Importing a fifth wheel caravan from USA.

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grb
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Importing a fifth wheel caravan from USA.

Postby grb » Sun Nov 06, 2011 8:03 pm

I am searching fifth wheel units in USA and see most show the dry weight. Is this the maximum allowed under NZ regs for a trailer to qualify for a WOF? If not do I have to bring the trailer in, load it and put over a weigh bridge to confirm the weight? Any help would be appreciated.
Also any thing else i need to be aware of before going to States and looking to buy. I know have to watch the width is no more then 2.5 m.

Has anyone done this and what is the approx shipping costs?

Thanks, hope someone can help. :?

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Nut17
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Re: Importing a fifth wheel caravan from USA.

Postby Nut17 » Mon Nov 07, 2011 6:15 am

There are several other things that can cause heartache before an RV manufactured in the USA can be used in NZ, with the potentially most expensive being the electrical wiring and the whole 110v 60Hz / 230v 50Hz debacle. There are others on the forum who will be able to provide more details in this area, but it is not uncommon that a complete mains rewire and replacement of all mains powered appliances will be required to obtain an electrical COF. 230v - 110v transformers can no longer be used in most cases.

Do the research and this forum is definitely a great place to start.

If you do a search on the forum using "American import" or "110v appliances" you will find plenty of threads covering these issues.

Cheers Chris
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fredalvrez
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Re: Importing a fifth wheel caravan from USA.

Postby fredalvrez » Mon Nov 07, 2011 6:50 am

+1 for Chris' answer.
I believe for wof requirements it's the laden (gvw) weight.
Checkout out www.rvwholsalers.com as they generally list both the dry and gvr for each model they sell. I'm not saying you should buy from them, but it's handy info. They are cheap though!
Also www.rv.net is a USA forum very similar to this one and there are tens of thousands of posts under 5th wheels there, and they are very quick to answer any questions you might have.
Wiring to NZ standards is an issue and a cost that has to be allowed for. In saying that, it's not that big of a job to rewire, but I know there are some sparkys out there that see this flash new 5th wheel and charge more/take longer because they believe the owner will pay. Sad but true. You can legally use a transformer as long as it can be fitted within the actual appliance it is powering. For example, the fridge that your new 5th wheel comes with - you can fit a tranformer behind the fridge and as long as it's enclosed within the fridge (which is easy) this is legal for an electrical wof. Other appliances like microwave just aren't worth worrying about, just replace with NZ ones. Now this is the ruling as I believe it to be but I suggest you get your own advice on it :-).

fred

grb
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Re: Importing a fifth wheel caravan from USA.

Postby grb » Mon Nov 07, 2011 6:18 pm

Thanks for the info. I am happy to do the re-wiring as I can do alot of this my self. Understand the appliances need replacing.
If the manufactures do not show the gross ladden weight how do I establish this.
Anyone know the approx freight cost

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fredalvrez
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Re: Importing a fifth wheel caravan from USA.

Postby fredalvrez » Wed Nov 09, 2011 6:20 am

I've yet to see an actual manufacturer's website that doesn't show the GVRW.
Have you tried downloading the PDF brochure for the model you are interested in? That should have the GVRW if it's not on the website itself....

fred

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Re: Importing a fifth wheel caravan from USA.

Postby fredalvrez » Wed Nov 09, 2011 6:24 am

re freight, it depends on the length. All 5th wheels/caravans have to go on deck on a 'flat rack'.
My 5th wheel which is 34feet long was US$12,500 for freight alone, plus some port costs, then add duty on in NZ on the purchase price plus shipping cost plus insurance cost and total that, then add gst to that total. But I guess you know all that already.


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