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Old 05-18-2008, 10:57 PM   #15
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1986 25' Sovereign
Southern Middle , Tennessee
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While I'm partial to my rear corner bed/side bath '86 Sovereign, take a look at the Safari 23' and 25' front bedroom models. They have a pretty nice layout in my opinion.


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Old 05-18-2008, 11:16 PM   #16
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2005 25' Safari
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Originally Posted by gc24
New to this forum. Can someone tell me why the Airstream would be a better choice than the Casita or Oliver?
Hi, gc24. I've seen Casitas before, but never heard of an Oliver, till now. So I just went onto the Oliver site; Looks pretty impressive if that is what you like. I like Aluminum. I was unable to find out how much an Oliver costs to make some sort of comparison. I noticed three things on the Oliver forum: (1.) You also asked for prices and just got a name and phone number. (2.) You mentioned that you were familiar with Casitas, but not Olivers. (3.) You didn't ask them about Airstreams. It's personal preferrence; I'm a Ford person, so you couldn't convince me to buy a Chevrolet, Dodge, or Etc. Same goes for my Airstream, It's in my blood now, I'm infected with Aluminitus and there is no known cure. Please be happy and enjoy whatever you buy and come back here with pictures and stories.


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Old 05-19-2008, 06:13 AM   #17
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1993 21' Sovereign
Colfax , North Carolina
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I just took a quick look at the Oliver site, and they look suspiciously like Casita trailers. Since they look so similar, I'm going to go out on a limb, and assume they feature similar construction for purposes of comparison.
The Casita trailers are basically two piece molded construction, and have fewer places to leak (fewer seams). They are also lightweight and low profile, which means you can tow a brand-new Casita with a smaller, less-powerful vehicle than would be required to tow a similar sized Airstream. They are smaller, and you get a more "tight" feeling inside than with an Airstream, the Airstream has more headroom, and more interior options. The larger Casita, while being only inches larger in every dimension, feels much larger than the smaller unit. Something I have seen on older Casita trailers that I don't like, is the plywood floor seems to be sandwiched between fiberglass, which would make repair from the effects of the inevitable leaks a lot more difficult. I also seem to remember the older Casitas had little or no holding tank capacity, which would present a problem in some instances.
While I haven't owned a Casita, I have had to do some work on them, and I know the systems are a little "quirky".
I do know if I were in the market for a trailer the size of a Casita, and found one, and a similar-sized Airstream, I know which one I'd buy.
Meddle not in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy, and taste good with ketchup.
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Old 05-19-2008, 06:29 AM   #18
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2004 22' Interstate
Tipton , Iowa
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Wow, that's quite a question. Having had both a number of Airstreams and fiberglass trailers over the past twenty years or so, I can give some direct comparisons.

Your question has been asked before and is always a good one. I answered it about a year ago here on, another forum dedicated to fiberglass trailers. My perspective is a little different than what you might expect. You might find that entire thread interesting.

There was a similar thread here at about the same time: If Not Airstream then what?

There is a lot of cross-over from fiberglass trailers to Airstreams and back among owners of each. What works for you today, may not be the ideal trailer tomorrow, and each has both their strong and weak points.

Good luck finding what you're after!

AIR 2053 Current: 2004 Airstream Interstate "B-Van" & 2006 Born Free 32 RQ Kodiak Chassis
Former Airstreams: 1953 Flying Cloud, 1957 Overlander, 1961 Bambi, 1970 Safari Special, 1978 Argosy Minuet, 1985 325 Moho, 1994 Limited 34' Two-door, 1994 B190 "B-Van"
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Old 05-19-2008, 06:37 AM   #19
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1989 25' Excella
By The Bay , Rhode Island
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I had never heard of Oliver b4 either, for those who would like to check them out; Oliver Travel Trailers .

Nice little unit, looks like it is better engineered than most SOB's and very similiar to Casita (?). They are both small, single axle...I guess depends on what you are looking for.

AS will have much nicer appoinmtents/comfort. But the others would certainly give you a place to lie your head at night.

Of course, this is a heavily biased audience, and there is no doubt about the longevity and integrity of AS. You will pretty much be limited to 23' and smaller AS with that 1/2 ton truck...

Good luck-keep us posted,

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Old 05-19-2008, 06:47 AM   #20
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2004 25' Safari
. , Illinois
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I love questions like these. It's like being on Ford forum asking the Ford faithful why Ford.

In reality, Airstream is a good trailer. The best? Perhaps,perhaps not, but I like it. The floorplan, the cult like following, the look and the feel compared to most other brands I've been in.

It is however like the Ferrari of the RV industry. Only a few places will touch it to service it and of those few places, only some are really any good at it.

Though Airstreams don't require much maint than any other brand, at times you have to be careful what you do with the exterior skins (newer Airstreams) and of course, newer Airstreams have tended to get what some call fill form corrosion where you get white lines:

Would I ever buy another new one again, knowing what I know now? Not a chance! I'd still buy an Airstream, but a pre-owned one for three reasons:

First, new Airstreams are simply way over priced. They were when I got my last one new, in 2004, but it was, IMHO, still within reason. Here we are 5 years later and the same unit, as configured, is now roughly $9k more. This is painful as you watch it depreciate, which it will like a rock, which brings me to #2.

Second, some dealers will tell you that buying an Airstream is like and investment. Totally wrong. It is a depreciating purchase that continues to cost significant $$$ to maintain and use (though the upkeep is true of just about any RV). It is true that in 10 years, if maintained, your Airstream could still be in great shape and on the road, and that it will still be worth more than most other similarly aged brands 10 years from now, however, you paid roughly 3 to 4x more than you would have for another brand in most cases, so the comments where Airstreams hold their value can be somewhat misleading.

Third, for the price paid for Airstreams, the quality is not up to snuff, plain and simple. It is better than it was early on this decade, but for the prices paid, if you look at the overall QC threads, there is still very much to be desired in the realm of overall initial quality of the build and quality control. You can read some of what I am talking about here:
Computers manufactured by companies such as IBM, Compaq and millions of others are by far the most popular with about 70 million machines in use worldwide. Macintosh fans note that cockroaches are far more numerous than humans and that numbers alone do not denote a higher life form. -NY Times 11/91
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Old 05-19-2008, 07:14 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by gc24
Great answers from all of you. I really appreciate the input. I like the floorplan to have a nice size bed in it. Nice sure which model to choose. The newer models seem very expensive, but I guess you get what you pay for. I see that there is more room inside of the AS for head and width. It looks like if you get an older model AS, there may be some work involved with it. I have seen vintage models on EBay that look tempting. I guess I am undecided on the right model. Leaning towards the Bambi , Safari or Sport. Any opinions on those? I am not a tall person, it's me my G/F and a dog, and I have a Dodge Ram Hemi Quad Cab to pull it. Looking to spend time in it during some of the long winter months in wamer climates.
Since you're saying that you want to spend some extended time in the trailer with two adults and a dog, I would encourage you to take a hard look at the AS 25FB. This model was first made in 2005, and it the only 25' trailer that I know of that has a true separate bedroom set up. It has the feel of a cozy little house. The 25FB has a walk around queen bed (or twins if you prefer). The bedroom is set up for a second television. The shower is separate, so one can shower without tieing up the whole bathroom. It has the two door refer that can actually hold food for more than a weekend.

SuEllyn likes to sleep in, and the FB's separate bedroom makes this possible. I can get up and fix coffee and play on the computer and watch television without disturbing her. As a matter of fact, I am writing this from Lucyi n a campground on the Maine coast, and SuEllyn is still asleep. This would be difficult in most smaller travel trailers. The FB floorplan lets you feel that you can get away from each other for a few moments. We really like this feature.

The 25FB is at the upper end of a half ton pick-up's towing capabilities, but doable if properly set up.

SuEllyn & Brian McCabe
WBCCI #3628 -- AIR #14872 -- TAC #FL-7
2015 FC 25' FB (Lucy) with HAHA
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Old 05-19-2008, 07:20 AM   #22
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1984 31' Excella
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Trailer Choice

Very hard question. The answer will be a personal choice.
We had two travel trailer wheen my children were very young. The first I bought because of the price. The price was low because of water damage. I had to peel the aluminum back from behind the gas bottles to mid way the roof (it was a 19 ft playmore) to get to good lumber (wood frame wood interior paneling) We used it for two years, sold it for three times what we paid for it and bought a bigger one (there were 5 of us).
The teen years hit and camping sort went by the way side and so did the trailer.
After the last wedding (they were all girls) my bride wanted to get back into camping-NO TENTS. So we went looking.
Visited 5 dealerships and two spring camping expos.
At the dealerships I purposly got the older slesmen off the side and asked two questions:
1. What will this trailer look like in five years of 5000 miles a year. The answer was a mess. I all cases the response was that they would be leaking inspite of the 10 year rubber roof, the cabinets would be falling off the walls and it would be ready for the junk yard, being worthless.
2. I want a trailer that I can pass on to my children when I get too old to tow. What am I looking for?
All five said Airstream. Three had airstreams on lakes somewhere.
Side note: the sun rots everything. Years ago Beechcraft built a corporate turboprop called the Starship. It was a beautiful thing. One piece carabon fiber fuselage state of the art everything. The rumor was you were supposed to park it in a hanger when not in use because the sun would attack the finish and structure.
Like I said earlier, the choice is yours.
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Old 05-19-2008, 07:22 AM   #23
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pagosa springs , Colorado
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Thanks for the info, it is great.
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Old 05-19-2008, 08:46 AM   #24
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1963 24' Tradewind
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Well, it's really just a shiney shell, and the interior design, while unique in the RV industry, has standard RV stuff (AC, fridge, heater, etc) in it. It's NOT rocket science to maintain, and the problems out there are really (if you read most of the quality items) not anything different than other RV units.

I do like the Casita's.... if I bough fiberglass, I'd go that way. BUT, again, I too like shiney tubes.
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Old 05-19-2008, 09:08 AM   #25
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By now you have made some decision> We had the same questions. We discovered there are MANY reasons to go for a Vintage Airstream that has been well cared.

Why not check out the Classified in this forum.
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Old 05-19-2008, 09:42 AM   #26
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pagosa springs , Colorado
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Thanks, I will. I was just getting ready to ask the question here about if a Vintage Airstream as in 50-70's would be a good deal or better deal than the new ones as they are really pricey? I have seen some Vintage ones in the RV Trader.
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Old 05-19-2008, 09:47 AM   #27
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2005 28' Safari S/O
Paradise , California
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Vs. Scamp

Since you are comparing Casita and Oliver with Airstream, you may as well compare Scamp too, which is another molded fiberglass unit. Scamp Travel Trailers: Small Lightweight Campers, Easily Towable They actually make a 5th wheel too.

We considered a molded fiberglass unit at one time but decided they were too small for us. I'm not sure what the cost is on the Casita or Oliver, but at about $13,000 for a new, nicely equipped 16' Scamp, I can see that would certainly be an advantage over a similarly equipped new Airstream.
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Old 05-19-2008, 10:00 AM   #28
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1965 17' Caravel
1983 27' Excella
Walnut Grove/Laguna Woods , California
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We were looking for a small, fiberglass trailer to tow behind our 1947 Chevy Street Rod coupe when along came our 1965 17' Caravel. We looked at it, and half an hour later we owned it. That was in 2000. Sure it has had issues. Sure we have had to do some work. Some by necessity, some by choice. We have towed well over 100 thousand miles.

For a smaller trailer, it has lots of room. We have done some updates, microwave, satelite TV, flat screen high definition TV, inverter to run everything when boondocking, street side awning, just to list a few.

Resale? I could sell it for three to four times what we paid in 2000 before dinner tonight.

Quality? Sure, perhaps you can find something a little nicer, like maybe a Country Coach, but you will pay ten times what a nice Airstream will cost. Nice quality is like making a car go faster. The more you want, the more it costs, on a progressive scale.
How many 1965 Casitas do you see running around?

For how we use it, we wouldn't trade our Airstream for anything we have seen out there.

Not that I'm partial or anything like that.........

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