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Old 01-27-2015, 07:17 AM   #1
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Questions about buying a used Sunseeker

I am close to completing my 2nd year with a camper, have already traded once and now am contemplating a Class C. Is there no end to this disease?

I do not want to buy a brand new class C, well I do but my funds say otherwise. I am considering a used coach, maybe up to 5 to 7 years old. But I am concerned that if I buy an older coach that I will run into problems with the appliances, water heater, generator, etc. So I am looking for some input from the experienced people here on how well the coaches hold up? I am sure some maintenance/repairs could come up but can I expect most things to still be in good shape assuming the prior owner took care of it?

On a side note, how well do these things handle the big mountains out west, like the Rockies? How well do they tow a toad like a Honda CRV?

Thanks.
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Old 01-27-2015, 07:56 AM   #2
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I can't answer many of your questions since I've always bought new, and about every 4 years.
I can answer about towing a cr-v. We have a 2013 Sunseeker 3170 with the v-10, that we pull a 2001 Honda CR-V with. We live in Pa. And have pulled it up to Canada and down to South Carolina with no problems. We have the Blue Ox bars with the Patriot brake system. I barely know it's behind us half the time.
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Old 01-27-2015, 08:20 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian217 View Post
I can't answer many of your questions since I've always bought new, and about every 4 years.
Thanks for the response. Can you tell me how yours do after the 4 years? Are they still in good running order when you trade them?
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Old 01-27-2015, 08:26 AM   #4
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The Sunseeker is our first motorhome. All others were travel trailers. As far as holding up, they were all in great shape when we sold them. Roofs never had any problems. Just basic maintenance type things to do.
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Old 01-27-2015, 09:14 AM   #5
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We have bought 2 used class c mh first one was a 1998 jayco bought in spring of 2009 bought it cheep to see if we enjoyed the life style the only things I fixed or updated was a new fuel pump for the generator, steering stabilizer, tires and microwave. We still have this unit and our kids use it 10 -12 times a year. our second one is a 2011 3170 we bought used in spring of 2013 and have had some slide issues but nothing to bad. The best thing I can tell you is just search and search and you can find a good used unit at a reasonable cost. We love our sunseeker and are planning to buy used again if we move up to a class a in the future.
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Old 01-27-2015, 09:47 AM   #6
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I do have to say, in my experience in looking at craigslist and driving 2 hours to look at a Sunseeker that was 2 years old, just watch pricing carefully. Many of the ones I saw listed on Craigslist that were a couple years old were asking more than I paid for a new one. That tells me these people didn't do their homework and probably paid way too much. Mark up is high in new motorhomes. Also, we take very good care of our toys. Many don't. The one I went to look at 2 hours away had 30,000 miles on it and was beat up! For a little more than what he was asking, once again we got a new one. I'm not saying don't buy used, but I did find it hard to try to get people to come down on their prices when I told them I could get a new one cheaper. Most didn't believe me.
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Old 01-27-2015, 09:56 AM   #7
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I've bought three used Class C motorhomes. Given the nature of the disease, you probably won't have them very long. If you buy new, you'll take a beating when you trade. You'll take a beating if you trade a used MH, but it will hurt less. FWIW, here's my two cents:

1. Allow a couple of grand to repair things that will probably not work. It's still less than the depreciation on a new one. Double that amount if you can't do your own basic plumbing, electrical, and carpentry repairs.

2. Buy something with moderate mileage - 3 to 4 k a year. Too little can be as bad as too much.

3. Weigh it before you buy it. Lots of MH are nearly overweight as they leave the factory. You don't want to have to load it like an airplane.

4. Spend the $$ for a CARFAX report. It won't tell you the whole story, but it will help. (I drove 500 miles to look at one that was in "mint" condition with an excellent CARFAX report showing steady maintenance and no accidents. The report, however, didn't tell me it smelled like cat pee.)

5. Do your research on price. Check e-Bay, RVT and RVtrader. Forget NADA - decent for cars but totally worthless for RVs. Even used RVs have inflated asking prices of +%15 and higher.

6. Do a thorough PDI or take someone who can. Check for water damage. Then check closely again.

The first one I bought was a total disaster (overweight, water damaged, fridge that worked fine until the temp was above 75, etc)(Winnebago Vista on a VW chassis). The second was beautiful and pretty sound, but overweight as it rolled out of the factory. (Coach House 272XL). I had mistakenly assumed that an E450 chassis would be fine, but the rear axle was several hundred lbs over the GVWR with nothing in it.) The one I have now is a relatively recent purchase (Lexington 235). So far so good, but I expect to have to put a couple of grand into it.

7. Check the tires. They're probably too old or cheap China bombs.

Good Luck.


Edit: I've frittted away so much money going back and for the between Motorhomes and Travel Trailers that I decided it was cheaper in the long run to keep both. (21FBRS and Lexington 235). Just a thought.
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Old 01-27-2015, 11:48 AM   #8
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We purchased a 2008 3100SS this past August, had been looking for a couple of months and did a lot of research on line. Purchased the unit privately at what I thought was a good price. Insisted that the owner did full certification on the unit before purchase including mechanical , gas and water, saved me about $1000 of work that the seller had to cover. Found some minor issues through the fall that I spend another $100-200 on but nothing serious. Was at the Toronto RV Show 2 weeks ago and one of the dealers had the same year and model listed for $8,000 more than I paid. I guess the lesson learnt was shop around, do your homework on the unit you want and be aware of pricing out in the market place. Privately you can get a good price, protect yourself with an offer to purchase in writing, that spells out specific requires from the buyer, once the offer is signed he is responsible to live up to the terms agreed. Unfortunately a "gentlemen's hand shake" won't cut it.

Good luck
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Old 01-27-2015, 12:15 PM   #9
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Does anyone have an opinion about which Forest River C class to buy? Sunseeker vrs Forester? We are looking at new.
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Old 01-27-2015, 07:06 PM   #10
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I have a Forester and I LOVE it. I am in my second year of spending the winter in warm(er) weather!
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