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Old 03-30-2017, 06:09 PM   #1
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Default Class B that Sleeps 4

Hello!

I am completely new to RVs, but my husband and I are considering getting an RV soon. The Class B RVs really appeal to me because I already drive an extended height, extended length Dodge Sprinter for my work so I know I can handle driving it. Also, I like that they don't really look like RVs and I can store it at home.

That said, I don't know if a class B is really right for us or not. We have a young daughter (1 year), so we really need an RV that sleeps more than 2. Ideally, it would sleep 4 so in the future she can bring a friend.

We are used to tent camping. We've been camping in a small "4 man" tent for years, so I'm used to having no space. You can't stand up in our tent, for example. We intend to use the RV for short camping trips and when our daughter is older we will likely set her and her friend(s) up in a tent. We'd also like to use it for tailgating. We have no plans to take really long trips currently.

So, all of that to say, I don't mind being tight on space. I know we won't have unlimited storage space (also fine). What I'm not sure about is the comfort of actually sleeping in the RV. Part of why we want one is because we want to not have to sleep on an uncomfortable air mattress anymore. There's really no point if sleeping is going to be uncomfortable.

Also, maybe there are other things I'm just not considering, I don't know. Any advice is appreciated!
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Old 03-30-2017, 07:57 PM   #2
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I think the Hymer Activ Optional Folding Mattress for Front Bed looks like a good option on a small chassis B Class RV
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Old 03-30-2017, 08:26 PM   #3
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From the mid 70-ties trough the eighties we had VW Westfalias, they were good to accommodate comfortable sleeping with our first son, then daughter, and got a little tight with our second son. 2 kids slept upstairs, 3rd one in the hammock over the front seats and we slept on the rock & roll sofa bed below.

It is not really possible to get new Westfalias these days in NA but Sporstmobile, which used to compete with Westfalias is still making a similar van on the low roof Sprinter, it is a pop-top, colled by Sprortsmobile The Penthouse. It is actually better than Westfalia pop up roof because the side walls are from vinyl so no issues with drying. Is it a full winter van, not likely but good enough for 3 seasons. Sportsmobile Custom Camper Vans - Sprinter Penthouse Top

Good luck with decision,

George.
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Old 03-30-2017, 09:10 PM   #4
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We used to own a Airstream Sprinter Westfalia that truly slept 4 and were foolish enough to sell it.



I wish someone would bring a similar product to market
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Old 03-30-2017, 09:42 PM   #5
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As an alternative, you can get a "B", then go for an Airstream Basecamp for additional sleep space.
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Old 03-30-2017, 09:43 PM   #6
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When we look for a B class van in 2012/13 we noticed that most B-class vans were for two. It is a reasonable conclusion that marketing focus is on aging population with cash to spare. It is very different market in EU with many camper vans being able to accommodate young family like the newcomer to NA market Hymer.

If this van would be available in NA how many young families would buy it for $40K and keep it in their garages? https://www.volkswagen-vans.co.uk/range/camper-vans-t6
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Old 03-31-2017, 10:13 AM   #7
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We have a Travato G floorplan which sleeps 4 very comfortably (adult couple + 11 and 7 year old girls). It SLEEPS 4 comfortably, and rides and dines with 4 comfortably; but is pretty cramped when it comes to "living" with 4 (the cooking, showering, and dressing part). Of course, one 1 year old would be a much easier situation to deal with. We often take just the 11 year old, in which case we just drop the table and she sleeps lengthwise with her feet on the swiveled front seat. This is a GREAT set up because it leaves the passenger seat available, the aisle clear, and the sliding door easily accessible. It would be quite easy with an infant, as you could set up some sort of "play pen" on the rear bed while camped, and still have the entire van free and available. Of course, travelling with two is even better, as we then have a permanent bed and large dinette that needs no "converting" at all; we feel like we have the "whole house" and "all the room in the world" on those trips!

It is definitely do-able, and is a welcome and highly appreciated HUGE step up from low roof Van and tent combo camping! No more having to be at the campsite before dusk, or taking 2 hours to pack up in the morning, or dealing with wet tents and gear. No more setting up by flashlight with groggy kids, damp bedding in the morning, sleeping on the ground... The benefit of being able to pull over, pull the shades, whip out the bed, and go to sleep in any weather, at virtually any place, are immeasurable for us! Your idea of the tent as the kids get older, is a good one - the exact plan I had - BUT, the kids love the bed in the van so much, we can't get them back out in the tent on an uncomfortable air mattress, so we all sleep inside.

Our Travato has performed flawlessly for us. The power systems work great; propane and generator use is minimal, but well appreciated. The engines alternator and the solar panel keeps the batteries topped off, and the huge storage under the rear murphy bed allows us more room than we need for toys, "luggage" and camping gear. All the screened windows, the electric awning, the automatic maxxair fan, screened doors, and perfectly silent Truma heater, make temperature control a breeze (we hardly ever use the a/c). The dinette is great for family meals, playing games, computer use etc. We sleep better on the Frolli sleep system than we do at home (but that might have something to do with all the outdoor activity we do while traveling ). I actually often take the Travato to work, just so I can go to the park at lunchtime and heat up a good lunch, listen to the radio, watch TV, or even take a power nap once in awhile. It's street price beats all the competition, and can be less than 1/2 the price of some of the fancy MB "luxury" conversions (but we don't find electric white leather sofas and high gloss wood floors necessary OR conducive to our style of "camping")

I can't say enough about the promaster either; GREAT visibility, handles like a mini-van, good mileage, plenty of pep, fun to drive. I like it so much I am seriously considering buying another smaller low roof version for my every day driver. It has the lowest cost of ownership, highest cargo capacity, widest body, and best air bag system of all the vans on the market.

Yes; a B is definitely do-able for 4 on short trips, 2 or 3 on long trips, and an absolute god send for day trips and over-nighters. As far as I'm concerned, one of the main reasons for buying a B is the immense amount of actual USE you can get out of them verses bigger, more "comfortable" rigs, that spend most of their lifetime rotting away in a parking place somewhere.

Best of luck in your quest for the perfect rig!
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Old 03-31-2017, 10:27 AM   #8
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sometimes a"guest room" is a tent.
an Rv and especially a B is a pile of compromises of space and use.
determine the best config for 80% of your use.
throw a tent in the back for guests or kids for that other 20%

you will need rear seating which has seat belts- not all do

Mike
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Old 03-31-2017, 02:59 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ClassB4Me View Post
I think the Hymer Activ Optional Folding Mattress for Front Bed looks like a good option on a small chassis B Class RV
That could be perfect, thanks! I'll definitely have to research Hymer more.
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Old 03-31-2017, 03:13 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scottbaldassari View Post
We have a Travato G floorplan which sleeps 4 very comfortably (adult couple + 11 and 7 year old girls). It SLEEPS 4 comfortably, and rides and dines with 4 comfortably; but is pretty cramped when it comes to "living" with 4 (the cooking, showering, and dressing part). Of course, one 1 year old would be a much easier situation to deal with. We often take just the 11 year old, in which case we just drop the table and she sleeps lengthwise with her feet on the swiveled front seat. This is a GREAT set up because it leaves the passenger seat available, the aisle clear, and the sliding door easily accessible. It would be quite easy with an infant, as you could set up some sort of "play pen" on the rear bed while camped, and still have the entire van free and available. Of course, travelling with two is even better, as we then have a permanent bed and large dinette that needs no "converting" at all; we feel like we have the "whole house" and "all the room in the world" on those trips!

It is definitely do-able, and is a welcome and highly appreciated HUGE step up from low roof Van and tent combo camping! No more having to be at the campsite before dusk, or taking 2 hours to pack up in the morning, or dealing with wet tents and gear. No more setting up by flashlight with groggy kids, damp bedding in the morning, sleeping on the ground... The benefit of being able to pull over, pull the shades, whip out the bed, and go to sleep in any weather, at virtually any place, are immeasurable for us! Your idea of the tent as the kids get older, is a good one - the exact plan I had - BUT, the kids love the bed in the van so much, we can't get them back out in the tent on an uncomfortable air mattress, so we all sleep inside.

Our Travato has performed flawlessly for us. The power systems work great; propane and generator use is minimal, but well appreciated. The engines alternator and the solar panel keeps the batteries topped off, and the huge storage under the rear murphy bed allows us more room than we need for toys, "luggage" and camping gear. All the screened windows, the electric awning, the automatic maxxair fan, screened doors, and perfectly silent Truma heater, make temperature control a breeze (we hardly ever use the a/c). The dinette is great for family meals, playing games, computer use etc. We sleep better on the Frolli sleep system than we do at home (but that might have something to do with all the outdoor activity we do while traveling ). I actually often take the Travato to work, just so I can go to the park at lunchtime and heat up a good lunch, listen to the radio, watch TV, or even take a power nap once in awhile. It's street price beats all the competition, and can be less than 1/2 the price of some of the fancy MB "luxury" conversions (but we don't find electric white leather sofas and high gloss wood floors necessary OR conducive to our style of "camping")

I can't say enough about the promaster either; GREAT visibility, handles like a mini-van, good mileage, plenty of pep, fun to drive. I like it so much I am seriously considering buying another smaller low roof version for my every day driver. It has the lowest cost of ownership, highest cargo capacity, widest body, and best air bag system of all the vans on the market.

Yes; a B is definitely do-able for 4 on short trips, 2 or 3 on long trips, and an absolute god send for day trips and over-nighters. As far as I'm concerned, one of the main reasons for buying a B is the immense amount of actual USE you can get out of them verses bigger, more "comfortable" rigs, that spend most of their lifetime rotting away in a parking place somewhere.

Best of luck in your quest for the perfect rig!
Thank you! I'm going to look at the Travago G more. I think this and the Hymer could be good options for us. I'm not looking to really spend tons of time in the RV on our trips. We want to be outside and until now we've always gone camping in a regular car (actually a Volvo C70 convertible, possibly the least practical car ever) and tent. We know how to pack light and do 100% of our cooking over the fire outside. My husband would be really disappointed if we spent all our time in the RV.

That said, I am the one who wants the RV. I want a more comfortable sleeping surface. Also, I know we'd go on many more trips if doing so wasn't so cumbersome. All the stuff you mentioned about wet gear, setting up tents, etc., I hate all of that. I want to have the RV just packed and ready to go at a moment's notice. I'd love it if I didn't have to worry about stopping for more ice for the cooler on every trip.

It's also good to know you like the Promaster. I only have experience with my 2004 Dodge Sprinter. I can drive it and it's okay, but nothing special. It's also slowly rotting away and currently has no heat or AC at all anymore. So, I'll have to look at the promaster for my business as well (custom furniture). I'd love it if driving "Bertha" wasn't such a chore.

Thanks to everyone who replied! I'm a researcher, but there is just an insane amount of information out there and it's hard to even know where to start.
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Old 04-01-2017, 03:01 PM   #11
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Take a look at the RT Simplicity as well. Seats 5, sleeps 3+. If small children, 1 can go upfront across front seats and 1 can go on floor or sleep in back with parents. We currently sleep 2 adults in back and our 5'7 12 year old sleeps on the floor. at 6', I have also slept on the floor on cap pads. One of the advantages I see over the Winnebego design is the ability to watch TV/video on the back couch while driving. The distance to the front is a bit if you want to communicate, but that could work to your advantage.
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Old 04-01-2017, 04:57 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Creativenikki View Post
Hello!

I am completely new to RVs, but my husband and I are considering getting an RV soon. The Class B RVs really appeal to me because I already drive an extended height, extended length Dodge Sprinter for my work so I know I can handle driving it. Also, I like that they don't really look like RVs and I can store it at home.

That said, I don't know if a class B is really right for us or not. We have a young daughter (1 year), so we really need an RV that sleeps more than 2. Ideally, it would sleep 4 so in the future she can bring a friend.

We are used to tent camping. We've been camping in a small "4 man" tent for years, so I'm used to having no space. You can't stand up in our tent, for example. We intend to use the RV for short camping trips and when our daughter is older we will likely set her and her friend(s) up in a tent. We'd also like to use it for tailgating. We have no plans to take really long trips currently.

So, all of that to say, I don't mind being tight on space. I know we won't have unlimited storage space (also fine). What I'm not sure about is the comfort of actually sleeping in the RV. Part of why we want one is because we want to not have to sleep on an uncomfortable air mattress anymore. There's really no point if sleeping is going to be uncomfortable.

Also, maybe there are other things I'm just not considering, I don't know. Any advice is appreciated!
Safari Condo out of Quebec makes a great floorplan (XL Flex on either the Promaster or Sprinter chassis) that seats 4 and sleeps up to 5. Quality build. Worth the long wait time.
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Old 04-01-2017, 05:12 PM   #13
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Some of the older class B's, like mine, have the 4 captain chair configs upfront that turn into two twins.

I have the same issue as you in that I needed sleeping for 4, wanted something I could have in my driveway, and I didn't want to spend crazy money on something I wasn't sure I would like or use often.

Long story short, I bought mine for $6500 and it's AWESOME!!!!

I like the Xplorers too and have actually found a few for sale, but they don't have the same sleeping arrangements; therefore, making mine more desirable for my family.

I have fixed mine up and, I have to say, it is quickly becoming the envy of my "camping buddies" with new bumper pulls.

Having this one has definitely helped solidify my decision in wanting a bigger one in the future and making the investment (wait, investment?).

One last thing about my van. It's perfect for trips when my family goes with, but it's also perfect when it's just me. Some of my friends won;t take their "big rigs" when it's just them...too much trouble and overkill for one person.

My van, PERFECT for all occasions and has seat belts for 7.

My 2 cents,
Mark
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