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Author Topic: Selling your 2350 with dinette? Want to buy used.  (Read 10077 times)
sajohnson
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« Reply #105 on: March 24, 2012, 03:44:51 am »

sajohnson, you may be over thinking this whole issue.  I know the sleeping arrangement is important, but it's not the most important consideration when buying a particular rv.  My 2010 2350 couch has the air mattress.  Not comfortable and prone to leaks.  The mattress on the corner bed has an angle on one side/end that I would imagine would make it rather expensive to have another mattress made.  Yesterday I laid on the new electric sofa that is constructed with memory foam, and it was very comfortable.  The storage under my existing sofa is great considering the limited storage in the 2350, but I would trade it for the comfort of the new memory foam couch.  In fact, I did.  I purchased a new 2552--not just for the memory foam couch, but it was a consideration.  I would suggest you look at your overall rv needs, and buy one that matches most of them.  For the price, pc can't be beat.  I love the driveability of my 2350, comfort and overall performance--and I have no regrets buying it.  We're going full-time and wanted a little more room/storage, so we purchased the 2552.  I could just as easily stayed with the 2350 and been very satisfied.  My advice--call Stuart.

I do have a tendency to over-think purchases -- and the more expensive they are, the more focused I become.  It's just my nature.

I've been researching and comparing the various class B+/C RVs for about 3 years now, since before I retired.  One of the primary reasons my wife and I first got serious about buying a RV was because we found that more often than not, neither of us could get a good night's sleep at hotels or in the homes of friends and family.  I imagine part of the reason is age related, and partly because we've had a Tempur-Pedic mattress for years now and we're used to sleeping on it.  Our thinking was/is that we can modify our RV to be our own portable efficiency apartment, so we can be comfortable almost anywhere.  Of course it would be great if the rig comes with good quality memory foam mattresses, but that's something that can be changed if necessary.  Especially with any fixed/permanent bed (corner, twin, walk-around queen).  Using toppers on sofa beds and dinette beds is a bit more complicated as they add to the set-up/tear-down procedure and they must be stored somewhere. 

WRT the corner being cut off the corner bed mattress, there are several places online that sell memory foam mattresses and toppers.  They will make them just about any size or shape, but memory foam is easy to cut, so if for some reason the extra charge for cutting the corner off is excessive, I'd just order the full size mattress (~50x76, IIRC) and cut it myself.

The new electric sofa sounds like it might be the best one yet.  Of course there are many types and grades of memory foam (density, etc), but if it is comfortable without a topper that would be great.  Certainly an option to keep in mind.

Believe me, over the last few years, my wife and I have discussed our needs and wants as well as the various options that are available over and over again.  It may seem from my recent posts that my only concern is the sleeping arrangement.  That's not the case at all, I just happen to be focused on that issue currently.

I know PC RVs are a good value -- that's why I'm spending so much time posting here.  We were also considering the WGO View/Navion (first the 'J' model w/corner bed, and then the Profile/iQ with the walk-around queen in a rear slide) and spent a lot of time on the View-Navion Yahoo group to find out as much as I could about them from owners -- before buying one, either new or used.  That's what I'm doing here.  You'll see that I posted here quite a bit several months ago and then was gone for a while.  That's because my wife and I were cautioned by several people about the corner bed and the 'crawling over factor'.  We decided to try and find a RV of similar size to the 2350 with a walk-around queen.  That turned out to limit our choices too much, so now we're back to the corner bed models -- and that led us back here to the 2350.

In any case, we are doing our best to find an RV that matches most of our needs (as you suggest) but I'm trying to make the right choice the first time.  I can't afford to go through 3 or 4 RVs before finding the 'right' one -- especially if we end up buying new.

As we all know, there are a lot of variables and options to consider -- mfr; Ford or Sprinter chassis; length; floor plan; type of construction; windows; generator (LP, diesel, gas); inverter; fans; type/quality/size of shower; size of water and LP tanks; galley -- size/quality of sink, stove, fridge (two door or single door); dinette or sofa/bed; amount of interior and exterior storage; etc, etc...

I think we have it pretty well nailed down.  The PC 2350 w/slide on the Sprinter chassis comes closest to what we're looking for, but I do need to iron out some details.  I do plan to call Stuart in the near future but I'm trying to get as much info as I can first, so I'll have a good list of questions.

For example -- something that's been bothering me since it was mentioned is that the slide adds 500 pounds to the 2350.  That much additional weight will take a serious bite out of the already limited CCC of the Sprinter chassis, and may force me to rethink the slide.

Sherman
   
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TomHanlon
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« Reply #106 on: March 24, 2012, 09:01:26 am »

Hi Sherman,

It might help you to make up a sheet with a list of your requirements running down the page. Next to each requirement list what you think you would prefer and what you don't want. You seem to be going in circles on your requirement and this may help slow you down so you can make an informed decision. You are the first person I have ever seen that is worried about the weight of the slide out. Two guys lift the side out up and place it into the hole in the wall of the PC. Then the guy inside puts the refer and sofa or dinette in the slide. So how much does the slide weight? Maybe a couple hundred pounds, maybe 500 lbs with the dinette and the refer, both of which you are going to get anyway.

If I didn't tell you when you were here, you are always welcome to come back by to look at my PC and ask any question you have, try it on for size, or if you bring some cold ones and need to share with someone. Just give me a call or send an email. I too am retired so I am home during the day sometimes.
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JackD
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« Reply #107 on: March 24, 2012, 09:51:15 am »

Sherman ---  also, bear in mind that the new, split electric sofa will not fit in the sprinter, if your still thinking along that line.  I'm told the additional height of the Sprinter prevents the new style sofa from resting on the floor when extended. (Personally, I have trouble comprehending this, but that's what I'm told by Phoenix). so, they are having the original electric sofa bed (before the air mattress) made with extra memory foam.  This should work.  I hope so, because we can't (don't) use the RV now because of the sofa - very frustrating  pulling hair out
 
On your question about memory foam with the air mattress - we tried 2 inch, and it was still awful -- when the couch is opened, the sofa is reversed, so the underside (when closed) becomes the top of the "bed" - metal bar supports and all - the air mattress is supposed to compensate and provide cushioning - which it doesn't- even with a foam topper.  I kept hitting the support bars, and I'm not a big man -- I can imagine someone larger would really have a problem.

Jack
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ron.dittmer
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« Reply #108 on: March 24, 2012, 12:31:32 pm »

Sherman,

When you visit your family in Sycamore, IL be sure to stop by our house with your wife.  It would be good for both of you to see an example of the "other" choice.

It is hard to determine the weight of a slide out.

I did ask that same question back in 2007, the days of the smaller slide out.  I was told it would add 400 pounds to my 2350.  The assumption that the larger slide out today adds an additional 100 pounds is conceivable, assuming the data given me is accurate.

I would assume the weight involves extra framing of the exterior wall, floor reinforcement, tracks, the awning topper, trim, gaskets, etc, etc, and the differences in furniture.  The dinette weighs hardly anything.  I think the heavist thing is the table itself.
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sajohnson
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« Reply #109 on: March 24, 2012, 06:07:52 pm »

Hi Sherman,

It might help you to make up a sheet with a list of your requirements running down the page. Next to each requirement list what you think you would prefer and what you don't want. You seem to be going in circles on your requirement and this may help slow you down so you can make an informed decision. You are the first person I have ever seen that is worried about the weight of the slide out. Two guys lift the side out up and place it into the hole in the wall of the PC. Then the guy inside puts the refer and sofa or dinette in the slide. So how much does the slide weight? Maybe a couple hundred pounds, maybe 500 lbs with the dinette and the refer, both of which you are going to get anyway.

If I didn't tell you when you were here, you are always welcome to come back by to look at my PC and ask any question you have, try it on for size, or if you bring some cold ones and need to share with someone. Just give me a call or send an email. I too am retired so I am home during the day sometimes.

Thanks for the offer Tom, that's very generous, we may take you up on it!  The friendly, helpful folks like yourself here on the PC forum are certainly a part of why I'm considering PC so strongly.

Good observation about going in circles -- I feel that way sometimes.  Some of it is unavoidable though, or at least seems to  be, because one change often leads to several others, which means re-evaluating much of what I thought had been resolved.  For example -- as I mentioned above, several months ago we were very interested in the View Profile/Navion iQ -- we liked the exterior shape of the coach (no cab-over) and the walk-around queen in a rear slide.  The more we looked at it though, the more drawbacks we found -- the galley leaves a lot to be desired (tiny almost unusable sink, the small 2 burner cook top w/glass cover [popular with many mfrs], and a single door fridge).  Also, we plan to carry a lightweight "Enduro" (dual sport) motorcycle on a hitch-mounted carrier and got to thinking more about having to unload it in order to extend the slide and set up the bed.  The newer models are actually worse in a coupe ways.  Starting in 2011, WGO actually took a step back by making the shower smaller and shorter, and replacing the retractable door with a curtain.  They also changed the cabinets and the door hardware (2010 and earlier had the marine-type 'push-to-lock' knobs). 

For those reasons we gave up on the Profile/iQ and started looking at corner bed floor plans.  We ended up here but were told by several people (here, and on other forums) that climbing over each other in the corner bed would get old and that we shouldn't give up on the walk-around queen bed idea.  I don't just blindly follow any anonymous forum member's advice, but I heard this from several people who clearly were knowledgeable and had personal experience, so I figured we shouldn't be so quick to dismiss the walk-around queen idea.  Unfortunately, to get a queen in a PC means going to the 2700 (and it appears as though the 2900 & 2910 are more truly 'walk-around').  So PC was out, as were many/most mfrs, because if there's one requirement I've remained resolute about it's that the length of the rig should be no more than 25 feet.  I think Mercedes may have a ~24.5 foot limit for their chassis anyway, because almost all Sprinter-based RVs seem to be 24'6" long.  There really are very few rigs to choose from that are <25' and have a walk-around queen.  After eliminating the Profile/iQ previously, we were left with the LTV Unity U24IB and one or two others (maybe Coach House?).  The U24IB is very nice in most ways, but it is expensive and it is a new design (so it's next impossible to find used).  One thing I found curious was that although the LTV rigs are expensive, they use a single door fridge.  Someone please correct me if I'm wrong, but my understanding is that the single door refrigerators are similar to the inexpensive 'dorm' style fridges that do not have a true, dedicated freezer.  Also, they use what they call an "FRP flexroof".  I haven't investigated that, but I've been told by several people that a one-piece fiberglass roof is best.

Anyway, that's the history.  As we've researched and learned more about what's available and owners' likes and dislikes we've gone off on a few tangents but I've ended up back here.

It may not seem like it, but we have pretty well nailed down what is important to us.  There is very little about the 2350 that I wish I could change, but the second bed is one of those things.  I'd like a dinette/bed that uses memory foam -- or maybe better yet, a sofa/bed and the two swivel chairs and flip-up table like in the 2400 (but there's not enough room in the 2350).  Even one chair facing forward w/table would be acceptable.  My wife agrees, but she also wants a slide and an extra bed for one or two adults.  That limits us to the sofa bed.  Since the sofa/bed is something that can be changed if necessary I guess I'll set that aside for now. 

Something that obviously can't be changed is the weight of the slide.  I'm going to talk with Stuart about that.  The reason I'm concerned about it (and others are not) is that the GVWR of the Sprinter is almost 1,500 lbs less than the E-350.  All PC's are of course built on the Ford chassis, and even the vast majority of 2350/2400 rigs use the Ford E-350 instead of the Sprinter.   I know many mfrs have trouble with very limited CCC in their Sprinter-based RVs.  Of course, almost all other mfrs also put slides in their Sprinter-based rigs.  With many of them, there's no option to eliminate the slide so there's no point in even thinking about it -- the CCC is either adequate for the potential buyer or it's not.  With PC I have a choice -- and it's an irreversible choice.  If it turns out that we can't safely haul what we want with the limited CCC of the Sprinter-based 2350 with the slide then we have a serious choice to make -- give up carrying the bike, give up the slide, or look elsewhere.

I'll give Stuart a call Monday.

Sherman       
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ron.dittmer
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« Reply #110 on: March 24, 2012, 07:20:37 pm »

About the rear corner bed.  It really comes down to, having the person by the exit get out in order to allow the other to get out.  With us, that comes to once overnight which we both find the need to visit the room next door.  It works....just not ideal like at home.  But so much better than us sleeping separate, and also sleeping in a cab-over where it's double trouble.  The one person must get out like we do, but in the smaller rigs, you can't even sit upright to scooch over.  That drove us crazy in our first tiny rig with cabover bed.
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« Reply #111 on: March 24, 2012, 07:21:35 pm »

Sherman ---  also, bear in mind that the new, split electric sofa will not fit in the sprinter, if your still thinking along that line.  I'm told the additional height of the Sprinter prevents the new style sofa from resting on the floor when extended. (Personally, I have trouble comprehending this, but that's what I'm told by Phoenix). so, they are having the original electric sofa bed (before the air mattress) made with extra memory foam.  This should work.  I hope so, because we can't (don't) use the RV now because of the sofa - very frustrating  pulling hair out
 
On your question about memory foam with the air mattress - we tried 2 inch, and it was still awful -- when the couch is opened, the sofa is reversed, so the underside (when closed) becomes the top of the "bed" - metal bar supports and all - the air mattress is supposed to compensate and provide cushioning - which it doesn't- even with a foam topper.  I kept hitting the support bars, and I'm not a big man -- I can imagine someone larger would really have a problem.

Jack

Hi Jack,

I'm sorry to hear that the sofa bed w/ the air mattress is preventing you from using your 2400.  I hope PC gets the replacement installed quickly.

You answered my question regarding using a memory foam topper on the sofa bed w/ the air mattress.  I was actually wondering about removing the air mattress entirely replacing it with the memory foam but that clearly won't work.  It sounds as though even a full-size memory foam mattress might not be enough with the metal support bars there.

We'll try to avoid the air mattress sofa bed -- or plan on replacing it if we find a rig with one that otherwise works for us.

I'm curious to know how your new sofa bed works out because my wife and I may want to get the same thing.  It would be really nice to not have to deal with adding a memory foam topper to make the sofa bed comfortable.  The bed would be easier to set up and tear down and we wouldn't have to worry about where to store the topper during the day.

Please give us an update when you get your new sofa bed!

Sherman
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sajohnson
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« Reply #112 on: March 24, 2012, 10:37:34 pm »

About the rear corner bed.  It really comes down to, having the person by the exit get out in order to allow the other to get out.  With us, that comes to once overnight which we both find the need to visit the room next door.  It works....just not ideal like at home.  But so much better than us sleeping separate, and also sleeping in a cab-over where it's double trouble.  The one person must get out like we do, but in the smaller rigs, you can't even sit upright to scooch over.  That drove us crazy in our first tiny rig with cabover bed.

Yep, that's the conclusion we came to also.  Everything else being equal (which of course it never is!) we'd prefer the walk-around queen -- but not enough to make the concessions that would be required.  The corner bed floor plan was the first one that caught our eye back at the beginning of the RV quest.

My wife and I briefly considered twin beds as an alternative to the walk-around queen but IIRC there weren't any Sprinter-based class B+/C rigs with twin beds.  I think WGO has a View with bunk beds, but that's as close as it gets.  The RVs that have twin beds are usually larger and built on the Ford chassis with the V-10.

Also, as is the case with you and your wife, neither one of us is crazy about the idea of sleeping in separate beds a la "I Love Lucy".  ;-)

As a practical matter, that may end up happening anyway, but at least with the corner bed we'll have the option to sleep in the same bed if we want to.

I hear you about the cab-over.  I have no personal experience, and I've read posts from people who don't seem to mind sleeping in a cab-over bunk, but I've always thought of them as a bed for the kids or grandkids.  I suppose for one adult, if the cab-over bunk had a comfortable mattress, it might be preferable to many sofa and dinette beds, but I don't like the idea of not being able to sit up.  In any case, the cab-over bunk is a non-issue with the PC rigs, and I really wouldn't want an RV that had one -- certainly not one of those huge cab-overs that sticks out beyond the top edge of the windshield.

Onward and upward...I'm hoping to talk with Stuart on Monday.  

Sherman  
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sajohnson
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« Reply #113 on: March 25, 2012, 12:30:11 am »

Sherman,

When you visit your family in Sycamore, IL be sure to stop by our house with your wife.  It would be good for both of you to see an example of the "other" choice.

It is hard to determine the weight of a slide out.

I did ask that same question back in 2007, the days of the smaller slide out.  I was told it would add 400 pounds to my 2350.  The assumption that the larger slide out today adds an additional 100 pounds is conceivable, assuming the data given me is accurate.

I would assume the weight involves extra framing of the exterior wall, floor reinforcement, tracks, the awning topper, trim, gaskets, etc, etc, and the differences in furniture.  The dinette weighs hardly anything.  I think the heavist thing is the table itself.

I'm hoping to get the numbers straight from the mothership on Monday.

The weight of the slide isn't as much of a concern as the CCC of the 2350 on the Sprinter.  From my reading, I know that many Sprinter-based RVs have a CCC similar to that of a family sedan -- about 1,000 pounds.  That's before subtracting the weight of any water in the tanks.  My wife and I and the bike & carrier will weigh about 720+ pounds so the CCC may become an issue.

I'll report back with anything I learn from Stuart.

Sherman
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« Reply #114 on: March 25, 2012, 03:39:51 pm »

Sherman:

i know you have spent a ton of energy and time researching your potential big puchase and for that I salute you. I realize that you have a budget and a certain size RV that you are targeting but i would be concenred that you are really backing yourself into a corner and I would worry that you are not going to be happy.  It sure appears that you have to get into at least a 25' rig to get what you appear to want and  need.  I have commented in the past regarding my feelings regarding the Sprinter chassis
All of us want to get as many MPG's as we can but I would really caution you about Sprinter MPG claims.....If you have full tanks, AC on, full wall slide,  tires at recmended pressure, cruise set at 65 MPH, 2 adults, two bikes on the back you will not break 14 MPG I never did in 10,000 miles of driving a 2009 Monaco Covina 3.0L.  I applaud you for doing the math regarding the CCC of the chassis and while you may be able to come in slighlthy under I will bet one of the axles will be over weight.  PC makes a super product and I would do whatever to find a model within the PC family that will work for you.  Best of luck.  Thanks
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« Reply #115 on: March 25, 2012, 06:31:03 pm »

Sherman:

i know you have spent a ton of energy and time researching your potential big puchase and for that I salute you. I realize that you have a budget and a certain size RV that you are targeting but i would be concenred that you are really backing yourself into a corner and I would worry that you are not going to be happy.  It sure appears that you have to get into at least a 25' rig to get what you appear to want and  need.  I have commented in the past regarding my feelings regarding the Sprinter chassis
All of us want to get as many MPG's as we can but I would really caution you about Sprinter MPG claims.....If you have full tanks, AC on, full wall slide,  tires at recmended pressure, cruise set at 65 MPH, 2 adults, two bikes on the back you will not break 14 MPG I never did in 10,000 miles of driving a 2009 Monaco Covina 3.0L.  I applaud you for doing the math regarding the CCC of the chassis and while you may be able to come in slighlthy under I will bet one of the axles will be over weight.  PC makes a super product and I would do whatever to find a model within the PC family that will work for you.  Best of luck.  Thanks

Thanks for the input ragoodsp.

It is tough to get all of the 'needs' and most of the 'wants' in one rig, that's for sure.  

It may sound funny but the most difficult purchase I've made prior to this was kitchen cabinets.  There dozens, if not hundreds, of mfrs.  Each mfr has multiple styles of cabinets.  Each style comes in a variety of types of wood.  Many of the different species of wood come in different finishes.  Almost all styles have several grades (quality levels).  _Then_ you get into the various sizes, types of shelves, dimensions, etc.  That warped my little brain -- and there were fewer variables and much less money involved.

At this point we do have a pretty good idea of our needs vs. our wants -- what we can live with and what we can't.  For example -- a walk-around queen would be nice, but we can deal with a corner bed -- especially if we have a comfortable second bed.  We have a CA King size Tempur-Pedic here at home, and we usually have a 135 pound Rottweiler between us so we might as well be in separate beds!

Another example might be the galley.  I really like the PC's galley design -- very sleek and upscale looking.  Nice countertop material with a large sink and stove.  I like the idea of having a relatively large smooth horizontal surface when the sink and/or stove isn't being used, and a place for the covers when they are.  That said, all we really _need_ is a functional galley.  Some simply are not.  Take the WGO View Profile/Navion iQ.  There's a lot to like about those rigs, but the galley sink is an absolute joke.  It's about the size of a water bowl for a large dog.  The cook top is the common two-burner one with the glass cover.  IIRC, the sink has a glass cover as well but neither are flush with the counter and both are hinged, so they are potentially in the way when open (if you want to use the area of the counter behind them).  Finally, the Profile/iQ has a single door fridge with a tiny "freezer".  That's pretty much a deal killer right there, because we both agree that a regular, dedicated freezer compartment is practically a necessity, since we plan to eat in most of the time.  

The shower is another area of compromise.  Sure, I'd like to have what I call the "Taj Mahal of class C RV showers" -- the one in the LTV Unity U24MB, but I can settle for an ordinary shower as long as I can turn around and stand up in it.  A shower _door_ (as opposed to a curtain) is a big plus.  I really like the showers with a tub base (like a dual-purpose utility sink).  I see PC puts one in the 2400 -- I wonder if we could get that in the 2350 -- another question for Stuart.  I'm not that tall (6'2") but I cannot stand up in the showers in several rigs including the LTV Serenity and the newer (2011 and up) Profile/iQ.  That's an example of something that (unfortunately) one often does not find out until after going to Hershey or some other RV show.  A unit may look good otherwise, but because few (if any) RV mfrs give the dimensions of their showers, the customer is left to find out that it's too small after (perhaps) spending quite a bit of time studying various models.  That can be aggravating.  Fortunately, I found that most are tall enough.

WRT to length -- my 25 foot limit is of course somewhat arbitrary, but I know that it is possible for my wife and I to get what we need, and a lot of what we want, in a rig under that length.  The PC 2350 and the LTV Unity U24IB are two examples.  It may be hard to find multiple rigs that length that are designed the way we'd like, but it is physically possible to fit what we need/want in an RV that size.  PC does it, so does LTV -- WGO could be a contender if they'd go back to the 2010 and earlier design and fix the galley.  There are a couple others as well -- all built on the Sprinter chassis.  Keep in mind, we started out at the very beginning looking at class B rigs, so a B+/C seems very spacious.

Length restrictions are another concern.  Most people say they haven't run into very many length restrictions on local roads, in national parks and forests, and in campgrounds -- but they do exist, and 25 feet seems to be a common number that pops up.  My wife and I used to go to the Southwest on vacation years ago -- we'd rent a vehicle (usually 4WD) and just drive around -- mainly AZ and NM.  We found many roads that had posted length restrictions (for good reason).  4WD was rarely (if ever) necessary, only high clearance -- but length was an issue, and sometimes width.  I don't plan to take our rig on the Rubicon Trail (we'll have the Enduro for that), but I don't want to be limited as to where we can go simply because of length.  We may encounter some length-related problems anyway, because of having the Enduro on the hitch mounted carrier we'll probably be around 27+ feet total.  

I know from my Internet travels that many RV owners have strong opinions about the chassis their rig is built on.  The most common by far of course is the Ford E-350/450 -- the Mercedes (Freightliner/Dodge) Sprinter is also becoming more popular.  Both have their advantages.  If a person wants maximum GVWR and GCWR, Ford is the way to go, hands down.  It's also easier to get a Ford-based RV serviced, although from what I've read, not as easy as say a Ford Focus.  Apparently some dealers won't or can't work on an E-350/450 chassis if there's an RV sitting on it.  I've never heard why this is, presumably they work on ambulances, etc.  There seems to be broad agreement that the Sprinter-based rigs are easier to drive, have a more comfortable ride, more room in the cockpit, and have more safety and convenience features.  They also cost a lot more, so they should.  My understanding is that they can be serviced at any Freightliner dealership and most Mercedes dealers, but Ford clearly has the advantage there.

If there were two identical coaches that we liked (say PC 2350s), one on the E-350 and the other on a Sprinter, there is obviously some price differential that would tip the scales toward the E-350.  In fact, I started a thread over on RV.net with this very idea in mind.  After seeing at the prices of the new and used Sprinter-based rigs I decided that a) they were pricy, and b) focusing exclusively on the Sprinter-based rigs was not in our best interest -- we might not see a coach we'd really like.  My hope was that I could find a RV on a Ford (or even GM) chassis -- preferably diesel -- that fit our needs/wants for a lot less than the Sprinter-based RVs.  No such luck.  The price difference seems relatively minor.    

That brings us to mileage.  There have been endless threads and posts dedicated to the subject.  Yes, it is a serious concern, but it certainly doesn't trump everything else.  I don't have personal experience with either chassis, but even if I did it would only be one person's experience.  I might go around unloaded with no toad drafting slow-moving semis or I might be towing a Hummer at 80 mph!  We've all seen what appear to be excessively high and low mileage claims.  Sometimes they may be true and due to unusual circumstances, sometimes the person may have miscalculated, and perhaps once in a while there is some 'writer's embellishment'.  In any case, over the 3 years or so (off and on) I've been researching RVs and reading posts in RV groups and forums, I've gotten a pretty good idea of the mileage the two chassis' typically get in normal use.  Obviously there are variables (speed being the big one) but most people will give the speed they typically drive, and most run 55/60 to 65 mph.  Almost all mileage figures are given without a toad, and if people do occasionally tow a vehicle they'll state their mileage when towing and usually give the type of vehicle.  Most mileage figures are calculated over an entire multi-thousand mile trip, or even over the entire time they've owned their rig.  Anyway, the bottom line is that the vast majority of people are getting 15 to 17 mpg with the V-6 Sprinter (the most common figure reported is 16 mpg) and 17 to 18.5+ with the I-5 Sprinter.  The E-350/450 gets about 8-8.5 to 10 mpg.  One interesting fact I like to point out is that Born Free (in Iowa) claims their rigs have won all of the national mileage competitions  (I wasn't aware there were mileage competitions for RVs...).  They use the E-350/450 exclusively and _brag_ that their RV (no model specified, presumably the smallest) gets 9.65 mpg at 55 mph.  They make a big deal of this in their literature and claim that no other mfr's RV can touch it.  I've never seen any other RV mfr make similar specific mileage claims, let alone refute Born Free's boast of being the mileage champ, so I assume that their claim is true.  9.65 mpg is, if anything, toward the higher end of the figures I've seen, but that is also at 55 mph.  At 55, the Sprinters would be at the high end of the range I gave -- about 17 and 19 respectively.  Close to double the mileage for the older I-5 Sprinter, and about 75% better for the newer V-6 chassis.  

I agree that PC makes a great RV -- that's why I'm spending as much time as I am thinking about the optimum layout for the 2350.  I'm hoping we can make the 2350 on the Sprinter chassis work.  I think we can, but I doubt we are going to be able to bring my prized rock collection along.  ;-)

Sherman
« Last Edit: March 25, 2012, 09:24:48 pm by sajohnson » Logged

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bigbadjc
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« Reply #116 on: March 25, 2012, 07:27:44 pm »

I have a Ford E350 PC 2551, 2006 model with a whopping 15,000 miles on it and kept indoors at all times.  Last year I took it from Arkansas to Lake Louise, Alberta, and back, about 5,500 miles.  We pull a Chevy HHR that limits us to 65 MPH to preserve the transmission in the HHR.  On that trip I averaged around 9.5 MPG towing @65 MPH, usually fighting a 20-30 MPH crosswind.  The worst mileage I got was about 8.5 MPG crossing the Canadian Rockies and the Continental Divide going west out of Lake Louise.  This is about as rigorous a road as you would be willing to drive an RV on. One stretch where we were crossing flat farm land across Nebraska netted about 12 MPG.  What I did not keep track of was where I used gasoline with ethanol and where I didn't.  Ethanol will reduce your MPG because it has less heat content per gallon than does the base gasoline.  One other personal thing I'll mention - I have used a local mechanic in the Hot Springs area who had a contract to maintain FEDEX delivery trucks.  When he started getting the Sprinters in he was NOT complimentary about their durability or ease of maintenance.  Could just be redneck loyalty to American vehicles, but it's what he said.  Also, the local Ford dealership here has no problems servicing my RV.  All they've had to do was routine maintenance, but they indicated they could handle anything chassis related.
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ragoodsp
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« Reply #117 on: March 26, 2012, 09:14:33 am »

BigbadJC:

I would have to say you are getting very good MPG with the E-350, I wish I was getting the same with the E-450!!  This chassis discussion will go on for ever,  I must agree that many dealerships including my local Dodge dealer are not overly impressed with the durability of the Sprinter chassis over time nor is Fed-X.  While I am a huge fan of the 3.0L M-B engine for I have one in my Jeep Grand Cherokee,  to say they are maintenance free is far from the truth, oil changes that I do myself cost over $140 (over $200 at the dealer)  and the fuel filter change is $106 at the dealer.  The 3.0L is and extremely complicated engine that throws codes very easily with the slightest variation from any of the many sensors.  I am not "in bed" with Ford since I once brought suit against Ford Motor Co. (won by the way) over many fuel pump issues in a F-53 chassis under a Holiday Rambler, I vowed then to never own another Ford product.  My expeience with the Sprinter chassis for one year and 10,000 miles drove me back to Ford, I never had any large issues with the Sprinter it was just that I always had the sense that the chassis was just being over worked from all aspects.  I am very happy with the performance of the E-450 and in particular with the PC coach.  While I fully realize that going 55 MPH in either a Ford or Sprinter chassis witll yield the best possible MPG I would seriously worry about ones safety on todays dual lane highways where the average MPH speed atleast here in New England is pushing 80 MPH.  To each his own,  and what makes our country so great is that we have choice in the marketpalce and everyone will make up their own minds.  I would love to hear what Kermit, Stuart and Kyle at PC say about the Sprinter based chassis since they could best make a comparison between the two chassis.   Thanks


 
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sajohnson
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« Reply #118 on: March 29, 2012, 06:14:57 pm »

I see my thread has had its tail chopped off!  ;-)

In an earlier post (on March 13) I wrote:

"What are some options that are worth looking for?  I was thinking about the: passenger swivel seat; leather; fantastic vent; insulated glass; back-up monitor; leveling jacks (weight may be an issue though); mirror w/ compass and outside temp; diesel generator.  Any suggestions/thoughts?"

There were some very thoughtful replies.  I'm not asking people to repeat themselves, but if anyone has anything they'd like to add that would be very helpful.

Another way of asking the question might be -- are there any options that you wish you would have gotten?  In particular, options that must be added at the factory (as opposed  to those which can be added later)?

If we were to order new, I'm thinking we'd pass on the mirror w/ compass and outside temp -- it seems expensive, and there are alternatives.

In that previous post, I went to write:

"I know diesel gensets can be louder than LP fueled ones, and they can be smelly.  The reason I'm considering one is to conserve LP.  Even with a larger LP tank it is an issue, and the PC rigs have relatively small 42 lb LP tanks."

Diesel gensets have serious drawbacks, but I really like the idea of leaving the LP for refrigeration, heat, hot water, and cooking.

Some people say they'd never have a diesel genset, no matter what. 

Any comments or opinions?

Thanks!

Sherman
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« Reply #119 on: March 29, 2012, 07:15:58 pm »


Some people say they'd never have a diesel genset, no matter what. 

Any comments or opinions?

Thanks!

Sherman

I had a 7.5 ONAN in the front of a 34' HR Ambassador, water cooled 3 cylinder.  No problems, not noisy at all, could not hear it in the rear of the coach.  It's another engine to maintain and fairly expensive.  Smell was no worse than the pusher diesel.  Never had a trouble code on it, can't say the same for the Cummins that was "outback".  Parts (filters) came from Cummins (do they own ONAN??) and they discount nothing for anyone near as I could tell.
Come to think about it the generator was "the" bright spot on that MH.  I'll stick with PC and the gas generator on mine.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2012, 07:17:43 pm by lghjr » Logged
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