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Old 08-01-2011, 05:37 AM   #15

2003 25' Classic
Zanadude Nebula , WNY
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Originally Posted by sandlapper View Post
Can't add much to this discussion, except to vote YES to the alumiliner. We sure do love ours, and the positives far out weight any negatives. Go for it. John
WE TOO...our biggest concern was where we camp, almost exclusively 'dock'n.

Just do it....

Wow JJW...."Driftn' Way of Life"

AF #1

"Sticks & stones can break your bones...and hail will dent your Airstream"

So when is this..."old enough to know better" supposed to kick in?
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Old 08-01-2011, 05:44 AM   #16
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1995 30' Excella
Bowie , Maryland
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We wanted a dinette and a queen bed in the rear, which limited us to the 34', the 30' made starting in the 90s, and the 25' made starting in the late 90s/early 2000s. The latter group were too expensive for us. I was hoping for a mid-90s 30', but we would've taken a 34' had the right one come along. Fortunately, the 30' came along and was exactly what we wanted, and we're happy with the smaller camper, but the extra storage in the 34' is like..."hmmm...that'd be nice!" (However, I'm not sure how parking it at our house would work...we have enough trouble with the 30'.)

My parents have a 34' and love it. It's a really nice camper, and they've done some full-timing in it (not the original purpose when they bought it, but it was nice to have that option when circumstances required it).

1995 Airstream Classic 30' Excella 1000
2014 Ram 2500 Crew Cab with Cummins 6.7L Diesel

Sold but not forgotten: 1991 Airstream B190
Sold: 2006 F-250 6.0L Powerstroke Supercab
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Old 08-01-2011, 06:45 AM   #17
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1999 23' Safari
Perrysburg , Ann Arbor
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Posts: 914
Shorter vs. longer rigs: "Horses for courses," you know? When I'm trying to wedge into a small National or State Forest site or get in and BUT: when I have guests over for dinner, a 34'er would be too small. It all depends upon what you're gonna' be doing the most; if you plan to "see the USA" and be on the road a lot of the time, smaller is definitely better. On the other hand, if you see yourself sitting in one place more, larger will give you more room for those "necessary" amenities.

New vs used: once again, tradeoffs. New will still require the same preventive maintenance as used, and with a used rig, the "wear-out" things like appliances, water heater, bearings, will have more age on them. But a few-year-old unit will save you many thousands over new, and IF it's been well cared for, will probably prove to be a bargain. I bought a nice used rig and spent SOME of the savings on a high-powered solar system, upgraded wheels and tires, new Fantastic Vent, bigger battery bank for boondocking, etc. I'm still probably $40k ahead of where I'd be with a spanking new unit, and I'm very happy.

I certainly admire the big, new units going down the road - but I'm glad I don't own them, given the sort of camping that I do. So you gotta' figure out what YOU will do and buy accordingly.
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Old 08-01-2011, 07:38 AM   #18
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2010 30' Classic
Vintage Kin Owner
South of the river , Minnesota
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Originally Posted by TomR View Post
How does the 27'FB compare with your 34' w/o slide...on a day-to-day liviability scale? I wonder how "livable" the "lounge" seating is? Also seems a bit light on storage? Thanks...Tom R
Main thing to think about is how many people you will routinely have inside. The benefit of the 34' is all about extra seating space. In a 30' we can serve food for 7, (four at the dinette and three on the gaucho), or we can have a circle of 6-7 conversing in the lounge if the tables are folded away (four on the gaucho plus folding chairs). It's cozy but it works.

If you're a family of four and rarely entertain then a 27 FB is probably sufficient.

I think storage requirements are overrated for most travel situations. We have plenty of space. It's the full-timers who seem to run out of room, because they're carrying a bunch of stuff around with them that other people don't.
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Old 08-01-2011, 07:56 AM   #19
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Currently Looking...
BEND , Oregon
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WOW! Thank you all!!!! I wonder if they sell Airstreams in Diagon alley (Harry Potter reference). Ok, 3/4 ton dodge diesel I have, its noisy but paid off. 2001 but with new diesel pumps so it will be good for a long time if my wife didn't hate it as it rides like a go kart and sounds like a manufacturing facility. So a new truck and a used AS. What 3/4 or 1 ton rides the best? (hornet's nest, I fear), I'm sort of a Dodge guy cause dad was! Trailer package of course what else? I love you guys/girls, objective advice no quota morality, you're the best. Thanks in advance
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Old 08-01-2011, 08:23 AM   #20
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1973 23' Safari
St. Catharines , South Western Ontario
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The 34's are the coolest looking TT ever made. Bar none. IMHO. Luv to have one!
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Airstreams..... The best towing trailers on the planet!
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Old 08-01-2011, 09:39 AM   #21
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1982 34' Limited
Brunswick , Georgia
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I have an '82 34' limited, tow with a V-10 4x4 excursion. I have been very pleased with my setup. It tows very well. I believe 1982 was the first year for the 34'; I have not experienced any structure issues in my rig that were mentioned in another post. I have had the typical minor repairs, but for the most part, no major issues. I have not found the size to be an issue, this is the smallest AS that I have owned. I was able to get my unit at a very reasonable price with meticulous records and manuals from the PO's.
I have the two gouchos in the front with the twins in the rear. I believe all the 34's have the large wardrobe and dinette.
I vote for the 34'!
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Old 08-01-2011, 09:46 AM   #22
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1991 34' Excella
1963 26' Overlander
Central , Mississippi
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We 'upsized' from a 29' to a 34' and haven't had an issue finding spots to camp. Covering 24 states, the 34' has fit anywhere the 29' would have with one exception...a friends private camp has a 90 degree turn on a single lane levee...I'm pretty sure I could make it but the trees have grown and I would leave marks on the skin.

We love the extra room, the thing tows just as good as the 29' with one extra 2,000 lbs knocked down the MPG by about 1.5.
Hi Ho Silver RV! Vernon, Sarah, Mac the Border Collie -
A honkin' long 34' named AlumaTherapy
and a 26' '63 Overlander, Dolly
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Old 08-01-2011, 09:53 AM   #23
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Northern Illinois , Illinois
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Originally Posted by Jammer View Post
The 34' floorplan doesn't make as efficient use of space due to the bathroom layout and so the net benefit is just a couple more feet in the lounge area, and while that's welcome if you travel with a larger group, I don't think it's necessary.
I don't agree with the above statement. I owned a 2005 Airstream 30 and then moved up to a 2008 Airstream 34. I was amazed at the difference that four feet makes. I wasn't sure if I would like the side bath since I liked the walk through bath in the 30. I found that I do like the side bath because it gives privacy in using the bath room without stopping access to the bedroom. When we use the shower we use the accordian door to give more changing space. Besides a side bath, you get a much larger closet with sliding doors.

The 30 felt like one big room. The 34 feels like two = the front lounge and kitchen and then the rear quarter with bedroom, bath, and changing area. The reason the 30 felt like one big room is that the center walkway goes from the couch in a straight line to the bed. In the 34 there is a jog by the refrigerator. (I'm talking about 34s from 1996 to 2012.)

We are planning on eventually fulltimng or extended timing and believe that the 34 will be much more comfortable. This is just my opinion. However, some people find a 34 too small and need a 40' motorhome. Others prefer a truck camper.

Regarding the choice of truck - I chose a dodge not because I am a dodge fan but because I would have bought whatever truck surrounded the Cummins diesel. The 2004 Cummins engine is much quieter than prior year Cummins. The 2012 Cummins are even quieter that the 2004. The Cummins give off very little diesel fumes which was an issue for my wife. I believe that all the diesels today offered by Dodge, GM, and Ford are good. Just a matter of preference. The best truck out there is the DodChevFord - that is the truck with the Dodge Cummins, the Chevy ride, and the Ford interior. Unfortunately this truck isn't made.

Good luck in whatever you choose.

2008 Classic 34
Dodge Ram 2500 Quad Cab CTD

AIR #7317 WBCCI #1772 TAC-IL 1
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Old 08-01-2011, 10:35 AM   #24
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1982 34' Limited
Brunswick , Georgia
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Here is the brochure from 1982 showing all of the floor plan options including the 34'.
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Old 08-01-2011, 07:11 PM   #25
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Marietta , Georgia
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Originally Posted by TomR View Post
How does the 27'FB compare with your 34' w/o slide...on a day-to-day liviability scale? I wonder how "livable" the "lounge" seating is? Also seems a bit light on storage? Thanks...Tom R
When we unloaded our 34' to trade in, we found we had stuff stored in duplicate, triplicate - and stuff we didn't know we had - or need. We have not missed storage - albeit we do not full-time.

We don't typically spend a lot of time in our trailer, and while pure creature comforts in the 27 vs the 34 might not quite so luxurious, we really love our 27 FB - looking out the panorama windows - it doesn't get much better than that. We don't tend to entertain in our trailer (regardless of size) - I tell people who ask that our trailer sleeps (and seats) 2! At this point, our kids would rather stick pins in their eyes than travel with us so everything we do is simple and geared for two.
The Slowsky's
2008 Airstream 27FB International Ocean Breeze
2014 Ford F250 King Ranch 4X4 w/6.7L Diesel, Hensley Hitch
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Old 08-02-2011, 05:25 AM   #26
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1993 34' Excella
York , South Carolina
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We all carry more than we need. I try to go through ours regularly and take out those things that accumulate. Ours seats 6, feeds 4, sleeps only 2. Brad, ready to play Wipeout for us? John
WBCCI #3892
Region 3 , 1st VP

Go often to the house of a friend, for weeds choke the unused path........Emerson

Never pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight he will just kill you........a wise old man.
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Old 08-02-2011, 02:55 PM   #27
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Corpus Christi , Texas
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I like the 34' size, no matter the make. It is the longest one can go and still meet the 65' rig length present in most states. Rear bedroom and front lounge make two living areas for a lot of people. (Storage will depend on even more factors).

As to the "cost" of the third axle (six tires/wheels) don't forget that the load (weight) on each is lower than with a 31' (potentially fewer tire problems), and that they provide more rubber with more brake surface area to bring down the speed in a hurry. While the third axle tends to "unload" during heavy braking, the best hitch rigging -- as with any trailer -- helps to alleviate this tendency. A 34' with discs will definitely stop the rig faster than the truck solo.

A manual transmission turbodiesel truck with 8' bed hitched with a Pro Pride to a 34' equipped with disc brakes and top brake controller . . it doesn't get much better than that to run the roads (OK, it doesn't).

1990 35' Silver Streak Sterling; 9k GVWR.
2004 DODGE Cummins 305/555; 6-manual; 9k GVWR.
Hensley Arrow. 10-cpm solo, 18-cpm towing
Sold: Silver Streak Model 3411
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Old 08-02-2011, 04:56 PM   #28
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1990 34' Excella
Waterloo , Ontario
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 25
We purchased our 1990 34' Excella last spring, and have been touring with it for 1 1/2 seasons. We have pulled from Ontario throughout Michigan; around Ontario; from Ontario to New Jersey; and from Ontario to Florida. My wife and I love the room it provides, and we will be taking it to Florida to spend a few months this winter.

Now, as for towing; I pull our 34 with a 1/2 ton Dodge Dakota with 4.7l V8. I went to CanAm in London Ontario and had Andy beef up the hitch. But we pull pretty good - going uphill slows us down, but pulling on the level is great (1700 RPM in O/D if I want). This beauty tows like a charm, virtually no sway (I have a Reese hitch with equalizer and anti sway).

I don't believe you need a huge truck; but just the right combination. Some smaller trucks actually are better TV's than larger ones. Talk with Andy from CanAm, you will be surprised.

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