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Old 02-08-2024, 08:08 PM   #1
Join Date: Apr 2023
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No dinette - how do you guys like it?

Hey Gang,

I'm noticing many of Rockwood's travel trailers do not have dedicated dinettes, opting for the theater seating or sofa w/ the little tabletop arm mechanism to sub in for eating surfaces.

Coming from the motorhome side of things, we've always had a dinette. Hard to imagine RV'ing without one, however plenty of you must seeing as many floorpans do not include one.

How are you guys making do? I can't imagine cutting into a steak or something tough on one of those swing arm contraptions. And I'd assume you're sitting on the end of the theater seat if you use a TV Tray or folding table deal?

To DW and I, it seems like a big deal b/c we've always had a dinette; but truthfully is it?
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Old 02-08-2024, 08:28 PM   #2
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Initial reaction I tend toward needing table and chairs or dinette for eating. Our 2013 has a table and chairs instead of a dinette but no theater seats. I have never dealt with theater seats in a camper but it seems they would take up a lot of space and not having regular dining facilities would make having groups in an issue.
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Old 02-08-2024, 09:27 PM   #3
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We've had a TT with a dinette and one with theater seating. Since it's just the two of us, hands down theater seating is our choice.
Our next trailer will have theater seating for sure. A dinette would be welcome if there was enough space.
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Old 02-08-2024, 10:18 PM   #4
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Our last tt had a dinette with no couch/theater seating, which was much worse than having theater seating/couch with no dinette. It would be nice to have both, but we prefer theater seating with a fold up table.
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Old 02-08-2024, 10:21 PM   #5
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I realize that you asked specifically of people who do not have a dinette and how they like/deal with it. That isn't me.
No dinette whould be a deal breaker for me and my wife. For the following reasons:
I personally dislike eating outside. I want a table to sit at - preferably inside. (this is more me than my wife) Inside = no bugs, no wind blowing nasty stuff onto my plate, no lap balancing, etc

We like to play board and card games and a dinette table is the place. The best place - again, no wind blowing things around, no bugs, no ants crawling all over.

Perhaps we are part of a dying breed but we actually write letters and postcards. Again, the dinette table is the natural place.

When using a laptop (for paying bills; checking for the next nights camping spot; choosing routing; planning fuel stops; etc) it is much more comfortable at the table rather than trying to balance the machine on my lap. And I am also often taking notes - again not easy with no table.

All of the above is much easier and more comfortable at an actual table with a real chair (or even booth seat). Thankfully, our current trailer has a dinette AND theater seating.

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Old 02-08-2024, 11:04 PM   #6
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I'll be following this closely to hear opinions. I have a similar curiosity. I just spent 3 weeks in the TT to see how comfortable it would be doing "normal" things like eating, working on the computer, etc. I have a dinette booth and a jacknife sofa under the murphy bed.

I can tell you sitting for prolonged periods of time on the booth seat is uncomfortable. But so would be trying to work from a theater seat or straight back chair. I've seen some dinette to desk conversions that pique my interest.
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Old 02-08-2024, 11:13 PM   #7
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While we have no theater seats we do have a couch and two power recliners that are very comfortable even for me (6'6" 297 lbs) in addition to our dining table and chairs.
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Old 02-09-2024, 01:14 AM   #8
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Why not have both?
This is the unit we have and love it! We have a jackknife couch, but it is now offered with the theatre seating.
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Old 02-09-2024, 06:35 AM   #9
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All good feedback. For Minilites there is only 1 floorplan (2515s) that offers both the dinette and couch, but at a hefty cost to the kitchen area. I’m not including Murphy bed models as DW has no interest in those.

Out of interest I just took a peak at the larger Ultra Lights, and was surprised to find most of those under 30’ were similarly laid out.
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Old 02-09-2024, 06:58 AM   #10
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Had a 1988 Terry with a dinette and no other seating / that was rough but we went to be outside with 4 of us.

Today I can count on one hand the number of times the DW and I have camped an entire trip alone (since 1985). We always have the boys and their spouses and the grandkids. So it is the two of us to 8 people staying in the camper. Often four of us. And....... 2 dogs.

For that reason no dinette or table would be a deal breaker.


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Old 02-09-2024, 07:31 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Jfkmk View Post
It would be nice to have both, but we prefer theater seating with a fold up table.
X2 on this. I can fit a table/chair behind the theater seating. I think my table is roughly 32*x32 but a couple inches smaller would be idea I believe if two people.
Works with my camper but I do have some open area.

I had mine out in the open area for several months and then devised a way to secure it over the the second recliner(single camper). Just one thing less I have to move for tear down and set up. Walking around it was not a problem but then there is only me.

Also, mine is a wooden table(just a standard metal fold up card table chair) so a bit heavy. I actually threw it on the bed for travel rather than behind the recliners. Just easier.

Also with my camper I have a few inches on each side of the recliner assembly. Moving the recliner may give me a little more storage if needed and would probably fit a table. So far what I have stored between the recliner and walls is enough room.

I too was wanting both, was looking at a 22MLS real hard. Happy with my choice.
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Old 02-09-2024, 07:37 AM   #12
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I took my dinette out and put in two recliners. We use folding tables. The dinette was brutal to sit in for long periods.
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Old 02-09-2024, 07:49 AM   #13
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I suppose we are odd. We have had both booths and stand alone tables in our RVs. Rarely used either of them. We use TV trays, usually with a recliners inside, folding chairs outside.
But then again, we use TV trays at home also!
Our dining tables seem to be used more for storage than anything
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Old 02-09-2024, 07:55 AM   #14
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Love it!

We have a RPOD 196. No dinette and don't miss it. We found two folding tables that are easy to store. We pull them out when we want to eat inside or play cards.
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Old 02-09-2024, 07:59 AM   #15
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It's funny, at home we can sit on the couch, use our phones and iPad's, do the bills and eat our meals all the while our dining room table goes unused.

Forward to the camper, when not outside our choice shifts to the stand alone 4 chair dinette, its not huge but sitting on the sofa or theater chairs to do these things just doesn't feel relaxing. When watching a bit of TV at the end of the day, sitting next to Oma, enjoying a nice stiff Rum & "Diet Pepsi" or a glass of Red wine, the theater seats a great.

The table is also a "must have" when we take the granddaughters with us, they like to sit at the table when playing games, eating breakfast in their PJ's or while making their grand plans for the day .

Another plus, we store board games, cards, placemats etc.. in it.

So for us, we couldn't forego the dinette.
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Old 02-09-2024, 08:33 AM   #16
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Well as an old guy that full timed for 5 years I hate dinettes.even though my current rig has one. Most are very uncomfortable for any length of time. We did have table and chairs in our diesel pushers. We spent very little time at the table and when weather good outside ate at the picnic table or outside recliners more often. If inside we ate at the sofa recliner more than not. I didn’t find any problem. But my steak is medium rare and I have a sharp knife
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Old 02-09-2024, 08:44 AM   #17
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For us a top requirement is both. Table and chairs preferred but dinette is ok. Like some other said we use the table for more then eating.

Our 1st TT only had a dinette, no other seating and some how they made that dinette the most uncomfortable I have ever sat in.
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Old 02-09-2024, 08:56 AM   #18
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I was happy to ditch the dinette in our current trailer. Thankfully the Theater seating was a Mandatory Option. A small table is provided to use with the theater seating. Or we can always just sit at the breakfast bar.

I've looked at floor plans that have both but I'm not willing to add 4-5 feet to the trailers length for a dinette I don't really want.
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Old 02-09-2024, 09:05 AM   #19
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I like my U shaped dinette
for when both of us are using laptops etc
good having reasonable room for mouse and external keyboards

REFUSE to use laptop keys and mousy finger pads !

Eating ... I find table is just a tiny bit small for the condiments drinks and a couple of plates... Would hate to try and feed 3 at the table.

Would not go without a table... extends the kitchen prep area.
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Old 02-09-2024, 09:15 AM   #20
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No dinette

We downsized from a 2608bs with the big front kitchen, table and chairs and recliners. Now travel with a 2511s we ditched the narrow table that came with it. Bought a card table and 2 folding chairs which is perfect if we need to eat inside. Donít miss the dinette or the big front kitchen with the table and chairs (the card table is a better size than the table in the bigger trailer).
Itís just the 2 of us and sometimes our chocolate lab.
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