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Old 04-24-2019, 12:32 AM   #1
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Default Newbie in the market

Hey folks,

My name is Alexander, nice to make your acquaintance.

Having recently decided to take the plunge into getting a B class RV, I wanted to get some information about what is available on the market that I should be looking for. Resources for searching build history and production years or variations are pretty difficult to navigate, or so I've found thus far.

So, if you're willing to lend a hand, I would greatly appreciate it. Here are the requirements I have determined for my own Class B:

- Ford base E-series 1997-2003 (I'm most mechanically familiar with these vehicles)
- No pop-tops
- Straight body, no side fairings
- Must have wet bath, preferably full standing (I'm 5'10" so I know I'll likely have to hunch anyway, which is okay. Standing is just preferable to a seated shower, though both are acceptable)
- Fridge, gas range, sink required
- one bed (can be a fold out)
- Needs to be able to tow a trailer or have a hitch attached for towing
- AC and heat will be needed

So far the only models I've found that fit these requirements (usually) are from Airstream and Coachman. Being extremely unfamiliar with the RV market, any information about other companies who made similar rigs would be extremely helpful. Also, if there are others out there which come close to meeting my needs and could be modified with relative ease, that would be useful too.

Thanks a ton for reading through my mess! I hope to become a Class B owner soon!

Alexander
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Old 04-24-2019, 02:05 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clarkebar View Post
Hey folks,

My name is Alexander, nice to make your acquaintance.

Having recently decided to take the plunge into getting a B class RV, I wanted to get some information about what is available on the market that I should be looking for. Resources for searching build history and production years or variations are pretty difficult to navigate, or so I've found thus far.

So, if you're willing to lend a hand, I would greatly appreciate it. Here are the requirements I have determined for my own Class B:

- Ford base E-series 1997-2003 (I'm most mechanically familiar with these vehicles)
- No pop-tops
- Straight body, no side fairings
- Must have wet bath, preferably full standing (I'm 5'10" so I know I'll likely have to hunch anyway, which is okay. Standing is just preferable to a seated shower, though both are acceptable)
- Fridge, gas range, sink required
- one bed (can be a fold out)
- Needs to be able to tow a trailer or have a hitch attached for towing
- AC and heat will be needed

So far the only models I've found that fit these requirements (usually) are from Airstream and Coachman. Being extremely unfamiliar with the RV market, any information about other companies who made similar rigs would be extremely helpful. Also, if there are others out there which come close to meeting my needs and could be modified with relative ease, that would be useful too.

Thanks a ton for reading through my mess! I hope to become a Class B owner soon!

Alexander

Welcome to the forum Alexander!


Your preferred specs may be hard to find. I just went on retrader.com and searched class "b's" in the 1997-2003 range. As expected, for the Ford chassis I found only a couple of Chinooks, and a half dozen Pleasureways. However, all of them have the wide body. Some are single rear wheels but some are double, but they have a shell that extends out about six inches on each side once past the cab. A good thing for extra room, just not your preferred style.

There are a few Airstream B190's out there, but the pickings are small for a Ford van in those years with straight sides. Good luck.
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Old 04-24-2019, 02:50 AM   #3
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After looking a bit more, I found a couple of rare Ford-based models:

https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/200...150-5007176952

https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/199...gen-5003686169

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Old 04-24-2019, 03:17 AM   #4
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Thank you!

I knew it would be difficult, but I'm willing to wait or explore other options. How difficult is it to add a wet bath to a Class B like the ones you linked above?
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Old 04-24-2019, 01:16 PM   #5
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How heavy a trailer are you planning to tow? In my opinion the Chevy LWB vans make better tow vehicles than Ford or Dodge. The longer wheelbase and shorter rear overhang make for better stability and sway resistance.. Mine is rated for 8200# with the 6.0L engine and 6-speed with manual shift and tow-haul modes. There are more Chevy conversions to choose from, too. Mine also has a smallish wet bath.

If you’re just thinking of a small fishing boat or something like that, it probably doesn’t matter as much.

For the record, this is the first and only Chevy I’ve ever owned, and I haven’t owned a Ford since the 80’s, so I have no bone to pick in the Ford-Chevy fight... LOL. I do understand brand preferences and experience. I’ve driven both in 15-passenger people-hauling service, and the stability of the Chevy gets my vote, though it’s a beast in a tight parking lot.
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Old 04-24-2019, 01:25 PM   #6
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Once in a while a Bigfoot Ford based Class B become available: http://www.classbforum.com/forums/f7....html#post8573
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Old 04-25-2019, 12:57 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clarkebar View Post
Thank you!

I knew it would be difficult, but I'm willing to wait or explore other options. How difficult is it to add a wet bath to a Class B like the ones you linked above?
I guess anything is possible, but I don't think that should even be considered. Keep looking until you find what you want and the layout you want. There will be enough to do on a 20 yr. old rv just to get things working properly.
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Old 04-25-2019, 01:08 AM   #8
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Default Found something interesting

Anybody have any pros/cons for this model? I'm discussing a deal with the owner right now and could use some input.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Ford-Odesse...53.m1438.l2649

There is another one in San Francisco that I was looking at, but another buyer put money down on it before I got a chance to check it out.

And yes, I know it's an older model of the E350, but I know Fords really well and am comfortable with the maintenance for these as far back as the early 80s.
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Old 04-25-2019, 01:41 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clarkebar View Post
Anybody have any pros/cons for this model? I'm discussing a deal with the owner right now and could use some input.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Ford-Odesse...53.m1438.l2649

There is another one in San Francisco that I was looking at, but another buyer put money down on it before I got a chance to check it out.

And yes, I know it's an older model of the E350, but I know Fords really well and am comfortable with the maintenance for these as far back as the early 80s.
Here's my take, but it's really yours that counts:

- Older means more things wrong or will go wrong.

- Possibly, no fuel injected engine (I don't miss carburetors).

- No roof a/c (or dash air per seller's note).

- No modern safety features like airbags & anti-lock brakes.
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Old 04-25-2019, 02:26 AM   #10
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Default Modern Amenities

Those are certainly good points. I hadn't really thought about the safety systems. I'll have to ask the owner about them.

Also, I don't miss carburetors either 😂
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