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Old 07-28-2017, 11:35 PM   #1
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Bunks vs no bunks...

Hi,
I have been dreaming of owning an AS for years and visited the local lot many times over the last 4 years to prepare for a huge purchase.
We finally completed our family. We have 3 kids-8, 4 and 18 months and a Golden Retriever Puppy.

We are hoping to buy our first AS spring 2018. We have originally eyeballed the International Signature 25 FB but then rented one and realized that we want larger.

Now we are looking at the Flying Cloud 30 Bunk vs the 30 without the bunks (and in that case the question flying cloud vs International Signature is on the table again)

We are sort of torn between the two floor plans.
We love that the kids would have their own bedrooms and we wouldn't have to convert any seats into beds every day etc. We also like the full bath better than separate shower.

But then again without the bunks the 30 has so much more storage and feels more airy/ open. We also wonder about re-sell value with the bunk version. In case we would ever have to sell it-would the Bunk model be as desirable to buyers with maybe less kids etc.

We plan to use the AS for many quick, long weekend mini vacations. We are also hoping to winterize it and possibly camp in colder climate and bring snow shoes, skis etc. We love hiking and biking and dog adventures so we will have some gear.
We might bring along friends/ family once a year but they can also bring a tent 😜

We like to have some
Comfort (AC, fridge, comfortable beds) but we are not "5th wheeler-huge-pullouts-Class-A-motorhome-type people"

What would you all do?
-Bunk or no bunks?
-Is the 30 length at all an issue (do you all find camp sites to fit it? Maneuvering at gas stations came up as an issue here before...)
-is the international Serious just a design question or are there other better features?
-what advise do you have for first-time AS buyers?

So many questions,
Thanks in advance!
Diana
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Old 07-28-2017, 11:50 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by dianagillmd View Post
But then again without the bunks the 30 has so much more storage and feels more airy/ open. We also wonder about re-sell value with the bunk version. In case we would ever have to sell it-would the Bunk model be as desirable to buyers with maybe less kids etc.
Welcome to the AirForums!

In case you decide you love it so much you never sell it, just remember that bunks can be enclosed by walls and doors and turned into huge storage areas once the kids are gone. Or enclosed by wire mesh and turned into kennels for dogs. Or anything else an imaginative Airstreamer could devise.

I think most Airstreams are customized by their owners in big or small ways. Buyers of used Airstreams aren't really looking for 100% factory original interior furnishings and fittings, unless it's a vintage model— or soon-to-be-vintage— that is being specifically restored rather than remodeled.

My advice, for what it's worth, is to not worry what other people would like in the resale market, and go with what you like right now. I have never seen a used Airstream of any model or floor plan in usable condition that couldn't be sold to another aspiring Airstreamer when the time comes.
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Old 07-29-2017, 12:03 AM   #3
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If I were you I would go the bunks and the largest AS possible. I would not worry about resale. Buy what works for you. I would not want to have to set up or break down a bed every day.
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Old 07-29-2017, 07:54 AM   #4
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Thank you! That's what my brain says, too.
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Old 07-29-2017, 09:21 AM   #5
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Bunk make Sense

We have a 30 Bunk. My wife and I travel the most. Each son uses the trailer with their families. Bunk is not the best option if just two people. Sure is great with kids.
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Old 07-29-2017, 03:26 PM   #6
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Yeah. It sounds like the bunks would work the best for the next 10-15 years then.
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Old 07-29-2017, 03:28 PM   #7
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Cold weather camping with any airstream is tough. They just aren't insulated all that well. But the bunk models are pretty good because they don't have a lot of windows in the back bed area.

If go for the bunk with 3 kids. We love ours.
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Old 07-30-2017, 11:39 AM   #8
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Thank you! That does help.
We actually mentioned to the dealer that maybe a way to go about this later is to remove the bottom bunk and make the area office space vs removing the bunk and adding cabinettes. But she made it sound like that would be a major renovation and would require to "replace panels" etc. So to us "not much free time and not too handy"
People it didn't sound appealing LOL
We might end up the only airstream that's NOT altered in any way����
We are thinking Bunks now and trade in for a Smaller Model for retirees when the kids are done with us...
Hopefully not for a long time!
Thank you!
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Old 07-30-2017, 11:41 AM   #9
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Yeah, I heard that. We would have subzero sleeping bags, de-humidifier etc. but the holding talks and pipes are a concern. Something to learn more about before trying it...

How many do you sleep in yours? How many kids/adults? Any issues with storage?
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Old 07-30-2017, 11:51 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by dianagillmd View Post
Yeah, I heard that. We would have subzero sleeping bags, de-humidifier etc. but the holding talks and pipes are a concern. Something to learn more about before trying it...

How many do you sleep in yours? How many kids/adults? Any issues with storage?
Me?

We did a lot of mods to make it ours actually. Extended the kitchen counter and pulled the queen from the front. We replaced the queen with a full going across. I need to post pics of that on my Instagram but other mods are there.

As for pulling out the full in back, you can but will have to account for the two rear hatches. We thought about it but didnt.

May do that when our daughter gets older. Make it a desk. More likely she will want to sleep down there. Unlike most kids she isn't super fond of the bunk.
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Old 07-30-2017, 01:00 PM   #11
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I vote no bunks due to the fact you are not full timing in this and you will appreciate the more open feel. If you were full or even part-timing I would vote bunks.

Once you've arrived at your destination, unless you just want to redo the bed everyday, you really don't have to. Many times we make the couch bed and leave it as the bed especially if we know the weather will be where we want to remain outside mostly. We leave it as a bed for almost the entire time. Takes five minutes.
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Old 07-30-2017, 01:26 PM   #12
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Hi

Ok, so right now you have three kids plus one "kid equivalent" dog. Two adults brings the total up to six. The dog will get bigger. The kids will get bigger. There *might* even be another dog (or two ....). I agree that the 25 would be a bit tight.

The 30' bunk version gives the kids some area to sleep *and* some area to retreat to. I would suggest both features are useful. At some point two kids in the lower bunk will become a bit much. At that point there are still other places to sleep in the 30'. A "bunkhouse" tent may be an option. A cap on the TV could also come into the mix.

I've spent a good deal of time in tents in the snow. It's fun and it can be done. Based on doing that, I would not go for an AS in sub freezing weather. There are way to many sub-systems that are going to have trouble under those conditions. The biggie is no water for anything.

Resale is a weird thing. If they stop making the bunk and it becomes *RARE*, resale will be very good. Working out the value in 20 or 30 years is voodoo anyway. Resale / trade in a year or two out will be similar on either version.

Get what makes sense for the group and use it !! If in 15 years, you've had it out a couple hundred times, that's worth something !!

Bob
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Old 07-30-2017, 09:28 PM   #13
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I see your point. It was exactly what makes us even consider the non-bunk 30. The only issue is that I don't think the couch really will sleep the three kids. And then we will have to convert the diner every night/ morning-or else the "nice open view" becomes all Cluttered with sleeping bags etc.
So much to think about...
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Old 07-30-2017, 09:31 PM   #14
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Thank you for your insight. Me-I am thinking the same-there might be another dog. (My husband on the other hand said "no more new life added to this family until 2025" so maybe not. LOL.)

We have done the "RV and tent" combination before but then ran into several camp sites that didn't allow tents at all or not on the same spot. That made us lean towards an option where every family member would have a spot inside the camper if needed.
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