I have used Canon all my life from the manuals to the AFs. It is a matter of what fits your needs and fits your hands when it comes to a choice of Canon or Nikon. When I am ask what we should get I say sit down and make a short list then go shopping. If looking at the Rebel be carful the lens mount is not plastic. They were this way in the begining not sure about now. This will factor for your durablitly. One step up is the 40 or 50Ds. I use 2 1D Mark IIs. Way on the high side of what your looking for but it fit my needs as a shooter. I had a 10D in the begining and wore it out in 6-8 months. Another thing is when looking at bodies get a little bit more than what you need so if you ever change what you want to do the camera will grow with you. For the non pro market and if you can afford it i would say save on the body and by the lenses with the good glass. I have seen this with wedding i have photographed with cheaper lenses and the contrast and color is so much better with the better glass. It is the glass that makes your images. The body only controls what the lens sees. my .02 You can't really go wrong in what is out there today. good luck and have fun with what ever you get.
08 TT FJC
82 Scrambler (Scraps)
81 Scrambler (Sassy)
69 Maro... next project when the Jeeps get done.....