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Old 09-17-2019, 09:21 PM   #1
SirCampsalot
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High Country RV Comparison

We are looking at the HC 294rl as about 12-15k savings from a Montana. I can see the difference 10" frame cable drive slides elec auto level, no frameless windows unless opt for DP. Other than the obvious how do you feel about the overall quality compared to the Montana?
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Old 09-18-2019, 11:32 AM   #2
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we have a 340bh bought new two years ago, so far we have been very happy. with any rv you need to be a little handy to take care of minor issues. but fit,finish,function we are happy
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Old 09-18-2019, 11:34 AM   #3
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There is a difference, but it depends on what you want out of your rig. If you're a weekender then you have you're choice. For me, as a full timer, I feel that I need the extras that a Montana has. Everything from the better frame to better tires all make a difference when you add as much weight as a full timer adds.
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Old 09-18-2019, 12:04 PM   #4
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I think the new 294HL has a great floor plan. I am surpised that it doesn't have Frameless windows. Our HC does. The HC's are also warranted for full time use but we don't have any experience with that so can't speak to that kind of durability. We go a week here and there and are planning some other trips that will be a few weeks at a time.

So far we really like our HC. If we wanted to pay more we would have likely considered the higher Montana lines but our budget choices kept those out of our decision. Time will tell if the decision was a good one. But there are many HC owners who still love their rig after several years.
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Old 09-18-2019, 01:05 PM   #5
SirCampsalot
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Originally Posted by jsb5717 View Post
I think the new 294HL has a great floor plan. I am surpised that it doesn't have Frameless windows. Our HC does. The HC's are also warranted for full time use but we don't have any experience with that so can't speak to that kind of durability. We go a week here and there and are planning some other trips that will be a few weeks at a time.

So far we really like our HC. If we wanted to pay more we would have likely considered the higher Montana lines but our budget choices kept those out of our decision. Time will tell if the decision was a good one. But there are many HC owners who still love their rig after several years.
Hey Jeff thanks for the reply. You mentioned your 305 has frameless. I do see the option if dual pane is selected as a option then they do come as frameless today. Are your windows DP or were the frameless just standard in '18?
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Old 09-18-2019, 01:21 PM   #6
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Ours aren't DP but whether they were standard or not I'm not sure. That's just the way they came when we bought this one off the lot...we didn't order one. I just did a quick scan for HC on RV Trader and saw both kinds. It must be an option and likely some dealers opt for them when buying their stock.

A couple weeks ago we camped next to a couple with a 2019 HC. There's didn't have frameless windows either.
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Old 09-18-2019, 02:02 PM   #7
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We bought our 2020 High Country 331rl earlier this year. It does not have the frameless windows. Our previous camper had frameless and honestly, we are thrilled to have regular windows this time! you can get so much more of a breeze with them, compared to the kick out on the frameless. I know you can always turn on your fan, but I love that I can slide these big windows open and catch a really nice breeze!


We are going on just our third trip this weekend with it and can't wait to get out there. I looked at everything from the regular Montana, to the Solitudes, Pinnacle and North Points. I feel like for the money, the High Country is hard to beat! That and I was able to keep my truck!
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Old 09-18-2019, 07:52 PM   #8
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Our HC has frameless single pane windows.

We never even considered the big brother due to weight constrictions and cost. We've had our share of problems as many others do. All fixable. I think one of the big differences is the type of interiors between the two. The wood used, maybe furniture, flooring and roofing thickness, and the such.

A month ago we met a couple who had the exact same year and model as us. They were pulling with a mid 2000's Chevy 2500. He estimated that since '14 they had pulled their 305 about 75,000 problem free miles.
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Old 09-18-2019, 08:10 PM   #9
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We like our HC as well.
For us it was a weight based decision as we have the RAM Mega Cab which has reduced payload due to the cab and we wanted to stay with SRW.

We also not full-time than we would go for a different setup for sure

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Old 09-18-2019, 09:33 PM   #10
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At the time we bought our High Country 381TH it was all about the floor plan. They didn't offer the floor plan in a full Montana (or anything else for that matter). If we had known that we would be full time for work, we would have bought a higher grade (IE: Montana) for sure. It suited us well as weekend warriors and quality wise it is even ok full time but there are a few perks and options I would have looked at differently (like a larger double vanity bathroom and bigger area for washer/dryer. And of course when you are full timing the quality of build becomes much more important and you can justify the extra cost.


Now that we are full time (for work) and certainly when we retire it will either be a Full Montana (especially if they come up with a wide body version of the 381TH floor plan or we will opt to go with either a New Horizon full custom $$ and tow the toys in an enclosed trailer or go full out with a big $$$$$ Class A diesel pusher pulling a two story toy trailer. I lean fairly strongly towards the New Horizon even though that means the wife would have to pull the toys. Basically we plan to winter in Florida and spend most of the summer staying a month or so at each stop traveling maybe a days drive between (IE: one year do the East one year do the West). Then again Silverton Colorado looked really nice to stay a lot longer......Point is though that the wife wouldn't have to tow every day or even once a week.


One big advantage to the full out custom New Horizon 5th wheel is I could finally get the next evolution of my 381 idea built. I have the idea of raising the kitchen floor level with the front living room and rear bedroom and have the basement under there added to the garage area. That would give us MASSIVE storage and we would be able to carry more toys of course. While it wouldn't carry everything it would most likely be enough on most trips and would eliminate the toy box enclosed trailer.
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Old 09-19-2019, 08:37 PM   #11
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Full time in our HC 331RL for 1 1/2 years No major problems A few minor problems circuit board in furnace replaced under warranty, shelf and hanger rod in front closet broke loose Like the floor plan better than anything the full Montana offered. Lighter weight so did not have to get a new truck. Towed about 17,000 miles. Love it
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Old 09-21-2019, 03:30 PM   #12
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I believe the cabinets in HC are veneer(sp?) and solid in the Montana. Some other cosmetic things.
At the Rally, I had a laugh. The 2 Keystone guys came to do minor interior stuff. As soon as they stepped in the door, they both sort of Ooooed and awed about the solid cabinets (at least the doors). I have a 2013 Mountaineer, which I consider the parent to the HC line.
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Old 09-21-2019, 04:52 PM   #13
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Full timers and Long timers have different needs in a 5th wheel as long timers traveling many miles and spending a lot of time living in the RV we chose the Montana twice. We had 4 previous RV 's all of then TT's used as weekend campers.
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Old 09-21-2019, 06:22 PM   #14
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Full timers and Long timers have different needs in a 5th wheel as long timers traveling many miles and spending a lot of time living in the RV we chose the Montana twice. We had 4 previous RV 's all of then TT's used as weekend campers.
Yep that is pretty much where we are on things.
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Old 09-25-2019, 05:25 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by SirCampsalot View Post
We are looking at the HC 294rl as about 12-15k savings from a Montana. I can see the difference 10" frame cable drive slides elec auto level, no frameless windows unless opt for DP. Other than the obvious how do you feel about the overall quality compared to the Montana?
Our 2015 has been great.
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Old 09-25-2019, 05:51 PM   #16
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Our 2018 331R has been great...….frameless windows but not dual pain. Like our dual sinks in the bathroom. We fulltime and have no regrets!
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Old 09-25-2019, 06:42 PM   #17
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I bought my HC not because it was cheaper but because it was the best camper for me. The cable slides are a great way the move the slides when it’s done right. The cable slides or the hydraulic slides are done wrong both give problems. If a cable breaks I can fix it with stuff I can carry in my pocket. I need a cable repair kit and a piece of 5/64 cable I carry with me. Try that with a hydraulic system. They both haft to be done right to be reliable.
My HC weighs at least a ton less than a 36 foot Montana. I do like that. All the appliances water system is like the Montana.
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Old 09-25-2019, 07:18 PM   #18
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I bought my HC not because it was cheaper but because it was the best camper for me. The cable slides are a great way the move the slides when itís done right. The cable slides or the hydraulic slides are done wrong both give problems. If a cable breaks I can fix it with stuff I can carry in my pocket. I need a cable repair kit and a piece of 5/64 cable I carry with me. Try that with a hydraulic system. They both haft to be done right to be reliable.
My HC weighs at least a ton less than a 36 foot Montana. I do like that. All the appliances water system is like the Montana.
Lynwood

Like Lynwood we bought our HC381TH because it was the best floor plan for us (at the time we bought it at least). And while I agree that it is easier to repair cable slides, I have to say I firmly believe that Hydraulic slides and definitely Hydraulic leveling is far superior (IF as Lynwood says they are both done right).

Where I do respectfully disagree with Lynwood is on the weight. Granted from the towing only aspect a lighter load is a good thing but that is about the only good part about it. 99.9% of the time lighter means less or lighter building materials and that directly relates to quality and sturdiness of constructions. I have absolutely no doubt that the Montana weighs more because it is built stronger. I will in a heart beat trade a lighter tow weight for a stronger build! In fact, if we don't go Class A when we retire we are looking very hard at New Horizon 5th wheels EXACTLY because of their heavier weight and superior build strength. And that is in spite of the fact that we will likely have to move up to an even larger tow vehicle due to that added weight.

Lets face it, the buying public in some degree is responsible for trailers being built that are not as strong as they used to be. Some folks demanded lighter trailers so they wouldn't have to buy larger tow trucks (IE: the no 1 ton duallies crowd). The RV industry responded with lighter 5th wheels. How do you think they made them lighter?
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Old 09-25-2019, 08:32 PM   #19
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I don't disagree that when it comes to our RV's that more weight is a direct result of beefier materials which will translate into more strength. While there's something comforting and satisfying about it I'm not convinced that an addition of strength automatically translates into a greater camping experience or even the longevity of the use of the rig.

I built my deck at home using 2 x 12 joists. For the size and span I really only needed 2 x 8's. My deck is solid as a rock but I don't think that using the heavier materials will translate into a longer lasting deck. It certainly doesn't change the way we use it or our enjoyment of it.

Seems to me that the lighter trailers can last as well and be enjoyed as long as the heavier models for most people. There may be some applications that would benefit from the heavier builds but for most of us it likley won't make any difference in the long run. I don't see anyone on this forum with trailers 20 years old so given the amound of time it appears that most of us use them it seems to be a wash.

For us the decision was about budget and the kind of quality we could buy for what we were willing to spend. So far it seems to have been a good choice.
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Old 09-25-2019, 09:59 PM   #20
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If you aren't living in it full time (no house to run home to or no house to stay in while major issues happen), then most people can get by with much simpler or lower tier trailers, gas class a's, travel trailers, and class c units. Whether they wish to is a choice they can make. If I could have afforded a custom or semi-custom fifth wheel in the quality level higher than the montana, I would have went that way in a heartbeat. Couldn't, so I went with the montana and started to upgrade things to make it better. If you can fulltime in a teardrop trailer, then I say good for you. Enjoy life, travel the country, grow.
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