This is another couple that I follow on YouTube, the Tillman’s. They have a channel called This Little Adventure.
They are a family of four living out of a renovated 1999 Damon Intruder. Toni and Karlton run a photography business out of their coach — their website is here — and they clearly have a great eye for design.
The interior of this 18-year old coach looks amazing!
They cut a promo video of their coach which you can see here:
And, if you want an extended tour of their coach with Toni and Karlton as your hosts, you can watch it here:
I admire them. I’m not sure how they live full-time in a coach with five kids and still maintain their sanity.
They travel in a 22-year old Foretravel.
New, these coaches sell for about $1.4 million USD. Give or take a few dollars.
Trent recently posted a video about their coach basically asking how well a 22-year luxury coach holds up. An interesting take on how their family lives full-time in an old coach.
They seem like a very nice couple, the kind of folks I would love to meet on the road.
On their about page, they make the following statement:
We’re here to dispel a big myth. There’s a myth that the RV life is only for retired folks, but that’s simply not true. Not anymore. These days, RVing is for couples, singles and families. RVing is for anyone who has ever dreamed about seeing the country (or world) up close, from one end to the other, one mile at a time.
Which led them, after a few years, to create the RV Success School.
I understand their situation. They love the RV lifestyle and they are not retired. Although it is possible to work remotely while traveling, I’m sure it comes with its own set of challenges. And certainly, it led Marc to finally quit his job after a few years of working while on the road.
There are many people attempting to monetize their websites and their YouTube channels. In a way, it is a spin on the book business: create good content, bring in a pool of followers and then try and sell a smaller number of followers on a subset of content.
It can’t be easy to sell an online education program with so much free content on the web. I wish them well.
For most of us, we have a season of life where we spend our days providing for our families and setting some money aside for the future. A time arrives where it is obvious that there may be other dreams to follow. Retirement is usually when dreams like traveling full-time in an RV can be realized.
Some chase their dreams early.
But it is never free.
He did a segment on why someone should consider a used Prevost over a new Class A. Some interesting observations on the differences in engineering philosophy.
Of course, highlighting the 2 million mile design specification of a Prevost bus is a testament to the lifespan of the brand. Although I do see many older Class A motorhomes still on the road even after 15 or 20 years.
But I have not come across any specifics comparing the lifespan of a Prevost vs a quality Class A coach. Nor have I come across any specifics on the total cost of ownership over the long-term, say 20 years of ownership.
My suspicion is that the Class A coaches would not hold up as well in terms of depreciation over time. Whether the cost of operating the coach including depreciation equals out over time between the two is really a guess.
Interesting discussion though. We have given some thought as to whether we will continue in a Class A coach or trade for a used Prevost sometime in the future.
Rock Safaris. They take care of getting you there.
If you are a musician and your label is not quite ready to provide you with your own bus, well, you can rent a 9-12 bunk Prevost Entertainer Coach from Rock Safaris.
A Prevost Entertainer Coach?
The Prevost X3-45 VIP Entertainer is designed to suit the demanding and rigorous needs of traveling entertainers and their crews. The unmatched Prevost ride comfort is the pinnacle attribute, providing headliner acts with unparalleled stability for sound sleep and serene lounging while on the move.
Rates are between $375 and $1,110 USD per day. Driver rates are around $250 per day. Add in fuel, 13 cents per mile surcharge and you have maybe $10,000 – 15,000 per week to run a band in a sleeper coach.
What got me here?
This fellow’s YouTube video on what life is like on the road as a touring musician (and yes, he does travel in an Entertainer Coach).
I follow Mike’s blog, The Good, The Bad and the RV. He bought a brand new 2015 Newmar Dutch Star and only a year or so later he had traded it in for a 2016 Newmar Essex.
I’m not sure what motivated his decision to change coaches so quickly. He must have taken quite a hit on the depreciation cost of the Dutch Star even with a trade-in on a coach that was sitting on a dealer’s lot.
He did post about some of the issues he had in the first few months with the Dutch Star:
Our brand new Newmar Dutch Star had the following problems, which took months to fix:
- The passenger seat had a spring poking out of it (this was noticed pre-purchase and the salesman assured us it was a simple seat replacement. It ended up taking 2 months because Newmar refused to replace the seat)
- Both the mid and aft floor heat switches randomly turn off after being on a short time (sometimes as short as 30 seconds)
- The Oasis burner turns on and off constantly, forever. The burner starts up, runs for 1 second, and then shuts off. 5-10 seconds later it repeats this…over and over until I turn the burner switch off.
- The rear, drivers side leveler jack left a large puddle of hydraulic fluid when I last retracted it
- The USB port in the dash is not working
- The fresh water hose has developed blisters between the inner and outer layers and now leaks
- The passenger sofa bottom fell off when putting the slide out and will not reattach
- Windshield wiper fluid does not dispense when the button on the steering wheel is pressed
- When playing DVD audio through the AV receiver (for surround sound), the sound cuts out
- The sun shade on the passenger window no longer retracts
- The night shade on the drivers window is coming down askew and sliding towards the front of the coach. It used to come down straight, but now, when unrolling, it ends up 3-4 inches away from where it started.
- The front leveler jacks sound horrible when extending. Having owned this same system in another coach, this sound doesn’t seem normal.
- The kitchen faucet is overly loose
Right after buying this unit, we took this coach on a two week trip. It then sat at the dealership for over 2 months! We then took it on a one month trip. Problems on the list still were not fixed so it went back to the dealer for almost another month. So the unit spent 3 of the first 5 months at the shop.
We have had our fair share of issues as well. This is our list.
First, the warranty punch list after the first few months of operating the coach:
- Kitchen Sink Leak: drain pipe leaks where drain meets down pipe immediately underneath the sink.
- Loose Fabric Trim: fabric trim by pantry drawer leading into bedroom has come loose in a couple of areas.
- Cracked Floor Tile: cracked floor tile driver side behind the recliner that is closest to the kitchen galley.
- MCD Day/Night Shades: MCD Day/Night Shades over dining area appear to require reprogramming. Day shade inoperative over main dining area window and night shades over main dining area window and small dining area window out of synch.
- Winegard Rayzar Digital TV Antenna: Unit is producing an E3 error during operation (motor movement error).
- Sofa Bed Latch: Latch for inflating sofa bed doesn’t stay closed when inflating.
- Passenger Side Basement Door: When door side slideout is open, first basement door rubs bottom of slideout (door out of alignment).
- Front Wheel Vibration: At highway speed, roughly 100km and above, front exhibits a vibration that is characteristic of unbalanced wheels.
- Driver Side Fuel Cover: Missing clearcoat
- Engine fault light triggered by outdate engine firmware
- Driver side tire bulge
We had a couple of recalls including the infamous “your coach could catch fire” recall:
- 467 RSB – Recall 16V 826: Power Steering Fluid Leak (potential fire hazard)
- 472 TSB – Slideout Motor Mounting Bolts (under-torqued). We heard loose mounting bolts on both front slideouts (Full Wall Slideout and Off Driver Slideout) while driving the coach.
And, since then, a few other items which have not been resolved yet:
- Side radiator lower grill almost disconnected from body of coach
- Oasis hot water heater pump failure
- Full wall slideout uneven — literally rises up a quarter inch or so after slides are deployed
- Levelling jack leaking hydraulic fluid
Along with a few more new recalls that will have to be resolved:
- 483 RSB – Recall 17V 420: Driver Passenger Shade
- 486 TSB – MCD Remote Shade Motor Replacement
- 488 RSB – Recall 17V 497: Battery Cable May Rub Against Frame (another potential fire hazard)
- 493 PIB – Freightliner Lightbar: instrument panel odometer value may reset and no match the engine ECU odometer value
Well. Quite the list for such an expensive coach.
And, like Mike, our coach has to go to the dealer for an extended stay. Typically 3 to 4 weeks. Which isn’t an issue now since I haven’t retired yet. But when we plan to be in the States for about 6 months of the year, I don’t want to have the coach sitting at some dealer for a month or two.
We certainly expected some issues with our new coach. And given Newmar’s reputation as being one of the better manufacturers, it does seem a bit troubling to run into so many issues after only a few thousand miles on the chassis.
We hope to run the coach for many more years.
I hope this list doesn’t get much longer.
If you haven’t seen it before, take a look at the following video:
Now that is a motorhome.
But I was curious about the backstory. Who built this machine?
Turns out that it was built by Ron Anderson.
According to Ron’s LinkedIn profile:
We build multi-tasking vehicles for multi-tasking companies and people. ALL sizes and shapes. We specialize in providing the only 1200 Square foot portable trailer in the world. We own the patent to this product and have spent the past 20 years perfecting a production unit. Uses are limitless as our design expertise is not limited. Outside the box hardly describes our company, more like outside the planet fits much better. We routinely see what others cannot seem to grasp until about 2 years after we develop the product. We have dozens of examples of this to show you. Our company has led the industry for over 25 years. Our goal is to get the world to understand it’s a 1200 Square foot, 3 story trailer that can have any interior you want, and set up with one person in as little as 10 minutes. So what ever will fit in 1200 square feet, will fit inside this trailer. Your product can go to the customers not the other way around. This is your, on location Portable office or your on location trailer or anything else you want it to be.
From 1990 to 2001, Ron had a business called Star Trax Celebrity Coaches. The company was a luxury custom coach builder and he had an incredible list of clients including Vin Diesel, Brad Pitt, Jim Carrey, Denzel Washington, Harrison Ford, Adam Sandler, Sylvester Stallone, Jennifer Lopez, Former President Bill Clinton amongst many others.
He took a break for a year or so to sail around the world and then returned to start a new company called Anderson Mobile Estates.
Here is a video outlining the new class of RV product:
I had never heard of his company before nor had I heard about Star Trax Celebrity Coaches. I just assumed that the A-list actors were buying coaches from builders like Marathon, Liberty and Millenium.
Filed under #moneynoobject.
I had a few lingering questions after I made the decision to retire in July of 2018. I posted about whether we will have enough money in retirement here and whether we will be happy in retirement here.
The last lingering question is whether we will be healthy in retirement.
And healthy must include the following factors: physical, emotional and spiritual.
What you see pictured above is a Wahoo Kickr Snap. I use it in my pain cave which I describe in this video:
This is how I choose to maintain my physical fitness. And it really does not matter what form of physical activity. Being healthy, particularly as we age, is all about movement. Keep moving. Walking. Running. Cycling. Skating. Whatever inspires you to keep moving.
Although not as convenient in a motorhome, I will be setting up a similar pain cave for my regular workouts. Hopefully, we will be in good weather most of the time and I will be able to ride outside.
To be healthy from a physical perspective means regular exercise and good nutrition. Both are completely under our control. The onset of a critical illness is often outside our control.
My life expectancy is 81 years. And, if I make it past age 65, I have better than 50% chance of making it to 80.
The best strategy is to keep as active as possible right up until the very end. And retirement provides all sorts of opportunities to keep active.
The emotional side is my development opportunity. Ensuring that I have a purpose and mission in my retirement years will be a critical component to emotional health. As will social interactions and relationships. I am not as concerned about the latter as we have met so many wonderful people in our travels with our motorcoach.
Lorraine and I enjoy a strong faith and we will continue to develop ourselves in our retirement years.
What I am learning for this part of retirement?
- Keep physically and mentally active
- Stay connected with family, friends and community
- Keep eating a healthy diet
- Volunteer to help maintain health and social contacts
- Set new goals and maintain a sense of purpose
- Plan for the weeks and months ahead to give yourself targets and things to look forward to