S2 Ep 32, I answer the questions: "What RV Should I Live in" or "Should I live in an RV or a Van:? with this 2nd in a 3 part series that covers the pros and cons of living in an RV, Van, truck camper, Class B , Motorhome, 5th wheel , trailer, skoolie or horse trailer .
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To me a 5th wheel was easy to hitch the reg trailers or tent camper is more of a hassle. Truck campers was easy to deal with no extra licensing, inspections or insurance. Maintenance minimal. No slides for me either. Mine was not top heavy but I did not have a bathroom in it so it fit the bed perfect. Never missed the bathroom just had a flashlight to watch for snakes and a shovel
Not all TT or 5th have problems with getting around with slides in. Another thing to consider is cost of insurance and maintenance with toad vehicle. Now you have 2 engines, 2 insurance, 2 maintenance nightmares.
Excellent review. Making a list of nice to have, and MUST haves was very helpful. My requirements were a full size refrigerator, queen size bed and room to sleep 2 90 pound labs, 1 70 pound golden retriever, and 1 45 pound English springer spaniel (dog space was my #1). Since I had the tow vehicle I did purchase a travel trailer.
I think back to your videos when your class c went tango uniform. How many nights did you spend living next to a garage? Also, I agree that hitching und unhitching can be soooooo harrrrrd. Once you do it several times it's nothing. I propose that before purchasing any RV one do their homework, take their time, determine their needs and find what fits their needs. You mentioned having to pack-up and take your entire RV to get propane. I can take my propane bottle from my travel trailer, put it in the bed of my pickup and off I go. When I get back my sweetie has dinner and a bottle of wine ready. Beats the heck out of lugging an entire house around because of a failure to check propane levels. Hey, there's good and bad for any type of RV. It's all what one is willing to sacrifice and pay for. What I have discovered is that there are too many RV'ers that don't have the sense God gave a goose. Overloading the RV and pull vehicle, old, rotted out tires, bicycles and a ladder bungied to the trailer's ladder, etc. There are too many YouTube videos out there with excellent product reviews, do's and dont's, and are just fun to watch. Weed out the bad, determine who to follow (I have my preferences and quickly unsub those that are too chatty, stupid or just plain boring) and binge watch an entire series, usually a year or so of videos in a weekend. Get educated. I know it hurts but you'll be better off for it by getting the right gear and getting on the road. BTW, I have put my slide out in a WM lot, parked next to the grass at the edge, after getting the manager's permission. It can be done. God save the Republic.
I hope the information you're getting from me and other patrons will be more than adequate for your lifestyle and anybody else's that you can give them I've been wanting to do this since I was 18 I had a truck or van I should say set up the way I wanted it I bought it used I converted it around sink bed hadn't thought of the refrigerator system yet but I was looking at 1 but then I turn around and got married. so much for a grand plan I'm 30 something years later I'm living in an apartment two dogs wife and now an 18-wheeler which is like an RV on Wheels heftier I don't go off road that much
animals like Capone have hip dysplasia problems when they start to get to me about the age of 10 on up and that's why you are having trouble with the phone getting in and out of that RV right now and it's not going to get easier unfortunately they'll pass away before you do you hope sorry to be the bearer of bad news but that's nature taking its course
the mobility for a handicap person in a wheelchair would be they would have to special design anything they want for it to work if you remember the movie Ironside when Raymond Burr was in a wheelchair they converted a bank truck into his workplace and they had to put a lift on the back they had to have special things going on it can be done but they have to take in consideration a big expense of making sure everything is compatible for their lifestyle so I've seen it done and it's not cheap and it's just not feasible for most though you're on oxygen or better have a back-up plan someone you can communicate to the nose your GPS location that's the last thing you want to do is be found dead in an RV in a wheelchair by eating up there or animals because you passed away or your health issues got ahead of you and you couldn't do nothing about it
Very good series Carolyn. One point on truck/camper combos. You can put a boot between the camper and the truck which allows you to move within the vehicle directly to the camper. If done right, you can do it through a sliding glass enclosure for the truck. I had such a setup up years ago. I will concede there may be campers where this can't be done - but then you can pick one where it can.
You did need to crawl through though: it wasn't a walk-through.
I have a travel trailer and I didn't want to spend allot on my first rv I wanted to make sure I liked camping but my next will be a class c that will most likely be when I go full time until then it will be vacation/weekend time at rv parks, I agree with all the pros and cons I will be traveling majority of my time alone with my dogs and I want the ability to hop in the drivers seat and go, and like Carolyn said they may block my front but I would not hesitate to smash the shit out a car blocking me and keep going:)
I have a 40 ft 5th Wheel towed by a Ram 3500 diesel pickup getting 16 to 18 MPG. Has all the comforts of home. Is extremely well built with plenty of insulation to save on energy cost. All the plumbing is protected so that you don't have a chance to freeze the pipes in extreme cold weather. The 5th wheel has tons of storage compartments inside and out. I like being able to drive the truck into town if supplies are needed and not having to break down the camp if I had a different type of rig. Here is the best part, so lets say that my 5th wheel has a full grey or black tank or my fresh water tank is almost empty. I don't have to break down the camp do drive the rig into town to either empty the grey and black tanks or refill the fresh water tank. I have equipped the Ram 3500 pickup with a stainless tank for the grey and black water and I have another stainless tank for the fresh water. So all I do is pump the grey and black water from the 5th wheel and transfer it to the stainless tank in the back of the Ram pickup then I just go into town and empty the bad water and fill the other tank with fresh water. When I get back to the camp I just pump the fresh water into the 5th wheel. The grey and black holding tank in the pickup is 120 gallon capacity and the fresh water tank in the pickup is a 200 gallon capacity. You have to also remember that you are probably going to utilize solar panels to handle some of your electrical needs so make sure you get a rig large enough that will handle your electrical needs. If you want the panels on the roof then you have to estimate what you want to power with your solar. So if you want A/C, or microwave, or TV, or lights, or hair dryer or anything else the you need to add all that usage up which will tell you how many total watts you need which will tell you how many panels you need which will tell you how much roof area you need. Remember earlier I stated that the 5th wheel has a huge amount of storage well that is good because you will be storing all the energy from the solar panels in batteries which will be in one of the storage containers. If you have to small of a rig you will have no place for the batteries. That is one way to go and I have add my two cents... :)
You must have talked to a TON of people to know so many pros and cons of all these types of rigs. Thanks for organizing the info all in one place...3 vids that is!
BTW-During the most recent RV show I attended, a sales person said that all new RVs with slides MUST have a 14-inch walking space to access the entire length of the RV when all slides are in...wonder if it's true.
I've spent the past six months pondering on what type of full time camper I'm going to choose for my rolling estate, which I plan on purchasing this June of 2018. After doing plenty of research and mind boggling homework with my many choices which were between a 5th wheel, trailer, truck camper or RV you've helped me in making my final decision. After watching this video....a class C it is! The selling point was safety! Ias well am a single woman and since I'll mostly be traveling alone with my dog, I as well do not want to leave my vehicle or my escape route (God forbid I ever have the need to). Also, easier handling and driving an RV seems to make much more sense for me as well. You also talked me into passing on the slide outs in an RV, again a safety and inconvenience issue for my travels. Let me sum this all up by saying thank you and until June I can now take an early spring break from my homework....you're the best!
I researched for 5 years before I made a choice and considered exactly the things you've talked about. I've got a 4x4 truck and an 18' travel trailer with no slides! I was scared to death of backing up and hitching and unhitching but of course the fear was worse than the reality. Backing the trailer just took practice and that grew confidence and now no worries! By far the BEST PRO is drop it and go. LOVE that! Packing up, driving and parking a Class C in town to go grocery shopping? That was my deal breaker.
Good information, Carolyn. Thanks again for the insight. One consideration for a handicapped person, especially in a wheelchair, might be to get a used transit bus or schoolie that has a wheelchair lift. I've seen a few videos with such set ups, so it can be done. Just a thought. :)
Also, about slides - there are some RVs with slides where you can move around even with the slide in. It just takes some research while shopping.
My apology, went back and watched it again and evidently I need to pay closer attention. I seem to notice shadows and perimeters too closely. At one time there was a time lapse and the shadow moved some and you glanced up, then the shadow moved because there was a break in recording so my mind immediately though you had an awning and there was something wrong with it. Sorry about that.
I found this line of rv's phoenix cruisers wow r they nice units ! n just the right size . new they r $$$$ but they do offer them in 4x4 also. I also thought of a toy hauler . n convert the toy part in to a master room . you can have a small office sitting area n bed away from your living area. I am leaning to that idea if I can find a used one that's as good on milage n all like mine now. she only has 17000 miles on her and get as good of gas mileage as my spouses truck. I just dont see reasale value in my unit , when I look around there r many with my lay out on the markt so idk . anyway great info ! is worse then picking a candy bar to many to pick from hehehe rv over load. hehe be safe out there n have a ball =}
One big plus for me and a tag along travel trailer is you still have the pickup bed for toys or storage which can be a major benefit. I have a Dually and can easily bring along my ATV, with a hang glider and Kayak on a rack above. If your pickup has a standard camper shell, you now have an additional (approx.) 100 cubic feet of storage space. You loose that with a 5th wheel trailer. Side note, most of the problems I see with towing a trailer is related to people not having enough truck. Just because the dealer says a 1/2 ton will do it, doesn't mean you should.
Truck campers you can go from driver seat to camper,,thru the trucks back window...you can have a window install with sliding back window...also some truck campers you can install an escape roof window...on the steps you can have install those new scissor steps..their a lot better than standard steps...but it’s a good vid...
alot of great info...sharing this series cuz i have alot of friends asking about these things lately..might just be me but you sound in such a hurry to spit everything out,,, slow down a lil please..lol i know you are just trying to get it all out there,,,its a lot of info! good job tho
Over the years, I've had a small class C, 13' travel trailer, 10' cab over camper, 20' travel trailer, and now a 31' 5th wheel. The class C was too much of a hassle to drive into towns, the 13' was too small but easy to tow with just about anything, the cab over camper was way too unstable on a 4WD 1-ton truck, the 20' still was too small for our family and it swayed in strong cross winds. But it was within the towing limit of our 1/2 ton Suburban. The 5th wheel is by far the easiest to tow, stable in cross winds, and way easier to back up than a trailer but you do have to be aware of the height and how the trailer wheels track relative to the truck wheels in a turn. And the truck/5th wheel combo gets almost double the mileage than the Suburban/20' trailer. (gas vs diesel) But your point of ease of transferring from driving to living makes sense. And it made sense to us when the kids were small. BTW, all of these made multiple trips from/to Alaska as that's where we live. Every road trip required driving on the Alaska Hwy and that's where the motorhome convenience really shines. Looking forward to part 3! Good job on the videos.
Thats why I chose to use my 2010 Ford F 150 supercab with leer camper top to travel in I have put a bed in the bk and 200 watts solar on the camper top and just storage for other items a dometic fridge and an inverter to charge my phone and laptop I put a fuse block in to run other devices such as lights and portable razor and other devices but I can almost go anywhere I want 2 I have padded the bed with carpet padding which I got for nothing at a local carpet place and some large carpets I had at home I plan on doing more in time but I dont need much just a place to sleep and cook.......
A another good video and thank you making it. We started with a TT that had no slides & limited space. Then went to single slide with a rear bath. My wife's had back issues so we went to two slides with one being a bedroom which allowed her better access to the bed and more space. Loved that travel trailer. Now we have a fifth wheel with three slides which did require a truck upgraded, but we made the transition over a couple of years. The ride is much better for my wife. The one issue most people have depending upon the length is turning and backing. It also will limit you at some campsites depending upon the length. Both TT & fifth wheels will require special hitches with the TT being the cheapest. TOTAL weight of the trailer should be under 80% of your tow vehicle capacity. So add about 800 - 1,000 lbs for your stuff when determining your trailers tow weight.
thanks for the info! Speaking of mobility - I look at photos of class As and wonder if I would be able to step up into the driver's side door. Wondering if they ever have steps on that side. lotsa used class As out there, maybe that has something to do with it?
I'd like to add a con for class A & Cs. When you engine needs work, your home is in the shop. Where do you go all day or more , if you have it in the shop? With a trailer or truck camper you can disconnect and let the auto folks have your vehicle. You can ask to park your trailer/camper in the lot, which gives you the option to get lunch, work, or take the dog for a walk. If its a two day job you have your home on the lot.
I have class b leisure freedom wide body. Love it. 20 ft dodge 360. Could use tow dolly if needed tow 6000 lbs....I prefer just drive without towing car...easy to park , fits in.
Great info Carolyn. Thumbs up! Have e bike to get places
Good video. I've not driven a fifth wheel trailer before so I can't speak about the ease or difficulty of hookup, but I know that hooking up to our 29' travel trailer can be a hassle by yourself. Sometimes it take 4 or 5 trips back to see if you are lined -up in all directions before lowering the trailer onto the ball. SO we leave it hooked up whenever possible. If we did it more often I'm sure we'd get good at it. :)
I don't know what youtube has done but the commercials prior to viewing channels like yours is horrid. Some of these ads last 5 mins. I find it difficult to wait for upcoming viewing. Thanks. I did love your channel.
You could get a Neighborhood Electric Vehicle, like a GEM, for a tow vehicle, but you would need extra solar panels to charge it while boondocking. I'm just finishing the payments on an 11-year-old Chevy, which is costing me $6000. For about $1000-2000 more I could have bought a brand new GEM.
Carolyn, nice job after looking for over a year and half, I agree with everything you said. I purchased a class B twice and then decided no. I have found it difficult to make my self happy and my husband on this purchase. Although the B Van's in the market are very nice, they are a lot of money not only to purchase , but to maintain. The newer Mercedes Sprinter Van , having diesel fuel we had determined there are states that do not have the fuel required by Mercedes to stay in warranty, and more and more are going that way. So now I am back to your ford truck (Chass)and looking at small C with no slids. Can you tell me how long you can go without dumping your black tank ? Also what is the milage you are having with your Ford. Now that you have been driving the Ford, how do you really like it. Big difference from your Toyota ( we love Toyota and Honda's). As always love your video's. Looking forward to seeing you on the road....
We love our travel trailer with 1 slide. I wish I had 1 in the bedroom. The extra feet gives my dogs more room to play in the evening. We like having the truck to go places. If we can't take the dogs some place, they can be in the trailer with heat or air. We don't have a problem towing it. We can get to the kitchen and bathroom with the slide in. Since both dogs sleep in the bed with us, it's tight in the bed. We extended the bed, which takes away what little floor space was a the end of the bed,. With the right hitch and load balance, they don't sway very much. The mountains can be tough. Hitching it up takes a few minutes but we have it down to a process. It takes longer to unhook the utilities than hitching. When we travel, we just pack a lunch in a cooler. If we were going to upgrade, we would go with an airstream and a bigger truck. If I was a single traveler, I would travel in a Class B because of the size. I guess it depends on how often you use your RV and your style of camping.
Love my trailer lol I don’t care how bad you trash them lol jk
But yeah for me and my family it works great. The biggest benefit we have is once we arrive to our destination it’s awesome to disconnect and go explore more freely with our tow Vehicle. Reconnecting the tow vehicle to the trailer is not bad once you get used to it, it’s easy Pizzy lemon squeezy. I honestly think for people like you that are full-time and are always on the road of course an RV is a lot better choice but for us that use our trailers A handful of times a year, a trailer can be a better option
Great video! You can go to the camper without getting out if you have a slide window on the truck and on the camper and a boot. I have that and it works great for the average person. I am 5’10” 200 lbs and 75 years old and have no problem going thru when needed. There is some advantages on the truck camper also not mentioned, if is a regular truck almost any shop can work on it and some give a good mileage I get 13 mpg on my old F350. I have had 3 campers, a 1969 Galaxie, a 1972 Dreamer, a 1978 Itasca class A, a 1973 Winnebago diesel pusher and I went back to truck camper a 1997 Lance 1030 on a F350 diésel dually I like them all on its time but class A MH are to expensive and requires a lot of space to park. At this stage of my life I think the Truck and camper is more versatile and economical. That’s my but I agree with your video.
Carolyn I hope this is helpful for many years subscribers or people who are on disability who may have some issues with Mobility I am currently out on the road with Parkinson's disease and I've got a 14 foot travel trailer with which is a Jayco if you're tall like I am I wouldn't recommend it do to clear and tissues for your head if your 6-foot for taller but getting in and out of it sometimes I have a little trouble I have leg that goes dead on me but I can manage it it's small comp compact it's got a good size bed in it and you can take your time on setting it up yes it does have disadvantage like Carolyn said of unhooking and hooking and but I have no slide outs to mess with something that would be nice if I could find somebody that does RV videos or Campers or something videos like Bob or somebody does Thurs I'd be more than happy to show some people this is something that many of you may want to consider having their old doorway and I do have to scrunch down to get in it and sometimes turn little bit sideways
That’s great that you want to explain the pro’s and con’s of different types of RV’s to the potential full timers, but I can hear it in the tone of your voice that you’re very bias on anything other than a class C. Hmmm ..... maybe because you have only owned a class C ?
Galard Mills there's a guy that has a video out on YouTube that shows wheelchair lifters and standing lifters, for RV's, for people who are disabled and who can't keep going up and down the steps of RV's. I think if you type in "lifters for RV's for the disabled" in the search engine of YouTube the video will come up or on Google search.
With the kind of camping you like to do you should have done more research into a TC. You can get from the truck to the camper without going outside if you have the right setup. If you can climb a couple of steps to get in to your RV you can get into the cabover bed no problem. They make side rails for unsteady humans and ramps for older pets. You get used to the top heavy feeling when you are driving down the road and you can't beat the off-road capabilities. Been doing it for 40 years - ever since I decided tenting sucked - lol.
On my 2003 5th wheel, I do not have to extend the slide to access anything inside. It all depends on the interior layout of the unit. With an electric slide out, if the motor fails, you simply connect the hand crank and run the slide in or out manually. Hydraulic slides may not allow you to manually operate the slide if the pump fails. As for slide leaks, they have never been an issue for me since I maintain the roof and side seals. My 5th wheel has a single super-slide which extends from near the end of the trailer to near the bedroom step-up. It increases the interior space of the living, dining, and kitchen areas by nearly 36 square feet. Slides are the best way to gain interior space without having to buy a longer trailer. However, slides do add significant weight to any trailer and that should be figured into how much your tow vehicle can pull. TTFN
Good video Carolyn. Convinced me to discard the notion of getting a travel trailer, and opt for the class c instead. Even with the horrible gas mileage, probably the same with a big V8 and pulling a trailer. Am 67, and mobility is a factor (not so much now but later on). Again, good video.
Something I thought about with a 5th wheel or pull trailer is that you have to tag both vehicle and the camper. I don't know how insurance would work on this but, I suspect it would be more and possibly two separate policies. So there is some extra expenses with these types of RVs.
I have car insurance and insurance for the travel trailer. Basically, if you are worried about insurance and registration I humbly submit that your finances are too thin to be on the road. Stuff happens out there and many times it will be cash out of your pocket.
I have no desire to have any slides ever! Just more costs up front plus more high maintenances. Plus not being able to use all my space anytime I chose to without moving sliders out no thank you to sliders for me! Thank you so much for your informative and sharing your opinions from your own experiences too! Be safe and happy.
Carolyn you can climb from truck camper into the truck with a window and boot. When my 3 kids were little we had a truck camper and I left the window open between camper and truck so that I could check on the kids and I could climb in the back with them while Dad was driving, I climbed in back and made lunch while hubby was driving and fed kids and then climbed back up into truck and brought Dad a sandwich. I was a young women then and much thinner, I'm not sure I'd care to climb through a window now, but I have been thinking about how much I really like having a truck and I really don't like pulling a trailer for all the "cons" that you named in this video. The biggest drawback for me with the truck camper is if you do want to leave it at campsite, you have to jack it up off of the truck, and then drive out from under it, then put the bracing equipment under it to stabilize it, and if there is wind blowing the camper is sitting on the braces swaying in wind and you could come back to a toppled camper, that never happened to us but I saw others it happened to.
I had a 26FT travel trailer in 1985, It was one year old. I was towing it with a 1972 cadillac coupe devllle with a 471.7 Ci v8/gas engine. Plenty of power and stability in the tow vehicle. I had to buy a hitch with a sway bar and add a electric rear brake set-up that would allow me to tap the controller in the car to slow down the trailer, which had brakes on it, with the vehicle and also use this brake by hand to stabilize the trailer when semi's would pass or in turbelent wind conditions while towing. Used it for a couple years traveling the midwest following construction sites. My advice " STAY AWAY" unless you have nerves of steel. I can't imagine traveling in the mountains or on suspect terrain with one of these. Stay away and get a class C. I have had A's, C's and travel trailers. A van or class B would be best. I stand by my advice.
I had a slide camper yeah it's cramped shut but I had access to the whole trailer, but like I said pretty tight. Never have I traveled on the road so not sure if or when I can bc of health, what I will get but have a V8 suv if I decide on travel trailer. Thanks for all this info was big help! Your great 😙
Small trailers can actually be MUCH more difficult to back than a large one. Their shorter wheelbase causes the to react faster and more to any steering on your part.
To back up drive from the bottom of the steering wheel and only use very small corrections
Great content. We are lookin to goin fulltime in the next year or so. This was very helpful in listing the pros n cons of each 1. Like you I have van envy. But my hubby has brought me back to reality. My dad had a camper on his truck when I was young and sleepin in it was always the highlite of the camp out. And he would let me ride in it as he was drivin most times too. It had a big window on the overhead cab where the bed was. So thats where I would stay as we traveled down the road. I know its a big nono now but hey I made it to 44 so there ya go. Lol. I have a fondness for those campers & class C's. The big box on wheels Winnebago. We had 1 of those to travel in when I got a little older. The booth seats always take me back. Lol So when we get whatever rig we decide in I made sure my hubby knew it has to have a booth seat. I know every1 hates them but not me. I wont have anything without one. Thanks for all the great info this week. Im a huge fan of yours & Bob. Because of you 2 we are doin this crazy thing called nomad life fulltime. So a huge thank you & I hope to give u both a huge bear hug once I get to meet you both. Much 💘 🐝Safe & God Bless.😘😜
Interesting series. Looking forward to pt3 as I’m using what I’ve got a full-size passenger van. I have a popup camper I use but it’s overkill when I’m camping solo. Thinking of building a teardrop to pull, something I don’t have to setup like the popup. Being retired I’m trying to work with what I have that suits my camping style. When camping I prefer to be outside enjoying the environment not sitting inside a camper. My main concern is a comfortable secure place to sleep that’s easy to access. Just my style not for everyone. Thanks.....
Thank you Carolyn, excellent job. Most of my experience is in truck campers but I have owned a class C and I will be getting another one. I think all things considered... a class C has the most benefits. I think to sum it up I would say, get the smallest rig you can live with.
Thank You Carolyn!! For giving us tons of info. On different choices that will suit our Nomad Life☺. Im taking notes. Excited to see Video #3 That will Cover Camper Vans / Van life. Many Blessings to You and Capone.💞🐾.