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Old 11-10-2019, 04:14 PM   #1
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Default Your selection process for a Class B?

What was your Selection Process for your Class B?

Having owned a few Class A, Motorhome and owning an RV Park Space in Georgia. Were not new to RV Shopping, Camping, and Adventures. Were up now in age and still enjoy Road Trips. Being older we have needs that limit what we can do and for how long we can do them.

I hated waking up in the mornings of our departures from parks and starting up the diesel engine in our pushers. I almost always had attached the tow vehicle and had most everything put away in its place before pulling in the 50-AMP Electrical cord. I did so enjoy the drives to and from North Georgia and places West.

When the idea came up about owning something more flexible for our needs we took some time to think it over bouning ideas. A floorplan we could live with. I'm 6'-foot tall 245-pounds, WIfe normal and much smaller. I'm telling you this as it plays a part in what you buy. Sleeping on a 20"-inch wide bed would not work at the very least 30-inch wide was a hard call. Having worked in an office I like being clean and wash out my mouth a lot. I like things to look good and have clean lines. We travel to many away games for our college sports teams.

Hotels are always fun but I do not want to lap over 5-parking spaces. So we were looking for something like a van that could park in one space without much of a problem.

I understand everyone has what makes them comfortable and after all that is what it is truly all about being comfortable, Driving, Parking, Touring, Sleeping in, showering in or just having dinner with my special lady. So for us, the best fit is a 2020-Coachmen Galleria 24A, with Li3 with 20K Air Condishing.

My Medical problems require C-pap, 2-Diabetic Shots per day. and medications. So if you add all of this up you should be able to understand why a class b Galleria works for us.

I would like to know your selection process and why?
(Please, nothing about cost, gifting, Great Deal). Just your selection?
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Old 11-10-2019, 07:56 PM   #2
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Default Pleasure-Way Ascent

Well, since you removed "price" from the considerations I get to dream a bit while I type this. I have a LONG list of places in North America I still want to visit. Some are national parks but other are in metropolitan areas... like all the touristy Boston and Washington DC stuff. So, easy urban parking is important. I travel mostly alone or with my small dog so a single small sleeping area is fine for me. I always bring a bicycle with me so having a place to secure it, preferably inside the coach is important. TMI perhaps, but I need to pee at least once in the middle of the night so an inside toilet is important. I eat like a single guy so microwave cooking is nice, and better if I don't need to start the generator just to heat up something small. I've learned resale value is important, the next one will be coach #3 and I lost my financial ass on the the last one.

I'm in tawdry lust with the new Mercedes chassis. The 144 WB will go anywhere. I value Pleasure-way's 6 year warranty.
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Old 11-10-2019, 10:16 PM   #3
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We have had three Class Bs and have a fourth on order. The first one we bought off a dealer’s lot of what was available at the time. I did a lot of research in 2005 and came down to two models, the Leisure Travel Vans and the Pleasure-way Plateau. They had similar quality and almost identical floor plans. The floor plan was the decider. The better deal was the Pleasure-way. We put four years and 61,000 miles in to learn what we thought what we wanted next. There were unacceptable conditions in a Pleasure-way we come to not want it again. The driver’s seat could not extend the full range and it couldn’t be turned around. And there were some nit-picking things as well.

So, our second van was a Great West Van Legend. They improved there cabinetry (which I did not like before) in the intervening 4 years and had a similar floor plan which we came to like and answered all our nit-picking desires. They were willing to work with me on some modifications such as a second battery which Pleasure-way was unwilling to do. Then almost immediately in the line behind me Mike Neundorfer was building a van with several other innovations that got me lusting. But I held off for another 4 years and 65,000 miles because Neundorfer started up Advanced RV to build his ultimate van as he also had similar frustrations but the initial offering was just a better Great West Van with further refinements and customer choices and Mike N admitted there was still some stuff to come to pass so I bided my time although I was their first customer to visit them before they built their first Class B.

When I was ready and when ARV advanced their development of lithium ion batteries and put in second alternators I brought my own ideas to them—the electrically operated three control (pillow, back and legs) articulating beds a first in the Class B for total lounging comfort I missed on the long road trips—a bed, lazy boy, and zero-gravity lounger combo. They took up the challenge and built it.

Now it is 5 years later and over 210,000 miles total having toured all the national parks accessible via a van, 49 states and all the Canadian provinces; my wife casually asked me one day why I didn’t want to visit many of the large cities considering I was an architect involved in buildings my whole career. We’ve done our share like boondocking in New York City and such but I was avoiding cities subconsciously. The straw that broke the camel’s back was when we wanted to visit downtown Victoria, BC and we drove around for an hour to look for a parking spot because they wouldn’t let me in the surface pay parking lots and we ended up over a mile away. I think it was right then I decided to get a short van.

So now it is an evolving desire after 13 years of Class B touring and filling in with new places that maybe I did subconsciously dismissed. Our three vans were progressively longer to 24 foot. The challenge now is can we get all the conveniences we have been accustomed to in a 5 foot shorter van. I always like a challenge. Thus, our new van is dubbed “Mies” for a 20th Century architect, Mies van der Rohe whose famous motto was, “Less is more.”
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Old 11-10-2019, 10:33 PM   #4
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What have you ordered?
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Old 11-10-2019, 10:49 PM   #5
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What have you ordered?
A Mercedes Benz Sprinter 2500 144 WB 2WD. ARV only builds on the Sprinter chassis. Last year they started building on the short van for the first time. Part of my challenge is to have them build a fully complemented Class B on a 2500 chassis. Every other one so far has been on a 3500 dually.
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Old 11-10-2019, 10:58 PM   #6
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Default Enjoy

Enjoy! They make an incredibly high quality product!
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Old 11-10-2019, 11:59 PM   #7
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We've owned an F350 diesel p/u truck for years and have towed a car-hauling trailer several times a year for 20 years.

We are 66 years old and have never RV'd. Months ago we decided to begin the RV adventure, and with already owning the F350 tow vehicle, a hitched trailer seemed the obvious way to go.

Before searching for a new tow-behind trailer, a friend mentioned having recently purchased a class B motorhome. I was casually familiar with classes A & C, but I had no idea what the class B's were like. So I began searching for B's on the internet. I almost immediately abandoned any thoughts of a tow-behind trailer. The conveniences offered by a motorhome vs. the trailer were readily apparent, and my wife shared the same opinions.

We feel class A's are larger than we'd like, similar to driving a house down the road. Same for the C's, similar to driving a townhouse. The ease of maneuverability that a B provides, like driving a condo down the road, seems like the best fit for us. We'll get our first chance to try out a new Galleria in January or February. We've been waiting a while since Amazon snatched up so many chassis, which has stalled class B construction for a while.
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Old 11-18-2019, 02:43 AM   #8
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A Mercedes Benz Sprinter 2500 144 WB 2WD....Part of my challenge is to have them build a fully complemented Class B on a 2500 chassis. Every other one so far has been on a 3500 dually.
Davydd, curious why you prioritized the 2500 over the 3500? Thanks
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Old 11-18-2019, 03:27 AM   #9
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I rented a longer Class B RV before we made our decision and we quickly learned that it was just too big for us. We also decided on the short Sprinter.

We use our Class B on remote backcountry forest service roads but also occasionally in busier cities. We probably stay in hotels about 30% of the time and eat out frequently which I can easily do in almost any regular automobile parking spot. Our shorter van is also easier to drive and maneuver on busy freeways but also on tighter backcountry roads. The longer van was just too big for us and it seemed to defeated the whole purpose of a van based RV.

Of course this means having a little less interior space. This required primarily a smaller bathroom area and a smaller refrigerator in our design (Sportsmobile). My wife and i are both under 160 lbs which made this decision a little easier. In the end we prioritized easier and better mobility over additional interior space.
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Old 11-18-2019, 03:46 AM   #10
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Davydd, curious why you prioritized the 2500 over the 3500? Thanks
Primarily the design of my bathroom which straddles the wheel well. With a 2500 the single wheel well will be below a vanity and sink so it won't protrude into where I would stand like a dually would. I will have a clear shower room pan (the bathroom) of 31" x 38" with only the water closet there compared to 24" x 38" in my extended Sprinter van and of course the water closet there as well.

Given that since I wanted galley cabinet storage and kitchen appliances equal to my 5' longer extended van, I had to get real creative on weight. But once I solved it, with the help of ARV's experience in calculating the up-fits in the weight of all materials, I found I could get by with the 2500. Less van cost and the convenience of dealing with four instead of six wheels goes along with the decision and possibly better mileage as a bonus in my opinion.

I will still have about 1,600 lbs of loading ourselves and other stuff which I estimate will not be half that load.

And finally it was kind of a challenge to achieve it.
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Old 11-18-2019, 10:57 AM   #11
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Floor plan and a larger fridge to accommodate my wife’s celiac diet. Once we made the decision to get back into RVing ordering and waiting was not in the cards. .
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