New to all of this RV stuff

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New member
Feb 3, 2007
Pasadena, MD

I'm new to all of this RV stuff and have been reading a bit on this forum lately trying to figure things out.

Hoping to get a used Class A or Class C this summer.

I do quite a bit of primitive camping during the warmer three seasons at several offroad parks where I take my Jeep.  Looking to get things comfortable enough that my wife will join me on my weekend outings.  I am also not opposed to a comfortable bed, a warm meal, hot coffee, and some of the other comforts.  I think the biggest plus for me would be being able to take a shower after I have been lying in the mud repairing whatever vehicle we have managed to break on the trail that day.

With one exception, the parks I attend have no hookups for RV's, although they do allow them.  Space is a limitation at these places, though, so I have been talking a good bit with the park operators about the few RV's they have had in the past.  So, pretty much I am trying to figure out the compromise between too small to be comfortable and too big to fit where I need it to.

I would also need the ability to trailer tow my Jeep with whatever I get, or else the whole thing is pointless.  Total weight would be roughly 5,500 pounds.
You are probably going to want to stay under 30 feet and maybe even under 25, so space vs comfort tradeoffs are going to be pretty much made for you. I would suggest a diesel powered rig to tow your Jeep. if the budget permits. There are some nice Class C diesels in the 24-28 foot range (and of course larger too).  Check out some Bigfoot models HERE

If buying used, you may have a tough time finding a diesel in that size range.  Some gas powered rigs will do the job, but you will have to watch the weights and hitch ratings closely, since many of them will not be designed to haul that much load.

You can find nice gas-powered Class A's in the 28 foot range, if those will fit in the parks you are talking about. A Class A is usually well-equipped for extended stays without shore power.
Looking to get things comfortable enough that my wife will join me on my weekend outings.  I am also not opposed to a comfortable bed, a warm meal, hot coffee, and some of the other comforts.

Whatever you get, may I suggest that you be sure to include your wife in the decision making and purchasing process because she's got to LIKE it too.  Some wives will go along for the ride so to speak, while others take one trip and that's it because it's "his" not "ours."  Put another way, if the galley is the pits, don't expect your lady to want to cook that warm meal for you and if the bed is impossible to make, she's not going to want to make it either.  It's better to find something you both like within the parameters you outline.  Also, Gary's right about the Jeep, depending on what model you have and how much it weighs.  A Grand Cherokee weighs a whole lot more than a Wrangler.  When we had Class Cs we towed a Tracker and loved it.  But it sounds like you're a more serious offroader.

Good luck with this new adventure!

Thanks for the opinions.

My wife is actually what got us going in this direction.  Even after close to nine years of being married, we still enjoy spending time together.  She wants to go with me on the weekends, but has zero interest in sleeping in a tent.  She also thinks I am nuts for what I do with my Jeep and is scared to ride in it with me (honestly, I can't blame her). 

So, the plan is for her to go with me and enjoy the whole experience with me, with the exception of the ride on the trails.  She'll be much happier sleeping late and lounging around watching TV all day.  This'll give us both what we want and allow us to spend some more time together.

We'll be looking for an older unit at a max of about $15,000.  I know that takes away a lot of the choices of what I can have, but I am very patient when it comes to this sort of thing and am willing to wait for the right deal to come along.  Also, noticing that is seems that class A's seem to be much better equipped and in better shape in this price range, as opposed to class C's.

The size seems to be throwing me off a bit.  I start looking at models around 23', then notice that a couple more feet makes a difference in the way it is equipped.  When I get up to about 34' I realize that is way too big for my needs and start over again at the smaller units.  Currently thinking that something in the range of about 27' might be ideal, as long as the one RV park we'd use would allow that with an 18' trailer.  Still have a long way to go in the decision process, and I am in no hurry.

Biggest concern is with tow ratings.  Looking at used models on the net, and nobody ever lists this information.  Would really help me narrow down my search a bit if they did.
Welcome to the RV Forum. Please look around the forum,  join in on any of the on going discussions, start new discussions, or ask questions.
Biggest concern is with tow ratings.

Yeap, that's going to be a problem.  Smaller rigs, especially gas powered, simply aren't going to be equipped for towing that much weight. A 3000-4000 lb hitch capacity is pretty much standard in that range and the weight of the motorhome itself is likely to be getting near the GCWR limit (GCWR = max coach + trailer weight).

When looking at used rigs, check the weight ratings on new versions of the same coaches to give you an idea. Specs for new ones are usually available online. The weights mostly go up, so figure the older one will be same or less capable (lighter duty chassis). It's not foolproof, but it sometimes gives you a clue if nothing else is available.
I have a 1998 Allegro 25 foot Class A built on the Chevrolet P30 chassis with a 454 c.i. gas engine.  It has a 19,000 lb. GCWR and a 12,300 lb. GVWR which gives it a 6,700 lb. towing capacity.  However, the hitch is only rated at 5,000 lb. so you would still be limited to that wieght for towing.  I bought mine for $17,000 and it only had 7,500 miles on it, so there are rigs out there that will fit your needs and your price range.


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