Hello Guest!

Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.


Messages - sajohnson

Pages: 1 2 [3] 4 5 ... 7
31
To be totally fair, not all Ford dealers will work on motorhomes. The dealer in Columbia and Silver Spring will not work on them, but the Mt. Airy will do some minor maintance if you plead with them. Frederick will do anything and everything Ford related to them. Given where you live this might be your closest dealer.

My concern would be when traveling, and I have a chassis problem, will I be able to find a serving dealer within a reasonable distance. This goes for any motorhome chassis including the big boys.

The Frederick Motor Co. is 6 miles from our house -- that's where I bought my car (they sell Subarus also).  That's a good sized facility and very old -- almost 100 years I think.

The service issue is definitely a concern for RVs in general, and particularly the Sprinter.  IIRC, someone on the V-N Yahoo group figured that worst case a Sprinter-based RV owner might find themselves 300 or 400 miles from a service facility.

Of course when assessing risk, it's important to look at the probability as well as the severity of the risk.  It is human nature for all of us to assign wildly varying degrees of weight to various risks that we all face.  The _probability_ of something happening is often disregarded.  Take people who have phobias -- the risk of stepping outside and being bitten by a rattlesnake or a spider is pretty remote for most of us, but there are people who obsess about that. 

I'm not sure that's comparable to getting service on a Sprinter-based RV, but I'm sure you see what I'm getting at.  Yes, it certainly possible that a person might need a 250-300+ mile tow to a service facility, but how likely is it that any modern vehicle will become completely disabled?  Most, including the Sprinter, are pretty reliable these days.  If that does happen, it probably won't be more than once or twice in the first say 100K miles.  If/when it happens, what are the chances that the person will be in the absolute worst spot in the US, or more than say 150 miles from a service facility?

I'm not saying it's not an important consideration -- it is, even more so than with the Ford-based RVs -- just that in the overall scheme of things it doesn't seem to warrant the amount of attention and weight some people give it.

Now, having said that, we will of course suffer total engine failure in Minot, ND.  ;-)

Sherman

32
Sherman -- back to ya -- I have jacks on my Sprinter, and although new, they seem to function well -- used several times so far.  Also, the milage is based one one trip of 1600 miles - 4 or 5 tanks and mostly interstate driving - I covered this previously, so won't beat a dead horse.

All that said, I heartily agree with others -- go buy something - but buy what YOU want, not what WE think you should have!!! :)  Good luck, and I hope to see you in your new PC stop by on the way to the beach!!!!
Jack

Thanks Jack, that's good to hear.  I've read many similar posts over at the View-Navion Yahoo group.  No complaints about the jacks/levelers, with the exception of the added weight -- particularly with the early model (2006-'07) I-5 Sprinter with the softer suspension and lower CCC.

It's easy to buy something -- I'm finding it harder to find what we want, but we will.  ;-)

We'd love to stop by and see you -- even if we don't have a rig yet.  We have family coming from Iowa the beginning of June and I know we'll be going to the beach with them.

33
Sherman the only sofa with the drawer was the one with the air bed. The air mattress that came with our 2010 2350 was not very good. We ended up buying a $200 mattress that was much better and a whole lot more comfortable, still not the best bed for long term use.

As for storage, don't worry about it. When we bought our 2350 we were downsizing from a 35' Winnie class A with basement storage.  I was amazed at how much stuff we put into the little PC. What happened was, it made us think about how much stuff we really needed to carry all the time. For example if we are going to Lancaster for the weekend, we don't carry the Weber grill (Q100) as we eat out for most of our meals. This saved space for shopping stuff and weight on the way up there. The only thing we had a problem with was the folding chairs for outside. If you search here you will find many different ways that people have come up with to store their chairs. I bought some overpriced chairs that fit laying down over the outside drawer. When I picked up the new 2552 I found out that the depth of that cabinet is shorter and the chairs would not lay flat, but they do stand up OK. I  put some L brackets in the side wall that keeps them from sliding and trying to escape out the door. You will find that there is more than enough storage inside for a weeks worth of food, cokes and clothes. Beer depends on you. After that hit a laundry and a grocery store to resupply. I understand that you live in a 100 year old house, so you are not used to large walk-in closets like some people. If you get a Sprinter weight will be far more important that storage. I am with Stuart on which chassis is best, but to each his own. That is why they make different ones.
You better hurry up and get a PC because you are missing out on some great times RVing.

Thanks Tom, good to hear from you!

Yep, I think it's safe to say that the air mattress was a 'live and learn' situation for the RV mfrs that use/used them.

I suppose the storage situation is similar to with a house.  Any available space will be filled.  Nature abhors a vacuum.  I think we'll be fine, and your post reinforces that.  My primary concern with any sofa/bed or dinette/bed is that it is comfortable (in both 'modes') or at the very least, the bed can be made comfortable with a memory foam topper.  Extra storage is always welcome but I certainly wouldn't get the sofa/bed with the air mattress just for the storage!  ;-)

I'd like to see how you have the chairs stored -- either photos or in person (I'm having a hard time envisioning it).

You're certainly correct about our lack of walk-in closets (we have a grand total of one closet, upstairs).  In fact, any PC coach has more headroom than the second floor of our house -- well, measuring to the bottom of the attic floor joists anyway.  People must have been much shorter back then...  ;-)



34
I spoke with Sandy at M-B in NJ (877-762-8267).

She told me that 13 states are "exclusive" WRT warranty work: AR; CO; DE; FL; LA; NH; NJ; NY; OR; TX; UT; VT;  and WI.

Exclusive means that warranty work must be done by a dealer for the specific brand, M-B for M-B or Freightliner for Freightliner.

The other 37 states are not exclusive and M-B can do warranty work for Freightliner and vice versa.  This might explain the confusion regarding whether or not warranty work can be done by either M-B or Freightliner.

Out of warranty work can obviously be done by any qualified shop.

Sandy gave me the number of certified Sprinter repair facilities for each of four regions in the US:

N.E.:

F: 17
M-B: 29

Southern:

F: 18
M-B: 38

Western:

F: 10
M-B: 31

Central:

F: 16
M-B: 30

When I asked about which dealers will work on Sprinter chassis with a RV on them -- she said as long as the rig will fit into the shop they'll work on it.

Sherman    

35
I bought a perfect condition 2006 PC 2551 that was 4 years old with 4K miles and had been regularly maintained and stored inside.  It was a great bargain.  However, there are two things I've come to regret.  The first is the non-HD TV and cheap entertainment center and the other is storage space. The electric sofa has NO storage available under it.  The power mechanism takes up all the space.  I don't know what the current models have, but the older models with electric sofa beds had no drawer under the sofa.

Jerry

Thanks Jerry, that's the kind of info I need!

I don't want to get hyper-focused on the storage issue, but it does seem to be a concern many people have -- especially with the relatively small rigs.

WRT the TV, would it be difficult to replace it with a plasma or LCD HDTV?

Sherman

36
ďAlso, the 2010 air mattress sofa/bed has a large drawer under it that we find very useful.Ē  We too have the large drawer under our sofa in our 2011 Model 3100. We only have occasional guests but they think the air mattress is good.  Sure wouldn't want to do without the drawer (pic).  Itís great for storing the computer, printer, and longer items without having to accessing the storage under the driverís side twin bed. It holds a lot of stuff.

That's something I forgot to ask Stuart about -- the available storage under the various sofa/beds.

Is the sofa/bed w/air mattress the only one that has storage?  I know this was touched on somewhere above, but I can't recall if the others have any storage under them.

From everything I've read, the air mattress is almost universally disliked (this seems to be backed up by the fact that Stuart said PC is no longer using the sofa/bed w/air mattress) so I wouldn't try to find a rig with one just to get the storage, but it would be a shame to have to give up the additional space.

Thanks!

Sherman

37
I'm strictly an oversized Lego leveller kind of guy, but I have also seen that Sprinters do not lend themselves readily to being fitted with hydraulic levellers, both from a weight and a structural concern.  Some sites raise the question of installing them, could you find them, might invalidate your warranty.  This is another difference from comparing Sprinters (true class B van conversions) and Phoenix Cruisers on Ford chassis (class C without a cabover bed).  The new Ford chassis does seem to have promise for a lighter, more economical platform.

Jerry

I've heard the same thing, yet I've never read one report of damage or a voided warranty due to hydraulic levelers.

Human nature being what it is, I assume we would hear about it if people were having problems.

Also, I doubt HWH, the RV mfrs, or M-B would want the headaches that would result if the Sprinter couldn't handle the levelers for some reason.

Again though, I have no personal experience -- my knowledge is limited to what I've read on RV-related groups and forums.

Sherman

38
Thanks for the image Ron D.!  The Ford and the forthcoming Fiat based Dodge Ram should really give  the Sprinter a run for the money.  I donot care what anyone says I think the Sprinters are over priced, noisey, not maintenance free and over their weight limit when they hit the road.  On that note I am done passing judgement..to each his own.   Thanks

Just curious -- in all of my reading and research I've never heard anyone state or even suggest that the Sprinter (or any other vehicle) is 'maintenance free'.  Where did you hear that?  Who is making that claim?

WRT CCC, Ford wins that one hands down -- even the E-350 has almost 1,500 pounds more CCC than the Sprinter.  I'd rather have more CCC than I need than not enough, but there is such a thing as too much capacity as well.  I have read posts here and elsewhere from people who complain about a rough ride -- particularly when one of the lighter coaches is built on the E-450 chassis.

Stuart told me that the Sprinter-based 2350 has between 1,700 and 2,000 pounds CCC (with or w/o slide).  1,700 pounds may not be adequate for some folks, but it is enough for my wife and I.  

I have frequently read that many Sprinter-based rigs are often over-weight.  I don't doubt that -- many mfrs make coaches that are heavier than PC's, and therefore their RVs have a lower CCC.  I seem to recall reading about some that are under 1,000 pounds!  5 good size people on board and you're at the limit -- before any water, luggage, food, and other gear.  I'm surprised they can get away with selling a rig with such a low CCC.  Maybe a class B, but not a class C that's designed for longer trips and more passengers.

Luckily, that's not an issue with PC -- so, more points in the PC column!    

39
Sherman

We were in the same situation as you were 10 years ago.  We were just retired and had never been camping.  We were not sure what type of unit would meet our needs.  We researched for a few years prior but still had alot of questions.  One suggestion we have for you is that you could rent an RV for a weekend and get a first hand experience as to your dislikes and likes about the interior layout.  If you do rent, make sure you get one with a corner bed, or a couch verus a dinette, one with a slide versus one without a slide etc....  To save the cost of fuel when you are renting, camp at a location close to the rental agency.  You may not have you pick of manufacturers but you at will get a good idea as to what you like and dislike about the living arrangements.

Somethimes there are very good bargains out there for renting.

Sue

Thanks Sue, that's a great suggestion.

In fact, my wife and I were very anxious to rent a RV for a trip we took to visit family back in November of 2010, immediately after I retired.  There may be good bargains out there, but I was unable find any at that time.  We were primarily interested in the Sprinter-based rigs, and wanted to rent something similar to what we might eventually purchase.  That proved to be impossible.  I found a grand total of one (1) Sprinter-based RV for rent in the entire US, by an individual in CA.  Even if we lived next door to her I doubt we would have rented it because of the cost.  I can't recall the specific numbers off the top of my head, but it was in the neighborhood of $2,000 per week plus a mileage charge (on top of fuel and other expenses of course).  The rigs that were the typical rentals were a bit less expensive to rent but they were RVs we would never consider purchasing -- cheaply constructed and way too long for our needs.  I've driven just about everything shy of a semi or a dump truck (the largest straight trucks, 66 passenger Blue Bird buses, etc) but driving something that size across the country on state and local roads isn't my idea of a good time.  ;-)  We simply don't need a larger RV (no kids or grandkids) and I figure the shorter the better (as long as it works for us).  If we were to rent a larger, mediocre RV we might decide we don't like RVing at all when really it was just the particular rig.

Had we been able to rent a Sprinter-based RV for a reasonable amount of money we would have jumped at the chance, but it wasn't meant to be -- at least not at that time.  As the Sprinter-based rigs become more popular I imagine that will change.  Well, at least they'll be more readily available -- I doubt the cost will come down.  They'll likely continue be more expensive to rent than the typical RV.  

I came away with the feeling that it might make more sense to just buy a used RV.  Seriously -- the cost of renting was so high (thousands of dollars on top of the ordinary/routine expenses) that if a person got a decent deal on a used rig, put a few thousand miles on it over a year or two and sold it they might be better off, or break even.

I haven't given up on the rental idea though.  It's possible that my wife and I will find someone locally who has a Sprinter-based rig that they'd like to rent for a more reasonable amount.  One guy I correspond with has a 2006 WGO View that he figures costs him $1/mile to operate.  That's probably high because he figures depreciation based on $75K purchase price and a 150K useful life.  IOW, he assumes that at 150K it'll be worth $0.  I told him I'll take it off his hands at that point (he has over 100K miles on it now and is currently on the road with his wife)!  Anyway, let's say the total cost is $1/mile -- that includes everything: fuel, depreciation, insurance, repairs, maint., etc.  If a rig like that were rented the customer would obviously be paying for the fuel, which is approx. $0.25/mile, so charging $1/mile would more than cover any expenses.  I think $1/mile plus a nominal daily fee would be reasonable (and of course extra charges for excess wear and tear, cleaning, etc).  

Who knows, I might find someone willing to do that -- particularly if they do not have the time or money to travel and their RV is just sitting in storage.

Sherman

40
Sherman:

I am glad that you got alot of valuable info from Stuart today, he knows his RV business inside and out and you should believe and listen to what he says.  You can NOT get your M-B Spinter serviced at a Freighliner dealer and vice versa I know I tried at both dealers with my Dodge Sprinter and they both said no.  I can not get my Jeep with the 3.0L M-B with Mercedes logos all over it servcied or repaired at a M-B dealer either in or out of warranty peroid.  It appears that you have your mind set on the Sprinter so give Stuart a call and place your order.  I very much look forward to hearing how you like your new rig post delivery.......thanks

You'll know my mind is made up when I sign the papers.  ;-)

Yes, for my wife and I, I think the Sprinter chassis makes more sense.  Needless to say, that's different from making a blanket judgement that one chassis is 'better' than another.  Both Ford and Mercedes make good vehicles for a wide variety of uses.

I would still consider an RV on the E-350 chassis if it was comparable to the coach on the Sprinter chassis and if the price difference were great enough.

I'm going to see what I can find used.  If nothing turns up in a reasonable amount of time, _then_ I'll give Stuart a call and place my order.

Question -- was your Dodge Sprinter under warranty when the MB and Freightliner dealers turned you away?

I'm reading conflicting info and experiences regarding getting the Sprinter chassis serviced.  Maybe tomorrow I'll call MB, Dodge, and Freightliner and see what they say. 

I have heard of some corporate policies that restrict where service can be done, but they had to do with Dodge dealers not being allowed to work on Sprinters that were made after Daimler/Chrysler split.  I wonder if some of the owner experiences can be explained by independent dealers having different policies?

For example, here's a Chrysler dealer I just found with a quick Google search that services Sprinters from all three brands:
http://www.greenwaydodge.com/sprinter-service.htm

I did also see a statement that, "Some dealers prefer not to service motorhomes...".  That may apply to all chassis:
http://www.roadtrek.com/service_locator.aspx

From what I can see, service is available, and it may not matter which badge is on the front grill, but it can be hit and miss.  It does seem fair to say that finding service for a Ford would be easier.

FYI:  Here are links to Sprinter service facilities in the USA:
http://www.mbsprinterusa.com/find-dealer/
http://www.freightlinersprinterusa.com/find-dealer/

Sherman



41
UPDATE:

I spoke with Stuart earlier re: the 2350 on the Sprinter chassis.

The following is from my notes.  I believe it is accurate.  Hopefully Stuart will let us know if I misunderstood anything he said.

1) CCC w/o slide is ~2,000 pounds
2) CCC with slide is ~1,700 pounds
3) Slide adds ~300 pounds
4) Stuart prefers the slide -- more room, better resale value.
5) Only one slide failure in 10 years.
6) The Sprinter upcharge is still $12,000.
7) The MB Sprinter must be serviced at MB dealers.
8) The Freightliner Sprinter must go to Freightliner.
9) 2009 was the last year for the diesel E-350/450 and it did not have an intercooler so it was less powerful.
10) Ford diesel was a $10,000 upcharge.
11) Stuart bought 50 2008 Sprinter chassis from Monaco for 1/2 price.
12) 2010 was first model year for PC 2350/2400 on the Sprinter.
13) Since the original 50 Sprinters were sold, 10 have been traded in, mostly for 'lack of power'.
14) It is possible to get the tub base shower in the 2350.
15) Sofa/bed w/air mattress has been discontinued.  Split electric sofa/bed is used in Ford-based rigs, older style electric sofa in the  Sprinter-based units.  Both sofas have cushions with memory foam.
16) Stuart clearly prefers the Ford chassis over the Sprinter.

WRT mileage, he said that the Born Free rigs are heavier and less aerodynamic which explains their lower mileage (the 9.65 mpg @ 55 mph that Born Free publishes in their brochures).

Stuart said the PC E-350-based rigs get 10-12 mpg, the E-450 rigs 8-10 mpg, and the Sprinter-based 2350/2400 16 to 18 mpg.  He pointed out that it would take 300K to 400K miles of driving to get back the additional $12,000 upcharge with lower fuel costs.  That sounded a bit high so I did some quick math using his numbers (low end for both):

100,000 miles at 10 mpg = 10,000 gallons x $4/gallon = $40,000 for gasoline.

100,000 miles at 16 mpg = 6,250 gallons x $4.40/gallon = $27,500 for diesel.

Better than 300-400,000 miles, but still a long payback time -- several years for most people.  Of course, if/when fuel prices go up, the payback time will be less.

Also, as I mentioned above, there are many differences between the two chassis aside from their mileage ratings.

The fact that MB Sprinters must go to MB dealers and Freightliner to Freightliner bothers me.  I'm guessing there are more MB dealers but it would be nice to be able to use both.  Perhaps Stuart meant while they are under warranty, because I know I've read that Sprinter-based RV owners have gone to either, regardless of which badge is on the grill.

In any case, it looks like the 2350 on the Sprinter will work for us, I just need to decide whether we should wait and try to find one used or buy new.  I'm thinking I'll hold off a while longer and see what's available used.

Sherman


42
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

43
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

44
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  

45
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  pyho
 
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

Pages: 1 2 [3] 4 5 ... 7