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Old 03-08-2004, 08:05 PM   #1
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
Posts: 748

Wondering if anyone could estimate how much it cost to build a Class 8 motorhome rig?

For example, cost of:

1. used truck
2. stretched frame
3. levelers installed
4. box installed etc etc...

Just some rough figures so we have an idea of the costs involved.


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Old 03-08-2004, 10:07 PM   #2
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Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Cincinnati Ohio USA
Posts: 286

...As best as I can remember [tonite] the Showhauler was $60k the truck was $35k the levelers were $2k frame stretch was $ close as I got before dropping the project was $116,000 out the door......My tractor and trailer will be $60k out the door when completely finished.....geof

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Old 03-08-2004, 10:57 PM   #3
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OK Geof, now you got us.

I have been here for a while and I haven't seen much detail on how you're doing it.

I'm interested in your approach to this whole thing. Are you farming any of this out? Doesn't seem that you could for that kind of money.

I was looking for ways to help the process, build my own levelers, doing the wiring, stuff like that, but it sounds like your doing a huge job, I'm really curious to know more.

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Old 03-08-2004, 11:09 PM   #4
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Kingman AZ.
Posts: 59

I paid a $9,000 for a '94 Freightliner FLD 120 with under 650K miles on it and had it delivered to Arizona from Tennessee for a further $1,000. It already had been stretched and had a 24ft Grumman body installed.

One can pick up '90's tractors for anything from $5,000 to whatever you can afford.

Of course, they will nearly always have a stick trans and so you will have to drive the stick or allow for either a World automatic or an Eaton Autoshift to be installed. As my truck was the last year of the Detroit DDEC 2, the World or Eaton were not directly compatible and there would be quite a lot of wiring and reprogramming involved. The estimates I got from 2 different trans shops were around $23,000 including the core charge, labor, the whole 9 yards. Hence I went for the long established Allison HT 740 four speed auto at around $2,500 to $3,500 depending if you want a rebuilt one (not including any core charge, if they want one), then the rear end gears have to be changed to make up for the lack of an overdrive or you only make 60 mph flat out.

Frame stretches, I was quoted around $5,000 and up, the length was not too much difference as it was just more steel unless you needed another carrier bearing in the drive shaft.

You can find longer wheelbase tractors and with a 24ft body, a 265" stock wheelbase is a pretty good match.

Heavy duty levellers, I have seen some that were about $3,500, I don't think this included installation.

Box bodies, I was quoted from $2,500 to $3,500 depending upon condition, etc. The dealer in Phoenix I spoke with would not instal it as they didn't have the liability insurance. They would not even give you the "U" bolts. They would pick it up and put it on your chassis, but then you were on your own.

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Old 03-09-2004, 11:16 AM   #5
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Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Cincinnati Ohio USA
Posts: 286

......The differance is simply building it for yourself or building it for the genral public....I went with a tractor type RV and a custom built trailer-it is a 32'tripple axel car hauler which means it is .063 aluminum siding like a commercial trailer on 1X2 square tube studs 16" on center with a one piece .040 aluminum roof-not a walk on- with 1X2X24" on center square tube roof bows. The floor is 3/4" Advantec 50 year warranty flooring with 12 ga. Z channel cross members 12" on center with 3X8X1/4" tube main frame. The tripple axels are springs-not torque axels- the axels are rated at #7000 each.The CGVRW is #21,000 with 6 ea. Goodyear "G" rated I can haul trucks-boats-cars with a rather "spartin" living quarters in front-shower- toilet-sink-freezer-A/C-heater-fan-tools-couch-cabinets etc all 12vt dc and 110/220vt propane[scares me] the trailer will finish out at $15, to follow later tonite-geof kaye
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Old 04-01-2004, 03:33 AM   #6
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Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Hampstead, MD USA
Posts: 1

I am really interested in the details and pictures of your trailer. i am intersted in this option for the quality and the $$$$$$$$$ vs other options for trailers. With the flexibility of being able to haul just about anything, I feel this is a better way to go than most Rv's that are being sold as Toy Haulers.

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