How To Buy The Right RV For YOU

There are but two ways to tour the country by vehicle: Convertible and take as few of your possessions as possible or an RV and take all the comforts of home with you.

Canyon Gateway RV Park, Williams, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Pop-up camper and fifth wheel trailer camped at Canyon Gateway RV Park, Williams, Arizona, a full-service campground © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Here’s how to do the latter without breaking the bank or breaking your mind.

There is nothing particularly obvious about choosing an RV. It all comes down to personal choice.

And it’s not reasonable to expect that everyone will have a chance to drive every kind of RV before they rent or purchase one. I’ve driven a pop-up trailer, truck camper, fifth wheel trailers, a Class A gas motorhome, and a diesel pusher of varying lengths, but I’d never driven a Class B or Class C motorhome.

Purchasing an RV is a personal choice not unlike buying a new car or house, computer or smart phone, furniture or household appliances.

You cannot simply decide to buy an RV and buy it—at once. There are numerous things that should be kept in mind before you’re prepared to make that crucial decision.

When buying an RV that suits your requirements, you need to consider type of RV, new or preowned, size, ease of driving, type of camping, cost, manufacturer, dealer, and much more.

There is such an amazing variety of models and floor plans to choose from that it can leave the mind boggling.

North Llano River RV Park, Junction, Texas © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Class A gas motorhome camping at North Llano River RV Park, Junction, Texas © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Very often people buy the wrong RV, only to be disappointed and trade it in or resell it less than a year later only to lose thousands of dollars in the transaction.

Buying an RV can be a frustrating experience—it can be intimidating and confusing. Since there’s a myriad of new and preowned RVs available for purchase, it can be confusing trying to decide which one is best for you and your family and it’s not easy to know where to begin.

If you’re buying an RV for the first time, you can quickly get lost in the details—there are lots of them. There’s a considerable amount of information competing for your attention—along with some misinformation.

Buying an RV usually requires some trade-offs.

I’m not going to discuss all the different features and options on various types of RVs or tell you which models are best (something that is really quite personal and which changes over time); however, there are a few questions and factors to keep in mind when selecting the best RV for you and your family.

The right RV comes down to personal preference.

My purpose then, is to provide you with a basic framework to use in deciding which RV to buy.

Scamp travel trailer at Lost Dutchman State Park, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Scamp travel trailer at Lost Dutchman State Park, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

There are a few factors that I encourage you to keep in mind when buying your RV. I’ll provide my advice on purchasing an RV which comes from my personal experience of buying numerous types of RVs and various models.

Here are a few questions that’ll help you narrow down what to buy.

What type of camping or RV travel will I do? Weekends at the lake? Summer vacation? Months at a time? Snowbird? Full time RVing?

What type of RV should I get? Pop-up trailer? Truck camper? Travel trailer? Fifth wheel trailer? Motorhome? The classing system for motorhomes starts with Class B as the smallest, Class A as the largest, and Class C in between. Gas or diesel?

Towing? Whether you’ll be towing your trailer or towing another vehicle behind your motorhome, make sure you have the right vehicle and appropriate towing hitch. Be aware of and check GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) and CVWR (Combined Vehicle Weight Rating).

Where will I camp most of the time? Full service RV parks? Campgrounds with minimal services? National, state, or county parks? BLM? Off grid? Wilderness camping?

How much cooking will I do? Large kitchen with appliances, plenty of counter space, and food storage areas?

Class B motorhome at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Arizona/Utah © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Class C motorhome at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Arizona/Utah © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Related costs? Fuel? Maintenance and service? License fees? Insurance? Storage?

Financing? If you’re like most RVers, you’ll need to finance at least part of your purchase. Check with your bank or lending institution to determine your credit limit and interest rate prior to shopping for the RV of your dreams.

How much storage space will I require? How many people do you need to pack for? Consider the amount of food and clothes you will want to take—plus all the toys, games and sports equipment?

With any RV, there are bound to be some compromises. The important thing is to avoid surprises. As long as you keep your expectations in line with reality, you can still have a ton of fun and freedom in your new RV.

Cajun Palms RV Resort, Henderson, Louisiana © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Class A diesel pusher and toad camping at Cajun Palms RV Resort, Henderson, Louisiana © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Worth Pondering…
Safe travels and keep your wheels on the road.

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Steps in Buying the RV of Your Dreams

It’s all about buying the RV of your dreams!

Live it well! Enjoy today! Do your dream! © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Live it well!
Enjoy today!
Do your dream! © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Whether you are considering the interior accommodations, features, and technology or the amount of available interior and basement storage, it all matters, but the process of deciding what’s right for you doesn’t have to be overwhelming.

When contemplating the purchase of a motorhome or trailer, take your time, do your homework, talk to owners of similar types and brands of campers, attend RV shows, and locate a good reputable dealer who stands behind his products and provides quality service.

Visit the RV dealers in your area, and attend RV shows. Seeing a selection of models in one location allows you to do side-by-side comparisons on manufacturers, models, size, price and options.

It’s easy to get caught up in the moment and start fantasizing about the good times you’ll have cruising down a scenic highway in the RV of your dreams—your home-away-from-home. But do the research first.

The first thing to remember when RV shopping is to set goals and stick with them. Key goals include establishing an RV budget, deciding on the RV type and size, deciding on the RV floor plan, features, and amenities, and narrowing down the manufactures to several choices that meet your criteria.

2012 Newmar Dutch Star Class A Diesel motorhome camped at Leasburg Dam State Park, New Mexico. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
2012 Newmar Dutch Star Class A Diesel motorhome camped at Leasburg Dam State Park, New Mexico. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Towable or Motorized?

For many families, towable RVs offer great flexibility and if you already own a vehicle that can serve as your tow vehicle, you are already half-way there.

Motorized RVs on the other hand offer great passenger comfort while on the road and some people find them easier to maneuver into a camping site.

Are you a weekend warrior, or do you plan to do extended adventures? Or are you a snowbird or full-time RVer.

You’re obviously going to need a lot more gear if you plan to live in your RV for an extended stay, which means you will need more storage space and greater load capacity. Sport Utility RVs (or toy haulers) are a great option for people who want to bring along a lot of large gear.

Sleeping capacity?

What size or RV fits your family? How many people will your RV need to sleep? An RV built for two offers a different set of features than a bunkhouse built for a family.

rent an rv
Class C motorhome at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

With so many new styles of RVs on the market it’s helpful to narrow down your desired floor plan before hitting the showroom floor.

Where do you plan to camp?

Depending on where you plan to camp, the size of your RV may be an issue you need to consider. Most RV parks and resorts can accommodate motorhomes and trailers up to 40 feet in length or longer. Some national parks, state parks, provincial parks, and county or regional parks campgrounds have length restrictions.

A Class B motorhome, Class C motorhome, truck camper, or small trailer are all goods options for people who desire to have the ability to camp most anywhere.

You’ll also want to consider options, such as a generator or solar panels, that simplify boondocking or dry camping.

When do you plan to camp?

Are you a summertime RVer? Or do you like to find your AWAY year round?

If winter camping is something you enjoy, then consider a four-season RV.

When purchasing an RV for use in cold weather, ensure sure it has cold weather features including heated holding tanks, dual pane windows, adequate LP capacity, an enclosed underbelly, and heated bays.

A camping trip to a ski area; football, basketball, or hockey game; hunting or snowmobiling; cross country skiing, snow tubing, tobogganing, or ice fishing are some of the ways you can continue to enjoy your RV during the winter months.

Boondocking on BLM land near Quartzsite. Note the solar panels. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Boondocking on BLM land near Quartzsite. Note the solar panels. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Or if you plan to spend considerable time camping in hot weather, you’ll need adequate air conditioning.

There are many choices of RVs on the market with something for everybody and every budget.

Worth Pondering…

Never forget your dreams.

—Corczak

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Torklift Introduces GlowStep Revolution

Sumner, Washington-based Torklift International introduces a “top-secret new product”, the GlowStep Revolution, available in applications ranging from two to six steps.

banner_gs“The GlowStep Revolution is a scissor step made especially for towables including fifth wheels,” explained Torklift International General Manager Jay Taylor, in a news release.

“Previously, our industry leading GlowStep was only available for truck camper applications, now it works with towables and side-entry truck campers.”

“GlowStep Revolution is the only scissor step available for towables that eliminates that ‘diving board’ feeling felt when walking down a factory step because the factory step does not reach the ground. There is usually a large gap at the bottom of the factory step between the step and the ground,” Taylor said.

“The GlowStep Revolution is the only ‘Earth to RV’ step giving the customer the best stability.”

This new step product also prevents customers from having to haul around inconvenient and often dangerous quick fixes for their factory steps.

“Recently, we visited a campground to observe homemade solutions people create to help their steps reach the ground,” he said.

Composed of 100 percent aluminum and stainless steel
Composed of 100 percent aluminum and stainless steel

“We saw that people used pallets, cinder blocks, plastic step stools, and wooden blocks to stabilize their step and help them reach the ground easier. Those solutions are bulky and not simple to set up, plus they take up a great deal of storage space inside the RV during transit.”

In a matter of minutes, the GlowStep Revolution bolts to where the factory step would be housed. It folds up for storage and locks into place, typically giving a greater deal of ground clearance than the factory step. Additionally, it is roughly 50 percent lighter than the factory step.

It also features the All Terrain Landing Gear. The landing gear is a set of leveling feet on the step that can be adjusted through a push button mechanism on uneven terrain.

“The landing gear allows the customer to park on any kind of terrain without having to be concerned about pin-pointing their step deployment area on a level space,” Taylor explained. “They keep the step level and sturdy.”
The All Terrain Landing Gear can also be purchased separately and retrofitted onto any pre-existing GlowStep application.

Self illuminating steps - No batteries
Self illuminating steps – No batteries

The original GlowStep made for rear entry truck camper applications will not be discontinued. The GlowStep Revolution features a new mounting bracket that allows it to be mounted to towables and side-entry truck campers.

“When we visited the campground we also learned something interesting about campers who travel with their dogs,” Taylor added.

“Dogs typically have a hard time getting up and down factory steps because they are often grated like a cheese grater leading to their toe nails getting caught in the step. The GlowStep Revolution does not feature this grate design, allowing pets to walk up and down it comfortably.”

The GlowStep Revolution is rated up to 375 pounds when used with the GlowGuide handrail and features an 8-inch step depth making it compliant with RV Industry Association manufacturer step design requirements.  It also features bushing bearings at each hinge point for maximum stability and longevity. It is made in the United States and comes with a lifetime warranty.

The GlowStep Revolution is available for pre-order.

The step is available for sale July 8. The first 50 customers to pre-order the step will receive their choice of free SafeStep pet barrier panels or a Dirt Destroyer shoe cleaning attachment. Customers who purchase a GlowStep or GlowStep Revolution with a GlowGuide handrail between now and August 14, will also be eligible for a $20 rebate toward a GlowGuide handrail.

Details

Torklift International

The Torklift story begins in 1958 when Torklift founder Jon Kay began building the foundation of knowledge in manufacturing, fabrication, and retail that would become a Torklift signature years later at a local hitch and fabrication shop in Tacoma, Washington.

Available from 2-6 Steps
Available from 2-6 Steps

Torklift International specializes in working with distributors and dealers around the globe to continue bringing new innovations to the towing, RV, and truck industries.

Address: 1901 Fryar Avenue,  Sumner, WA, 98390

Phone: (800) 246-8132 (toll free)

Website: www.torklift.com

Worth Pondering…

Blessed be the Flexible for they shall not get bent out of shape.

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Lance Introduces “President’s Choice” Truck Camper

Lancaster, California-based Lance Camper announced the introduction of the 975 to its Truck Camper line up.

Lance Introduces "President's Choice" Truck Camper
Lance Introduces “President’s Choice” Truck Camper

The 975 is a hard-side, mid ship dry bath model, featuring a single full wall super slide containing the dinette and refrigerator.

The Lance Camper 975 has a 10-foot 4-inch floor length with a 79-inch interior height.

This truck camper is loaded with features including air conditioning, ultraDECKplus bumper, 2.5K LP generator, huge electric side and rear awnings w/LED lighting, Four Seasons Package, back up camera, 24-inch LCD TV, solar panel, and multi-sport roof rack, the 975 weighs in well under 4,000 pounds, according to company news release.

“The 975 fills a need for many truck camper buyers looking for a fully featured, full wall slide, dry bath camper at a reasonable weight,” claims Gary Conley, national sales manager.

“I’m very excited about how the 975 turned out and will be placing an order for one as my next demo,” adds Jack Cole, Lance president.

“I really challenged the engineers to maximize every available square inch of this model for storage and great features and they rose to the occasion.”

Lance Introduces "President's Choice" Truck Camper
Lance Introduces “President’s Choice” Truck Camper

The 975 has thus become known internally at Lance as the “President’s Choice!”

Along with the new blue tooth compatible audio system, USB charging port, and full LED lighting package, new features include a built in trash can and slide out pantry in the galley.

The new “Lance Locker” vertical exterior storage compartment accommodates long items including fishing rods and snow boards.

The new Lance 975 Truck Camper specifications include:

Floor Length: 10 feet 4 inches

Overall Length: 19 feet 4 inches

Overall Width: 96 inches

Lance Introduces "President's Choice" Truck Camper
Lance Introduces “President’s Choice” Truck Camper

Overall Height: 9 feet 1 inch

Interior Height: 6 feet 7 inches

Dry Weight w/Std. Equipment: 3,300 pounds

Wet Weight w/Std. Equipment: 3,793 pounds

Fresh Water Tank Capacity: 45 gallons

Grey Water Tank Capacity: 30 gallons

Black Water Tank Capacity: 26 gallons

Refrigerator: 6 cubic feet

Propane: 2-5 gallon tanks

Furnace: 20,000 BTU

Sleeps: 4

Lance 975 Truck Camper floor plan
Lance 975 Truck Camper floor plan

Details

Lance Camper Manufacturing Corp.

Lancaster, California-based Lance Camper Manufacturing Corp. has been one of the largest and leading manufacturers of truck campers in North America since the company was founded in 1965.

Their line of ultra-light travel trailers is one of the fastest-growing RV lines in the American West.

Specializing in the design and construction of high-quality RVs, Lance’s recent ten-year win of the RVDA’s prestigious and coveted DSI (Dealer Satisfaction Index) Quality Circle Award is a direct reflection of this quality in both their products and the service provided to Lance dealers and consumers these past 47 years.

Lance manufactures from a state-of-the-art production facility—a 141,000 square foot, 22-acre campus.

Factory tours are by appointment only on Wednesday mornings during production cycles.

Address: 43120 Venture Street, Lancaster, CA 93535-4510

Phone: (661) 949-3322

Website: www.lancecamper.com

Worth Pondering…

May all your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view… where something strange and more beautiful and more full of wonder than your deepest dreams waits for you.
—Edward Abbey

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More March 2015 RV Manufacturer Recalls

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has recently announced 4 recall notices involving 3 recreational vehicle/chassis manufacturers— Gulf Stream Coach, Lance Camper, and Forest River.

Gulf Stream Coach

gulf-stream-logoGulf Stream Coach, Inc. (Gulf Stream) is recalling certain model year 2010-2014 Conquest SE, Trailmaster, and Kingsport recreational trailers, models 265BHS and 265BHG, manufactured October 28, 2009, to August 22, 2013. The tire label on the affected trailers does not contain the correct tire size and tire pressure information. As such, these vehicles fail to comply with the requirements of 49 CFR Part 567, “Certification.”

A tire blowout may result if the operator over inflates the tires due to incorrect label information, increasing the risk of a crash.

Gulf Stream will notify owners and will send owners corrected labels with instructions for the proper installation of the labels, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin in March 2015. Owners may contact Gulf Stream customer service at 1-800-289-8787. Gulf Stream’s number for this recall is EWR ID 00309.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Lance Camper

Lance-LogoLance Camper Manufacturing Corp. (Lance) is recalling certain model year 2015 Slide-In Campers, and Travel Trailers built April 10, 2014, to December 15, 2014, and equipped with certain Latitude Awnings, styles GX and G, manufactured by Carefree of Colorado. The affected awnings may have screws that attach the lateral arm brackets to the mounting brackets that were not manufactured to specification.

The screws could fail, causing the supporting bracket to fail, and the awning to fall and potentially strike and injure a person beneath it.

Lance will notify owners, and dealers will remove and replace the defective screws, free of charge. The recall began on February 20, 2015. Owners may contact Lance customer service at 1-661-949-3322.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Forest River, Inc.

forest-RiverForest River, Inc. (Forest River) is recalling certain 2015 XLR XLF375AMP, XLR XLF380AMP, XLR XLF386X12HP, XLR XLF395AMP, XLR XLF415AMP, and XLR XLF425AMP recreational vehicles and toy haulers. The vehicles may be equipped with the incorrect hitch assembly rating information. The correct gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) is 18,000lbs, however the Certification label states that the GVWR rating is 21,000lbs. As such, these trailers fail to conform to Part 567, “Certification.”

If the trailer is loaded based on the incorrect GVWR, the hitch assembly would be overloaded which may result in hitch assembly failure, causing a loss of control and increasing the risk of a crash.

Forest River will notify owners and will send corrected Certification, Tire Information, and Cargo Carrying Capacity labels, free of charge. The manufacturer has not yet provided a notification schedule. Owners may contact Forest River customer service at 1-574-206-7600. Forest River’s number for this recall is 45-03022015.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Forest River, Inc.

forest-RiverForest River, Inc. (Forest River) is recalling certain model year 2015 Wildcat WCF275CKX, WCF272RLX, WCF295RSX, WCF293REX, WCF282RKX, and WCF312BHX recreational fifth wheel trailers manufactured November 6, 2014, to February 18, 2015. The affected vehicles may be equipped with Federal Certification Labels that incorrectly state the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) to be 13,000lbs. when the correct GVWR is 11,999lbs. As such, these trailers fail to conform to Part 567, “Certification.”

If the trailer is overloaded, the trailer pin box (the connection point for the trailer to the vehicle) may fail, resulting in a loss of control, increasing the risk of a crash.

Forest River will notify owners and will send corrected Federal Certification Labels, free of charge. The manufacturer has not yet provided a notification schedule. Owners may contact Forest River customer service at 1-574-206-7600.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Please Note: This is the 51st in a series of articles relating to RV Manufacturers Recalls

Worth Pondering…

Success is peace of mind in knowing you did your best.

—John Wooden

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Take Control of Your Vacation

Everyone has been there.

Fleetwood Providence Diesel Pusher Class A motorhome  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Fleetwood Providence Diesel Pusher Class A motorhome at Canyon de Chelly, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

The thrill and anticipation of a vacation on the horizon, but the dread of security checks, baggage claims, cancelled flights, and adhering to someone else’s schedule. The airline schedule, cruise ship, and bus tours.

But there are alternatives that give you full control of your vacation.

There is a better way. In fact, now is the perfect time to plan unrestricted, adventurous family vacations for the upcoming summer holiday season.

All you need is a recreational vehicle, maps, national campground and RV park directory, and vacation time with your family.

Some benefits to RVing include affordable travel with your family and pets, and the ability to go wherever you want, whenever you want.

It’s fun to plan family trips and make memories along the way.

However, shopping for a recreational vehicle can be overwhelming and choosing the right one is no small decision. Take your time, do your homework, talk to owners of various types and brands of RVs, attend RV shows, and locate a good reputable dealer who stands behind his products and provides quality service.

Class B motorhome at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Arizona/Utah  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Class B motorhome at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Arizona/Utah © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Best of all, there is an RV for just about every budget and every family. It just takes some time to find it. One of the primary aspects involved in selecting a recreational vehicle is making a decision on the type of RV you need. Two primary types should be considered: Towable and motorized.

Towable RVs

Towable RVs must be mounted on or towed by a motorized vehicle to be moved from place to place. Some towables are small and light enough to be towed by the family car, while others require an SUV or pickup truck. Always verify your vehicle’s towing capability and allow for the added weight of personal belongings loaded on board.

Conventional travel trailers offer a wide range of floor plans, sizes, and conveniences.

Fifth wheel trailers have similar amenities as travel trailers, but are constructed with a raised forward section that provides a spacious bi-level floor plan. These models are designed to be towed by a pickup truck equipped with a fifth-wheel hitch.

Also known as pop-ups and tent trailers, folding camping trailers are great for outdoor lovers who enjoy sleeping in a tent without sleeping on the ground. Folding camping trailers stow away for easy, lightweight towing. With canvas sides that extend to reveal queen-sized beds, it’s easy to have a fresh-air experience with all the comforts of an RV.

Keystone Montana fifth wheel trailer at Lost Dutchman State Park, Arizona  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Keystone Montana fifth wheel trailer at Lost Dutchman State Park, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Also known as sport utility RVs, toy haulers are for the active family who wants to take motorcycles, dirt bikes, ATVs, or other motorized toys on the road. Available as a fifth wheel or travel trailer, the rear end of the toy hauler drops down, forming a ramp for access into a “garage” area where motorized toys can be safely stored; the living quarters are separated by a wall.

The truck camper is a portable unit designed to be loaded onto, or affixed to, the bed or chassis of a pickup truck. The slide-in units are easily loaded and unloaded from the bed of the truck, freeing the truck’s bumper to tow boats, ATVs, and other trailers.

It is important to match the loaded weight of the towable RV to the towing capacity of the tow vehicle. Consult your dealer or owner’s manual for details and have the tow hitch professionally installed.

Motorized RVs

Commonly known as motorhomes, motorized RVs are on a motorized chassis with gas or diesel engines.

Class A or conventional motorhomes are constructed entirely on a specially designed motor vehicle chassis. Home-like amenities abound, and generally these motorhomes have kitchens, bathrooms, living areas with entertainment centers and centrally controlled heating and air conditioning.

Scamp travel trailer at Lost Dutchman State Park, Arizona  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Scamp travel trailer at Lost Dutchman State Park, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Commonly called camper vans, Class B motorhomes are built using automotive manufactured van or panel-truck shells. Camping vans drive more like the family car, but offer the comforts and conveniences of home on the road.

Class C motorhomes are built on an automotive van frame with a wider body section attached to the original cab section. Many Class C motorhomes are easily recognizable by the over-the-cab area that is often an optional sleeping area. Amenities are similar to those in conventional motorhomes.

Many owners choose to tow a small vehicle for short side trips once the motorhome is parked.

Additional Tips

Now that you’ve identified the type of RV that best suits your family, it’s time to shop for the best fitting style, floor plan, price range, and options. The following tips can help for an easier RV shopping experience:

  • Set a price range
  • Think about types of floor plans that work best for you and your family
  • For a towable RV, consider your tow vehicle’s towing capacity; for a motorized RV, consider the pros and cons of gas and diesel engines

Please Note: For an additional resource, read The 4 Most Important Tips For Purchasing a New RV

Worth Pondering…

When your vacation happens on the open road, your trip is only limited by your imagination.

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Eagle Cap Truck Camper: Best New Innovation For 2015

Yakima, Washington-based Adventurer LP (ALP) manufacturer of the Eagle Cap brand of truck campers won Truck Camper Magazines Readers Choice Award for the “Best New Innovation of the Year.”

Modular face to face dream dinette in mystic
Modular face to face dream dinette in mystic

“We went completely through the Eagle Cap campers making many new industry firsts and innovative changes for 2015,” said Greg Tucknies, director of sales and marketing for ALP. “One of which was an RV industry first with Modular Furniture. Most truck campers come with a face-to-face dinette built in to their slide-outs and that is your only option.”

For 2015 Eagle Cap created the new Modular Dinette furniture. The dinette seating is now a modular design, meaning the seat cushion sections are designed to work as a face to face dinette or as a u-shaped dinette. To make into a u-shaped dinette you simple remove the table, add the modular insert and the u-shaped “D” style table and now you have a u-shaped dinette.

The engineering department designed the dinette areas so that the sofa or the optional Theater Seating will fit into this same area simply by unscrewing the dinette modular sections, remove the table and install one of the above options.

Want something other than that in your dinette area? Order without the dinette and add whatever you wish, free standing table and chairs, desk, bunk beds, you name it. Eagle Cap doesn’t offer those options as of yet but you could add them aftermarket.

Modular furniture offers the customer the ability to completely remove the dinette and even add their own options like a free-standing table and chairs or as one customer did a work station/desk, said Greg Tucknies.

“This has made the new 2015 Eagle Caps an extremely popular truck camper this year with this new innovation and it looks like the Truck Camper Magazine readers agreed,” said Tucknies. “We are very honored to receive this award and we are already working on more new innovations for next year so stay tuned.”

2015 Eagle Cap EC1165 interior with u-shaped dinette
2015 Eagle Cap EC1165 interior with u-shaped dinette

Also new for 2015 on all Eagle Cap models are molded bowl sinks to the galley solid surface counter tops adding an additional high end feature.

Eagle Cap truck campers are known for their industry leading features such as our one-piece fiberglass front caps. Eagle Cap has redesigned their front caps for 2015 to provide more contoured aerodynamic design featuring Eagle Cap exclusive two-tone gel coat finish, giving the new “Next Generation” Eagle Caps a bolder new look for 2015.

These new designer fiberglass caps are engineered to fit perfectly to the contour of the camper providing a perfect match to the TCC aluminum frame construction providing a tight secure fit to the camper. All attachment screws are covered with the new “3M Extreme Seal” tape providing  a second to none front cap seal.

A new option for Eagle Cap for 2015 is the new Coleman Mach 8 HE 13,500 BTU Low Profile A/C giving you more BTU’s, better cooling, and a much lower height over the standard A/C.

In addition to the above changes, upgrades, and features Eagle Cap will debut a new floor plan called the 960 later this year. Many of its features and more were also added into the new “Next Generation” Eagle Caps. This new model will feature a Truck Camper industry first the “California King 72″x84″ Bed” featured last year in our sister product line Adventurer.

Details

Adventurer LP (ALP)

ALP_logo-290x145ALP has been a premium RV manufacturer since 1969. ALP’s reputation has been built on a commitment to customer satisfaction in the RV, camper, motorhome, and truck camper industry.

Address: 3303 West Washington Avenue, Yakima, Washington 98903

Phone: (509) 895-7064

Website: www.amlrv.com

Worth Pondering…

Efficiency is doing things right; effectiveness is doing the right things.

—Peter Drucker

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Lance Awarded Truck Camper of The Year

Lancaster, California-based Lance Camper Manufacturing Corp. 1052 Truck Camper has been awarded Truck Camper Magazine’s the Truck Camper of The Year for 2014.

2015 Lance 1052 truck camper
2015 Lance 1052 truck camper

“This is a huge accomplishment for Lance and especially the product development team led by Randy Hunter,” said Bob Rogers, director of marketing.

“Quite simply, Truck Camper Magazine is the go-to resource for the truck camper customer and to be selected as the best among all the eligible choices by this very educated and passionate group, is indeed an honor.”

The 1052 was introduced early in 2014 and has been an increasingly popular model for Lance ever since.

The 1052’s huge double super slides, combine to create an open living space that will have you inviting all your friends over.

The 1052 also boasts the very popular dry bath layout, loads of extra large storage compartments, and an all new entertainment center with room for a 24-inch flat screen, allowing easy viewing from anywhere in the camper.

With the 1052, Lance also introduces the all new ultraDECKplus, an optional bumper that has redefined what is possible in bumper design and functionality with a large extendable deck area, three additional storage compartments, and an additional 2-inch receiver that accepts all popular sport racks and accessories.

2015 Lance 1052 truck camper
2015 Lance 1052 truck camper

“When I saw the first 1052 and then took it camping, I knew we had a winner on our hands. Everyone is amazed at the interior room provided by the double slides, the gigantic galley, the dry bath and huge U-shaped dinette,” added Rogers.

“On top of that, when you add the lengthy list of standard equipment including all-season dual pane windows, blue tooth compatible audio system and the optional ultraDECKplus bumper and multi-sport roof rack system, you have one awesome, very functional camper.”

Also noteworthy, Lance’s latest model, the new 995 Truck Camper took third place in the Truck Camper of the Year category and Lance’s ultraDECKplus bumper, designed in partnership with Torklift International, took home second place in the Innovation of The Year category of this year’s readers choice awards.

2015 Lance 1052 truck camper
2015 Lance 1052 truck camper

Lance 1052 truck camper specifications include:

  • Floor Length: 10 feet 11 inches
  • Overall Length: 19 feet 11 inches
  • Exterior Width: 96 inches
  • Exterior Height: 9 feet 5 inches
  • Interior Height: 6 feet 9 inches
  • Dry Weight w/Standard Equipment: 3,409 pounds
  • Wet Weight w/Standard Equipment: 3,928 pounds
  • Fresh Water Tank Capacity: 49 gallons
  • Grey Water Tank Capacity: 27 gallons
  • Black Water Tank Capacity: 22 gallons
  • Refrigerator: 6 cubic feet
  • Propane: 2-5 gallon tanks
  • Furnace: 20,000 BTU
  • Sleeps: 5
2015 Lance 1052 truck camper
2015 Lance 1052 truck camper

Details

Lance Camper Manufacturing Corp.

Lancaster, California-based Lance Camper Manufacturing Corp. has been one of the largest and leading manufacturers of truck campers in North America since the company was founded in 1965.

Their line of ultra-light travel trailers is one of the fastest-growing RV lines in the American West.

Specializing in the design and construction of high-quality RVs, Lance’s recent ten-year win of the RVDA’s prestigious and coveted DSI (Dealer Satisfaction Index) Quality Circle Award is a direct reflection of this quality in both their products and the service provided to Lance dealers and consumers these past 47 years.

Lance manufactures from a state-of-the-art production facility—a 141,000 square foot, 22-acre campus.

Factory tours are by appointment only on Wednesday mornings during production cycles.

Address: 43120 Venture Street Lancaster, CA 93535-4510

Phone: (661) 949-3322

Website: www.lancecamper.com

Worth Pondering…

May all your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view… where something strange and more beautiful and more full of wonder than your deepest dreams waits for you.
—Edward Abbey

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January 2015 RV Manufacturer Recalls

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has recently announced seven recall notices involving seven recreational vehicle/chassis manufacturers—Forest River, Lance Camper, Thor Motor Coach, Winnebago, Entegra Coach, Winnebago Towable, and Jayco.

Forest River, Inc.

forest-RiverForest River, Inc. (Forest River) is recalling certain model year 2015 Vibe VBT272BHS travel trailers manufactured July 15, 2014, to December 19, 2014. These trailers may have incorrect tire size and tire pressure information on the Federal Certification and Tire labels.

The information on the label lists the installed tires as ST225/75R15/C inflated to 50 PSI, however the tires that are actually mounted on the trailer are ST225/75R15/D inflated to 65 PSI. As such, these trailers fail to comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) number 110, “Tire Selection and Rims and Motor Home/Recreation Vehicle Trailer Load Carrying Capacity Information for Motor Vehicles with a GVWR of 4,536 Kilograms (10,000 Pounds) or Less.”

If the tires are replaced with the tires indicated on the label, the tires may be insufficient to carry the load and a tire blow out may result, increasing the risk of a crash.

Forest River will send new labels to dealers and owners with the correct tire information, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin on January 5, 2015. Owners may contact Forest River customer service at 1-206-593-4005. Forest River’s number for this recall is 59-12232014.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Lance Camper Manufacturing Corp.

Lance 50th anniv. logoLance Camper Manufacturing Corp. (Lance) is recalling certain model year 2015 Slide-In Campers and Travel Trailers manufactured August 1, 2014, to October 27, 2014, and equipped with certain Latitude awnings manufactured by Carefree of Colorado. The mounting brackets of the affected awnings may crack, and the awnings may fall.

If an awning falls, there is an increased risk of injury to anyone under the awning.

Lance will notify owners, and dealers will remove and replace all the mounting brackets, free of charge. This began November 26, 2014. Owners may contact Lance customer service at 1-661-949-3322.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Thor Motor Coach

thor-255x144Thor Motor Coach (TMC) is recalling certain model year 2015 Challenger, Four Winds 5000, Hurricane, Miramar, Chateau Citation, Chateau, Windsport, and Palazzo motorhomes manufactured April 24, 2014, to December 11, 2014, and equipped with certain Latitude awnings manufactured by Carefree of Colorado. The affected awnings may have screws that attach the lateral arm brackets to the mounting brackets that were not manufactured to specification.

The screws could fail, causing the supporting bracket to fail, and the awning to fall and potentially strike and injure a person beneath it.

TMC will notify owners, and dealers will remove and replace the defective screws, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin January 26, 2015. Owners may contact TMC customer service at 1-877-500-1020. TMC’s number for this recall is RC000097.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Winnebago Industries

winnebago-quality-circle-award-255x144Winnebago Industries, Inc. (Winnebago) is recalling certain model year 2014-2015 Winnebago Trend, Travato, and Itasca Viva motorhomes manufactured November 13, 2014, to December 23, 2015. In the affected vehicles, the Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) may fail to learn the locations of the individual sensors while the vehicle is being driven. As a result, the low tire pressure warning light will illuminate, despite the tire pressures being within specification. Should one of the tires lose air pressure, the driver would not be notified of the change in air pressure. As such, these vehicles fail to comply with the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 138, “Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems.”

If the TPMS light illuminates because the sensors cannot be located, it could mask an actual low tire pressure condition, possibly resulting in tire failure, increasing the risk of a crash.

Winnebago will have Chrysler notify owners, and dealers will update the TPMS module software, free of charge. The manufacturer has not yet provided a notification schedule. Owners may contact Winnebago customer service at 1-800-537-1885. Winnebago’s number for this recall is P62.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Entegra Coach

Entegra-Coach-Color-300x233Entegra Coach (Entegra) is recalling certain model year 2015 Aspire motorhomes manufactured July 14, 2014, to October 29, 2014, and equipped with certain Latitude awnings manufactured by Carefree of Colorado. The affected awnings may have screws that attach the lateral arm brackets to the mounting brackets that were not manufactured to specification.

The screws could fail, causing the supporting bracket to fail, and the awning to fall and potentially strike and injure a person beneath it.

Entegra will notify owners, and dealers will remove and replace the defective screws, free of charge. The manufacturer has not yet provided a notification schedule. Owners may contact Entegra customer service at 1-800-945-4787.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Winnebago Towable

winnebago-quality-circle-award-255x144Winnebago Towable is recalling certain model year 2013-2015 Winnebago Minnie 2201DS and 2450BHS travel trailers manufactured May 7, 2012, to November 13, 2014, and 2013-2015 Sunnybrook Remington 2200DS and 2451BHS travel trailers manufactured May 7, 2013, to November 13, 2014. The axle may contact the black liquid propane pipe fitting, resulting in the fitting cracking or breaking.

If the propane pipe fitting cracks or breaks, propane may leak, increasing the risk of a fire.

Winnebago Towable will notify owners. The remedy for this recall is still under development. The manufacturer has not yet provided a notification schedule. Owners may contact Winnebago Towable customer service at 1-574-825-5250.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Jayco, Inc.

Jayco Color logo birdJayco, Inc. (Jayco) is recalling certain model year 2015 Eagle 30.5 BHLT fifth wheel trailers manufactured March 13, 2014, to August 1, 2014. The affected trailers have incorrect tire size information on the tire label. As such, these trailers fail to comply with the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 110, “Tire Selection and Rims and Motor Home/Recreation Vehicle Trailer Load Carrying Capacity Information for Motor Vehicles with a GVWR of 4,536 kilograms (10,000 pounds) or less.”

If the trailer tires are replaced with the ones listed incorrectly on the label, the trailer may be overloaded, resulting in poor handling or tire failure. Either of these conditions may increase the risk of a crash.

Jayco will notify owners, send them new labels with the corrected information, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin in late-January 2015. Owners may contact Jayco customer service at 1-800-283-8267. Jayco’s number for this recall is 9901227.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Please Note: This is the 48th in a series of articles relating to RV Manufacturers Recalls

Worth Pondering…

Success is peace of mind in knowing you did your best.

—John Wooden

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Lance Introduces Lightweight Truck Camper

Lancaster, California-based Lance Camper Manufacturing Corp., currently celebrating its 50th anniversary, introduced an all-new truck camper model, the 995.

Lance Camper 995 exterior
Lance Camper 995 exterior

The 995 is a 9-foot model with a base dry weight of 3,290-pound base dry weight, 300 to 500 pounds less than competitive models, according to a company news release.

Highlights of this new 995 floor plan include a full wall dinette/refrigerator super slide sitting on an “above the wheel well” floor design. This new floor configuration allows for more space inside the camper, less of a step up into the slide out area and the addition of a slide out storage drawer in the basement area.

“We introduced the above the wheel well floor design on the 1172 model and our owners love it, so we have incorporated it into the new 995 as well,” said Randy Hunter, product development manager.

“This gives our owners an additional 9 inches of interior floor width, which is evident as soon as you walk in.”

The all-new 995 standard features include a very large galley with substantial counter space and built in trash can designed to accommodate today’s most common size of plastic grocery bag, he explained.

Lance Camper 995 interior in Arrowhead decor
Lance Camper 995 interior in Arrowhead decor

The cab-over area features a new radius entry step and all new entertainment center housing the standard blue tooth compatible audio system and optional 24-inch TV.

Available options include an electric rear awning, Lance’s exclusive ultraDECKplus bumper, keyless entry, entry door shade, and new LED docking lights.

The all new full wall super slide, long bed model features above wheel well floor plan design providing maximum living space.

Specifications includes:

Floor Length: 9 feet 11 inches

Overall Length: 18 feet 11 inches

Exterior Width: 96 inches

Exterior Height: 9 feet 1 inch

Interior Height: 80 inches

Dry Weight w/Standard Equipment: 3,290 pounds

Fresh Water Tank Capacity: 45 gallons

Grey Water Tank Capacity: 28 gallons

Lance Camper 995 floor plan
Lance Camper 995 floor plan

Black Water Tank Capacity: 35 gallons

Refrigerator: 6 cubic feet

Propane: 2-5 gallon tanks

Furnace: 20,000 BTU

Sleeping Capacity: 4

Personalize your Lance by selecting from one of three interiors to create both stunning and functional Lance interiors. You’ll find beautiful woods, wall treatments, and fabric combinations with dinette cushions that feature reversible cushions, providing two different looks with each decor. The three available decors include: Arrowhead, Mojave Dunes, and Palm Springs.

Production starts in January with the 995 starring at the Pleasanton, California, and Denver RV shows next month.

Details

Lance Camper Manufacturing Corp.

Lance 50th anniv. logoLancaster, California-based Lance Camper Manufacturing Corp. has been one of the largest and leading manufacturers of truck campers in North America since the company was founded in 1965.

Their line of ultra-light travel trailers is one of the fastest-growing RV lines in the American West.

Lance manufactures from a state-of-the-art production facility—a 141,000 square foot, 22-acre campus.

Factory tours are by appointment only on Wednesday mornings during production cycles.

Address: 43120 Venture Street Lancaster, CA 93535-4510

Phone: (661) 949-3322

Website: www.lancecamper.com

Worth Pondering…

The attraction of recreational vehicle travel is to see the country, visit new places, meet interesting people, and experience the freedom of the open road.

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