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Old 07-02-2014, 11:44 AM   #15
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This forum never ceases to amaze me. Everything is covered. I was raised to avoid borrowing at any cost. I have stuck to that- mostly. I have borrowed for short periods of time. As for Airstream:

I wanted new and, could have purchased one on time easily. As I shopped two used Airstreams were traded in- an 06' Safari 25 rear twin and an '07 Safari 25 SE front queen. The '06 price was less than half (52% less) of the new 2011 FC 25 rear twin model ($54K negotiated) and the '07 was (32% less) but had a huge dent in the rear corner. There was a $12K difference in the two used trailers- $14K once the panel was replaced. The five-year-old Safari twin trailer was different- vinyl ceiling and covered walls along with no pano windows; but, when I looked at it the important things were there- floor plan, condition, etc. To date, I have added $14K of updates, replacements and upgrades to it but it is top notch stuff. (also includes hitch, gen, etc). I am still way below the new one and I was able to do this with "freed" money. The thing is, I would have wanted to do some of this to a 2011 as well but would have been limited in my discretional funds.

I am somewhat concerned that I may have purchased too soon on my timeline. I am not retired and my time off is greatly limited. I have not camped much at all in it thus, violating Del Gurney's use or see principle. The redeeming factor is that I have free storage in a warehouse since I purchased it- this may soon end but at least the past two years have been inexpensive to say the least and offered a great place to work on it. A renovation would have been overwhelming to me, a new first RV owner and totally unaware of what such an undertaking would cost. So, I bought a newer model.

The use issue is more a concern for a single person as everything is more limited including budget- in most cases. Most often families camp so it is somewhat more justified. People do camp with me but in the end, it is my wallet. Hopefully I will be able to fulfill my goal of summer Airstreaming and working in a few years.
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Old 07-02-2014, 07:30 PM   #16
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While a bank might say I can afford a loan for an $80k airstream, I say I cannot afford a new airstream. I *used* to think I could if I wanted to, but I live more modestly now. Our mortgage (30yr) used to be 50% of our income. Now we make much much less, BUT our mortgage is 20% or less (13 yrs left on a 15 yr mortgage). Our only other debt is one car payment.

Our last trailer , we spent about $13k on and it appraised at more than triple that. Being financially conservative now, I'd rather invest my time rather than cash. Our current reno budget is $10k.

Also, I don't have to take out a loan to finance an initial purchase of a vintage trailer and to invest a few hundred extra every month when i have it.

If work slows down, the project gets paused. You can't pause a loan.

Lastly, not only do I love and prefer vintage (I know not the point), but I think a $15k airstream is much more "affordable" for us than a $50, $80, or $120k airstream is.
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Old 07-02-2014, 07:54 PM   #17
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We love our 06 Bambi! Bought it used over 4 years ago and we could have bought a nice car for the $$ we spent but all of the friends and experiences we have had! Owning an Airstream is one of the best decisions we have ever made! It's a life changer!
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Old 07-02-2014, 08:12 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by rodsterinfl View Post
I am somewhat concerned that I may have purchased too soon on my timeline. I am not retired and my time off is greatly limited. I have not camped much at all in it thus, violating Del Gurney's use or see principle.
What is the use or see principal?

We also do not use the trailer as much as I wish we did, but we have free storage, and it's paid for. Our only ongoing expense is insurance.
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Old 07-03-2014, 09:01 AM   #19
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Think you Cannot Afford a 'New(er)' Airstream?

I believe he said use or see it on a daily basis.

It is a good discussion as others consider these things too. So, some like vintage and are willing to pay as they go. Others buy near used, to save and add options they want. Buyers of new units want the warranty and latest additions. It is a good point to make about the cost factor. There is so much at play, discount off msrp, depreciation, age, condition, warranty- for me, if I would've purchased new my warranty would be expired already with only about a month's worth of camping done.

This is one thing that is special to this brand- a swath of genres to choose from- 40's, 50's, 60's all the way through to new. Not many products offer such an option in the RV world on a larger more affordable scale- almost like a VW bug! Yes, there are the special campers, ten left in the world type thing, but they have to recreate and machine everything as there are no parts and the company long gone- more expensive and those cool old buses but again at a smaller scale.
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Old 10-17-2014, 11:14 AM   #20
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I believe he said use or see it on a daily basis.

It is a good discussion as others consider these things too. So, some like vintage and are willing to pay as they go. Others buy near used, to save and add options they want. Buyers of new units want the warranty and latest additions. It is a good point to make about the cost factor. There is so much at play, discount off msrp, depreciation, age, condition, warranty- for me, if I would've purchased new my warranty would be expired already with only about a month's worth of camping done.

This is one thing that is special to this brand- a swath of genres to choose from- 40's, 50's, 60's all the way through to new. Not many products offer such an option in the RV world on a larger more affordable scale- almost like a VW bug! Yes, there are the special campers, ten left in the world type thing, but they have to recreate and machine everything as there are no parts and the company long gone- more expensive and those cool old buses but again at a smaller scale.
We currently own a 2014 Minnie Winnie travel trailer, I would love to buy an airstream, but the wife doesn't think we can afford it. I really believe they are built to last. I am tire of this fake wood and fiberglass materials, it seem that everything is so cheap. Are you really happy with your airstream?

Thank you,
Kennedy>>
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Old 10-17-2014, 12:00 PM   #21
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I was a trailer traveler anyway, so getting the AS prior to retirement was just a natural progression.
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Old 10-17-2014, 12:29 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Deerhunter1 View Post
We currently own a 2014 Minnie Winnie travel trailer, I would love to buy an airstream, but the wife doesn't think we can afford it. I really believe they are built to last. I am tire of this fake wood and fiberglass materials, it seem that everything is so cheap. Are you really happy with your airstream?

Thank you,
Kennedy>>
Just keep poking around on the forums and you will find a gazillion threads on that topic. With care and proper maintenance they will far outlast most other RVs. Mine is 45 years old, we are usually the oldest trailer in any campground we stop at. Unless we're at an Airstream rally!
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Old 10-17-2014, 01:05 PM   #23
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This is a meaty thread, and good to read about other streamer fiscal rationale.

Time is value. And stuff is overhead. In order to keep that in check, I have to remember to charge myself for time spent working on projects. I kind of run my inventory like a prison warden - one item comes in, one has to leave. If a restored unit sits and I don't drive it, at six months it's decision-time. That part is a mental thing that keeps me from turning into an overhead hoarder.

It took a series of quarterly discussions, and some saving-planning, to save enough to leverage only enough for the coach so that we can use it for "entertainment" now, then a longer-term home for traveling in a half-decade. It'll be paid-off, and, I hope, recurring service and repair maintenance will remain at a manageable threshold. It was a factor to have found a new trailer that was a year old, and offered at a significant discount.

Then we just said "what the heck"....carpe diem.
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Old 10-18-2014, 09:28 AM   #24
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Quote:
We currently own a 2014 Minnie Winnie travel trailer, I would love to buy an airstream, but the wife doesn't think we can afford it. I really believe they are built to last. I am tire of this fake wood and fiberglass materials, it seem that everything is so cheap. Are you really happy with your airstream?

Thank you,
Kennedy>>
Am I really happy with my Airstream? I shopped for a long time with the intent of purchasing a small motorhome. I had rented such campers and liked them. After visiting the Tampa Super RV show a few times I believe I made the right choice for my camping goals. Now, as far as new purchasing and price points, I would have to reset and rethink. If I were spending $100K I would probably consider something else. I like Airstream. It is modern and I agree with the overall concept of less is best and being able to tow easily is important to me. I purchased it for a summer nomad getaway home. There are SOME features of AS that are higher quality and some that are not- the same industry materials. If it were for full timing, I would either want to go bigger or get a class A- at least that is what I believe at this point but note that I speak from limited experience. As far as brand, I believe that Airstream is one of a few quality brands of RVs out there. I believe that you have to still be careful with ANY brand and, every one surely has its issues, some more serious than others. Airstreams have to have rivets checked, edges sealed, etc but supposedly they do last. I hope this is true of the newer ones too. I will say that when I purchased and have upgraded I have done it as a project for life. I am perplexed at the number who buy new every couple years a product that is supposed to last. I guess that is their business, and money though.

Just in the three months since I commented on this thread, I had to move my AS to a different storage facility with a hefty cost for enclosed parking. I am still on a limited camping schedule with my semi-retirement in a year and a half away. I am different than many on this issue as I am a single income family. It is quite an expense to have a camper-in-waiting. I went to a retirement/life planner and got mixed messages so I hit the cruise control button and keep on keepin on! All in all, the answer of happiness depends on use. Are you happy with your Winnie other than build materials? Even in AS the different trim levels offer varying quality. For me, I have upgraded everything that was important to me, in some cases exceeding even new AS - with my 32" SMART LED, Flash Oven, etc. but naturally it is still basically what it started out being. Contentment in a retail product is fleeting. There will always be something missing or a new improved gadget not included on the one we have. I try to weigh what those somethings are and consider if it really matters in what I want to do. I often fail miserably, giving in to the market. Other times I play it smart and realize that it is not really needed. The budget also puts things into perspective! Remember too that minnie winnies new are advertised at $20- $30K (before discount) with slides, etc. What AS could be had for that? The question is, what does the $20-$30K camping budget look like? AS is about twice that new.
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Old 10-20-2014, 12:33 PM   #25
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I think the one thing coming over the hill to "get" Airstream might just be the Oliver. It's a fiberglass egg built like a yacht. Aside from the fact that it's only a 22 footer, it's a four season camper!

Paula
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Old 10-20-2014, 12:39 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deerhunter1 View Post
We currently own a 2014 Minnie Winnie travel trailer, I would love to buy an airstream, but the wife doesn't think we can afford it. I really believe they are built to last. I am tire of this fake wood and fiberglass materials, it seem that everything is so cheap. Are you really happy with your airstream?

Thank you,
Kennedy>>
I have a 2015 Coleman TT 1975 Airstream Sovereign and a 1981 Airstream Excella II. We use the Coleman for camping until I can get done with the AS. We used our 1975 for a couple of years after we bought it, then tore it down for a rehab. Unfortunately work changes as does life and the AS is still torn down, but I am getting closer to being able to free up time to work on it. We looked at getting a gently used AS that was in better shape, but couldn't find anything in the price range of the Coleman. I still love my Airstream and want it back on the road. The 1981 won't go back on the road for a variety of reasons, but will live out it's final years as a guest cottage on our farm.

Aaron
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Old 10-20-2014, 01:09 PM   #27
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I think the one thing coming over the hill to "get" Airstream might just be the Oliver. It's a fiberglass egg built like a yacht. Aside from the fact that it's only a 22 footer, it's a four season camper!



Paula

That thing looks pretty slick. Not real sure about the fiberglass interior though... Wonder if they'd let me test camp one for them.
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Old 10-20-2014, 01:52 PM   #28
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Not to get off topic but I will. I think the Casita 17 is a better trailer for the money. There is an active forum with lots of help and advise. They hold their value too. I started with a Casita before our Airstream. I miss the simplicity of that trailer sometimes compared to my Airstream but I wanted something bigger. The only fiberglass trailer that is Castia-like and larger is the Bigfoot line of trailers but they are far and few between.

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