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Old 01-14-2016, 07:56 AM   #101
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"Quick question for you RV guys. Advantages or disadvantages of a class A vs a 5th wheel."

Its more a matter of RV lifestyle style.

A 5th wheel is great for folks escaping for a vacation TO someplace.
A winter in Fl or AZ , drag the beast down , set it up and for a week or a season , you have a home and transportation.

The class A is better for road touring , esp if not too large, UPS trucks are everywhere so that is about a good size for city & country travel 24 Ft
.We do now have a 35ft coach , but I have been RVing for 20+ years , so have NO FEAR!of city traffic.

We have parked curbside at meters all over CA with a 22 class A and pay no additional expense in parking lots like the Alamo .

USA touring can be inexpensive if you travel early and eat lunch in the town of the day.

Head out of town about 2 -3pm and hit the next campsite with little traffic
We are recovering New Yorkers so visit small towns and cities , rather than go watch the grass grow.
Different Strokes,,,,,,,,

**********

"We (particularly me) are fond of traveling on trains in Europe: the "civilized" way to travel on land. Costs are reasonable in Europe; not so much in the USA."

US too!

In Europe we take a train to a new town for 3 or 4 days

6AM breakfast , to an early train to arrive at the next town about noon ,check in hotel , go tour.

Explore the town and next AM after breakfast take a local bus out 15-40 miles to a place or town of interest ,return for dinner at home plate.

The next day do it again in a different direction.

Euro Room and train reservations are a snap on line , so its a nice effortless way to see more than a tour would allow.
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Old 01-14-2016, 08:24 AM   #102
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Capt. Tim, not having a class A or a 5er, i will weigh in on another perspective. Size matters, and not in the usual way. The larger the unit the more restricted you will be to some of the best most secluded campsites. For instance, I like to fish mountain streams for trout. To get a good site by a flowing stream that is secluded is what I look for. Sometimes I wish my TT was smaller.

That being said, get the smallest unit that will fit your needs.
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Old 01-14-2016, 08:58 AM   #103
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That being said, get the smallest unit that will fit your needs.
Thanks Don, not in the market right now, just getting info. Being use to a 35 Carver which has tons of room for a 35' boat it seems we will feel crowded in any size RV.
I've heard 32' is the largest most national parks can handle.
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Old 01-14-2016, 09:08 AM   #104
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"I've heard 32' is the largest most national parks can handle."

Most of the rules were made in the 1950s , when towing an Airstream behind your Caddy was the norm.30 ft and 22 of car was about it.

Blue Bird lied about its 31 ft WanderLodges (called them 30) to ease the hassle.

The new extra high RV are a bigger hassle as many trees must be trimmed to get by.

In a few places the long wheelbase (with no hinge in the middle) and narrow road has caused very careful driving .
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Old 01-14-2016, 09:45 AM   #105
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Quick question for you RV guys. Advantages or disadvantages of a class A vs a 5th wheel.
Tim...
Just like boats different styles abound and satisfy different styles & preferences. Most Cl A can tow a sm car for easy & economical daily travel vs 5er usually needing a hefty diesel truck...sometimes duelly just to travel around.
Visit a campground and observe both pulling in and setting up...there is a difference but whether it's an issue depends on your RV travel style.
Cl A can easily tow a runabout \ fishing boat if that's desirable...not so easy in most states w a 5er
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Old 01-14-2016, 09:56 AM   #106
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I notice one distinct difference between the US and much of the rest of the world. It's not surprising. We have bigger homes. In RV'ing, I notice the tremendous popularity of Caravans in Europe and in Australia, while in the US they are a very small part of the RV world.
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Old 01-14-2016, 12:11 PM   #107
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There are lots of guides that will tell you if the destination you have in mind has a size or other limits. So far, they have been accurate where we have gone. We have explored State parks and have so far found none that failed to have at least some spaces big enough for our 44' plus 20' tow.

One of the places we like to stay on our repeat trips heading south is a winery that has enough parking and has joined a group to attract RVs. Get there before the tasting room closes, stock up for the stay in the US. Stopping on the way home to Canada doesn't work as well, as limits at the border discourage stocking up.

As for differences between Class A and 5th wheel, in the very biggest 5th wheels, they are less evident, except for the size of the towing vehicle. Some are towed by Freightliner Tractors modified to remove one set of rear wheels. Then you are stuck driving a huge vehicle to go to the grocery store. Smaller 5ths, are just that, smaller. You can be quite comfy in one that can be hauled by a Ford F150.
A Class A can tow, depending again on size, from a Smart car to a Hummer (have seen many of each). Some guys where we are haul a stacker trailer with the Vette, Pickup and Razer all in an enclosed space. All depends how much you want to haul.

Then there are parks that restrict: Class A only with minimum sizes (where we are), Class A and 5th only with minimum sizes, to no restrictions. Depends what you are looking for.

All of this info is in the guides.
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Old 01-14-2016, 12:40 PM   #108
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The thread seems to be drifting from Steve9506's inquiry about moving from motorhome to trawler (via sale or swap), to motorhomes, 5th wheels, trains, planes, etc.

Steve's reason, and to BandB's point, being on the water is the attraction and the #1 reason for being on the boat. To quote Melville's Moby Dick... "Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul... then I account it high time to get to sea as soon as I can".
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Old 01-14-2016, 12:55 PM   #109
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Quick question for you RV guys. Advantages or disadvantages of a class A vs a 5th wheel.
Quick question, not so quick answer. We started with a fifth wheel, moved to a class A, and then moved back to a fifth wheel. An obvious difference is the engine, which should be run periodically. This impacts suitability for long stays in the same location. A fifth wheel trailer can be easily backed while hitched. You may need to disconnect your toad (towed car) to back a motorhome. Another difference is back-in vs pull-in, which affect your access to and views at different locations.

Less obvious differences are found after you live with both for a while. For example, if staying longer where temperatures are cooler, the built in propane tank of many motorhomes must be driven to the fill location. Where we are currently in Anacortes, delivery requires 100 gallons or more and extension tanks are not allowed on the ground. Some have mounted them on receiver hitch racks with connecting adapters and the subsequent risk of leaks. (A Newmar dealer refused to install an adapter on ours because of this.) So, pack everything in, drive around, fill, come back, and set back up again. That can get old quick. By comparison, most fifth wheels have smaller removable tanks. We have two 40 pound tanks in ours. So, one can continue in use while we remove the other to refill it. Of course, that means having to lift the filled tank back into position. Thankfully, I can still do that. Some campgrounds can deliver or pick up your removable tank for refill. Thus, the importance of this may vary with your usage. Another difference is in floor plans. It's difficult to find a motorhome that has a decent desk. The 43' Newmar we had had a desk that was part of the dinette. That became problematic when I didn't always put my computers away after work, preventing use of the dinette part for dining. For a pull-in site with a view, the front seats of a motorhome are great. Backing in to a similar view with a fifth wheel may require rotating the recliners at the rear. Another difference is in how you respond to noise. With a fifth wheel traveling down the road, any movement in the trailer is isolated from the tow vehicle. With a motorhome, you can hear movement in the cabinets, microwave, etc. as they are in the same airspace not far behind your seat. While not usually a problem, it can be worrying to some.

With the basement pass-throughs, motorhomes can have quite a bit of storage. However, our 38' fifth wheel with a (rare) rear basement has more storage than our 43' motorhome had. With the motorhome, we lost some storage space for the driving area and some more storage space for the engine. The front storage areas of the fifth wheel are often taller than the basement storage areas of the motorhome. Some motorhomes have their storage attached to the slides. That will affect both their size and their heatability in winter compared with in-basement storage.

Common features can be things like hydraulic leveling, very handy. Something else to think about a slide toppers, the awning that extends out over the room slide-outs. In very leafy areas, these can hep prevent leaves from accumulating on the tops of the slides. However, in very windy areas, these can be torn. The main slide topper on our 43' Newmar tore one winter in Anacortes and had to be replaced. Our Carriage fifth wheel does not have slide toppers. But, it's slides do not have a vertical lip on the outside to catch things. So, leaves brush off when the slides are pulled in.

As you can see, there are quite a few pros/cons both between them and with individual features. For exploring this more in depth, I recommend checking the Escapees RV club forum at rvnetwork.com or a more general forum like irv2.com.
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Old 01-14-2016, 01:33 PM   #110
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Most Cl A can tow a sm car for easy & economical daily travel vs 5er usually needing a hefty diesel truck...sometimes duelly just to travel around.
Visit a campground and observe both pulling in and setting up...there is a difference but whether it's an issue depends on your RV travel style.
Cl A can easily tow a runabout \ fishing boat if that's desirable...not so easy in most states w a 5er
The newer diesel pickup trucks have higher ratings than before. For example, our 1-ton SRW Ram is rated for 17K while our 38' fifth wheel maxes at just under 16K. It's a balance. I love our SRW Ram, but would not want a dually or larger for a daily driver. My wife has had both knees replaced. With the power steps, it is easier for her to get in and out our Ram that it was the Jeep we towed behind the Newmar. With our current setup, there is only the one engine to maintain and at lower cost.

Some of the setup differences are due to campground layout. Both have water, sewer, electric, but the location of the connections vary (as does the experience of the camper). That location difference affects how you need to position your rig within the site. With hydraulic levelers, actual setup of the coach/trailer is not too different. Then, the biggest difference comes to disconnecting/parking the toad or the tow vehicle. Once you get used to it, it can go quickly. My typical setup time is less than half an hour. With the Unified tow brake setup on the Newmar/Jeep flat-tow combination, that was similar. Pulling out all of your lifestyle accessories on the inside can take longer than setting up the outside.
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Old 01-14-2016, 01:50 PM   #111
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Out of curiosity I looked to see the size of the RV market. In 2014, there were 357,000 units sold in the US. Apparently there longevity is very good as they also estimate that over 9 million households own an RV.

By comparison, 532,000 recreational boats were sold in the US in 2013. 15.8 million boats were estimated in use in the US in 2014.

Now the vast majority of recreational boats are not cruisers and not capable of overnight trips so the number that you could compare to RV's would be much smaller and considerably fewer "sleep overnight" boats than RV's.

So the facilities for RV's, the information for RV owners is wide spread and very good. The numbers above are before you even consider the number of campers in the country.

Camping World and Marcus Lemonis are promoting that market well too from Nascar Racing to their Good Sam Club which seems to be very much their equivalent of Boat US. One huge different. Good Sam has over 1.6 million members vs. Boat US of just over 500,000.

Both industries were hit hard in 2008-2009 but both are definitely thriving now.
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