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Old 11-14-2015, 07:00 PM   #1
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ACE 29.2 vs. AXIS 24.1

Newbie to the RV world and this is my first post. I apologize for it being a long one. I'm retiring in the spring and my DW and I plan to do a fair amount of traveling the US and Canada by RV over the next 10+ years. We've put aside $ for an RV for 20 years, it's almost time to take the plunge, and after much research we are narrowing our focus to the ACE 29.2 or AXIS / VEGAS 24.1.

We plan to be "wanderers" in our travels, moving on every day or two, and traveling mostly by country or secondary roads. We plan to be on the road for weeks at a time, maybe even 2-3 months for trips out west. We don't want to pull a toad, so we want a coach that is easy to maneuver through towns, easy to park, etc. Maximum space is not an issue - we won't be traveling with kids or grandkids. I'm looking for input from anyone who has owned or driven the ACE 29.2 or AXIS / VEGAS 24.1 (or both).

We like the floor plan for the ACE 29.2 the best, with its separate dinette and couch and the walk-around bed, but are concerned about whether its 29 1/2 foot length will be too long for how we want to travel.

We like the AXIS / VEGAS 24.1 floor plan and its relative ease of maneuvering, but wonder if that is worth giving up a separate dinette and couch.

In either case we plan to eventually replace the couch with dual recliners anyway.

There are many AXIS/ VEGAS posts in this forum, but relatively few for the ACE 29.2. Any information you wish to share about these two coaches (good or bad) is welcome.

Retirement, here we come!!!
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Old 11-14-2015, 08:56 PM   #2
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First of all: Not a long post by any stretch--especially around here! LOL

If I were spending 2-3 months in an RV I'd want a bigger one like the ACE. The Axis/Vegas 24.1 can get a bit claustrophobic after a while (granted there are 3 of us when we travel). The Axis/Vegas will be easier to drive simply because it is 5 feet shorter (and on a lower chassis: E450 vs F53), will get slightly better gas mileage.

This really is a tough call since you have two opposing requirements: touring in the RV and the ability to stay in it long-term (at least in my eyes). Thus which RV you get would come down to which is your higher priority?

I do like our Axis a lot, and if it were just me I could probably handle a long trek in it (we've discussed taking it on a long trek to CA from MI but the wife and kid both said: "You drive it there, we'll fly and meet you" LOL).

We had our Axis for a year before we bought a dolly. We never took it touring, though, instead we rented a car when we wanted to drive around. Its so much easier hopping into a car rather than packing things up, retracting the slide, retracting the awning, disconnect water, electric, sewer... Granted if you are changing camp sites every 2 or 3 days anyway then it may not seem as big of a hassle though.
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Old 11-14-2015, 10:08 PM   #3
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Model: ACE 29.2
State: Florida
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29.2 A.C.E. Fans Unite!

Well, as you can tell from our thumbnail on the left, we made a jump to our first motor home last December with the purchase of a 2015 A.C.E. 29.2. We live here in West Central Florida, and are preparing for retiring from the 'daily grind' mid 2016. We've been using this year to expand our comfort zone during long weekend cruises. We love the 29.2 (great layout, and enormous storage). I wish there was better quality control at the factory (we've resolved all of the issues ourselves directly through the factory), and its been trouble free since the initial challenges.
Having the extra sleeping capacity of the 29.2 definitely helps us when others join us. I'm not totally disappointed in mileage for the F53 chassis. I've had no issue with the length of the 29.2 - easy to maneuver in small parks. Had a chance to park next to an AXIS at our last trip to Cedar Key, and I truly appreciated the difference. I think this was the right coach for us. I wish you the best in your decisions, and future adventures!
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Old 11-14-2015, 10:20 PM   #4
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Model: 2015 Vegas 24.1
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We have a 2015 Vegas 24.1. It's just my wife & I and our 15 lb dog. The Vegas 24.1 is the perfect size for us. The longest we spent in it was 3 weeks. It does get a little tight when you stay in it for a long time. We don't put the table up in front of the couch because it makes the living area seem pretty cramped. We either eat outside or use the side table between the driver & passenger seat. The shower is really tiny -- like hugely tiny -- and that takes some getting used to.

I've not been in an ACE, but we wanted something that was small and easy to handle. This summer we are going to do 45 days from Tampa to Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, and Las Vegas. We'll see how 45 days in the Vegas goes for space.

I think you would be happy with either choice.
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Old 11-14-2015, 10:32 PM   #5
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I will be living I my RV for the next 3-4 years and initially I was looking at the Vegas online. After going to CW and walking through it I quickly ran the other way. That's when I saw the ACE 30.2 and fell in love.
As already stated, it's really up to you and what your needs are. For me the Vegas did not work.
Make sure to visit the forum often and read the threads. They provide a wealth of knowledge and the people here are a true asset.

Happy hunting and good luck.
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Old 11-14-2015, 11:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cotton Hawes View Post
Newbie to the RV world and this is my first post. I apologize for it being a long one. I'm retiring in the spring and my DW and I plan to do a fair amount of traveling the US and Canada by RV over the next 10+ years. We've put aside $ for an RV for 20 years, it's almost time to take the plunge, and after much research we are narrowing our focus to the ACE 29.2 or AXIS / VEGAS 24.1.

.....cut.....
If you're new to RV world, I suggest renting a motorhome for a long weekend or longer and drive it to the kind of places you plan to visit. Try refueling in city gas stations, park it at grocery store, etc. Ultimately you are the only one who can determine what works for you.


I haven't traveled in either of the two units on your list, but have many 1000s of miles with 30~31 ft motorhomes. On the road they drove easy enough, and it's only in tight parking lots that their size was a significant issue. Except for some parks that limited site availability by motorhome size, and a couple of roads that limited motorhome size to 25 or 27 feet. That's rare though.

I personally like small RVs, but figure that if the motorhome can't be parked in a standard parking space, then it might as well be as large as needed. A little extra lenght doesn't affect cost or fuel economy that much as long as everything else is similar.

For what it's worth, I often parked a 24-foot-long motorhome in some standard spaces by backing in and letting the long rear overhang stick over the curve. With 30~31 footer standard parking places were almost always out of the question.
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Old 11-15-2015, 01:27 AM   #7
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Model: Vegas 25.2
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Welcome to the forum, Cotton!

Your experience will vary! There are folks that get along just fine with tiny campers, and some that feel cramped in a 40 foot luxury coach. Like with shoe styles, some folks like sandals, some prefer loafers or tennies. What works for you may change over time, too. Spend some time in both coaches on the dealer lot, and imagine your days and nights, meals and showers. The answer might become obvious.

We love our Vegas 25.2, we would also probably like the 25.3. The shower is much bigger, and the walk around bed is a must for us. We were comfortable on a two month trip this summer, but then we don't mind being close. We served dinner for 4 adults and 3 kids one night. Plenty of room for pre-teen grandkids.

We had a 33' class A for several years before, and found we didn't need all the room, all the storage or all the tank capacity. For us, the extra seating was unnecessary. Some couples just want more.

We rarely go without our small tow car. We hardly know it is back there, just have to remember to never back up! Easy and fast on and off. We tried using a rental car, found it not for us. We usually drive 7-8 hours on travel days, then go exploring with the car. Sometimes we go for the entire day, nice to leave the RV connected. So much to see in this great country!
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Old 11-15-2015, 05:24 AM   #8
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My take is that a 25' MH is on the edge of being too big for city parking but can usually squeeze in and out of somewhere nearby. In contrast, a 30' wide body makes parking difficult at best.

A crew cab dually can be quite limiting to find city parking, so anything longer, wider and taller makes just that many more places simply off limits. I think of the 22' length as the start of a parabolic curve with 25' as the point where city parking opportunities drop off to about zero quickly.

Unlike 20-25' lengths where each foot greatly effects mobility, once a rig size plumps to a wide body for longer 26'+ lengths they are no longer common vehicle stop friendly and differences in mobility per foot become only small incremental travel factors.

A 22' truck camper and 23' B were our most stop friendly no-toad RVs but quite uncomfortable when stuck inside for a few days. Our 24' class C was ok solo but we did pull a dingy about half the time. Our current 25' RV with a slide increased cooped up comforts greatly, though we've yet to travel without a toad. Certainly it could have been used to park at least near most of the populated places we've visited (eat, shop, attractions, etc...), it's just been more convenient to have a dingy for our travels so far.

If we get another RV for seasonal vs. weekend use/living, our preferred layouts have measured 34-38'. It's a good thing there's choices out there for all of us!
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Old 11-15-2015, 07:04 AM   #9
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Model: Vegas 24.1
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We went from a 33' to a Vegas 24.1 in May. Have put about 10,000 miles since then. The Vegas is perfect for us. We go for 2-3 months at a time. I added 3 shelves in the closet for mre storage inside. I also removed the couch table and made 2 smaller tables for in front of the couch. Better maneuverability for sure.
Looking back we agree we made the right decision.
Best luck in your search, happy upcoming retirement and be safe.
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Old 11-15-2015, 12:30 PM   #10
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Oh yeah: we've done some touring in the Axis:




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Old 11-15-2015, 01:02 PM   #11
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Thanks all for the feedback. We've been researching now for several months, have visited several dealers, and went to the Hershey RV show in September, where we spent a lot of time looking at a Fleetwood Flair, but unfortunately the ACE and AXIS did not hit our radar screen until after the show.

It looks to us like the Flair we really liked has a floor plan identical to the ACE 29.2. Unfortunately, no dealers within a couple hundred miles have the 29.2, but one does have a 30.2, in which the front half is almost identical to the front half of the 29.2. So we saw that one last week and really, really liked it. Next month we'll have an opportunity to visit several dealers with both the ACE 29.2 and the AXIS 24.1, so we will spend a lot of time in each to help us decide.

Either one will be a giant step up from the popup camper we had 30 years ago.

Please keep the responses coming, and photos are especially welcome (thanks, Jamie)!
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Old 11-15-2015, 01:51 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamieGeek View Post
Oh yeah: we've done some touring in the Axis:
....cut....
Nice pictures.

For us, that's a must. Extra size is nice but I would rather sacrifice room than access to where I want to go. And while I haven't depended on a toad, I'm pretty sure it's not for me. I want access to my stuff (food, bathroom, clothing, etc.) where I'm parked, not 10 miles away in a campground. Granted there is a happy medium because you can only take so much stuff with you in a Class B. That's why the Axis in lieu of a 24-ft van interests me.


On a related topic: I was just at a local RV show on Friday that was put on by 5 or 6 area dealers. I got to look at an Axis and a Vegas again, but also the FR-3 I had not seen. What that unit did was highlight for me that there is such a thing as too much openness.

For a small motorhome, it's the most open I have ever felt. That's a big plus, and a big minus. The problem is that it's all one big room. There is no separation -- no place to go hide if you want some alone time. For a quick visit in the showroom it seems great, but I'm not sure that after a week I would feel the same way about all that common space.
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Old 11-15-2015, 02:14 PM   #13
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One more LOL:

The last two in the previous set and this one are all from the same trip. We were trying to take a leisurely trip to FL stopping along the way to see some sights. Unfortunately there were a couple we didn't make it to because I couldn't find on a map somewhere to park the RV close enough (both were right in the downtown area of fairly large cities).
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Old 11-16-2015, 05:41 AM   #14
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Model: Axis 25.1
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My wife and I just went through the process of researching, fretting, and researching some more. We ended up selecting the Thor Axis 25.1. We actually pick it up next week.

I would echo the comment about renting a unit for a test drive. My wife and I rented a 24 ft class C for a 4,000 mile trip (with 4 teenage girls) and wow did we learn a lot. It really helped us determine what we valued and what we didn't.

We like to drive and stay for a few days and drive and so on. Some people drive to a location, park it for a week and then drive home. For us, since we do a fair bit of driving, the handling and ease of driving was an issue. I really disliked how the class C handled on the highway, it was like having an open umbrella while driving down the road. But we did like the ease of getting around in a 24 ft unit verses something over 30 ft. Cost of gas was an eye opener. When you're putting on thousands of miles, a difference of 6-8 mpg vs. 9-10 mpg can be significant, at least for us it is.

Renting also helped us determine what features we liked - amount of storage, sleeping arrangements, kitchen set up, bathroom size, dinette vs. couch set up, oven vs. convection microwave, etc.

We also learned that a towed car is a must. Just too much of a pain to zip around busy tourist areas or around town. We're going to dinghy tow.

So for us, the Thor Axis/Vegas was the best choice. No right or wrong, just right for you. Good luck!
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