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Old 02-27-2011, 02:21 AM   #1
Davydd
 
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Default 2011 Great West Van Legend

This is our new Great West Van Legend fresh off the conversion line this February.







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Old 03-01-2011, 12:21 AM   #2
israndy
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Default Re: 2011 Great West Van Legend

Such a nice layout, what's the driver's seat look like from the sliding door? What's the bath like?

-Randy
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Old 03-06-2011, 05:44 AM   #3
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Default Re: 2011 Great West Van Legend

+1 for more pictures!

Thanks!
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Old 03-09-2011, 05:08 AM   #4
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Default Re: 2011 Great West Van Legend

I see you changed from a Pleasure Way to a Great West Van - can you tell us what attracted you about the GWV? (trying to decide between an Airstream Interstate, GWV, or Roadtrek RS). Thanks!
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Old 03-22-2011, 04:01 PM   #5
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Default Re: 2011 Great West Van Legend

This is our second B. Our first B was a 2005 Pleasure-Way Plateau Sprinter. GWV's current competitors building on the same 3500, 170" WB model are the Roadtrek RS Adventurous, the Leisure Travel Vans Free Spirit, The Pleasure-Way Plateau, the Airstream Interstate and maybe soon the Winnebago ERA again. You can convert the same model in your own custom configuration through Sportsmobile.

Why did we switch from Pleasure-Way or go with Great West Van? We upgraded to a new GWV Legend to satisfy several desires we accumulated over five years of B van use. The first obvious one was getting a new and newer design Sprinter with better cab luxuries and quieter, smoother ride.







Secondly, we desired more zoned living in being able to utilize the driver and passenger seat swiveled around toward the back of the van and set up to a temporary table. We didn't have that in our Pleasure-Way. We did not want a second row of passenger seats and have to give up storage for them.



Thirdly, we desired a fly and mosquito screen solution so we could come and go from the B without opening and closing the large sliding door. We also needed to keep our cat inside the B. GWV has come up with a screen enclosure and a sliding screen door that is unique to meet this desire. I don't think any other manufacturer has addressed this issue.



We also had the dealer add a custom roll and zip up, leave in place bug screen to enclose the back door opening. GWV offers a snap on one as an option but the dealer's solution was better.

Fourthly, we own a 20 cubic foot hitch receiver cargo carrier in order to carry two inflatable kayaks and various other items. After a couple of lengthy trips including one six week trip where we used our kayaks in only one place we decided a cargo carrier that extends the B length another 3 feet just wasn't worth the aggravation. It completely changed where we drove and where we parked. So on one trip we left them at home and you guessed it, we passed up many unanticipated opportunities where we could have used the kayaks. So the desire to carry them inside the B yet not in the way became a huge desire. Again, GWV came up with a unique design no other B has in the Tri-fold electric sofa to give us the storage area we desired.

THE TRI-FOLD ELECTRIC SOFA

The Great West Van Legend is an electric tri-sofa design without the attending ottomans and backrest cushions to fill in for a bed as most other Bs have. The sofa flattens and fills in the back area into a King bed utilizing three panels - the seat, the seat back and another panel behind the seat back. I think this is unique to GWV. You can sit three legally while underway and you can adjust the back slope. The wheel wells of the 3500 dually chassis are carpeted and serve as foot stools.

The single biggest advantage of the GWV tri-fold sofa is its tremendous storage. It rides on side rails so the underside storage is 12"D x 69" x 40" and mostly free of interfering support hardware. We can store everything we had stored under the sofa in our P-W plus everything we had stored in a 20 cubic foot cargo carrier shell on our hitch receiver. In addition it has a 13"D x 20" x 27" basement storage. We haven't sleeped in it yet so are hoping on the come it will be what we wanted.

The Tri-fold Sofa


The Bed


Clear storage under the sofa


The bonus. If you want you can glide the whole sofa forward and have standup storage behind for things like bicycles while traveling.


This view is with the sofa all the way forward. What you see stored is what will fit under with the sofa all the way back or in the bed position. It is everything that was carried in our previous P-W Plateau with the hitch cargo carrier. The two gray bags are inflatable kayaks that were previously carried in the cargo carrier.


Lastly, for a B we were impressed by the ample and clear (comparatively) pass through wide aisle from front to back. It is a full 28". What does that mean? You don't have squeeze sideways to get by your partner or interrupt and wait your turn to pass. The Airstream Interstate closes down to a tight 19" between fixed cabinets to get to the bed. Most of the other electric sofa models also squeeze you down to get to the sofa to sit. No other B comes close to the 28" clearance. This is something you don't appreciate unless you have prior B experience and I suspect is a unexpressed but felt reason some people move up to a B+ RV.



We thought the Pleasure-Way Plateau had the best bathroom of the mentioned Bs with good space, a window, a nice vanity and medicine cabinet and an operable roof vent. The GWV has a good size bathroom as well but with a quirky slide out lavatory over the toilet. Since we haven't camped yet I am kind of holding my opinion in reserve on this idea. It does make for a more roomier bathroom for a shower without having a lav in the way and the shower head itself is better positioned. The bathroom also has a rather large roof skylight that is nice.

Bathroom Skylight


Slideout Lavatory


Bathroom with Lavatory closed. It slides in under a cabinet.


There were also a lot of other things we were looking to upgrade to that almost every B could have satisfied such as two house batteries, but this B in aggregate satisfied the most desires for us and in more unique ways.
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Old 03-22-2011, 04:09 PM   #6
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Default Re: 2011 Great West Van Legend

I noticed my earlier post lost their photos. I renamed a Photobucket album that caused that. I can't edit the message to correct the links. Does the edit button go away after a period of time?

I have a MobileMe photo gallery with close to 80 photos of the Legend with about everything you would want to look at.

Our 2011 Great West Van Legend
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Old 03-22-2011, 04:29 PM   #7
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Default Re: 2011 Great West Van Legend

Very innovative design ideas, and it appears to fill your needs well. While that couch design is awesome, I'm afraid the payment is a not too good bed. I recall one of these three part sofa beds in an earlier B of ours that was pretty uncomfortable. I tried so much to make that sofa lie down flat, and all sorts of remedies and none worked. I would need to try sleeping on one before I would agree to this sofa. However I like most everything else about this design. Have you tried sleeping in this sofa yet?
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Old 03-22-2011, 04:44 PM   #8
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Default Re: 2011 Great West Van Legend

Quote:
Originally Posted by israndy View Post
Such a nice layout, what's the driver's seat look like from the sliding door? What's the bath like?

-Randy
Randy,

I hope I answered your questions with my comments and photos. You might ask what the view is like from the driver's seat to the sliding door? Great. It is an unimpeded floor to ceiling view outside with the sliding door all the way open. Which brings up a point that I don't understand about B layouts. The Roadtrek RS, Airstream Interstate and Winnebago ERA have floor plans with the kitchen counter on the driver's side and tall bathroom and cabinets on the passenger side. The Pleasure-Way Plateau, Leisure Travel Vans Free Spirit and the GWV Legend have the opposite layout. Historically Roadtrek has probably published the most enticing B photos of looking in and seeing four nice captain chairs around a table and then an unimpeded bank of windows on the driver's side. It made the B look very livable.

But here is the reality. The GWV Legend has that same unimpeded bank of windows on the passenger side including the huge screen enclosed floor to ceiling sliding door. The passenger side is the side that looks into your campground space where the picnic table, fire pit and your awning living is not the next door campground space. So inside shares with your outside. Someone working at the kitchen counter can see others outside at the chairs and picnic table.

When driving your major blind spot is mostly directly behind you. You can't see the tall cabinets and for that matter anything else directly behind you when driving. For traffic passing you on the left you use your outside rear view mirror mostly. At least I do. The more critical passing is a car coming up on your right on a freeway or when you are moving over to exit. With windows you have a much clearer view with your windshield rear view mirror in addition to your passenger side rear view mirror. If stopped and sitting in the driver's seat and you desire to turn around to look toward the back you turn right and see more open area rather than stare into tall cabinets.

The driver side tall cabinet designs also have microwaves and refrigerators up off the floor instead of low under the countertop or on the floor. The bottom of my refrigerator is a comfortable 17" off the floor and the microwave is at eye level viewable.

That's my take on the logic of B plan layout. I don't understand the logic of the Roadtrek and Airstream.
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Old 03-22-2011, 04:56 PM   #9
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Default Re: 2011 Great West Van Legend

Al,

I have not slept on the bed yet. My initial impression is it should be comfortable since my body pressure points hit on the cushion and not on the joints. GWV builds the sofa with three layers of varying density foam and it is pretty thick. We'll find out soon enough in heading out in a little over a week. :)

Personally I could sleep on a floor. At home we have a Select Comfort Sleep Number bed and I crank it up to its hardest at No. 100. I never used a foam topping on our Pleasure-Way Plateau bed. My wife used a foam topper on that bed.

What I definitely do like is not having to go that extra step putting in board supports to infill with the ottoman backrest cushions. We will no longer have that optional semi twin bed arrangement in leaving out those infill cushions. That will be no loss to us. We tried that a couple of times and decided we did not like it.
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Old 03-22-2011, 06:41 PM   #10
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Default Re: 2011 Great West Van Legend

Sweet! Very similar to our 4Winds Ventura. You do have a couple features I like.... the screen door on the slider door opening and that hide-away lavatory basin.
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