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Old 06-06-2013, 08:44 PM   #1
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Unhappy Emotional side of not buying an AS?

My husband is in the military, and we were considering full-timing in an Airstream, as some friends of ours do in an SOB (?).

So we found a '78 28-footer hundreds of miles away, and it seemed to "feel" right. Mechanically sound, really trusted the guy and it looked like it just needed cosmetic work.

We bought plane tickets so my husband could fly out and drive it back this weekend. At the last minute, the seller acted really anxious about our payment terms (we have plenty of money to pay for it, but didn't realize he needed actual $10,000 in cash) and we couldn't access our money that fast. And everything felt bad. We had had sort of a wonderful, magical feeling out on a ranch in the middle of nowhere...our little girl even petted her first cow and horse on the trip!

It was a big decision to think about full-timing. I was nervous, but excited, but perhaps just on the fence enough that this pushed me over to the other side.

Anyone have any words of consolation?
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Old 06-06-2013, 08:53 PM   #2
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If it felt wrong, it probably was wrong. Keep looking and you will find another one that was meant for you.
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Old 06-06-2013, 08:59 PM   #3
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Sorry for that experience. Can you say more about why it felt bad as the terms of the transaction morphed a bit? If you agreed on a price and could swing it in one fell swoop a few days later, would that still have felt bad? Just wondering.

I agree that the right one is out there at the right time. Good luck and thanks for your family's sacrifices for our freedom!
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Old 06-06-2013, 09:01 PM   #4
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I agree, my first two attempts failed, and looking back I am very very thankful, one was because of mold issues ( I backed out as I was there to pick up) , second was just too much AS for my needs.( deposit was made at dealer, I got it back.)Now all is fine. If I ever decide to go bigger and brand new, I will go back to that dealer, he was fantastic with me.
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Old 06-06-2013, 09:16 PM   #5
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So-o-o-o-o much better to be safe than sorry!

Check out the list of inspectors to help you to avoid added unnecessary travel expense.

Keep looking--I'm sure "The One" is out there waiting for you!
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Old 06-06-2013, 09:19 PM   #6
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SteveSueMac, I think this guy made us feel really confident in buying an Airstream, intellectually and emotionally. In all honesty I probably was at 51% to go ahead, and then when he seemed to act so strange at the last minutem he pushed me to 49% and I got too emotional about it. I felt like we had made a good faith gesture in purchasing plane tickets to get there, but he wasn't showing the same in us? All of a sudden he said he had lots of people waiting to buy it, when 5 days ago he told us to take our time.

On my side, maybe also because I am not 100% convinced I am ready to get that small? We have a ton on our plates and I am scared? Could be a possibility.
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Old 06-06-2013, 09:22 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rsknuts View Post
My husband is in the military, and we were considering full-timing in an Airstream, as some friends of ours do in an SOB (?).

So we found a '78 28-footer hundreds of miles away, and it seemed to "feel" right. Mechanically sound, really trusted the guy and it looked like it just needed cosmetic work.

We bought plane tickets so my husband could fly out and drive it back this weekend. At the last minute, the seller acted really anxious about our payment terms (we have plenty of money to pay for it, but didn't realize he needed actual $10,000 in cash) and we couldn't access our money that fast. And everything felt bad. We had had sort of a wonderful, magical feeling out on a ranch in the middle of nowhere...our little girl even petted her first cow and horse on the trip!

It was a big decision to think about full-timing. I was nervous, but excited, but perhaps just on the fence enough that this pushed me over to the other side.

Anyone have any words of consolation?
Magical Feeling - Your magical feeling at this moment should be "WHEW - We dodged a MESS!"

It's a very reasonable guess that the owner wanted CASH really fast was so he could disappear with it before you found out what you really had bought. Odds you were looking at a cosmetically "staged" airstream that had rotton floors, mice in the walls, and a rusty frame held together with hope and force of habit.

If you haven't done a ton of studying this forum - and gotten your hands dirty looking at 15 or 20 used Airstreams - you don't want to try to buy used and just hit the road.

There are some VERY fine restorers both amateur and professional, but there are also some serious hacks. I remember a picture not so long ago where a rotten floor was replaced... by cutting it close to the edges and only replacing the center. Problem? Nothing was holding the shell down but gravity and a few screws, the shell and the floor must join together with the frame for a sound repair. The whole repair had to be done over - and this one was done this way by a "professional" RV repair shop.
I would buy a Vintage only from the well known and highly regarded vintage shops listed on this forum, or
a unit that had been thoroughly inspected and approved by the owner of one of them, and then preferably if it had been built under the instruction of one of these masters.

[COLOR="Green"]For you:

I wouldn't give this advice to 9 out of 10 people - but somehow I think your case is different. BUY NEW OR NEARLY NEW - and go to a reputable DEALER who will SealTest the unit and guarantee the floor and systems above and beyond the Airstream 2 year. Finance the thing if you need to - but get a unit that will take minimal regular annual maintenance so you have the time to travel with and spend time with your kids.

The Airstreams tow better hands down. They are a bit more forgiving in stressful situations where you have to lock up the wheels or swerve to avoid a deer - you keep the shiney side up! They also don't disintegrate into their component parts if they're in a "fender bender" which many SOB's do. BUT they have leaking issues if they're not regularly re-sealed and they have filoform corrosion if you live near the ocean as I do.

If you get a new or nearly new one, you can sell it in six months if full-timing turns out to be a nightmare... or if it's been great but you're yearning for bricks and boards. You also won't be worrying about constant breakdowns or getting stuck for weeks waiting for a repair.

You'd take a hit on the price but your kids safety is IMPORTANT.

Sincerely,

Paula
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Old 06-08-2013, 12:13 PM   #8
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Well thanks to everyone again! Foiled Again, we are awaiting confirmation of our offer on a 1991 29ft Excella. Cost twice as much but looks like a lot less work. Wish us luck!
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Old 06-08-2013, 12:38 PM   #9
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You have great taste.....says the owner of a 29 ft 1991 Excella!
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Old 06-08-2013, 01:27 PM   #10
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Don't trust instincts or nice guys selling RVs. Airstreams can be full of problems. Get someone who knows these things inside and out to inspect it for you. Otherwise you may be shocked how much its really going to cost you.

doug k
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Old 06-08-2013, 02:40 PM   #11
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Paid in cash for mine. When I want to buy something I comply with seller's terms. Asking for cash is never a deal breaker for me. When dealing with strangers, either buying or selling, I prefer cash. When I show up to buy a stranger's vehicle, I only show up with cash.

In fact I show the seller my cash when I'm negotiating. It's a buyer's advantage every time.
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Old 06-09-2013, 08:42 AM   #12
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Thanks Splitrock. If he would have told us that four days earlier while we were standing on his property, we would have had plenty of time to get to the cash. As it was we didn't know we were going to be driving the 600 miles there to buy one in the first place...it just sort of happened after a local search.

Dkottum, do you know of a link here on the forums where I can find someone to do an inspection?
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Old 06-09-2013, 09:12 AM   #13
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Click on the Portal tab at the top of the page. Then you will see the Inspectors links on the right side of the page toward the bottom. Select your area, and it will give you a list of Inspectors......
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Old 06-09-2013, 09:34 AM   #14
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Our trailer might be the one..

We purchased our '78 28 foot Overlander 3 years ago and have loved (almost) every minute of getting her ready for the first maiden voyage after one year. Some of the updates we have done were cosmetic and some were mechanical. We are currently considering parting with our trailer in hopes of getting one just a bit bigger. Are you still looking for this model? If so, please call and we can talk. 218-591-9975. We have our trailer listed for sale on this site.
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