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Old 06-04-2013, 11:35 AM   #1
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Default older or newer for same money?

If you saw a 1987 aluminum frame at a dealer who has done inspections and 2002 fiberglass model private party with no inspections for the same money, which would you purchase based on quality build and maintenance factors? I live in the desert where we'd get little rain and intense sunlight. Insight and wisdom welcomed! Thanks!!
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Old 06-04-2013, 12:03 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by phxteach View Post
If you saw a 1987 aluminum frame at a dealer who has done inspections and 2002 fiberglass model private party with no inspections for the same money, which would you purchase based on quality build and maintenance factors? I live in the desert where we'd get little rain and intense sunlight. Insight and wisdom welcomed! Thanks!!
Really depends on what you are looking for..length, weight, number of people you want to sleep, layout. Look at the brochuers in the reference library to get an idea and happy hunting.

1987 Hi Lo Price, 1987 Hi Lo Values & 1987 Hi Lo Specs | NADAguides

2002 Hi Lo Price, 2002 Hi Lo Values & 2002 Hi Lo Specs | NADAguides

This was taken from NDgent's post here on the forum. It is a great go-by list. You can do a search of thinking about buying and find his post to read it first hand.

Basically, start with the visual items
1. Exterior
Look for water stains and discoloration on inside walls and around ceiling anywhere vents, skylights, windows, etc. exist.
Push and prod with your hand on the inside walls for soft spots (which could indicate a water leak and a damaged or rotten interior wall).
Check for bubbles in the wallpaper (a sign of delimitation or water intrusion)
2. Interior cleanliness of the unit-
Look for water stains and discoloration on inside walls and around ceiling anywhere vents, skylights, windows, etc. exist.
Push and prod with your hand on the inside walls for soft spots (which could indicate a water leak and a damaged or rotten interior wall).
Check for bubbles in the wallpaper (a sign of delimitation or water intrusion)
3. Test appliance functions
lights
fans
refrigerator
air conditioner
heater
water pump
range hood
stovetop
oven (if equipped)
microwave (if equipped)
stereo (if equipped)
4. Lift System-
Does the unit raise and lower properly
Check the lift system for hydraulic leaks (puddle under the trailer)
Check the lift cables to see if they are in good shape and not frayed
Check the seal between the upper and lower body halves for tears or damage
5. fill the tanks to the top and check for leaks
6. Battery
7. Solar Panel (if equipped)
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Old 06-04-2013, 01:13 PM   #3
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weight max of 5500 lbs, loaded trailer with water and personal stuff

sleeps 6 (ideally would like drop down bed)

I've been consulting the NADA database and figures for weight-- their rating seems to be halfway in between dry and loaded values, based on comparison between stickers on units vs. the database. Would you know why this is?


I'm most concerned about the quality of construction of late 80s models vs. newer in 2000 when company was going/nearing business end. Have seen several remarks about lower quality towards the end of their production years.

Secondly, I'm having a hard time deciding if aluminum or fiberglass is better than newer fiberglass over the long haul for living in the desert heat.

Any thoughts on these items?
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Old 06-04-2013, 02:39 PM   #4
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We have a 2010 model 2310H and it has about the same quality construction as most all of the 2000 and newer models. I used to help sell them and have seen quite a few different years and models. All brands of TT have their good, bad and ugly points.
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Old 06-10-2013, 08:58 AM   #5
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If you saw a 1987 aluminum frame at a dealer who has done inspections and 2002 fiberglass model private party with no inspections for the same money, which would you purchase based on quality build and maintenance factors? I live in the desert where we'd get little rain and intense sunlight. Insight and wisdom welcomed! Thanks!!
Teach,
You need to understand that when a dealer tells you they inspected a coach this old, they basically looked to see if anything is missing. You WILL find things that either don't work, are worn out, or break shortly after purchase. Same thing with the private party sale. In either case, the onus is on you to discover the true condition before purchase. Given the age of the coaches you're considering, condition is everything. If they both appear to be in the same overall condition, their "street value" is probably about equal. And as old as they are, they're both likely to need the same types of repairs/refurbishing. As for the fiberglass, if it hasn't shown any signs of delamination by now, it's probably not going to.

Dealers appear to be playing on current gas prices and thinking that high demand for pop ups makes them golden. There's a 2001 260RD out at Rowley White on Apache Blvd. in Mesa. It's in good overall condition. But checking it out thoroughly, I found at least $1,500 I'd need to spend to get it road ready and presentable, and that's just the stuff I could see. No doubt it also needs brake service, dump valve seals, toilet flush valve seal, etc. And it'll need the gas bottles either re-certified or replaced. Either of the coaches you're looking at may well need the same things, and it all costs $$$. It has newish 225 wide tires on it (should be 205) that rub the frame. They likely tossed those on, 'cause that's what they had lying around, to replace tires that were badly age cracked. The dealer said they inspected it, and it's good to go. Don't bet on it. NADA as equipped is $5,500. They want $8,000. How badly do you want to own a Hi Lo? Badly enough to pay more than retail value, then dump another couple grand into it? Be careful with these characters. A private party may be more flexible, if no more truthful.

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Old 06-10-2013, 12:03 PM   #6
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Teach,
You need to understand that when a dealer tells you they inspected a coach this old, they basically looked to see if anything is missing. You WILL find things that either don't work, are worn out, or break shortly after purchase. Same thing with the private party sale. In either case, the onus is on you to discover the true condition before purchase. Given the age of the coaches you're considering, condition is everything. If they both appear to be in the same overall condition, their "street value" is probably about equal. And as old as they are, they're both likely to need the same types of repairs/refurbishing. As for the fiberglass, if it hasn't shown any signs of delamination by now, it's probably not going to.

Dealers appear to be playing on current gas prices and thinking that high demand for pop ups makes them golden. There's a 2001 260RD out at Rowley White on Apache Blvd. in Mesa. It's in good overall condition. But checking it out thoroughly, I found at least $1,500 I'd need to spend to get it road ready and presentable, and that's just the stuff I could see. No doubt it also needs brake service, dump valve seals, toilet flush valve seal, etc. And it'll need the gas bottles either re-certified or replaced. Either of the coaches you're looking at may well need the same things, and it all costs $$$. It has newish 225 wide tires on it (should be 205) that rub the frame. They likely tossed those on, 'cause that's what they had lying around, to replace tires that were badly age cracked. The dealer said they inspected it, and it's good to go. Don't bet on it. NADA as equipped is $5,500. They want $8,000. How badly do you want to own a Hi Lo? Badly enough to pay more than retail value, then dump another couple grand into it? Be careful with these characters. A private party may be more flexible, if no more truthful.

Stu O
I pays to do your homework and not let your emotions get in the way. I always thought NADA pricing fell on the high side. Unless this trailer is in exceptional condition it is most likely worth less than NADA.
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Old 06-11-2013, 09:56 AM   #7
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Unless this trailer is in exceptional condition it is most likely worth less than NADA.
Exactly right. That's why I walked away from it. All the Hi Lo trailers I've looked at so far locally have been "rode hard and put away wet." And the prices asked by both dealers and private parties have been way beyond what I considered reasonable, given the NADA value and condition. So after more than 2 years looking, getting ready for retirement travel, I may have to start looking at other brands or even new coaches. I'm going to need something I can use several months a year starting about this time next year, and finding the right Hi Lo at the right price isn't looking like it's going to happen for me. Too bad. That 260RD has a great floor plan for us.

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Old 06-11-2013, 03:08 PM   #8
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You may want to make them an offer to your liking. If they aren't willing to budge just walk away. There are other HiLo trailers for sale elsewhere. Hi Lo RVs & Motorhomes for Sale | Used Motorhomes & RVs on Oodle Marketplace
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Old 06-11-2013, 05:34 PM   #9
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When I bought the 95 the dealer came down $2,500 and later I found out that I still paid to much as the price was still above the NADA price. However in my opinion we used it enough to more than get our moneys worth out of it. Towed it around 90,000 miles and lots of camp grounds.
Point is it pays to dicker with the dealer and walk away if he won't meet your price, you may fine that later he will call you.
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Old 06-11-2013, 07:16 PM   #10
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I agree with the previous two posters. Make the dealer an offer and then walk away if it doesn't work out. Remember older trailers will soon need to have the AC and refrigerator replaced. The water heater and furnace all are costly to replace. You surely will find some needed repairs. Dave Ramsey says"cash is king".
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