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Old 10-15-2009, 09:41 AM   #21
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Greetings Paula!

I know that you may have reservations about going vintage, but the 1977-1979 Minuet 6.0 Metre is a wonderful weekend get-away maching (IMHO). Most of these coaches are safe from the dreaded floor rot as they have aluminum composite floors (there are a few 6.0 Metres that have wood subfloors so investigation would be wise). At a GVWR of 3,250 pounds, the Minuet 6.0 is easy to tow and set-up. In addition, the interior cabinetry is also vinyl-clad aluminum that cleans up nicely as long as it hasn't had excetpionally rough use at some point in its life.

I purchased my Minuet for the precise reason you are contemplating a second coach; I wanted a smaller coach that would be less cumbersome to tow for weekend expeditions. Over the years since I purchased my Minuet, it has proven its worth for weekends as well as a money-saving alternative to my Overlander for caravans that are touring with few stops being more than overnight -- and for this type of caravan the Minuet allows for more relaxation as its length and reduced width make it an easy tow even on narrow, shoulderless secondary roads.

Good luck with your deliberations!

Kevin
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Old 10-15-2009, 03:53 PM   #22
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TC+AS=Best of both worlds

Foiled, I feel your pain. We picked up a TC 2 years ago to compliment our AS (if you are really lucky you can find a nice aluminum Avion like ticki2 did!). Another advantage of having a proper truck is you can use it for so many toys, Your truck (same as ours) is sufficient to carry a TC up to about 3000#.
This past year we have used the TC just as much as the AS. The TC is great for shorter trips, but we have been out as long as a week. It is also great for when you are on the move and not staying put. We have found it handy just for day trips (beach, kayaking, etc) you always have a bathroom, kitchen, etc right at hand!
We now use the AS for week long stays at the lake, or beach, but find that the TC is much better suited for “rambling around”.
If you want more details, PM me and we can discuss pros/cons of travelling with each.

Bill
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Old 10-15-2009, 04:35 PM   #23
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Have you considered a Road Trek Van Camper? They are really nice, can fully stand up in them and with their recessed floor have a low center of gravity compared to the A/S B-Van . Road Treks are fully self-contained, very nice inside and out. Although the new ones are very expensive, you may be able to find a good used one. I know one full timing couple who tow their 23 foot A/S TT with one. This allows them to leave their A/S in camp and branch off with the Road Trek on an overnight exploration. If you wanted to take an acquaintenance camping with you they could be fully self-contained in the Road Trek while you enjoy some peace and quiet in the A/S. Another 2 cents, Pat
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Old 10-16-2009, 07:32 AM   #24
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Have you considered a Road Trek Van Camper? They are really nice, can fully stand up in them and with their recessed floor have a low center of gravity compared to the A/S B-Van . Road Treks are fully self-contained, very nice inside and out. Although the new ones are very expensive, you may be able to find a good used one. I know one full timing couple who tow their 23 foot A/S TT with one. This allows them to leave their A/S in camp and branch off with the Road Trek on an overnight exploration. If you wanted to take an acquaintenance camping with you they could be fully self-contained in the Road Trek while you enjoy some peace and quiet in the A/S. Another 2 cents, Pat
Downside to this is another vehicle to maintain. They already have a truck...IMO, I would take full advantage of that.

The RoadTreks are nice though...but small inside...

I guess, everything has it's compromises!

It is RV Show time of year...FA;why don't you hit some of the shows this winter and check out all the different options.

Keep us posted!

Bill
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Old 10-16-2009, 08:17 AM   #25
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We have had a Boler for two years and love it! I have just purchased an Airstream and will be fixing it up to use as a semi-permanent cabin.

In the summer we keep our Boler is a car's parking spot at our condo and are ready to go at a moments notice. No trailer brakes and a 70 lb hitch weight makes it very quick to hook up. I literally just get my hitch near it and drag it onto the ball.

This summer I used it for about 30 days. At one point we had three adults and a 60 lb dog in it. It is fantastically comfy for one person! The 14 foot model (Length includes hitch) doesn't have a bathroom, but came with a chemical toilett to minimize trips outside of the trailer in the middle of the night.

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Old 10-16-2009, 08:38 AM   #26
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I think you will find a roadtrek has a very limited tow capacity. Most are maxed out. From my investigations on this, a Sportsmobile custom ordered with either a v10 or Diesel will be needed to make the tow nationwide for our 28. Big bucks for new, and lots of depreciation.

Still, after really looking into the combination, a truck bed works so well for all the stuff needed to live in a Airstream and the Vans have very limited storage for things like Gas cans, b q grills and smelly dirty stuff in general.I am on the road currently. In the locked bed are the above and the dirty power cord, fresh water hose, tools, wheel chocks,patio mats and it is a filthy mess. I can not imagine that going in the back of a van anywhere. It is all a compromise and no rig is perfect. I really do need a vehicle that on a short notice my wife and I can cover 2k miles in a few days and pick up the streamer where we left it. I like compartmentalized vehicles, keeps the rattles and odors down. So, a motorhome is really not going to work with a toad. I do have a concept of the streamer and a toter type design pick- up with a sleeper cab and still a truck bed with cover for all the stuff. I saw one and the guy was a professional trailer delivery business. Hell, maybe i just thought of a part time source of income???
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Old 10-16-2009, 08:54 AM   #27
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Old 10-16-2009, 09:17 AM   #28
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smaller camper

Avion made a pickup camper that went up over the pickup cab roof, it looked like an Avion trailer notched out with a pickup under it. How cool would it be to leave it on your pickup and tow your Airstream with it. Brian
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Old 10-16-2009, 10:22 AM   #29
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I think I'd get a base camp before I would choose an A-Liner. A-liners are a cool pop-up but they are just that. The price of Base Camps are coming way down and they would make a great expedition outpost, I think.

I still want one to make my soup/sandwich wagon, coffee bar/ continental breakfast, cocktail/appetizer rally-on business. Anybody got some capital they want to invest?
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Old 10-16-2009, 05:06 PM   #30
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Hi Paula,

Here is a link to a good Teardrop and Tiny Travel Trailer website. These guys are as passionate about their rigs as much or more as Airstreamers. Check it out.

Teardrops & Tiny Travel Trailers :: Index

Safford RV used to carry the A-Liner brand, but discontinued due to poor quality that they had to stand behind and fix. Chalets are built better and there's a dealer in Chesapeake. A friend of mine has one. It still takes some time to set up camp with it, even though it pops up quickly. They're pretty expensive.

I've also been considering a simple "Bug Out" trailer to supplement my AS and the TD looks like the lightest possibility. Check out this TD made in Roanoke.

Silver Tears Campers

Good luck.

Bob
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Old 10-16-2009, 07:06 PM   #31
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Here's a nicely made, Canadian number that's developing something of a following:

The Escape Trailer
These look like descendants of the old "Trillium" trailers. Originally made from fibreglas septic tanks, IIRC.

There's a couple of the old Trillium ones here in my town, they simply don't rust, or corrode at all.

As for what to do about the second TT, to me at least, it all seems too much trouble to set up and keep and feed a whole other trailer, even if you full-time.

But maybe that's just me...
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Old 10-17-2009, 08:22 AM   #32
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Avion made a pickup camper that went up over the pickup cab roof, it looked like an Avion trailer notched out with a pickup under it. How cool would it be to leave it on your pickup and tow your Airstream with it. Brian
This could be a marketing move for Airstream. With all the pick ups in this country, a camper made like a streamer would sell much better than the base camp.
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Old 10-17-2009, 08:57 AM   #33
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Our solution was to trade the tow vehicle for a class B; (the Chevy-based 19 & 21 ft. Roadtreks tow up to 8100 lbs.). It's great for weekend excursions, including overnighting on the kids' driveways).
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Old 10-17-2009, 08:52 PM   #34
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Our solution was to trade the tow vehicle for a class B; (the Chevy-based 19 & 21 ft. Roadtreks tow up to 8100 lbs.). It's great for weekend excursions, including overnighting on the kids' driveways).
I stand corrected on Roadtreks being maxed out. I discussed this with a local Roadtrek dealer about 2 months ago and his opinion was 3500lbs for a 190.

Regardless please keep us posted on how it handles extensive towing and or extreme applications such as mountain passes etc. This is a very interesting combination and the tow ratings are higher than the 3500 window vans with the 6.0. I see the 190 roadtrek has the highest numbers with the optional 6.0. I wonder if they are using a 4:10 rear end? Thanks for the update
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Old 10-18-2009, 08:04 AM   #35
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The Roadtrek 190 & 210's utilize the Chevy 3500 chassis, 6.0 engine, 4:10 rear end, and "tow-haul" mode. The towing capacity of the 190 is 8100 lbs., and 7500 lbs. for the 210, which we currently operate. The trailer weighs approximately 6000 lbs. It's safe and legal, and we have not had any problems yet with this arrangement (13,000 plus miles), however, compared to the former tow-vehicle (8.0/allison trans.), it is underpowered, and of course, disappointing in mountain passes.
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Old 10-18-2009, 11:27 AM   #36
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Hey Foiled Again, how do you define fulltiming? We 've sold the houses, cars, & most posessions that don't fit in the MH. Loved being able to go anywhere without worrying about anything else. Loved the freedom without strings. We recently picked up a 25' Tradewind to remodel to our liking. Now we need a tow vehicle. Soon we'll need a place to keep them while we travel. Seems like we've taken a step backwards, curses-foiled again!

Ricky
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Old 10-18-2009, 12:20 PM   #37
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ont , Ontario
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This could be a marketing move for Airstream. With all the pick ups in this country, a camper made like a streamer would sell much better than the base camp.
I actually googled truck campers too, because of this thread. I was looking at the Bigfoot campers - thought they might be had on the cheap since it went bankrupt but wow they are $$ (28K for new). Really shocked at how big they look on the inside in the pictures! I went out to my truck and tried really hard to imagine it.
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Old 10-18-2009, 02:00 PM   #38
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I actually googled truck campers too, because of this thread. I was looking at the Bigfoot campers - thought they might be had on the cheap since it went bankrupt but wow they are $$ (28K for new). Really shocked at how big they look on the inside in the pictures! I went out to my truck and tried really hard to imagine it.
True, TC's are every bit as expensive/ft as AirStreams. They are also built very durable to withstand the off-road use many of them see.
They do have every amenity the AS has (actualy, our TC has more amenities than our AS...) some are surprisingly roomy inside (1-2-3 slides) but these will require a dually.
Our hard side (no slides) is plenty comfortable enough for 3+dog. Inside storage is fine. Creative use of racks outside makes for good storage; bikes, skis, kayaks...
Travelling with a TC is very easy (no parking worries, very easy to manuever...) my Wife drives the TC, she will not drive while towing the AS (she can, but doesn't like to) she will take the TC on "Girls Only" trips. Not so with the AS.
We can take the TC tail gating, to the beach, or skiing. It is not likely you would do this with a TT.
We have found the flexibility, manuverability, and convenience of the TC to be a great compliment to the room and luxury of the AS.
An RV for all seasons!

Bill

p.s. The Bigfoots are very nice. And you can still find them around, try CL...
Northernlite is another full fiberglass construction, very similar to BF.

Keep in mind, a lot of the "stuff" you use with the AS will also work with the TC...it's all campin'
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Old 10-18-2009, 05:29 PM   #39
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Hey Foiled Again, how do you define fulltiming? We 've sold the houses, cars, & most posessions that don't fit in the MH. Loved being able to go anywhere without worrying about anything else. Loved the freedom without strings. We recently picked up a 25' Tradewind to remodel to our liking. Now we need a tow vehicle. Soon we'll need a place to keep them while we travel. Seems like we've taken a step backwards, curses-foiled again!

Ricky
How I fulltime. Some folks think I'm not a fulltimer because I'm still working fulltime - I own a timeshare deed at a campground where max out and I stay about 32 weeks per year. If I'm on one of my required weeks away from the main campground, I will either travel or if work demands I move to one of about six other campgrounds in the area and stay there. I will go up to 50 miles away from work and face a long commute just for the joy of staying in a nice place like Chippokes Plantation, or the state park on the eastern shore ($12 for a one way commute though!)

I do try to get away for at least 3-5 days on a long weekend. Since I'm one of the two owners of the business, and I'm one of the two sales people, I actually can sell our company's services while traveling on the road.

So I'm not one of those people who put 25K on their trailers in a year. I am finding out that I can really enjoy exploring Virginia on a very intimate level. It's amazing how little we learn about places and people while whizzing by at 55mph or faster. It's cool to find a little town with a small city park or private RV park where you can settle in for a few days, go to the local shops and diners and chat up the locals. Every single small town has some interesting history or haunted house.

Paula
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Old 10-18-2009, 08:57 PM   #40
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The Roadtrek 190 & 210's utilize the Chevy 3500 chassis, 6.0 engine, 4:10 rear end, and "tow-haul" mode. The towing capacity of the 190 is 8100 lbs., and 7500 lbs. for the 210, which we currently operate. The trailer weighs approximately 6000 lbs. It's safe and legal, and we have not had any problems yet with this arrangement (13,000 plus miles), however, compared to the former tow-vehicle (8.0/allison trans.), it is underpowered, and of course, disappointing in mountain passes.
I am amazed it works that well. Combined weights are well within the needs of a big block gas or Diesel. I am surprised it works that well and a neat combination. Sportsmobile gives the ability to order a v10 or diesel. I really like the style of the Roadtrek however and they have a great reputation. Thanks for the info.
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