Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 04-07-2015, 03:50 AM   #1
New Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 1
Default Howdy

I recently retired from my 3rd career and now I have time to do fun stuff. The wife and I are considering our first RV and I've done a lot of research and decided a class B is what we need. My wife is tiny and hates huge vehicles but I think she'd be able to drive a class B at least on the interstate. I've been searching RV Trader and found 2 different Chinook Councourse XL types that look like they'd work for us. One factor that makes this seem like a good choice is they are built on a Ford E350 and my brother has been a Ford mechanic for over 25 years (works at the local dealer). Any thoughts y'all can provide is very welcome as I am a real noob with this RV stuff.

About me/us: retired from the USAF in 92, and civil service in Jan 15. Married 38 years, 3 grown kids, live in the midlands of South Carolina...
__________________

NGIB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2015, 04:23 AM   #2
Silver Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 61
Default Re: Howdy

Chinook made quality RV's but be aware they are built on a truck chassis (cut-a-way) so they are a Class C. Sellers like to advertise them as Class B's to promote sales.
__________________

Caped Crusader is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2015, 04:32 AM   #3
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 178
Default Re: Howdy

Welcome NGIB and congrats on your third retirement. I retired 3 times: RCAF, Diplomat, Private contracter.
Buying a B class rv is a decision one bases on the following: I note the Chinook is a C Class but should you get a B class the following applies and actually much of it applies to the smaller C class too as I had a gaucho in my first C and I hated it especially at night and I didn't like the corner bed either in the 2nd C class, Here goes...

a) Your budget ie new or used
b) Your type of rving ie long haul trips or short trips of say a few days to a week or two
c) Size matters: an RV over 22ft9ins for example can be a problem to park in small shopping places. Mine is 21ft11ins and I park just about anywhere--some Cs are 22 to 24 ft.
d) Lifestyle INSIDE the rv: ie if you have an electric or pulldown couch/bed at the rear your don't have to trip over your spouse going to the bathroom at 3 am because with the mid-cabin pull down beds/gauchos that can be a problem. A 24 ft Sprinter might work for you. Many brands to choose from if Chinook doesn't work out.
e) Facilities: do you need a good shower? The Sprinters generally have the biggest wet baths. A few have rear bathrooms with separate showers, sinks and toilets. Then you have to sleep mid cabin--not so bad if you have a slideout so you can get around the bed for nighttime p-time. Here again in the C class a mid cabin bed can be a real pain.
f)A generator can be useful if you are dry camping without hookups and you have only one coach battery so you need to start it to charge your battery for lights etc. A solar panel system can help with that problem
g) You need some kind of pantry either included with RV or make one for your dry goods
h) Space is limited so planning for y our cookware, dishes, bar(if you use one-mine is under sink) and storage for clothing other than those hung in closets. Overhead cabinets should be adequate as well as kitchen/galley cupboard. If you need more space for your goodies you can put a storage cargo carrier on your hitch. I have a huge Gearspace 34 which holds 2 bicycles and a lot of other stuff. I don't use the bicycles much anymore
2. In choosing a used rv be very careful about buying from a private individual and if you do make sure you get a personal delivery, carfax, bill of sale and you know about that stuff. Point is though if you buy from an rv dealer OR individual get a mechanical check and for example, tires are no good after about 5 or 6 years max due to hardening of rubber regardless of mileage
3. The RV you mentioned is rare to see in Canada but is reportedly a good model. Winnebago has been making RVs longer than anybody. The Sprinters: Pleasureway(mine) Roadtrek,LeisureTraveVans are made in Canada and some used ones can sometimes be found. I like the diesel and Mercedes chassis because it has the nannies from MB which make it easy to drive on the interstate or back roads. Some people prefer Ford chassis. I do not but don't mind the Chev chassis units.
4. I know a fair amout about Rvs as I owned 2 C classes one 23 and one 28ft and both on E350 Ford chassis. They wandered all over the road especially in cross winds. A Ford front end feature never cured. So if you AND your spouse are driving I would check out the driveability of whatever you choose--in windy conditions/rainy etc IF possible. I used to be a rally driver so I know how to handle a vehicle under adverse conditions. My personal car is a BMW which handles so well.
I hope this helps you a bit. Welcome and please pose any questions you may have. Prices should be better there than in Canada and we are hurting now with the poor exchange rate. I will be trading my Sprinter soon and getting a LTV Unity(which is 24 ft or so but wife wants it). Regards
AL
sunny Vancouver Island Canada
Fastpaddler1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2015, 06:37 AM   #4
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 881
Default Re: Howdy

My valuable thoughts on Chinook (2).

Chinook has been gone for about 10 years.

the construction of the units I saw was GREAT...but the layout...


most have a bed/sofa..dinette bed in the center of the coach.

so that means you have to pack it all away every day.

even so with a large vehicle, the bed is smaller than many models.

wet bath (enclosed bathroom and shower) alot of space dedicated for something which gets little use ( we use the campground showers when available).

chassis- your Brother is a great resource- pump him for info in the ford chassis...I have seen many complaints about MPG ( and when i have rented ford 15 pass vans for work...they have not been great on gas).

I have GM's so went with a chev 3500 chassis, pleasure way lexor TD..we see about 15 16 mpg at 65 MPH.
easy for me to maintain as I understand the topography.

any RV is a bucket of compromises, balance your priorities;

ours were:

easy park and drive ( my wife has been doing solo trips to CA.)- it fits in my driveway easy....and it turns out some cities have length limitations for street parking day or night

no sideways beds ( too short, I'm 6'2"), no climb overs- that takes out many units.

suggest that youtube is your friend and you can see many models and features

only 2 of us so we didn;t need 4 captains chairs...we have the 2 up front that swivel, allows more room for galley and head

tow cap 5000#


I was very very hot on a 2004 Chinook Glacier XL ( E450 chassis) ...but it was a foot wider, 2 feet higher, 5 foot longer and 1/2 the mpg ( 6~7). Would have had to rent storage..and Spouse wouldn't want to drive it ever.

It's out there, you'll find the right choice for you both

welcome, Mike
mkguitar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2015, 06:51 AM   #5
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: SoCal
Posts: 792
Default Re: Howdy

Chinook made very good RVs but something to consider is the mpg is not as good as some other Bs 12 mpg tops with Ford V 10 compared to Chevy van based vans that can get 15 mpg.Maybe that is not a big deal to you. Fords also have handling issues with bump steer that can be remedied after market. Since all Chinooks are used, the previous owner may have already fixed it. You cannot ad a rear storage box due to the rear entry door. Chevy class b plus(class C) vans also get around 12 mpg. Basically any RV built on a cutaway chassis is a Class C and due to Box size and aero dynamics will not get much more than 11-12 mpg. Welcome.
stanw909 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-10-2015, 02:02 AM   #6
Platinum Member
 
cargovanconversion's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Florida, USA
Posts: 167
Default Re: Howdy

Quote:
Originally Posted by NGIB
I recently retired from my 3rd career and now I have time to do fun stuff. The wife and I are considering our first RV and I've done a lot of research and decided a class B is what we need. My wife is tiny and hates huge vehicles but I think she'd be able to drive a class B at least on the interstate. I've been searching RV Trader and found 2 different Chinook Councourse XL types that look like they'd work for us. One factor that makes this seem like a good choice is they are built on a Ford E350 and my brother has been a Ford mechanic for over 25 years (works at the local dealer). Any thoughts y'all can provide is very welcome as I am a real noob with this RV stuff.
Best advice I probably can give you, is to try it out first. Even a short weekend trip will give you some 'feel' of camping in such a vehicle.
Either rent one or you may be able to join a friend for a couple of days.

It is a great way to enjoy the outdoors but not for everyone.

Van Willliams.
__________________

__________________
My website describes the conversion of my Ford Transit van into a small RV. I deal with a lot of woodworking, but hope to be quite specific on solar as well.

CargoVanConversion.com
cargovanconversion is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT. The time now is 06:46 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×