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Old 05-17-2016, 09:17 PM   #1
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Thor Gemini questions

I'm looking at a Transit based rig because the price is right, it can fit in a driveway (I'm limited on space when parking it), and Fords are decent.

I'm curious about a few things, though:

1: How does one go about getting a replacement mattress if something happens to it? Both floorplans have folding beds, and are in two parts.

2: I notice that the tow capacity is 5000 pounds, while other brands, it is 2000 pounds. This is definitely a plus.

3: Is the option for the A/C + heat pump worth getting, versus just using a Vornado heater?

4: Does one floorplan have two gray tanks, or did I misread the spec sheet?


Thanks in advance.
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Old 08-23-2016, 03:17 AM   #2
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am looking also. mattress is suspect i can imagine in a few years it will be hard to find one but they my be building other rvs with that type mattress dont know. 5000 pound hitch weight means nothing you still have to go by gcvwr. chassis gvw is 10300 gross combined is 13500 your maxed at 3200 a little more if you pack light. still a very nice unit in my opinion. pretty high up on my list easy to drive and plenty of room without looking like a giant bread box.
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Old 08-23-2016, 05:42 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by oldsman41 View Post
am looking also. mattress is suspect i can imagine in a few years it will be hard to find one but they my be building other rvs with that type mattress dont know. 5000 pound hitch weight means nothing you still have to go by gcvwr. chassis gvw is 10300 gross combined is 13500 your maxed at 3200 a little more if you pack light. still a very nice unit in my opinion. pretty high up on my list easy to drive and plenty of room without looking like a giant bread box.
For price and size, I would not rule out looking at the smallest Axis/Vegas. Just something to consider.
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Old 08-23-2016, 02:12 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by mlts22 View Post
I'm looking at a Transit based rig because the price is right, it can fit in a driveway (I'm limited on space when parking it), and Fords are decent.

....cut.....
We looked at them also because we liked the compact size, and the modern look of the interior.

The one thing I would suggest if you haven't done it already is to check the cab area as it affects function, something you have to experience because it can't be seen on a floorplan.

Getting up from driver's seat and moving to back is more restrictive than in other motorhomes we've looked at. Also, the passenger seat, when rotated to back, was very low to floor, making it difficult to get in and out of seat.

Other than that, we really liked it a lot (besides it having a slide).
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Old 08-23-2016, 02:57 PM   #5
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yep we considered the seating but we are still pretty limber for our ages and it didnt seem like a big deal to us. i hate getting only 9 or 10 mpg on something the size of the vegas or axis. friend has a axis and he cant get 9 on his. he says he drives the speed limit and he doesnt tow. 16 to 17 isnt great on the little transit but for the little bit of space you lose i will take the mpg over a little comfort. every one is different and thats why so many different ones out there.
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Old 08-23-2016, 03:51 PM   #6
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yep we considered the seating but we are still pretty limber for our ages and it didnt seem like a big deal to us. i hate getting only 9 or 10 mpg on something the size of the vegas or axis. friend has a axis and he cant get 9 on his. he says he drives the speed limit and he doesnt tow. 16 to 17 isnt great on the little transit but for the little bit of space you lose i will take the mpg over a little comfort. every one is different and thats why so many different ones out there.
I'm with you on mileage because we drive/travel a lot, although to me 16 or 17 MPG seems great for any motorhome other than a diesel Class B.

That range of MPG is also what owners report for Mercedes Sprinter-based diesel compact Class Cs (or B+ as some call them). On gasoline, you'd have to downsize to a ProMaster Class B Van to get 16 to 17 MPG.

We should keep in mind that for many RVers that only average driving 5,000 miles per year, fuel costs are not that great compared to all other ownership costs, which partly explains why we have many large motorhomes. At 10 MPG for an Axis, the average 5,000 mile year would only burn 500 gallons, or about $1,000 at today's cost. That's in order of $100 per month. Even if I could double fuel economy to 20 MPG, I'd only save $50 per month. Compared to all other costs that's not much to have a much larger RV.

In our case we drive a lot more than 5,000 miles per year (about 15,000 last year) plus I want a small motorhome for other reasons as well, not just fuel economy. Having said that, I'd rather get around 12 MPG on gas with a compact Class C or Class A rather than 8 to 10 MPG with something larger than we need. That plus I expect gas prices will eventually go back up considerably.

Anyway, good luck with your search.
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Old 08-23-2016, 04:24 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Chance
We should keep in mind that for many RVers that only average driving 5,000 miles per year, fuel costs are not that great compared to all other ownership costs, which partly explains why we have many large motorhomes. At 10 MPG for an Axis, the average 5,000 mile year would only burn 500 gallons, or about $1,000 at today's cost. That's in order of $100 per month. Even if I could double fuel economy to 20 MPG, I'd only save $50 per month. Compared to all other costs that's not much to have a much larger RV.
5,000 miles a year! I wish we put that much on our Axis--we're just about at the end of our 3rd season on our Axis and the odo just now has rolled over the 9k mark. (Really haven't taken it very far at all this summer .)

For the past 4 years my daily driver car has barely burned any gas at all (3 years of driving electric, plus this year of driving PHEV) thus I'm more than making up for gas driving the Axis around LOL. (Typical fuel costs for both the EV and PHEV have ranged in the $40/month mark or less driving about 1200 miles a month.)
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Old 08-23-2016, 04:52 PM   #8
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yeah im in the 15000 mile area myself we go all the time that why im looking for a diesel and small. but i understand its not for everyone thats why they make so many models.
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Old 08-23-2016, 05:41 PM   #9
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5,000 miles a year! I wish we put that much on our Axis--we're just about at the end of our 3rd season on our Axis and the odo just now has rolled over the 9k mark. (Really haven't taken it very far at all this summer .)

....cut....
That's a number I heard from an RV Industry spokesperson on a TV show, which surprised me thinking it was kind of low.

I then started looking at mileage on used motorhomes listed at PPL in Houston and 5,000 miles per year is about right. Smaller motorhomes like Class Bs certainly get driven more like we'd expect.

One thing that also helps us get a lot of use is we can travel/camp all year by living in South.
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Old 08-23-2016, 07:28 PM   #10
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One thing that also helps us get a lot of use is we can travel/camp all year by living in South.
Yeah ours sits a good 6 months covered, locked up, and sad.
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Old 08-23-2016, 08:03 PM   #11
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yes before we retired i was one of those who put less than 5000 miles a year on buttttt now whole different story. that is the main reason for the diesel lots of miles before you replace the motor.
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Old 08-23-2016, 08:18 PM   #12
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that is the main reason for the diesel lots of miles before you replace the motor.
How many miles?

When I traded in my 1999 V-10 for my 2008 I had 138,000 miles on it and it showed no signs of stopping. When I got rid of the 2008 (to get the Axis camper) it had 78,000 miles on it.

There are V-10s running shuttle buses at airports with over 250,000 miles on them still running strong.
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Old 08-23-2016, 08:45 PM   #13
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yeah the gas motors are doing alot better than they did years ago. but the diesel is still my preference i was an owner operator for 35 years and like the saying goes if you aint working in it your working on it. so for me the diesel works out better.
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Old 08-23-2016, 08:53 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by oldsman41 View Post
.....cut.... i hate getting only 9 or 10 mpg on something the size of the vegas or axis. ....cut....

friend has a axis and he cant get 9 on his. he says he drives the speed limit and he doesnt tow. ....cut....
One of the possible issues with getting lower MPG is that E-450 chassis may have lower gearing than the previous E-350-based Axis/Vegas. It would be interesting to compare between the two if we had a large enough sample. Also, I'm not sure why these smaller Axis motorhomes come with lower gearing than some larger F53-based motorhomes. It doesn't make sense from a fuel economy standpoint.

Regarding driving speed for best fuel economy, in my experience you often have to stay below the speed limit. Many Interstate highways are at 70 MPH or higher, and to get best MPG one has to stay well below that. When driving larger motorhomes I keep it at 62 to 65 MPH as to not impede traffic too much, although best fuel economy speed is much lower than at 62 MPH.

I'm personally looking forward to seeing if the optional V8 will be offered in E-Series motorhomes, and whether it might improve fuel economy by a significant amount. About 10% or 1 MPG would be nice, although fuel cost savings for most owners would be minimal.

It would also be nice to see manufacturers offer more Transit- and Sprinter-size motorhomes on E-Series chassis.
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Old 08-23-2016, 09:02 PM   #15
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How many miles?

When I traded in my 1999 V-10 for my 2008 I had 138,000 miles on it and it showed no signs of stopping. When I got rid of the 2008 (to get the Axis camper) it had 78,000 miles on it.

There are V-10s running shuttle buses at airports with over 250,000 miles on them still running strong.
I'm just north of 150,000 now.

Other than fuel costs, I'd bet on gasoline RV engine costing less to own in long run. Diesels are not what they use to be. They are now a lot more complicated. Additionally, diesel reputation is largely based on heavy-duty truck and industrial engines which are not comparable to automobile diesels.
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