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Camper, Motorhome or Hotel

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by vatrap, Dec 9, 2009.

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  1. vatrap

    vatrap Member

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    Location:
    Portsmouth, VA
    I'm finally thinking about a camper/motorhome after 20 years of shooting.

    I use to go to the shoots by my self, but now my wife is shooting and we are travelling with a Brittany Spaniel as well, plus shooting equipment for both of us.

    We usually spend about 30 days a year at shoots, and now we have to find hotels that accept pets or board the dog.

    Dose it make sense to get a class c motor home or a 26/28 ft trailer?

    Used descent looking class c motorhomes and travel trailers are getting fairly inexpensive around here, I guess it's the economy. I have looked a a couple in good shape in the 5k to 7k range. The normal trip for us in the summer shooting season is about 200 miles and 3 or 4 days.

    We have two small SUVs, both with V6 engines so if we get a trailer, I'll have to buy a larger SUV or truck to pull it.

    We can't afford 80 grand for this adventure, nor do we want anything much bigger than 28ft or we would have to park it in a storage lot when it's not in use.

    Any opinions?

    Mike
     
  2. short shucker

    short shucker TS Member

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    Mike,

    Check and see how much it would be to rent one for when you need it. I've done this in the past and found it much cheaper than ownership.

    ss
     
  3. W.P.T.

    W.P.T. TS Member

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    Sounds like you have a good idea of what you want, what you need, and what you can afford ... Nobody would know any of this better than you, so go for it ...
    Have fun ... WPT ... (YAC) ...
     
  4. halfmile

    halfmile Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Green Bay Wisconsin
    28 ft is more than enough for 2 people. I would say a travel trailer with a living/dining slide would be perfect. (I have one).

    You do need a better tow vehicle. Preferably diesel 3/4 ton.

    I know weaker stuff will work but it's harder.

    YOu can get pretty good used TT's for 6 to 9 thou, and a diesel truck holds its value like nothing else in the automotive world.

    I had a motorhome, and another power train to maintain and licensing/insurance eventually was a hassle.

    Trailer insurance is less than 200 a year.

    And when you get to the shoot you can unbuckle and go shopping or whatever.

    HM
     
  5. Unknown1

    Unknown1 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Had a class C for several years and finally sold it.

    Did it make financial sense to use for shoots? We didn't think so. The shoot venue either has to have a campground or there needs to be one nearby. RV sites at shoots are often leased and there may not be any open. Campgrounds may have room but you will have to unhook the RV to drive to the shoot each day unless you tow (or drive) another car with you.

    There will be the cost of insurance (RV and motor vehicle), registration, upkeep etc. to consider. Our 4 year old C cost us about 2000/yr whether we drove it or not between road insurance, RV insurance, registration, inspections etc. Tires should be replaced every 7-8 years regardless and the less you drive the rig the quicker the tires deteriorate. If you buy one that's 5-6 years old it will probably need 6-7 new tires right away.

    These things are not gas sippers either figuring 8-10 mpg and a 50 gallon tank, and it's hard on the wallet to have that much vehicle sitting idle most of the year.

    A trailer may be in our future simply because they cost less to buy and maintain and the matter of getting around at the shoot is simpler to deal with. The main hang-up is the cost of buying a suitable tow vehicle (don't skimp here!) and then having to use it as a daily driver whenever you're not towing. Some people make the mistake of buying a tow vehicle that is just barely adequate for the job simply to try to save money and then they find out that towing with it is a nightmare experience. To leave a dog in the trailer you need to have an AC unit and either adequate electric service available or an on-board generator.

    We have gone the motel route this past year with our spaniel. There are pet friendly motels available and we have simply adjusted our level of competition to accommodate our capabilities.

    MK
     
  6. cubancigar2000

    cubancigar2000 Well-Known Member

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    Halfmile is right on
     
  7. Josephdog

    Josephdog TS Member

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    I suggest a class C motorhome or trailer.
    A trailer would be good, but as you said, you would have to purchase a more powerful tow vehicle. You would be able to detach the tow vehicle to get you around to restaurants, shopping, casinos, etc. Smaller RV’s and trailers don’t have a lot of room for carrying all your stuff. Your tow vehicle can help in that regard.
    A small class C would provide the same benefits of a trailer, but may provide less living area than a trailer. It would provide both transportation and accommodation.
    Motels would be my last choice. Finding a reasonably priced motel near the shooting venue can be a hassle. You would have to move in and out every day, and travel to and from the shooting venue every day.
    A motorhome or trailer parked at the shooting venue gives you a place to stay during a day of shooting. It is warm when it’s cold, cool when it’s hot, and dry when it rains. It’s great to be able to shower and change clothes between 100’s on a hot day. After a long day of shooting, you’re already home. The kitchen facilities will let you store and prepare the foods you want to eat. The dog will find it very comfy while you’re out shooting.
    Once you identify a prospective RV, I suggest you load it, or at least see if you can load it, with all the clothing, guns, ammo, food, equipment, and personal items you plan on taking with you for the 3 or 4 days plus 1 day. The extra day comes in handy when you’ve finished shooting on the last day, are tired, and don’t feel like driving the 200 miles to get home. Leave refreshed the next morning if possible. A rental might be a good idea, but it may be hard to find to book a rental with your dog.
    My wife and I with our two dogs find our Class A motorhome delightful.
     
  8. grnberetcj

    grnberetcj Active Member

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    Invest the money (wisely) you'd be throwing away by purchasing a motorhome, travel trailer/new truck, use the interest to pay for your travel expenses and keep the principal.

    Curt
     
  9. BIGDON

    BIGDON Well-Known Member

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    The last time I checked you only go through this life once so go the way you want, in the style you want. There are pros and cons to each. But if you are taking your wife make sure she has room enough to do the things she wants to do while you are shooting.

    I have had them all and if you are going to do 30+ days and long trips a motor home is the way to go. Between events you can rest, east watch a game in comfort. If you camp on the grounds you can have a whole different social life, make new friends and enjoy people that you have something in common with. You make these friends forever and run into them all over the country. After the shooting is over it is a different little community and it is a family affair. Your wife meets people that she can have a good time with while you are off shooting. It makes life much easier when your spouse enjoys herself also. Try doing all this at a Holiday Inn Express or otherwise and I've done that also.

    With a motorhome any Walmart is an instant stopping spot, a rest area is a true resting spot without leaving your unit.

    If you are only going to do a couple of weekends a year or a weeks vacation then do the travel trailer bit.

    Don
     
  10. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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  11. JIM SIMS

    JIM SIMS Member

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    Go to Rv.net,check the list of forums,go to tow vehicles, lots of good info.
    Good luck
    JIM
     
  12. Bob Schultz

    Bob Schultz Well-Known Member Supporting Vendor

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    Pulling is not the issue ...STOPPING is the reason to have a full size truck. The SUV's will pull the camper but in an emergency they may not stop it. Make sure you can stop what you buy.

    Bob
     
  13. Barry C. Roach

    Barry C. Roach Well-Known Member

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    I bought an old motor home ( 20 yrs. old ) for $15,000. Put another $2,500. in it. Low mileage, runs good, decent mileage, smaller than a standard MH but it works for me. I take it to all the MO big shoots, Ohio State and Sparta.

    I love the convenience but it's a hole in the road......you know the rest. Glad I didn't buy a new one.
     
  14. Big Heap

    Big Heap TS Member

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    Friend has a converted bus for sale - - - $100.000.

    $250.000 invested and only 35,000 miles. Pretty fancy for a trapshooter.
     
  15. oldgahchamp

    oldgahchamp Active Member

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    SS, I would strongly suggest a 5th wheel and a 3/4 or 1 ton pickup with an 8ft bed. Two people and a dog can comfortably survive in a 20 - 24 ft (or larger, depending on weight)5th wheel depending on the floor plan. Look around. There are a lot of them for sale, either privately or at a dealer. You can also carry a lot of stuff in a contractor type tool box in the truck. Good luck with whatever you decide on. Larry Evans
     
  16. halfmile

    halfmile Well-Known Member

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    smsnyder had some repo RV's on here a while back, check with him.

    HM
     
  17. Auctioneer

    Auctioneer Well-Known Member

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    I'm not trying to be a stick in the mub but just pointing out some things.

    Camper, insurance, storage, up keep, having a car or truck to tow it, finding a spot at shoots or camp sites, dealing with traffic when towing.

    MotorHome, insurance, storage at home, up keep, driving it in traffic, finding a place at a shoot,

    Hotel Room, just drive up and stay. Just close the door and leave.

    All have their + and -. I found that when I had a camper that the big thing was finding a spot at the big shoots that I had hookups. If you didn't then that was that. Driving a camper in traffic was not fun at times because of AH drives on the road today.
     
  18. ebsurveyor

    ebsurveyor Member

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    Buy a motorhome if you have money you want to throw away. A travel trailers is the only way to go. Nothing beats the convenience of having a camper on the shooting grounds. A serviceable tow vehicle can be found on most used car lots. My current one is an 05 suburban bought 18 months ago for $17000. It's a 4x4 with everything and had 25000 miles on it. A half ton will handle the smaller campers (mine have been 28 footers) with no problems.When towing it gets 9-11 MPG. Highway mileage is over 20 without the camper. This is the fourth suburban along with several pickups that I've used for towing. I run them 200000 miles and get a new one. Never had any major problems with any of my Chevy's doing this since 1988. I did have three diesels in the past. You will never recover the added cost of a diesel.
    [​IMG]
     
  19. shot410ga

    shot410ga Well-Known Member

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    I have been the Class "C" (28ft) and Class "A" (38 ft) route. They both sat 11 months out of the year. If I was going to do it again, it would be a trailer, about 24 ft. and a portable generator. In case there are no hook-ups. You will need the air conditioning. You can use the towing truck around town, all the time. A used trailer with a slide out is the way to go, for sure.
     
  20. GrubbyJack

    GrubbyJack Member

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    Class A's and C's are nice, but you still have to pull a car if you want to go a trap bank out on the south 40 or out to eat/downtown while at a shoot.

    I love my 37ft Sunnybrook 5th wheel. One thing I might suggest it that you think STORAGE, and be able to get to it, that means pass-thru under the camper. Yes it money, but you can take the interest off the trailer just like a house. Get the biggest truck you can afford, my 3500 Chevy (6.6l @ 12mpg pulling, and 19mph just the truck) is a dream on the highway, when an 18 wheeler passes, not a bump or push, smooth ride...GRUBBY
     
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