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Old 02-28-2012, 03:56 AM   #21
scattershot
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Lots of good advice here. You will find that whatever you buy, you will find out what you like and don't like, and probably buy another one in a few years. My only advice would be to look at a bunch of them before you decide, and make sure that your tow vehicle can handle the weight. Oh, yeah. Stay away from Chinese tires, they are all junk.
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Old 02-28-2012, 01:41 PM   #22
CORattler
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A good post Stiles!
I agree. We thought at 1st that the fireplace was a frill but have come to count on it as an integrated part of our heating process for the Monty.

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by stiles watson

What you get in a fifth wheel is very, very personal. Everything is a trade off. Example: If you include a washer/dryer, either stacked or combo unit, you lose the space for something else. Since we fulltime, we find the w/d to be essential, but we lost the closet space to accommodate it.

We bought a new Big Sky off the dealer lot, so it already had a fireplace. Now I am happy we have it. I thought it was just a frill and virtually useless. I was wrong. It has become an integral part of our heating protocol saving us propane costs. On most winter days, it provides enough heat along with the ceramic heater for colder days.

Full timers have to take it all with them, so learning what you really need is essential. We continue to trim what we haul around. If it has been in the closet or drawer for over a year, you probably don't need it in the first place. Having the courage to get rid of "perfectly good" stuff is key to lightening the load.

For us, a double wide refrigerator is more important than the one extra foot of cabinet space. Even with the double wide, we have to plan what we are able to buy to fit the space.

One critical area for decision is the kitchen, particularly what kind of small appliances to include, i.e., blender, coffee maker, toaster oven, food processor, knife rack, electric skillet, crock pot, etc., and how you travel with your choices. A RV is not a 1500 or 2400 sq ft home, so the economy of scale must be different.

If you are a weekender or part timer, then you just plan the trip and put in what you need for that tour. You can swap out what you carry for the next trip. How you will use the RV will determine the considerations that challenge you. Remember, you don't have to justify your choices to anyone but yourselves. I have seen some posters that sound as if they have to do that. If it fits you, it is good.
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Old 03-04-2012, 06:13 PM   #23
Bill-N-Donna
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I would also like to reemphasize on the turning radius. When we first pulled out with our first fifth wheel even after being warned and cautioned about the turns it still took a little getting used to. We didnít have any major problems but I ran the wheels onto the curb when making a turn. So be very careful and watch really close on the turns.
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Old 03-15-2012, 04:07 AM   #24
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Everyone will have a different opinion on each option and capability based on their needs and likes. Other than an adequate tow vehicle, the BIGGEST mistake first time buyers make is not taking an experienced RVer with them when they do the delivery inspection/walkthrough at the dealership. The best time to get things fixed and corrected is before you take it off the lot. Buying trailers since 71, only once have I had a zero defect delivery. Example: when I picked up the 2010 (From a Camping World Dealership), everybody was so proud that the unit had been gone through front to rear. In 10 minutes, I found a torn seal, a missing bottom seal under one of the slides, a missing graphic on the front cap, and a hot water heater that would not fire up on Propane. So much for dealer prep.
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Old 03-15-2012, 06:19 PM   #25
db_engineer
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If you're used to a king bed at home, give serious consideration to going with the king bed option. Also, get a 50 amp surge suppressor, either the external type, or a hard wired one.
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Old 03-15-2012, 08:24 PM   #26
Art-n-Marge
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Great reminder db_engineer!!! Not all power pole electrical hookups are the same no matter how good the RV Park looks!

Besides a surge suppressor you might even want to upgrade to a good quality electrical protection system that either shuts down the supply if the voltage drops or automatically increases to keep things working correctly. Brown-outs in a rig (or anywhere else for that matter) can mean death to any device with a motor winding, like an A/C, fridge, W/D and other things I don't remember to list. Hopefully, others come along to mention these systems. I use a surge suppressor and brownout detector but wish I had a better system.
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Old 03-16-2012, 04:16 AM   #27
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by 1retired06

Everyone will have a different opinion on each option and capability based on their needs and likes. Other than an adequate tow vehicle, the BIGGEST mistake first time buyers make is not taking an experienced RVer with them when they do the delivery inspection/walkthrough at the dealership. The best time to get things fixed and corrected is before you take it off the lot. Buying trailers since 71, only once have I had a zero defect delivery. Example: when I picked up the 2010 (From a Camping World Dealership), everybody was so proud that the unit had been gone through front to rear. In 10 minutes, I found a torn seal, a missing bottom seal under one of the slides, a missing graphic on the front cap, and a hot water heater that would not fire up on Propane. So much for dealer prep.
X2 on this one. Our dealer was attempting to deliver our unit with a cracked leg on the landing gear. Hard to spot that kind of stuff if it's your first time, there's just too much to deal with. Also the point about watching the trailer on corners is a good one, but the curbs don't do the damage the pylons at the gas pumps do. Pulling up to the pump it's easy to forget the trailer when you're trying to line up for the hose. Those giant concrete pylons wouldn't be there if folks didn't hit them.
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Old 03-16-2012, 06:13 AM   #28
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Go plastic on dishes wherever possible. Tumblers, plates, mixing bowls,,,,,,, Glass breaks and pottery weighs a tons.
Think about how you plan to use your RV. Vacations for a week and weekends or months at a time. Makes a BIG difference on what you'll be comfortable with size wise.
One thing I wish I had known when I bought mine, long term use with carpet is a pain. Wish I had gone with a laminate floor in main traffic areas.
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Old 03-17-2012, 12:29 AM   #29
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by Earthcreeper

We are just about ready to pull the trigger on buying our first fifth wheel and we think Montana is the way to go. What I am unsure of is what are the mistakes the first time buyers make? Size? 2AC units or not? On and on. We are looking at the 3100RL. We like the floor plan and admittedly the storage is not huge but we like to added rolling island option for additional storage and are considering no fireplace to make even more storage. I also wonder, how do we handle computing and location a printer in a coach with no desk. Anyone out there have a 3100RL with some hands-on information? All feedback from any of you veteran MO's would be greatly appreciated.

In addition, we have a Chevy 2500HD Duramax 6.5" box. Do we need a slide? Do we need airbags? Advice please.
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Old 03-17-2012, 12:30 AM   #30
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by Earthcreeper

We are just about ready to pull the trigger on buying our first fifth wheel and we think Montana is the way to go. What I am unsure of is what are the mistakes the first time buyers make? Size? 2AC units or not? On and on. We are looking at the 3100RL. We like the floor plan and admittedly the storage is not huge but we like to added rolling island option for additional storage and are considering no fireplace to make even more storage. I also wonder, how do we handle computing and location a printer in a coach with no desk. Anyone out there have a 3100RL with some hands-on information? All feedback from any of you veteran MO's would be greatly appreciated.

In addition, we have a Chevy 2500HD Duramax 6.5" box. Do we need a slide? Do we need airbags? Advice please.
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Old 03-18-2012, 10:12 AM   #31
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I just want to add that if you want to save big bucks and do some add ons yourself, there are alot of used 5th wheels for sale with little use nad still under warranty. Yes buy better tires.
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Old 03-25-2012, 05:07 AM   #32
jetenbu
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Just a little on tires. My friend and I have been doing some research on tires for our Montana's. We came up with looking at Hancook tires 235/85 R16 G rated as a good replacement. If anyone has another suggestion, I would be very interested in knowing at it and if possible, your experience with them. Thanks for all the above suggestions. I am lucky that so far I have not forgotten any of these suggestions. I sure am glad I did a lot of research before buying my 5th wheel. I personally do not believe you can beat the Montana's for quality, workmanship, reliability, price, etc. I recommend Montana's to everyone that asks what 5th wheel to buy. I love mine.
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Old 03-25-2012, 05:16 AM   #33
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by jetenbu

If anyone has another suggestion, I would be very interested in knowing at it and if possible, your experience with them.
Jim, a lot of folks here go with the Goodyear G614's - the tire you get if you order a Big Sky (and should be stock on all the larger Montana's in my opinion).
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Old 03-25-2012, 10:50 AM   #34
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Do any of you have a practical solution for a tonneau cover or is that just something you do without with a 5th wheel? I had a "FlipBak" on my F150 and it was great but this is a different animal. In addition, do any of you have a storage box in the pickup toward the front for holding tools and so on? Or, are they in the way when hitched up to the fifth wheel?
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Old 03-25-2012, 03:40 PM   #35
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We have the rol-n lock cover on the truck. its pricey but I took it off the 2006 and put it on the 2011 and it fit great. It stops about 5 dif spots so I leave ours covered bed about 16" so its just in front of the hitch. I have the pull rite hitch and love it , it slides even when I don't think I need it , sailer
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Old 03-25-2012, 03:51 PM   #36
seahunter
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by Earthcreeper

Do any of you have a practical solution for a tonneau cover or is that just something you do without with a 5th wheel? I had a "FlipBak" on my F150 and it was great but this is a different animal.
I went with a TruXedo Lo Pro QT Tonneau Cover. This is my first tonneau cover, but I looked at a few and liked the installation set-up on this one - although I've been too busy to install it yet
Figured when I'm not towing, just keep the cover on and keep the weather off the hitch.
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Old 05-23-2012, 03:36 PM   #37
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On our 3500RL, we replaced the huge tv above our fireplace with a flat-screen surface mounted. After taking the tv out, I found a large comartment behind it. I cut the side panel between the tv and desk top. Was able to place a 15" X 15" X 17" deep w/slide-out tray compartment/shelf for our printer. When prnter not traveling, we use it for our DVD's. Will try to add pics later, have trouble doing that, lol.
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Old 05-24-2012, 04:10 AM   #38
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Joe, while I am new to the forum, I am not to towing or to a 5'ver. I just purchased the 3402RL-the heaviest Montana short of going to a BigSky. I also tow with a D/A combination. When loaded my truck sits perfectly level with no suspension mods at all. As far as towing goes, you have absolutely NO worries with your truck. That 6 speed Allison is what makes the job so easy for your truck. Keep up the maintenance and it will gladly continue to deliver for you. I agree with many here-make sure you have enough room for your needs. Most of us will keep our Montana's for some time unless we didn't get what we wanted. If you can afford it, get everything you want and then some.
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Old 05-25-2012, 03:35 AM   #39
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Thanks Kevin. When traveling we do find the transmission does not shift into 6th gear hardly at all. I do turn off the trailer mode, shift to manual mode and kick it into 6th gear, then put it back to d and then turn on trailer mode again. Trying to save fuel. Seems trying at best. I am unsure if I should keep doing this, turn trailering off and turn on exhaust brake instead or just leave it in 4th & 5th gears.

I finally got the Montana level. I have a 2900 ISR SuperGlide. I was able to get a lower set of feet for it that lowered the height by 1.5" That made the difference. I really like the autos slide.
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Old 05-25-2012, 03:31 PM   #40
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We have a 2012 3100 RL we took deliver of this Feb. We are weekend warriors at present. Have been out 6 times so far this year. The fireplace has been great for supplemental heat. The second ac unit is nice to be able to run bed room unit while in living area and living room unit at night. We measure 13' 4" to second ac unit. Just be aware...12" 9" with out ac unit. The leveling system is great. I wasn't going to order unit with it but the floor model we bought had it and I am glad. This is our first Monty and second fifth wheel. So far it is a great unit. It has met or exceeded our expectations in every area. Only thing I would change with our unit is we don't have the Gen prep included. Good luck.
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