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I notice that some really like the bathroom in the back. What are the advantages to that? it seems to me that having the bedroom back there would be better so that it would be accessible to all during the night and allow for a queen bed to be in the back.
1984 28' Regal P30
It all depends on your planned uses for an RV, and how many people you will typically have sleeping in there. We have our queen bed in the back, and bathroom in front of that. Like you said it allow us and the kids (who sleep up front on the jackknife sofa) to use the bathroom without trudging through each others' sleeping areas.
Rear baths are often located there for space-saving purposes on smaller rigs, that don't usually have a separate bedroom. Or you may see a corner rear bath, with a full bed in the other corner. Again a space saver - you lose the "walk around" aspect of the rear bed, but that doesn't matter to everyone.
|First Month Member|
You guys have both pretty hit it in the ten ring, at least from our experience.
There is no doubt that a rear bath is a very efficient use of space, so could be a major advantage in a coach shorter than 28 or 30 ft. There seem to be a lot of 28 ft rear bath coaches. A rear bath coach also must have twin beds, which also save some space.
There are a number of drawbacks to a rear bath.
1. Guests must pass through the bedroom to use the john. This is not good for those trying to sleep. Sometimes, out of consideration for the bedroom occupant, a guest will be reluctant to use the john, and will compromise his own sleep as a result.
2. The coach does not have the large rear window for light, view and backing. This lack is particularly onerous when launching a boat. Launching a narrow boat without a back window is like taxiing the Spirit of Saint Louis. That is, you end up making a series of S turns, correcting as soon as you see the boat. The larger rear window also makes the rear view mirror more useful, particularly for backing a boat down a narrow ramp.
We usually camp where there are lovely views, so we would never have a small or absent rear window. Having a bedroom with big windows on three sides is just wonderful in and of itself, and also contributes to the general airiness and brightness of the entire coach. We use a Fresnel stick-on in the lower part of the rear window, and the view from the living room can be stunning at times, particularly at sunset if aimed that way. We feel much less closed-in with a rear bedroom with the big windows Barth used.
3. With a rear bath, the black tank is back there, too, which can affect handling if it is full and the roads are twisty. When this is combined with a motorcycle on the hitch or a trailer, it gets magnified. We have found that the farther up the mountain, the fewer dump stations there are. We often leave a dump-less site with a full tank, so this is an issue. This will depend on your camping style, though.
4. Since the black tank is back there, the dump plumbing must be back there. This makes it vulnerable to damage from driveway dips and rough country camping. Again, this depends on your camping style, but driveways and parking lot entrances can not be anticipated.
5. The rear bath necessitates twin beds in the bedroom. This, alone, may be good or bad, depending on each individual couple. For us, it is bad. We prefer a double bed for a few reasons other than the obvious.
1. The second most obvious advantage of a double bed is that it can easily be a queen-sized bed. There is no practical size upgrade with twins in an RV.
2. In sub-freezing weather, a double bed not only lets us keep each other warm, but it keeps us away from the wall, which is very cold, particularly in a metal-skinned and metal-framed coach.
3. In winter, a double bed has only half the opportunities for cold air to sneak in under the covers from the side, unless you use a sleeping bag.
4. Again, in winter, a double bed allows the use of a Travasak (which we heartily recommend) or a double sleeping bag. These devices cut the opportunities for cold air to sneak in from the side to zero. They also completely eliminate any blanket-stealing.
5. In Summer, sleeping on one bed allows our hallway-mounted Endless Breeze to cool both of us on hot nights
6. There is about three times more storage under a double bed than two singles. I know, it doesn't work out for those who took Solid Geometry in High School, but that is how it seems to both of us. When I converted our bedroom to a double bed from twins, I incorporated a lift-up bed top with air spring assist. Our spare tire is even under the bed. By removing one panel, it can be rolled out, rather than the obvious lifting, which is beyond my surgically-damaged back's capabilities.
7. A double bed can incorporate a slide-in doghouse cavity for a large ice chest. This is the first RV in 40 years of ownership where the ice chest was big enough, well-insulated enough and completely out of the way. Those of you who appreciate having beer in a bed of ice will really appreciate this.
8. FWIW, our dog requires a bedtime cuddle on a double bed between us. That convinces him that he is loved, ensuring good behavior and delightful company for the next 24 hours. He was not as happy and well-adjusted when we had twin beds.
9 A double bed allows a nightstand on each side. This is useful if you have a cat that requires that she sleep on a heating pad on a nightstand. If you use a CPAP, a nightstand is a good place for it.
Twin beds do not allow nightstands.
10. A double bed, with its access to both sides, is easier to make in the morning.
11. The space on either side of a double bed can be used for temporary storage of stuff without it looking like temporary storage of junk unless you go way back and peek. When we head out on a long trip, our Barth looks as fully-packed as the U Boat in Das Boot.
The advantages of twin beds that I see are:
1. A rear bath is space-efficient, which can be important in shorter coaches.
2. Twin beds are space-efficient, since there is no space used at the foot of the bed.
3. Sleeping apart is good if one partner wakes the other a lot, either by snoring, sleeping habits or getting up earlier or often. If one retires earlier in the evening, twins can also be better.
4. Despite the winter sleeping advantages of a double bed, a midships bedroom has only two outside walls, instead of three. This would make it a little warmer. This advantage would not apply to rear twins, however.
I am sure others will think of more.
Our Barth came with twin rear beds, side bath.
We gave the twin beds a fair try, and it was two years before I gutted the bedroom and made the new bed, water tank, replumbed, etc. We have also had a corner bed, a jacknife bed, and a dinette bed.
I guess you know where we stand.
84 30T PeeThirty-Something, 502 powered
Bill, thanks for the list, it helps my thoughts. One of the points you brought up about launching a boat is one I have dealt with both with boat and farm trailers. I always added a hitch plate to my front end on both trucks and tractors. When I had a slide-in camper with a boat on the back there was no way I wanted to deal with the launch ramp attention I would get otherwise. The front hitch allows you to prep the boat on the level, hitch to the front and drive it into the water. Another advantage is that when retrieving your drivers are back on the highground away from the slippery slimy goo often near the water's edge.
The front hitch need not be as capable as the rear hitch, sturdy and safe yes but it is not a highway class towing requirement.
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|First Month Member|
Yeah, they work well. When I had a narrow boat, I did that on all my tow vehicles. It is not only handy on boat ramps, but it really improves accuracy. At one house, that was the only way I could get the boat in or out of its parking spot. I can thread a needle with a front hitch. At the airline, all our push tractors had front hitches.
I found it handy to attach my water ski flag to the left fender of the trailer so that I could see it in the mirror all the time as I backed straight down the ramp. As a side note, my last few boats were not as narrow, and I could see the trailer fender in the mirror before the S-turn got too radical, so it worked pretty well, although the entertainment value was seriously diminished.
It's funny you mention tractors. I used to fish at a place where a nearby farmer launched his boat with a tractor. The hay fork on the boom in front had a hitch ball on it. He drove it from the farm to the launch site that way. Wish I had taken a picture.
84 30T PeeThirty-Something, 502 powered
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