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Username Post: GMC motorhome        (Topic#307126)
mikethebike 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 1

Reg: 09-19-16
10-01-16 01:59 PM - Post#2654360    
    In response to tmsnyder

:crazy :



Edited by gchemist on 08-03-22 10:23 AM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
pvfjr 
Newbie
Posts: 4

Reg: 08-02-22
08-02-22 01:57 PM - Post#2845353    
    In response to tmsnyder





Edited by gchemist on 08-03-22 10:24 AM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
Tony1963 
Frequent Contributor
Posts: 1597

Loc: Orlando Florida
Reg: 07-09-18
08-02-22 03:10 PM - Post#2845356    
    In response to mikethebike

The beauty of ownership is that you do what you want with it. I am of the view that you made decisions about the motorhome because it was part of a larger mission, traveling in it to places unknown.

20 some odd years ago, I knew a guy that bought a 1976 Chevrolet Chevette which was a Sandpiper edition and had special paint and a unique interior fabric. It was a low mileage 1.4 liter 4-speed car with no air conditioning, but very clean.

He took the car, did a lot of service and got the car ready for the trip. He drove from Philadelphia PA to San Diego CA and back. Yup, in that little car with no AC and an AM radio.

Interestingly, he said that he had no trouble with the car along the way and got about 28 MPG average. He said that he enjoyed the trip and took a lot of pictures.

I say, GOOD FOR YOU.

People fear change because it threatens what they know, or what they claim to know.


 
someotherguy 
Senior Moderator
Posts: 29600
someotherguy
Loc: Texas
Reg: 08-01-03
08-03-22 10:14 AM - Post#2845389    
    In response to mikethebike

  • mikethebike Said:
I just found this thread a few days ago and joined to offer my experience with a 1978 GMC Classic Motorhome. We bought one in 2012 from a guy in Phoenix who was the 3rd owner and who bought it from the 2nd owner whom he had been friends with for years. It is a ROYALE model finished by Coachman and is the 9th from the final unit built so it has any engineering upgrade GM offered. The OEM engine was a 403 short stroke that the 2nd owner replaced with a 455. Now, 1st things 1st about those engines....the torque numbers quoted by some as a justification to keep the 403 do not apply once you build an engine that is not subject to 1978 EPA. In 1968 the Olds 455 trailer tow package produced something like 520 lbft max at around 3600 and somewhere in the neighborhood of 400+ at 2300-2400 or so.....with a 2 barrel carb! I cannot see needing more than that.

Now, if you replace the engine with anything other than an Olds or Cadillac you run into the problem of the oil pan and the axle half shaft which is only part of your problem seeing as those adapter plate swaps have not attained a stellar reputation for ease of completing or trouble free operation. You then have the clearance with the engine cover problem that Olds fixed with a unique manifold that actually goes DOWN so the air cleaner case clears the cover.

Manny Treveo has built up a swap kit for the HUMVEE front wheel drive system which I've heard works pretty well....but why spend that kind of money to have to deal with diesel? You most likely will never recoup your money with increased MPG...think solar cell EMF.

Others have installed a 1-ton 4WD front end from a Chevy truck but that pushes the wheels out with 5" spacers and there goes your negative roll radius to keep you in your lane should you blow a front tire.

Some have installed 80mm Cadillac calipers on the front to increase the brake torque but I'm not smart enough to do that much engineering so I just went to WILWOOD and bought their Poly-Matrix 'E' compound pads to get a better coefficient of friction. Others have installed the electric brakes from the GNX...but the GNX guys I know say that system is not reliable...others did the hydro-boost....all of this to lower brake pedal pressure....I have no problem with the pressure required and if I did I would install an electric vacuum pump. But that is just my liking the KISS principle...

I also have not modified much else save for the air-bag suspension. The OEM Firestone bags are not made in the USA anymore and the China made units are junk. There are 4-bag systems that use a stantion attached to the big bracket that the pivot arms on the rear suspension mount to but that give the bags about 20" of leverage against that bracket that is transferred to the frame and the frame is not designed for those stresses. I bought a system from a guy in Washington state that uses late model air bags from a semi (you can see them on the tractor if the trailer is not there) that are available at most truck stops and cost about $80 instead of $400 and up. Just some plates to bolt to the bags and the arms and no other modification is necessary. Good old KISS again.

Now, for the subjective part...how is it traveling across the country in a 26X8 motorhome with an 11 year old and a 4 pound dog? Best road trip ever. People wave at you and kids LOVE the things. They get in places the big boys cannot think about and national parks limit the size and with the GMC that is not a problem. If you have a problem like a heater blower motor giving it up you just stop at NAPA and buy a GM part number item instead of a 1-off thing for a 'we only made 100 of them and you cannot afford a new one'. It is not as difficult to drive a is a dually truck. The body is aluminum and is closed foam insulated. You have a wrap around windshield that does not put an 'a'pillar right THERE in front of you....need to go to the head? Not a problem. Want coffee? You have 5 gallons of water that is heated by the coolant...instant instant coffee. Get caught in traffic from a wreck? Pull over, fire up the roof A/C and take a break with coffee and ice cream and watch the other guys who need to go....well, you get the idea.

Any complaints? MPG sucks....think 1966 396/375 Chevelle....about 9 mpg. But you don't have $80,000 to start in the thing and if you buy smart you should have a great ride for about $25-30K. And should it give any trouble YOU should be able to do most of the work. Now, the front bearings, according to the OEM manual, need to be replaced every 25,000 but that was before things like Mobil-1 synthetic grease. Let's look at that....suppose you drive it 12,500 miles per year (unlikely) you would need to R&R them every 2 years. If you cannot afford to pay a shop or buy the special tools to do it your self maybe you should not buy the GMC to start with. That is my take....because the thing is not designed for it they tell you that 1000 Lbs is max tow weight. A lot of guys exceed that but one of the main reasons I went with the GMC is that it goes places the big guys cannot. And who wants to ride around with another car/truck in tow anyway...not I. You need to be the kind of person who travels light. If you are like a friends wife...who wanted him to unload his work TAHOE so she could take more stuff to the beach....FOR 1 WEEK....a GMC might not be your best choice....but...on the other hand, if you can go for 8 weeks on 3 pairs of jeans, 3 pairs of shorts, 6 shirts, 1 pair of slacks and sport jacket and 3 pairs of shoes with appropriate underwear a GMC is just one of the coolest rides out there....and the wife does not complain about money spent on it near as much as she does for money spent on the Chevelle she cannot press the clutch in.



Imagine that, a reply to a 6 year old response, from "pvfjr" is why I ended up back here reading this excellent response from "mikethebike" - very cool insights and lots of info.

The one thing that really caught my attention was that the body is aluminum. For some reason I was thinking they were fiberglass, but I was wrong.

I recall the family of a childhood friend had one of these GMC motorhomes back when they were brand new. I was impressed that they could afford something so fancy, while we were tooling around in an old Ford station wagon with on of those old school metal-sided coolers so we weren't spending money in restaurants.

Richard

06 Silverado ISS / 06 Silverado SS / 06 300C SRT8


Edited by someotherguy on 08-05-22 09:46 AM. Reason for edit: mistaken a real person for a bot!!

 
pvfjr 
Newbie
Posts: 4

Reg: 08-02-22
08-04-22 03:33 PM - Post#2845454    
    In response to someotherguy

I'm not a spam bot, though. I'm on a ton of forums under the name pvfjr, including a GMC motorhome forum with tmsnyder. I'm not sure why my post was deleted and changed to an emoji. It was meant to elicit a response from tmsnyder, since I knew his plans had changed after the last post he gave. I dug this up by accident looking for Caddy swap info regarding my own GMC motorhome.



 
pvfjr 
Newbie
Posts: 4

Reg: 08-02-22
08-04-22 03:38 PM - Post#2845456    
    In response to someotherguy

  • someotherguy Said:


The one thing that really caught my attention was that the body is aluminum. For some reason I was thinking they were fiberglass, but I was wrong.




Also, you're not wrong about the body. They have a lot of SMC fiberglass, similar to Corvettes. Any body part with compound curves is SMC. So the front nose, wheel openings, back end, hatch doors, etc are all fiberglass. The aluminum skin is the straight parts (2.5 dimensional as some would call it), from the belt line up and over the roof.

If you want to see how some of the body parts and fiberglass go together, check out my build thread where I reconstruct a front-end damaged coach from an insurance auction:
https://www.gmcmotorhome.org/threads/the-ferrigno- familys-1975-gmc-glenbroo k.342/




 
gchemist 
Member #271 Senior Chevytalk Moderator
Posts: 25768
gchemist
Loc: Austin, TX 78748
Reg: 05-09-00
08-04-22 04:58 PM - Post#2845458    
    In response to pvfjr

  • pvfjr Said:
I'm not a spam bot, though. I'm on a ton of forums under the name pvfjr, including a GMC motorhome forum with tmsnyder. I'm not sure why my post was deleted and changed to an emoji. It was meant to elicit a response from tmsnyder, since I knew his plans had changed after the last post he gave. I dug this up by accident looking for Caddy swap info regarding my own GMC motorhome.


My apologies. Such a long post was reported as spam. We see it often. Long posts by new users get flagged. A copy was not saved or I would repost it.

Welcome to the site. Please contribute with your experience and knowledge. I look forward to reading new information.

'83 Silverardo XST - ZZ4 powered
'95 Jimmy SLT (Bought @131,814)
'96 GMC Jimmy LS Ret. @236651 miles
'08 GMC Acadia 3.6L SLE


 
someotherguy 
Senior Moderator
Posts: 29600
someotherguy
Loc: Texas
Reg: 08-01-03
08-04-22 05:17 PM - Post#2845461    
    In response to pvfjr

  • pvfjr Said:
I'm not a spam bot, though. I'm on a ton of forums under the name pvfjr, including a GMC motorhome forum with tmsnyder. I'm not sure why my post was deleted and changed to an emoji. It was meant to elicit a response from tmsnyder, since I knew his plans had changed after the last post he gave. I dug this up by accident looking for Caddy swap info regarding my own GMC motorhome.


My apologies then, too! Usually an odd response from a first time poster on a years-old thread tends to be a spam bot decoy message in the works. I'm the one that reported it.. so again, my apologies.

Richard

06 Silverado ISS / 06 Silverado SS / 06 300C SRT8


 
pvfjr 
Newbie
Posts: 4

Reg: 08-02-22
08-05-22 09:08 AM - Post#2845495    
    In response to someotherguy

No worries, I knew I was digging up an old thread in odd fashion. I've lurked here for years and just never bothered to register, but a chance to hassle someone I know from another forum was irresistible.

It looks like mikethebike's post got nixed too though? It's quoted in full though, so nothing lost there either.

Mine wasn't long, just a sentence or two. I believe it was something to the effect of alluding that Todd was long overdue for an update. His final post of "not buying a GMC" isn't what ultimately happened in the long run. I did a similar thing, bought a cheap P30 moho until I could get my hands on a GMC at a good price.



Edited by pvfjr on 08-05-22 09:10 AM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
someotherguy 
Senior Moderator
Posts: 29600
someotherguy
Loc: Texas
Reg: 08-01-03
08-05-22 09:49 AM - Post#2845497    
    In response to pvfjr

  • pvfjr Said:
No worries, I knew I was digging up an old thread in odd fashion. I've lurked here for years and just never bothered to register, but a chance to hassle someone I know from another forum was irresistible.

It looks like mikethebike's post got nixed too though? It's quoted in full though, so nothing lost there either.

Mine wasn't long, just a sentence or two. I believe it was something to the effect of alluding that Todd was long overdue for an update. His final post of "not buying a GMC" isn't what ultimately happened in the long run. I did a similar thing, bought a cheap P30 moho until I could get my hands on a GMC at a good price.


Yep, in that case I'm glad I quoted Mike's post in full! Not sure if it had got reported somehow or just caught in the mix. It's a lot of great info and I'm sure useful for anyone interested in these unique vehicles.

Richard


06 Silverado ISS / 06 Silverado SS / 06 300C SRT8


 
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