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Old 03-28-2018, 12:14 PM   #1
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Livermore , California
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New Member - Bay Area

Greetings,

New member here, stumbled on the forum looking for information on Airstream.

My wife and I decided to start looking at a trailer. We love to travel and go back and forth between tent camping and staying in hotels. I'm a pretty serious amateur nature photographer and spend a lot of time traveling. We love being in the wilderness, but sleeping in a tent wears us down after a few days.

We started looking at trailers, from cheapo sub-20' and were appalled by the quality of materials. Then we looked at Winnebago and Lance, and these seemed to have better materials, but design isn't all that efficient and it seemed like we kept wanting to to bigger because this or that inside the trailer wasn't laid out well.

Our first instinct was to dismiss Airstream because of price, but once we ruled out the cheap garbage and were considering Lance, it's not a bridge too much farther to Airstream. We looked at a Basecamp and were immediately sold. Great materials, very thoughtful design. It amazed us that the Basecamp felt more roomy than a 23'+ Lance.

Anyway, I'm starting to educate myself, but not buying right away. We have a long-planned trip this summer, a couple weeks on Prince William Sound on a private yacht. Once we get back, we'll start looking for an Airstream, but it will be this fall at the earliest, probably next spring realistically.

It will be just the two of us, and we're looking at comparing the Basecamp between a Sport or Flying Cloud 19CB. Late model used is possible. I'm happy to learn whatever I can from the folks here.

Cheers,
Larry
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Old 03-28-2018, 12:34 PM   #2
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Spend some time at a dealer that has different models and hang out in them for as long as you can. Pretend you are camping. Move around (at the same time) etc. Maybe consider renting one for a week or two. It can be expensive to buy one that ends up being too small, and then moving up to a larger one.
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Old 03-28-2018, 12:52 PM   #3
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Welcome to the forum. Always good to have another member.

Another source of information may be your local unit of the AS club, WBCCI.org. I'm sure you would be welcome to attend a rally or two as a guest. You will find people who are happy to share.

Wishing you success!
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Old 03-28-2018, 01:06 PM   #4
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Now, look at the Oliver. Look at the T@B trailers. Look at the Rpod. Look at the Sport 22, 23s and 25s ASs. Look at the Bollus. Do some research on 4 season coaches and understand the AS is not. Research is your friend.

Where to store, how to tow, what hitch, what tow vehicle, what mattress, what electrical system, what gear, what model has your features, what cost to expect, who can fix it, what tires, where to go, when to go there, and many more details are in your future.

If you are serious about an AS and are traveling anywhere near Jackson Center Ohio, you might stop by the factory for a tour. They are expanding and that has an effect on their production you might want to consider.

There are now three AS dealers in the Bay area. Toscano RV in Los Banos, Bay Area in Fairfield and South Bay in San Martin. The last two are part of the Airstream Adventures Group that includes dealers in Washington, Idaho, and Oregon.

Good Luck with your search adventure. Just know thy self and buy the right coach once. Trading up or down is a costly process. Used is the best and most cost effective process, but layouts and features have changed so understand what you want and or need to make you happy.

Hope to see your smile down the road someday soon. Pat

Edit - also look at the AS 20. It has a unique layout that some find perfect.
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Old 03-28-2018, 01:19 PM   #5
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Greetings from the Florida Panhandle

Welcome to the Forums. We're glad to have you with us.

The Basecamp is a great unit for basic camping. If you want a bit more comfort and longevity, look the 19' Airstreams. These are still quite compact, but give a real bed, a real kitchen, and a real dry bathroom.

I would also suggest going to an Airstream Dealer and spend some significant time sitting in each the units that may interest you.

Alos, check out the Casitas. They are pretty cool.

Best wishes in your quest.

Brian
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Old 03-28-2018, 05:54 PM   #6
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Hello from Colorado: Many folks have had similar experiences as you. I went to an RV show and walked in and out of many travel trailers. I then visited the Airstream display and was blown away by the quality of the design, materials, construction and features. There was no comparison including the price. Airstreams are expensive, but they last a long time. Ours is a 1986 and still going strong.

You are wise to research the various brands and find what suits your needs. An Airstream is not for everyone, that's for sure.

David
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Old 03-29-2018, 06:50 PM   #7
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Thanks everyone for the warm welcome, and all the recommendations. I'll check out all the models listed here.

It's funny, there is a class of people who hear we're looking at an Airstream and immediately tell us we're wasting money. When pressed for an alternative, they have nothing to suggest. I get the desire to dismiss AS based on price; I'm still not sure we're past that ourselves. But, because we're not planning to purchase until fall at the earliest, it give us plenty of time to research.

We've looked at RPod and there was something I didn't like; I don't remember what. We looked at so many RVs that day. It might have been the size of the wet bath on the model we were looking at.

South Bay Airstream didn't have a Sport that we could check out. The salesman told us we wanted Basecamp anyway and to not bother with Sport. I think he believed through pressure sales, he'd have us hitching one up by the end of the day. We intend to visit the dealer in Fairfield hoping it's a more hospitable experience.

I went into this thinking to buy new to get the latest tech, but through reading the forums so far I'm leaning more towards used and doing upgrades myself. So, I'll continue to take in all the info here and ask questions when I need to.

Best,
Larry
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Old 03-29-2018, 06:59 PM   #8
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Hello and welcome from SD.

Do spend the time at an Airstream dealer going through them, sitting in them etc.

Enjoy your trip to PWS, we lived in AK for 9 years.
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Old 03-29-2018, 07:42 PM   #9
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Airstream dealer in Fairfield has a great selection and I have found them to not be high pressure. All units are inside a large warehouse, very nice environment.
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Old 03-29-2018, 08:09 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MotoMannequi View Post
Thanks everyone for the warm welcome, and all the recommendations. I'll check out all the models listed here.

It's funny, there is a class of people who hear we're looking at an Airstream and immediately tell us we're wasting money. When pressed for an alternative, they have nothing to suggest. I get the desire to dismiss AS based on price; I'm still not sure we're past that ourselves. But, because we're not planning to purchase until fall at the earliest, it give us plenty of time to research.

We've looked at RPod and there was something I didn't like; I don't remember what. We looked at so many RVs that day. It might have been the size of the wet bath on the model we were looking at.

South Bay Airstream didn't have a Sport that we could check out. The salesman told us we wanted Basecamp anyway and to not bother with Sport. I think he believed through pressure sales, he'd have us hitching one up by the end of the day. We intend to visit the dealer in Fairfield hoping it's a more hospitable experience.

I went into this thinking to buy new to get the latest tech, but through reading the forums so far I'm leaning more towards used and doing upgrades myself. So, I'll continue to take in all the info here and ask questions when I need to.

Best,
Larry

"Looking at an Airstream" is Not wasting your money. Airsteam is the best product out there, period. We have been Airstream camping for twelve years and are at 1,900 nights, and 170,000 miles of Airstream towing. Don't let any neophytes tell you that you are that you are on the wrong track.

Brian
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Old 03-30-2018, 07:18 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MotoMannequi View Post
We intend to visit the dealer in Fairfield hoping it's a more hospitable experience.


Best,
Larry
My wife and I found our experience in Fairfield a delight. Henry, our salesman, was very low pressure. We visited there at least 5 times before buying, and these were wandering around kicking the tires, opening cabinets, flopping on beds, asking deep questions visits. His highest sales pressure tactic was, "I promised my daughters a laptop when I make my next sale." We didn't get daily calls bugging us to buy. The day we bought we had gotten an email saying come on down we got sandwiches and good prices today.

They have an extensive inventory and are even more than willing to show me them after I bought.
Drop in ask for Henry, tell him Virginia & Matti sent you. If you want an introduction let me know and most Saturdays I can meet you there. I live just down the road. Their service department is great also.

Matti
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Old 03-30-2018, 08:57 AM   #12
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Drop in ask for Henry, tell him Virginia & Matti sent you. If you want an introduction let me know and most Saturdays I can meet you there. I live just down the road. Their service department is great also.
I'll do that, thanks so much Matti.
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Old 03-30-2018, 08:58 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by moosetags View Post
"Looking at an Airstream" is Not wasting your money. Airsteam is the best product out there, period. We have been Airstream camping for twelve years and are at 1,900 nights, and 170,000 miles of Airstream towing. Don't let any neophytes tell you that you are that you are on the wrong track.

Brian
Love it. Thanks Brian.
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Old 03-30-2018, 09:02 AM   #14
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Hello and welcome from SD.

Do spend the time at an Airstream dealer going through them, sitting in them etc.

Enjoy your trip to PWS, we lived in AK for 9 years.
Thanks!
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