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Old 07-22-2014, 05:59 AM   #1
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fredericksburg , New Brunswick
Join Date: Jul 2014
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New member introduction

Hi everyone,

I have been researching and looking for an airstream trailer for my family for a number of years. We are a family of 5 (kids 3, 10 and 13) from rural New Brunswick (Candada) and are looking for a trailer that will not necessarily sleep all of us, but be reliable, towable, and value-laden. I love the classic look of the older, vintage airstreams and can't wait to own one.

This Air Forum site has already been informative to me and I look forward to learning more.

If this is not inappropriate (please let me know if it is), could I ask for advice on the following airstream listing: the right trailer for your retro car! | park models | City of Halifax | Kijiji

From the photos (or lack thereof) what sorts of questions should I be asking the seller? Do you think it is worth pursuing this trailer for the price?

Many thanks,
Andrea
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Old 07-22-2014, 09:13 AM   #2
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1973 21' Globetrotter
Houston , Texas
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Hi, and welcome to the forums!

I love your list of requirements: "reliable, towable, and value-laden."

The first two are achievable--I'm still debating whether any RV can qualify on the third point .

Anyway, no harm in asking members to peruse an ad for a trailer. Having looked at the one you referenced, I would say that the entire list of features was cut and pasted from a sales brochure, and the question is what condition is the trailer in now that it is 40 years old?

It looks nice on the exterior, which is a good start. It looks "original" on the interior. Some people may prize this as it means the previous owner didn't molest it too badly. My concern is that if the previous owner never replaced the 40 year old carpeting or upholstery, then I would assume that it is sitting on its original torsion axles (the rubber in them does not last 40 years), has had no modern upgrades, and very likely has issues that are typical of 40 year old unrenovated trailers (floor rot, frame damage, non-functional appliances, etc.).

Click on the "portal" tab at the top of the page, and when you get to that page, you can download a buyer's inspection checklist. The checklist will help to to know what to look for, and what questions to ask. In general, I would say to ask what improvements/repairs have been made to the trailer. The problem with this trailer is that it is being sold by a dealer, so you are probably going to have to figure out what is new and what is old by your own inspection--they probably won't be able to tell you.

In general, if you want a trailer that is ready to camp in, then expect to pay $10k+ for it. The value in an old Airstream is mostly in the shell. Those are worth a few thousand dollars. The way you get up to the $10k+ price tag is with a lot of labor and replacement parts. If there hasn't been a lot of labor and replacement parts, then it probably isn't worth what is being asked for it.

Also, there are Airstreams with bunk-beds--this may help you to get the sleeping capacity you need.

good luck!
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Old 07-22-2014, 09:54 AM   #3
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1987 25' Sovereign
Oregon , Ohio
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Hello and welcome.
My daughter and son-in-law have hade two Argosies, a 24 footer and a 29 footer with bunks. They loved them both and with four kids the bunks really are nice. The Argosy was meant as an entry level mostly for families.
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Old 07-23-2014, 05:27 AM   #4
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fredericksburg , New Brunswick
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Thank you for such a warm welcome and informative reply! I really appreciate your taking the time to browse through the photos and offer your comments and suggestions, which I receive with thanks.

The checklist is terrific and I will certainly have it with me if/when we take a look at the trailer (it is 5 hours away, and the seller has not responded to my questions yet... Which I believe is not a good omen).

I look forward to learning more as we quest for our trailer.

Thanks again, Andrea
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Old 07-23-2014, 08:06 AM   #5
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1973 21' Globetrotter
Houston , Texas
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Beware of the dangers of driving too far to look at a trailer. That danger is that nobody wants to go home empty-handed, and you will convince yourself that a dent can probably be popped out, that the floor rot is an easy fix, that a non-working refrigerator is no big deal, etc.. Before you know it, you've talked yourself into a big project.

It is interesting that the dealer selling that Airstream appeared to be offering an extended warranty (at the very bottom of the ad). Hard to imagine anyone warrantying a 40 year old trailer--but as long as you don't have to drive 5 hours to exercise the warranty, you might really be able to capitalize on it.

Also interesting is that the trailer is categorized as a "park model" in the ad system. Maybe it is because it has no grey water tanks (Airstream didn't start installing them until the mid 70's), and therefore has to have a sewer connection in order to use the kitchen sink or shower. Maybe I am just over-analyzing.

Good luck!
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Old 07-23-2014, 10:20 AM   #6
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Lake Charles , Louisiana
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Welcome :-)
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