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Old 09-23-2012, 08:55 PM   #1
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390BH owners

I read some older threads on here about some comments on their 390 but I didn't want to bump a 1yr old thread so I thought I'd start a new one.

Wife and I are working on our plan to take a year or two off to go out on the road with the kids (13 and 9yr old) so of course we are looking at bunk house models.

We've narrowed it down to 3, the Jayco Seneca, Palazao 33.1 and the 390. We also saw the tag axle BH one, Charleston but that seems like way too much.

So I was hoping to hear from the 390 owners on what they like and don't like about their unit. I did read a bunch on the doors to the bunks being an issue?

Looking forward to hearing your experience.
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Old 09-23-2012, 11:08 PM   #2
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Feedback on 390 BH

We too have two young kids. After severl years in a traillite bantam, we purchased our first class A. It was a 34ft Triple E Gas with one slide. After sever years, we moved up to a 37ft Flletwood Discovery DSL. with two slides. The added space, increased power and added stability was a big plus.

Last year we purchased our first new MH ... 390BH-60. The additional space due to the 4 slides is unbelievable, added basement storage due to raised rail design ... and best of all ... we now have proper living space due to the fact that each of the kids have their own bunk. This was really the only reason that we looked to replace the Discovery.

Pros of 390BH-60
Bunks for Kids ... Living room is used as a Living room
Lots of storage ... especially basement
Drives well with lots of power .. we tow a Ford Flex
Large Fridge that works very well even on very hot weather
Tile floor very easy to clean ... although very cold on feet .. we have a throw rug
Large, quiet genset
Good Milage ... we avg 11mpg Alberta-california towing car
Very well laid out utility cabinet with indivitual water shut off
Washer/Dryer ... very handy with kids although it takes a long time
Very comfortable to drive ... with great dash layout
Doors over bunk area ... close off to hide the mess
Very affordable compaired to competition

Cons
Workmanship of cabinets is not early as good as Fleetwood or Tiffan ... MDF faceframes
Cabinet layout/size is poor ... very little thought was put into planning cabinets ... too small for dishes and odd layout
Very little entry/exit room from back side of master bed
Forest River Dealerships have been bery poor to deal with thus far
At least two slided must be open to facilitate loading and onloading
DEF fill spot is near impossible to access without funnel of some type
Cooling and heating is poor compared to past units
Four slides take up much of your camp space and awning is nest to useless since it can not be tilted

All in all it is a fantastic unit for the price ... some better units out there for an additional 100K
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Old 09-24-2012, 12:47 AM   #3
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I echo the sentiments of Lefaivre. Fuel economy must be an industry best. We love the washer/dryer, 8k generator, four slides, bunks with tvs, porcelain toilet, large fridge w/ ice maker, excellent storage, and towing capability. This is also my third unit and I like this the best.
I don't have as much food storage(pantry) space as in previous units. I also wish the main awning was attached to the kitchen slide because, as it is now, with the slide out, it doesn't provide much cover.
I would also guess that the depreciation curve on this motorhome would be more favorable because of the lower cost.
This motorhome possesses all of the "wow factor" of the high end units and satisfies my sensible side as well. After a year, I still think I made a good choice.
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Old 09-24-2012, 07:30 AM   #4
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We have a 2011 Berkshire 390bh. Our experience has been very positive with the rig. We traded an Itasca 35j which is a gas bunk model. The transition between a gasser and a diesel has been a very welcome change. When we started our search we narrowed our choices down to the Damon Astoria (now called Thor Astoria), the Tiffin Allegro RED, and the Berkshire. The Damon was pretty chintzy so that fell off the list pretty quickly. The Tiffin was a possibility until we really dug into it and saw the massive quality control issues that seem to permeate the brand. Things like cracked roofs, rotting wet bays, slides malfunctioning, and the list goes on. Tiffin owners like to tell you that Bob Tiffin takes care of them, which is true.....if you have the time or the inclination to truck off to Red Bay, Alabama, for months at a time. So the Tiffin fell off the list also.

Our experience with our rig has been all positive. The dealer, RVOne through their Buffalo RV location has been great to deal with and has made every effort to solve any problems that have arisen. In our case we have the curtains on the bunks which works out very well. One of the negatives on the Tiffin was the doors on the bunks which was a change that Forest River also incorporated.

If you were to ask what I would change about our unit, I would have to start with the carrying capacity. The unit is very close to it's maximum carrying capacity when it comes from the factory. That is probably the biggest negative. Second for us would be that the two A/C units are too light to handle extreme heat and humidity. Right after we purchased our unit we went to Branson, MO, and it was 100+ and the A/C's struggled with that heat. The last thing I would change would be to go with the aluminum wheels rather than the inserts. The inserts can squeak which is a really huge annoyance and even a little bit embarrassing when you are pulling into a campground in this very nice rig and it is squeaking like a stuck pig.

We also looked at the Charleston when we were at the Forest River plant in Elkhart. It is a very nice tag axle model, but again I would be concerned about the A/C units. It has two 15k units and a rig that size should really have three A/C units.

Ed
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Old 09-24-2012, 07:56 PM   #5
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We just purchased a 2013 390BH with the 360hp engine about a month ago. Just turned 4300 miles on the odometer since purchase.

We traded up from a 36' bunk house Class A Gas for the diesel. We looked at several different bunk and non bunk models and bang for the buck you can not pass up the Berkshire. We have three children all under the age of 8 and there is plenty of room with the four slides.

Our model year came standard with the doors on the bunks along with the curtains. The doors were removed about after the second trip. A good idea but I supposed geared more for two people wanting to use the area for a closet.

You get slightly more carrying capacity if you purchase the 360HP engine. Don't let the extra MSRP sticker price scare you from it as I was able to purchase for the same price as the 340HP. You will also get a 10K hitch and alum wheels.

Tile floors, Corian counters, outside entertainment center, 10+ miles per gallon - go for it!
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Old 09-26-2012, 12:02 AM   #6
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I would agree with EMJ50. Carry capacity with the 390BH-60 has not been an issue. Shop around ... deals are out there ,but beware. Forest River dealersare a pain in the @$$ when it comes to servicing units that they did not sell. So far, that is my biggest complaint

390BH-60 2012
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Old 09-29-2012, 09:07 PM   #7
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Thanks all for the comments! I was just in St Louis and had an opportunity to see the 390BH but I was able to get an earlier flight home so didn't get a chance too

What do you mean by these two?
Quote:
lefaivre: At least two slided must be open to facilitate loading and onloading
DEF fill spot is near impossible to access without funnel of some type
It's really a shame that the FR dealership doesn't help out. You'd think dealerships would. I know I've called them about my B-3 and they were more then helpful in the question I had.

Hopefully they'll have some at the show this January in Denver.
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Old 10-01-2012, 08:19 AM   #8
2011 Berkshire 390bh
 
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The difficulty with the DEF fill is pretty much universal with all the Freightliner Chassis and even some of the Spartans. At the Hershey Show we looked at the DEF fills on many of the rigs and almost all of them had the difficult to reach fill areas.
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Old 10-01-2012, 08:25 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wnytaxman View Post
The difficulty with the DEF fill is pretty much universal with all the Freightliner Chassis and even some of the Spartans. At the Hershey Show we looked at the DEF fills on many of the rigs and almost all of them had the difficult to reach fill areas.

We own two commercial truck repair facilities and the DEF tank is required to be close to the exhaust system. Most if not all exhaust systems are on the right side of the coach. It is more a chassis issue requirement. With this being said the coach manufactures could make it easier to install the fluid.
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Old 10-01-2012, 09:29 AM   #10
2011 Berkshire 390bh
 
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Earl,

At Hershey we only saw one rig that I remember that had the DEF door open to the back rather than to the top. Most of the units at Hershey would have required a goose neck funnel to fill the DEF tank. I'm not sure if the manufacturers have gotten the word yet about the DEF tank, but hopefully the doors will change soon.

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