Jump to content


Photo

18ft 86 sunrader verses 20ft dolphin


  • Please log in to reply
9 replies to this topic

#1 mary in montana

mary in montana

    Newbie

  • Members
  • 5 posts

Posted 09 April 2009 - 10:47 PM

Hi there....I am looking at buying a 1986 18ft 4 cylinder automatic Sunrader with 90K miles and have a few questions. Although I have been looking at several makes and models of Toyota RV's the Sunrader seems like its the most economical. This Sunrader however does not have AC in the cab. Is that standard for some 86 models? Would it be expensive to add AC in the cab? The owner says that the lack of air and power steerring allows less drag on the engine, but I would like AC. Also, the fact that it is an automatic, will I get less fuel economy than a manual and will climibing hills be harder out here in MT. I have been been looking at a 84 manual 20ft Dolphin with 60K miles. Which would have better gas mileage? Any information would be appreciated regarding things to consider before purchasing. Mary

#2 WME

WME

    Ya Baby!

  • Toyota Advanced Member
  • 1,901 posts

Posted 10 April 2009 - 06:48 AM

I have an 86 Escaper w/automatic here in Wy, I get over the passes sooner or later. But it is very easy to abuse an auto so check the fluid and do a careful test drive.
Is either one fuel injected? EFI is more expensive to repair but it runs better and gets better MPG.

#3 futar

futar

    George/Futar

  • Toyota Advanced Member
  • 238 posts

Posted 10 April 2009 - 11:03 AM

I don't know if your summers are humid or where you plan to travel to. On my first Toy that didn't have AC about 17 years ago I installed an evaporative roof cooler in the front roof vent. http://www.turbokool.com/
In that location I could vent it down on the cab while driving by sliding the matress insert forward. They use very little electricity. They will not work good in humid climates. They do use water so I take an extra six gallon jug along.

My present Toy has regular dash and roof air but I installed an evaporative unit anyway for use in the desert. I can run it without a generator.

#4 Gulfstream Greg

Gulfstream Greg

    Happy Trails!

  • Admin
  • 1,607 posts

Posted 10 April 2009 - 11:34 AM

Floor plan. That's number one. As for AC by the time you install a cab AC system you could have bought something else and be much more happy. Personally I want cab AC. Many times we find ourselves coming home West bound with the afternoon sun beaming straight into the cab on a hot summer day. 1986 I think will be a fuel injected engine but maybe not. A auto trans behind the 4 does not have a locking torque converter so they tend to run a bit hotter. Installing a tran temp gauge, aux trans cooler in front of the radiator and using synthetic trans oil helps.

Power steering - have you driven the one with no power steering? 200 miles out on twisty roads and you might really want that pwr steering.

As far as being economical that's a double edge sword. Lower horse power means you are going to use more fuel when climbing mountains. And unless your driving 30000 miles a year the difference in getting 2 more miles to the gallon might be something to weigh against having more horse power under the hood. The 84 with probably a 20r will be the lowest, then a 22r carb motor, then a 22 r fuel injected and the V6 with the most power. Many folks with V6 report 16 MPG and higher depending on terrain.

Posted Image


#5 T.A.J.

T.A.J.

    Super Member

  • Toyota Advanced Member
  • 79 posts

Posted 11 April 2009 - 07:27 AM

Hi Mary in Mt.
This is Troy in Mt.
I've got an '84 Dolphin. It's got the 22R engine w/ four speed. Added is a weber carb., tuned header, and K&N filters.I live in Butte and get over the passes just fine. ( 40-45 MPH)
I can drive 70-75 on the flats but I like it 60-65.
From Butte to Columbia Falls last year I got 14-15 MPG.
I'm happy with that. I really enjoy my Dolphin and would recommend the purchase of one in good shape with no H2O leaks to any one. I do have cab air. It's nice to have. I turn it off on all hills!
I don't have power steering and get along just fine without it.
Good luck and it's nice to hear from a fellow Montanan.
T.A.J.
TROY from Mt.

#6 Kathy Laurin

Kathy Laurin

    MT Rader

  • Members
  • 18 posts

Posted 11 April 2009 - 08:10 PM

Hi Mary. I have an 1988 18' Sunrader. I mostly travel throughout the Rocky Mountains but have done other long road trips as well. Passes and strong headwinds will slow you down but you will get there eventually. I have been very happy with my Sunrader. I agree with Greg, in that your first priority should be getting the floor plan you will be most happy with. As far as the air goes, it really depends on how/where you plan on using your camper. The cab air is nice but I would not necessarily pass up a nice unit because it did not have it. I also saw your posting on Craigslist. I am also in Missoula. Would be glad to discuss things to consider in more detail with you.
Kathy
1988 18' Sunrader

#7 comfun1

comfun1

    Advanced Member

  • Toyota Advanced Member
  • 38 posts

Posted 12 April 2009 - 10:02 AM

I've got an '86 Escaper 4 cyl, fuel injecter, 4 sp, no ps, dash air, roof air been through the passes in the rockies several trips now, no problems. When I tow my two four wheelers that slows me down but I still get there, more relaxing driving without them though. As far as air if you ever go south into hot humid states you will have to have air or you will sweat like a pig day and night in the summer months. I'm from Kansas and the southeast part of the state is unbearable. Now I have been in some of the western parts of Kansas that are not to bad when the sun goes down and it's dry and a breeze is blowing. Another great thing about roof air, some campgrounds can be noisy and with the windows closed and the air on you sleep through the night without hearing a thing. The only time power steering would be needed is when parking, I would like to have ps then. Once you are moving the steering does not take much effort. On the highway there is no difference. My mileage has ranged from 13 to 23 mpg most times it is about 16-17 mpg. Oddly I seem to get some of the best mileage at high altitudes. Well, I have rambled on long enough. Mike

#8 mary in montana

mary in montana

    Newbie

  • Members
  • 5 posts

Posted 12 April 2009 - 09:26 PM

Hi Mary. I have an 1988 18' Sunrader. I mostly travel throughout the Rocky Mountains but have done other long road trips as well. Passes and strong headwinds will slow you down but you will get there eventually. I have been very happy with my Sunrader. I agree with Greg, in that your first priority should be getting the floor plan you will be most happy with. As far as the air goes, it really depends on how/where you plan on using your camper. The cab air is nice but I would not necessarily pass up a nice unit because it did not have it. I also saw your posting on Craigslist. I am also in Missoula. Would be glad to discuss things to consider in more detail with you.


Hi Kathy, Good to hear from a fellow Missoulian...Yes, I would like to commnicate! My craigs list posting brought me the 86 18ft sunrader I posted about with no air in the cab and no power steering. The seller in Washington state could not send pictures so I suggested an RV inspection since he lived about 500 miles away. Well he responded to my request by saying it was getting to complicated....so go figure...still looking at the dolphin but it too is at a distance and is 20ft. Seems to be lots of toyotas her but they are all 21ft it seems. I have owned a Dolphin and also a Winnebago Warrior. Thanks much!

Mary in Missoula mplace21@msn.com

#9 mary in montana

mary in montana

    Newbie

  • Members
  • 5 posts

Posted 12 April 2009 - 09:47 PM

Hi Mary in Mt.
This is Troy in Mt.
I've got an '84 Dolphin. It's got the 22R engine w/ four speed. Added is a weber carb., tuned header, and K&N filters.I live in Butte and get over the passes just fine. ( 40-45 MPH)
I can drive 70-75 on the flats but I like it 60-65.
From Butte to Columbia Falls last year I got 14-15 MPG.
I'm happy with that. I really enjoy my Dolphin and would recommend the purchase of one in good shape with no H2O leaks to any one. I do have cab air. It's nice to have. I turn it off on all hills!
I don't have power steering and get along just fine without it.
Good luck and it's nice to hear from a fellow Montanan.
T.A.J.


thanks for the response .....the Sunrader fell though

#10 bajadulce

bajadulce

    Platinum Member

  • Admin
  • 616 posts

Posted 13 April 2009 - 06:58 PM

They make 4cyl automatic campers? I did not know this. The few automatics I had were always a pain especially when the miles racked up on them. Automatics have their place I suppose. Ever have a starter go out in the middle of nowhere tho miles from civilization? Or a dead battery? :)




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users