RE: Conversion Re-Make

Discussion in 'Class A / Diesel Pushers' started by Sydny Greene, Oct 13, 2011.

  1. Sydny Greene

    Sydny Greene Junior Member

    There was an interesting ad I had stumbled upon, and because I am looking for a well-built, slightly older, and less expensive RV, I read the content of the article. My first, and only thought, was to ask those much more knowledgable than I concerning a potential purchase.

    Stated in the ad was the fact the RV was close to 30 years old, and the owner replaced the motor with a re-built Cat engine, re-wired the chassis, and almost completely re-modeled the inside. Now he calls it a year "2000" due to all the replacements. My question is if he did all this work, would a re-built engine, and chassis wiring be suitable to last a long time, or would there be any rust underneath the coach to warrant being suspicious of frame/chassis failure down the road?

    I've probably left out some information you would need to advise me with, but the questions I asked were what I thought would be important. Thank you for anything you might educate me in understanding a coach conversion.

  2. Triple E

    Triple E Senior Member

    Are you able to inspect this coach or are you buying long distance. The CAT is probably alright but I would take it to CAT and have them look it over and do a SOS (oil analysis). I would be more worried about water damage than anything else.

    Also, Welcome to RVUSA. Keep in touch.
  3. Sydny Greene

    Sydny Greene Junior Member

    Thank you, Triple E, for your quick reply. First of all, I just needed a basic lesson in the possibility of the conversion of an aged frame/chassis lasting for a length of time, if indeed there was structural damage or weakening due to rusting. You answered the question appropriately, and now I have another question relative to your thoughts: What WATER?? Never did it enter my mind that the coach would be.....or could be....... sodden from exposure to water. To answer your first inquiry, NO, I am not buying long distance until I have a diesel mechanic do a thorough job of looking at the engine, and everything with diesel power in the coach. Then I have an inspector that will go over all the pipes, hoses, appliances, etc. inside the coach. Additionally, I have dealt with the Cat service people before, and I will ask them to do a computer printout on the engine performance. This is the best way to pick up any minor/major damage not seen by the naked eye. To have the SOS done, I will ask my mechanic to do this, altho he probably will do it anyway.

    Now, back to the water....please explain what type....and how much.......water would possibly get into and around the coach to cause damage? I am at a loss trying to imagine a water problem unless there were pipes, hoses, drains, etc., that could have possibly broken. That is a good call on your part, and with the many motorhomes I have had in the past, I don't think I have ever looked for obvious leaks, or dramage from leaks.

    Until these inspections are done, I would not buy this, or any other, coach. I might put a holding payment down with the stipulation that it be entirely refundable if any major problem is found. My inspectors would have to make these decisions between major and minor problems, but I would feel very secure with their input, whatever it might be.

    Thank you again, Triple E, and I also appreciate your welcoming invitation.

  4. Triple E

    Triple E Senior Member

    Any equipment that has been installed on the roof such as, Air Conditioning, Antenna's or any Vent pipes from the Refrigerator, Gray Water tank and Black Water tank are likely areas of water seepage. The door and window frames are another location for such water leaks. Is the floor spongy around the shower, toilet or kitchen area? With an ice pick or something similar, poke around in unnoticeable area's and check for Dry Rot. Are there any problems that could be caused by Rodents, wire, plumbing or insulation? Tires???? A rule of the RV world, if over 7 years old, replace.

    I suppose your inspector will check out the chassis, brakes, drive line, and suspension.

    Send us some picture's. Would love to see this conversion.
  5. Sydny Greene

    Sydny Greene Junior Member

    Aloha Triple E!

    Thank you again for your kind and informative responses. Your statement of "if over 7 years old, replace" is ominous for me. Most of the well-built coaches which are within my affordability are well into "old age". What would you suggest I do if a good, but old, coach is available? The thoughts of water from the roof is an excellant idea, especially when the roof was raised somewhat during their redecorating. The ad did not say anything about the tires, so I am assuming they are about ready to be replaced......this would run with my luck to have to replace 10 tires!

    An idea I have is to send you, via your PM, the composite ad, and you can read for yourself things I might have forgotten to tell you, and any other information relative to what I would have to be aware of. I know this is a lot to ask, and if you would prefer not to do it, I would cetainly understand.

    Thank you again, and I will be sending this along very shortly.

  6. Triple E

    Triple E Senior Member

    No problem Sydny. Hopefully Rod, 730, and Nash will step in also. These two gentlemen have are very helpful.
  7. Triple E

    Triple E Senior Member

    I have forwarded your PM to three of the most honest people on this site. I believe they all have hands on experience this. Not saying we only have three honest people here. There are many. I just feel they are better at this then I am. :applause: I could not find your pictures but I will keep trying.
  8. Cruzincat

    Cruzincat Member

    I think the 7 year rule was attributed to the tires only.
  9. Triple E

    Triple E Senior Member

    I am a little concerned about the add height. This could restrict you from some highways.
  10. Guest

    Guest Guest

    well i have read the whole thread ,, and i agree on the tires ,, and a couple of things that kinda bother me ,, well quite a few ,, but anyways ,, (1) if they have put all this money and time ino this unit ,, why are they sellling it ,, and why not asking more for it ??? (2) are all the mods that were done ,, done to code ??? that way u are safe if u do buy it ,, (3) the roof extension has me concerned ,, i would have to see what they really did to extend it ,, i would not feel safe with it unless it was inspected and also u actually seen what they did (4) ,, why so many water pumps and waste valves ??? u onoy need one fresh water pump no matter how big the coach is ,, and only 2 waste valves ,, one black ,, one gray ,, all in all from what i have read ,, someone is trying to get rid of something they know is unsafe and they also know is not worth them keeping ,, i for one would not do all that "has said to have been done " then sell my coach ,, i have done alot of conversions ,, and they parts and labor have run into more then what u have shown us ,, and they only went back with the basic stuff ,, agian ,, IMO ,, i would for sure see if u cant one way or another try and see the coach fro real ,, pics can be doctored to make anything look great ,, if they say that the coach is not avial for u to come and see it ,,, run very fast from that deal ,, somthing is up ,, as i said ,, i would have to see and touch it to really take thier word for it ,, plus drive it ,, heck u never know ,, u might take off on a drive ,, and it will ride like a log wagon ,, hope this helps u out some ,, feel free to let us know back :)
  11. Sydny Greene

    Sydny Greene Junior Member

    Aloha 730 and Triple E!

    Your suggestions are right on! Apparently, from speaking with the owner, he inherited this coach from his father, and the new owner drove it from Oregon to Nashville......where it resides now. As I thought more and more about this re-do job, I was thinking of 30+ years of old wiring.....he said new wire was replaced on/in the chassis, but there is more wire than just that holding the chassis together. Also, not only was the coach roof raised, but the sides were extended from 92 to 102(?) inches, and that was where the extra foam insulation was blown in. The concern I have....which is many, but hardly anything like your honest answer, 730, is the fact the new owner is an RV Dealer! He said he only sells small trailers and pop-ups, but he is a salesman, nevertheless. If he were a dump truck driver, engineer, teacher, etc., anything but a DEALER, I would really believe all he said to me. No offense to any of you that are dealers, but my gut has been burned so many times by RV and car dealers, I am very shy of their stories.

    There are some pictures with the ad, and if I could find a way to send them I would, but as you said, they can be doctored to look perfect. I am currently teetering on the brink as to whether I want to pay a mechanic to drive down from KY to go over the coach. Obviousely, I am too far to hop over just for a couple days, so I would have to depend on getting somebody well-versed in diesel mechanics, and the accompaning hardware, to make a sound judgement.

    If you reside in TN, 730, and are close to Nashville, I would ask you for a recommendation. But, in the meantime, I have to feel comfortable with a monster bus like this.....not in driving it....piece of cake......but if I needed something fixed, the new owner said everytime he stops to have something done, it's at least 1000 smackers! Knowing my luck, in 6-months I would have my total retirement spent!

    I'm actually looking for something solid, with 2 room and bedroom......with all mechanical parts actually working well, the tires with at least 3 years left on them, auto electrical reel, nice leather furniture, and for a speacial treat for me.....a dishwasher! I know what you guys are thinking now......"and she wants the world for a song". Yep, but I'll keep looking, and there are some really nice coaches out there, but most are older than Methosola.

    Thank you again, 730 and Triple E, and if you happen to see something that would fill the bill, please let me know immediately.

  12. Triple E

    Triple E Senior Member

    You are right Patricia. There are a lot of nice motor homes out there. With this economy the way it is, for the same price as they are asking for this coach you should be able to find a very nice one. I bought my DP, 36' when it was ten years old. Does not have slides but that is A-OK with me. less problems. My wife and I both love it and we paid $25K less then this coach. I will keep my eyes open for you. Good luck and will keep in touch. -Steve
  13. Guest

    Guest Guest

    i agree with u steve on the slides ,, i have been in 4 diff MH's my parents owned ,, and none had slides ,, just more to to go wrong ,, but if u would like Patricia ,, i would gladly go and see this rv they have "so called redone" i am not that far from nashville ,, give me an adress and i will go ck it out ,, and i will take pics ,, and post them in the albums
  14. Triple E

    Triple E Senior Member

    See Patricia, we have a great group of people on this site. And Rod is definitely one of them. :applause:
  15. Sydny Greene

    Sydny Greene Junior Member

    YOU GUYS ARE SO WONDERFUL!!! Thank you for your thoughts, help and friendship. Rod, I don,t want you to go out of your way for me, but if this is a question of "how-in-the-heck-did-they-do-this?", well go right ahead. The owners' name is Gordon, and his phone number is 615-428-2732. I sent the URL of this ad to both of you....were you able to open it, and were there pictures included?

    I will be anxious to hear what you have to say about this monster bus, and I'm sure Steve would like to hear every word also! So again, I appreciate everything both of you have shared with me, and I wish you the very best. We'll keep in touch.


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