preferred floor plan

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Dougie

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Apr 13, 2005
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I am looking for advice from experienced users of heavier fifth wheels.  I now have a 97 F-350 Power stroke that is in great shape and am looking for a fifth wheel in the 30 foot range.  My preference is Holiday Rambler, Alfa, Teton, Carriage or King of the Road. I am interested in learning of any known problems with this tow vehicle and which fifth wheel may be too much for this truck to tow through mountains.  I am not interested in a triple axle, so that removes the longer campers from consideration, but I am still concerned about overload of transmission (Auto) and engine.  I am also interested in knowing why a center kitchen is better or worse than the rear kitchen, both from the cooks perspective and any adverse impact on the living area.  Yes, I am in the market for a good used camper for extended road trips.  I could also use a navigator, if there is a sober non smoking lady (50-60) who wants to see our best scenery and Canada, am will be interested in traveling with other campers.

Doug
 

Jeannine

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Dougie said:
.  I am also interested in knowing why a center kitchen is better or worse than the rear kitchen, both from the cooks perspective and any adverse impact on the living area. 

I won't try to address the towing issues, but can talk about the kitchen.  I've had both rear and center kitchens.  With the rear kitchen, dishes bounce a lot and are more likely to break on rough roads. 

Jeannine
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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At our Silver Springs FL home
Just determine the GVWR and GCWR of your F350 and stay within the limits. It will do fine.  Just saying a "heavey 30 footer" doesn't mean much - ya gotta get the weights of the prospective trailer and measure it against the capacity of your tow vehicle.  If yo don't know what the numbers are or what the various acronyms (GVWR, GCWR, etc) mean, fell free to ask more questions here.
 

N Smock

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Long Branch, NJ
I am not interested in a triple axle, so that removes the longer campers from consideration, but I am still concerned about overload of transmission (Auto) and engine.  I am also interested in knowing why a center kitchen is better or worse than the rear kitchen, both from the cooks perspective and any adverse impact on the living area.

I have a rear kitichen model. Yes on rough roads the rear cabinet  can get tossed around. In my case we have storage next to the table midships over the axle, we store china plates there,  no problem thus far. I use rear storage cabinets for pots etc to help shift weight off the pin. With the rear kitchen we find more working counter space and that the kitchen area is off on it's own and not located in the middle of the living area where you need to look over the counter to see the TV. To each his own.

As far as the truck is concerned find from Ford the exact capacity for the truck transmission combo. Find out if it was purchased with a towing option  which would include a tranmission cooler. If not you should add the cooller and perhaps stiffer shocks if it did not have a tow package. After finding a prospetive trailer get the trailer weights and then ask here as Gary said folks will help guide you in the proper direction.


Nelson
 

Tom

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No mortal sin BigRed, assuming that you refer folks here where appropriate.
 

Bob Buchanan

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Philadelphia, PA
>> I am also interested in knowing why a center kitchen is better or worse than the rear kitchen, both from the cooks perspective and any adverse impact on the living area.
===
Am in a Class C now -- but when I drove a 5thW, I chose the rear kitchen. That worked well for me. I didn't like the idea of guests (or me) having to walk through my kitchen to get to my living area. It would be like asking guest to enter a home via the kitchen vs. the living room. Of course, I am a solo traveler and my paper plates ride very well anywhere in my rig.  :)

But my pet peeve in floor plan design are the center baths with exposed johns. Some are right out in the open just inside the door from either the kitchen or bedroom. I will never buy a rig that doesn't have the john behind a closed door where others can traverse the length of the rig on the other side of that door at any time.
 

PancakeBill

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In looking at many 5'ers we have determined we like the layout of the rear kitchen, and recently saw a front kitchen which we really liked.  Our situation right now is a 5er that will be mostly parked and lived in, towed short flat distances, so we may err a little on the heavy side. 

The motion at the rear is not something that occurred to me till it was brought up here.  Great point!  Makes a lot of sense, and I suppose the way to determine the validity is drive a rough road to destinationa nd immediatly have a beer.  If it foams you, it was a rough ride. 

 

Tom

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BillnRI said:
.....drive a rough road to destinationa nd immediatly have a beer. If it foams you, it was a rough ride.

Well, that's one for the quick-tips list.
 

pjs

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Aug 7, 2005
Posts
6
We live in a 38 ft. triple slide Teton, we have a rear kitchen, I have lots of cabinets and two pantrys. i have had a few dishes break. I now store my dishes on a dish rack for your cabinet. I also stick a pillow in with my glass ware, I haven't had any more breakage. I like the rear kitchen for this reason, I can cook and be out of my husbands way, while he watches tv. We use to have a Alpenlite, it had a side galley kitchen, it was 32ft. I didn't like cooking in it because I didn't have much counter space, and not many cabinets, I had to use the cabinet above the tv, which made it hard for my husband to watch tv. We had a 1996 Alpenlite, and we got the lemon you hear about, i was so glad to get the Teton, only minor problems with it. The Teton is truly a fulltime rv.
 

gypseygirl

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Jul 24, 2005
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I prefer the kitchen in the middle, mainly because I like the big window in the back of the rig.  It seems to open the unit  up more for me.  I like the Montana 3400 for their kitchen.  It has an island with a lot of storage and cabinet space.  :)  Sally
 

Bill_Frisbee

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Jul 2, 2005
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Guelph, Ontario
gypseygirl ...

we bought a Montana 3400 for precisely the same reason ... and because the grandkids can come in the door and go directly to the refrigerator without grinding dirt into the carpet!

Bill
 

w5blt

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Concord, Ca
Bill_Frisbee said:
gypseygirl ...

we bought a Montana 3400 for precisely the same reason ... and because the grandkids can come in the door and go directly to the refrigerator without grinding dirt into the carpet!

Bill

I'm seriously considering the 3400RL as well. One of the main reasons is that the wife likes to sleep in and I'm an early riser. I can grab a book or newspaper and move to the rear lounge, close the doors and give her a little peace and quiet. However, this thread has really made me think about the kitchen. It sounds reasonable that: A) most of the weight should be over the axel plus the dish thing. Hmm ... yep, sounds reasonable to me.
 

PancakeBill

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Benson - Tucson, AZ. West Yellowstone,MT
Take a look also at the Prowler Regal AX6, they have a couple real nice floorplans, including a front kitchen, rear bedroom.  The one I really like has a great rear sitting room that closes off.  These are in the 38' range.
 

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