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Old 01-18-2019, 12:50 PM   #1
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Fairhope , Alabama
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New member - Alabama Gulf Coast


I'm new to the forum and we are interested in an Airstream. My husband and I are empty nesters and "semi" full timers by campground hosting. We've talked with some Airstream owners while we were hosting and there is a lot to learn!

We have been campers for 35+ years. Currently we have a 26ft. trailer and are interested in an Airstream in that length range and up to about 28 ft. Have looked at new, and, of course, they are beautiful.

Our main questions regarding buying used is are there years that are better than others in terms of features or other issues? Since we will be newbies to Airstream we don't particularly want a big renovation project, but we're okay with some cosmetic renovations.

Thanks for reading my intro and I look forward to getting to know others on these forums and getting some wise purchasing advice!


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Old 01-18-2019, 01:14 PM   #2
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I think the biggest recent improvement was in 2015/16 time period the ACs went to the ducted design. This makes for a more pleasant finish inside, and is a bit quieter.

If you are considering older than that, then things that have changed over the last 20 years are so are:

Interior walls -older units covered with fabric lovingly called mouse fur-newer units have aluminum walls.
Flooring-older units had carpeting-newer units have hard surface flooring similar to sheet vinyl.
Upholstry- older units had fabrics-newer units have ultra leather.
Windows-some older units had different types of windows. Varies by year and trim level.
Window treatments-blinds vs shades
Cabinetry-many older units, especially in the Classic, had full wood cabinets. Now the cabinets vary depending on trim level.
Bathrooms-way back when the rear bathrooms had a tub/shower. Now most units only have a shower.

I suggest reading all the airstream classified ads here and pouring over the pictures so you can see all of these things.


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Old 01-18-2019, 01:25 PM   #3
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Welcome to the forum MrsMc!

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Old 01-18-2019, 07:17 PM   #4
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Hello from snowy Colorado: You have found the right website for all things Airstream. Airstream travel trailers are unique "glampers" if I can use that term. Luxury in a smaller space. They are famous for their aerodynamic shape and stable towing performance. I find them well built and certainly they last a long time.

They are smaller than other campers of similar lengths. I find them comfortable as most of the time I'm sitting or laying down, not standing up. But I have bonked my head on the door going out many, many times, as well of the overhead lockers over the kitchen sink.

The new "wide body" and improved Alcoa exterior aluminum coating was introduced about year 2000. I've seen reports of rain water leaks softening the rear floor on some mid ought trailers. The new hot water heating system on high end trailers have given some problems. You can learn, and should learn, as much as you can about a particular model you might be interested in. You can do that right here.

Air Forums has a list of "Airstream inspectors" that are willing to do a thorough inspection of a trailer that may be too far away for you to check over yourself. An inspection by an experienced Airstreamer will provide more knowledge about the trailer's condition for your review before negotiating a price.

We've enjoyed Airstream travel for many, many years. This is our 1986 Limited 34'. It has been in the family since new and all over this beautiful country of ours. It really is an Airstream community.

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Old 01-19-2019, 01:35 PM   #5
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1991 34' Excella
1963 26' Overlander
1961 26' Overlander
Central , Mississippi
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Welcome aboard MrsMc. I enjoy camping at Meaher ST park several times a year. Love your area.
Hi Ho Silver RV! Vernon, Sarah, Mac the Border Collie -
A honkin' long 34' named AlumaTherapy
and a 26' '63 Overlander, Dolly
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Old 01-20-2019, 03:37 PM   #6
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Fairhope , Alabama
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Thanks to all!

Thank you for the warm welcome. I'm mainly the scribe here and will ask MrMc to read those specific boards for different years and models.

Yes, we do have some nice state parks here in our area - a very large popular one, Gulf State Park, and others such as Meaher located on Mobile Bay.

We are going to try and get some campground host jobs this summer in a cooler (relative) area. Last year we campground hosted at Gulf State Park and it was brutally hot even for us who should be used to it.

I haven't looked around at all the boards. Perhaps there is discussion on campground hosting and volunteering, too.

Thanks again everyone!

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Old 01-20-2019, 03:45 PM   #7
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Welcome and enjoy the adventure
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Old 01-20-2019, 07:30 PM   #8
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2014 25' FB Flying Cloud
Des Peres , Missouri
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If you buy a pre 2012, make sure to ch do for water damage at rear bumper/ trunk at where it meets the floor
This area as the sealed properly and the flat trunk lid fed water to the floor.
Best to either have a moisture tester or pull the belly pan down in the back area and take a look
Fixable but at a cost
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Old 01-20-2019, 07:42 PM   #9
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2018 28' International
Fayetteville , Georgia
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Whatever you pick, you will be much happier with a dual A/C Airstream. One A/C is simply not enough in the south.

2018 International Serenity
Cute wife...
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