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Old 06-26-2015, 07:22 PM   #1
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2015 27' Flying Cloud
Cedar Rapids , Iowa
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New AS

My dream for the past 10 years has been to own an AS. I have camped many nights in a pop up, traveled extensively in our 1984 VW Westfalia, but after all this time I have finally purchased my dream -a 27fb flying cloud. For a tow vehicle, by luck, or maybe nor you tell me, I found a 2014 GMC 1 ton diesel van. My question is, I purchased the camper in Oregon, I live in Iowa, I am going to pick up the AS in Oregon and bring it back to Iowa, I have nerver driven such a combination and quite frankly have a little case of anxiety. The AS is new and I will be puting a blue ox hitch on, now back to my question - any advice to someone who for the first time in their life is going to pull 40 feet of vehicle 2000 miles. Thanks
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Old 06-26-2015, 07:33 PM   #2
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Congratulations on your van and your AS.

When you get hooked up to the AS, just go slowly and get used to the feel of starting, stopping, turning, and backing. I'd suggest that you find an open parking lot to practice in before you hit the road. Once on the road, don't expect to keep up with the flow, use your mirrors to stay aware of what's coming up along side of you, and maintain a good distance between you and vehicles in front of you.

With that van, it's my opinion that you'll have a very easy tow.

Keep us posted, and have fun!!
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Old 06-26-2015, 07:44 PM   #3
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Mobile , Alabama
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Congrats on your new Airstream.
I can understand your concerns. We had the same worries when we towed ours back from NJ.
PaulnGina gives good advise on keeping it slow till you get the feel of towing with your setup.
Sometimes setting out on your return trip on a weekend may present you with a lighter traffic flow as you start back. Thus giving you one less thing to worry about. As you get an ideal how everything tows together.
Safe travels
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Old 06-26-2015, 08:40 PM   #4
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Right now, the best advice I can offer is to not take I-80 back to Iowa. The truck traffic is horrific. I'd go I-90, just for the piece of mind. We pulled ours out to Decorah and back.

When you leave, spend a few days in Oregon, getting comfortable with the trailer and towing. It's really not much different than towing anything else. Just remember to take the turns a little wide so you don't run the wheels up on a curb. If you're not comfortable backing a trailer, find a parking lot and practice a little. Assuming there will be two folks along, have the copilot guide you into any campsite that you need to back into. Ask the dealership about backing up with the weight distribution bars hooked up. Some hitches work better if the bars are not connected when backing.

Central Oregon has a number of really beautiful places to camp.

I live about 12 miles from Airstream Adventures NW, so if you need (and I am around), I may be able to help. If you're buying from Sutton, I don't think I can make it down there. Send me a PM if there is something I can do.

BTW, congrats on your new Airstream!!!


Quote:
Originally Posted by lkm4321 View Post
My dream for the past 10 years has been to own an AS. I have camped many nights in a pop up, traveled extensively in our 1984 VW Westfalia, but after all this time I have finally purchased my dream -a 27fb flying cloud. For a tow vehicle, by luck, or maybe nor you tell me, I found a 2014 GMC 1 ton diesel van. My question is, I purchased the camper in Oregon, I live in Iowa, I am going to pick up the AS in Oregon and bring it back to Iowa, I have nerver driven such a combination and quite frankly have a little case of anxiety. The AS is new and I will be puting a blue ox hitch on, now back to my question - any advice to someone who for the first time in their life is going to pull 40 feet of vehicle 2000 miles. Thanks
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Old 06-26-2015, 08:58 PM   #5
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I'm always careful where I stop for gas, even though I have lots of experience backing up, you can still get blocked in. If it was me I wouldn't worry about learning how to back up until I was comfortable pulling the trailer!



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Old 06-27-2015, 01:02 AM   #6
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Get a copy of "NextExit ", it will show where the gas stations with pull through are on all interstates. Google " how to back up a trailer?", it all starts with your hand in the 6 o'clock position, when you want the trailer to go left....read on. It gets easier, anxiety is the mother of learning. Roll on.
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Old 06-27-2015, 01:53 AM   #7
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Hi, I bought my trailer in Oregon about ten years ago and towed it back to Southern California; That was a bit less than half as far as you stated. The drive home and camping on the way will give you plenty of experience.
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Old 06-27-2015, 03:26 PM   #8
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Are you buying from Airstream Adventures in Portland? If so, ask for a "driving lesson" - they're very good about that. They will probably also offer you a coupon for a couple days stay at a local RV campground.

Like Drathaar said, you might want to spend a few days in Oregon, or Washington if you're going I-90, to get used to your new baby before you start long-hauling.

We were anxious, too, when we first got our AS but quickly became much more confident. You will, too. Take it easy at first and have a great trip!
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Old 07-03-2015, 12:12 AM   #9
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phoenix , Arizona
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I bought mine from Airstream Adventures in Portland and drove back to AZ then on to TX with my fiancé (now husband who is a fireman and used to towing/driving huge vehicles. That way I could get a break every few hours and he could talk me through my first few hundred miles. Mine is 30 ft and I tow with a Ram 2500 6.7 cummins turbo diesel...a huge rig all together! I've now successfully towed it back and forth between San Antonio and Phoenix without my husband and feel pretty comfortable with the idea of towing -though gas stations still stress me out a bit.

(I work in TX and he is a Captain in Phoenix so moving isn't an option for him, my work is allowing me to work from home more and more with the intention of being fully remote within the next year.)

I could only go 27mph for the first few miles because I was scared to death so I completely agree with everyone else, take your time!!! Everyone else will find a way around you also, read a lot...I've learned so much between the forums and there was a great article in Airstream Life last month about length of your brake cable, highly recommend learning everything you can about staying safe. Use checklists, when arriving and leaving a park. Airstream Adventures gave me a book about airstreaming that included checklists and tips and I read it like my life depended on it (because it does) and also watched the rv safety video which was pretty lame but important stuff to know.

Wish you the best and safe travels! Congrats!!!
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Old 07-03-2015, 08:37 AM   #10
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New owner requirement.

Hi, I forgot to mention that it is a requirement for all new Airstreamers to watch two movies first; "The Long Long Trailer" with Lucy and Desi, and "RV" with Robin Williams. Then you will be ready for anything.
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Old 07-03-2015, 09:04 AM   #11
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Lol yep required watching. I watched them both, just be sure not to use The Long Long Trailer as a how to
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