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Old 01-25-2009, 10:10 AM   #15
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Decision's,Decision's


WELCOME ABOARD!!!

Another vote for the 25'. We sold our "63" Safari in 2003 and got the Classic. No regrets on the functionality at all, (QC ..not so much).

We do a lot of camp'n in State and DEC parks and the 25' is the perfect size for us. Have spent 10 days boon-dock'n with four adults and two dogs, it was doable & FUN.
As others have said you may be surprised at how soon you covet something larger. (27' FB in our case)

Feel lucky you have two dealer choices, we have NONE in NYS.

Good luck in your search and keep us posted. We love photo's.
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Old 01-25-2009, 05:39 PM   #16
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OK! Here's another two cents. There are Chevy and Ford dealers in just about every small town across the US and Canada. If you get the Bimmer or any other vehicle like it you might have trouble getting it worked on in the middle of nowhere while just down the street are both FD and GM just waiting to help you! Good luck in your choice.
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Old 01-25-2009, 07:14 PM   #17
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I don't know about the 4Runner for towing anything heavier than a Bambi. Check the payload of the 4Runner. A lot of vehicles can tow a lot of weight, but have insufficient payload. This is something a lot of people ignore. Check the endless threads on tow vehicles and weight and hitches. You'll be confused at first, but keep reading and eventually you'll be an opinionated as the rest of us.

I hear you when you say upgrading from a tent to an Airstream is a big, big change, but in a few years, the 19 or 20 may seem small. Then you'll have too small a tow vehicle of you buy the 4Runner and too small a trailer. Check the Tacoma double cab—it's a pretty big truck nowadays and may be a better tow vehicle for the smaller trailers. We used to tent camp too, but choose a 25'. The Tundra fits well with the 25' FB, although if you really want an SUV, there's the Sequoia or Land Cruiser—both a lot of money.

As for dealers, there are some good ones and some bad ones. I don't know anything about your area, but a problem for a lot of us is distance to a good dealer. Personally, we are going to get some things done at the factory after our experience with closer dealers. Maybe some Forum members can PM Slipiotro info about dealers around his part of the world.

Welcome to the Forums. There's a lot to learn, prices are low now, and there's plenty more winter. Take you time and make the right decision for you. Aluminitis hits hard and it difficult to hold back, I know. Stay strong and learn as much as you can.

Gene
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Old 01-25-2009, 07:49 PM   #18
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Welcome to the forums, and congrats on your research mode before buying. Smart. I'm not going to vote for what size you should get. That's really a personal thing and it depends a lot on how you plan to use your AS how you do in small spaces and whether you are large or small people (something some folks tend to overlook).

We opted for a 19' Safari SE LS and love it. It is small ... and we know that ... but we also do well in small spaces, we are not large people (but do travel with 2 cockers), and we can go anywhere we want without issues of length. We do lots of short trips ... long weekends, 1 or 2 weeks and eventually we'll do longer trips. So far so good. We would not be afraid of making a month-long (or longer) trip with the 19'...and we know those who go for much longer trips with them.

We also wanted to not have a huge truck, as it's also our everyday vehicle. We tow with a 2007 Tacoma Doublecab 2WD TRD with a factory tow package rated for #6500 and fine it totally adequate for this AS. Anything larger than 20 and we'd probably be looking for a new truck.

IF
and when we go to a larger unit we will look at the new 23' front bed floorplan, which has a lot of appeal...especially the walk-around bed. Many with smaller Airstreams complain about the corner bed and the small bath, but that's part of having a small trailer! I personally think the use of space is terrific.

Look at them all, consider the pros and cons, see them in person and make your decision on what fit your needs and means.

And we hope to see you in our beautiful state soon!
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Old 01-27-2009, 09:11 PM   #19
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Thumbs up follow up, life is strange

Wanted to continue with the update. We had firmly decided on the Toyota 4-runner, plenty of tow and capacity (actually almost identical to the Diesel Mercedes) and about 400 a month less. Called the Mercedes dealer to tell them (I had a little c-220 for the last 12 years and they have been good to me). The salesman tells me they got in a new incentive package, I can lease the car for less than a hundred more than the Toyota. I will pick it up tomorrow and then drive down to Jim May in Ohio and Thomas in Mo. to look at a 20 ft. and 23 ft. used unit. If I can get a decent price, we are really leaning towards a 23 ft. front bedroom, but they are hard to find discounted. Anyway, your comments are very helpful. The new car eliminates the worry of finding dealers/repair, because they have the service system like chev. on-star. We found that by building a graft of the pluses and minuses and costs and expenses, we were able to see the tow vehicle choice pretty clearly. Hopefully after this weekend, we will know on the Air Stream also. Will keep you informed, and thanks again for all your help and advice.
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Old 01-28-2009, 06:46 AM   #20
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Slpiotro,
Well it looks like you are getting really close to sealing the deal. Good for you. Not to muddy the waters any, but have you looked at Airstream of Arkansas? They frequent the forums and they advertise "Nationwide Delivery". I know service is a big concern. Our two nearest Airstream service centers (DJ RV Center in Dannville, PA and Colonial in New Jersey) are a bit of a drive. But for PA state safety inspection and common RV service I take ours to a local RV dealer that does not deal in Airstreams. So far I have been very pleased. Everything else, I do myself. It helps to be handy.

Good luck and be sure to post pictures of the coach and the TV.
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Old 02-02-2009, 10:16 PM   #21
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Smile we are now proud owners

of a 23 ft. Air Stream, Safari SE with the lounge front floor plan. We visited six different dealers, and finally closed the deal near home. It was worth the travel and time spent, each trip made the options and the pluses and minuses much clearer. The trailer is gently used, and with the tow capacity of the MB diesel, we should be ok. I hope so. Thanks to everyone who gave us feedback, it helped us know what questions to ask and to ask ourselves what we were looking for. I look forward to meeting many new and interesting people on the road. Now I just need to figure out the ins and outs of the Air Stream culture, and we will be on our way.
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Old 02-03-2009, 12:14 AM   #22
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Congratulations on your new baby! A 23 is a good choice.

One note of caution on your tow vehicle. You mentioned in an earlier post that you were considering leasing your Mercedes. Read any lease agreement very carefully. Some leases do not allow any towing, and others limit the weight that you can tow.

Brian
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Old 02-03-2009, 05:50 AM   #23
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Slpiotro,
Congratulations on your new Airstream. Now you have to change your information from "Currently Looking..." to "23' Safari SE"

Get out there and have fun.
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