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 > 1997 Class C Winnebago, 47,000 miles too old to buy?

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pianotuna

Regina, SK, Canada

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Posted: 05/18/20 12:57pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I loved my 1987. However maintenance costs were $0.25 per mile. I drove it 200,000 miles. It was shared with my brother. In the end I purchased my own RV and he bought me out. The repairs started looping--for example the power steering had to be fixed in year #2, and fixed a second time in year #8.

Parts became an issue for the chassis. The house part was reliable with only the water heater board going out. It had 125,000 miles on it when purchased.

* This post was edited 05/18/20 01:03pm by pianotuna *


Regards, Don
My ride is a 28 foot Class C, 256 watts solar, 556 amp hours of AGM in two battery banks 12 volt batteries, 3000 watt Magnum hybrid inverter, Sola Basic Autoformer, Microair Easy Start.

BFL13

Victoria, BC

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Posted: 05/18/20 01:17pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

No luck finding one part for my 1991 so far. Had two things happen at once of course [emoticon]. Had the big red brake light come on while driving and the anti-lock sign too. Stopping ok, try not to worry too much. Then the parking brake red light would not go out either (except it was not on at all--see the rest--). The little plastic switch that pushes up and down by the parking brake was broken in two for some reason.

Can't get one of those little things anywhere it seems. Glued it so it worked and the red light still stays on! Drat. Lots of brake fluid in the pot up front. Then read in the manual way into it that the pot has to be more than half full--it has to be full near to the top. Who knew?

So filled the pot up from half and red light goes out as it should also the anti-lock read-out. Then the little part came unglued so now no parking brake red light. Rats. So have to keep remembering to release the brake when starting off--no red light to remind me.

But at least the scary red brake light is not on anymore while driving. With my 2003 Chev truck I sometimes get the ABS warning --it comes and goes by itself--got that solved over on the TV forum, but at least the Chev manual says you still have brakes when that comes on. With the 1991 E350 it does not tell you that, so you bite your nails and hope you make it home ok.

Stupid stuff like that could ruin the OP's dream trip across country. Local area, you can get home somehow and get things fixed even if you have to abandon the rig at some garage out of town.

Of course stupid stuff can happen with a new rig too, but less likely. Also on any cross-country trip you need deep pockets and extra time in case things go wrong. With the old RV, you just need deeper pockets I guess!


1. 1991 Oakland 28DB Class C
on Ford E350-460-7.5 Gas EFI
See Profile for House electronics set-up.
2. 1991 Bighorn 9.5ft Truck Camper on 2003 Chev 2500HD 6.0 Gas

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 05/18/20 02:50pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

^If that's your experience, then older vehicles are a challenge. BTW, brake light switches for your van are like $10.99 at any parts store and easy to replace, which I'm sure you're aware of.

Which is why I mentioned that if your are not a shadetree mechanic, at a minimum, expect to pay more and be frustrated.
It's a balance between budget, knowledge, need and convienence. With a **** shoot of whatever might happen.


"Yes Sir, Oct 10 1888, Those poor school children froze to death in their tracks. They did not even find them until Spring. Especially hard hit were the ones who had to trek uphill to school both ways, with no shoes." -Bert A.

ron.dittmer

North-East Illinois

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Posted: 05/19/20 06:26am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

pianotuna wrote:

Ron,

My 2005 has disk brakes. I've replaced the rear brakes 3 times since 2009. I've driven it about 120 miles and I try to avoid using the brakes when ever possible.5
Rear disk brakes became the standard for the E350 a few years after 1997, maybe when the E450 was introduced.

* This post was edited 05/19/20 06:34am by ron.dittmer *


2007 Phoenix Cruiser model 2350, with 2006 Jeep Liberty in-tow


BFL13

Victoria, BC

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Posted: 05/19/20 07:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

^If that's your experience, then older vehicles are a challenge. BTW, brake light switches for your van are like $10.99 at any parts store and easy to replace, which I'm sure you're aware of
--------------
I had no luck finding one for a 1991 E350. They changed it in later years. Ford dealer here doesn't have it on their parts computer anymore, and I couldn't find it on line. I will look some more.

It is not for the brake lights, it is the switch for the parking brake light on the dash, same light that indicates brake failure while driving. It was confusing trying to figure out what was the trouble when it was both at once.

I was able to look at one in somebody's older E350 so I could see how it is supposed to be. My two parts were not obvious how to fit them back together. I have it working again for now (second repair on that), but the glue won't hold long I think. At least now it is only the parking brake indicator and not a "real" brake problem, so no scary red light while driving.

That red brake light comes on while driving and you know you are supposed to get off the road, but then you see the anti-lock light on, so you think it is just that, so you try to brake and it feels ok, but you don't know for how long, and this is not a good time or place to be stuck, and, and,--- if you are close to home it is one thing, but what if on some Interstate half way across the country? Good Sam time for sure, and what does that do to your dream trip when you have to be back to work next week?

How many expensive parts will the local garage sell you when it was only the brake fluid pot not being full to the top and the light comes on when it gets down to half full every two years or so ? Oh well.

DrewE

Vermont

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Posted: 05/19/20 10:17am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ron.dittmer wrote:

Rear disk brakes became the standard for the E350 a few years after 1997, maybe when the E450 was introduced.


The E-SuperDuty, which was renamed to be the E-450 after a few years, came out in the 1998 model year from what I can suss out; certainly not later than that. My 1998 E-SuperDuty based motorhome has four wheel disc brakes (and they are perfectly acceptable at stopping the vehicle). I have no idea if that's when the E-350 got them or not, nor if possibly different variants of the E-350 differed in that respect--say the dually versions having disc brakes while the single-wheel ones still had drums, for example.

(As an aside, it can be a bit irksome to try to look up parts for the E-SuperDuty as many of the parts store computer systems seem not to know about the existence of that model under the name.)





Dusty R

Charlotte Michigan 48813

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Posted: 05/19/20 12:18pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

At one time the E-350 emergency/hand break set the rear wheels break, and the E-450 had a break at the output of transmission that was the emergency/hand break.

bobndot

USA

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Posted: 05/19/20 03:50pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Xavpil wrote:

BFL13 wrote:

Suggest you are a good candidate for renting a Class C.


Renting prices are out of this world, $300/day, and limited to 100 miles/day, unless I am not looking at the right vendors


average Rates: this one was sent to me by a friend in NY which has very high insurance rates reflected into those prices. There are rv dealers in other states that rent, that do not advertise it. You have to place phone calls and ask various dealers.

I would rent a unit in two stages. Do a few weeks on a southern tour then another few weeks on a northern loop with a break in between to break up your out-of-pocket expense.

• Weekend $1395.00 with 500 Free Miles
• Weekly $1945.00 with 1500 Free Miles
• Add extra days for $225.00 which will include 100 free miles per added day
• Any weekend package that exceeds 750 miles, the extra mileage charge will be .75 per mile due to our weekend mileage cap, which is why we can offer weekend rates
• Rental will be Required
• Extra Mileage 36 Cents per Mile

Xavpil

Los angeles

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Posted: 05/20/20 09:07am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

bobndot wrote:

Xavpil wrote:

I don’t plan on keeping it that long actually
I am too young to retire and enjoy the open roads weeks at a time. I just want to go on my dream road trip cross country while I have the luxury of being able to work remotely


I think you will be better off renting a unit for a one time vacation that you can do in a month or two . That way there is no prep and you walk away from it. That freedom might be money well spent.

Consider how long it might take you to get an rv repair appointment to repair a older rig while on the road. With rv sales going thru the roof now, the shops will be overloaded.

I hear you but renting isn’t an option. With the milage it costs $12000/month

BFL13

Victoria, BC

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Posted: 05/20/20 09:29am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Do they something like this in your area, where they "match" you with a private RV owner who rents out his rig?

https://www.rvezy.com/?rvz_campaign=9984........SluDC6QIV94N_BB2xggHmEAEYASAAEgIYL_D_BwE

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