Full Time RVs
Our first full time RV - 2005 Dodge RAM Dually and 2005 Keystone Challenger 32TKB  

When we set out to become full-time RVers we wanted to do it inexpensively because we weren’t sure exactly how long we would be willing to commit to the lifestyle. Our thinking was that we could live in the trailer for a couple of years then sell, donate or scrap it and it would have done its job . For that reason, based on our almost 30 years of RVing experience, we choose a well proven tow vehicle, our 2005 Dodge Ram dually with Cummins turbo diesel combined with a  mid-priced 5th wheel trailer, our Keystone Challenger 32TKB. 

We’ve read the many opinions of people who swear that as far as towables go, you can only full-time in a Teton or other expensive 5th wheel. But I think we’ve proven to ourselves that people can full-time in a far less expensive RV and still have a great time plus save a lot of money in the process.  

Back in the 60’s I had a friend, who along with his wife and two little kids,  “full-timed” for two years in a converted ex-Railway Express Agency truck. My buddy did all of the conversion work himself and his parents contributed two RV style-opening windows (“we want the grandkids to be able to see out”). My contribution to the cause was to paint the thing “Kenworth Green” before they hit the road. Their destination was Taos, New Mexico.  Remember this was the era of the “Summer of Love” and living out of an old truck was considered better than cool. 

They had beds for both of the kids and for themselves, facilities for cooking and a port-a-potty. There was no heat other than what the old truck engine could produce while they were on the road and their water supply was carried in jugs. 

One day I came home from work to find the old REA truck sitting in the drive beside my house and I instinctively knew that my friend’s full-time adventure had come to an end.  Shortly thereafter they sold the truck for more than they paid for it (try that with your high-end RV!) and moved on to other things.

The point is, you can basically full-time in just about anything, but people have become spoiled and demanding in their RV wants. Margo and I are no exception, we like our comforts, but the adventure of living in that old truck must have been a ball and we’d be willing to bet that it was an adventure of a lifetime.  

During the short time that we owned our Dodge truck and Challenger 5th wheel we found them to be the perfect combination.  Weight wise, the truck had about 20% of its towing ability left in reserve which meant that we could fly up hills and had room to make a few souvenir purchases without going overweight.   

At our time of sale, the Dodge had approximately 13K miles on it and had been 100% trouble free. It was powerful, reliable and very comfortable. 

Like most RVs, the Challenger had a few minor teething problems when it was new, but it too was reliable and comfortable. At the end of six months of full time use it felt as though it was just getting broken in. There were no signs of structural problems or things falling apart and it still smelled new.  

We knew that certain components like faucets and switches were sourced to a non-full-timer level of quality, but we figured that we would replace them with better items if and when the time came.  Fortunately, we never had to replace anything because all items continued to work perfectly right up to the last.  

In summary, our decision to move up to the new motor home was based more on “want” than on “need” and we have no doubt that the Dodge/Challenger combination was more than up to the full-time lifestyle. They will be missed.

Our second full time RV - 2006 Monaco Knight 40DFD Motor Home

Like many others, we had no intention of replacing our 5th wheel and went into the dealership "just to look".  Big mistake!  Our advice is to stay away from RV dealerships if you are happy with your current rig.

This style of motor home is commonly known as a "Class A" diesel pusher.  "Pusher" meaning that the engine is in the rear of the coach, bus style.  It had an overall length of 40' 10".  Power was provided by a 330 horsepower Cummins diesel engine developing 950 pounds of torque that was delivered to the ground via an Allison 6 speed automatic transmission.  The floor plan featured two slide outs and was perfect for our needs at the time. We altered the factory seating arrangement  by removing the passenger side loveseat and fitting a Euro recliner in its place. Usually it was just the two of us, and we preferred the comfort of the recliner to the loveseat. One unique feature to the floor plan was the bath and a half configuration.  This was a nice layout that enabled both of us to get ready at the same time.  The rear bathroom was completely separate from the bedroom and made the bedroom a stand-alone space. The feeling was not unlike a small apartment.

Our dingy (towed car) was a 2003 Mini Cooper S.  This was Margo's commute car before her retirement.  The Mini towed well and provided us with excellent transportation for sightseeing.

We used a Blue Ox tow bar and base plate which was provided for us by Towing World of Wildwood, Florida.  The base plate installation is very clean and nicely integrated.

For Sale - Blue Ox Base plate.  Fits 2002-2005 Mini Cooper.  Contact us!