not too bad.

That was the only glaring issue from the factory.  Since then, in three years, I've fixed 4 things in my driveway;

1.  Tongue jack stopped working.  Corroded inline fuse and holder.  Got moisture in it...was left open.  Not sure if I did that or the factory did...but in either event, $4 and 30 minutes to fix.

2.  Male end of power cord.  Lost A/C power completely.  $25 and an hour to fix.

3.  Support on seat of dinette came loose.  Screw holes too big for screw...or you could say stripped out.  Aluminum framed trailer.  I drilled them out and used a bolt and a locknut.  It won't be coming loose again.  2 hours of my time, used hardware I had laying around so zero cost.

4.  Replaced 2 vent caps.  Desert Sun just wears them down and makes them brittle here....not really a defect in the trailer.

That's pretty much it in 3 years.  I really can't complain.  The enjoyment we get from this rig far outweighs the demerits.  That said, find a floor plan you like.  Let me reiterate what Schrederman said....pretend it's been raining for a solid week and you're stuck inside.  Ensure you find a rig that will keep you sane during that time.  If anything about the rig annoys you even slightly during prime conditions, it will drive you bonkers when you're cooped up in it.

2014 Ram 2500 Cummins
2012 Palomino 30' TT

Old Blevins

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  • Posts: 506
Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #12 on: April 19, 2015, 07:40:07 PM »
I was lucky enough to find what I was looking for used and in very good condition.  The previous owner had pretty much ironed out the problems in it.  And I didn't eat a bunch of depreciation as I drove away with it.  That's an option you might consider.  As you'ver probably gathered, with RVs, new doesn't mean problem-free.
Jim
------------------------------------
2006 Silverado SRW 1-Ton 4WD Diesel
2006 Arctic Fox 29V
1985 Brawley 2-Horse Straight-Load Trailer

Mopar1973Man

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  • Posts: 3496
  • Dodge Cummins Powered / Jayco Eagle Living
Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #13 on: April 22, 2015, 07:48:31 PM »
I was lucky enough to find what I was looking for used and in very good condition.  The previous owner had pretty much ironed out the problems in it.  And I didn't eat a bunch of depreciation as I drove away with it.  That's an option you might consider.  As you'ver probably gathered, with RVs, new doesn't mean problem-free.

Same here... I bought a 10 year old trailer and it was in excellent condition. I've only had a few little issue like a water leak (bad hose clamp) and tires and brakes that's it. The rest of the time I've been modifying the RV to my standards. Since I bought it use there is no warranty or anything to worry about so start modifying to taste now.  ;)
Mopar1973Man (AKA: Michael Nelson) located out in the state of Idaho with...
2002 Dodge Ram 2500 5.9L Cummins Turbo Diesel
2000 Jayco Eagle FBS 296
2013 BigTex 70TV Utility Trailer

10beers

  • Posts: 3
Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #14 on: April 22, 2015, 10:43:55 PM »
Thanks for the additional comments guys. Yeah not too worried about fixing/ tinkering with the small stuff as that's to be expected from what I've read just about everywhere. Not sure which we are going to go with now. Wife saw a small bunk house so now we are on to comparing the above floor plans to small bunk houses with and without a couch. Glad we've got the spring show coming up to do some more comparison shopping.

heckufaguy

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  • Posts: 36
Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #15 on: April 24, 2015, 06:27:08 AM »
Thanks for the additional comments guys. Yeah not too worried about fixing/ tinkering with the small stuff as that's to be expected from what I've read just about everywhere. Not sure which we are going to go with now. Wife saw a small bunk house so now we are on to comparing the above floor plans to small bunk houses with and without a couch. Glad we've got the spring show coming up to do some more comparison shopping.

Keep in mind, every camper here is a favorite. But we just purchased a 259BH from Gulfstream. Affordable, tons of space. Not small, but not a 32 footer either. It's available in a few of their product lines, we bought the Ameri-lite line.

Happy hunting!

deeperblue

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  • Posts: 24
Re: TT: Comparison advice
« Reply #16 on: April 25, 2015, 12:38:35 PM »
I rented Keystone passport trailer last year, and I was very disappointed with its quality.

On our first day at the RV site, the slideout completely failed to open up. The trailer uses a motor to pull cables to run t he slideout in/out, and the motor is attached to sidewall (between slideout top and trailer ceiling). The motor got completely detached from the sideall so the slideout will not operate at all!

And when it rained (and the rain was just moderate at most), it leaked in the front bedroom and the real bunkbed!

See the pictures.
« Last Edit: April 25, 2015, 12:46:18 PM by deeperblue »

 

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