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Old 08-22-2018, 08:54 AM   #1
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Hi all -

I have a family of 6, with a new child and this makes it very difficult to keep our 5th wheel bunk house (separate room in the back) which we love. Simple fact is, we do not fit in my 2500 Dodge, along with our 2 dogs. So I have now turned my eyes to a Class A as my kids really want a "driving RV."

I love the overhead bunk, and since I own and love my diesel truck, I was super surprised to check out the Legacy 38C at last years RV show. It has everything we want, bunk house, 2 bathrooms, and overhead bunk. I do wish it had a King bed option but it is not a deal breaker. The Rig also has decent kitchen space and is not too cramped with the slides pulled in.

However, after reading this forum and visiting a few dealers, I am a little confused. We can afford a Thor Aria 4000 which is about one or two levels above the Legacy and actually has an overhead bunk. The cost after negotiating is about $210,000 versus the Legacy which is anywhere from $155K-$171K. It also looks like the 2019 Berk Class A Diesel pushers with the front door entry are going to be offering the overhead bunk.

As the floor plan seems to be very important for us, I started thinking about getting a gasser. To that end, we have looked at the Tiffin Allegro UA and the Thor Miramar 37.1. The Miramar has basically the same floor plan as the Thor Aria 4000 and is about $136,516. The Tiffin is a fantastic coach as well, but the overhead bunk feels a little sketchy for little ones as it is completely manual, without any netting. I would have to add some safeguards but the overall quality of the Tiffin has me wondering.

So after comparing the Tiffin and the Thor which are about $130K versus the Thor Aria at $210K I really started thinking about how we camp. We live in CA and really do not do any mountain camping and we are not going to live in our RV. Nevertheless we want to keep this coach indefinitely and I do not want to be constrained by a gas motor, especially if we decide to haul.

So this brought me back to the Legacy. What made you folks go for the entry level diesel over the high end gasser? Is the Legacy worth the $40K or more over the Thor Miramar 37.1. Fleetwood Bounder 36F or the Tiffin Allegro UA? Moreover, if the overhead bunk is a very attractive feature would you recommend waiting for the Berk or sitting on the Aria 4000 at its price point of about $40K over the Legacy 38C?

Please help!! Thank you in advance
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Old 08-23-2018, 08:11 AM   #2
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Well, no help on your quest for answers. You are posting to the FR Georgetown site, perhaps you should redirect your question to the Berkshire forum on this site. As for the Tiffin versus Thor, I did look at those and went with what we have (Georgetown 378XL) which wouldn’t come close to the floor plan your looking for. Good luck in your quest.
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Old 08-23-2018, 08:41 AM   #3
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the question of Legacy vs Georgetown, or similar Palazzo vs Challenger is one of whether you want gas or diesel, there can be pros and cons to both.

I would suggest that if you are simply taking vacations and camping infrequently, the money for the diesel versions are probably overkill, since the base layouts can be very similar, no matter the engine type.
If you really want to spend the extra money and have a quieter ride, smoother ride, air bags to deflate when you park, and generally a more robust and 'whole house' Inverter for all the outlets when 'off-grid', then go diesel.
Both the Legacy and Palazzo are 'twins' for the most part. The front overhead electric queen bunk is a great addition to the 'normal' hall bunks, and normal let-out or jack-knife sofa sleeping options(sounds like you'll need them all!), and the single exterior step because of the low-sitting XCS chassis is so nice compared to most coaches with two or three just to get to the door...much better with all those 'chillins!
We find that the diesel platform is best for long journeys and lots of travel - it is very well designed for great fuel economy, with close to 12 versus most gas units at 6 to 8 or so. Just the fuel savings alone can make a huge difference in the overall cost if you travel a lot. If you don't really, then stay with a gas coach.
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Old 08-23-2018, 09:33 AM   #4
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Thank you guys for the replies. Yeah I love the single step entry and low ride feel and with the young kids this seems to be very practical . Didn’t think about that. In regards to the sleeping conditions you are right I will need all of those !
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Old 08-23-2018, 09:46 AM   #5
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Have you considered doing a search for a quality used coach a few years old?

Most MH do not get driven much but the price point may be in the range you are looking for in the floorplan/diesel you like.

If it were me Id look for units within even as far as 1000 miles away in order to get what I really wanted at a price I was willing to afford.

Even the trip to go look at and pick it up could be an adventure for the family.

PS, after towing a 5er with a Ford F250 gasser and a Chevy 2500 Duramax/Allison Id be interested in the Diesel pusher as well if I were in your shoes. We find it simply makes for a much more relaxed experience if you ever get into any hilly country.
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Old 08-23-2018, 11:08 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by DouglasReid View Post
Have you considered doing a search for a quality used coach a few years old?

Most MH do not get driven much but the price point may be in the range you are looking for in the floorplan/diesel you like.

If it were me Id look for units within even as far as 1000 miles away in order to get what I really wanted at a price I was willing to afford.

Even the trip to go look at and pick it up could be an adventure for the family.

PS, after towing a 5er with a Ford F250 gasser and a Chevy 2500 Duramax/Allison Id be interested in the Diesel pusher as well if I were in your shoes. We find it simply makes for a much more relaxed experience if you ever get into any hilly country.


Yeah great points. I am now leaning towards a used second tier Class A diesel but the interesting thing is it seems like manufacturers like Thor Aria 4000 and the new Berkshire’s are moving toward an overhead bunk even with a front door entry. I have not seen any front door entry class A diesels older than 2018 that have an overhead bunk.

Thus, I am trying to find a used palazzo or if that doesn’t work out, a used high end gasser.
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Old 08-23-2018, 11:31 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JJJLaramie View Post
Yeah great points. I am now leaning towards a used second tier Class A diesel but the interesting thing is it seems like manufacturers like Thor Aria 4000 and the new Berkshire’s are moving toward an overhead bunk even with a front door entry. I have not seen any front door entry class A diesels older than 2018 that have an overhead bunk.

Thus, I am trying to find a used palazzo or if that doesn’t work out, a used high end gasser.
I can't help you at all with anything other than my earlier suggestion. We have a 5er and LOVE that but it is just DW and I so we don't need a BH.

We also sometimes tow a 14' flat boat behind the 5er to fish where we camp. I could tow it with a MH but could not launch or recover it without my truck.
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Old 08-23-2018, 07:36 PM   #8
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FWIW...Sounds to me like a gasser will do the job for you and save you a lot of up front costs...AND should be good for a long time on the well proven F53 chassis. I would suggest that if Tiffin makes a floor plan you like...that is the top of the line for a gasser and they provide superb after sale service and support based on how they've treated my good friend who is a 2nd owner. The problem is...you have to go to RedBay AL to get that service for major issues. Dealers are dealers but if you can get there,,,Red Bay will take care of you.
On the Forest River side...seems like the G'Town GT5 36B5 might meet your needs. https://www.mhsrv.com/2019-forest-ri...-a-tx-i2268608
I'm really happy with our Georgetown Gasser decision...but we each have our own needs. Good luck finding your own solution!
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Old 08-23-2018, 10:42 PM   #9
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I'm jealous. I wish I had your dilemma.
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Old 08-24-2018, 08:13 AM   #10
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THOR motor coach asked me to stop by and give them my opinion of a new 'design' they were implementing back in 2016...in Wakarusa... it was the new Venetian with a front let-down queen bunk, with a new seat-belt elevation system. They were also in the midst of considering designing a Venetian bunkhouse, but it seems they've not followed thru on that one yet.

Personally, I always like the idea of having an extra sleeping or storage area above the driver/passenger area - it works great in mid-door coaches, like our Palazzo... but I would hesitate to consider one in a traditional bus-style front door coach.
If the front bed is in the down position, it really makes it difficult and uncomfortable to access the front door. You need to almost get down on your knees, or be a VERY short person, still having to bend over greatly - it would make for some interesting entrances and exits while someone is in the 'bunk'.
Now, maybe the thought is that the front bunk won't be deployed until the coach is locked up for the night and everyone is ready for bed. Great. And, if the new 'seat belt' style elevation system operates easily and quickly, then maybe you can move it out of the way when needed, at least as long as nothing in the bunk would cause any crush issue.

As for using it for storage, it's doubtful since it's not sure if you can travel while it is not in it's highest 'closed' position. Our Palazzo's electric system with 'pin locks' allows us the option of using the closed position, or as we did ourselves, adding some pin holes 10 to 12" lower, so that even when traveling the bunk can serve as either storage if no one using it for sleeping, or someone who uses it nightly can keep their 'stuff' and personal items there without having to move them daily. Our son did this and loved it over the traditional hall bunks, though it has a little 'less' privacy, if that is any concern.

Coachmen Mirada LS models(by Forest River) now have had for several years a 'new' Salon Bunk option, which is a set of bunks, end-to-end, as one long run, which is a similar let-down sleeping area right above the living area table and couch. At night, I suppose you can then let down the Salon Bunks for sleeping, rather than the traditional hall bunks, front bunk, or letting out a couch. The nice thing is that it takes up no additional room for this let down bunk system, totally disappears when retracted, and you could certainly use the option of having it down even WHILE traveling. They, like the front let-down bunks, have the 'safety' webbing for the edges.

just some thoughts and ideas

I believe that now THOR is using this new seat-belt deployment system for front bunks in many of their coaches.
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