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The Search May Be Over

October 10, 2013

We spent two days last week and Monday and Tuesday of this week at PPL Motorhomes in New Braunfels, Texas.  New Braunfels is about an hour from where we’re staying in Georgetown, so we spent two hours roundtrip on Interstate 35 each day.  The first day, we started out looking once again at Class C’s, but finally had to admit they just didn’t have the storage we needed, so we started looking at Class A’s.  We found a 30 foot coach with a floor plan we really liked, and placed a 24 hour “Hold” on it.  We spent that evening and early the next morning online, looking at others that were listed on PPL’s website.  We returned the next day with the intention of checking out a 32 footer.  By noon, we had the Hold removed from the 30 footer and placed one on the 32 footer and went to lunch to talk about it.

When we pulled into the parking lot after lunch, we were agreed that we were ready to take the plunge.  I wanted to check out the storage once more time, so we also agreed that we both could walk away from it if it wasn’t completely right.  We went through every basement compartment on the 32 footer and we just didn’t feel it had sufficient storage space without making some drastic changes in how we travelled and lived.  So, we walked away.

On Monday (third visit), we went back to PPL to look at a couple of other motorhomes we had seen on the website.  It took about three minutes for us to write off one of them.  The other one had a problem with the door latch, and we were never able to get into it.  The service people even had difficulty and were going to call the owner to get permission to fix it.

We went inside the sales office to mull things over, and the salesperson suddenly commented that a rig had just arrived that morning and was sitting on the back lot to be cleaned.

IMG_7105 1

34 foot 1999 Airstream Land Yacht XL 355

It was pretty close to love at first sight.  After spending a considerable amount of time inside and opening every compartment and cabinet, we put a Hold on it and went home to sleep on it.  I spent a lot of time online that night, trying to find negative comments and bad reviews about this year and model, and couldn’t find any.  We returned on Tuesday and looked it over again just as a crew was finishing up washing it and cleaning the interior.  They had the generator running, the AC blowing really cold air, and the radio playing.  At that point, it was obvious that all those things worked, as well as the engine, the slideouts, the electric steps and leveling jacks.  Before we left, we put a contract on it and put down our Earnest Money.

I had reconciled the choice of a Class A by accepting that I had already driven the present motorhome through the ups and downs and two-lane winding roads of Ohio, Virginia, upstate New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine and Pennsylvania without any problems.  And Nell reminded me that I had driven the freeways through Houston, Dallas, Little Rock, Nashville, Memphis and a couple of other large cities.  The white knuckles do get their color back pretty quickly.  And since we had never seriously had a problem with the 36 footer in parking lots, gas stations or campgrounds, going with something only a couple of feet shorter will be fine.

I also considered that the amount of time spent driving was miniscule compared with the time spent sitting still and living in the motorhome.  So this 34 foot Airstream Land Yacht makes a lot of sense.  With a slideout in the living/kitchen area, there is much, much more floor space, and there is also a slideout in the bedroom.  The basement compartments provide very close to the same amount of storage as we currently have, if not equal.

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I’ll post more photos when and if the deal goes through completely, but the photo above gives an idea of the living space.

We had a choice of selling our present motorhome ourselves, or trading it in, or putting it on consignment.  We don’t want the hassle of parking it somewhere and trying to sell it on Craigs List, etc. so we’re planning on letting PPL take it on consignment.  We knew we wouldn’t get much on a trade-in.  In fact, PPL has already researched our Holiday Rambler and, along with information we gave them regarding updates and repairs, we already know roughly what we might expect to sell it for on consignment.  We were pleased to learn we’ll do better than we anticipated.

The process goes like this:  we’ll close on the Land Yacht purchase, get any extra work done on it, then park the old one next to the “new” one in their back lot, and move everything from one to the other.  Then, we’ll drive away and they’ll clean the old one up, and put it on their sales lot.

At the moment, she’s being given a through check out.  If there are major problems, we can still back out.  We may not know until late tomorrow or even next week.  But we ARE ready to move along with it.  One should never count their chickens before they hatch, but at this point, we feel that the only thing that would keep us from getting this motorhome is if the inspections show there is something seriously wrong with it.

Stay tuned.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. October 11, 2013 10:44 am

    Looks like a great mobile home Ralph, lots of space.

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