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Old 07-18-2010, 02:29 PM   #1
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2007 27' International CCD FB
Manhattan , Kansas
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Comparing a 2007 and 2009 27' International

We are THIS close to purchasing our first Airstream trailer. We've found two almost-identical 27' International with Twins trailers, one a 2007 and the other a 2009. While "newer-is-better" makes sense between THESE two, I'm having a difficult time deciding which to prefer, and what the nominal price difference should be between the two. Please help!

Obviously there's a lot more to valuing a trailer than just the specs, but I can't really comment on quality or usage since we haven't seen either of these trailers in person yet (we hope to sometime next weekend). But here are the differences as far as I can tell:

2009 - Paprika interior - full awning package
2007 - Cilantro interior

The owner of the 2009 is asking $8,000 more than the 2007. The full awning package is a $1600 add-on, so that brings the difference to $6400, or $3200 per year. Is this a reasonable premium? What other things have changed between 2007 and 2009 that might make the newer one more attractive/affordable? Anything?

I know the 2009 is pre-wired for satellite/solar, but was this a standard option in 2007? We're planning on adding solar, so that's a mild benefit for us.

Thanks!! Josh
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Old 07-18-2010, 06:21 PM   #2
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condition is everything...

but the batteries, tires are 2 years older on the 07, so factor that cost in,

since REPLACEMENT will come sooner on the 07...

unless the 09 has 30,000 miles of towing or the batteries have been badly abused.

same applies to hubs, drum brakes and appliances.

does the 09 have ANY factory warranty left ??

even a few months of warranty means SOME protection from surprises.

some of the appliances (fridge? ac? water pump or heater?) came with 3 YEARS of manufacturers warranty, another consideration.

IF you scan the QUALITY threads or model SPECIFIC threads, there will be clues to issues, changes and so on.

the awning package is WORTH IT big time.

i don't think you can BUY the window/street side zipdeez NOW for that price.

HOW MUCH EXPOSURE have the units had?

sun will KILL the skylight covers eventually, another cost item.

ALL of the external sealants need to be REFRESHED occasionally so again depending on SUN this may be an issue.
___________

first hand inspection SHOULD guide the decision process.

leaks, odors, REattached interior bits, WEAR inside/out, LEAKS, water damage, LEAKS and so on...

don't forget leaks.

dogs, dirty feet, smokers, funky food, poo tank, STRANGE stains on the mattresses, and so on....

SMELL (or lack of odor) carries a premium, and we can't scratch and stiff via the monitors here...
_______

typically ALL the units have "pre wiring" for solar going back 6-8 years.

all this really means is that the HOLE CUT in the roof needs to be strategically placed to FISH out the wire.

so if SOLAR is added by anyone but a very experienced streamer shop, it's really better to just use NEW wiring.
_______

basically the differential in MONEY is 200-300 bucks per month.

so try to estimate how much USE each unit has received.

NO USE can be bad because LOTS of oem issue may still exist undiscovered.

HEAVY USE means more wear and tear generally.

LIGHTLY but regularly used and CARED FOR means the previous own MAY have fixed or UNgraded LOTS of oem issues...

the BEST used trailers (for sale) are the ones FIXED/improved and dialed in by a careful owner...
_______

one last "age" issue...

depending on PRODUCTION DATE, there could be 2 years difference in age OR 3 years difference.

and the LONGER u keep either unit the LESS age/purchase price will matter for you OR the next buyer.

cheers
2air'
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Old 07-18-2010, 09:38 PM   #3
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worksology,
I have just one thing to add. Check the model year date on the trailers you are considering. I noticed that there is a guy on this forum that says his trailer is a more recent model year than it really is. Something like that could be a problem, especially if you find out after you buy the unit, thinking you bought a newer model, only to find out, it was all in the sellers mind. I know it sounds kinda wacko, but.......
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Old 07-18-2010, 11:46 PM   #4
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Wow, what an incredibly, incredibly helpful and insightful response, 2air'. You've given me an excellent start to an inspection checklist, and I'll be sure to investigate each point.

Also, interesting about the solar pre-wire. I guess I had just imagined it to be plug&play but hadn't taken the opportunity to research it fully. I had planned on doing it myself, with the help of previous threads on the project, and assumed "prewire" would make the job easier no matter, I think I can handle it either way.

Bluto, that is an astute point. I don't know that I'd trust myself to be able to tell them apart by any particular physical characteristic (model of TV or microwave?), so knowing the true model year will be helpful. And like 2air' mentioned, the trailers' actual production dates could be Late 2007 and Early 2009, or Early 2007 and Late 2009 and that could make a significant difference in use. Which leads me to a question about VINs... does the sequential production number reset to 000000 at the beginning of each model year or is that not a reliable way to determine early/late production within the model year?

Thanks again, tremendously.

Josh
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Old 07-19-2010, 02:12 AM   #5
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the units all have a plate/plaque/decal on the OUTSIDE (streetside)...

with the MONTH/year of production and gvwr, axle rating and a few other specs...

there is also a PAPER version on an inner wall (inside a closet) with this info PLUS the capacity specs.

no need to decode the vin for this.
__________

there are threads here on pre purchase inspections,

but a few important general points...

-OPEN every single hatch/door/access panel and look inside...

for water/dirt/bugs/smells and general signs of exposure/use or care.

-look at ALL the plumbing that can be accessed, turn on ALL the appliances.

-think of this as inspecting a house, not a car.

really careful inspections may make the seller nervous,

but ignore their reaction or just explain how great it looks WHILE u are digging....

or ask "what does this do" as you poke around...

cheers
2air'
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Old 07-19-2010, 05:25 AM   #6
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Model year is like conception and birth, though gestation is not as long as humans or a definite period. My '08 was produced in August, 2007 and we took delivery at the end of October, 2007. Thus, the batteries are almost 3, not 2 The OEM tires (long gone) were even older. I believe Airstream starts producing the next model year in late spring the previous year.

Date code for tires is one of the numbers on the side of the tire and shows week produced and year. Batteries could have been much abused on a dealer lot or by an owners, so '07 model year batteries could be just about shot.

An owner who has made many careful changes may be one who has cared well for the trailer. A trailer with many miles may be better cared for than one with few miles.

Do a search for threads about front end separation, more common on the longer models. Has a trailer had it and has it been fixed? Look for "elephant ears", a term that a search should explain.

We chose to buy a new one hoping it would be trouble free and not wanting to go through the brain damage associated with buying a used car. We learned from experience new ones have a lot of problems, so we were wrong. This type of purchase means you need a lot of knowledge, something that can be partly obtained by reading and reading the Forum. There are Forum members who will do an inspection for you. Look on the right side of Portal page. There's nothing like having a lot of experience owning an Airstream to know what to look for and a good inspector is invaluable.

The appeal of an Airstream (aluminitis) affects the emotions of even the most intelligent and logical person. No one is immune.

Gene
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Old 07-19-2010, 04:50 PM   #7
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I'm pretty confident about doing a thorough inspection myself, so long as I've thought ahead of time about what to look for and I don't get nervous/in a hurry with the seller lurking around or getting annoyed at all my probing. But I understand the gravity ($$) of this purchase, so I'm willing to be uncomfortable just to make sure I don't make a huge mistake.

I know the 07 has new tires, so that may make these units even more similar. I also suspect I'll be replacing the batteries (or adding to them) per our boondocking aspirations, so that's still a worthy consideration, but not critical. I guess the best lesson is what 2air' originally said: "condition is everything".

I suspect I'll be towing back our new home this weekend! Whoa!

--

There is SO much valuable information here on the forums, but I can't help think that it's being contributed in the wrong format. Forums are great for one-off, specific questions, but what's really needed is an AirWiki, where knowledge can be accumulated over time in single, defined locations, not dispersed across years of buried threads. Wouldn't it be nice to point to the definitive "Pre-purchase inspection checklist" page of a wiki instead of rehashing the same conversation over & over? I suspect that is true for much of the conversations on here. Am I volunteering to build it? Maybe.
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Old 07-25-2010, 10:19 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluto View Post
worksology,
I have just one thing to add. Check the model year date on the trailers you are considering. I noticed that there is a guy on this forum that says his trailer is a more recent model year than it really is. Something like that could be a problem, especially if you find out after you buy the unit, thinking you bought a newer model, only to find out, it was all in the sellers mind. I know it sounds kinda wacko, but.......
I think there are a number of these "wackos" within the AS community. I recently looked at a used trailer, which the seller represented in all advertisements and discussions as being two model years newer than it actually was. I only realized the correct model year at the physical inspection. When questioned about it, the seller stated that he purchased the unit off the dealer lot brand new, though it had been sitting on the lot for 2+ years. So, the seller thought it was appropriate to call his trailer the model year of which he actually purchased it, rather than the model year that it actually is. The seller also argued that with Airstreams, model years mean very little when assessing a trailer. He argued that as a buyer, you should primarily consider condition.
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Old 07-25-2010, 12:34 PM   #9
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2 points of clarification...

1. model/production year is not calendar year.

for example 07 production ran from ~may/june 2006 through ~april/may 2007

2. there are often significant changes DURING a model year that differ from PUBLISHED details (which are PREproduction)

for example early 05s came with drum brakes and SHORT segment protectors...

while late 05s came with DISC brakes and TALL segment protectors...

3. DEcontenting may also happen late in a production/model year IF the next years models will not have those bits...

but it's more common for trailers produced near the END of production year to incorporate NEW stuff planned for the next year...

4. MSRP sometimes CHANGES during a model year...

for example late 2005s were 3,000 to 9,000 buckaroos MORE than early 2005 units.

confused?

ok, that's 3 points.

cheers
2air'
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Old 08-08-2010, 07:55 PM   #10
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Help! I am in the process of negotiating 'total loss' value of my beloved 2006 Bambi SE/LE.....appraisers are unable to find 'comps' since there are NO use units we can find for sale. Mine was well-cared for and loved until it fishtailed--maybe result of blown tire--and jack-knifed into my truck--on both sides. Any advice?

M
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