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Old 06-14-2010, 08:38 PM   #1
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Airstream in my future?

Hello Everyone,

I've skimmed through this site off and on the past couple of years, often dreaming about buying an AS, especially after some friends of mine bought a Base Camp last Fall.

I currently own a mid '90's SOB, and after just spending $1,600 on some dry rot repair in the front end, I opened up one of my storage bays on the back to clean it out and found some bad dry rot hiding in both rear corners of the trailer! Needless to say I felt sick after seeing that and realized the trailer is pretty much toast. I confirmed it with the shop and they said bail out of it NOW, as it wasn't worth fixing. So much for that $1,600!

So now I have the dilemma I'm sure many of you were faced with at some point before buying your ASs. Do I buy another SOB or take the plunge and go with AS? Do I buy new or used? Going the new AS route would certainly more than double my budget if I was went with a SOB, but then I'll be back in this same position in another 10 years (or less!) with a rotted out trailer that isn't serviceable.

Ideally I'd like a trailer in the 25' range, and I love the new Airstream 25 FBs, especially after touring the new dealer here in Portland over the weekend. The MSRP is outrageous though, and I just can't justify spending that kind of money or anywhere close to it on a trailer I use only a month or two out of the year. I did find what might be a decent deal at the dealer in Eugene today, but that will be a story for my next post.

Decisions, decisions...
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Old 06-14-2010, 08:47 PM   #2
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Used. Just look around. I bought new because I was lucky and could afford it. Today is another matter.
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Old 06-14-2010, 09:27 PM   #3
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Go For It

Quote:
Originally Posted by OBS F250 View Post
Hello Everyone,

Do I buy another SOB or take the plunge and go with AS? Do I buy new or used?
Take the plunge, of course! This lifetime purchase should last you far longer than a disposable SOB. Besides, if you do not buy what you truly want, then it is not money well spent.

Buy a used FB. The prices aren't so shocking as new. We found ours right here on the classifieds. Watch the classifieds regularly for months if you have to. If you're patient, the right Airstream will eventually be for sale in an area near you.
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Old 06-14-2010, 09:47 PM   #4
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We bought our "new to us" almost 2 years ago. Found it in our backyard (we are in Gresham & the AS was in Portland) on Craigs list. Thankfully for us, we happened to look on the first day it was posted - and then it was ours. Haven't looked back,. Everything worked even though we didn't check out all we should have. We were to much of newbies to really know what to look for, or what to test.
Good Luck in your search, Susan
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Old 06-14-2010, 10:01 PM   #5
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Thanks for the welcome and good advice everyone!

You can click here for a link to my post about the trailer I found in Eugene today.

Since my current trailer is certainly still usable, I'm leaning towards everyone's advice to just wait it out and find that perfect used AS to avoid the high mark-up and depreciation of new unit. I guess I'll just have to be on top of all the usual places selling ASs so I don't miss a good deal!

At least I can look forward to camping in my current unit until I find that perfect AS and not worry about any issues I have; whatever pops up in my current SOB is NOT getting fixed!
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Old 06-14-2010, 11:38 PM   #6
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We purchased a used 2007 Bambi SE 19' for used $25k
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Old 06-18-2010, 02:57 PM   #7
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Narrowed Down the Search...

After spending untold hours of research this week, I think I've narrowed down my search for a replacement trailer to two models; an Airstream 25 FB or a Komfort Resort 240RK.

Both trailers are almost identical in specs (weight, length, width, etc.). Now it's just a matter of deciding whether or not I want the Airstream bad enough to justify spending 1.5 to 2+ times the cost of the Resort, depending on whether or not I can find a used 25 FB.

If I buy the AS, I'm pretty sure I'll be 100% happy with it and likely won't need to replace it for a long time. Buying the Resort will be a much better fit for my budget right now, yet the most I can probably expect to get out of it is ten years, and that's if I'm obsessive about staying on top of all the maintenance and repairs. At least the Resort, for a SOB, has a little more character to it than most SOBs with the brown fiberglass exterior with black accents and interior trim choices.

If money wasn't an issue, there'd be no tough choice; it'd be AS all the way!
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Old 06-18-2010, 04:20 PM   #8
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Just to throw this out there: Airstreams can suffer rotten floors too. Lots of rivet holes = lots of potential leaks. You can rebuild them and fix them and keep them forever, but the idea of a lifetime trailer likely brings with it some major work at some point unless it's stored inside.

There are SOBs out there that are fully composite with nothing that can rot. For example, a Earthbound is a sexy-looking trailer with a nice interior (I've been in one.) They aren't cheap though.

That said, the 25FB is a unique (and very nice) floorplan. Their popularity means you should be able to score a used one with some looking.

Tom
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Old 06-18-2010, 04:34 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by mutcth View Post
Just to throw this out there: Airstreams can suffer rotten floors too. Lots of rivet holes = lots of potential leaks. You can rebuild them and fix them and keep them forever, but the idea of a lifetime trailer likely brings with it some major work at some point unless it's stored inside.
Thanks for the reponse Tom!

I do realize an AS trailer isn't maintenance free (probably far from it!) and I have seen plenty of the posts with people replacing their flooring. I just like the idea that you all you have to do if a leak creates some damage is find and fix it and simply replace the floor if it's damaged. You don't have to worry about opening up the walls, floor, or roof and finding out half the trailer is rotted out from under you and the only thing holding the whole thing together is the outer shell and some glue!

You also bring up a good point about keeping any trailer out of the elements. I'm currently installing an RV pad on the side of my house that will allow for an eventual awning to be built over the pad relatively easily, and is something I'll likely install in the next year or two. Until then, whatever trailer I get, I plan to keep covered during the winter months with a good quality trailer cover.
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Old 06-18-2010, 05:26 PM   #10
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Josh, One thing to consider when buying new is the warranty. We found a year old new model and they came down almost 20 grand off the list. Keep looking, you'll find one...took us 18 months and we found ours at an RV show!
Andi
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Old 06-18-2010, 06:34 PM   #11
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Msrp

M = maybe
S = suckers
R = really
P = pay

There is no way you pay MSRP. Offer 20% off MSRP. Have financing arranged and a check ready. You might not get the full 20% but you can get close.

BTW having a great dealer with a highly competent service dept... you might want to press just a little less for the best price.


Of course gently used is great too. I'm scoping out a slightly dinged 27 FB Classic at the moment. BIG savings! Still like the International better.

BTW, IF I do get yet another A/S, the next one will have twins. Easier to make beds, easier to access storage, easier to use 2nd twin for alternate purposes. (I sew, and could modify the 2nd bed for a sewing table.)


Paula
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Old 06-18-2010, 09:20 PM   #12
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Resort 240RK Inspection

I stopped by the RV dealer tonight on the way home from work to thoroughly go through a Resort 240RK they have on the lot and was quite impressed!

I told the salesguy that I wanted to just be left alone with the trailer so I could focus on inspecting it, and I checked everything I could think of; all the drawers, cupboards, fridge, stove, doors, bed, couch, dinette, lights, stereo, outdoor shower, awning, slide, bathroom, outdoor storage, undercarriage, and I even was able to climb up the ladder and inspect the roof! Everything seemed very well put together and sealed up perfectly. All the plumbing, even the stuff hidden in the cabinets looked well organized and properly sealed.

I tried to think of anything that might annoy me once I actually used the trailer, so I sat on the furniture, laid on the bed, and even sat on the toilet and stood in the shower! The bed and furniture were quite comfortable and there was even plenty of room to sit on the toilet without your knees banging against the door and plenty of room to fully stand up in the shower. The only complaint I have is that it is a little tight to get past the couch and into the hallway with the slide all the way retracted, however it was still plenty manageable.

Needless to say, I was really impressed with the build quality, and I'd be quite happy with this trailer if this is the route I decide to go. The funny thing is that the particular unit I inspected JUST came off the assembly line this week and had just arrived on their lot, so I was probably one of the first few to walk through it! Tomorrow it's off to the Airstream dealer to do the same inspection on the 25 FB. I wonder what they'll think when they see me playing with all the gadgets and inspecting every sqaure inch of their trailers.

I'll probably make a final decision by the end of this weekend and I'll be sure to let you all know!

Thanks again for all the input!
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Old 06-19-2010, 06:05 AM   #13
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Josh,
How strong was the formaldehyde smell in the Resort? That was our #1 reason for buying AS. My husband is very allergic to this. It takes a long time to off gas.
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Old 06-19-2010, 07:55 AM   #14
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Josh,
How strong was the formaldehyde smell in the Resort? That was our #1 reason for buying AS. My husband is very allergic to this. It takes a long time to off gas.
I didn't notice any formaldehyde smell, but I also was looking for it. In fact, I haven't really noticed any bad smells from any of the new units I've looked at. I don't know if that's because it's always been cool outside when I've toured the new trailers or if the smell just doesn't bother me.

Maybe it takes awhile for the smell to show up? Or maybe the dealer uses some odor neutralizer to mask it while it's on display?
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