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Old 05-30-2014, 06:25 PM   #43
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RFR36...thanks for the info


Jeanne....It's not off topic at all. What goes around comes around eventually.


Belbien...OK you have my attention.

If you had a do-over right now today. Your money back in the bank. No tow vehicle issues to contend with.
What would you buy and why?
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Old 05-31-2014, 09:30 AM   #44
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My thoughts on the 22' after enjoying it for seven years:

a) We've never had a problem with the tankage even boondocking. Yes, you need to be judicious in your useage and we carry a seven gallon water can if we need to replenish.

b) No problem for us to make a u-turn on the average road, but then we don't use sway control or WD.

c-d) Our older Sport does not have a step when the dinette is down. If it did, I would install a 3/4" foam board on each side to make it even. I am the one who needs to use the toilet more often so I sleep on the outside. The DW rarely crawls over and if she does it's no bother. We leave the dinette in the down position. The underneath space is ideal for storing outdoor furniture and the dog likes it to take refuge when it's thundering and lightning. Since we are camping we use sleeping bags instead of bedding. The space between the bed and the counter is used for storing two folding tables which are handy indoors or out.

e) We did.
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Old 05-31-2014, 04:27 PM   #45
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responses related to 2012 16' Sport

There are 2 of us, won't be traveling with pets, empty nesters, would camp at most for 7-10 days at once. We are very interested in National Park and NF campgrounds, so dry camping capacity is a factor.

THERE IS ONE OF ME, NO PETS, OCCASIONAL OVERNIGHT GUEST. The dining table does lower into a comfortable bed (my guests say its comfortable). Yes, the table is slightly higher than the seat benches, since it overlaps them. But the cushions are different thicknesses to compensate, so it is not a problem. BTW, I found the table fit too tightly near the stove/counter, so I cut off about 3 or four inches. Now I can slide in and out easily, and it did not adversely effect the bed.

Combined 21 gallon waste capacity makes me nervous if we would be dry camping for a week. We are pale Irish, and must wear a lot of sunscreen. So a shower before bed would be a necessity. JUST FINISHED 4 NIGHTS CAMPING. I took a shower each morning and yes, I was running close on water and waste. The fresh water is 23 gallons. I take bottled water for cooking/drinking so I needed to get rid of at least 2 gallons to avoid overflowing my 21 gallon dump tank. I scooped up as much sink water from doing dishes, as possible, and discreetly dumped that. There was no garbage in the water. SHOWERING: I have gotten used to showering sitting on the toilet set and find it easy to use. I mounted my shower head so I can grab it, turn it off and on, conserving water. The idea of having tubs in the bathroom to catch water seems awkward and inconvenient to me. I suppose the drain plug could be left in to catch some shower water, and it could be scooped up after. I use a wood slat floor grate, so I don't stand directly on the bathroom floor anyway. The shower is great, and hot water tank works very well.

Inverters not on the sports--what does that mean? IT HAS A CONVERTER TO PROVIDE 12 VOLTS TO THE LIGHTS AND SOCKET PLUGS WHEN NOT ON 120. An inverter would convert 12vdc to ac. As a result I cannot run my tv or use any of the standard 110/120 ac sockets when only using the battery for power. I have a tri-fuel 2400 watt Yamaha generator, which I use to recharge the battery and run my a/c, tv and/or electric convection oven.

1 battery vs 2. ONE BATTERY IS GOOD FOR ABOUT A DAY if you you have to run your heater most of the night (as I did recently). The battery that came with it had to be replaced after a year. I was a very low amp hour rated one. My replacement battery has worked well. Since I take my generator when dry camping, I will not add a second battery. Batteries are heavy. BTW THE 16' SPORT IS PREWIRED FOR SOLAR PANELS, WHICH CAN RECHARGE YOUR BATTERY. If you wanted to avoid taking a generator dry camping, adding a second battery would be fairly easy. Just cables and a new battery holder for two. Hook them up in parallel.

Propane tank capacity. COMES WITH 2 20LB TANKS. In 4 nights of using propane to cook with, heat with, and fuel my generator I did not run out. I was on the 2d tank, however. I believe 30 lbs tanks could be installed. It looks fairly simple to remove and replace the tank tray and buy a larger plastic tank cover.

Having the outdoor shower on the 16 by the door and under the awning seating area, vs on the back area on the other layouts. THIS PUTS IT UNDER THE INCLUDED AWNING AND NEAR THE DOOR. Haven't really used the outdoor feature, but it looks well thought out.

Awning size. KINDA SMALL. TOP OF THE DOOR RUBS IT WHEN OPENING, BUT HASN'T CAUSED A PROBLEM.

Window on the door. LARGE CURVED FRONT WINDOW IS CLOSE ENOUGH TO SEE WHO IS KNOCKING ON YOUR DOOR.

Oven vs microwave. GOOD QUESTION. I didn't get the optional mw.I thought $500 was outrageous. After over a year without one I ended up building my own aluminum rack and installing a Cuisinart convection oven. Food that I normally cook in a mv at home tastes so much better in the Cuisinart ($99 at Costco). It has several baking modes, including toasting. Has preheat, digital temp, and auto shutoff. I have baked pizza, cookies, toast, bagels, tv dinners. Anything a regular oven will cook seems to work. I don't miss the mw at all. You do need 110/120 ac for either a mw or an electric oven. It is prewired for a mw, with its own breaker' All I had to do was add the outlet in the cutoff up in the overheard storage bin. Keeps the cord out of site also.

How/where the windows open, and cross ventilation. 3 WINDOW OPENINGS: the center section in front of the dining table, the lower section of the sink window, and the lower right section of the rear window all open. With the dining window open you can get a good breeze going. Also, the fantastic fan overhead, a small ceiling fan in the bath and the a/c on fan only, can add outside air (well the bath actually blows stuff out, like steam and smells, of course).

Underbed storage. SOME SPACE INSIDE AND OUTSIDE. The bed "overhangs" a small area. On the sides of that space are the fuse/circuit breaker/converter and the propane heater vent. It is a handy space for shoes, extra water, etc.
There are also 2 doors leading to underbed storage. But it is more accessible from the outside rear of the AS. I keep hoses, sewer solution, and extra towels, etc. out there. It has outside locks.

Getting in and out of bed logistics for a couple. (size of the bed is not a problem, we are more interested in if the trapped-in person can get out of the bed without awakening the other sleeper.) PROBABLY A CHALLENGE FOR A COUPLE. But I know of couples who like this very trailer. The bed is the same length exactly as my queen size house bed. Just not as wide. MEMORY FOAM mattress topper is recommended. The mattress is very sturdy, but kinda hard. I bought a queen mem foam topper and cut it down to match. I sleep like a baby now.

Privacy while dressing. YES THERE IS, BELIEVE IT OR NOT. The accordion door between the mini-closet and the galley forms a curved space in front of the bed just large enough to stand and change...or sit on the edge of the bed and change. Just enough room and plenty of privacy.

Bathroom sink and is it large enough to shave or do makeup. FOR SHAVING yes. There is a mirrored cabinet in the bathroom also.

Tank capacity. COULD BE BETTER, but it does keep the weight down.

OTHER THOUGHTS: After almost 2 1/2 years I find I appreciate the compactness of my Sport 16. Yes, there are challenges. I am constantly thinking of ways to have less stuff. I like that I cannot just take everything with me when I travel. On the other hand, I almost always come back home with leftover used food. Less stuff means less to take care of, as well. I have swapped out 2 lights for LED bulbs to save on battery, and that has worked well so far (I originally replaced the entire fixtures but they went out after just a few months, so I put back the original fixtures and used LED bulbs instead...much better).

A smaller trailer is easier to tow and handle. While not a problem for you, anything bigger and I would have to trade in my Jeep (not an option...I like to do a little offloading too). Plus, a larger unit would not fit in my backyard like this one does. It makes a great extra bedroom. BTW I have house power to it with only a 20 amp breaker system, and it works fine. I run the a/c all the time. I bought a contractors 20 amp utility cord to run it out and installed a 20 amp breaker in my house panel. Don't know if that would be enough for a larger unit with a more powerful a/c. Probably not.

ONE OTHER DIFFERENCE: The Sport model is significantly lighter than other 16' models. Still not a problem for you most likely, but it probably handles easier and gets better mileage because of that.

"saving my pennies in my Piggy Bank" THE SPORT, while not cheap, will definitely require less piggy banks to empty.

HAVE FUN WHICHEVER ONE YOU GET!
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Old 05-31-2014, 06:45 PM   #46
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Ahab--thanks for that info. I am still learning all the model years and differences in layouts. Is yours the same as current 22? or the one with the back little desk and corner bath. How do you like the layout in what you have?

Rich--thank you for the detailed replies. I am particularly intrigued by your flooring/mat in the bath. Is this something you have a picture of? Did you buy it or make it to fit? Honestly the hubs like the 16 bath fine, I am the one that has the bigger issues. My issues are that I would most likely be the on obsessing about getting it dried out after a shower. And I would be concerned about water getting all over.

Oh the pennies...will need a lot in any event to be sure.
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Old 05-31-2014, 07:29 PM   #47
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Portable Shower Deck - Four Corners 70098 - Shower - Camping World
Above is a Camping World link to what I have. I only use half of it in my bathroom. Just removed the hinges, and later turned one of the slats for more stability (but used it just fine before that). It is just about the right height for comfortable standing or sitting, and keeps the floor material (plastic, fiberglas, whatever) from getting scratched up. It fits perfectly so it needs no installation.

Re drying after a shower. I thot this was going to be an issue, but it really isn't at all. If anything, it helps you keep the bathroom cleaner. There are two sliding cloth shower curtains, like those used in hotels. One slides across the aluminum outer wall (covering the toilet paper and holder in the process), and the other slides across the inside of the door. They are fastened by lines of velcro dots on the walls, and velcro strips on the curtains (this means you do not have to line up the dots perfectly).

So when you shower there are only the wall behind you and the wall to your left to get wet. I use a small white shop towel to wipe off the drips after I have finished showering and drying myself. There really are not many left. Plus a quick wipe over the medicine cabinet mirror is all that is needed. Remember, 3 of the four walls and the floor are coated with the white synthetic plastic-like material. Also the floor is really a shower pan with a drain and plug. If you get the wooden mat, no one will be getting the floor dirty. Extremely easy. If fact, sometimes I rinse around the toilet with the shower head just before I turn it off. Most of the water goes down the drain or up through the vent/fan as steam.

I have some friends who wanted to buy the Sport 16, but they just had to have a separate shower, so they got a larger model (a 22' I think...not the other Sport). Well, I have camped with them a couple times. Guess what? Their separate shower has become a storage closet. And by the looks of it, nothing they really need for camping. So to each their own. lol



Quote:
Originally Posted by Piggy Bank View Post
Ahab--thanks for that info. I am still learning all the model years and differences in layouts. Is yours the same as current 22? or the one with the back little desk and corner bath. How do you like the layout in what you have?

Rich--thank you for the detailed replies. I am particularly intrigued by your flooring/mat in the bath. Is this something you have a picture of? Did you buy it or make it to fit? Honestly the hubs like the 16 bath fine, I am the one that has the bigger issues. My issues are that I would most likely be the on obsessing about getting it dried out after a shower. And I would be concerned about water getting all over.

Oh the pennies...will need a lot in any event to be sure.
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Old 05-31-2014, 10:11 PM   #48
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Thanks Rick.

This gives me some great ideas to mull over.
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Old 06-01-2014, 08:53 AM   #49
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Ahab--thanks for that info. I am still learning all the model years and differences in layouts. Is yours the same as current 22? or the one with the back little desk and corner bath. How do you like the layout in what you have?
We have the first new Safari Sport '08. Does not have the wrap around windows or extra side window (also extra weight). Full dry bath. Front dinette makes into queen size bed which we leave as a bed. No desk. We love this layout as it's roomy for those rainy day's. There is a cubby for two folding tables between the bed and counter and they can be used indoors or out.
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Old 06-01-2014, 10:06 AM   #50
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Belbien...OK you have my attention.

If you had a do-over right now today. Your money back in the bank. No tow vehicle issues to contend with.
What would you buy and why?
I loved the 23.5, I think it's the Flying Cloud. It's a little wider than the 22' Sport. It has a regular dinette, as I recall, not the U dinette. And it has a great lounging area between the front dinette and the kitchen area. Again, this is all my recollection.

I really, really liked it. But it was at 99% of my towing capacity, and I just can't bring myself to fly that close to the edge.

By the way, we also bought bigger than we though we needed. I was ready to buy the 16 to maximize money and towing capacity. I figured--like someone said--it was like tent camping but with a really nice tent. Mi esposa estimada said no and pushed for the 22. Of course she won.

And she's the one who said, "Gee. It's kind'a small ..." Oh well. It's our baby now. I guess they're like boats or kids or dogs (or spouses?): you gotta learn to love them because of (not inspite of) all their peculiarities.
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Old 06-01-2014, 11:09 AM   #51
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We have the Sport 22FB. Wife, me, and dog. We love it. Gotta really keep the junk to a minimum, however. That is fine with us.
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Old 06-01-2014, 11:18 AM   #52
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We have the Sport 22FB. Wife, me, and dog. We love it. Gotta really keep the junk to a minimum, however. That is fine with us.

"Cannonball" makes me think you might be at Ft. Sam? What part of town do you guys live in? I grew up there from middle school through high school. Med. Center area.
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Old 06-01-2014, 11:24 AM   #53
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We live near Trinity University, downtown. The "Cannonball" moniker is the name my wife selected for the Airstream, based on shape, appearance, etc..
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Old 06-01-2014, 12:15 PM   #54
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Belbein,
Thanks for your response. As I have mentioned before, we don't have a dealer close by, so haven't been able to get inside very many units. Your answers will make us seriously consider the 23 as well. We are hoping to be able to see some over July 4th weekend when we will be visiting friends.

Ahab, thanks I know which layout you have now.

Cannonball, thanks for the response. Keeping the "junk" to a minimum is definitely part of the appeal of this for us. We moved to a different house last summer to simplify and minimize the impact of our possessions ruling our free time. Moved from a 1931 home and yard to a home built in the 1980s with HOA that does the lawn, leaves, and snow. Got our weekends back. And with our kids heading out on their own, we purged a lot of extra possessions as well. Very liberating and a stress reducer too.

So we don't want to pay for and manage more camper than we need, but just what we need, if that makes sense. But do want to right-size what we get so we aren't longing for more.
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Old 06-01-2014, 03:22 PM   #55
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Hmmmm.... I am wondering if we all buy the Airstream we want, then justify our selection (Goldilocks style) as "This one's too big, this one's too small.... this one is juuuust right."

I wonder how many of us happy with our Bambi are former tent campers? We tent camped for many years.

Just in defense (again) of the Little Guy--- happiness in a Bambi is really a question of judicious planning.

We just spent the month of April mostly boondocking in the Utah desert-- except for a couple of visits to friends and family. We carried a portable waste tank (which we never needed), a generator (which we never needed due to sparing the batteries,) plus a big jerry can of water & funnel (which we used periodically.) But in the 7 years that we've owned the Bambi, we've tried to get fresh water, electricity, propane, and waste water conservation down to a science.

We also travel with our medium-size dog. She sleeps under the bed unless we need to run the furnace.

Len routinely sleeps on the dinette bed: he gets claustrophobia on the inside of the bed, and I need several nightly loo-visits, so crawling over him isn't an option. Yes, the dinette table does leave a bit of a ledge, but the seat cushions are more than adequate to cushion it.

It would be nice to have a dry bath and more kitchen counter space, but I can't say these have ever been insurmountable inconveniences. It would be a bigger inconvenience if we had to park a bigger RV in a storage facility vs. at home, or buy a bigger truck to pull a bigger trailer. And there is the "old campground advantage." We reserved a lake-side campsite at the Lionhead CG at Priest Lake (northern Idaho) for later in June; and none of the sites by the water would take trailers longer than 18 feet.

I'd be happy with a bigger trailer, but Len is convinced that Bambi is his ultimate camping machine.

Speaking of small, we feel pretty smug when chatting with Casita or Scamp owners. Now that's tiny!
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Old 06-01-2014, 03:53 PM   #56
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Jeanne,

Thanks for the info on your long trip-- that would really be fun (someday when we retire!).

Impressed that you can dry camp that long. There certainly are some advantages to the 16s. We still may decide that getting the 16, and adding things to it may be more to our liking than going larger. DH really really liked the 16 we saw. But he is going on how it feels, and I am the one who has the talent for drilling down into the specs and differences and the analysis on that.

I would have to say that his comment about paying $25K for a couch about sums it up in his mind as to the difference between say the 16 and 23/25.

I grew up camping in a very tiny tent trailer, so have done that.

I think that we just are not all that decided on the question about are we camping or do we need/want a bit more than that.
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