After reading another post where someone took the time to post a good review of their 2018 26 DBH, I decided it was overdue for me to do the same for our 274 DBH, now that we are on our third camping season. The Cherokee Wolf 274 DBH is the less-common twin of the Grey Wolf 26DBH. I think the primary difference between the two models is that the 274 has higher ground clearance, a slide out that is flush with the main floor, and there is an extra window on the side of the slide out, and the other slide-out windows *might* be larger(?). This also translates to slightly higher weight. Otherwise, they are identical.
In summary, the trailer has been great for our family of four (the kids are now 9 and 5). Now in our third camping season and averaging around 20-25 nights/season, we still feel it was a great choice. No buyer's remorse. We came from a pop up to this, and initially debated buying the smaller version without the sofa, thinking we didn’t need it. But we didn’t want to regret it later, and are so glad we made that decision. The extra seating space is wonderful! As for the rest of it – full-size bunks are great. Living space and slide out is awesome. Kitchen area and large pantry are highly functional with a lot of storage, and the bathroom is very adequate in size. We never wanted an outdoor kitchen, and find the self-storing cook stove (which we loved on the pop up) and outdoor mini fridge to be an excellent combination. That extra fridge offers valuable extra space and keeps us from hauling an extra beverage cooler and ice. It was one of the minor, small features that actually sold us on the camper.
Before I get into what we have done on the camper, let me say this: We never thought we were buying a high-end RV, and know that these things are built “cheap.” That said, extensive reading of this site helped us scrutinize the daylights out of the camper during our PDI (we had several minor items fixed that that time), ask many questions, and helped us ward off future problems by being proactive about maintenance and keeping a watchful eye on others. We can’t do “all the things, all the time,” but try to prioritize and stay ahead of repairs as much as possible, and hope for some good luck. RVs of all types are nothing if not maintenance, maintenance, and more maintenance. But hopefully you camp enough to make it worth it, and we’ve made a lot of great memories thus far.
Repairs via Dealer:
We took it back to the dealership after season one to replace the awning that was showing signs of failure (stretched seams at corners) despite having never been in high wind. We also had some minor wiring connections fixed, had new skids put on the bottom of our slide out (apparently a known issue due to it scraping the floor), and had them secure some interior trim where staples were popping out. DH had to reconnect some shoddy wiring from the TV to roof antenna - now it works great. Fingers crossed we continue to stay problem free for a while.
Updates and mods:
-Oxygenics shower head - because using the pump and fresh-water tank equated to a drizzle.
-Added blinds from the manufacturer to the bunk windows (why it comes without, I don’t know)
-New Goodyear tires - we didn't want to experiment with CastleRock
-New shower curtain (though still on the original track)
-Faux "tile" to the sink in the bathroom
-Ordered a matching cabinet door from our dealer and cut an access panel in the bedroom under the cabinet for MUCH easier winterizing (props to the person on here who posted that mod!)
-Added a winterizing bypass valve
-DH has gradually been adding Eternabond to areas on the roof for insurance
-Added a Fantastic Fan vent cover
-Replaced the crappy factory outdoor speakers
-Added cheap, one-inch pieces of egg-crate foam under the kids’ thin bunk mattresses
-Our own mattress was rock-hard, but we discovered that a 1" piece of firm latex foam (via Amazon), layered on top with 4" of inexpensive memory foam (also via Amazon) had turned the bed into something amazing and totally worth the extra $$
-We've been looking into surge protectors and EMS...still researching and considering.
-We notice the interior fridge struggles and the fins freeze over in high temps despite a battery powered fan, but I think it's the nature of the beast. We could hard-wire a fan that would work better, but haven’t gotten to that point yet.
-DH wants to remove the spare tire and mount it under the frame - he has always been suspect of the extra weight on the flimsy storage rack, and the stories about poor welds have him concerned.
-More Eternabond on seams. We’re fans, and of the mindset that the roof warranty was never worth much to begin with, so we’d rather be proactive and keep leaks out.
We tow our 274 DBH with a 2013 Toyota Tundra 4WD, locked out of 5th gear when going through hills. Crunched a lot of numbers, went to CAT scales, etc. We’re pushing the official numbers, but the set up works well for us and feels secure. We aren't towing through mountains though. We use an Equalizer WDH and Tekonsha P2. DH did a lot of reading and spent a lot of time to get the Equalizer dialed in correctly. He noticed a big difference in towing comfort after doing so. Even in cross winds, the trailer has pulled steady with this setup.
-X-chocks - They do seem to help stabilize the camper, but not a huge difference. We have tried it with and without. DH says he notices less movement when the kids are running through it. We own them, so might as well use them. But they aren't an absolute necessity in our book.
-Lego blocks - We use when needed for extra height, but often just use our --Anderson levelers (see below).
-Anderson camper levelers - we really like these and they make leveling on hard surfaces very easy, but in sandy areas (think shoreline dunes), they will sink. For that, plain wood boards are also a necessity.
-90-degree elbow and water-pressure regulator - We use both. The latter is a very basic brass version, but we figure it's insurance at full hook-up sites. We typically camp Michigan state parks, which don't have water hook ups.
-Rhino sewer hoses – They get the job done, and we’d rather not cheap out on sewer hoses.
-Clear sewer elbow - We like this to get a sense of what is or isn't coming out of the black tank. And on that note, I will join the masses who like using Calgon water softener in the black tank. However, we can't do full-on GEO method because of needing to minimize water usage. Detergent wasn’t cutting the smell, so we started using Happy Camper – mixed feelings on that. Now we are experimenting with Calgon and RV Digest-It pods.