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Old 12-22-2012, 08:58 PM   #1
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1993 36' Land Yacht
jackson , Tennessee
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The Epitome of Weird

In September of 2010 I bought a 1993 36' foot Land Yacht on a whim thinking my wife and I wud enjoy a modicum of camping.

After years of competitive motorcycle and car racing I thought this deal wud be carefree.

I was wrong.

I never competed on surfaces that had lines or speed limits. But suddenly I found myself trying to pilot this huge vehicle between lines and speed limits. I have driven it in some of the most impossible conditions you can imagine like the upper reaches of the Cumberland Plateau in Tn. with ice on the road.

But I still can not get comfortable with it. I get passed by 45 foot Prevosts at 75 mph on I40 while I am white knuckling it at 63 mph on my way to Nashville.

Bottom line...this thing scares me. Is it me? I will have to drive it down a narrow two lane road Tuesday to get it back to a waterfront spot we have on Kentucky Lake. I have pins in both arms and one leg from my racing career. Why does this vehicle freak me out so bad?

Is it time to sell?
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Old 12-22-2012, 09:19 PM   #2
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Yes... If you are not having fun, do something else.
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Old 12-22-2012, 09:25 PM   #3
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Absolutely, driving white knuckle and not having fun means it is time to stop doing that and on to something else you can have actually have fun with.
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Old 12-22-2012, 09:28 PM   #4
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How does your wife feel about driving it?
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Old 12-22-2012, 09:53 PM   #5
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1992 36' Land Yacht
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My first question is: Why do you feel like you're white knuckling it? Is it the handling? The braking? The lack of power? Or is it the feeling of it being huge?

Some of the above can be related to age and component deterioration. I have a 92 36' land yacht and have found that the lack of braking and power makes mine a bit of a pain to drive but I think that some work on the brakes would make a huge difference.

PS: Post some pics of your unit. I love to see LY's of the same era.
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Old 12-22-2012, 11:04 PM   #6
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1988 32' Excella
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 92landyacht View Post
My first question is: Why do you feel like you're white knuckling it? Is it the handling? The braking? The lack of power? Or is it the feeling of it being huge?

Some of the above can be related to age and component deterioration. I have a 92 36' land yacht and have found that the lack of braking and power makes mine a bit of a pain to drive but I think that some work on the brakes would make a huge difference.

PS: Post some pics of your unit. I love to see LY's of the same era.
I agree with this your MH is now 20 years old if the suspension is original it's shot, heck if it was all replaced 10 year ago some of your suspension is probably shot.
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Old 12-22-2012, 11:54 PM   #7
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Age really doesn't have as much effect on your suspension as wear and tear from mileage. But I believe the more important issue is that you are driving a 20 year old design truck, not a race car or motorcycle. That is not to say it is bad or unsafe, just that it is quite different.

My Airstream is 11 years older than yours and last year we took a 4 month trip from Washington State up and around the Canadian Maritime, down the Blue ridge Parkway and back to Washington with no problem.

Have the suspension checked out to be sure it is in serviceable condition and then try to put a little faith in your coach and relax a bit. You may find that you can sit back, relax and enjoy the ride.

Good luck, Dan
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Old 12-23-2012, 12:35 AM   #8
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I am not sure what chassis you have there. Is it a pusher with a tag???

Most handling problems, if the vehicle is up to specs, are due to improper weight distribution and improper tire pressure. The other problem is the greater the ratio of WB to length exceeds 53% the more handling problems you will have.( eg, Clipper is 228" WB / length = ratio.)

If you are happy with that length of vehicle but would like to upgrade, Airstream A36' A37s, 2000 and up on the Freightliner Straight Rail Chassis are available now at reasonable prices and these units should handle like a Caddy. Some of the last produced were on the Raised Rail Chassis.

2003 AIRSTREAM - National Multi List,The Largest Database of Used Recreational Vehicles,Boats,Pre-Owned Homes,Properties.

My Clipper is on the Raised Rail Chassis and is a dream to drive in town or on any highway.

If you have a quality unit that is well maintained, you should only be smiling, not griding your teeth.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by bukib View Post
But I still can not get comfortable with it. I get passed by 45 foot Prevosts at 75 mph on I40 while I am white knuckling it at 63 mph on my way to Nashville.
Bottom line...this thing scares me. Is it me? I will have to drive it down a narrow two lane road Tuesday to get it back to a waterfront spot we have on Kentucky Lake. I have pins in both arms and one leg from my racing career. Why does this vehicle freak me out so bad?
Is it time to sell?
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Old 12-23-2012, 06:08 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bukib View Post

But I still can not get comfortable with it. I get passed by 45 foot Prevosts at 75 mph on I40 while I am white knuckling it at 63 mph on my way to Nashville.
I-40 through Tennessee gives me stress and white knuckles and I am only pulling a 25' AS with a pickup truck. I feel your pain. I opt for the two lane roads as much as possible to reduce the stress and avoid the white knuckles. The journey should be part of fun.
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Old 12-23-2012, 01:08 PM   #10
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1993 36' Land Yacht
jackson , Tennessee
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My unit is a pusher on a spartan chassis. Handling isnt really the problem I feel. It is the only MH I have ever driven so I really don't have anything to compare it to.
The two lane idea is very appealing. The Natchez Trace Parkway beats I55 anytime. Thanks.
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Old 12-23-2012, 01:50 PM   #11
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Not to analyze too much, but I just can't help it, sounds like basic fear to me. The visceral, gut-deep kind.

It's not a good feeling, and certainly not something you want to be experiencing simultaneously with driving a rig that big. Who knows why, exactly, and does it really matter?

Bottom line, it's there, it's debilitating and I believe potentially a danger on the road. It could affect your reflexes, don'tcha think? It would affect mine. Might be a little PTSD from wherever/whatever.

My husband does most of the driving of our ittle rig, although I can and do drive. There are some situations where I am just plain scared, though, and would never drive but for an emergency. And, it's okay.

I would do something else. It's not fun for you. Find something smaller, that doesn't give you those feelings.

Life is too short.


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Old 12-23-2012, 02:03 PM   #12
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If it isn't fun, do do it.
If you don't feel safe, you aren't.
We have owned four Airstreams and as many SOB travel trailers and have towed throughout these United States since 1976.
We thought we might prefer a motor-home, so we test drove one from Albuquerque to Moriarty, NM and back on I-40.
It was a disaster!
Could not wait to pull that thing back into the dealer's lot.
I didn't enjoy it, and I didn't feel safe.
So, don't feel bad about following your instincts.
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Old 12-23-2012, 03:00 PM   #13
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Biloxi , Mississippi
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To some degree I felt the same when I first got my little Bambi II and was towing with an Xtera. White knuckle is being kind to the way I felt. I traded in the Xtera for a proper TV, a 2012 F150 SCREW Ecoboost and now I look forward to every trip. I am sure it was mostly in my head but towing with the Xtera was a very nervous experience. The Ford on the other hand is a real joy to drive.
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Old 12-23-2012, 06:07 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bukib View Post
Why does this vehicle freak me out so bad?
Have to agree with everyone else; if it ain't fun, try something else. But, until you find out WHY it's no fun, there's a good chance your next one will be no fun, too.

Sitting so much higher than you're used to sitting could be part of the problem. This causes you to feel the vehicle swaying more than you would if you were sitting lower. Especially in a crosswind. Your eyes say you're still in your lane, but your inner ear says you're drifting out of it. This leads you to constantly try to correct a problem that isn't there, to the point that you over-correct.

Sound familiar? If it does, then it's not necessarily the size of the rig that's the problem, and you should be fine pulling a trailer instead of driving a motorhome. If if doesn't sound like your problem, then I obviously don't know what I'm talking about and I'll shut up and go away.
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