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Old 05-01-2013, 08:37 AM   #1
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College Station , Texas
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Smile Newbie/Wannabe Airstream Owner

Hey there everyone!

I am a long time admirer of Airstreams and have just recently decided to go for it and make the dream a reality (once I figure out what I'm looking for). How in the heck did you all decide what model, vintage or new-er (definitely not new...can't afford those bad boys), size, a project or one that's ready to roll etc.?? I'm in love with the idea of the cute little Bambis but really think I'd prefer a larger one and that queen size bed thing is calling my name. Anywho, I will be stalking the forums in search of great wisdom from you people. Y'all sure seem like a fun bunch!


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Old 05-01-2013, 10:04 AM   #2
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Common Sense , Texas
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Welcome to the forum, Kimmy. Most people select their trailer based on needs, wants, and of course, budget. I suggest you spend some time actually looking inside Airstreams to determine what size and floor plan would be best for you.


"To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical."-- Thomas Jefferson
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Old 05-01-2013, 10:05 AM   #3
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2013 25' FB Flying Cloud
2011 23' FB Flying Cloud
Branson , Missouri
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Kimmy, you've hit upon one of my pet peeves about Airstream; they have no showroom!

As you can see we have a 2013 Flying Cloud 25. Before that we had a 2011 Flying Cloud 23.

With a showroom experience, I definitely believe we would have bought the 25 in the first place and saved ourselves some time and expense.

Do yourself a favor. Colonial Airstream in New Jersey has a large inventory (most of the time) of different models and decor selections. AND they do a wonderful job of showing each trailer photographically.

When you see something you like, your next step will be to see if there's a trailer nearby that matches.

That said, you can save yourself a lot of time and effort by going to Colonial and see and experience their huge inventory. When we were there to pick up our new trailer, they have 88 new units!

If you opt for the previously owned, this forum is the best option to find used units.

Good luck in your search!
2013 25 FC FB (Twin)
2013 Suburban 2500

2011 23 FC FB
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Old 05-01-2013, 12:21 PM   #4
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Kimmy, we went through the same trauma two years ago. After looking inside a few units we settled on something with a rear queen walk-around. THAT decision made looking a lot easier because it eliminated anything under 28 feet. We haunted the classifieds on here, and we search rvtrader (dot) com. We found our perfect AS on rvtrader, not too far away, and properly cared for and priced. You Can Do It! Particularly in Texas as there are lots of units I would have looked at except they were down by you, so far away from Virginia. Since May 2011 we've camped in 29 states and 2 provinces. We'll add two more states this summer. They have wheels, so roll 'em.
Greg and Linda Heuer
'99 Excella 30 w/HAHA - The Silver Otter
'08 Chevy LTZ 2500HD 6.6 DuraMax
TAC VA-18 | WBCCI 1927 - Unit 149 | AIR 53869
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Old 05-01-2013, 12:39 PM   #5
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Milford , Ohio
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Nine years ago my girlfriend, now my wife, and I were looking at all sorts of RV types and brands. I'd always thought Airstreams were cool but in my search only saw junked or empty shells for sale, and didn't want a project trailer.

Then I found an ad for a 31' 1979 with a rear bedroom and rare full sized bed. I knew the length would give us the interior space we needed, and price was right. I was less concerned about the model year since everything worked when I inspected it.

So in short, while I always liked Airstream, the reason I own one now is simply finding one for sale at the time I was ready to buy and RV.

When life gives you lemons, don't make lemonade. Go get the oranges that you really want.
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Old 05-01-2013, 02:21 PM   #6
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Tucson , Arizona
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Another helpful thing to do is to locate an Airstream rally near where you live and ask if you might come by and talk to real Airstream owners and get tours of different sizes, floor plans, etc. (They will most likely say "sure"...) It is very helpful to discuss options with real life owners who are using their rigs...find out what they like and don't like about their rigs....and if they'd rather have bought a different model/size. There is nothing better than spending time inside Airstreams to determine your own needs. Good luck with your search...make it an adventure!
TB & Greg and Abbey Schnauzer
AirForums #21900 . Membership Chair, 4C
Unit #3954
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Old 05-01-2013, 02:53 PM   #7
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Creston Valley , British Columbia
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Kimmy, I sure hope it works out for you.

Just to share our own newcomer experiences with you:

A few things to consider are: (a) your budget, (b) your prior RVing or camping experience, (c) your general level of mechanical/electrical/plumbing handiness, (d) the type of camping you prefer (wilderness or citified?), (e) your tow vehicle's capacity, and (f) your list of "must haves" and "can do withouts."

In our case:

(a) The budget could have afforded a bigger unit, but we wanted to buy something with no payments and with some money left in the bank. We found a 2-year old on a dealer's lot.

(b) No prior RV experience, but lots of tent camping. Backing a trailer was a challenge!

(c) Low. Thankfully everything was in good shape when we bought the Bambi and under the dealership's one-year warranty, as a lot of stuff did go wrong the first year.

(d) More on the wild side. So small was beautiful. We are a senior couple plus a dog: kids or grandchildren would change the size equations.

(e) Our Toyota Tacoma wouldn't be happy towing anything over 5000 lbs. Buying a bigger unit would mean a new truck, as well, adding to the cost. If we watch our speed, we get about 15 mpg. With a cap on the back of our truck, we have room for our array of gear.

(f) We figured we could do without most things in an RV. Nearly 6 years later, Len is happy as-is; Jeanne would prefer a unit with a dry bath and some kitchen counter space. But hey, the wet bath provides showers and the food prep moves to the table.

The East-West bed model makes it hard if someone frequestly has to get up in the middle of the night or gets claustophobic, but the dinette provides a second bed option. (Some Bambis have a North-South bed, but they still leave one person against the wall with no easy exit.)

Also, the layouts differ between models. One thing we both like about the Bambi are its big windows front and back. We don't see the back view in some of the bigger models.

We also like that we can fit nicely into the smaller sites at some of the older National Park and Forest Service campgrounds in the western states.

You might think, also, about whether you have space to store a big trailer at home, if you don't have another RV now.

If you visit your nearest dealer having done some homework, they will show you their inventory on the lot. You can also search the floor plans for new models on Airstream's web site.

Happy hunting!
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Old 05-01-2013, 03:11 PM   #8
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TB gave you good advice about seeking out a rally and looking around. As luck would have it, there's one in San Marcos at the end of the month.

Go down, check out a bunch of Airstreams of different sizes and ages. Talk to a lot of people. You'll have a great time.
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Old 05-02-2013, 10:38 AM   #9
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Thanks so much everyone! You've given me lots to think about and I appreciate it.
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Old 05-02-2013, 11:29 AM   #10
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1991 29' Excella
Akron , Ohio
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Good luck Kimmy!

Remember that the rear twins have been converted to a rear Queen which may open up your options considerably.

That said, you will decide very quickly after having seen a few. I *like* photo layouts but I LOVE going into A/S's during open house visits!
Nancy and Paul..........TAC OH 34
Five Airedales and One Chocolate Lab
(no they don't all get to go in the AS at once!)
1991 Excella 29 foot w/ProPride 3P hitch
2006 Jeep Commander-V8 4.7L Tow package
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Old 05-02-2013, 04:17 PM   #11
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You might pickup Sean Michaels new e-book

How to Buy an Airstream: C.S. Michael: Kindle Store

It's only 3 bucks and it has a lot of good info.

Sean and his wife Kristy have a website that is full of entertaining and informative videos.

Welcome to the addiction that is Airstream.

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Old 05-02-2013, 04:47 PM   #12
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Thanks! I will check it out!
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Old 05-02-2013, 04:57 PM   #13
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Round Rock , Texas
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Welcome from Round Rock!

We have friends in College Station too! Now we have another!

The book will answer many questions. From there it is up to you to ask!

Are you thinking "new" airstream?
Peace and Blessings..
WBCCI# 30676
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Old 05-02-2013, 06:18 PM   #14
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Send a message via Yahoo to AIR-Quarius Send a message via Skype™ to AIR-Quarius
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