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Old 03-08-2010, 08:33 PM   #1
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1999 34' Limited
Darien , Wisconsin
Join Date: Mar 2008
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Wondering what I can sell it for

Have a 1999 34 foot limited rear queen, mint condition, has been babied and been very well taken care of, have all maintenance records. New tires, recently packed wheel bearings. Awnings all the way around in great shape. We're going to go full time soon and the wife says if we full time we need more room, either a motorhome or a big fifth wheeler, Wondering what we can get for our 34'.
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Old 03-09-2010, 07:09 AM   #2
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2007 31' Classic
holland , Pennsylvania
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check it out first,but i dont think a motorhome or fifth wheel is going to give you much more usable space.plus motorhomes from people i talk to at campgrounds are big maintenance headaches.if you will be sitting in one location for extended periods the trailer is the better option imho.
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Old 03-09-2010, 08:20 AM   #3
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1989 34.5' Airstream 345
Cleveland , Tennessee
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xonvldz is right about having less room in a MH. There are more storage area though. We have a 345 & you lose 5' for the driver's area. Maintainance is more than just a TT. For a true comparison you have to add maintaining a TV as well since MH's are "self towing".

I'm not trying to turn you off getting a MH. We fulltime in ours & love it. All you need is a pretty level spot when stopping for the night. No need to set down stabilizers before going to bed. Having a passenger make coffee or lunch while rolling is a huge advantage. Private restrooms are always open too.

Fell free to PM me or post questions here.

Ricky
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Old 03-09-2010, 09:15 AM   #4
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Walkerton , Virginia
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20k

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Old 03-10-2010, 08:39 AM   #5
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Airstream 34' vs 37' 5th Wheel for Fulltiming

We currently own a 1998 34' Airstream FB and used to own a $130K 37' fifth wheel. We full-time in the Airstream and used to full-time in the 37' fifth wheel. I hope my insights might help you.

Fifth Wheel Advantages:
- 400 Sq. Ft.
- Larger Bedroom and Kitchen Area are helpful
- More storage area

Fifth Wheel Disadvantages:
- Usable life expectancy with good care = 10 to 15 years
- Fully depreciated in 10 years
- High cost roof and slide-out seal maintenance as the unit ages
- Must always watch for leaks which will destroy the unit
- Exterior walls can delaminate totally destroying the unit's value
- Our 37' was 18,000 pounds fully loaded and required a Freightliner FL60 as a tow vehicle
- Combined cost of Tow Vehicle and Trailer = $210,000 both rapidly depreciate
- Air ride hitch is recommended

34' Airstream Advantages:
- Airstreams are virtually indestructible with good common sense care
- Can be towed with a 2500 class truck (diesel is best)
- The view from those Airstream windows (what can I say!)
- Airstream is very inexpensive to own and maintain
- Your Airstream is nearly fully depreciated and will continue to serve you or your children for another 50 years with good care

34' Airstream Disadvantages:
- 254 Sq. Ft. Tight, but adequate for two people
- Short on Storage (when we are parked anywhere for a long time, we bring a small storage trailer as a convenience)
- Requires a Hensley Arrow or Pro-Pride Hitch to tow well
- Requires the addition of a rear A/C for comfort in hot climates

Summary:
- We do not regret downsizing from our 37' Fifth Wheel to our 34' Airstream.
- We loved full-timing in the fifth wheel no more or less than in our Airstream.
- We are comforted that as we get older, so will our Airstream also age gracefully and affordably.
- We get a lot of fifth wheel owners who ask about and look longingly at our Airsteam, but we never ever had an Airstream owner look longingly at our fifth wheel!

Price:
- Depending on condition and for this time of year and in this economy, you should be able to get between $19,000 to $22,000 for your Airstream.

If you can't see the bright side of life, polish the dull side.
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Old 03-10-2010, 09:37 AM   #6
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Walkerton , Virginia
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Originally Posted by Secguru View Post
If you can't see the bright side of life, polish the dull side.
Great post and fantastic finish.

Thanks - Pat
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Old 03-10-2010, 10:19 PM   #7
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1999 34' Limited
Darien , Wisconsin
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 116
Quote:
Originally Posted by Secguru View Post
We currently own a 1998 34' Airstream FB and used to own a $130K 37' fifth wheel. We full-time in the Airstream and used to full-time in the 37' fifth wheel. I hope my insights might help you.

Fifth Wheel Advantages:
- 400 Sq. Ft.
- Larger Bedroom and Kitchen Area are helpful
- More storage area

Fifth Wheel Disadvantages:
- Usable life expectancy with good care = 10 to 15 years
- Fully depreciated in 10 years
- High cost roof and slide-out seal maintenance as the unit ages
- Must always watch for leaks which will destroy the unit
- Exterior walls can delaminate totally destroying the unit's value
- Our 37' was 18,000 pounds fully loaded and required a Freightliner FL60 as a tow vehicle
- Combined cost of Tow Vehicle and Trailer = $210,000 both rapidly depreciate
- Air ride hitch is recommended

34' Airstream Advantages:
- Airstreams are virtually indestructible with good common sense care
- Can be towed with a 2500 class truck (diesel is best)
- The view from those Airstream windows (what can I say!)
- Airstream is very inexpensive to own and maintain
- Your Airstream is nearly fully depreciated and will continue to serve you or your children for another 50 years with good care

34' Airstream Disadvantages:
- 254 Sq. Ft. Tight, but adequate for two people
- Short on Storage (when we are parked anywhere for a long time, we bring a small storage trailer as a convenience)
- Requires a Hensley Arrow or Pro-Pride Hitch to tow well
- Requires the addition of a rear A/C for comfort in hot climates

Summary:
- We do not regret downsizing from our 37' Fifth Wheel to our 34' Airstream.
- We loved full-timing in the fifth wheel no more or less than in our Airstream.
- We are comforted that as we get older, so will our Airstream also age gracefully and affordably.
- We get a lot of fifth wheel owners who ask about and look longingly at our Airsteam, but we never ever had an Airstream owner look longingly at our fifth wheel!

Price:
- Depending on condition and for this time of year and in this economy, you should be able to get between $19,000 to $22,000 for your Airstream.

If you can't see the bright side of life, polish the dull side.

Great post! I agree with some of what you say, but also disagree with much of what you say. Our Airstream has been very expensive to own, thousands and thousands of dollars in repairs. I had always heard and believed that Airstreams quality was great, but I've been very unhappy with the quality of this trailer and am definitely looking forward to a new unit.
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Old 03-11-2010, 01:40 AM   #8
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Airstream Maintenance Costs

Dear Wondering:

Over the several years we have owned our 1998 Airstream we have had perhaps $4,000 in repairs. The biggest cost was in taking our unit mostly back to original, adding a second A/C and replacing the original A/C, which gave out after 10 years of use and 6 new tires. This amount is quite reasonable in my mind. Maintenance on any RV will be more than for say, a Condo.

If you think that is high, get ready for the cost of maintaining a motorhome! You can expect several thousand dollars EVERY YEAR. Just the cost of maintaining a diesel engine will run over $1,000 per year. And things just go bad on motorhomes at an alarming rate. My brother has a $500K Country Coach and spends upwards to $3,000 per year in maintenance. This amount is not abnormal at all. These are all highly complex hand crafted vehicles, mass production quality control is mostly a fantasy for motorhomes. They just break a lot.

I would not recommend full-timing in a gas engine motorhome at all.

We went with the Fifth Wheel in order to reduce maintenance costs, but did not save much over my brother's cost. However, we did not have to vacate our home to service the diesel engine, we just drove the Freightliner to the service agency and left it and then slept peacefully in our fifth wheel until it was ready to pick up. Not so motorhomes. You will need a hotel while the motorhome is in service, which sometimes can take weeks.

I can confirm that the Airstream is the least expensive option to maintain based upon personal experience and substantial research (over 200 RV campground interviews over 5 years before buying the Airstream).

I hope you find a solution that works well for your family. Please don't let anything I say discourage you from full-timing. This has been an experience I wouldn't trade for anything. I work as a consultant and take my home/office to every job. No matter what choice you make on a vehicle, you will be happy that you changed your lifestyle. Life is just better in an RV.

Most sincerely,
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:01 AM   #9
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1992 25' Excella
Cortez , Florida
Join Date: Feb 2010
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you should get 28-32 grand for this retail if its as nice as you indicate, original owner a big plus
Where are you located, I'm looking for a 34'
BB
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:37 AM   #10
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I have a 38 ft fifth wheel still for sale 2.5 years after I got a 26ft airstream I can get you pics if interested I paid $49,000 in Late 06 I am asking $14,000 Trailer has only been slept in Approx 20 nights Much smaller Airstream Used over 72 nights per year and more then 60,000 mile per year.
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Old 03-11-2010, 09:14 AM   #11
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Kirkwood , Pennsylvania
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Very good post. I have (2) 30' Airstreams, A 2000 Excella and a 2004 Classic and both are in Mint condition. I had looked into a 5th wheel and also at one time had a Dodge Motorhome left to me. What a headache trying to get the MH running so we finally let it go for nothing just to get it off our property. The cost factor towing a 5th wheel can be quite expensive and those low hanging tree limbs always find them.
My 2000 30' Excella is for sale if someone is interested in Airstreaming in style.
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Old 03-11-2010, 05:56 PM   #12
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1999 34' Limited
Darien , Wisconsin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bruceburkart View Post
you should get 28-32 grand for this retail if its as nice as you indicate, original owner a big plus
Where are you located, I'm looking for a 34'
BB
I'm based in Wisconsin, currently in Arizona, will be back in the midwest, probably not looking to sell until this fall, will be ordering a new truck this summer and a new 5th wheel this autimn
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:00 PM   #13
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1999 34' Limited
Darien , Wisconsin
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 116
Quote:
Originally Posted by Secguru View Post
Dear Wondering:

Over the several years we have owned our 1998 Airstream we have had perhaps $4,000 in repairs. The biggest cost was in taking our unit mostly back to original, adding a second A/C and replacing the original A/C, which gave out after 10 years of use and 6 new tires. This amount is quite reasonable in my mind. Maintenance on any RV will be more than for say, a Condo.

If you think that is high, get ready for the cost of maintaining a motorhome! You can expect several thousand dollars EVERY YEAR. Just the cost of maintaining a diesel engine will run over $1,000 per year. And things just go bad on motorhomes at an alarming rate. My brother has a $500K Country Coach and spends upwards to $3,000 per year in maintenance. This amount is not abnormal at all. These are all highly complex hand crafted vehicles, mass production quality control is mostly a fantasy for motorhomes. They just break a lot.

I would not recommend full-timing in a gas engine motorhome at all.

We went with the Fifth Wheel in order to reduce maintenance costs, but did not save much over my brother's cost. However, we did not have to vacate our home to service the diesel engine, we just drove the Freightliner to the service agency and left it and then slept peacefully in our fifth wheel until it was ready to pick up. Not so motorhomes. You will need a hotel while the motorhome is in service, which sometimes can take weeks.

I can confirm that the Airstream is the least expensive option to maintain based upon personal experience and substantial research (over 200 RV campground interviews over 5 years before buying the Airstream).

I hope you find a solution that works well for your family. Please don't let anything I say discourage you from full-timing. This has been an experience I wouldn't trade for anything. I work as a consultant and take my home/office to every job. No matter what choice you make on a vehicle, you will be happy that you changed your lifestyle. Life is just better in an RV.

Most sincerely,
We're definitely going with a 5th wheeler, because we do not want to vacate our home to have engine maintenance done either.. We're lloking at top end 5th wheelers and will be touring some factories this spring. You;ve been fortunate with your maintenance costs, ours have been several times higher..
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Old 03-11-2010, 10:14 PM   #14
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You;ve been fortunate with your maintenance costs, ours have been several times higher..
I'd appreciate hearing a quick rundown on the expenses you have had...
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