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RVing message boards => Newcomers' Corner => Topic started by: LMM2810 on December 29, 2019, 09:24:10 AM

Title: Seeking Advice on First Travel Trailer
Post by: LMM2810 on December 29, 2019, 09:24:10 AM
My husband and I are looking to purchase our first travel trailer. We will use mostly for weekend recreation, hiking and camping, but still want something that is good quality and durable for longer trips. We have been looking at two travel trailers. The first is the 2020 Coleman Lantern LT 202 RD the second is the Heartland Prowler 180RB. The main difference I can see is the construction (wood vs. aluminum). What would you recommend between those two? I added specs below for both.

Thanks for the help!!
Title: Re: Seeking Advice on First Travel Trailer
Post by: 1blue78 on December 29, 2019, 09:46:47 AM
I like the larger holding capacity for fresh water in the Coleman.  The power jacks are nice too - I see they are options on the Prowler.  Depending on the camping you are planning you may want look into upgrading the propane tanks to 30# tanks. 
Title: Re: Seeking Advice on First Travel Trailer
Post by: Gary RV_Wizard on December 29, 2019, 10:00:02 AM
All other things being equal (rarely the case!), I'd choose a metal frame over wood. If ever get a water leak in the sidewalls, there will be no rot or mold in the framing itself. But the wallboard and flooring is still going to be damaged, so the metal frame is only one factor to consider.

Low-end and smaller travel trailers are not much different overall unless there is a big difference in the price range. An Airstream 20 footer is in a different class than either of these, but price competition drives similarly priced models to much the same level of quality and construction methods. Focus on the space and amenities that will suit your needs, not the brand or size.

I would strongly consider buying used; there are usually plenty of lightly used, pre-owned RVs available because people buy them on impulse and then discover it was just a passing fancy.   RVs depreciate very rapidly, so you can save thousands on a late model used RV.  Forget your used car buyer bias - an RV is much more like a house than a car. Pre-owned is common-place and condition is much more important than the year it was built.
Title: Re: Seeking Advice on First Travel Trailer
Post by: bman2015 on December 29, 2019, 10:02:03 AM
My wife and I just bought a 2019 Keystone Passport 2010RB and really think it was made just for that purpose.  Weekends and or longer trips if needed.
Title: Re: Seeking Advice on First Travel Trailer
Post by: SpencerPJ on December 29, 2019, 10:28:10 AM
I agree with above, personally I'd lean towards the Coleman.  That said, I also would find one 3-5 years old, gently used.  They are rather simple to find, and will save you a bunch.  Often times the new ones have issues that need resolved with warranty, and Rv Dealers are nothing like car Dealers when it comes to that.
Title: Re: Seeking Advice on First Travel Trailer
Post by: scottydl on December 29, 2019, 10:28:54 AM
Whatever you decide, shop new if you want (more access to rigs and floorplans to check out) and then buy used after you find something similar. RV's depreciate a LOT in their first few years, and you'll take a big loss if you decide to change rigs or not continue with this type of recreation. We have checklists in our forum library (see link near the top of the page) for checklists on what to check out, etc. Also don't be in a hurry to buy! The more you learn up front = you'll be a more informed buyer, which will help in every aspect of the process.
Title: Re: Seeking Advice on First Travel Trailer
Post by: donn on December 29, 2019, 12:52:16 PM
I would recomend againdt both.
Being a first time buyer its a huge mistake to buy new.  Too many things can go wrong.  You hate RVing, you bought the wrong type of RV.  The floorplan just does not suit you like you thought.  You get the idea?  Add in the huge depreciation hit you will take when you decide to sell I just dont see this as a good idea.
Look at used trailers in the size you think you want.  Dont forget towing capacity of your tow vehicle.  Do you really have sufficient to  tow a fully loaded trailer?
A little research will yeild that most first time RVers trade or quit within 2 years.  If you buy new eight out of the box that could mean you loose 50% of your investment within that time.  Just not ecomonic sense.
Title: Re: Seeking Advice on First Travel Trailer
Post by: Conesus1 on December 29, 2019, 01:03:31 PM
As Gary has stated, look used to start with.
When we bought our first unit it was used and I'm glad we did it that way.
You have no idea on what you actually want and or need.
Buying something for a much less of a cost vs. new and taking some time with it you'll learn things.
Do you actually like camping< For me I was worried about the wife actually making the time and enjoying these type weekends.
Then what you want to a layout, each person has their own likes and not really needed things. Buying used and what you think you wanted vs what you learn with time can be totally different< ours was 180 degrees from where we started.

Its just new units lose some serious value in the first 2-3 years. If your not happy, that's a big loss!
Least thats my opinion!