Searching for a Good, Used 5th Wheel on a Frugal Budget

While I was waiting on my embroidery/sewing machine to be serviced Monday in Springfield, I ran over to an RV dealer that has been calling us incessantly for the last 3 weeks. They have a good reputation nationwide. It was a valuable learning experience because it confirmed that we're going to get more bang for our buck buying privately.

The ones I was shown yesterday were either too small or had major problems developing - which the salesman was surprised I spotted. The very first one he showed me had a major de-lamination problem. Nope, sorry, not for us.

It pays to research. Learn about what to look for when shopping for used RV's BEFORE you go shopping.

I've added a few sites with information on what to look for here. Do a search in Google or Bing and you'll find many more sites.

RV - Buying used
Checklist for buying the perfect used travel trailer
Buying a Used RV

We're hoping to find a gem that's 32' to 34' long with a minimum of 2 slide-outs (one in the bedroom allowing for a bigger bed and more storage). Also, need something that's more of a high profile (taller height) because Mike is 6' 8" and the shorter height RV's just aren't going to cut it. We also want a kitchen that has decent amount of cupboards and counter space. So many RV's have such small counters that if you set 4 coffee cups on the counter, it's all used up.

In our price range we know we'll have to make compromises. But....we have seen some bank repos that were newer in our price range so I think it's just going to be a matter of being in the right place at the right time to get that great deal!

Another problem we think we've solved.....With Mike being so tall, we've been concerned about the length of the bed in 5th wheels even with a slide-out in the bedroom. Unless we luck out and find one with a king-size bed (which isn't likely), we'll end up wit probably end up with the more common RV Queen bed - 60" wide x 72" or 74" long. A residential Queen-size bed measures 60" wide x 80" long. The shorter length would not be good cause I would end up not having much of the mattress to sleep on with him having to spread his length to my side. But after kicking around some ideas we came up with this idea......

Get some upholstery foam the same height as the mattress and how ever many inches wide you need it - looks like we'd need 6" to 8". (You can glue 2 layers of foam together if needed to get the correct height.) Cover it with some fabric (I can handle that). Slide the head of the mattress down and slip in the covered foam before adding the mattress pad and bedding. Because it's under the pillow area, it shouldn't cause any problems and he will have the extra length he needs.

When it's time to bring in the slide-out that the bed is in, just pop up that foam piece and push the mattress back up against the wall and head of the bed platform so it won't damage anything because it's too long. Next time you bring out the slide-out, just pop the foam back in place. Good, frugal solution, don't you think?

Tomorrow we plan to drive up to Kansas City to the Mid-America RV show. No, we we're not going to buy a new RV but it will give us a feel for the various brands. Plus, there's lots of other related vendors at these things. Should be a great learning experience! (And it will give us a much needed break from this mess.)

Til next time,

Gloria - The Internet GADabout


Post a Comment