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  #1  
Old 05-19-2010
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WestySKPs WestySKPs is offline
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Default Newer vs Vintage Handling

Hi All,

Is the road handling of the newer, larger, heavier coaches better than vintage, smaller, lighter coaches? When did Bluebird add ABS and does it make a difference?

Thanks again for the info,

MnM
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1990 WLWB - "The TARDIS"
2008 Subaru Outback 2.5XT
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Old 05-19-2010
Robert Britton Robert Britton is offline
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Well I think I can give some insight on this question; I currently own a 04 M380, before that I had an 87FC.

Both coaches drive very well, my 87 was smaller and easy to maneuver in the campgrounds. The M380 has a turning radius very similar to the FC but you do notice the extra wheelbase when maneuvering in tight situations, but it’s not a big difference.

Out on the open road the M380 is very nice…it’s hard to beat. Part of the enjoyment of driving it is not just the way it handles but the comfort level…it’s just more comfortable than the 87. With that said; I think the 87 was less affected by high winds and wind gust. Both of these coaches are a pleasure to drive and I don’t think I can fairly say I would pick one over the other based just on the way they drive down the open highway.

I do allot of driving in the mountains and this is where the M380 shines. I handles better on the twisty roads, has more power for the long climbs, and the engine brake keeps things under control on the decent. The 87 has a transmission retarder that does a great job slowing the coach but on long descents you really have to manage the heat as the transmission will heat up fast.

I can tell you that at the end of long day of driving I am not as tired driving the M380, as where the 87 did tire me out. In fact the M380 drives itself, you just steer. The 87FC there is just more driver input in all aspects of driving …it’s not a bad thing but at the end of the day you are more fatigued.

The M380 is a nice looking coach, but it does not attract attention like the 87FC. The 87 takes longer to set up in the campground as everyone in the area takes turns coming over to talk about the coach. In my opinion there will never be a coach that can beat those classic lines and good looks of the older Bluebirds.

So bottom line it just depends on what you looking for and how you’re going to use it. I think if you walked through a few coaches and took a few test drives you would be able to narrow down your personnel preference…I’m not sure when the ABS came into play.
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  #3  
Old 05-19-2010
bubblerboy64 bubblerboy64 is offline
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I owned a real vintage BB a 1973 FC and now a 1987. The PT is much easier to handle. Question is was it the difference in the year, make and model or is it just the difference one bird to the next and the wear and tear of being 14 years older. I don't know. One of the fellows told me he had the opportunity to drive a new Bounder (Fleetwood) and he felt it handled very poorly. He said his vintage bird was much better. So don't know if any of this helps or not but it's my experience limited as it is.
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  #4  
Old 05-19-2010
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The early birds were spring suspention, Pt's have the tag, all different.
Stick with air suspension .
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Old 05-19-2010
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bwinter1946 bwinter1946 is offline
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Anti-Lock Brakes.

According to the Vintage Birds website history section.

The first time anti-lock brakes are mentioned is the 1994 and up BMC, 1998 and up LX, and the 2000 and up LXI.

I have no idea if the website info is correct but others more knowledgeable will correct this where it is wrong.

http://www.vintagebirds.com/
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  #6  
Old 05-19-2010
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Slightly Off topic: Raise your hand if you have ever locked up the brakes in your 'Bird of any vintage. I mean actually made skid marks.

(my hand remains at my side)
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  #7  
Old 05-19-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Esmi View Post
Slightly Off topic: Raise your hand if you have ever locked up the brakes in your 'Bird of any vintage. I mean actually made skid marks.

(my hand remains at my side)


And all this time I thought it was just my coach that had weak brakes.
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(and the required Wanderlodge bits: 1982 PT-40, full-timers, currently in the tropical paradise along the Tex/Mex border)
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  #8  
Old 05-19-2010
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Rob Robinson Rob Robinson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Esmi View Post
Slightly Off topic: Raise your hand if you have ever locked up the brakes in your 'Bird of any vintage. I mean actually made skid marks.

(my hand remains at my side)
In 2009 I locked up the brakes on my 94 PT in rush hour El Paso traffic. I saw the black lines and the smoke and suffered with flat spotted tag tires after that.
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  #9  
Old 05-19-2010
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I have flat spotted a few tires too.
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2000 LXI 43
Bainbridge,Ga.
Port St Joe Fl.
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  #10  
Old 05-19-2010
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darrenayres darrenayres is offline
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I've driven a number of MCIs and Prevosts vintage 1993-2004 and none of them handle better than my 85-PT36. They climb hills faster, but I live in Florida! Who cares?
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