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Old 07-19-2014, 08:19 PM   #1
BikerBill
 
2014 Interstate Ext. Coach
Poconos of Pa , Pennsylvania
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No Longer Own an Interstate

Well we pulled the plug on our 2014/13 Airstream Interstate Extended body. Ordered a 2014/14 Roadtrek CS Adventurous Extended Body with the E-trek option. The new one will have 3 capts. chairs but a 7+ cuft fridge and a wardrobe short and tall. And both doors open on the bathroom---yea! Last year we almost bought the Roadtrek but when we were shown the longer body with the Airstream we went for the storage inside even though the Airstream had the small fridge. Served us well for over 7000 miles in 10 months but now Roadtrek is making the extended body available. So we dropped off our Airstream trade today at Fretz RV, Souderton, PA and await delivery of our new Roadtrek. I'll still monitor this forum and if I can still impart help with technical answers to questions I am familiar with.
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Old 07-19-2014, 09:54 PM   #2
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We're sorry to see you leave the Airstream family, but you have to go with what is right for you. Let us know if the Roadtrek meets your expectations.

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Old 07-19-2014, 09:59 PM   #3
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Hey, Brother.. Stay kewl..

come by often and let us know how AS can improve so we don't lose good folks...
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Old 07-19-2014, 10:40 PM   #4
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I hope this doesn't count as hijacking this thread, but I, too, am now an Interstate Alumni. Our 2005 Interstate has moved to Maine and a new owner. We just took delivery of a 2014 Great West Vans Legend SE--the first one made in the USA after GWV's move from Canada.





You can read about our acquisition here:

2014 Great West Vans Legend SE

I, too, will try to check in here from time to time.

Happy travels, everyone.
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Old 07-20-2014, 09:56 AM   #5
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BTW: Congrats on your new rig, BikerBill. The Roadtrek e-Trek option is fascinating. Let us know how it goes.
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Old 07-20-2014, 11:32 AM   #6
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Congratulations on the new van. When we were looking, we considered the E-Trek and almost pulled that trigger. The extra space of the Airstream EXT made the difference.....and now RT offers that length also.....hmmmmm


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Old 07-20-2014, 12:31 PM   #7
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To "cwf." Last summer when we began our search for a Class B after having sold a 40' 16 years old customer built Prevost bus that we owned from new, we kinda settled in on the Roadtrek. There were news stories about this new E-trek model with lots of batteries, no propane/diesel generator and an engine-driven add-on alternator/generator for the batteries and a 5000 watt inverter. Everything runs thru the inverter and with ample battery charge, you can run the AC and the M-wave together. But lots of doubters and questions arose. it was quite new. We went to the Hershey PA show. We looked and talked to Roadtrek factory people and there were conflicting answers even then about the E-trek. So we kinda decided on the Roadtrek Adventurous CS. It had a 7 cu ft fridge, 3 capts. chairs, and a 2-doors-opening bathroom. It used an Alde propane fueled hot water boiler that provided radiant floor heat and several radiant sections of heat in the lower cabinets with openings to the RV for heating. Impressive. Then we went to a dealer in NJ that sold them. While talking with the salesman and explaining our past m-homes, he asked if we had looked at the Airstream Interstate.My answer was "yes" on the internet but the pictures they showed were mostly of people all dressed "to the nines" at restaurants, theaters, golfing, etc. We wanted to use it to camp. He showed us one. It was the 3 seat extended body one. After being in the regular 3500 series Meercedes and now inside the extended body we were sold. Nicer quality fit and finish on cabinets. BUT much smaller fridge. Tough to get into the bathroom with the single door, and what the "H__L" is it with the other door in the bathroom to allow room for your shoulders. But we did but it. Immediately added a portable ARB fridge behind the driver so now we had ample fridge capacity. Built a bulkhead in the back to utilize the storage behind the couch. Added a couple more electrical outlets. Added a 2nd propane on-off illuminated switch inside and we used it for 10 months.

What will we miss?
Definitely not the stupid arrangement that Airstream has on the bathroom door.
Definitely not the small 3 cu ft fridge. Now we have 7+ cu ft and a decent freezer at eye level.
Definitely not the narrow space in the isle due to the bathroom door popped out those extra 5" or so.
Definitely not crawling on the floor to use the m-wave. Now its also at eye level.
Definitely not the 1000 watt inverter. We now will have a 5000 watt inverter.
Definitely not the noisy suburban heater.
Definitely not the propane generator.
Definitely not the 2nd front TV which we never used but hit my head on many times getting into the front seats.
Definitely not the narrow, small extra step when getting into the driver-passenger seat that both of us have slipped off more than once.
But we will miss the quality and finish of the cabinetry of the Airstream.
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Old 07-20-2014, 01:56 PM   #8
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Welcome to the RT club Bill. We love our CS. I knew of the EXT coming but actually prefer the shorter body. We'll use a hitch cargo carrier when we need the extra storage, but so far it suits us fine as is. I had already bought a CS before the AS "tour" came out and glad I did. The tour was a real disappointment.

We provided plenty of feedback prior to the announcement of the tour to the AS reps at the Tampa RV Supershow and were repulsed by their cavalier attitude. They couldn't care less about the "short"comings of the fridge and microwave it seems. We told them it was a no go to have them so low.

We still like our AS trailer and will continue to use it on the West Coast, but for now, our favorite touring machine will be our CS. No regrets about not getting the E-Trek, and we'll re-assess down the road if we deem it necessary to have an all electric option. I do admire you for your choice however.
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Old 07-20-2014, 02:10 PM   #9
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Bill, we will miss you (and Avanti too, of course), and appreciate all the interesting posts and information you have provided on this forum.

Now, I wonder if you would be gracious enough to provide us some feedback in due course on the E-Trek functionality. For example I'm sure we would all be interested to know whether the Roadtrek claims on powering the AC by battery/inverter are genuine. How many hours of AC use can you get without having to resort to starting the engine. Things like that. I for one would love to be able to get rid of the propane and Onan.

Many thanks, Peter.


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Old 07-20-2014, 02:18 PM   #10
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2014 Interstate Ext. Coach
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Follow up on some comments above. Roadtrek is debuting a new model called th TS, Touring Sedan, I believe at the Hershey PA show in Sept. Its very similar in appearance inside to the AI and the m-wave is low and it is a small fridge but with 4 seats. It appears to have laminate cabinets and some aluminum extrusions along the top for lighting.

As for the time length to recharge batteries when the E-trek is suppling power for the AC. I've made many comments having been in the HVAC business about power needed for AC. What color is the outside of the m-home? Where are you: direct sun or some shade? What is outside temp and humidity? And the most important: what is you temp and humidity tolerance? Some people like their AC at 72 some like it at 82 and some like humidity (not me) and some like dry heat, Arizona (me but not my wife). These are the factors that affect run time with an AC and that will of course affect battery draw. I would hope for maybe 2 hours in 90+ degree east coast humidity and the inside at 80.

And yes I will post more once we get it.
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Old 07-20-2014, 05:32 PM   #11
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Thank you Bill. That E-Trek option has a lot of battery capacity - 8 AGMs I believe - and a 5KW inverter which by any other manufacturer's standards seems an overkill. But no one publishes any test results or figures apart from Earthroamer, who claim to be able to run the AC for 6-8 hours. So I'd be very interested to hear more from you!
Thanks again, Peter


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Old 07-21-2014, 03:08 AM   #12
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Congratulations Bill. I too considered the E-Trek, but it was just coming out at the time and there weren't any in my area to even look at. I got the AI because I figured there will always be something new just over the horizon, and didn't want to be forever in wait mode. I'm really looking forward to reading how the E-Trek compares to the AI. Good luck!
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Old 07-21-2014, 05:13 PM   #13
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Things I considered recently while checking out the Roadtrek:

No tank heaters. Need those for soccer tournaments in the late fall.
No seat belts for the seats over the rear wheel. Said no place to anchor.
No pre-wire for a front TV. Rear TV swings out so viewable from front.
No macerator motorized retractable hose.
Smaller A/C-11K vs 13.5K. However the salesman stated that he and his family made a trip the summer in New Orleans and it was "entirely adequate".

I like the idea of using an engine mounted generator to charge the eight batteries and a big inverter to power everything. Also using diesel fuel for heating and hot water.

Was mildly curious about going w/ a 24V battery system.

Need to look at one in person to see how quality measures up.

Get some pics up when you get it. Did you get the Li-ion or a cost if not?

Congrats and looking forward to comparisons.
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Old 07-21-2014, 06:41 PM   #14
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Li-ion no longer offered.

Tank heaters can be retrofitted by my dealer IF i feel worth it or necessary. Never used them last year and we never went out when it was below freezing during the nite and day.

Never used the front TV anyway, banged my hed on it many times getting into front seats.

I agree no seat belt on side seats but much more comfortable when laying down the seats into the bed. No mechanism sticking up almost 2" into sleeping area. With no mechanism they cannot legally have those loose cushions which we prefer and we had the half wardrobe on the AI and now also on the RT so only loose one seat on the left side.

Not a fan of the motorized hose retract for the macerator. Found it difficult to make sure it was overlapping properly when rewound. The RT just pushes back into a big flat pan.

I was going originally with the Alde propane heat-hot water but just changed that over to the Webasto diesel on Saturday. Now we an go thru tunnels in Boston and Baltimore since we will have no propane.

Very happy about using a quiet Mercedes engine to create power to charge the battery system. Takes about 30-50 minutes to bring discharged batteries back into normal, not full, usage. And with no propane generator hanging underneath its much quieter since the Mercedes is at an idle and the Onan is on full speed when running.

We are giving up some quality on cabinetry but that's OK. Did you read my full post at the top of this page? I've posted other comments about the differences. And once I have it in about 6+ weeks I'll post more details and pictures.

And, it'd be a plain boring world if we all liked and drove black Fords.
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