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Old 04-22-2015, 04:37 PM   #1
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Four Winds 28Z
State: California
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New to RVs

Hello,

Just delivery of a 2013 Thor Four Winds 28Z. Looking forward to fun trips with the family. Also very excited about learning about tech and general RV upgrades.

-Jose from the San Diego Area.
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Old 04-22-2015, 05:26 PM   #2
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Congrats!
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Old 04-23-2015, 11:06 PM   #3
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State: Tennessee
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CONFESSION: I am a RV Rookie…but am test driving an Axis tomorrow. I like this unit but I am wondering whether anyone can suggest a list or items to look at or listen for on the test drive. A checklist of sorts that I can use on the walk through or on the drive. I am worried that I will be so excited that I will forget to pay attention and listen/look.

Any advice/thoughts are appreciated.
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Old 04-23-2015, 11:53 PM   #4
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Model: Axis 24.1
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For the test drive/look over:
  • Have them extend and retract the slide make sure it moves smoothly and that all the gaskets don't show any wear (when the slide is in look at the inside gaskets, especially near the gear racks--sometimes the gasket grabs).
  • Have them lower and raise the front bunk: watch for smooth operation all the way down and back up. Make sure the bed stays level.
  • Listen for engine noise--some early Axis/Vegas models had less insulation in the doghouse and are extra noisy
  • Run the windshield washer (early models would blow the fuse) better for the dealer to find that out before you purchase! LOL
  • Have them pressurize the water system, run the sinks, shower, toilet. (If they let you..this is a good thing for the pre-delivery inspection)
  • Have them run the generator--Onan had a batch of bad fuel pumps on that generator model
  • Look at the fender skirts around all 4 wheels--some models have cracks and the skirting may be falling off
  • Remove some of the drawers and inspect the rails: On some units the rails were not fastened properly
  • Likewise check the closet damper and the overhead dampers (the screw was loose on ours and about to fall out)
  • If you are looking at a 24.1 check the bathroom door for cracks and check the doors top latch pin (especially at the top of the door--ours was cracked and they had to replace the bathroom door)
  • Take a look at the mudflap behind the passenger side rear wheel: On some units the flap hits the exhaust pipe and melts
These are a few off the top of my head. I hope I didn't scare you--its a great unit you just have to watch for a few quality issues.
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Old 04-24-2015, 03:38 AM   #5
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State: Tennessee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamieGeek View Post
For the test drive/look over:
  • Have them extend and retract the slide make sure it moves smoothly and that all the gaskets don't show any wear (when the slide is in look at the inside gaskets, especially near the gear racks--sometimes the gasket grabs).
  • Have them lower and raise the front bunk: watch for smooth operation all the way down and back up. Make sure the bed stays level.
  • Listen for engine noise--some early Axis/Vegas models had less insulation in the doghouse and are extra noisy
  • Run the windshield washer (early models would blow the fuse) better for the dealer to find that out before you purchase! LOL
  • Have them pressurize the water system, run the sinks, shower, toilet. (If they let you..this is a good thing for the pre-delivery inspection)
  • Have them run the generator--Onan had a batch of bad fuel pumps on that generator model
  • Look at the fender skirts around all 4 wheels--some models have cracks and the skirting may be falling off
  • Remove some of the drawers and inspect the rails: On some units the rails were not fastened properly
  • Likewise check the closet damper and the overhead dampers (the screw was loose on ours and about to fall out)
  • If you are looking at a 24.1 check the bathroom door for cracks and check the doors top latch pin (especially at the top of the door--ours was cracked and they had to replace the bathroom door)
  • Take a look at the mudflap behind the passenger side rear wheel: On some units the flap hits the exhaust pipe and melts
These are a few off the top of my head. I hope I didn't scare you--its a great unit you just have to watch for a few quality issues.
JamieGeek, Thank you so much. This is so very helpful and I appreciate your feedback.
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Old 04-24-2015, 11:46 PM   #6
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So, I drove the Axis 24.1 today and was surprised at how easy it was to drive. I was able to back up just fine, stayed in the lanes and didn't hit a curb on a fairly odd turn. It was a slightly windy day and I drove on a highway with tractor trailers and other trucks and was happy to learn it wasn't sucked along when I was passed by a semi. JamieGeek, I used your list as a guideline and was able to confirm that the slide, bunk, generator, cameras, etc…the only thing I didn't get to was pressurizing the water system as I had to get to another appointment. Am going back tomorrow to do that. The washer/wiper system worked and I listened to the engine and it seemed to sound like a truck engine (maybe a big truck) it wasn't overbearing but am wondering if that is considered loud.

They are 'throwing in' an RV starter kit but charging for freight and and some sort of an inspection fee both of which are listed at $1200 each. Is that typical and are those the standard rates?

Thanks all. I still want to look at the Vegas (it looks like many of the issues have been resolved) but will have to drive a good way to find one to look at.

Finally, the sales guy said I will need to clean and reseal the roof every 12-18 months for best maintenance and to reseal the areas around the vents, antenna, etc… with a caulk type of goop in order to get the best results. Does this make sense? Is it difficult to do?
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Old 04-24-2015, 11:54 PM   #7
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The Vegas unit is identical to the Axis unit aside from the color selection and some external styling (headlights on the Axis are horizontal but are vertical on the Vegas). They are both built at the very same plant. Note that the same inspection list above would also apply to the Vegas unit as well.

The two charges for $1200 sound like they are trying the cheat you out of $2400. Tennessee isn't very far from the plant in IN..close enough that it wouldn't be more than a tankful of gas to drive it.

As far as the roof maintenance: That sounds like a lot of work! LOL We had our 5th wheel for 10 years and I think I cleaned the roof twice (granted it probably could have used it more). It is a good idea to clean it and put a UV protectant on it but you don't have to get up there every year and seal it (really only if you have leaks and/or you notice the sealant up there is going bad). The best maintenance is just a yearly (or twice yearly) inspection: climb up and look around. If stuff looks like it needs addressing then you address it.

Axis/Vegas comparison (note the headlights):

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Old 04-25-2015, 12:45 AM   #8
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it sounded like a lot of work to me too! I did notice that when the bunk was fully deployed it hit the top of the chairs in the cabin. Is that how it works?

I keep seeing people posting about a TOAD in reference to towing…can you tell me what that refers to?
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Old 04-25-2015, 01:07 AM   #9
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When we lower the bunk on our unit we move the seat backs slightly so the bunk can fully come down.
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Old 04-25-2015, 01:24 AM   #10
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yeah we also slightly recline the seats to lower the bunk all the way when the slide is out. You can turn the drivers chair with the back towards the middle and recline it to lower the bunk all the way when the slide is in. In either case the passenger seat just reclines enough to lower the bunk.

TOAD = a car towed behind the motorhome. We picked up a dolly to bring along our toad

If you decide to pick up either one I would suggest googling for "predelivery inspection checklist for RVs" (also search around here there was some discussions about that on here) and go through each item one by one with the dealer before you drive off the dealers lot with your shiny new RV. (These lists will be much longer and more comprehensive than my short list above.) Have the dealer agree to fix anything you find (preferably in writing) and discuss whether or not you need to leave the RV there for the fixes (Some dealers will let you take it home while you wait for parts; some won't. We were lucky and ours did.)
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Old 04-25-2015, 01:50 AM   #11
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Thanks, I have seen a few of those lists online and they are quite extensive. I want to do that checklist before I sign the deal but the sales guy seemed so say that all happens after I buy so we'll see. They are still too high on price so I am not rushing into anything. I am just trying to get a feel for the RV and understand what I may be buying.
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Old 04-25-2015, 01:56 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrgutierr View Post
Hello,

Just delivery of a 2013 Thor Four Winds 28Z. Looking forward to fun trips with the family. Also very excited about learning about tech and general RV upgrades.

-Jose from the San Diego Area.
Congrats on the 28Z. We have found that it is just the right size. It is big enough to be comfortable in, yet small enough to get into almost any RV or state park.

I've done quite a few upgrades on my coach.

The first thing you will want to do is open up your tail-lights and waterproof behind them. Those tail-lights are notorious for leaking.
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Old 04-25-2015, 01:58 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by flyfishgrl View Post

Finally, the sales guy said I will need to clean and reseal the roof every 12-18 months for best maintenance and to reseal the areas around the vents, antenna, etc… with a caulk type of goop in order to get the best results. Does this make sense? Is it difficult to do?
You will probably want to inspect your roof once a year, but probably not have to re-caulk it that often.
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Old 04-25-2015, 03:12 AM   #14
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Okay, more questions. I like the Axis but want a color combination that the local dealer (CW) does not have. Anyone ordered and if so, do you still get the price discounts and any guess on how long it takes to get delivery?
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Old 04-25-2015, 03:54 AM   #15
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I recommend deciding what you want (axis or Vegas), then shop the national market. I was amazed there was a difference of $12-15k for exact units from one dealer to another. There should be no extras except for sales taxes, if TN charges any. And they will try and sell you a 3-5 year warranty so be careful as they can be very expensive at a dealership. If you really want one, there are reputable third parties that have better pricing.
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Old 04-25-2015, 10:36 AM   #16
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Not sure I would want to order one. You typically have to put down a deposit when you do, which means you have a financial interest in a particular unit.

Of course, you are not fully committed until you sign on the dotted line, but whether or not the dealer lets you off the hook if you find the unit unacceptable on delivery is variable.

In contrast, if you find one on a dealer's lot, you can go over it yourself with a "fine tooth comb" even prior to PDI. If the dealer won't let you do that - walk out, and go to another dealer.

So, make the color combination a second priority; make the lack of defects the first priority.

Also, try to find a dealer with a good reputation for warranty service, as you will undoubtedly be visiting them in the future.

Buying an automobile is not quite as risky as they pretty much come built correctly from the factory these days; but a RV, not so much.
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Old 04-25-2015, 12:36 PM   #17
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I agree: shop around dealers (even look out of state) and sort your preferences in a priority order. Ours was (in order):

Generator, No Oven, Fast lane outside, Maple Interior, Godiva, and no outside TV.

The last three pretty much didn't matter for us although we would have liked to get the Maple cabinetry since it is a lighter color but in the end we're very happy with what we got (Gen, No Oven, Fast lane, Copper, no outside TV). The first two were show stoppers: If it didn't have a genny or had an oven we would have walked (At the time we didn't know the genny was standard).

A more popular dealer will have more units in stock with a wider variety of options on them so look around, search online you'll find something. (And I think I wouldn't go back to the one that wanted the delivery and inspection fees!)
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Old 04-25-2015, 12:53 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyfishgrl View Post
Okay, more questions. I like the Axis but want a color combination that the local dealer (CW) does not have. Anyone ordered and if so, do you still get the price discounts and any guess on how long it takes to get delivery?
It really depends on the dealer, some will discount heavily if you order so they don't have pay for it sitting on the lot. A quick order and deliver is easy money. It's finding the dealer that will do it. I surfed the Internet for units in ohio to give you a price idea. The cheapest I found on a 24.1 was $71995. What price did they offer you? Sometime you have to go to another state for the unit you want. We bought in Indiana but if that fell through the next unit we found with options colors and price was in Alabama.
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Old 04-25-2015, 12:58 PM   #19
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Here is a link to camping world. Not my favorite people after buying ours but this dealer could be different. Qhttp://www.campingworldofmemphis.com/class-a-gas/2015/thor-motor-coach-axis/412030 $69,999 in Memphis. Maybe this is the dealer you went too.
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Old 04-25-2015, 02:45 PM   #20
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Here is my nickel on the topic.

Another thing you can do is find an RV show. Often times the show price can be thousands lower than the lot price. Also, as with my Challenger, Thor offers special pricing for shop units and during RV show periods. The Thor regional sales rep authorized the dealer to sell me the Challenger at the show price 5 days after an RV show. Once they quoted that price I also negotiated some additional no cost add on items and a further price reduction.

As to delivery, from Elkhart In to the Central VA area what appears to be the standard delivery fee is 861.00. This was the fee for both my prior coach and the Challenger. Two different manufacturers, two different dealers located about 50 miles apart. As for inspection, Thor requires the dealer to conduct an inspection of the unit. If the dealer is trying to pass their cost off on you need to run, not walk, to another dealer. If this is Camping World keep in mind they are a stock company and are in business to keep their shareholders, not their customers, happy. They are owned by the same parent company as Good Sam Club.

On final point, folks have mentioned looking on a national level. There are one or two dealers that will pay your air transportation if you purchase an RV from them. Don't limit yourself to the in state, or neighboring state dealers.
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