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Author Topic: Did you upsize from a class B?  (Read 619 times)
TomHanlon
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« on: June 16, 2017, 05:42:17 pm »

A lot of us on here downsized into a PC. Some of us have had smaller campers in the past, like pop-ups, tents, pickup campers and even a micro-mini. PC advertises about down sizing. What about you guys that moved from a class B. What made you move up in size and how do you feel about the differences now.
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Doneworking
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« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2017, 08:07:00 pm »

Tom, that's us!   Our first RV was an old 1977(I think) Delta Class C.  We bought it in 1982 and traded it in 84 or 5 for an Intervec Horizon, the kid sister to the Falcon.  They were made, as most on this forum are aware, by a company that later evolved in Phoenix Cruiser.  We later bought a 1996 Roadtrek 190P brand spanking new.  Then, in 2003 I think it was, we bought a new "B+", a Gulfstream BT Cruiser about 24 feet long, just the size of our PC 2350.   In 2007 we traded it on a new Roadtrek 210P and kept it until we bought the Phoenix Cruiser 2350 we currently own and that purchase was in September 2013.   

We moved from the Roadtrek 210P to the PC2350 because we wanted to camp for extended periods of time in one place and the PC was perfect for that purpose.  Interestingly enough, the usable exterior storage on the RT was superior to our PC and we had about the same amount of storage inside in both units.   The dry bath was a major consideration for us.  The black tank on the RT was 10 gallons and it is 35 on our PC.   

Laying in our corner bed in the 2350, my wife laughed and said it looked like fifty yards to the windshield of the PC!   We just spent almost three weeks in the PC boondocking and living on carried water and solar.  That would be tough in a B but we have done it in the past, you just have to make a few trips somewhere to dump. 

I suspect, honestly, there is another B in our future.  We store the PC about three miles away from our home in a rented enclosed storage unit.  Our home has a garage with a nine foot door that will accommodate a small B.  It is incredibly convenient to walk out into the garage and have your rig sitting there, as Ron does on this forum with his PC2350.  We can't do that with ours because of the height. 

We enjoy the dry bath, the real stand up room in the PC and we enjoy the space in the PC.   We tow and that can get old to me.  You gotta plan every gas refill, every situation and you have to really be careful at all times.   Driving a B is like driving a Chevy Suburban or equivalent. 

I think in a few years we will buy another B and take some time to travel completely around the USA and Canada before we get so darned old you can't do that anymore.   The ability to just "whip into" a restaurant, an attraction, etc. is a done deal with a B and a challenge often with a C towing something IMO.   But, man we would really miss the room and the dry bath.   

Camp:  get a C.   Tour:  consider a B.   Having had three of each and switched back and forth we know the advantages of both pretty well.   A B is a van and drives like such.  A C is a truck and drives like a truck.   

You pose an interesting question for discussion.  I will be interested to see the responses.

Paul
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donc13
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« Reply #2 on: June 16, 2017, 10:50:44 pm »

We started with a pick-up camper.  That didn't last too long.  It was on a 4x4 truck.  After the second time I fell out the door, I said that's enough!  It was, however a good  start to know we'd love the lifestyle.  The next, 22' Minnie was a 'let's go look, just to see what we might like to get when we retire' impulse purchase.  We wouldn't trade those ten years for anything.  She was getting a little too 'high maintenance'  so we traded her infor a 25' Forest River Lexington.  It was o.k. but we just never fell in love.  We were also getting tired of sleeping on the futon sofa and dinette.  Now retired, we wondered what else was out there that was small enough to go to our favorite places.  I thought that we should go to at least one Good Sam rally in our lifetime- and there they were, Earl, Kyle and Gopher.  We love the twin beds, the shower and the decor (she is soooo pretty).  It is so nice to have a  small unit that doesn't feel like a "starter home".  Thus, we left  Arizona in a new PC and have never looked back.  The odd thing is, I had no desire to look at anything else at that rally and to this day, I no longer "covet"  another RV.  We are happy  PC campers for life.

Patti
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JackD
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« Reply #3 on: June 17, 2017, 11:04:32 am »

OK, my 2 cents -- Like many, we started with tents, then horse trailer, horse trailer w/camper, Phoenixs, 2350 Ford, then 2552, & back to 2350 Sprinter which we went many places - all NP, SP, etc and enjoyed traveling and the flexibility, This was a little small for extended stay w/2 fair sized dogs, so went to a 5th wheel.  This is great for 3 month winters in FL, but not for mobility.  For that reason, its back to the 2350 Sprinter for mobility, and will keep the 5th wheel for FL winters, and at the farm when visiting the kids.  Hopefully, this is it!!!
Jack
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ron.dittmer
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« Reply #4 on: June 17, 2017, 10:28:36 pm »

As a kid, my parents took us 4 kids around the country for the month of August for many years in their 67 Plymouth Fury pulling a little Montgomery Wards tent on wheels.  The 6 of us took up 100% of the trailer including the floor.  I envied people traveling in a Winnebago Brave.

At age 25 with our first baby in 1983, I had to have better so we bought this thing which was 6" shorter than our 1971 Delta 88.  It's officially a class C, but it was smaller than many class Bs.  Brand new it cost us $12,225.  It had no real facilities, basically cabinets, a bed, and a converta-dinette on-wheels.  We bought it without any kind of a/c.  It had a manual transmission and even manual steering.






2006 was the "Last Straw" year.  At age 48, we were on I-90 heading west to the Badlands with temps that reached 117 degrees where my wife Irene almost passed out.  The following year we owned our PC.  When shopping for it, it had to meet a few critical points I list here on top of normal stuff like both kinds of a/c and power steering as some basic examples.

1) NO COMPROMISE...It must fit in our garage like our old rig did
2) Must have a main floor bed for two adults sleeping together
3) Must have a normal dinette that could be converted into a bed as needed if having a guest.

The rest was less critical but it had to be fully self contained.  In the end we got much better than originally envisioned with our 2007 2350.  It is still a castle to us with so much more than we ever had before.

BTW: Nice post Tom.  Thanks for starting it.  I've been enjoying the replies.
Ron Dittmer
« Last Edit: June 17, 2017, 10:48:10 pm by ron.dittmer » Logged

Ron & Irene Dittmer, 2007 Model 2350, Ordered Without A Slideout
TomHanlon
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« Reply #5 on: June 18, 2017, 06:47:56 am »

I have been talking with Paul via messages and though that I would post my reply to him here for all to see.


"Hi Paul,

Thank you for your interest in my topic and this message. My wife and I have owned many campers over the last 45 years of camping. These included a pickup camper, a slide in bed unit, 2 class C, 3 class A, and 2 PCs. They ranged from 8 to 35 feet in length. We have gone from small up to large back to small then large again and now to small in the PCs. We have had fun in every one of our campers. Our favorite one was a 21 foot Chinook, now called a class B+. We loved the ability to go anywhere and park anywhere. The 28 ft PC 2552 is just a little to long for a lot of parking places as you know. The Chinook had a wet bath, which we only used three times in seven years. Me sleeping on the sofa, my wife and a labador retriever on the dinette and a large German shepherd on the floor got hard as we got older. We remember the good and the not so good of a small motor home.

The other day we saw the current Roadtrek on the internet's you tube. We paid a visit to a local dealer and we're very impressed with all the new features like LED lights, solar, lithium batteries, engine generator and even self start the engine to charge the batteries.  The ability to dry camp in remote places and even leave our dog in the camper in a parking lot with the A/C running off batteries was fascinating.

When the salesman said it would cost us $90K plus our PC  or more we came back to loving the PC. This did make me wonder about what folks that had both a class B and a PC though about their switch now.

I feel that the Phoenix needs to update what they offer or they are going to get left behind and have a hard time staying in business. They have been offering the same thing with minor updates for many years now.

Have a great day.
Tom
"

If Paul wants to post his original message and/or his reply to this message, which I hope he does as it is very interesting, please do.
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Doneworking
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« Reply #6 on: June 18, 2017, 07:30:36 am »

Tom, I have had some problems with my computer and don't apparently have a copy of my two private messages to you regarding this topic.  Please feel free to copy and post my messages if you think they might be helpful to someone.  Meanwhile, I am running tests to try and figure out what happened to my private message response copies. 

Paul
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TomHanlon
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« Reply #7 on: June 19, 2017, 06:21:08 am »

Here is Paul's first message:
You have just been sent a personal message by Doneworking on Cruisers Forum.

IMPORTANT: Remember, this is just a notification. Please do not reply to this email.

The message they sent you was:

Tom, greetings!  I responded to your post on the forum about the B to C switch.  I don't know if this topic you started was just out of curiosity or perhaps you are thinking about making such a move yourself.   If you are, I would be happy to provide more information privately to you by email or phone. 

I said in my post we have owned three Bs but I failed to add we "sort of" owned four of them.  In 1982 we bought a new Chevy 2500 van and converted it into a camper.  Being young and stupid I started this project in Oklahoma in August with temps hitting the high 90s and low 100s every day.  We had windows and seats installed by a van conversion company in town and did the rest ourselves.   I used birch 1/4 inch plywood for the ceiling and parts of the side panels, insulated the ceiling and floor and carpeted the side panels.  I built a small sink cabinet with a five gallon container for water and one for gray, had a cassette porta potty, a gaucho couch in the back and a third swivel seat.  We were in business and we had a ball with this rig for years, then we spotted the Intervec Horizon and got our true B. 

Incidentally, we stripped the Chevy of the camping gear and used it as a hauler for several years.  Finally, we gave it to the Salvation Army in 2004.   That baby was bright red and probably the most fun vehicle we ever owned.   I was 39 and my wife 35 when we built it and we have an old photo album titled "Our Chevy Van" (remember the song of the same title from the 60s?) and it displays our conversion with about forty pictures.

Let me know if I can answer any specific questions about Bs.   I was active on the rv.net B forum for years (joined in 2002 as I recall) and still stay close to B folks/models/brands etc. 

Paul Woolsey
Oklahoma City


Here is his reply to my message:
Tom, thank you for your definitive reply to my earlier message.   

I suspect you have personally met the PC fellows and I have not done that but they obviously are getting older and, like Chinook and Roadtrek and Born Free, I bet they will soon sell out, merge or some similar restructure.   Small manufacturers have high mortality rates it seems in the modern economy.   And, like you, I don't see anything new and attractive coming from the company.   Still, I certainly appreciate the cut above quality of PC compared to most C manufacturers.  Perhaps, however, they can go a long time in a very small niche market space like the one they occupy.  Who knows. 

I recently came across this  http://classbwarned.com/

I had wondered if the techno super duper stuff might be a bit on the edge engineering wise.  The guy that wrote the blog may or may not be reporting accurately.   What I do know is I am pretty well restricted to the 190 or 210 Roadtreks because of the nine foot door on my garage. We have a three car garage with the two car portion having a conventional sized door and the third door being nine feet tall.  We built this house that way in 1998 to accommodate our 1996 190P.   The door cannot be modified because of the structural design and roof of our home.  That third portion of the garage is walled off from the other portion and has an HVAC vent out there which is sufficient to keep it about ten degrees above or below the ambient outside temperature.   It is simply perfect for a B but when I built it all Bs would fit, now only some RTs which eliminates a lot of desirable models.

I must say, the RTs are just out of sight price wise.   I think when we get ready to trade back to a B we will try to pick up a 2-4 year old model and save some bucks.   Also, I have carefully examined the new Roadtreks and am convinced (perhaps my own memories and prejudice) the older models are better built than the new ones.  Just a lot of little things that most people would never notice if they had not owned two older models.

I will say this:  having owned a 210 and a 190 both, that added seven inches in width and small extra length makes a big difference in parking ability in some places.  I love the Chevy 6.0L engine.   They are really a fine motor that is proven and, like our PC Fords, can be worked on in any town you might have problems. 

Good luck and thanks for sharing.  As I recall, you are towing a Jeep Trailhawk and we have that in common.   

Happy travels,

Paul


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