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Old 11-01-2017, 06:46 PM   #1
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Brand: Still Looking
State: New York
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thinking about buying 2018 ace 29.3

hi I'm new to rv and was thinking about buying thor ace 29.3 was wondering if people liked the mh there likes and dislikes any major problems
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Old 11-01-2017, 07:57 PM   #2
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: ACE 30.1
State: Colorado
Posts: 387
THOR #5190
We have a 2017 ACE 30.1. Overall we've been happy with it, but with any coach you will find anywhere from a few, to some larger number of construction issues. Unfortunately its a bit of a lottery on how many defects you get, so do a thorough Pre Delivery Inspection and test everything.

At the ACE price point you are basically getting Class C trim in a Class A body. Nothing wrong with that, especially if you are just going to use for shorter duration trips and not expecting to full time in it. We chose ours because we wanted to get into National Parks and anything longer generally won't fit. Even then we have to be careful about site selection.

We've done well but did have a few things, all of which I was readily able to fix.

- Had to troubleshoot and reconnect wiring for 3 circuit breakers. Thor had scrambled the water heater circuit with the passenger and driver side receptacles.
- Had a problem with water getting into the furnace and causing strange behavior as the water pooled under the circuit board. Fixed that by putting butyl tape around the cover.
- A couple of drawer slides came loose in the back due to an insufficient number of screws.
- The OEM batteries lasted 6 months. Ours were Harris batteries. You will find a number of posts in the forum of how poor these batteries are and that the warranty is basically worthless
- Wife replaced all of the curtains with more opaque ones of her design. The blinds that came with the coach weren't all that opaque in her view. Also the front curtains will have a limited life if you get much sun.

You should realistically expect to have to make some investments over the purchase price. Figure on spending another 5% to 10% of purchase price in upgrades (this isn't just an ACE issue, you will find that in any coach in the same price range, especially with the F-53 chassis

- Recommend replacing the batteries with good ones, and also replacing the OEM WFCO Converter with a Progressive Dynamics Converter. This will provide you with good power and not have the WFCO improperly charge your batteries

- With any F-53 chassis, you will likely find you need to make improvements to the suspension. This will likely be your largest cost after delivery improvement. There are tons of posts here, but you will find things like the Cheap Handling Fix (CHF), a steering stabilizer such as a Safe-T-Plus, a rear track bar, replacing the too soft OEM Bilstein shocks with either after market Bilsteins or Koni FDS. You may also find you'd like to add Sumo Springs. Many, many posts around on the pluses and minuses of each.

I have done all of the above except the Sumo's, which are on the plan for next spring. The biggest bang for the buck were the Safe-T-Plus, Koni's and the track bar. Don't let an RV dealer do any of this work. Find a good suspension shop or do it yourself if you are mechanically inclined and can take a few hours crawling around under the rig.

You will find any number of other upgrades desirable. As with most RV's the OEM tank level system is poor and you might consider adding a See-Level. Also a tire monitoring system is a really good idea. Possibilities are limited only by your budget.

Check out the "Jerry's Hurricane Mods" thread for ideas. The Hurricane's are very similar to the ACE's, with the primary difference being the front cap and some slightly higher grade trim items in the Hurricanes. There is also an ACE Modification thread on the forum, but Jerry's is pretty active. Enjoy your ACE
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Old 11-01-2017, 09:00 PM   #3
mrw
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: A.C.E. 29.3
State: West Virginia
Posts: 87
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Have a 2016 ACE 29.2..... yes would purchase it again. Had a few minor problems which either myself or dealer readily repaired. We just finished a 2 month 5000 mile trip with not a problem. My advice is purchase from a dealer that has a good service dept. and close to home
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Old 11-01-2017, 09:44 PM   #4
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: ACE 30.3
State: Arkansas
Posts: 433
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I think Denver did a good job covering some things to consider with an ACE.

I'm a new 30.3 owner. I have had a few problems. Most I found and had fixed in the two days I stayed at the dealer doing an extensive pre/post delivery inspection. A few things have come up since.

I think the ACE models have some nice design/usability features, but they are on the extreme low end of the class A market, so I think his description of Class C trim in a class A coach is a good one.

Whether you get the ACE or another model or brand, do research and create a long check list for the things you need to check during the PDI. Ideally, you want to catch any and all issues while taking delivery.
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Old 11-02-2017, 02:20 PM   #5
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: ACE 30.3
State: Mississippi
Posts: 32
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We're a few months in to full-timing in our ACE 30.3. It isn't perfect for full-timing but you can absolutely make it work, I mean, people full-time in a lot less.

I kind of "griped" immediately after we bought it and had the dealer cover a professional alignment at a truck shop. It was pretty bad out of spec. It still didn't drive well so they covered taking it to a tire shop (we thought the front tires were bad). Turned out, they were BAD out of balance. The front right was almost 6 oz. off. They also had the pressure set to 110 lbs. After rebalancing all tires and setting the pressure to 82 lbs, re-alignment, and cheap handling fix (alignment shop did this for me), it drives MUCH better. I still want a better front and rear sway bar but it's more than comfortable to drive now.

Be sure after a realignment to have them re-center the steering wheel. It can't be done by pulling the wheel and moving it. The steering shaft has to be disconnected at the box on the chassis and corrected. Mine isn't perfect but it's close enough to not bother me.

Other than that, we've had some minor issues like screws not in good or coming out, staples for some of the wood coming out or breaking, etc. Mostly cosmetic. Our outside TV quit working and Thor replaced it without having to take the whole rig in, which was nice. I've called Thor a time or two and their support has been excellent.

Right now, I'm chasing a *very* small water leak in the wet bay on one of the clamps where the water pump connects. It is just an occasional drip and isn't inside (no wood is wet) so I'm trying to fix it myself.

In my opinion, the ACE is a solid foundation if you're handy and not afraid to fix things up or change them to your liking. I love the rig and would buy it again. The quality kind of sucks but that's most of them in this price range.
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Old 11-02-2017, 02:27 PM   #6
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Model: Tiffin Wayfarer 24 BW
State: New York
Posts: 13,478
THOR #8860
I may not have an opinion about the ACE...

But I'd still like to welcome you to the forum!
Have fun shopping!
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Old 11-03-2017, 01:11 PM   #7
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: ACE 29.3
State: Alaska
Posts: 23
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One year with our ACE 29.3

The upshot, yes, I'd buy it again. It fits our needs closer than any other rig we looked at. We do a lot of state park/national park camping and a 30 foot limit is our choice. There are only the two of us and there is plenty of room. I love the full side slide of the 29.3. I've had no problem with it getting out of alignment, just be sure to wait until all the noise has stopped when bringing it in. I don't pay much attention to the trim level that so many people do as most of it I consider "foo foo" (extravagantly elegant) and prefer plain and simple.

We've driven it from Georgia to California and found it a pleasure to drive (with no suspension changes!) and was amazed at how well it handles in some big desert winds. Now consider this, I don't drive faster than 55 mph. I developed this habit with my 5th-wheel and find driving no more than 400 miles in a day at 55 mph helped me get to my destination feeling refreshed. That doesn't happen when I push my speed. Plus, the journey is just as much part of the trip as the destination.

Several things came up that required service, none significant in any big way and I considered inconveniences. Should they have been taken care of before delivery? Sure. But I took care of them, some by myself (with some excellent phone service from Thor) and some by Camping World. Many consider CW "the antichrist". Our experience with the people there has been great. They are just too busy and our Atlanta location too small for all the work that they have.

Bottom line, we love it. About to head out on a winter's worth of adventure today. We live in Alaska for 7 months and wander in it in the lower 48 in the winter.
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Old 11-03-2017, 02:58 PM   #8
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Hurricane 29M
State: New York
Posts: 145
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We would love to hear some feedback specifically on the 29.3 as well, we have a 2018 on order because we really like the floor plan but have concerns with outside storage space in this model. Because of this we are now working a deal on a Tiffin Allegro 32sa and might cancel the ACE.
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Old 11-03-2017, 03:11 PM   #9
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Hurricane 29M
State: New York
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[QUOTE=naturescott49;95995]The upshot, yes, I'd buy it again. It fits our needs closer than any other rig we looked at. We do a lot of state park/national park camping and a 30 foot limit is our choice. There are only the two of us and there is plenty of room. I love the full side slide of the 29.3. I've had no problem with it getting out of alignment, just be sure to wait until all the noise has stopped when bringing it in. I don't pay much attention to the trim level that so many people do as most of it I consider "foo foo" (extravagantly elegant) and prefer plain and simple.

naturescott,
We also like the 29.3 for the same reasons you listed, and are interested in your take on the limited outside storage of this model and the smaller holding tank capacities. We do a lot of dry camping and state/national park camping with limited or no hookups.
Thanks...
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Old 11-03-2017, 05:13 PM   #10
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: ACE 30.1
State: Colorado
Posts: 387
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Quote:
Originally Posted by upnyfolks View Post
We would love to hear some feedback specifically on the 29.3 as well, we have a 2018 on order because we really like the floor plan but have concerns with outside storage space in this model. Because of this we are now working a deal on a Tiffin Allegro 32sa and might cancel the ACE.
While we. do like our ACE, I think if I had it to do over I would have given some serious thought to the Tiffin. Its overall higher quality and I believe its on the 22,000 pound chassis rather than the 18,000. You do pay some more for it.

At the time we bought the ACE 30.1 we though we wouldn't miss the bunk beds we had in our old travel trailer, but I think we do. Not so much for the sleeping space, but for the casual storage. So right now our overflow storage is the shower floor. Primary considerations at the time for selecting the 30.1 over the 29.3 were the extra counter space and the split bathroom. While it hasn't given us any trouble I'm concerned about the long term reliability of the Schwintek slide mechanics. Thor went to the 3 rail system for the 29.3 to address problems they had with the wide slides.
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Old 11-03-2017, 05:52 PM   #11
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: ACE 29.3
State: Georgia
Posts: 128
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ski2848 View Post
hi I'm new to rv and was thinking about buying thor ace 29.3 was wondering if people liked the mh there likes and dislikes any major problems
We bought a 2017 29.3 and like it . Knock on wood but we have had no major problems . We got back from a trip to Maine from Savannah with no problems .We have a couple of outstanding items that CW must fix . Before you sign on the dotted line have the seller run every system from radio to heater , hot water heater . Another thing make sure you get the manuals for all the systems . If I had had all the manuals it would have saved me an awning . Take it for a test drive and find the bumpiest roads . There are a lot of rattles . If you have any questions , ask them . If there are any problems have them fix it before you sign !
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