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Old 04-28-2015, 08:58 PM   #1
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Single newbie, lot of questions☺️

Looking at a 2014 International Signature 27FB for possible first trailer. My first question to all you single ladies who own trailers, is a 27ft trailer to much to handle? What items should be on my check list for purchase, this 2014 is a new trailer. Do I need an inspection? I have only seen pictures of this airstream. Help I really need a lot of advice.Thanks Kathy
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Old 04-28-2015, 11:47 PM   #2
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Not a single lady, am a man, but own a 27FB. Sure, any determined woman or man can handle this trailer. Backing is a bit trickier without a second set of eyes but that applies to any trailer. If I were single I'd probably opt for a smaller trailer. Don't need as big a bed nor as much storage. The smaller the trailer the more places that it can fit.
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Old 04-29-2015, 07:19 AM   #3
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Are you going to live in it full-time? I am a single woman with a 27 Twin and I love it! I have been full-time for about 18 months. If you are going to be FT, then I would recommend the 27'. Backing up will not be an issue after a while, just use the scoop method as shown on Long, Long Honeymoon. Also take your time backing up, get out of the trailer, or another option is to get a rear view camera. I get out a lot and use the camera if it is a tight spot with trees. I like the Twin option since friends come to visit and my regular travel partner, a 70 pound German Shepard sleeps there between friends visits. There are also FT travelers who have the 23' model and live, work and play in it and are quite happy with it. I am assuming since it is new, it will have a 2-year warranty so anything that you find wrong you can get fixed under warranty.
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Old 04-29-2015, 02:26 PM   #4
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There are several things you might consider.

1. 12-volt batteries can be very heavy. I don't believe my wife would have the strength to carry the battery to/from the trailer and lift it in and out of the battery storage box.
2. I know my wife cannot operate our manual awning. She is too short to get the leverage she needs to extend the support bars. You may want to consider a power operated awning.
3. Weight distribution bars on the hitch can require a quite a bit of strength when hitching up. Cranking the hitch up higher can reduce the effort needed, but in some situations it's difficult to raise the hitch high enough.

These may or may not be issues for you. I'd suggest you get with someone who has a trailer (AS or SOB) and see if you are able to handle them. If so, go for it!
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Old 04-29-2015, 07:10 PM   #5
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We met a very nice retired single lady who loves to travel. She had a 23, or maybe a 25. She had pulled it 1500 miles over a week already when we met her. She was towing with a V8 Expedition. She backed in right next to us. She had a Hensley hitch which isn't the easiest thing to connect to. We had a nice time talking Airstreams.

As I learned years ago, there is nothing a woman can't do! We humans are 99% alike.

Trailering is fun. It is somewhat mechanical. Maybe you are experienced working with your hands. There are very good checklists used to ensure everything is set when you pull away, and when you make camp.

To me, a 27 footer means a strong half ton, or even a three quarter ton pick up would be best to tow it with. A rear view camera in the truck will greatly aid hitching up. Backing up is an acquired skill. Anyone can learn it. At first, go slow, and jump out of the vehicle frequently to insure you are lined up and not backing into a tree branch or picnic table.

Things you have to learn are driving dynamics change significantly with a trailer in tow. Slow acceleration, wide turns, extended stopping distances, limited visibility for lane changes, bouncy ride, where to get fuel, etc. You will learn hitches, weight distribution, trailer lights, trailer brakes, leveling, and the like. Then you learn propane system, electrical system, water system, fridge operation, emptying waste water tanks, and the like.

I have found campgrounds safe and friendly. I see no reason why you can't enjoy Airstream travel.

David
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Old 04-29-2015, 08:52 PM   #6
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Carrying batteries? A smile and polite asking for help, and maybe a cold beer, will get me to help. Backing? Practice in an empty parking lot with cardboard boxes. Use the GOAL method. Get Out And Look, often, when backing, as you travel the learning curve. He sly hitches are not hard to hitch up, with some practice and a couple of visual aid Easy Hitch balls on telescoping poles. Simple, effective. If you want to, you can do it.


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Old 04-29-2015, 10:53 PM   #7
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Kathy, not addressing the usual what to look for in a trailer purchase, my wife and I are currently looking to buy with me doing most of the research. I haven't come across anything that she would not be able to comfortably handle and we're looking at the 25, 27 and 28. Nothing that might be gender restrictive. There could be times when you may not be able to physically manage maintenance (ie as mentioned above moving batteries possibly), or you may not be mechanically inclined, but I've found there's usually a fix, sometimes as easy as asking for help or hiring someone, or just sitting down and thinking about it. Those times will probably be few and far between. Of course, this is between you and me. Otherwise, I might be out a ride! Seriously, there's not much there that can't be learned and handled by just about anyone. Best of luck with the search.
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Old 04-29-2015, 11:31 PM   #8
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Hi there! Not sure if my input is helpful at all... I'm working on a '78 Ambassador 28' which is still sitting not being towed but hey Hopefully this year I will be both towing and living FT in it! I look back on my purchase and think wow, was I insane? and the answer is yes, but with good intentions. I knew next to nothing about how all the systems work (study up about water tanks vs. city fill, 110v v. 12v. dumping tanks, propane... to name a few) and now I'm rebuilding the whole trailer, but not without help. You can't be overeducated and you can't have too many friends to help out. Enjoy!
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Old 04-30-2015, 01:46 AM   #9
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Agree with VeeVee - depends on your long-term plans. I bought my 27' FC because my intent is to someday full-time.

Even with that in mind, I wondered what I had gotten myself into when the dealership brought my trailer home. It looked massive in the driveway! However, it certainly didn't seem that way after a relatively short time. When you're going down the highway, an Airstream looks the same in the rear-view mirror - whatever the length. However, you will have to make allowances for your length when you take sharp corners, need to access gas stations etc.

I have no problem hitching/unhitching. Some of the hitch components are heavy, but if you can manage some moderate weight-lifting in a gym, you'll be fine.

Another thing about Airstreams - they tow magnificently. I live in one of the worse places to trailer; can't get anywhere without going over a mountain range. The Airstream makes it easier, but I am also pretty cautious.

I have zero aptitude in the mechanical department. Thankfully, the FaN (nic for my trailer) has been most accommodating - have had relatively few maintenance issues.

However, when the warranty is over and as the trailer ages, there will be issues. This forum is a great resource for that. If that doesn't help, you will have to factor outside maintenance into your trailering budget.
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Old 04-30-2015, 05:32 AM   #10
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Buy the trailer You will Love it and overcome any obstacle. Technique over Brawn. Like others have said the Awning is very awkward to extend, I have to use a 4' step ladder to help lock the bars. Maybe a small wagon to haul the hitch close to the receiver to install it to the tow vehicle ? (technique) There is a way and this Web Site has the information you need, just ask.
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Old 04-30-2015, 12:32 PM   #11
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Why would you want something so big? We wish our 23' were smaller. Just more expense and hassle.


Lynn and Chuck in Dewdrop the Airstream
Mountains of NC
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Old 04-30-2015, 02:07 PM   #12
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Buying from a dealer? Then if new should have two year warranty, just make sure it has not been titled prior.

Towing a 25, 27, 28 or a 30 is no different to me, just the longer the trailer the deeper into the turn one needs to drive prior to making the turn. If buying from a dealer ask them to give you a driving lesson and backing lesson and then take it to a school or church parking lot and do some practice between the lines.

The only reason to lift batteries is for winter storage and charging. If you are involved in this I suggest two things (1) take a picture of the wiring with your phone before you touch anything, it can be a little confusing six months later (2) pay a high school neighbor $20.00 to go to the storage yard with you and help get the batteries out and put them back in.

I doubt you'll regret making the purchase. We run into a lot of single RV travelers of both sexes and they all seem to have a great time. Go for it.

Bud
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