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Old 11-18-2012, 11:08 PM   #1
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Need help with options

We are planning to place an order for a 320 rs Columbus fifth wheel. What options do you feel are a must and which could you do without. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. We plan to do some winter camping, but not sure if heated tanks are standard or an option. The options we are considering are second air, leather couch, queen bed, washer dryer and double pain windows. Since this is our first fifth wheel, I am not sure about towing options. Again any advice would be greatly appreciated and I promise to keep you updated and submit pictures.
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Old 11-18-2012, 11:14 PM   #2
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Definitely second a/c. We also have leather couch and queen bed. Wish we had the 6way leveling system. We do not need washer and dryer like that space for storage. We love ours. Congrats
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Old 11-19-2012, 06:30 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Welsh2722
We are planning to place an order for a 320 rs Columbus fifth wheel. What options do you feel are a must and which could you do without. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. We plan to do some winter camping, but not sure if heated tanks are standard or an option. The options we are considering are second air, leather couch, queen bed, washer dryer and double pain windows. Since this is our first fifth wheel, I am not sure about towing options. Again any advice would be greatly appreciated and I promise to keep you updated and submit pictures.
Definitely the second ac. I would get the 6 way or at least the 4 way auto level stabilizers. Makes it a whole lot easier to set up and level the unit. I would also get the JT StrongArm Stabilizers or at least order the camper with the brackets installed and you can put them on yourself. Slide toppers are also nice for keeping debris off the top of the slides.
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Old 11-19-2012, 06:51 AM   #4
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If your planning on doing some winter camping, i would get the tanks heaters and the double pane windows. And from the posts put on by those with 6-way leveling- i would getthat also-- now i wish mine had that, the washer/dryer-- we feel we didnt need it 'cause most campgrounds have laundry facilities and heard that some of these don't work to well anywayand the extra room for storage is nice to have.
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Old 11-19-2012, 07:00 AM   #5
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I would go with 6 point/JT Strong arms! Also the trail air hitch. Only things we would change!!! Love our Columbus!!
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:19 AM   #6
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All Columbus come standard with tank heaters

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Old 11-19-2012, 09:36 AM   #7
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I appreciate everyone's quick reply. It is getting down to the wire. Wife is anxious. Reason for the washer dryer is, we will have the unit at our spot up by the lake. It has a concrete pad and an awning 45'x28'. We are up there every weekend and doing laundry would keep us from lugging clothes back and forth. We have two kids and a large dog so space is getting limited. They are all still growing. I was thinking I would not need slide toppers because of the awning. We plan to take it to the beach a couple times a year and when the kids go off to college, my wife and plan to be on the road more. Right now kids just want to be at the lake with friends. Again, I will let you know what we come up with. Keep the comments coming. The one thing I have learned over the years, learn from people who have been where you are going. Thanks
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:31 AM   #8
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We ordered the 6 point and JT Strongarms works nice also the heat pump and Fantastik fan in kitchen fireplace and dual pane windows, have only camped in the 5th wheel one time so far but no major problem just a few small things that I fixed going to camp for 4 days later this week. You will like your new Columbus a lot.
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Old 11-19-2012, 12:19 PM   #9
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I am always looking for new ideas. I can't find any info on JT strongarm stabilizers. Do they have another name?
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Old 11-19-2012, 12:28 PM   #10
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I found the info on the stabilizers. How many do you put on a six way leveling system? Also, I would never order another camper without dual pane windows.
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Old 11-19-2012, 01:57 PM   #11
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They put 4 on the front and 2 on the rear.
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Old 11-19-2012, 02:03 PM   #12
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Thanks. Almost forgot the fireplace
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Old 11-20-2012, 07:32 AM   #13
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We are in the process of waiting right now on a 385BH we just ordered. In the end I decided to add quite a few options just to make it more enjoyable and a little easier. Here's our list and to the side a quick reasoning on our part for the choice.

Slide Awnings - Keeps all the debris from trees and whatnot off the slide tops
2nd A/C - Will be needed in the dead of summer to keep cool
Trail Aire Suspension - Heard lots of good things about this system
Electric Fireplace - Puts off good heat without burning propane
6 way Auto Level - Seems almost all that have this swear by it now so must be good
Dual Pane Windows - Cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter, sounds good to me
Bedroom TV - Obviously
Kitchen Fantastic Fan - Pull out any smells from cooking fast
Bike Rack - Kids bikes and other misc. stuff
4 Door Fridge - Obviously
Booth Dinette - My wifes preference over the table
Upgraded Mattress - Obviously
Strong Arm Stabilizers - Anything that will help keep the camper from shaking is worth it in my book
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Old 11-20-2012, 07:46 AM   #14
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I believe you DEFINITELY want the six-way levelers. It's great to unhook...push the AUTO LEVEL button and start hooking up water, electric, etc. while it does it's thing. Having camped several times in heavy rains with ours - I recommend the slide-out covers (helps the noise level in rain a great deal).

Your base unit is going to be very "loaded" compared to a lot of fifth wheels - but the six-way and slide-out covers are certainly nice. And of course...unless you're planning to always camp in cool weather...the second AC is a MUST.
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Old 11-20-2012, 08:26 AM   #15
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I would recommend that you beef up the suspension system to handle extra weight put on larger tires and wheels than what comes standard and if possible get different tires than what is usually supplied with the 5th wheel.
another thing to consider is the lock down stabilizers like steadyfast or JT's, then you wont have to use a front stabilizer.
If you are going to do a lot of dry camping you can also look into solar system to keep the batteries up. if you can get that six point leveling system you will like it, sure makes it easy to set up the 5th wheel.
If you want to put bikes or something on the back put in a hitch point for a bike rack. ceiling fans make it more comfortable when it is hot.
if you are going to have sliding mirrored doors on a front closet in the bedroom have them put on quality lock downs instead of the inexpensive plastic clips that they use now in a lot of 5th wheels.
Led lights if you are dry camping a lot. we put in the warm white ones and they put out great light, cost us about 250 to do our entire 5th wheel.
a good brand of tv instead of the off brands they sometimes put in the rigs.
heavy duty steps instead of the less expensive ones and get the one with 4 steps instead of 3, they also make an electric version.
electric awning system you will like that.
we put in extra insulation in the underbelly, but we did it ourselves, didnt think of it before we ordered our rig.
fantastic fan in the bedroom and maybe in the living room area.
we have a water saver shower head in our rig and really like it, puts out great spray and saves on the water.
porcelain toilet easier to clean
electric dump valves on grey and black tanks? I am not sure how much people like these, I have never seem them.
Ok now that I have spend all your money hope you enjoy the 5th wheel, we really enjoy ours.
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Old 11-20-2012, 08:55 AM   #16
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We have a Columbus 320 RS on order with these options: bedroom a/c,electric fireplace, wood plank look floorcovering, bedroom fantastic fan, trailaire ride Tri-Glide pin box, bike rack, 6 way auto level, and w/d. Seriously considered the slider toppers and the Strong Arm Stabilizers. Since Columbus is putting the Strong Arm brackets on as a standard feature we can always add those later if needed. Our salesman discouraged us from ordering the slider toppers, saying that he has seen many units coming in for repair of toppers due to damage from wind and or rain.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:19 PM   #17
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Looks like we are going to add many of your suggestions. I did not know about the stabilizers. They are now on our list. I do have a question about the heat pump. Is this standard or an option and does this mean I will be able to heat the unit including basement with electric instead of gas? If this is true I'll be ecstatic. I thought both tvs are standard. If not do you think I would be better off buying a better brand on my own. Not sure what it comes with. Four days till we order. Thanks for the advice.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:56 PM   #18
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you can check to see what brand of tv they put in the rig, they might not know. the one we got with our Wildcat Sterling last year is just some offbrand never heard of and the picture and sound is not as good as our Visio we had in our old rig. I dont know anything about a heatpump unit but my guess is it must run on electric.
the stabilizers are either JT's strong arm by Lippert I believe or Steadyfast which you would probably have to order directly yourself. both do the same thing. a friend of ours made his own, but he is a welder.
good luck with the order. a lot of smaller things can be added to your rig later by the dealer or yourself like the stabilizers. I highly recommend changing the tires when you get the rig or if they allow it upgrade the rating on the tires and wheels on your order. we have 2 tires have tread seperation this summer in colorado and caused $5000 damage to side of wildcat, not covered by tire company or forest river. tires were Trail Americas, came from the factory, one only had 400 miles on it. we are getting goodyears put on when we get the trailer back from shop.
you are going to love the 6 point leveling system and if you got the fireplace it is great also. have fun in the rig, we really enjoy ours, one of the best rigs we have ever had, this is our 4th fiver.
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Old 11-20-2012, 01:16 PM   #19
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Thanks for your input. I'm writing everything down so I can ask the right questions and save the dealer and myself time
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Old 11-20-2012, 01:52 PM   #20
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As far as TVs go they should all by HiSense brand LED models with a Samsung DVD player. Columbus models ready come with all LED lighting so no worries there. The add on heat pump is just for the main A/C unit so it won't circulate through the basement ducts.
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