5th Wheel or Class A...and why?

Discussion in 'Camping at Disney World' started by Minnie&Mickey, Nov 18, 2008.

  1. Minnie&Mickey

    Minnie&Mickey I want to live at the Fort!

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    Hi everyone,
    Most of you don't know me :-)wave2: Hi Donna!), but I am a daily lurker on this board. My husband and I want to buy an RV so that we can camp at the Fort (and other places), but we are having a lot of difficulty deciding whether we should get a Class A or a 5th wheel. We are DVC members and love it, but would like to be able to take our dog along on vacations instead of having to find a dog-sitter. If we get a 5th wheel, my husband will have to buy an new truck (which he desperately needs anyway), but if we buy a Class A, we will need to tow a car when we go on trips. In most cases, it will just be the two of us and the dog, but occassionally our grown kids might want to come along.

    The weird thing is that one week we think we should buy a Class A, and we go out looking at them and love them, and the next day someone says something about 5th wheels and then we think we should probably get one of them instead.

    So here is my question...if you have a Class A or a 5th Wheel, what do you love about it and why? Regardless of which one we go with, they will both be around the same size.

    Thanks for helping us with this decision!
     
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  3. CCIntrigue

    CCIntrigue Fort Wilderness Veteran

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    There are advantages to either setup, and ultimately you have to decide what's most important for your particular situation.

    We camped in a travel trailer for 20 years and went to a MH two years ago after spending years debating new TT vs 5th wheel vs MH. I would never want to go back! MH is so much more comfortable to travel in. DH is one of those people who can drive for hours without a break. If I want a snack, need a bathroom break, or just need to stretch my legs I can do it without having to make a stop. The dog can wander around and play. And the view is great!

    MPG is better in our MH than it was with the F-350 towing an Airstream. But mileage in our toad is about 3 times what it was with the F-350. We tow my Miata and a golf cart on a Featherlite car carrier, and it doesn't affect our MPG. We take the car/cart with us about 50% of the time -- depends on where we're going. Occasionally rent a car for a few days.

    Setup and takedown are much easier/quicker in a MH. I could go on and on ...
     
  4. Shan-man

    Shan-man ¿sɐɯʇsıɹɥɔ lıʇ, sʎɐp ʎuɐɯ ʍoH

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    I would normally say that for a couple traveling alone, class As are generally a better fit (for all the reasons CCIntrigue mentioned). Most 5th wheels are designed to maximize sleeping capacity for families. I love my class A, but you have mentioned that you meet the main criteria that would make one prefer a 5th wheel... you have need of a new truck as well as wanting an RV. If you have regular need for a super heavy duty truck anyhow, buying a class A and a dinghy as well (which would sit idle much of the time[?], not good for engines) doesn't make sense (to me, at least).
     
  5. becky1960

    becky1960 DIS Veteran

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    MH would be nice if you financially able to maintain one, we have a 5th wheel. I would argue about Mpg as we get about 12-13 mpg with a Crewcab dually, and a motorhome I once took to Fw got about 7-8. Some of the other people I talk to get more on their 5th wheel setup than I do.

    As the previous poster stated the MH is a lot more easier to travel in..
     
  6. Donna

    Donna Where Magic Lives

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    hi holly! i see you are still deciding what to get! Wish i lived closer; it sure would be fun for us to go RV shopping; I love them all, A's, C's and 5th wheels. For some reason, i see you in an A, just seems easier to me, for 2 people to set up and I think your dog would love going down the highway looking out the window!
    Good Luck!
     
  7. Shaun and Amy

    Shaun and Amy Earning My Ears

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    Hey there!

    Well what an adventure! I think there certainly are pros and cons to each. Probably the best thing is to write it all out so you can see it on paper. We have a 40' fifth wheel that we tow with a Freightliner. Last winter we were getting ready to purchase a new RV and test drove and looked at motorhomes, but ended up with a fifth wheel again. A couple of reasons why we stayed with a fifth wheel were: I didn't really want to have to tow a car. I just don't care for that idea. Another is that in talking with many motorhome owners we always seem to get better mileage by at least 2-4 miles.

    It's a really hard decision. One thing to look at is will you have to sacrifice quailty between the two. You could spend much less on a fifth wheel and get top of the line quality because you won't be buying the chassis for the motorhome to sit on. Also, you can easily keep your truck and change fifth wheels or vise versa if you want to.

    Good luck in your search. Either way I would pay alot of attention to quality and structure.
     
  8. LarryJ

    LarryJ Dedicated FW 1600 "Looper"

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    I would caution one about expecting to get anything over around 9 to 11 mpg towing any high profile 5er or TT and that is for a diesel. The older Cummins (5.9 diesel) got the best mpg and could approach 11 or even 12 with some trailers, but I would plan on the 9 to 11 figure. MHs towable RVs especially gassers get less mpg and the 7 to 9 is more in the ball park from everything that I have read.

    We've been traveling in a full sized Van since the late 1970's all over the U.S. and would never have anything else for taking road trips, but that's a personal preference and it limits us to regular Travel Trailers. MHs are nice, but we just don't want to spend all our time in the same atmosphere 24/7.

    Larry
     
  9. LORNADUCK

    LORNADUCK DIS Veteran

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    My DH and I have had 8 units, one of them was a 5th wheel all the rest either class C or A. We prefer the Class A. He loves driving it and hated driving the 5th wheel. I like traveling in the A. We ususally don't take a car. I pack enough for where we are going especially the FT. We are going to get a tow dolly soon, but have been fine without it. We have a trailer for our golf cart and take that to the FT.
     
  10. clkelley

    clkelley <font color=purple>I squealed really loud!!<br><fo

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    Here are some cons to a Class A vs. a 5th wheel.

    If the engine goes bad on your coach, then it's possible you have to get rid of the entire coach.
    If the truck goes bad you just replace the truck and you still have your 5th wheel.

    If you are on the highway and have mechanical troubles, then the entire coach has to go to the repair shop and you have to stay in a hotel/motel.

    If you have a 5th wheel, then the truck can go to the repair shop and you and your 5th wheel can be towed to a campground and can relax in your "home"
     
  11. loveDmouse

    loveDmouse <font color=red>Mickey was first<br><font color=ro

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    I love our Class A. (We started with a Class C.) I like the ability on long trips to get up to go to the bathroom or grab a snack or drink. My husband drives until we need gas so usually when we stop for gas I fix us a quick bit for lunch and we are on our way.
    Our dog has room to stretch out. It is just the two of us and our one dog who loves to travel. (other one is a homebody)

    We have never had a trailer or 5th wheel and we wouldn't. We enjoy our motorhome too much.

    I am sure everyone has pros and cons to both. The question really is, What fits you?

    Have fun deciding.
     
  12. stacktester

    stacktester DIS Veteran

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    Deciding what camper is best can be a hard decision. If it's going to just be the two of you like you said, then a Class A probably would work fine. If the family you mentioned comes often then a 5th wheel would fit better.

    One thing I've noticed about moho's is that they'll be like 10 years old and have only 50k miles or so on them because they're a point A to point B driver. The bad thing is unless you're really going to use it a lot is the thing sitting. Engines weren't built to sit up. The valve seals, gaskets, hoses and other parts weren't designed to get heated up and then sit for weeks. This is just my opinion I'm not a mechanic.
     
  13. Minnie&Mickey

    Minnie&Mickey I want to live at the Fort!

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    Oh my gosh! Thank you so much for all the replies!!! You guys have given me so much to think about. Originally, my husband wanted a Class A and I wanted a 5th wheel. Then we went to a RV show and suddenly I wanted a Class A and he wanted a 5th wheel. We've gone back and forth like this for months. I've found a used 2005 Pace Arrow online that looks great (for a great price) and I want to go look at it this weekend, but after looking at another 5th wheel at a dealership yesterday, I'm thinking maybe we really should go that route. I've been begging my husband to buy a new truck for a couple of years now, and if we get a 5th wheel, he will be forced to buy one. By the way, would he have to have a dually to pull one, or will something like an F-250 work?

    Once again, thanks for all the great advice! I'm going to read all of the responses to my husband so that we can discuss this a little bit more. I guess I am just so afraid of making a big expensive mistake.
     
  14. Minnie&Mickey

    Minnie&Mickey I want to live at the Fort!

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    Yes, I think you definitely need to go on a little mini-vacation to Georgia to help us decide! I think you are right about Jazz...he would love looking out that great big window! I wish that motorhomes and 5th wheels weren't so expensive...I wouldn't be stressing over my decision so much if they were cheap! LOL!
     
  15. MadFF

    MadFF Mouseketeer

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    You've been begging your husband to buy a new truck and he hasn't yet?? :upsidedow Actually, it probably has worked out best for you, as the deals on new trucks are incredible these days.

    Single rear wheel or dually? Depends on the weight of the 5th wheel and the capacity of the truck. But you can get single rear wheel trucks that have almost the capacity of duallys... Most people I've talked to like pulling with the duallys better.

    Class A or 5th wheel?

    Well, if you need a new truck anyways, getting the 5th wheel means less maintenance (no engine) and less taxes (usually!). Depending on the model, usually 5th wheels will have more "living" space, including possibly two bedrooms and / or bunks for extra people.

    Class A is much better for extended driving, because as many have said you have your bathroom and room to stretch. You can even switch drivers (should be done at a rest stop! ;) ) and one person can take a nap in a real bed. A lot more comfortable than a reclined truck seat.

    After saying all this, I have not owned a 5th wheel or Class A, so take all this with a grain of salt!

    Have fun shopping!
     
  16. loveDmouse

    loveDmouse <font color=red>Mickey was first<br><font color=ro

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    A good thing to do is spend lots of time in each kind. Visualize yourself "living" in that unit. See how functionable it is for your needs.
    I went back and forth and back and forth between two Class As. Even sitting on the toilet to see how the room was in the bathroom. :lmao:

    I wouldn't have to beg my husband to get a new truck. He would be all over that. :rotfl:
     
  17. Shan-man

    Shan-man ¿sɐɯʇsıɹɥɔ lıʇ, sʎɐp ʎuɐɯ ʍoH

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    I just wanted to reiterate that since you say you need a new truck anyway, a 5th wheel seems to be a natural choice. We would not have a daily need for a truck, much less a heavy duty truck. We have a class A, but we do not tow, and our used MoHo cost less than most tow vehicles. If we do add a dinghy, it will be a compact car that we will use as a daily driver. In your situation, it sounds like if you got a class A, you would want to add a dinghy, and you would still have an old pickup you'd still want updated!

    BTW, I think if I had a 5er, I'd feel more comfortable towing with a dually if for no other reason that if there was a blowout there is another tire to control the load. But I seem to attract blowouts!
     
  18. Minnie&Mickey

    Minnie&Mickey I want to live at the Fort!

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    LOL! I know, my husband is really weird about his stupid pickup truck. It's a 1998 Ford Ranger, the paint is pealing off of it, and it has almost 150,000 miles on it. It's really embarrassing because I've had several new cars over the past 10 years, and he just keeps driving his little truck! Every time we go out to look at a new truck for him, he looks at the gas mileage on the sticker and says "Never mind!" :confused3
     
  19. Minnie&Mickey

    Minnie&Mickey I want to live at the Fort!

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    I think you might be right. My problem is that the 5th wheel that I have fallen in love with is a little pricey. If I add the cost of a truck to that, I'll be paying more than the used Class A that I found which is a bigger RV. The only possibility is that if my husband buys a truck, it can be purchased through our business (we own a liquor store). I'm just not sure if he would be willing to do that.

    LOL! Remind me never to ride in a car with you! ;)
     
  20. MadFF

    MadFF Mouseketeer

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    That is a very legitimate thing to do! Our TT has a very tight bathroom... so from experience, I tell people to sit on the "pot" to see how everything works! (need a smilie "reading the paper" here!)
     
  21. njcamper95

    njcamper95 Mouseketeer

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    My opinion is if you will use it a lot then a class a would be a consideration if you will only use it 2-3 weeks a year then i would really think more about the 5 er worst thing for a motor is sitting around so unless you get lots of vacation time or are retired i would steer away from the MH sitting for long periods isn't great on either but alot worse on the MH plus sounds like your DH could use the new truck i just got a 08 chevy 2500 they are having some great deals on them right now they took over 12,000$ off the sticker price its only 13 $ more then my leased truck that i'm turning in and this one i'm buying leasing prices are getting crazy they use to be cheaper but not anymore well good luck and the single or dual wheel thing isn't much more then a weight rating dual wheel trucks are 1 ton or a f 350 or a 3500depending on ford,dodge or chevy we just had a blowout on our Oct 08 trip from NJ to the Fort while in Va just made some thumping noise but we have a good weight dist.and sway bars system so was no problem other then changing the tire on I 95
     

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