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Old 04-06-2014, 11:28 AM   #15
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No thanks, I'll stick with aluminum because I like the look of aluminum and rivets in the iconic shape. There are many alternatives available; this is just another. Airstream has watched people building and buying a better mousetrap for over 80 years and is the only one surviving as the innovators have come and gone.
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Old 04-06-2014, 12:06 PM   #16
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Hmmmmm

750 K ??? You could buy a house, trailer, tow vehicle, an Interstate, and a motorhome.
Would I want to navigate with a 19 foot tow vehicle, plus a 35 foot trailer? With that overhang, you better stay on the blacktop.
Maybe rich movie stars would use them on location.
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Old 04-06-2014, 12:39 PM   #17
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it looks like a great add on vehicle for a funeral home to tow behind the hearse for group funerals.


Is it really necessary for carbon fiber vehicles to be black or is that just part of the "bad" image


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Old 04-06-2014, 12:45 PM   #18
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They start around $150000. A friend of mine went to the press event about a month ago. The trailer was bare on the inside and for several panels they used a 'carbon fiber film' on top of another material. The event was to create buzz; the trailer is nowhere ready for production.
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Old 04-06-2014, 01:21 PM   #19
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Did I just miss it, or was there nothing in that video about the INSIDE? Think about what an odd omission that is. A trailer isn't selling a hull, like a boat would. A trailer is selling living space. So ... where is it?


I have limited experience with Carbon Fiber. I only know one thing about it. Carbon fiber is more toxic than fiberglass--you can't sand it or cut it without a full face respirator. Supposedly the fiber is like little needles, that get in your eyes or lungs or skin. To me, that's a big drawback.


Although, if someone is going to spend $150,000 for a travel trailer, I guess they can afford to hire someone to take the environmental risk.
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Old 04-06-2014, 01:33 PM   #20
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My GOD is that thing hideously FUGLY!


No sense of proportion, absolutely HORRID paintjob (look closely when they close-up around the lights and front corners), terrible attention to detail (check out how that side marker light is mounted), stupid "headlights" for some unknown reason using what looks to be something inspired by a 1970's era Star Wars spaceship drawing, basic steel frame (why no weight savings there?) and frankly it looks like something Batman's Grandfather would own...years after he traded in the sleek aerodynamic badass Batmobile, he settled down and got himself an old-folks trailer but painted it black just to remind himself that he was, at one time, "cool."


Looks like something THIS guy would camp in:
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Old 04-06-2014, 02:11 PM   #21
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[QUOTE=ggoat!!!;1438490]My GOD is that thing hideously FUGLY!


I get the whole spit on the slab sliders thing, but you've missed the point of this thread….I wasn't asking for a critical appraisal of this RV or any other slab side. I was asking if a carbon fibre trailer, built with the same iconic Airstream shape and costing the same would appeal to Airstreamers.

Should Airstream consider this material for future Airstreams if the cost of carbon fibre equals the cost of aluminum?

Again, thanks for keeping things civil

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Old 04-06-2014, 02:33 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Isuzusweet View Post

I get the whole spit on the slab sliders thing, but you've missed the point of this thread….I wasn't asking for a critical appraisal of this RV or any other slab side.

No one is spitting on "slab-sliders" whatever the hell that is. If you're referring to slab-sided trailers, I have absolutely nothing against them. Some "slab sided" trailers in the 70's are gorgeous; one of the worst things about owning an Airstream is the stereotype that all Airstream owners are snob-nosed uppity people who look down on other types of trailers. Again, where ANYWHERE in my response did I mention ANYTHING about the shape of that trailer being slab-sided? It didn't even enter my MIND. What entered my mind was, "That's f'n hideous."


Just because I stated it was ugly made you assume I stated that because it wasn't in the shape of an Airstream. Absolutely incorrect. Jumping to unfounded conclusions only reinforces the Airstream owner stereotype. We don't all hate "regular" RVs.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Isuzusweet View Post
Should Airstream consider this material for future Airstreams if the cost of carbon fibre equals the cost of aluminum?

No.
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Old 04-06-2014, 03:02 PM   #23
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Quote:
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Hello all.

First a disclaimer. I'm not trying to set the house on fire but start a discussion.

Lets face it, aluminum is not getting cheaper, while exotic carbon fibre is. At what point should Airstream consider changing over to this extremely strong yet light and durable material?

CR-1 Carbon RV Unveiling Mar10 on Vimeo

The new trailer is made by Global Caravan Technologies but can cost up to 3/4 of a million dollars.

Would you consider buying a carbon fibre trailer or motorhome if the cost to buy were comparable?
Actually you asked two questions.


My answer to the first one is: Slightly after the devils domicile freezes over. If they do decide to discontinue Aluminum, them I hope they have enough respect for the Airstream heritage to call it something else.


Number 2. I seriously doubt it.


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Old 04-06-2014, 03:38 PM   #24
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Great Question

I think there is/will be a market for both the classical Airstream and new, sleek, Darth Vader looking RVs. I am thinking of the comparison in markets to those who want a classic Chris Craft as opposed to those wanting a Sea Ray. I bought a new AS for the LEDs and other modern amenities but styled in a classic look. The AS Flying Cloud gives me that. Yes, I also considered the black RV but the classic styling fit me better. Will carbon fiber, as a technology, make it into an AS? Maybe some of the parts but in the composition of the body, no. That will be for a new company that builds manufacturing processes and tools, from the ground up for this material.

I worked for Boeing who underwent a change in manufacturing processes dating back to "Greenfield" operations in the 80's. They worked with CF for engine nacelle and ducting before using the material in wings or body sections. Again, AS is steeped in tradition and has a strong following but don't expect them to have a ROI to move to a totally new manufacturing process. Cost would be prohibitive.
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Old 04-06-2014, 03:43 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by dprvashon View Post
I think there is/will be a market for both the classical Airstream and new, sleek, Darth Vader looking RVs.


.................................................. ........

That, I am sure is the case. I am sure as long as poeple will buy Aluminum Airstreams, they will make them.
If Thor wants to build Carbon Fiber trailers, they have very many non descript SOB brands under which to do it.


Depending on where on Vashon you live, I may have looked out my front window at your house when I was much younger.
I grew up in Normandy Park.



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Old 04-06-2014, 03:44 PM   #26
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There is no reason that should stop Airstream from using more composites in the construction of their trailers. The base flooring and interior walls comes to mind. To me what makes an Airstream is the shape and aluminum outside shells. I find it unconscionable that Airstream is still using plywood in the floor.
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Old 04-06-2014, 04:07 PM   #27
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I also worked at Boeing. I was a structural analyst, and a dyamicist there. I also am a pilot and build airplanes. But all that aside....

There is a HUGE misunderstanding about carbon fiber. Folks act like it is the "Miracle Material." The truth is, it is only the fibers. The matrix is still the same stuff you use with fiberglass.

See, any composite structure, say a canoe, that is made of "composite" material (and that itself is a misnomer...composite could mean wood and straw....) is comprised of two major parts: The filaments and the matrix. The matrix is the glue/resin/slime that holds it all together. It's typically an epoxy or vinyl resin. The filaments are the fibrous strands of glass or carbon.

Now, both fiber glass and carbon fiber are much stronger than steel. Anywhere from 150,000 psi to about 350,000 psi. Thing is, this is a camper trailer, not a replacement for the Saturn V rocket (which was primarily aluminum). Do you really need 350,000 psi fibers in the shell structure? If you used fiberglass fibers, it would still be at least three times stronger than Airstream's aluminum. But what about the matrix? Even if you have these super strong fibers, the matrix also comes into play. So if you use cheap resin, the carbon fiber means nothing.

At any rate, not trying to tear this new camper apart. To me, it looks pretty cool. All I'm saying is that, from a design standpoint, is it really necessary to use carbon fiber? I haven't seen a car built yet, other than maybe a Formula One racer, where carbon fiber was actually warranted. In every other instance (including Ferrari's road cars), it's basically marketing hype. There is not enough stress on the body panels of a Ferrari F-40 to require carbon fiber. Plain old E-glass would be just fine.

It sure sounds cool to use carbon fiber. But it's cost doesn't often justify it's being used.

Now all that being said, is a composite shell better than an aluminum one? Maybe. Look at all the problems of the 787.

Let's take it a step further: Look at the 777. It has a composite empennage (tail). What Boeing found was that this gains water weight, wasn't worth the extra manufacturing costs, it gains water weight because it's not impervious, and if the fuel truck runs into it in some second or third world airport and dings it up, they can't fix it. The 747-X was going to have an all aluminum tail, just because of this.

But, you can eliminate all rivets. And composites don't fatigue.

I looked at a Keystone Vantage a couple of years ago. It looked like a composite Airstream, based on the advertising literature. Thing looked like The Cat's Meow. And it could maybe have been. But their execution wasn't the greatest.

Yes, a composite travel trailer could be really cool. I've just not seen one executed at a reasonable price yet. Not to say they can't get this one's price down and sell them in droves.

See ya,
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Old 04-06-2014, 04:43 PM   #28
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It's all outdated.

I want a wood pulp extract trailer.

Wood pulp extract stronger than carbon fiber or Kevlar


And while I'm at it I want some of these so I don't have to climb up on the roof to clean the solar panels.

http://www.gizmag.com/ecoppia-e4-ketura-sun/31428/

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