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Old 09-16-2010, 01:23 PM   #1
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RV Show ???'s. Need advice on purchasing please.

My husband and I are so anxious to get our first travel trailer. I have RV'ed my whole life with my family and am excited to start the tradition with OUR family! However, we are not finding the search as simple as we initially thought!

We've been looking for a couple months I have done a TON of research on construction, TV's, price, etc, etc, etc and we narrowed it down to 2 or 3 that we liked. Our frontrunner was the Surveyor sv264. So I found one on the internet about 90 miles away. It was a 2009 repo unit. The salesperson assured me that it is in PERFECT, like new condition- the oven still has the stickers on it, because it had never even been used. The pictures looked terrific, I worked with the salesman on price and got him down to 15K for this practically new unit. We even went and picked up the Equlizer hitch and Teknosha P2 brake controller before we went- so we could bring that puppy home if the stars aligned. We get down there, excited as all get out- and I see it from about 40 feet away... A small delamination bubble on the front left! My husband says, "maybe it's not that big of a deal it's tiny" (about diameter of a golf ball). Mind you, I have been the one researching like mad on the Internet and I immediately said no way, no how! Where there is smoke there is fire, right??

That being said, we have decided to go with a brand new unit. We know there will be issues but at least we have the (false sense of) security which a mfg. warranty provides- not to mention we KNOW ALL of it's history! So herein lies my question: the CA RV Show is a month away, should we wait and purchase at the show? It is only about 20 miles from our house, and all of the brands we are considering plus many more we haven't been able to see in person yet will be on display. Are the show "deals" really deals? Can you negotiate an even better price when you are at the show than the price that they are initially offering as "special show price?" Are the manufacturers displaying or is it the local dealers who display? Do you order at the show then wait a few weeks for your unit or do you literally pick out a coach and take it home?

Thanks for any and all advice.

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Old 09-16-2010, 02:52 PM   #2
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If you have enough patience, I would wait. Go to the show. Look at as many trailers that you can. Take notes. Go home, go over your notes, pick out the one you feel is right for you and then go negotiate a deal.

I have been looking at trailers by Prime Time, a new FR division. Here's a link in case you are interested.

Prime Time Manufacturing, Manufacturers of travel trailers and fifth wheels

Good Luck!


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Old 09-16-2010, 04:14 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by grhodes50 View Post
If you have enough patience, I would wait. Go to the show. Look at as many trailers that you can. Take notes. Go home, go over your notes, pick out the one you feel is right for you and then go negotiate a deal.

I have been looking at trailers by Prime Time, a new FR division. Here's a link in case you are interested.

Prime Time Manufacturing, Manufacturers of travel trailers and fifth wheels

Good Luck!
I agree , take your time, and the right one will fall in your Lap. We picked up a used 2007 Sandpiper 5er, and the selling point for us was the King size bed, First one we have ever seen, plus the colors the wife loved

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Old 09-16-2010, 04:47 PM   #4
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We have bought all three of our trailers by finding them at an RV Show. We actually didn't buy them at the show but after seeing them on exhibit. We were able to match the sales price even after the show on two of them. With our latest Wildcat, I was able to order the unit a little cheaper than what the show had after a little haggling.

Good luck with your purchase.

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Old 09-16-2010, 06:46 PM   #5
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This is a picture of the 5th wheel we ended up getting. This is while it was at the RV show in Houston. We did okay on it, but think we could have done better. At any rate, we looked at many, even before the show. That gave us a very good idea of what we wanted. This is the trailer we ended up getting also. We had to wait for them to return it to the dealer. And the manufacturer also just happened to have a rep at the show, so it was a bonus for us. Overall a good experience.

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Old 09-16-2010, 09:29 PM   #6
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We went to 3 shows this past spring and saw the V-Lite at the second one. At that time we did some number crunching with the company we eventually bought from but went away. A month later went to another show and the dealer was their with the trailer again but we got to talk to a Forest River factory rep and again left without buying. A month later I gave them a call and ordered over the phone and got almost 8k more off the price from the show. Delaers around here are taking anywhere from 15 to 20k off and on some models even more right now to get rid of this years stock so I would consider that as well.

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Old 09-16-2010, 11:07 PM   #7
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Just a note if you do buy a camper at a show and its the one you will be getting tell them to close it off so people are not still walking through it and possible doing something to it
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Old 09-17-2010, 06:30 AM   #8
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Jewels, every reply has been excellent advice. The shows set you up for an auction-like mentality, meaning "gotta do it NOW!", "gonna miss my chance!" sort of thing. You are approaching your purchase systematically. Stick with the plan. I feel you will get a deal even after the show. Anxious to hear what you guys decide.
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Old 09-17-2010, 10:11 AM   #9
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One other thing to consider, especially if you are not in a big hurry. After you make your decision re make/model/options, etc; you can often negotiate the best deal by purchasing through a factory order. This is because the dealer knows he has a guaranteed sale as soon as the unit is received from the factory and is immediately off his lot to the purchaser. This way you can specify exactly the options, color schemes etc that you want.

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Old 09-17-2010, 11:22 PM   #10
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Well, I'm going out to Hershey later today to see what kind of lies they tell me. Bought my last toyhauler out there, and had such a horrible experience, swore we'd never do it again. You are in a very good position as you don't have to worry about a trade in or selling your own unit privately. I had talked to a local dealer before we went to the show, and he told me they would match any deal I got at the show. Asked him why they weren't going, and he explained that the mfgs. pick the dealers they want to represent them, not just anyone can show up. Sort of flys in the face of them preaching the "buy from your local dealer" mubo jumbo, cause the dealer I endeed up buying from was out of another state! The other issue is the delivery- most of those dealers aren't going to be at their dealership to do your PDI. Ours was done in a hotel parking lot, and the guy doing it knew less about the rig than I did. I definetly recommend going to the shows to check the different campers out, you can find many new things you will either have to have or have no use for. Get info on the best deal you can, then compare that locally and also to the Rv wholesalers you can find on the net.

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