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Old 11-08-2013, 01:30 PM   #1
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Winnebago/Itasca 40U

We have been in our Meridian since the end of May. We are drydocking in my in-laws driveway. Today my wife cooked a turkey breast for two hours in the convection oven. The genset DID NOT run the entire time! The house battery was still reading 12.3V when the cooking finished!

I am amazed at how solid this coach electrical systems are. We have been in several different scenarios as we have travel the east coast and on into the deep south. Our stop in Gaffney, SC at Freightliner was well worth the money. We had the 30K mile chassis inspection done about 10K early just because we were new to the coach and would not be back near SC for a few years. We are heading to the west coast and will volunteer and be near the grandchildren. Best of both worlds.

Our coach options are not all the best. We do have the residential refrigerator and love it, but not the dishwasher. The stacked washer and dryer are great but we don't have the FOB operated basement locks. Our floor is vinyl tiles. Functional and easy to clean. Buying used, we have what was ordered when new. We did add a Directv Winegard dish. Not certain that was a wise move.

In all we are so blessed. I hope we are not the unusual and that all of the 40U owners are having as great an experience as we are.

My DW is thrilled with all of the storage space in the living quarters and I am thrilled with all of the basement storage area for my tools and our hobbies. The Auto Start genset works great and even Melissa has little trouble understanding and running the systems.

My only learning curve that took a bit of training was tight turns. The wheelbase is longer by about 9" and a 60 deg cut over the 55 deg cut of my last coach has taken some getting used to.

Please post your experiences, good and bad. I hope others are as curious as I am as to whether mine are normal or unusual.

Happy trails to all,
Rick
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Old 11-09-2013, 07:54 AM   #2
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We LOVE our Journey 40U, we too have the Residential fridge, washer dryer & outside entertainment center. DW loves the way the "L" shaped couch defines a definite Living Room, and Kitchen area (1 of here wants). In Oct we were camping in Ohio and there was a Spy Apple tree there. Picked 4 large plastic grocery bags of apples and the DW did them up (while camping) for pies, and froze them (love that residential fridge). I enjoy setting out side listening to my Big Band music and reading, so the outside entertainment center is MINE!! We can't wait for the DW to retire too so that we can take off FULL TIME.
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Old 11-09-2013, 07:55 AM   #3
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Those 40U's are beautiful coaches ....
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Old 11-09-2013, 03:58 PM   #4
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We love our 40U as well. Have had some trouble with the passenger side front slide-it's the Lippert/Schwintek mechanism, but hopefully it's corrected now. Absolutely love the fireplace!!!
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Old 11-09-2013, 05:00 PM   #5
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X2 on the fireplace also. Great to take the chill off in the AM and not having to hear the heat pump running. Also the DW like the looks of it on at night while watching TV.
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Old 11-09-2013, 08:34 PM   #6
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The first time my DW walked in to the sister ship to yours she knew it was what she wanted 2011 Journey 40U. We ended up with the 2013 42e. A few differences but alot of the coach is the same or similiar. No major problems, seems to be built well. Glad you are enjoying your Meridian.
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Old 11-11-2013, 01:41 PM   #7
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Hi folks,
We are dealing on a new 2013 Journey 42E. I am a little nervous about buying this coach because I haven't talked to another 42E owner. I am moving up from our 2013 Thor Challenger 37DT. The 42E is bigger, gas to diesel 5 ft. longer etc.
I am hoping to communicate with people who bought these units.
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Old 11-11-2013, 01:48 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigdonedmon View Post
Hi folks, We are dealing on a new 2013 Journey 42E. I am a little nervous about buying this coach because I haven't talked to another 42E owner. I am moving up from our 2013 Thor Challenger 37DT. The 42E is bigger, gas to diesel 5 ft. longer etc. I am hoping to communicate with people who bought these units.
You will not be disappointed....
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Old 11-12-2013, 12:21 PM   #9
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Bought used 2012 40U in June. It had 7,300 miles on it. Wife fell in love with floor plan but it did not have fireplace, she said was a MUST. Negotiated price with dealer and also got them to install fireplace to cinch the deal. Put on 6,000 miles since then with few problems. Needed to fix bedroom sliding door FYI there are two plastic clips that hold door on rollers. Turn them so metal pins come out of slots on door, Also had to take wood trim off top of door. The basemeny storage space is great and the slideout tray cannot be beat. Had a Tiffin gasser before and liked it but wanted a diesel and this floorplan.
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Old 11-13-2013, 08:42 AM   #10
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We bought ours with about 20K on it. I never considered the milage because of the Cummins/Allison/Freightliner combination.

Problems: Crown molding in livingroom is poorly installed and just looks bad. Will replace at some point. Had drain in back of freezer plug. Prevented drawer from closing properly and iced the bottom of the freezer compartment. We payed $100 to get it fixed.

The fix is simple. Take the drawer out and remove the back panel. Use a hair dryer to melt the ice blocking the drains. Blow low pressure air, 10 to 20 psi will do, in the drain holes. Put it all back together and you are good to go. Also the travel latch on the freezer was not installed correctly. I put a new screw and shims on it. All is well and DW LOVES the fridge.

The genset Auto Start has been invaluable. We have been forced to drydock because we were visiting family. The 12V system on this coach is rock solid. DW cooked a turkey breast for 2 hrs running the convection oven on the inverter. Four hours later the genset started to charge the house batteries! Rock solid.

The fireplace is great. Dawson, our Belgian Malinois, love the hearth. The heat isn't great but it is a good supplement on a cool morning and adds to the ambiance in the evening.

The heat pumps are unbelievably useful. I just finished a test. It was 25 Degs. when we got up. I had switched to LP during the night to heat the basement because it was 27 degs. and the heat pumps were still working fine. As far as I know we DO NOT have heat-strips in the units. The heat pumps were still working at 25 degs.. I did not think this was possible.

We just had one leg of our journey where we did not run the genset. I estimate we got about 9.6 mpg from Birmingham, AL to Monroe, LA. I was running around 66 to 67 mph.

Please tell me more of your bedroom door problem and fix. I could not see how to adjust it, as mine need a tweak.

Check your closet door latches. The screws came out of one yesterday. A rough road adventure was the cause and dumped all of the hanging close on the floor. I am thinking of cable tying a pole of some sort over the hangers and onto the closet pole. Some of the roads in TX can be like a Disney ride.

In all we love our coach. I hope this is our last one and that it will be with us for the next 15 or so years. I don't know how long I will be blessed with good health before or after that time.

Happy trails,
Rick
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Old 11-13-2013, 08:59 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigdonedmon View Post
Hi folks,
We are dealing on a new 2013 Journey 42E. I am a little nervous about buying this coach because I haven't talked to another 42E owner. I am moving up from our 2013 Thor Challenger 37DT. The 42E is bigger, gas to diesel 5 ft. longer etc.
I am hoping to communicate with people who bought these units.
If you don't like comfort, convenience, great features, reliability and ease of setup and storage you will hate the rig!

Your's is the big sister to mine. Here is what DW and I think of ours: in the park... To mention just a few emotions.
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Old 11-13-2013, 09:25 AM   #12
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One side note on the Journey 40U though. The gross weight on the rear axle is 20,000. Please weigh your units, I found mine 920lbs. over with very little extra loaded in the unit, we were loaded for 2 week vacations only, not full time. Has plenty of unused weight on the front axle though. Also verified the axle make and model with Freightliner, then went to the axle MFGR web site and they show my axle as a 19,000lb axle, go figure???
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Old 11-13-2013, 11:58 AM   #13
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Rick, If your bedroom sliding door is like mine there are two white plastic clips attached to the top of the door. They hold metal pins attached to the track rollers to slots that are on top of the door. The pins slide into the slots and then the white plastic clips wrap around the pins to hold them to the door. I took off moldind on bedroom side so I could turn plastic clips and get door back in slots, Door panels started to come unglued so I took door off reglued and put back up.
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Old 11-13-2013, 01:50 PM   #14
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We hav a 2013 Winnie Journey 40U.
The top corner of the mirrored close door started to come apart.
Couldn't figure out how to remove. Put glue in the corner and Blocked
up tight for about 12 hrs. Still holdin so far, good to know about the clips.
Thanks.
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Old 11-14-2013, 06:33 AM   #15
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Rick, If your bedroom sliding door is like mine there are two white plastic clips attached to the top of the door. They hold metal pins attached to the track rollers to slots that are on top of the door. The pins slide into the slots and then the white plastic clips wrap around the pins to hold them to the door. I took off moldind on bedroom side so I could turn plastic clips and get door back in slots, Door panels started to come unglued so I took door off reglued and put back up.
The top molding! Yea. That makes sense. Sounds like that door has had a rough life. Glad you could fix it.

Thanks for the info. Will get a better look at things in a few days. Helping brother-in-law rebuild kitchen in his house at the moment.

Happy trails,
Rick
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Old 11-14-2013, 06:46 AM   #16
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One side note on the Journey 40U though. The gross weight on the rear axle is 20,000. Please weigh your units, I found mine 920lbs. over with very little extra loaded in the unit, we were loaded for 2 week vacations only, not full time. Has plenty of unused weight on the front axle though. Also verified the axle make and model with Freightliner, then went to the axle MFGR web site and they show my axle as a 19,000lb axle, go figure???
We were just at Gaffney and had our weight done. The techs indicated no problems. We are loaded for life on the road. I don't know what to say about your caution.

Why did you present this question to Freightliner to begin with?

I did not realize that each custom chassis is designed with the buyer until we went on the factory tour in Gaffney. Winnebago specs the chassis and determines the components to be used. I believe they even pay for all of the parts before they are assembled in Gaffney, SC. So, as I understand it Winnebago is responsible for the axles, engine and components that Freightliner uses. They "simply" put the parts together so they will work as a unit. If there is a problem with the design is not Winnebago responsible if what I say is true?

Try contacting Winnebago with your information and concerns. I would like to know what their response is.
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Old 11-15-2013, 08:05 AM   #17
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The Journey doesn't have under the bed storage as I understand it. Itasca did put pistons on the bed platform and boxed it in for storage. I am certain this upgrade would be valuable to the Journey folks. If you are handy you can do this without much stress.

A maintenance issue I should mention is with the closet. All of the screws came loose on the door latches. One latch even came off. It might be a good idea for those reading this to take a peak behind the doors of the closet.

Happy trails,
Rick
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Old 11-15-2013, 11:25 PM   #18
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The Journey doesn't have under the bed storage as I understand it. Itasca did put pistons on the bed platform and boxed it in for storage. I am certain this upgrade would be valuable to the Journey folks. If you are handy you can do this without much stress.

A maintenance issue I should mention is with the closet. All of the screws came loose on the door latches. One latch even came off. It might be a good idea for those reading this to take a peak behind the doors of the closet.

Happy trails,
Rick
We have storage and pistons under the bed in our 11 Journey.

Ditto on the closet latches. 2 of ours broke before we noticed they were loose. It was easier to replace/tighten them and adjust the the door from inside the closet with the door closed; then I came out of the closet! Literally not figuratively. ;-)
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Old 11-16-2013, 06:34 AM   #19
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We have storage and pistons under the bed in our 11 Journey.

Ditto on the closet latches. 2 of ours broke before we noticed they were loose. It was easier to replace/tighten them and adjust the the door from inside the closet with the door closed; then I came out of the closet! Literally not figuratively. ;-)
The storage must be a option. I have never bought new so I have no idea what is available of options or what the process is like deciding what is going to be in a new coach.

About the closet? You must have resolved your issues successfully. You were able to come out. Does this mean your not in the dark any more?

I just had an issue with the cabinet over the galley sink. You might want to check this out. I should have taken pictures to post. The floor was dropping on the right side and center. Also the under panel had dropped in the corner to the top of the backsplash.

After getting the deck cover off I found some really poor construction and workmanship. I had to jack the poorly spliced floor members up and re secure them and add screws to the members on the right wall that kep the cabinet up and in place! The way the stringers are attached, even cut, makes no sense for good support. If this happens again I will rebuild the structure.

These cabinets are built to flex a bit because of the very nature of where they are used. But the way they are assembled makes no sense. I found large staples holding, splicing, the free ends of the supporting structure ends together in the center of the deck! Everything was butted together in the most critical load area!

DW just got up. Going to join her for coffee.

Happy trails and have a great day.
Rick
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Old 11-23-2013, 07:58 AM   #20
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Question about cold weather. This is our first time in cold weather with this coach. We are in the Dallas area and it has been raining and cold. Last night I found a leak in the bedroom slide cabinet. I lifted the front a bit and it is OK for the moment. (Will address it later.) The real concern is the sweet along the roof to wall seam all around the coach. Are others having this issue or do I have a unique problem?
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