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Old 01-25-2016, 07:07 PM   #1
Lost in the Woods
 
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Progress with Wife Today

Finally got my wife out trailer shopping. Found a 35 ft Blackstone she liked, the 280RKSB. Now I have to figure out how to match it to a Jayco for our next shopping trip. Priced at 63/48 which I think should be closer to 63/40K or 40%, considering the time of year...but there were more people shopping than I expected out here in sunny California...so maybe we are a bit past optimum discount time.

I would prefer a 5th and a better quality shower. The wife put 2 and 2 together without any prompting from me and told me she liked the trailers better than the mh in concept and was very articulate about the benefits of a truck and trailer. If I didn't know better I would think she was an experienced camper. She also said she read an article about a couple who sold their house and now the wife regrets it, so looks like she has been doing some quiet homework.

The BlackStone product line targets RV buyers that are downsizing from a motorhome or larger fifth wheel but still looking for those luxury type features that go along with this RV lifestyle. But at 9,000 pounds it is not a full-time quality unit and like the shower, there has to be some shortcuts, so I'm a bit skeptical of the claims that it fully competes with luxury 5th wheels.

Will have to dig deeper before we look some more. Wife is also open to a 3 year old used model.
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Old 01-25-2016, 07:49 PM   #2
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Your wife sounds like a keeper.
I am sure the two of you will sort it out to mutual satisfaction.

Good luck and keep us posted.
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Old 01-27-2016, 01:00 AM   #3
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Why isn't it a full time unit cause it only weighs 9000lbs? For goodness sakes it a TT not a 5th wheel. 100% chance you'll never find a TT that weighs as much as a 5th wheel in the same size. Out of curiosity what's a full time TT suppose to weigh?
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Old 01-27-2016, 10:16 AM   #4
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The number I used was something referred to several times off several forums. No one person attempted to justify that number, but I have found it to be a useful starting point among various starting points to work upwards on.

Word of mouth regarding RVs is basically a moving target, often not absolute, often just as misleading as useful, but not something one should ignore without serious thought given to it.

Word of mouth is certainly not to be ignored as we are surrounded with this overwhelmingly hard push towards new units and lots of fluff reviews. Even across forums, many members often push newbies into focusing on floor plan and walking shows...very bad advice from my point of view.

My basic mode of thought is I start with a mfg like DRV, take note of things like the suspension, insulation, framing, brakes, tires, weight, etc. and then compare it, as I did a few days ago, with the Blackstone by Outdoors RV. I also search the owner's forums to read their complaints, and other things.

Frankly, if I'm gonna buy used as is my plan, I'm gonna buy a premium 5th, tt, or mh and push that as high as I can go. These units take a tremendous beating and the weight of what is put in and the suspension and the roof are big deals.

All of this is a judgment, but I have found 9,000 lbs seems a bit light as a starting point and even something to work much higher above towards. Having received my RV inspector's and certified technician training and experience after I retired, you could say I tend to want to hedge my RV bet heavily (pun intended).

And I have no need to be right, just be heavy if nothing else, unless of course I don't plan to move it much. Add heavy duty to that.
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Old 01-27-2016, 11:20 AM   #5
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Interesting to use weight as an indication of quality. I clearly follow your logic, and I can't say I disagree, but it's so contrary to what you frequently read. That is many, if not most, are looking for large high quality towables that are still compatible with 1500/150. You must have, or prepared to purchase, an extremely stout tow vehicle. You start getting north of 10k UVW and you are starting to push yourself beyond 3500/350 DRW tow vehicles. In my estimation once you are looking at MDTs or 4500/5500 trucks you begin to lose the utility of that vehicle for basic transportation while the TT/5er is setup in camp.

Just my thoughts.
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Old 01-27-2016, 11:26 AM   #6
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Why are you looking at DRVs and then looking at TTs? They're not even in the same class.
You still didn't answer my question as to what a full time TT should weigh.
I would also add that if you're looking at DRV as your standard then you're in for a big let down unless you look at other high end 5th wheels. TTs aren't even close to full time type 5th wheels. Any time you go from independent suspension, disk brakes, drop tube frames to a TT you've just gone from a 3500 DRW to a Tacoma in terms of function.
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Old 01-27-2016, 11:49 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goducks View Post
Why are you looking at DRVs and then looking at TTs? They're not even in the same class.
You still didn't answer my question as to what a full time TT should weigh.
I would also add that if you're looking at DRV as your standard then you're in for a big let down unless you look at other high end 5th wheels. TTs aren't even close to full time type 5th wheels. Any time you go from independent suspension, disk brakes, drop tube frames to a TT you've just gone from a 3500 DRW to a Tacoma in terms of function.
In a previous discussion, the thread about "entry step recall failure" RodgerS mentioned the weight....

"Full time units are usually heavy, starting somewhere around 16,000 lbs as I understand it. Invariably the mfgs cut corners to control their price points on the entry level units."

Between this thread, and the statement from the previous thread, is why I made my comment on exceeding a 3500/350 TV. At 16k UVW in a 5r would likely have a tongue weight of >4000lbs right, maybe a bit less if it was a TT but I am not sure I have ever seen a TT with a 16k UVW -- then again Inhave never looked for one.
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Old 01-27-2016, 12:04 PM   #8
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"Why are you looking at DRVs and then looking at TTs?"
Keeping an open mind. Like clubhouse said, one has to evaluate the tradeoffs.
Generally speaking, I'm drawn to the 5th.

Wife is just getting involved and she has her thoughts as well. For example, a marine bathroom is out, a fireplace is in, about 34 to 36 feet will work, a kitchen island is not a draw, and I found out that even though she seemed to want a jeep, she also likes trucks. Imagine that...and she is from China. She is even planning for the dog...a boxer.

"You still didn't answer my question as to what a full time TT should weigh."
And I don't plan to. Sometimes you have to do your own research.

"if you're looking at DRV as your standard then you're in for a big let down unless you look at other high end 5th wheels. "
That might be true for you, but not true for me. All goes to fitness for purpose. And yes I'm looking at a lot of 5th wheels. Got to get my wife into a Seneca and get her thoughts.

"Between this thread, and the statement from the previous thread," Yep, lots of things to consider and all the various weight issues/considerations are important. Fortunately, my wife is about 110 lbs and a bit taller than me, so that will help on the truck GVWR.

I would not be surprised to find myself somewhere between a 350 dually and a freightliner sport at the end of the day. I really like the disc brakes and suspension on the DRV.

I estimate more or less that about 120K will get me into a used truck and used DRV, so that gives me a pretty good top end benchmark within my budget. That will also buy a good used Newmar mh plus a towable. Dropping my budget to 80K then gives me a nice comfortable low benchmark with a range to work within. Still have to take the wife to see a Jayco Pinnacle.
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Old 01-27-2016, 12:21 PM   #9
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@RodgerS -- you probably are aware with your training and research, but allow me to point out that once you exceed 10k GVW in a towable, our lovely state requires you to have a non-commercial Class A DL. Secondly, before you plunk down your cash, I would be extremely confident whatever you end up with your wife is comfortable driving just in case.

My wife's ability to drive our combination was not something we gave much thought too. That is until we were camping and a neighboring camper broke his leg, couldn't drive, and it was up to his wife to get them home. She was extremely nervous, so much so we drove them out of the CG and to the highway so she didn't have to negotiate the tight roads her first time towing. Before our next trip, DW and I went to an open lot and let her get some practice, then she drove both ways on the following trip (including spotting the trailer) just so she could prove to both of us she can handle it should an incident require it.

Again, just my thoughts.
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Old 01-27-2016, 12:24 PM   #10
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An RV should be an enjoyable experience. If you have the energy and the will to haul a heavy trailer, then more power to you.

I have hauled more fifth wheels for more miles and heavier loads than probably anyone on this forum. I do not any more. I want to enjoy myself and the heavier a trailer becomes, the less enjoyable the travel time becomes. Add in bad weather and changing elevations, and you just magnify the stress levels exponentially.


The stress of always being concerned about stopping distances and the things other drivers do in front of you, just suck the energy right out of me.

It may be okay for those who are the occasional RV'r, but the more miles you put on them, the quicker ones hair turns grey IMO.

Now your mileage may vary, but living in Houston, where traffic makes most other cities look like a stroll in the park, heavy is not a good thing.

If it exceeds the payload capacity of my truck alone, I do not want to haul it any more.

I see\have seen a lot of Class A and 5th wheel owner snobbyness over the years. Some just can not help it.
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2016 Jayco Eagle 330RSTS = "Madame Maxime"
Maxxis M8008 E rated Tires and 16" Wheel Upgrade
Dual A/C 15K BTU, 14K Equalizer WD hitch with SC
King Bed with Java Interior, (2X) Yamaha EF2000isV2
2012 Ram 4500, 6.7L Cummins Turbo Diesel, MegaCab = "Hagrid"
8'x12' BMCM Stake Bed, Cabin Chassis, 2WD
360 degree Virtual Tour
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