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Old 12-06-2012, 08:23 PM   #43
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Btw, Aluminitus is an incurable condition...
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Old 12-06-2012, 08:24 PM   #44
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Back again...
The big ones are cheaper than mid-sized ones since they require bigger tow vehicle and more fuel per mile, and are losing popularity..

I believe, and others do here, that you could tow a 25 or 27 with new Ford F-150 Club Cab and V6 Ecoboost with towing package.. Others wil suggest a full F-250 with Diesel is the way to go... A number have reported towing well with the F-150 here...

You also asked about annual "Thrill-of-Ownership" costs, associated with maintenance, taxes, storage, etc.. Those really do vary by state, since registration and tax is a big component. Maintenance should be less than a couple hundred averaged per year, for things like brake checks, bearing repacks, filters and appliance checks, until things start to fail.. Indoor storage (large warehouse/storage barns..) is better than outdoors, especially in areas of thunderstorms, hail, wind and excitement.. The cost of storage rises in linear fashion as you get closer to big city center.. Decent average forecast might be $150/mo indoors, theough may be hard to find.

One additional reminder to consider used or gently used, unless you need "new dealer financing" to make it work.. When new ones are driven off the lot, they depreciate a bunch (like cars, only sometimes more..) and if you discover you have made an error in judgment, there is no inexpensive escape.. With a good used unit, you have a good chance of selling it for what you paid...
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Old 12-06-2012, 09:50 PM   #45
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Yeah, I guess I figured that about the variance in maintenance costs. Hopefully I can find a facility outside of birmingham that is reasonable to store it when not in use.

Ideally, the house I buy I will figure out some way to build storage on the property in the back of the house out of view....but this is highly unlikely...although there are a number of subdivisions we are looking into that have no home owner's association etc...so, its possible...im going to be looking...perhaps I can find a place to store it on the cheap....150 per month seems rather spendy as a long term solution...at that rate or higher I could buy a piece of land and build a building on it

Interestingly, my wife gets home tonight and we are talking about it. I was talking about in spring of 2013 we could rent an RV and hit the gulf for a week vacation. She asked "why would we rent?". I told her I wanted to be sure she enjoyed RV'ing.

Ive been with my wife married now for over 5 years together for nearly 11 years - thought I knew everything about her, but she went on to tell me how growing up she RV'ed frequently with a best friend of hers and she loves RV'ing....odd, I had no idea...I thought this was going to be a subject that she would need more motivation or first hand convincing...

On that note, in 2018 we will be through with student loans...nearly 3k more per month!! We had been considering buying a lakehouse to enjoy with the kids, but with us both working like we do, we began to hate the idea of paying a big house payment, having to go out and cut the grass, maintenance it, pay insurance, etc....She now thinks buying a nice TT will serve the purpose of what we want...we could even buy a lake property without a house and park our TT on it...maybe build a dock on it

I am super excited now....if/when the time comes it is ON.

Wife is now looking forward to going to a rally later in 2013 once the earliest baby phases phase out. We can in the next year figure out what size/model we want to use.....but with this level of commitment from the wifey, the sky is the limit!!

Regarding TV....I guess it all depends on if we go 25, 27, or 30 or 30+

Best TV for a 30? I guess if wife is so gung ho now, best long term option may be a diesel....we shall see I guess
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Old 12-06-2012, 09:51 PM   #46
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love the name btw - condoluminum - catchy
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Old 12-07-2012, 11:51 PM   #47
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Regarding TV....I guess it all depends on if we go 25, 27, or 30 or 30+

Best TV for a 30? I guess if wife is so gung ho now, best long term option may be a diesel....we shall see I guess
We pull our '27 International with a 2010 Tundra 4x4 CrewMax with the 5.7L V8 and it works great for us towing and as a daily driver. However, if we were in a longer rig I would want a 3/4 ton TV.
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Old 12-08-2012, 08:17 AM   #48
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That tundra rude comfy?
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Old 12-08-2012, 08:44 AM   #49
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I tow with an Excursion 4x4. besides being a 3/4 ton, I am 6'7" and the room is very generous inside! without the third row installed, I have 6' of cargo space behind the back seat. I also like the three door rear hatch (lift gate over barn doors); it allows easy access without banging your head on the lift gate!
As far as an SUV goes, in the 3/4 ton, i believe you are limited to a used excursion (out of production in 2006) and a suburban 2500. both have diesel options.
The tow vehicle question gets a lot of opinions and good discussion on the forums... (a touchy subject). There are many good options available with many configurations and hitch setups. The most important thing is to be safe, drive something you are comfortable with and meets your needs... and of course have fun!

I am wondering if you will be able to hold out as long as you are planning to... that aluminum sure is shiny
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Old 12-08-2012, 02:39 PM   #50
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I tow with an Excursion 4x4. besides being a 3/4 ton, I am 6'7" and the room is very generous inside! without the third row installed, I have 6' of cargo space behind the back seat. I also like the three door rear hatch (lift gate over barn doors); it allows easy access without banging your head on the lift gate!
As far as an SUV goes, in the 3/4 ton, i believe you are limited to a used excursion (out of production in 2006) and a suburban 2500. both have diesel options.
The tow vehicle question gets a lot of opinions and good discussion on the forums... (a touchy subject). There are many good options available with many configurations and hitch setups. The most important thing is to be safe, drive something you are comfortable with and meets your needs... and of course have fun!

I am wondering if you will be able to hold out as long as you are planning to... that aluminum sure is shiny
I have not even began to ponder SUV vs. pickup...In reading the 25 vs. 27 FB thread, I am leaning toward 25 really...lovin that 25 FB eddie bower model that has the rear hatch...that is too cool....that model I could easily pull with just about any 2500 model SUV or pickup I am assuming - diesel or gas...so I would simply have to make my mind up.

I like the premise that diesel lasts for a very much longer time...I have a VW diesel wagon and love it but that is just a whole other matter.

WIthout my having any real towing experience of these, my opinion is limited...consensus is not narrow in this matter of TV's...where does that leave a newb?

I figure since ill have the budget I will just go 2/3 ton...then I can decide which vehicle will meet our space and comfort needs for a growing family. Suburban sounds pretty sweet, but I bet it is quite spendy

Ive had good success with carmax...hmmm...
2005 Ford Excursion Eddie Bauer in Fredericksburg, VA- 8751723 at carmax.com

Depending on how things go with selling our current house (about to put it up on the market and buy a new house in our area as prices are amazing) - there is a decent chance that wife would even want to buy the AS in time for our next vacation...possibly may 2013 - but more likely will be in feb 2014...
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Old 12-08-2012, 02:46 PM   #51
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but something like this with a camper top would be pretty nice too perhaps

2010 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 LT in Nashville, TN- 8874191 at carmax.com

oh man, I can see how TV is a hot topic...so many choices....

As long as it will easily pull my load, be safe, and is as comfy as feasible then ill be fine..
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Old 12-08-2012, 02:56 PM   #52
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ill have to do some thinking more about truck vs. SUV...first thing that comes to mind is bicycles...may be easier in a truck bed...but then again, may be better on top of the SUV...how do you AS folks do bicycles? I saw in passing on a thread that folks do not put them on the back of the AS...I guess If I go eddie bauer they can go in the rear hatch when in transit?
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Old 12-08-2012, 11:51 PM   #53
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That tundra rude comfy?
The Tundra ride is VERY comfy. Tons of room in the front seats and MEGA room on the rear seats in the CrewMax version.

Happy hunting,
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Old 12-09-2012, 12:31 AM   #54
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yeah, ive been just reading the TV threads till my eyeballs hurt....ive heard good things about the tundra crewmax...that V8 is supposed to be rock solid....ford ecoboost looks nice too but jeez...spendy....

What I will eventually need is a comprehensive lists of pros and cons for SUV vs. PU and figure out what I will want to use....if I do much boon-docking and use a generator, seems that would be better with a PU....I have concerns about bikes in an SUV...and the SUV's can be more spendy (although some used ones on carmax do not seem that bad)

Well, ill have plenty of time to think about it and research...wife was all excited about it, but balked when I suggested *perhaps* getting the TV and TT prior to may to make for our beach vacation....she would rather wait till feb 2014 - we will have a bit better of a budget then...shes probably right, but much of that depends on how our house sells...got my finders crossed, but im not holding my breath...we are at least not going to be underwater but boy did we lose alot of money in this house back in 2008...bought it at 185k...did probably 40k in improvements - I have no idea what it will sell for - pre-appraisal will be wed - that should give us some idea...but its looking like 160-190 and we owe 159 on the loan......oh well...at least the buying prices are good right now, but to walk away from this house with no equity really hurts...if I could get 15K in equity, that would seem like a gift...hopin'
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Old 12-12-2012, 06:21 PM   #55
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Life is all about choices.. Sounds like you have a full platter of them, but glad to hear no sales trial required to both get hooked.. Summarizing dome of the better ideas..
1. Visiting a local Rally or gathering and talking to owners is a great way to learn a lot first-hand, though it also creates temptations.. Even if you rent a Brand X RV and just hang out, you'll learn a lot.
2. Open trucks favor generators in beds and lots of stuff in trucks.. Closed trucks (Suburbans/Excursions) favor riding comfort and passengers, but it's engine and chassis and hitching that correlate with towing peace of mind.
3. Bikes on back of trailers frowned upon here for bouncing load on frame and potential to cause "frame sag" and separation of frame from shell at rear.. Not a problem for some trailers with beefy frames and short rear overhangs, but trouble only really if rear bumber more than 10-12' from wheel wells/rear axles, and frame is light version.. You could put on rack on top of Suburban, but would need ladder to reach, or mount rack on top of Pickup Shell, and be a little easier to reach.. Some buy folding bikes for inside travel, and some tie down inside trailers...
4. Getting out of house right-side up sounds like small victory, and hope it works.. Our "Condo with Wheels" is way more fun than "Lake House" since we can choose which lake to park it near every time we are ready to take a trip.. You'll really like having your own bed, stuff, food choices and recreation options (from games to bikes to books..) which you can carry along on each outing, even if for only a weekend...
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Old 12-13-2012, 10:47 AM   #56
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4. Getting out of house right-side up sounds like small victory, and hope it works.. Our "Condo with Wheels" is way more fun than "Lake House" since we can choose which lake to park it near every time we are ready to take a trip.. You'll really like having your own bed, stuff, food choices and recreation options (from games to bikes to books..) which you can carry along on each outing, even if for only a weekend...
Pr-appraisal report will be available tomorrow...but only time will tell...will have house on the market in about 1 week then we just wait and see.

Good news also appears that the homes we want are in an even lower price point than we thought before...this is VERY good news....the prognosis for 2014 is increasingly good

Plenty of time to keep researching too.

thanks for advice and pointers...keep em coming...

When it comes time to pull the trigger, I have many questions about where to buy, pricing...etc...

One thing I am wondering is how will I get my AS serviced and repaired in my area...there appears to be a dealer here that sells a small number of AS's, but I am wondering if they will be good, and if service will mean a long haul somewhere for repairs? If I buy it new from them there will I presume be a warranty period...how does all that work.

I will perhaps be looking for gently used new/used model though preferable to save the cash! When that time came I would want to have someone conduct a thorough inspection for me.....

If we finance some of the cost at that time, buying used or new from a dealer or directly from AS will be perhaps a bit easier...I will need to do more research on options for buying, understanding how I determine pricing, logistics of that etc....
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