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Old 04-07-2006, 11:50 AM   #1
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1996 28' Excella
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Hello - hunting for MOHO!

I've been reseraching this forum for a while now, and I thought I'd say Hi.

I'm looking to buy a Classic Airstream MH, and I'm just trying to figure out how, which one, etc. This site has been a huge help. I can't imagine doing this kind of reasearch before the internet.

I think I like the 250 with the rear queen/double the best. There is a 1982 280 right here in town in the classifieds that is real nice, but it has twin beds. My wife wants a rear bed for us (married 8mos.) I like the 290's as well, but anything bigger is too big for me.

I've been looking at RVtrader.com, rvonline.com, ebay, this site, Fred's Archives, airstream.com, craigslist, and Google. Is there any other way to find what I'm looking for? If you happen to know of someone thinking of selling a great MH, send them my way.

I'm sure I'll be a regular here once I land something, until then...

Thanks in advance.

-Kevin
Portland, OR
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Old 04-07-2006, 02:02 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forums. I think the 280 is the perfect size and spent a year searching for the right one. I would have loved to have found a twin bed configuration but found one with a double and a desk instead. We've been married 36 years and I guess it does not matter that much anymore. I have grown attached to the desk and will not take it out plus we also like the larger closets it gives us. The nice thing about these coaches is that you are able to change things around. We took out the double bed and made it a single. We also took out the fold out sofa bed in front a replaced that with a single bed and removable pillows for driving. I sleep in front or back and my wife sleeps in the other bed, depends on who goes to bed first. Our grandson who is often with us will take the back bedroom when he is with us. There are people here on the forum who have constructed full size beds in the place of the twins in trailers, we have more headroom in the MH so that would be easier to do. I am posting a link for you, just be careful he does not find out you are looking at an Airstream for sale he may buy it out from underneath you, he seems to be cornering the market on used Airstreams. He converted a twin to a full in a 25' trailer.
Good luck to you and happy hunting. The right coach is waiting for you.
http://www.balrgn.com/
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Old 04-07-2006, 03:13 PM   #3
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Kevin,
Welcome. The best advice I can give you for your search is to make a short list of what you want out of your motorhome. Then get into as many floorplans as possible and see what works for your camping needs.

For example, will it always be just the two of you? How many do you need to sleep regularly, occasionally. Will you use it mostly on the weekends or will you "live aboard" for months or years at a time?

regarding the bedroom, as funny as it sounds a rear bedroom queen layout makes it pretty hard for the person sleeping in the back to get up and over the other person for a midnight potty break (or snack ). On the other hand, rear bedroom coaches generally have huge wrap around windows which really open up the back and make sleeping (or napping) a true camping experience.

Chaplain Kent is very right about the appeal many of us find in changing things around a little. That's part of the fun of ownership. However, it's not very practical to change a rear bath unit into a mid bath unit or move the fridge from curbside to streetside, etc if you change your mind later on. But a rear queen unit can be changed to doubles later on without breaking the bank.

My point is that choosing the right overall floorplan is based on what you plan to do with your coach. We began looking at 280's and ended up wth a HUGE 345. Like you I had no interest in the larger coaches, but now after owning it for four years I can't imagin getting by with anything smaller. (We're weekenders with three young children, along with the occasional friend and two dogs).

Good luck in your search and keep us posted or ask questions along the way if you need advice.
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Old 04-07-2006, 06:59 PM   #4
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Hey! I don't have that many ...
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Old 04-07-2006, 07:14 PM   #5
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Ditto on the welcome aboard. Size is about use. I find that at 28' My rig can be parked in any single parking space where an overhang can be accomodated. Matter of fact I'm overhanging a grassy area right now in a Wal-Mart in Winston-Salem, NC right now. I can wiggle into and out of almost any spot, always watching my corners and overhead clearance.
Keep a close eye on all the places you mentioned. Sooner or later you'll find what you're looking for.
Go look at any MoHo unit for sale that is convenient for you to look at. You'll get used to what is "usual" and what is not. If you don't regularly get your hands into the grease and grim make sure you find someone to check out your prospetive unit before making a commitment.
I tell folks, "you have to kiss a lot of frogs."
You will learn a lot here and by looking at all the different units that will come up for sale soon. Be ready! If you need more cash than what you have on hand make your arrangements now. The rig you fall in love with may be gone if you have to wait for your money.
Enjoy the hunt!
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Old 04-07-2006, 07:48 PM   #6
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Good stuff, thanks.

I race motorcycles, and right now I have a V6 Tacoma that pulls a 6x12 Wells Cargo stuffed with tools, tires, and 3 bikes. I throw a twin futon in the canopy, bring some camping gear, and I'm good for a weekend of racing.

Now that I'm married, the wife (princess) is not too hip on the "futon in the back of the truck" idea. She won't even go anymore if it's a 3 day event. Plus all my fellow racers have crazy money brand new 40' D-pushers.

My first thought was to upgrade my 10yr old Taco with a new diesel, then buy an airstream trailer (I've always wanted one) and put the bikes in the back of the truck. Or buy a toy hauler and a new truck. I can't put $30k worth of bikes and tools out in the open in a truck, and I hate the looks, feel, smell, idea of a toy hauler. Plus I'd have to drive a huge diesel to work every day, sell my Tacoma, sell the Wells, etc.

Voila - keep the trailer I have, keep the truck I have, and get a A/S MoHo!
I'd spend ~$20k instead of $50k. -it just makes sense.

As for the twin beds; If we got twin beds, it would be me, the wife, and the dog in one twin, and the other would be empty. I just think the rear big beds are more cozy. I'd have to crawl over her to get out anyway with a twin.

I sure would like to think that it's just going to be the three of us (dog), but she has baby fever x5, and I'm sure it won't be long. That will just give me a reason to upgrade, or better yet, add another arrow to the quiver.

I happen to be a mortgage broker, so the financing is handled. I just have to find a good deal now.
The problem with the local unit is that it's the first one I've looked at, and even though it might be a great deal, it just didn't feel right. I don't want to ever regret that I didn't look long enough, learn enough, or just wait for that perfect unit. I think I want something that has all the original equipment. something that hasn't been "molested". Or, at least I want to be the one doing the molesting.

I'm thinking that I need to befriend someone at Marathon or some big D-pusher dealer and wait for a trade-in, or some sweetheart deal from someone I know.
Thanks for your imput, and OMG balrgn there's a lot of links on your website!

-Kevin
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Old 04-08-2006, 02:57 AM   #7
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I like the looks and layout of the 1990 250. There are two that I've found online, and they're both asking about $30k. NADA says about $20k. would I be a sucker to buy at about $28k? do any of you know the value of this year/model?
thanks again,
Kevin
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Old 04-08-2006, 04:58 AM   #8
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Be aware when you do your inspections on an older unit. There are tons of things to consider. One persons repair may be your nightmare to recover from.
Good luck on your quest!!!
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Old 04-08-2006, 08:01 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by outofcontrol
I like the looks and layout of the 1990 250. There are two that I've found online, and they're both asking about $30k. NADA says about $20k. would I be a sucker to buy at about $28k? do any of you know the value of this year/model?
thanks again,
Kevin
Now that AS has decided to not make the Classic again or any Class A Motor Home for that matter the value of our coaches will be going up. NADA is a guide and the price really depends on condition. Unlike buying a Chevy or Ford there are not a lot of these on the market so prices will vary. There is a list of people here on the forum willing to inspect a motor home in other parts of the country and send you pictures. Here is the link to the thread:
http://www.airforums.com/forum...ght=inspectors
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Old 04-08-2006, 05:24 PM   #10
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Rear bedroom MoHo

I think you ought to get a 1989 370 like the 15 other people who bought them when they were produced ! I have one, and there are 3 others on the Forum. None of us would trade ours for anything. I love the large rear bedroom with the wrap-around windows. Some have twin beds; mine has the island queen. Love that setup, but like several have said, you have to decide what will work for you. The length of the 370 has not been a problem for me, but maybe it's because I'm used to pulling a 30' trailer with a Suburban. The MoHo actually is about 13' shorter than that, and I find it easier to park and maneuver than the trailer combo. Anyway, welcome to the best Forum and finest people I've dealt with. Someone is always willing to help. Let us know when you finally get one!

Best,
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Old 04-08-2006, 05:38 PM   #11
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OUTOFCONTROL---Kevin

I bought a 1988 Classic 290 (29 ft) about two years ago with most of options and 56,000 miles on it for $18,800. I was looking for a 290 or 250 for a year and half before I found this deal----Either model is very hard to find and is usually a sellers market---patients paid in my case.

Anyway, mine is NOT for sale, but if you wanted to take an up close look at one, you would be welcome to look at mine. I live in Wasco, Or.---about 100 miles east or Portland just off of I84. Let me know!

Good luck on your hunt-----Bob
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Old 04-08-2006, 06:27 PM   #12
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Found a 1981 big silver Airstream MOHO in a small Oklahoma town today. I think it's a diesel, but I can't be certain. Don't know anything about it except it's for sale. I will be back down by it in a week and would be happy to find out all I can if you are interested. There was a "For Sale" sign in the window.
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Old 04-08-2006, 08:22 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by outofcontrol
.....I race motorcycles, and right now I have a V6 Tacoma that pulls a 6x12 Wells Cargo stuffed with tools, tires, and 3 bikes. I throw a twin futon in the canopy, bring some camping gear, and I'm good for a weekend of racing....
Ummm....

Be advised that most of the AS MoHo's are rated to pull only 2,000 lbs max.

There has been much speculation about the reason for this, but it is a limitation put in the woner's manual, and is also placarded on the interior of the units.
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Old 04-08-2006, 08:34 PM   #14
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I'd love to know how NADA gets the values when Airstream makes 15 units a year (250's and 370's) and they rarely sell. I guess they take the original sales price and build in a depreciation schedule. Only problem is that not all RV's depreciate at the same rate. The classic MH's are holding steady, increasing in some cases, and/or declining very slowly right now. Another variable is the end of Airstream MH's all together. The 250's have been in the $30-40k range for some time.
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