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Rubywheels60

New member
Joined
Apr 15, 2019
Posts
1
Hi Folks..Hope this forum can help me through the million questions I have and advice i get.... I am looking at a

34 foot Class A Damon Frontier Flyer
Ford 460 gas With Banks power.  I plan to pull a trailer.one horse in it and some contents..max load 6000 lbs  probably Under... I know fuel mileage or KMS is bad no matter...But really like some help...I am told go V10...I am told  stay away from V10......Go  Chevy.... Go Ford...  I can Not afford a Diesel And Budget is under $15,000 Canadian..so looking older...  Any help would be appreciated,,,,Thank you..wanting a Home on wheels.....Wendy
 

Lou Schneider

Site Team
Joined
Mar 14, 2005
Posts
11,781
Hi Wendy, welcome to The RV Forum!

At $15000 you're looking at an older motorhome.  In this case, condition is everything.  Inspect the house carefully for signs of water leaks, roofs need regular maintenance and if water gets inside you can be facing lots of work and money to repair hidden damage.  The house is bouncing down the road all day long, so you have to make sure it stays intact.

Next, since you have a specific need, is to ensure the RV has the correct hitch and enough towing capacity to handle your 6,000 lb. horse trailer.  Many gas motorhomes have a 5,000 lb. maximum tow rating and you can't just replace the hitch receiver with a higher capacity one.  In many cases the frame rails have been extended by the motorhome builder and these have to be evaluated to see if they can handle a heavier trailer.

Along those same lines, look for a motorhome with a relatively short rear overhang.  A long overhang resulting in a wheelbase that's less than 50% of the motorhome's overall length can lead to handling problems on the highway, especially with a trailer in tow.  It creates a "crack the whip" effect at the rear bumper when you make a turn, where the rear of the RV and the trailer first move away from the turn, then continues around behind the motorhome.

As far as Ford vs. Chevy, both are good manufactures and their motorhome chassis each have their strengths and issues. All RVs will require repairs at some point, make sure you have some funds in reserve to cover them.

What year is the Damon you're looking at?  Somewhere around 1990, Ford and Chevy went from the older carburetor engines to fuel injection.  At the same time they went from 3 speed to 4 speed with overdrive automatic transmissions.  The newer engines and transmissions are more efficient and use less fuel.  It may not sound like much, but a 1 MPG difference in fuel consumption (i.e. 7 mpg vs 6 mpg) will give you close to 20% savings in your fuel costs.

I apologize for this lengthy reply, and I hope I haven't put you off.  Just ask more questions as they come up, there's lots of friendly people here ready to help you find what you need!
 

Isaac-1

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 3, 2016
Posts
5,855
Location
SW Louisiana
The vast majority of coaches you find in your budget range will be in poor condition, a few may be economically repairable, or even functional though in need of maintenance and repair.  The biggest issue you will likely run into is water intrusion resulting in wood rot, and neglect of ongoing maintenance.  Even coaches that at first glance appear to be well maintained often have hidden issues, so unless you find a hidden gem, being sold by someone that just wants it gone, then chances are the best you can hope for is to find something in your $15,000 CDN budget that is reasonable safe to move under its own power, but needs another $10,000+ worth of maintenance to truly be roadworthy.
 

SeilerBird

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 25, 2012
Posts
16,696
Location
St Cloud Florida USA
I agree with Isaac. If you can't afford a newer diesel then you should not be looking at an RV. In your price range all RVs are basically way past their prime. You would need at least $10k to make it functional. That would be for a set of tires, a roof recoating and all the other details. Old cheap RVs are not a bargain. They all need a lot of money or they would not be cheap.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Posts
76,118
Location
West Palm Beach, FL
Few, if any, gas-engine coaches will have tow capacity greater than 5000 lbs. For the vintage you will be looking at, 4000 is more likely. In other words, no horse trailer.

$15k Canadian is rock bottom, about USD $11k. All but a few of them will be in crappy condition, mechanically or cosmetically or both.

Nothing wrong with the V10 except that the original version tended to blow spark plugs out. By now, any that you buy will have been fixed or isn't going to have the problem. Unlikely to find a V10 in your budget range, though. You are probably looking at a Ford 460 or GM 454, both V8's.
 

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