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Old 11-01-2006, 08:44 AM   #1
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Thumbs up New Member-15 year full timing Airstreamer

My wife and I have been living and travelling full time in our 1992 Model 34 Excella. We have had an RV for 41 years, but this is our first Airstream. Our log shows that we have towed our Airstream over 160,000 miles. We've towed it to 49 states (We flew to Alaska), through every Canadian Province, and most of Mexico. We sold our house in 1991, put a few things in storage, and hit the road. Our current tow vehicle is a 2003 Ford F250 with a 6 speed manual transmission. It does a really superb job, getting over 12mpg with the gas engine. We find ourselves starting to slow down alittle since we have been almost everywere we want to go and are now going back to places we have been to and like to visit again occasionally. We recently purchased a Condo up north where we intend to spend our summers. During the winter we'll spend our time in the Airstream in Florida. We'll travel some in the winter from our base in Florida. We have always travelled alone, do not belong to WBCCI, and have caravaned only once, that being through the Copper Canyon with the rig on the train on a Airstream Company Caravan. When I first suggested it (Full Timing), my wife was against it but agreed to try it. Now she says that she wouldn't trade a day of the last 15 years for anything.
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Old 11-01-2006, 08:53 AM   #2
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Billco - welcome to the forums. After reading your post, all I can say is, "Wow!" What amazing experiences you must have had over the past 15 years of fulltiming! Glad you checked in with us here, and please do post more. I'm sure you've got lots of advice on destinations!
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Old 11-01-2006, 09:00 AM   #3
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Welcome to the Forums. We stand in awe of your experience, and in envy of your travel memories. Please stay on the Forums and share your knowledge with us newbies.
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Old 11-01-2006, 09:02 AM   #4
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Incredible! Congratulations. I should live so long--I got my first Airstream 9 years ago.

You could do us all a favor and start a thread on how to travel through Mexico. I'd like to try it and I'm no shrinking violet, but the rumors of narrow roads, crazy truck drivers, spotty fuel, scary cops, and robbers sort of put me off.

Anyone else have inputs on Mexico?

Zep
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Old 11-01-2006, 09:22 AM   #5
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billco---I can't tell you how much we appreciate your story. Wife and I stand on the brink of fulltiming with plans to begin next spring. We have, like you, camped an Rved most of our 45 years of married life. We have sold our home and have a small apt with only minimal furnishings. While we are both on the "same page" as to the decision, we're undecided as to weither we should give up the apt for the first few months. We realize we could always re-rent an apt and return. Still we're a little apprehensive about letting go of the apt. for a few months. Perhaps you could give a little insite into this last decision.
pieman
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Old 11-01-2006, 10:29 AM   #6
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We waited

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Lewis
billco---I can't tell you how much we appreciate your story. Wife and I stand on the brink of fulltiming with plans to begin next spring. We have, like you, camped an Rved most of our 45 years of married life. We have sold our home and have a small apt with only minimal furnishings. While we are both on the "same page" as to the decision, we're undecided as to weither we should give up the apt for the first few months. We realize we could always re-rent an apt and return. Still we're a little apprehensive about letting go of the apt. for a few months. Perhaps you could give a little insite into this last decision.
pieman
We kept our house for one summer while we travelled. We wanted to be sure about full timing. We didn't want it (Full Timing) to be a non-reversable decision. I'd be in no big hurry to give up the apartment as 6 months more or less won't make much difference in the overall picture.
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Old 11-01-2006, 02:25 PM   #7
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Welcome Billco. It must be quite an adventure travelling like that, like to hear some good stories.

Someday, I hope, I'll be there with you.
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Old 11-01-2006, 02:37 PM   #8
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Welcome

Billco, glad to have you aboard. You have pulled of what is a dream for many. Since you have had the 34 for many years and have had other units I would like to hear your opinion about Airstream and the quality. Pulling the same trailer for 160 K miles has to show some type of satisfaction with Airstream. I also think that not trading for a newer unit also shows a good basic design. Looking to hearing a lot from you.

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Old 11-01-2006, 02:50 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billco
We kept our house for one summer while we travelled. We wanted to be sure about full timing. We didn't want it (Full Timing) to be a non-reversable decision. I'd be in no big hurry to give up the apartment as 6 months more or less won't make much difference in the overall picture.
billco---Thanks for your reply and willingness to be a sounding board for those of us at this point. We had pretty much decided as you advise. We have taken on a seasonal workcamper job. Our thought was we would do this and then make the final move is we still feel as we do now. Again thanks for your input---pieman
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Old 11-01-2006, 03:00 PM   #10
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my wife and i are in invy of your great adventure,great story BILLCO---------hendrie42
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Old 11-01-2006, 03:35 PM   #11
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For Jim Clark:

We towed 6 different trailers over the 41 years but the only Airstream is our current 1992 Model 34 Excella. Other trailers were roomier but we had kids at home then. Airstream is best towing trailer we've had. I don't really know if that's due to it being an Airstream or that we tow with a "Pull Rite Hitch". This hitch is wonderfull. My wife said that if I'd ever go back to a Reese, she''d quit travelling. No sway, no truck feelings, only having to swing wider in filling stations, etc. However, we spend most of our time on the road-not gas stations. If we didn't travel so much we'd probably get a 5th wheel with a couple of slide-outs. Would like more room, BUT, towing so much it's nice to be low for trees in some parks and campgrounds. We've had no problems in our 160,000 plus miles other than tires, water heater and toliet replacments, not Airstream unique. I intend to keep my 1992 until, and if, it won't move anymore.
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Old 11-01-2006, 05:36 PM   #12
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Thanks for the Reply

Billco, thanks for the reply. With a trailer receiving such mileage I have to believe that the quality is built in. I also like the low profile as it saves me the cost of storing the trailer in a commercial yard. The Airstream is the only trailer I can get by the overhang of my home. I have to use a power dolly to park the unit in the backyard, the clearance is that close.

If you fill the urge and have the time please relate your Copper Canyon adventure. In years past a large parking lot near my home was used to stage motor coaches which were then loaded on a barge and pushed up the Mississippi River.I have also seen barges loaded with motor coaches tied up on the river visiting for Mardi Gras. If you happen to have pictures I would like to see them.

Thanks for Joining the Forum

Jim
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Old 11-01-2006, 06:18 PM   #13
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For Jim Clark

I believe the quality of the Airstream's in 1992 was really good. I understand that since then people feel that the quality has gone down. I really don't know, but we have had absolutely no coach problems and we are very satisfied. As far as the Copper Canyon trip, Airstream no longer runs the Company Caravans. Our company caravan was poorly laid out and poorly run. I think it's better that Airstream no longer runs caravans. Wally B. would be very unhappy with their performance. The Canyon and the trip was beautiful. We saw many people on "Tracks to Adventure" caravans making the same Copper Canyon trip, and it appeared that they run a very Professional caravan. From what I saw, I would not hesitate recommending them and would certainly book with them if I were a "Caravaneer".
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Old 11-01-2006, 06:23 PM   #14
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Thank You

Quote:
Originally Posted by billco
For Jim Clark

I believe the quality of the Airstream's in 1992 was really good. I understand that since then people feel that the quality has gone down. I really don't know, but we have had absolutely no coach problems and we are very satisfied. As far as the Copper Canyon trip, Airstream no longer runs the Company Caravans. Our company caravan was poorly laid out and poorly run. I think it's better that Airstream no longer runs caravans. Wally B. would be very unhappy with their performance. The Canyon and the trip was beautiful. We saw many people on "Tracks to Adventure" caravans making the same Copper Canyon trip, and it appeared that they run a very Professional caravan. From what I saw, I would not hesitate recommending them and would certainly book with them if I were a "Caravaneer".
Thank you for the information, I will check out Tracks to Adventure. I am looking forward to reading your future posts.

Linkie

http://www.trackstoadventure.com/

Jim
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