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NitroxAZ 11-09-2010 09:33 PM

Question about an RV
Ladies and Gentlemen,

My wife and I are seriously contemplating getting a travel trailer or a 5th wheel. We do not know much about the advantages or disadvantages of either one. I was hoping you fine folk could enlighten me.

JonM 11-09-2010 10:30 PM

ive thought about it but i couldnt justify the cost. i would have to practicaly live in the thing to make it less than the cost of hotel rooms when the wife and i travel. we just fill the back of her avalanche and drive.

a problem i see with folks when i drive cross country on trips is people with fifth wheels using clearly innapropriate vehicles to tow them. massive gas costs, insurance and repairs along with finding places to park are some of the concerns.

my wife and i would rather stay in really nice hotels with hot tubs if we arent gonna sleep under the stars.

mrm14 11-09-2010 11:05 PM

For what I know of 5th wheel trailers and tow hitch trailers is that 5th wheels usually tow and ride better as the weight of your load is usually over the center of the rear axle. The handeling of your vehicle while towing is usually better as well. Much better way to go when wanting larger and thus heavier trailer for more comfort in your travels. Also, with a 5th wheel, your usually going to get a much tighter turning radis. Another plus when having to back into and out of tight spots.

The disadavantages would be the 5th wheel hinge plate taking up room in the bed of your truck. Not so much a problem when not towing as they can be removed and replaced for the trailer, but if you need the room in the bed of the truck for stuff while towing it does take up some space. Also your probably going to want/need that special tailgate with the center notched out. If you go for a larger/ heavier trailer dual real wheels may be in the picture as well.

orangello 11-09-2010 11:05 PM

If you live there, somebody can REPO your house; that is a serious disadvantage. ;)

Seriously though, i keep seeing campers from the Katrina era selling on random parking lots & whatnot, especially this place in Hattiesburg, MS. You would need a more expensive hitch to pull the 5th wheeler, probably a stouter truck too.

Sh00tnButt 11-09-2010 11:29 PM

i actually live in a motor home .. house is up for sale and has been the last couple of years .. i have owned both the pull trailer and the 5th wheel .. there are advantages to all 3 kinds ..
motor home - you can tow your personal vehicle behind you ..
pull trailer does not require a truck to pull (depending on size) ..
5th wheel - requires a truck ..
depending on what your going to use it for is a big factor .. whether occasional, frequent or live in ..
also how many folks and critters you take along ..
if you give me an idea what your "use" will be i will be happy to let you know what my opinion is from experience ..

dunerunner 11-10-2010 12:43 AM

Buy a motorhome and you have between $60,000 and $125,000 invested in an occasional use vehicle. You can tow your vehicle behind you, if it is towable (List Here MotorHome Magazine: Making your RV travels easier Dingy Guide, right side bar half way down the page). You will need a Tow Dolly or if the dingy is towable on all fours, a tow hitch. This allows you to travel around in a more maneuverable fuel efficient vehicle. RV MPG is going to be ~10 MPG regardless of whether it is a gas of diesel. Look for an RV, trailer or 5th wheel here Lazydays RV SuperCenter - Number One In RVs (Gas & Diesel Motor homes, Fifth Wheels, and Travel Trailers)

A 3/4 to 1 ton long bed pick-up will run you $25,000 to $65,000 depending on what you want and the GVW of the truck and 5th Wheel you expect to tow. The 5th wheel trailer will run you $20,000 to $65,000. You will have to have a special hitch and when parked you get to drive around town in your pick-up.

Again, you don't need a truck to tow a trailer, but make sure your vehicle (Van, Full sized car, etc.) is capable of towing the size and weight of trailer you are looking to buy. Trailers run from $18,000 to $55,000 depending on what you want. And again you get to drive around in your tow vehicle after you've parked the trailer.

Hope this helps, good luck! Any questions, PM me.

nwrednk 11-10-2010 10:29 AM

I for one do not understand...
The appeal of 5th wheel travel trailors! They require most of your cargo space
for the "saddle" that would otherwise be used for cargo or a dead deer or elk!

NitroxAZ 11-10-2010 03:08 PM

We are looking to use this for weekend jaunts and sometimes weeklong ventures. We will probably use it 10-15 times a year, give or take. We are just unsure what will work best for us. We definitely are not going to get a Class A. It will be a TT or 5th wheel.

Jo da Plumbr 11-10-2010 04:04 PM

I looked at trailers and ended up with a RV. Glad I did.
For one thing the trailer cannot be occupied while towing. So the whole trip is in the car or truck and the trailer is just a small expensive hotel room when you get there. Driving the RV is an adventure as soon as you start the engine. Also on a long drive she takes a turn and I can lie down and sleep, read or watch TV while still moving. We get where we are going and are not worn out from getting there. No need to stop for lunch or pee breaks, just pull over and switch drivers.
Also set up with a trailer can be a bear. Many need to have leveling blocks laid out and you then pull the trailer up on the blocks. The better fifth wheels have leveling jacks like the RVs. Hooking up a trailer is a feat extraordinaire without help to line you up as you back up to the trailer. If you have help then it is just a PITA. The fifth wheel again is a better option for the easier hook up. The RV of course you unplug and go. The one down side to the RV is that if you have a tow car, and you should have a tow car, you cannot back up period. If you get caught in a spot where you cannot go forward you have to un hitch the car, very easy with most systems, and move the tow before backing the RV.
If I were you and really wanted to get into the RV trailer scene I would go look at the options available. Hell the shopping can be half the fun. If you already have a heavy enough truck for the fifth wheel take that over a travel trailer. But don't rule out the class A's. Check used. You may be surprised at how reasonable the costs.

dunerunner 11-10-2010 04:17 PM


Are you going to be at an improved camp ground with full hook-ups most of the time or dry camping?

Do you intend to spend much time in the trailer, or will you mostly be outdoors?

Will you be doing your own cooking?

How much do you expect to "Rough It"?

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