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Old 07-09-2010, 09:29 PM   #141
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Next to the microwave on the road, I most value this:
Iwatani Portable Gas Stove
It stores in a little carrying case and weighs practically nothing. The propane is relatively cheap and each can lasts forever.
We do have a portable burner like that, but a different brand. In fact we have 3! We use them as on-the-table burners when serving certain dishes like fondue or table grills. They are more convenient than portable electric burners with their attached cords.

I guess I do not really need to have with the RV a more heavy-duty burner that runs off the RV propane tank. I just wanted an excuse to customize my new toy.


About the Sprinter-based RVs, I looked at the one that R-i-T had, out of curiosity, and found that it was different than the ones that I had seen. So, it appears that there might be more than one size or model of the Sprinter.

The Great West RV picture is below. Its spec said 8500-lb GVWR.



The ones that I was more familiar with looked like the following picture. They tend to be bigger, and most often have a slide. The one in the picture was the Forest River Citation with a GVWR of 11,000 lbs. That weight puts it in nearly the same class as the smaller class C's!

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Old 07-09-2010, 09:56 PM   #142
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We do have a portable burner like that, but a different brand. In fact we have 3! We use them as on-the-table burners when serving certain dishes like fondue or table grills. They are more convenient than portable electric burners with their attached cords.
Yeah, I use ours mostly with a Wok. Try Garlic Shrimp in four minutes. Yum! (Try this one for instance - 4 Minute Spicy Garlic Shrimp - 107997 - Recipezaar)

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About the Sprinter-based RVs, I looked at the one that R-i-T had, out of curiosity, and found that it was different than the ones that I had seen. So, it appears that there might be more than one size or model of the Sprinter.
No question the Sprinter models are quite attractive. No real knocks from me.

FWIW, our GVWR is around 10,000 pounds.
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Old 07-09-2010, 10:08 PM   #143
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I love reading these RV posts. It's a topic I know almost nothing about but it's fun to read about other folk's travels.

I didn't know anything about Roadtreks so I watched the product demo video. Roadtrek Motorhome, RV Camper Van, Class B Motor Homes

What a clever way to travel! Reminds me of a houseboat we rented many years ago.
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Old 07-09-2010, 10:12 PM   #144
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By the way, you did not love it enough. You sold it and got the Trail Manor before getting the current class A, if I remember correctly. One reservation I have about these Sprinters is that their Cargo Carrying Capacity was only a few hundred pounds. Light travelers can live with that, but that CCC does not leave a lot of reserve. And I once have seen people towing a toad with a Sprinter. I wonder if it was safe.
Au contraire. We learned to enjoy RVing in the Sprinter -- so much we decided to step up in terms of space (while keeping it in our driveway) so we could make longer trips in comfort. It had all the major systems of a larger motorhome so we learned the ropes there. When we finally decided on a larger motorhome we knew enough about what we wanted and what mattered that it was an easy transition.

Some suggest going from no experience to a full size Class A. While that is probably the most cost-effective strategy, we found it much more comfortable to work our way up so we knew what we wanted.

BTW, the sprinter had a 6k lb towing capacity. And for more cargo room we added a removeble cargo carrier for bulky items. Easily held enough for a week before recycling. Each RV served its purpose well for us - there is no model that is right for everyone.
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Old 07-09-2010, 10:42 PM   #145
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Sprinters come in a lot of flavors and even more custimizations. There's the short 19' long, & the 24'. There are 3 heights. Then the 2500 & stronger 3500. Each comes with all the other variations. And there is the chassis only that the class c's are built on. And then there all the older Sprinters pre 2007 with a bunch more versions.

From what I've read, some Sprinters are overloaded. Overloading happens a lot in rv's whether they are Sprinters or not. At this rate, I'll have a mad dash to get it inspected, registered, licensed before my trip and I'll learn it on the road. Oh well. It will be nice to have a little cabin wherever I am.

I hope I don't overload mine. I have to wait another week for mine. Getting parts to fix the backup camera.
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Old 07-10-2010, 07:51 AM   #146
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What a clever way to travel! Reminds me of a houseboat we rented many years ago.
Yes, it is. It is why we think of the Roadtrek as our yacht.
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Old 07-10-2010, 07:56 AM   #147
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Each RV served its purpose well for us - there is no model that is right for everyone.
Probably the most important thing said in this thread. Although, I believe every model would serve anyone well. RVing is RVing no matter the device. There are many roads to happiness. (pun intended)
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Old 07-10-2010, 07:58 AM   #148
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It will be nice to have a little cabin wherever I am.
Your own pillows and your own mattress... aaaah, that's the life!
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Old 07-10-2010, 08:32 AM   #149
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I hope I don't overload mine.
The only way to be sure (and safe) is to weigh it. Once you have it fully loaded for a trip and a full tank of gas, drop by a public scale (most big truck stops have one) and spend $10 to get an accurate weight with you and your passengers in it.
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Old 07-10-2010, 09:57 AM   #150
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I took pictures of our Roadtrek today (the first) in Theodore Roosevelt National Park. (Maybe it does look like it has 60,000 miles on it.)
I like those class B RVs! I spent 2 hours last nice browsing the Roadtrek website and I can't believe how functional and well-appointed their RVs are, especially given their rather diminutive size. If I ever get an RV, that's the kind I would be looking for! Just for fun, I am going to check used RV sales on the web today...
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Old 07-10-2010, 10:15 AM   #151
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I like those class B RVs! I spent 2 hours last nice browsing the Roadtrek website and I can't believe how functional and well-appointed their RVs are, especially given their rather diminutive size. If I ever get an RV, that's the kind I would be looking for! Just for fun, I am going to check used RV sales on the web today...
Think long and hard about how you will be using a potential RV - that's the key to making the right choice of class and size. We weren't quite sure about that at first, and decided to move from smaller to larger as we explored how we would use it.

We had storage issues and were inexperienced RVers. So the class B allowed us to keep it in our driveway, drive it with little hassle and kept gas expense low. All along we learned about the lifestyle, systems, and compromises. We could have made it our second vehicle but our garage was too low, and work parking would have been problematic. We had a blast, and very importantly we learned that we would enjoy longer trips than just a few days, say in the 10-14 day range.

That last factor led us to upgrade to the Trail Manor, towed by our already-owned Sequoia. Plenty of room, king bed, ample space inside. Learned about towing and more. At that point we were hooked. We now envisioned 3 or 4 week-long trips and a "rolling condominium" type of usage. As soon as ESR approached we upgraded to a Class A, rented storage space nearby and voila.

Despite trade-ins etc. I know we took a beating on cost. This was partly neutralized by purchasing our Class A (a Winnebago Itasca Suncruiser 35L) during the deep recession days, at least 40% off MSRP (30% discounts are still commonplace).

Anyhow, think beyond the novelty factor and you'll make a good choice. And, as our experience shows, you can always move to a different RV for any reason to the extent your budget permits.
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Old 07-10-2010, 10:33 AM   #152
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Think long and hard about how you will be using a potential RV - that's the key to making the right choice of class and size. We weren't quite sure about that at first, and decided to move from smaller to larger as we explored how we would use it.
Good points. I like the idea of a travel trailer - unhook your tow vehicle and go.

Generally, the longer you plan to be on the road the bigger vehicle you may want - up to a point. I'm amazed at the size of some of the 5th wheels out there and how relatively inexpensively they are.
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Old 07-10-2010, 10:39 AM   #153
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Thanks Rich. This is only me day dreaming... DW is not sold on the whole RV lifestyle yet.

In terms of living space and amenities, a larger RV would be ideal. A real home away from home. But there are many reasons why I would prefer a smaller RV:

1) I don't see myself driving a big rig (parking, navigating around cities, etc...). I imagine that driving a class B RV, which is in essence a big van, would be much easier (and less stressful) for a novice like me.

2) I don't plan on traveling in an RV for months on ends. I enjoy going back home and I can't imagine being on the road for more than 2 weeks straight. For such short periods of time, roughing it a little would be part of the fun I think (I spent a lot of summers in small RVs as a kid, so I am used to the challenges).

The only thing I envy about larger RVs is the full size bathroom. In the Roadtrek models I have seen, it looks like you have to shower in the aisle and I would personally prefer a permanent bathroom.
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Old 07-10-2010, 10:51 AM   #154
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Good points. I like the idea of a travel trailer - unhook your tow vehicle and go.

Generally, the longer you plan to be on the road the bigger vehicle you may want - up to a point. I'm amazed at the size of some of the 5th wheels out there and how relatively inexpensively they are.
With 5th wheels you sure do get a lot of RV for not too much money, but don't forget that you have to buy the proper heavy duty truck to tow them with - and those bigger trucks aren't that cheap.

I've noticed that some folks really skimp on the truck they tow their 5th wheel with - some definitely look underpowered and overweight. I shudder to think what might happen if they need to brake on a steep downhill.

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Old 07-10-2010, 10:57 AM   #155
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Thanks Rich. This is only me day dreaming... DW is not sold on the whole RV lifestyle yet.

In terms of living space and amenities, a larger RV would be ideal. A real home away from home. But there are many reasons why I would prefer a smaller RV:

1) I don't see myself driving a big rig (parking, navigating around cities, etc...). I imagine that driving a class B RV, which is in essence a big van, would be much easier (and less stressful) for a novice like me.

2) I don't plan on traveling in an RV for months on ends. I enjoy going back home and I can't imagine being on the road for more than 2 weeks straight. For such short periods of time, roughing it a little would be part of the fun I think (I spent a lot of summers in small RVs as a kid, so I am used to the challenges).

The only thing I envy about larger RVs is the full size bathroom. In the Roadtrek models I have seen, it looks like you have to shower in the aisle and I would personally prefer a permanent bathroom.
Those Class B's are really great for being on the road a lot (moving around quite a bit) and the small size and "ready to go" nature can be really convenient. Also, a small rig lets you camp a lot more places than a larger rig will.

And almost all parks have shower facilities, so you don't need to use the RV for that. I notice in state parks that a lot of people even in bigger rigs use the provided shower facilities.

Unfortunately, DH is just too tall to be comfortable in a Class B. If we ever downsize, it'll probably be to a largish Class C. But we aren't ready to downsize because we still expect to spend half the year in our RV. And even if we don't have to carry nearly as much stuff ('cause we now have a house to leave some stuff in) we still need the living space and "all weather" properties of a larger rig.

Besides, we'd like to keep this rig to 10 years old if possible (knock on wood!), and we are only half way there.

Audrey
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Old 07-10-2010, 11:15 AM   #156
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With 5th wheels you sure do get a lot of RV for not too much money, but don't forget that you have to buy the proper heavy duty truck to tow them with - and those bigger trucks aren't that cheap.

I've noticed that some folks really skimp on the truck they tow their 5th wheel with - some definitely look underpowered and overweight. I shudder to think what might happen if they need to brake on a steep downhill.
Yep. Our DP is almost 10 and I've been toying with the idea of replacing it with a 5th wheel. Problem is even many small (by 5th wheel standards) 29-31' models require a minimum of a properly equipped diesel F250/350 or equivalent sized truck. And that may be borderline for some of the heavier models.

When you get to the huge 40' models, the only safe thing to pull them with is a medium duty truck like this:
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File Type: jpg medium-duty-5th-wheel-rv-truck-by-soulrider.222.jpg (505.3 KB, 2 views)
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Old 07-10-2010, 11:25 AM   #157
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Yep. Our DP is almost 10 and I've been toying with the idea of replacing it with a 5th wheel. Problem is even many small (by 5th wheel standards) 29-31' models require a minimum of a properly equipped diesel F250/350 or equivalent sized truck. And that may be borderline for some of the heavier models.

When you get to the huge 40' models, the only safe thing to pull them with is a medium duty truck like this:
I think you should get a Prevost.
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Old 07-10-2010, 11:38 AM   #158
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I think you should get a Prevost.
I considered it but couldn't find one in my price range.
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Old 07-10-2010, 11:42 AM   #159
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Yep. Our DP is almost 10 and I've been toying with the idea of replacing it with a 5th wheel. Problem is even many small (by 5th wheel standards) 29-31' models require a minimum of a properly equipped diesel F250/350 or equivalent sized truck. And that may be borderline for some of the heavier models.

When you get to the huge 40' models, the only safe thing to pull them with is a medium duty truck like this:
If you can get a new F350 for 40K and a 5th wheel for 50K isn't that much less than a Class A/B plus a small car?

I don't know either market well.

2011 Ford F-350 Super Duty Pricing and Information

I've also heard that if you don't move the 5th wheel that often you can hire companies to move it for you.
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Old 07-10-2010, 11:50 AM   #160
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If you can get a new F350 for 40K and a 5th wheel for 50K isn't that much less than a Class A/B plus a small car?
A little less, but not really that much. Lots of pros and cons to going either way.
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