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Old 07-19-2014, 03:54 PM   #1
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Done lurking, time to buy!

I've reading & learning a lot & getting close to buying. I want a 30' LY. What are the opinions regarding 2001 chassis or older? 454 vs 8.1? Are the only options paint vs decal, all leather vs just fronts, levelers, multiple awnings vs 1?
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Old 07-19-2014, 04:18 PM   #2
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Welcome to the Forums. We're glad to have you with us. Good luck in your search.
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Old 07-20-2014, 05:27 AM   #3
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You didn't say -- slide or no slide. I can't tell on my driver and passenger seats what is leather and what is vinyl. I only have one awning; would prefer to have on all windows, but not a deal breaker. I think they all came standard with leveling jacks. Older rigs had TV in the dash. Newer, at least 2004 and up, had TV in kitchen/living area and the center dash area was used for storage behind two glass doors. My impression (don't take as fact) is that the 454 has less HP, torque and fuel efficiency than the later 8.1. Again, personal opinion, from what I have seen, the full paint jobs have been excellent. Ours is a 2004 and with an annual wax job, I still get asked if it has been recently repainted. Be aware of the factory stated towing limitations (as I recall, it is 4000 pounds). Again, in my opinion, the year of the rig is less important than its condition and how it was maintained. Best to find a well maintained rig; many out there have very low mileage. Do lots of searching, make a spreadsheet of each unit listing year, miles, options (very few options on these rigs), condition, etc. Take your time. Go to a rally and talk with owners. You have a local WBCCI unit in Denver and they have a Rally scheduled in Yuma, CO in early Sept. Also, there will be a Region rally (covers CO, AZ, NM, UT in Sante Fe, NM in mid-September. Ask lots of questions on the list.

Welcome to the list and keep the questions coming. In the 70's when we lived in Golden, we went to Lafayette to a little Italian restrurant. Don't remember the name.

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Old 07-20-2014, 08:14 AM   #4
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Thanks for the replies. I've been trying to sort out what was optional on these to fix a value. This will be our 1st MH & if we like it there may be another so I will be careful of what I pay. Many sellers look at NADA & add what I'm finding was standard. That's also why I'm thinking of staying in this century. I've seen them w/o levelers & w/decals but what else? slide would be great but I think it adds a lot of value, more than what I want to pay, from what I've seen. I am looking all over the country so it's 1st trip will be to Colorado. And Sam the restaurant was probably the Blue Parrot? Gary
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Old 07-20-2014, 08:18 AM   #5
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I have a GMC Savanna van with a 8.1L engine and would love to have it in my LY. The 8.1L engine is a dream to drive. Tons of power and decent fuel economy. Given a choice between it and the 454 I would go 8.1 any day.
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Old 07-20-2014, 03:30 PM   #6
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Smile 1998 land yacht p30

I have the 454 engine and have been very pleased with this engine. I avg 10 mpg. I took it around Lake Superior and it performed well. As for a slide out, if you are going to stay in one location for a period of time a slide out is nice. If you are doing a lot of one or two night stays you don't need a slide out. I don't have a slide out and really didn't want one because they are just another maintenance item and a source of leaks. I also don't have hydraulic levers and just use leveling blocks. However, this being said hydraulic levelers would be nice but not a must have. The land yacht is a terrific motorhome.
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Old 07-20-2014, 07:11 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by garypk View Post
I've reading & learning a lot & getting close to buying. I want a 30' LY. What are the opinions regarding 2001 chassis or older? 454 vs 8.1? Are the only options paint vs decal, all leather vs just fronts, levelers, multiple awnings vs 1?
454 was used for a lot of years before 2000, right after 2000 they switched to Workhorse, others mention 454 as a great engine, my experience is that it is enough power to handle the load, but as you go up in years, hp is increased and towing capacity too. All options cost, AS buyers generally bought the options, mine came with awnings over most window, except front and back the two A/C handle the load much easier with them. 50 amp was an option but few have it, and it take 50 to run both a/c's simultaneously, with 30 you have to alternate or use the generator to run both at the same time. Leveler are nice but most campgrounds are level and if you don't mind the movement not really needed.
You can upgrade engine, towing capacity, wiring, tv's, everything is available but only you can say what is needed vs what is nice to have. Price plus options and don't forget you will need tires and all rubber goods, if original.
It took two years of looking before I found my perfect AS, and still managed to upgrade tv, toilet, wiring, tires, window treatments, replaced all brake pads, flushed systems, and still can find things to do.
Chef informed me she would like new back splash behind stove, getting it together at this time, while at it running in a new outlet at stove and fixing the hood vent. All jobs entail more than meets the eye.
Good Luck on finding the perfect RV.
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Old 07-20-2014, 07:48 PM   #8
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Thanks Dave! Yours sounds & looks close to perfect,why dont'cha bring it on over here?LOL Do you have a build sheet on yours that says what was standard & optional from the factory? Gary
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Old 07-21-2014, 06:30 AM   #9
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Thanks Dave! Yours sounds & looks close to perfect,why dont'cha bring it on over here?LOL Do you have a build sheet on yours that says what was standard & optional from the factory? Gary
Attached specs from a 1999 very few changes from mine, if not listed then it was an option, by the way being a custom maker they would add anything possible if the buyer wanted it, so specs for options may not exist

I was under the misconception tow capacity of mine was 3000 pounds but this list shows 4000, my hitch is 5000, but I can tell the difference when pulling my Fit or my Ranger by the time it shifts. 2500 vs. 4000.

Still have west on the to do list, had been waiting for good weather, now it is the finding the time between fires.

ps. checked txt attachment and it added a lot of strange stuff, in the conversion from pdf to txt.
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File Type: txt airstream specifications 1999.txt (5.1 KB, 38 views)
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Old 07-21-2014, 06:33 AM   #10
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Gary, this rig is on a list at the present (2004 Airstream Land Yacht 30' Gas Motorhome (C) | ViewRVs.com) No slide and twin beds. Twins can be a deal breaker, but if you like twin beds, it may help the price. I think prior posts covered what might be optional equipment on the Land Yachts. Awnings was a big ticket item for an option, as was 50 amp service. Both ACs are standard as are the hydraulic levelors and two TVs on newer rigs. If you are going to be in the hot weather much, it is good to be able to run the second AC. A separate 20 amp feed can be added to feed the rear AC. I haven't looked at the NADA prices in a long while, but when I was in the market, they seemed to be fairly accurate for MHs, if they had not double dipped on the options. Some people would take the base price that includes all the standard equipment and then add items like ACs as an add on to the price. We stay in one place for extended periods and really like the slide. It sure openes up the living area. My wife is sensitive to movements in the rig, so we always deploy the hydraulic levelors. As a suggestion, when you find an interesting unit, ask the seller to send you a copy of the window sticker (build sheet). Also, 26 ft LYs are the least expensive to get into, but the corner bed is a problem for some. As a plus, the short lenght and lighter weight makes this a very peppy rig.

Sam
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Old 07-21-2014, 05:39 PM   #11
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Yes I saw that thanks. Actually been communicating w/ owner of 2001,full paint,full leather, multi awnings & levelers 42000mi, asking 20000. Trigger finger got stuck, he just called me to tell me it's sold. I will find mine!
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Old 07-22-2014, 10:48 PM   #12
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Our 2005 LY had a visit to Banks by the PO and some suspension add-ons. I have no comparisons but have no drivetrain performance problems. I was just looking, but the options list is not scanned right now, but I have 2004 and 2006 owner's manuals.

The 8.1 has been very reliable but with only ~20K miles I had to replace the cat converters to pass smog last year. The rest is the usual stuff when you have a home on wheels, and we have not gone for long runs yet since I am still working full time.

When you do get up into the northern tier, make sure you get to the backside of Mt. Rushmore--it is a cheeky view.
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Old 08-02-2014, 10:16 PM   #13
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Dave, how about a picture or description of your new backsplash?
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Old 08-03-2014, 02:25 PM   #14
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Dave, how about a picture or description of your new backsplash?
Back and side splash was Chef's idea, all I did was the work
The new outlets replace single duplex and PO's addition of an electric bar, we only need one for the coffee pot which we had but I wanted to be able to monitor both circuits of the new 50 amp service, so one duplex is the normal ground faulted at breaker box and second one is the ground faulted at the duplex but is on the second circuit that is feeding the rear a/c.
Formica sheeting flatest surface without grooves for easy cleanup of the galley by Chef or even me.
Found a partial sheet at cabinet shop, used liquid nails for bathroom surround to stick it to existing vinyl covered plywood, I did put in a couple of screws just to make sure(hidden behind hood. Trim wood supplied by AS, reused two 4 inch pieces found in outlet box they used as a filler.
You will notice the hood light is different, LED subtituted for poorly installed halogen bulb that only lit the floor in front of stove not the dark back corner of the stove. While I had the microwave out I moved the refrigerator thermometer to the front.
Marine refrigerator magnet placed on the only metal surface in the AS.
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