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New Member - Considering an Oliver


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I am Gary and I'm in Connecticut...

I have never owned a travel trailer and now I am looking for a camper for my wife and son to use.   I am intrigued by the Oliver Elite II but have a couple of questions.  

First, I have been looking on the used market (which is obviously tiny) and I wonder why almost all the units I have seen for sale (or sold) are the twin bed model.  That seems odd, I would think that most people would go with the larger bed.   Am I missing something? Is there some problem with the bigger bed or something?

Second, is used and new price - I spoke with Oliver and found that, 1- I could not get a trailer unless I order now and wait until November or December to get the unit.  and 2 - they sell at retail, never a discount beyond a 10% discount on accessories up to a max limit.    Which brings me to used units. Obviously it would be great to have the trailer now, but I am seeing 2 or 3 year old models with asking prices appearing  to be less that 17-20% discount over a new unit (though NADA value is much much lower than that).  I like things that retain value, but that makes buying used to be much less desirable.   So my question is it going to be reasonable to try to get a used unit at close to the NADA value, or am I destined have to order and wait 6 months ?

I want to be able to use the unit in winter occasionally and my backup choice right now is probably  a Lance - which is totally  different from an  Oliver, obviously, but much more readily available.

Thanks!

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Hi Gary, welcome to the forum.  I’m sure you’ll get a number of answers to your questions.  Here are my thoughts...

We opted for the twin bed model because we didn’t want to be climbing over each other to get up in the middle of the night, the twin beds allow much easier access to the overhead storage over the beds on the sides and back and we like the nightstand.  The two seat dinette is just right for us, so the larger U-shaped table that converts to the big bed wasn’t something we needed.

Prices on used Olivers are high.  Supply and demand!  Lance makes a nice trailer and they make a lot of them.  Oliver makes a nicer trailer but not too many.  We’re in our 5th year with our Oliver and it is just as solid today as it was when we picked it up.  I’m sure it will be the same in 5 more years. Mike

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Mike and Carol | Fair Oaks Ranch, TX | 2016 Elite II #135 | 2020 Ram 2500 Laramie 6.7L Cummins Diesel

ALAZARCACOFLGAIDILKSKYLAMDMSMOMTNENVNMNYNCNDOHOKSCSDTNTXUTVAWVWYsm.jpg

 

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Gary,

My wife and I did a ton of research before purchasing a new Oliver which we will pick up in a month.  We looked at Bigfoot and Lance and were very impressed with those trailers but once we took the Oliver factory tour, our minds were made.  The Oliver is at another level with the quality build.  You will find a few problems with Bigfoot and Lance that are related to other RV's with wood interiors.  Leak problems and other irritating issues are far less in the Oliver.  

We looked real hard at the single bed but the issues that Mike and Carol mentioned were our thoughts exactly.  The twin beds were much more versatile and you can always make some modifications like ones shown on this forum.  These are some very wise and crafty owners who can modify their Ollie to fit their desires.

We also looked on the forum at many of the used campers which were some very good deals.  At the price of a used versus a brand new we made the decision to buy new figuring it would be our last camper purchase.   I do not think you can go wrong with either choice.  Oliver still have issues. but almost all of them are with RV appliances which cannot be avoided.  The Ollie will be as sound in 10 years as the year you purchase, that is why the resale prices stay high.

Good luck with your search and I recommend the tour.  

Erv

Erv & Sherry  Hull # 650

2020 Tundra SR5 Crewcab 4X4

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What they said. 
 

I’d only add that it’s a fairly easy task to convert a twin to a standard and vice versa. 

Snowball • 256 • 2018 Ford Raptor

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Thanks all!  
 

Has  anyone here actually done the Twin to Single bed conversion ?  It would be nice to see some pics or to understand what is involved.  If that is manageable, then my only decision will be trading off space and layout flexibility of a traditional trailer for the quality of the Oliver.   I am very drawn to the Marine look and cleanliness of Oliver, being a boat owner for many years!  

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Posted (edited)

Several members have converted their original configuration.  Andrew K talks about changing his out to a modified twin in this thread, with many photos.

 

A 2019 post, with links to several older posts:

Brief how to discussion, here:

Sherry

 

Edited by SeaDawg
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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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We have the standard unit, 2017 hull #211. In a previous life we had owned a Scamp, and found that we seldom took it out of the bed configuration, being there is just the two of us. That being said, we were camping at a central spot and two other couples joined us with their SOBs (some other brand). As was typical we shared a 'potluck/buffet' evening meal, but as was also typical it started to rain. Guess which was the only unit that could seat six? True that those seated at the back couldn't get out quickly, but evidently they were comfortable. Two bottles of wine and 2 1/2 hours passed without complaints. And to reset to a bed was a 5 minute task. 

Normally we use a double opened sleeping bag as a base, and individual afghans as tops. That way we do not disturb the other if we have to slide out. Having the dinette convert for a grandchild guest is a bonus too.

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Hi Gary, I don't have an exact figure, but anecdotally about 90% of the Ollies sold have two beds. I refuse to call them Twin Beds because they are not - they are narrow bunk-sized (30" wide) and the Oliver advertising is very deceptive. Having lived with two, I would never consider going to a single. Lots of reasons..... one being if you ever camp with somebody who is not your spouse or dog, you can let them sleep in the second bed and not have to use the dinette area, which is marginal at best.

Resale value: NADA did not even list Olivers when I bought mine in 2017. Nobody had any idea of their value - I saw a one year old well-specced LEII listed by a dealer in WA for $58,000.... , and owners could ask whatever they felt like asking. Of the many Classified sales here, I do not recall a single one where the seller came back and listed a selling price. So used pricing - what the trailers actually SOLD for - remains very much a mystery. 

Oliver will stand behind these trailers, better than almost any other RV company, but the warranty specifically tells us that it is non-transferrable. This is something to think about if, like me, you live 2500 miles away and can't quickly buzz by the factory for a repair job. They are much more likely to do an out-of-warranty favor for you as an Oliver Family Member, if you take the trailer to them. Would I buy a used one, even a super nice, well modified, pristine, always garaged trailer with a solid written service record? Yep, you betcha, without hesitation, but only after a thorough professional inspection.

Would I buy the average unit, always stored outdoors, corroded parts, not well maintained? Nope, no way. Too many unknowns, too many possible expenses. IMHO of course! They are, after all, still RVs, and they need to be well cared for to maintain their resale value.

John Davies

Spokane WA

 

 

 

Edited by John E Davies

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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We purchased a used 2017 LEII, hull #193 In January 2018.  It was a standard model when we purchased it and the OTT service department converted to a twin bed for us.

My wife would not have agreed to a twin model without camping in it if we had ordered new.  But after one camping trip we both realized that making the bed was a major inconvenience and camping should be fun.  If you haven’t tried to make a bed with one side against a wall, you should because the standard bed is against three walls.  The bed area is 77" long and 80" wide and the inside of the trailer is 178" long and 80" wide not including the bath area.  So the standard bed occupies about 40% of the floor plan when in the sleeping mode.  And it makes access to the upper storage area’s difficult even in the table mode.  
So we tried sleeping on the couches/benches during our next 6 months of usage.  I am 6' and Krunch claims to be 5', but she is rounding up.  The benches worked fine for her and she also tried the dinette as we experimented with different options.  Our final arrangement was me sleeping across the back bench and she used the street side bench.  Then each morning we converted back to benches.

Since we generally camp solo and didn’t need the large table, we started leaving it at home.  Then we started leaving some of the cushions behind because anything we couldn’t use for sleeping and sitting was in the way.  
And we decided the twin bed would better suit our needs.

Then we talked to the service department and we dropped the trailer off on our way to Illinois for a family reunion and picked it up on the way home 5 days later.  We are very pleased with our decision.  
AndrewK's self conversion turned out very well and his offer to help anyone interested has benefited others, so that is another option.

Mossey

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Mike and Krunch   Lutz, FL   LEII #193 “the dog house”

 

 

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We went with the "standard" one bed model.  We don't want to sleep separate.  Another reason is the standard bed is longer (sleeping across the trailer) and I need the room to stretch out.  We use a "full" size topper so I am trying to figure out some creative ways to either allow about 24" of the aisle to be reclaimed or something else.  For now the last 24" of the oliver is where our air filter and dehumidifier live.  The area under the bed is where we store some extra stuff, but it's not like we are out of room in any of the other storage compartments either.  One thought I've had is to put the truck freezer we are looking at buying under the bed to avoid the "how to power it?" when we reach camp.  It is nice to be able to convert the space to a dining table when there are amazing views to the rear of the trailer - we seated 3 kids +3 adults there which might be more difficult in the twin.




 

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2019 LE2 #529.   Standard Floorplan.

2020 GMC Sierra 2500 Duramax

 

 

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Wow - thanks for all the great information!  I guess I can look at those twin bed models.

Of course it is a good point about service and needing to travel to Tennessee for that.  It is a long way from Connecticut!

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