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Old 09-18-2013, 08:00 PM   #1
2 Rivet Member
1989 25' Excella
Austin , Texas
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 34
Trailer Quality and Value

I am just beginning my quest to become an Airstream owner, and was wanting to know if there were certain years or eras which produced a superior product than others for Airstream?

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Old 09-19-2013, 08:27 AM   #2
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1973 21' Globetrotter
Houston , Texas
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 1,902
Hi, and welcome to the forums!

This is one of those "age old" questions for which there are several discussion threads. Try searching for "broken frame" and "cracked frame" and you can see some of the known frame issues with some trailers built since 2000. Try also searching for "corrosion on new trailers," "Quality and workmanship" and the like to see complaints about relatively recent purchases of newer models.

Trailers built since 1969 are prone to "rear end separation" due to leaks and the shape of the body. All trailers are prone to floor rot due to leaks. At the end of the day, it comes down to the individual trailer--you might find a fairly new trailer that has a completely rotten floor, or a 60's vintage trailer that has spent its life in a garage, and is in relatively good shape. It is very important that you get a good education on how to do a thorough inspection of a trailer before you buy (checklists are available on the forum as well).

Good luck!

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Old 09-23-2013, 09:52 PM   #3
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2003 25' Safari
Las Vegas , Nevada
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 3
Trailer Value and Quality

The question and response are both interesting. As the original owner of a 2003 Safari SS (which I may be offering for sale in the very near future prior to a planned purchase of a new 2014 model), I have noticed a deterioration in the quality over the years, materials on the upholstery, lack of insulation and fabric on the ceiling and walls as well as other obvious features on the earlier models. These changes became more noticeable after 2004 or 2005. As far as durability is concerned and speaking from my own personal experience I have had absolutely no problems with my SS . I've had no problems with the axles, appliances, plumbing, electrical system, leakage from the roof, windows or anywhere else. I did replace the furnace fan last year. However, that was the only repair I've ever made to my Airstream. The interior looks almost (and I mean almost) as new as the day I drove it off the lot. It's been trouble free, care free and an absolute pleasure to own. You might say an Airdream. Despite some minor deterioration in quality, an Airstream purchase whether new or used is the wisest decision you can make if you're planning on buying an rv.
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Old 09-23-2013, 11:19 PM   #4
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2010 27' FB Flying Cloud
Fraser Valley , British Columbia
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 2,604
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I am pretty happy with my 2010 FC; don't know if I'm the exception or the norm for that model year. I did have some initial issues, but they were repaired under warranty.

Just returned from my longest trip; everything worked perfectly. The trailer even outsmarted me on some things. Perhaps ignorance is bliss - I do not monkey around a lot with my trailer - I leave that to the experts. Was exposed to some heavy rain/wind, and did not see any leakage either.
easily distracted by shiny objects
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Old 09-23-2013, 11:42 PM   #5
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2003 25' Safari
Las Vegas , Nevada
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 3
Quality and Value

When you pay a premium for an rv you should, in my opinion, expect and be entitled to trouble free operation. I certainly haven't been disappointed. Just check the vents, air conditioner cover and of course the caulking on your roof (yes you can walk on it) yearly. That should help to maintain a watertight ship.
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