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Old 06-01-2014, 05:24 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by Len n Jeanne View Post
I wonder how many of us happy with our Bambi are former tent campers? We tent camped for many years.

Speaking of small, we feel pretty smug when chatting with Casita or Scamp owners. Now that's tiny!
Good point! I AM a former tent camper, and I DID consider Casita, Scamp, even T@Bs! Compared to all those the 16 is huge!
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Old 06-01-2014, 11:48 PM   #58
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Thanks-- and no disrespect to folks who want or can afford a bigger trailer. Full-timing, grandkids, and a couple of Bernese mountain dogs would be a different calculus.

In our case, money wasn't the object so much as a camping philosophy. We were both sort of bothered by the thought of hauling a full-sized kitchen and sitting room down the highway. Since the Big White Boxes on wheels became so popular, the whole tenor of campground camping has changed. Now camping is more like being in a city than back to nature-- unless we head for sites less accessible to the jolly jumbos. We wanted a camping experience more like the old style of outdoor living, but minus rocks in our backs and having to pack up a wet tent in the morning.

We don't have a couch, but at night, basically, the bed is mine for reading, Internetting, or DVD-watching (there's a drop-down tray-table,) and the dinette bed is Len's, mostly for reading. If it's a rainy day, then we both make do with the dinette table up and the seating area.

We store all kinds of camping gear in the back of our truck, so storage space isn't a problem.

Strange, but the Scamp and Casita owners we talk to are very proud of their little rigs, even though they are much narrower and have lower ceilings than the AS sixteeners. (Len finds them claustrophobic.) Some of them weigh as little as 1200 pounds, and have little kitchens, though often minus the wet bath and two-bed option, which are important in our case.
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Old 06-03-2014, 06:30 AM   #59
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Rich,
I know what you mean. We were intrigued by the T@Bs, but once we saw them in person at the R V show, the mere idea was completely claustrophobic to me. I couldn't even bring myself to get into it. Not happening. Would rather sleep in the car than trapped in one of those.

Jeanne, your sentiments are ones we also consider. As in why bother if you are "at home" completely in the camper.

The 16 we did see felt a bit like the dorm room, in an sweetly nostalgic way. We do like the layout and size of the 16, but I just worry about the tanks. I think once we see the other 3, we will know.
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Old 06-03-2014, 08:16 AM   #60
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Len n Jeanne View Post
Thanks-- and no disrespect to folks who want or can afford a bigger trailer. Full-timing, grandkids, and a couple of Bernese mountain dogs would be a different calculus.



In our case, money wasn't the object so much as a camping philosophy. We were both sort of bothered by the thought of hauling a full-sized kitchen and sitting room down the highway. Since the Big White Boxes on wheels became so popular, the whole tenor of campground camping has changed. Now camping is more like being in a city than back to nature-- unless we head for sites less accessible to the jolly jumbos. We wanted a camping experience more like the old style of outdoor living, but minus rocks in our backs and having to pack up a wet tent in the morning.



We don't have a couch, but at night, basically, the bed is mine for reading, Internetting, or DVD-watching (there's a drop-down tray-table,) and the dinette bed is Len's, mostly for reading. If it's a rainy day, then we both make do with the dinette table up and the seating area.



We store all kinds of camping gear in the back of our truck, so storage space isn't a problem.



Strange, but the Scamp and Casita owners we talk to are very proud of their little rigs, even though they are much narrower and have lower ceilings than the AS sixteeners. (Len finds them claustrophobic.) Some of them weigh as little as 1200 pounds, and have little kitchens, though often minus the wet bath and two-bed option, which are important in our case.

Len n Jeanne

I've been following this thread. And, while I feel that anyone contemplating an airstream (which model - size etc.) needs to spend several hours at a dealership sizing them up. I agree with your views on camping and your reasons for your choice.

Laurie and I met on one of the pack horse trips I used to work many years ago. She and two friends were guests and she loved the whole camping thing which impressed me enough to spend the rest of my life with her. However, after years of tent camping, horseback camping etc. we decided a change was needed and comfort was the reason.

There were so many things I loved about your 16' .... They're just plain cool. And, going from a tent to anything with a bed and fridge was going to be awesome. We, like you, share a similar philosophy on camping vs cramping or glamping and enjoy remote boon docking.

We wanted to have some comforts while maintaining the appeal of the outdoors. In the end we settled on our 19' for a number of reasons, but, I'm sure if we had purchased a 16', we'd have loved it also.

Like many others, for us, it was about mobility and keeping it small, knowing that we'd be more apt to use it a lot, Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByAirstream Forums1401801381.939769.jpg
Views:	125
Size:	439.4 KB
ID:	213396which, we do. We cook almost every meal outside, have a "real"campfire every night and don't mind a sponge bath.

I admire people like you that don't obsess over the little things and enjoy your rig! In the end size doesn't matter.... Enjoying what you have does!
Happy camping.
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Old 06-03-2014, 12:54 PM   #61
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Cannonball?

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Originally Posted by Cannonball View Post
We live near Trinity University, downtown. The "Cannonball" moniker is the name my wife selected for the Airstream, based on shape, appearance, etc..
I could see the 16 as a cannonball ... our 22s are more like one heck of a large caliber shell.

Early in our marriage we lived LITERALLY in downtown, north of Hildebrand and I think it was Main? Way east of you, I believe. Goats and chickens in the yards down the street. I'm sure it's all changed now.
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Old 06-03-2014, 07:21 PM   #62
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I'll go with "large caliber shell". We are loud & proud. The 'hood is gentrified, but still have chickens a block or two over. I'll try and grab a photo and send it to you for old time's sake.

Take care, and camp on!
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Old 06-03-2014, 08:27 PM   #63
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Love the small tanks and combined black/gray in the 16. The non-Airstream we used to have had three HUGE tanks (total almost 100 gallons in an 18 foot trailer!). The massive weight of a full tank and its teeter-totter effect on tongue weight helped underscore how smartly Airstreams are designed. Our old trailer was like a collection of parts randomly bolted together, while the Airstream is clearly a product of more intelligent design. And the quality difference is astounding.

Yes, you can fill the 16's tanks quickly if not careful. But the self-sufficiency, the planning, the taking control of our own situation....that's all part of the mystique for me. People camp off the back of motorcycles for months on end, for cryin' out loud! If I can't do the same in a 16-foot Airstream, I've got a problem!

Yes, as we get older camping might morph into more of a luxury lounging activity and we'll want a bigger trailer with more comforts. For now--and not too many years removed from the 4x8 teardrop I pulled on several cross-country trips and was quite happy with--we're overjoyed with our humble Sport 16.
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Old 06-04-2014, 08:09 AM   #64
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Ah, we return to page one. The 16 has a bigger bed than a 19. Not much, but bigger. 16 has a bathroom that if you don't wish to use campground facilities look at a bigger unit because the bathroom is NOT a retreat, it is a step above having a Thetford Porta Potty stuffed under a seat.

If you are a tent camper it IS glamping. If you are a pop-up camper user it is a step up. If you are a teardrop unit user it is a step sideways and allows you to stand vertically (is that up?). If you like a hotel room on wheels look at something else.

High points of 16:

Excellent layout

Fabulous front window

Usable kitchen with more counter than a 19 (why did they put the stupid extra sink in the 19 ruining kitchen counter space when that sink is 2 steps away from the other?)

Light and able to be pulled by a huge number of vehicles

Easy to maneuver

Decent storage if you don't mind occasionally going outside to access the rear door

Easy to store (needs a 10 foot high door though)

Price point is hard to beat if you want an Airstream

Cute (do I lose my "Guy Card" for saying that?)


Biggest detractors:

You better love your partner (there ain't room if you don't)

The bathroom is tiny and wet (but it DOES work)

The combined tank is small, OK tiny, (boondocking is still easier than a tent)

You WILL spend a great deal of time showing it to people (if you don't like people this is a pain, I hang Christmas lights made from shotgun shells and a pair of dead plastic flamingos hanging from the awning and there are STILL peeps that want a tour, go figure)


Those that tell you to go way bigger (23-25 or more) probably don't abide the tiny john, climb over bed and the need to do things like use a slop bucket, etc. THEY HAVE A POINT. To me that is all part of camping, to them they don't want to waste additional time they could be enjoying other camping things. It's all in your view. And neither is right or wrong. And you can change your mind later. Who cares if some ignoramous says "I told you so"? Quite frankly I would not mind having 2. The 16 for longer trips due to it's frugalness and a 20 for more of a luxury weekend outing........(see, it's all how you look at it!)
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Old 06-04-2014, 09:31 AM   #65
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Excellent bath/shower

The only things I would take issue with are toilet (step above a porta potty), bathroom (always wet). Perhaps they changed them in 2014, but re my 2012 model:

The toilet is full size and comfortable to use. It is a porcelin toilet, far from a porta potty. The seat is a bit on the thin side, but that doesn't affect its comfort.

Wet all the time? I keep mine dry with very little effort. Having a wooden mat keeps your feet off the floor and allows it to dry on its own. Yes, its small, but I'll bet its easier to keep clean than a separate bath and shower, if only because it's less real estate. But as you said, it's all in how you look at it. I've taken 13 or 14 trips in mine so far, as well as using for a spare room, and this is my experience.
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Old 06-04-2014, 08:24 PM   #66
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Renderit and Rich,
I am listening. DH is a larger guy, and he didn't find the bath size in the 16 a problem. Because he can actually stand up in it, and the door opens W I D E.

He has some concerns that the bath on the 19 (which we still have not seen in person) has such a small door opening that he will only be able to exit and enter by squeezing sideways. That actually makes the 16 bath a more functional choice for him.

We did see a 20 in person the day we saw the 16. He liked the bath on the 16 better.

Changing topics to windows and how they differ....on the older style 16s with the pano window by the bed. Do any of those windows open? It is hard to see in pictures. And since those are not sports, but international models (at least the ones for sale I have seen) how else do they differ? Trying to understand why a 6-8 year old non-sport 16 costs as much as a new sport 16. Can someone with the knowledge of the features point them out please?

Thanks to everyone who is participating. This is very helpful indeed!
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Old 06-05-2014, 12:52 AM   #67
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Your Hub's concerns regarding the size of the opening to access the bath in the 19 are justified. I found it equally difficult to squeeze through the opening front-ways or sideways. My wife called it a deal-breaker.

The center window in the rear of my trailer opens pretty much just like the one in the front. It is designated as an emergency exit, and has a quick-release pull tab that allows you to quickly remove the screen. If it matters to you, the curved windows on either side are not tinted like the center one is. I would love to know why AS did this.

One of the best features of my trailer are the pair of panoramic windows. Unfortunately you can't get them both on the 16s anymore.

Some of the other things I've noticed that are different (off of the top of my head) on my older model 16 compared with today's Sport model include:

Different interior style
Frosted window in door
Portal window in bathroom door
Bathroom door is perpendicular to the entry door vs. parallel
Unique aluminum wheels
Exterior badging
No microwave oven
Electric hitch jack
Aluminum propane tank cover
Polished rear bumper with storage

I can't really explain how much we like all of the light that we get from all of the windows during the daytime. The view is great and you really feel more like you're outdoors. I didn't get that feeling in the Sport 16s.

The listed prices of older 16s does NOT accurately reflect what the market will bear. Based on my observation many sellers overestimate the real value of their 16' trailer significantly.
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Old 06-05-2014, 06:28 AM   #68
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Rich, I never used the shower in my bathroom yet.

That does not change the fact it is a "wet" bath. The 19 has a "dry" bath. That was my point. Yes, the throne is much nicer than a Thetford, I said it was a step up. Probably because of my choice of words you missed the point, sorry!

I am not tall (5-7), but perhaps a bit wider than optimum. The bath is very small and cramped. My point is it still works great. I consider it as an emergency bath and extra closet rather than a comfortable bath.

I don't go camping for the bathrooms though, and it beats the facilities in a tent by a hundred miles!

The back window on THE ONLY 16 YOU CAN BUY NEW is a great size, but the vent window in it is a joke. Hence I find the air circulation in the bed area to be lacking without additional fan blowing at the inside occupant. The roof vent fan will pull the air from the back window right across the outside occupant and there is an eddy at the head of the other who is stuck with their head by the closet. It is readily corrected with a small fan(s), but if you have no inverter you better have a battery one as well for boondocking.

Several others with Sport Bambis have emailed me and told me they have the same trouble when I was lambasted for this statement before. If you buy used and can get that wrap around back window you would have over 10x the air exchange area and probably would not even need the roof vent fan.

Please forgive me if I sound a bit testy here. I have discovered there are many on this site who will suffer NO discussion saying any Airstream has anything other than rainbows and puppies flowing out of the waste tanks. There are design flaws and concessions in many of them. I prefer to go into this knowing some of them as I hope the originator of this thread does. I won't sugar coat it.

I would buy my 16 Sport again in a second. For the way we camp, including several week trips, it is a great solution. We love the way it is set up and we are overcoming all of the flaws and concessions. But it is far from perfect.
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Old 06-05-2014, 07:00 AM   #69
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Thanks. DH keeps lamenting on WHY they don't have a 19 or 20 with the superb layout of the 16 and 3 more feet. We honestly do like the bed under a window in the orientation of the 16, and the table under a window like the 16 has. And DH likes the better headroom in the 16 bath, even if it is a wet bath. (Nobody puts Baby in the corner-LOL)

Is the physics of towing and tank load distribution, and underbelly puzzle piece layout dictating that the 19, 20 and 22 with the larger tanks all have the rear bath location?

Wouldn't a 20 with a longer galley kitchen with more counter space on 1 side, and a toilet and shower (no sink needed) in the mid be just ideal?

And what is a fair market price on a used 16 international? How can you find out info to negotiate?

And given the 16 international with pano windows and bath door on the dining side, vs new 16 sport with standard windows, porcelain toilet, and bath door on the galley side, what are the thoughts on that? To me and what I will be able to see and touch, those seem to be the primary layout differences.
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Old 06-05-2014, 07:19 AM   #70
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Interesting and very observant question. My better half hated the bath on the 16's we looked at prior to this and they seemingly only had the door shift. She saw our new one and all of a sudden was willing to buy. I didn't think that badly of the bath door the other way and certainly would have preferred the wrap window in the bed area had I noticed the screened area difference. I may have overlooked that because I had not slept in it and probably would have said, "what a waste to put a panoramic window over the bed".

But....I probably would have passed on it as too expensive. And I have NEVER seen one used, but was not really looking much in the used category when we bought the current unit as the dealership was supposed to call us on any that came in for the last 2 years and never did. I doubt there were not any for sale, I just think we always got lazy salesmen.
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