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Old 08-31-2009, 02:32 PM   #1
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Question Why so few Airstream motorhomes?

I wonder... why are there so few AirStream motorhomes out there? They seem to be rare whether they are for sale or just being owned & used. Were they too expensive? Were they not so reliable? No demand? Expensive to have them worked on? I would appreciate any feedback on AirStream motorhomes pro or con. Do you know of any qualified AS inspectors in Austin or San Antonio Texas? Thanks!

Why are there so few AirStream motorhomes? Too expensive, didn't catch on? expensive to repair? Not same quality as AS trailers? Wanted to ask you mechanical types... know any qualified AS inspectors in Texas?
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Old 08-31-2009, 02:45 PM   #2
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I merged your two threads and two posts into a single thread/post. You'll find that your responses are better if there's a single thread for everyone to comment on.

Roger
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Old 08-31-2009, 03:39 PM   #3
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First of all not that many were made. The 345 was the model most produced, and it is still the one most seen for sale.
Yes, these are somewhat expensive to maintain, but certainly no more or even less than SOB Moho's, where rubber roofs and cracked panels come into play.
They however have always had a higher resale value, retained a better image and usefulness than some of the other brands. I am speaking here mainly of the Classic, which is the aluminum riveted and not the fiberglass versions.
Try finding a model for sale other than a 345...it is often a challenge, even in these times of higher gas prices and such. When I bought my 280 it took months to find one, and I rarely if ever came across another for sale.
They are truly a labor of love, as if you own one you will find out. Also the support of other owners is outstanding.
By the way Airstream Life had an article sometime ago on the history of the AS Motorhomes. Check it out.
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Old 08-31-2009, 03:53 PM   #4
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There was a lot of competition and people made their choices. Airstream did not see it was profitable to continue when there was that small a demand for them and dropped the product line. The Aluminum ones were definitely higher priced by comparison to their competition (Foot vs Foot) and did not sell well. The motor homes are more complex and more difficult to maintain by comparison to the trailers but not that much different from other motor homes. The plastic version had no distinctive features, over the other brands, and could not justify the margins Airstream desires when they market a product and when they set the price at the margins they wanted, there was no demand.
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Old 08-31-2009, 05:59 PM   #5
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my 1979 24' cost over $50k new!
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Old 08-31-2009, 06:50 PM   #6
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There are certainly less than the trailers but there are quite a few around when you have an eye for them!

My site (Fred's Airstream Archives) has pictures of most of the years and models of motorhomes.

My vote is the price. They were far more expensive that their box counterparts.
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Old 08-31-2009, 07:08 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ALANSD View Post
They are truly a labor of love, as if you own one you will find out. Also the support of other owners is outstanding.
without that support I'd be lost and in debt up to my eyeballs!!!
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Old 09-01-2009, 04:34 AM   #8
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One thing for certain is that as you drive down the road in a classic Airstream motorhome you won't see yourself coming the other way often.

Compound that with the commercial side of the Airstream moho production and I'm able to say that I've never seen a 28 FC in person ...ever... in my extended travels.

On my shake down cruise to the NC mountains last week I realized just how interesting folks find Airstream One. In a Lowes parking lot I had two cars circling my rig at one time. Maybe it's the logo?
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Old 09-01-2009, 08:48 AM   #9
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this will make you cry

I have watched both of these Classics sit for nearly 5 years....not used, never moving.

Also a Sovereign...never used at same farm.
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Old 09-01-2009, 10:22 AM   #10
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sad.....someone could be enjoying those. There is a 345 in a shed near me that I have seen for 8 years, never saw it move though it looks to be maintained.
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Old 09-01-2009, 12:16 PM   #11
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86 345 owner

I have a 86 345 that came with a copy of the sales contract when I bought it. The sales price in 1986 was $106,614.00 and it is not an LE edition.I think the price compared to such brands as Winnebago kept the market suppressed for AS meaning fewer on the road today. You will see these mh's advertised for from about 12k to some guy in California that wants 55K for his.Pete
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Old 09-02-2009, 10:36 AM   #12
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The rarity toady makes them even more attractive to own. Those that have been converted to Cummins diesels should be a a very desirable item, as the 454 is so dated, though basically reliable.
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Old 09-02-2009, 07:30 PM   #13
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My 1987 245 sold for $115,664.46 in 1987.That was a lot of money back then. They are a labor of love. I also have a 9176 GMC Palm Beech I'm working on. This is another labor of love. I need to get rid of it but probably will end up keeping it. When I had my first 1976 GMC I was told that GMC meant "GET MORE CASH" and they were right.
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Old 09-03-2009, 10:11 AM   #14
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I also like those GMCs, Bluebird Wanderlodges and a few other motorhomes from the 70s and 80s, just can't afford to keep one
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Old 11-14-2009, 07:42 AM   #15
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I realize this is an older post but thought I would add to it. We recently purchased a 96 Landyacht Clipper Bus and it is a very rare bird only made in 95 and 96. New it was $182,000 which is probably why it is rare. While the AS purists don't think much of the AS motorhomes in general and especially the fiberglass ones, this coach does have a great shape and is different then others on the road. We like it and glad to have it in the family but I have not been able to find anyone else who has one which makes it an interesting hunt.
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Old 01-04-2010, 01:16 PM   #16
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We found the original invoice amongst the paperwork of our 1989 345LE, $125, Plus some ?

Plus the PO had solar and inverters installed for 8,000 Plus

Now these classics can be Purchased for less than todays cost of a New Suburban or Dully Pickup and are of great quality and value !

Many are tucked away in garages, Barns and storage units such as are other quality Historic vehicles and Most are well maintained, Or I would hope So ?

Just see how many 280 to 345, or 370's units are for sale ???

I Think the best way to maintain One of these classics is to do what Many on this site do and Drive them, Enjoy them and Keep them in Pres tine condition for another 20 Plus years !!!
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Old 01-04-2010, 01:46 PM   #17
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As I have posted before that the 96 Land Yacht Clipper Bus is very rare, only 25 made. I just found one for sale in Sacremento and I hope they get what they are asking! So far I have found 5 of the 25 but none of the 95's and don't know how many of those were made but I don't think too many. We get a lot of complments on it.
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Old 01-04-2010, 01:48 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Haggard View Post
I Think the best way to maintain One of these classics is to do what Many on this site do and Drive them, Enjoy them and Keep them in Pristine condition for another 20 Plus years !!!
I totally agree. The WORST thing for an RV is to remain unused. When folks sell them on my site, I always ask if they have used it recently. It is important information for potential buyers. An Airstream that sat in a driveway for five years will need lots of TLC and service before it can be used with confidence (tires, belts, hoses, etc..). If someone just got back from a two month trip, the unit has to be in reasonably good shape. When buying one, the FIRST question should be if it has been used recently!
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Old 01-04-2010, 04:49 PM   #19
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what is a 345?
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Old 01-04-2010, 05:11 PM   #20
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This is a 345 LE. The numbers mean length. 345 is 34.5 feet long.
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