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Old 12-16-2012, 06:16 PM   #15
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2008 28' Safari SE
Tryon , North Carolina
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Originally Posted by HeadWest View Post
I've been wanting to own an Airstream ever since going in my first one in the mid 70's as a kid at an RV show. After many years of bicycle and motorcycle based camping trips, lots of boating and other activities, it feels like the time is about right to head down the road with an Airstream.

My wife and are a wanting to explore many areas in the west along with still enjoying some time in Michigan. The 28' floor plan has the most appeal, or actually for me the 30' does. However, I'd prefer to have it a little shorter for some campgrounds and a bit more flexibility for a tow vehicle hence staying with the 28' (probably an F150 with max tow package and either Ecoboast or the big block V8).

The resources on Air Forums are just wonderful. Although I have concerns over leaks, crappy tires, Airstream having slow responses on warranty, and many other items, I feel confident with having such a knowledgable community will help overcome some of those issues.

Although I know many recommend starting out with a used unit to get started, I really prefer to start with a new one and feel with a lot of thought and research will be happy with that decision. The bigger concern for me is having a good dealer both with the purchase and also for initial delivery and warranty issues at the beginning. If anyone has any experience with both Woodland Travel in Grand Rapids or with National RV of Detroit they can share I would certainly appreciate it.

If I can get my wife totally on board, I'd like to get a unit ordered soon. I'm hearing about 2-3 month wait for one that is ordered and I'd prefer to have it by mid to late spring. I have been able to get confirmation that I can order a 28' International Signature with the 16" wheels and Michelins as a factory option. I'd also like to have the floor the same as what is in the Serenity which Airstream is willing to switch that out ($500 to deviate from standard, hum, what else do I want to change). I know some are opting out from the skylights on custom orders but I love having as much light as possible, if the crabby factory units become a problem I'll switch them down the road with better aftermarket units.

I look forward to continuing to gather as much info as I can from Airforums and hopefully be able to offer insight and assistance to others in the future.
I have heard great things about Can-Am RV in Canada just across the boarder from Detroit. They are also experts on towing Airstreams.
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Old 12-16-2012, 07:00 PM   #16
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2012 27' FB International
Denver , Colorado
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We just bought brand new a couple weeks ago. We purchased a new 2012 model year and saved tons. We always dreamed of purchasing the newest year model and watching it be built in Jackson Center but, our savings was too good to be true on the 2012. We drove from Denver to NJ to get this great deal. I had priced them with dealerships nationwide for months so I knew the deal that we got was very good. If you want to read about our experience check out our blog. And, we did drive all the way to Can-Am to have new tires put on and to have our new Hensley dialed in. I wrote a blog post about that also. Like you, we priced out custom with everything we wanted and honestly, what we would have paid for a couple extra things that we thought were important at the time, we don't miss. And I certainly don't miss the price I would have paid!! Good luck!!
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Old 12-18-2012, 08:48 PM   #17
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2013 28' International
Bozeman , Montana
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Originally Posted by pappy19 View Post
I went from a 21' F-2350 CC-long bed to an F-250 Extended Cab-Short bed. Best thing I ever did. If you have kids or hauling grandkids alot, then the extended cab is not for you. If it's just the 2 of you and sometimes haul someone in the back seat, then a short bed extended cab is a great choice. If you are looking at F-150's, I would definately test the V-8's. You might also consider ordering an F-250 with the V-8 gas engine and load it like you want it. That's what I did. Best move I ever made. PM me on the X-plan where you can get a really good deal on a new Ford.

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We went from 140" wheelbase Tundra to 120" wheelbase Ram, used on the same trailer. What a difference turning, especially when getting fuel, turning the trailer, and getting around town without the trailer.

The stability issue is more or less true, depending on the tow vehicles compared, but can be resolved with a Propride/Hensley hitch.

doug k
Thanks Doug and Pap. I do appreciate they additional thoughts with going with a shorter wheelbase. I'm not sure if I want to give up the space in the cab or bed length so one more thing to ponder. Thanks Pap for the offer on the Ford plan. I do appreciate it and will keep it in mind.
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Old 12-18-2012, 08:52 PM   #18
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2013 28' International
Bozeman , Montana
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Originally Posted by BAB View Post
I have the 28' Intl Signature you are talking about. Have had it a year, and really, really love it. (Right now we're in a campground midway between home in NC and Sarasota...where we're taking a week off before Christmas. This is my third long trip with it, and there's little I'd change. I've done some mods ... the hanging locker was converted into shelving for food, I've changed out stock skylights with Maxim's, MAXX fans, upgraded converter with battery float built-in, the Fiamma Bike Rack, custom curtains/bedspread/matching valance boxes. Upgraded to the 16" wheels with Michelin LT's. TPMS system, Voyager back-up camera. WOW. A LOT of customizing, now that I look back! But, the size of the trailer is perfect. Didn't want the BR in the front which is the terrain of the 27's. I had the trailer equipped with the larger converter, BR TV, extra awnings. All of which I'm glad I did. Took a very long trip last summer and used both of the Honda 2000's so I could use the A/C. BTW, the 28 does come with the 15,000 BTU A/C, and I think most folks agree that the larger unit makes good sense. Pls contact me if you have any questions and I'll be happy to respond.

Thanks Bab. I take it your 28' has just the single A/C unit which is the way I want to go. I really rather have the 2nd fan instead of the A/C when boondocking. Did you order your's from the factory with the 16" wheels and LT's?
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Old 12-18-2012, 08:57 PM   #19
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2013 28' International
Bozeman , Montana
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Originally Posted by TouringDan View Post
HW

I am from Michigan, gone since 69, and have done a lot of motorcycle touring, so I was immediately drawn to your post.

I understand your desire to buy new and think that if you really study the floor plans, what options are available and talk to some owners (either personally or via this site) that you should be able to pick the Stream that works for you.

I agree with PAP that you should consider a V-8 powered 3/4 ton. I bought a 1/2 ton Tundra in 08 and have been very happy with it. I would probably buy it again if I were looking for a TV today, but my load is lighter than yours. If you go with the 1/2 ton EB you gain some fuel economy but give up some reliability and longevity IMHO. I would look seriously at the benefits of the 3/4 ton and a large V-8. The freedom to take it all with you and the confidence that you can do so reliably over the long haul.

Happy Airstream and TV shopping. I am sure that you both will make the best decision for you and your wife.

Dan
Thanks Dan for the additional truck thoughts. I'm really reluctant to go with an F150 with the EB. I have a lot of concerns with the longevity and reliability and would rather suffer with the crappy mileage with the 6.2 if I do an F150. Lots of reason to go with an F250 but I would rather be driving the F150 when not toying (and I don't think my wife would be very willing to drive the F250 much either).

I still love to ride a motorcycle but it is mostly shorter rides and trips at this point.
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Old 12-18-2012, 09:04 PM   #20
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2013 28' International
Bozeman , Montana
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Originally Posted by nilesrob View Post
We've been fortunate enough to have bought three Airstreams, two of which were new - what's not to love. Not saying this is right for you or anyone else, but this has been our experience.

We had a new (2005) 34' Classic that we towed with kids and pet extensively, from GA south to Florida, north to the White Mountains in NH, and west to Death Valley. I didn't find many places I couldn't tow or park it, and we love state and national campgrounds. So to me the difference of 28' vs 30' would be dependent on the floor plan you like the most.

We've since moved to a new (2008) 27' International and travel without kids but with two dogs, and we love it. Love the cork/linoleum floors versus carpeting (who ever thought carpeting would be good camping?), love the front bedroom (queen with access on both sides), and the rear dinette where the view usually is; love the panoramic windows.

For our tow vehicle, I use a (2008) diesel F250 4x4 crew cab. On this, I wouldn't change a thing. I have it tricked out to carry all (or most) of our toys and gear. We don't do a lot of off road, but have used 4 wheel drive enough times - either because we could or because it became useful in mud, wet grass, sand dunes - those kind of places; has allowed us to go places we might not have ventured otherwise.

I would highly recommend whatever you choose a good hitch system - we chose Hensley but there are others out there as well. Best investment ever.

I suspect whatever you choose - 30 or 28 - you will have years of joy. Safe travels!
Thanks Brad for the thoughts. I know if I do an F250 I'll go with the diesel and definitely 4 wheel drive with snow. Either Hensley or Propride seem like the best hitch options, I'm not really sure if there is a huge difference between the two.

Great to hear how happy you are with your 27'. I sure understand with the carpeting and am glad that the vinyl is the standard flooring in the Internationals.
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Old 12-18-2012, 09:08 PM   #21
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2013 28' International
Bozeman , Montana
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Originally Posted by Rooster55 View Post
We are just now purchasing a 2012 International 27FB. We've done a bit of all types of camping from the 40' Newmar diesel pusher to Class C RVs, you name it. We sold our beloved 1967 AS last year as I was caring for ill parents and it just sat. Out of all of them, the Airstream was the most fun, hands down. We had an RV buddy (he is in the biz) tell us that you'll have 5 things go wrong on every trip. So true, but so worth it. We typically had 50 things go right, communed with friends, family or nature and didn't sleep in a hotel bed (gag). The thought of fixing whatever ails us in the Airstream is so much easier to stomach than buying a shoddy piece of junk that we would have to "learn to like" at the lower price points. Just my two cents worth. Have a great weekend all....Becky.
Thanks for sharing your experiences Becky. My brother is purchasing a 40-43' diesel pusher soon and I just can't get excited about what they have to offer. The Airstream just seems to be the right fit for my wife and I. I really don't see another option and am willing to fix and maintain an Airstream.
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Old 12-18-2012, 09:10 PM   #22
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2013 28' International
Bozeman , Montana
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kiddoc1 View Post
I have heard great things about Can-Am RV in Canada just across the boarder from Detroit. They are also experts on towing Airstreams.
Thanks for the thoughts on Can-Am. I know they are a great dealer and they have the extensive hitch and towing knowledge. However, I'm just not willing to deal with buying in Canada. It is just a bit further then what I want to travel for purchase, warranty work and other service.
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Old 12-18-2012, 09:17 PM   #23
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2013 28' International
Bozeman , Montana
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 349
Images: 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by Travel Bird View Post
We just bought brand new a couple weeks ago. We purchased a new 2012 model year and saved tons. We always dreamed of purchasing the newest year model and watching it be built in Jackson Center but, our savings was too good to be true on the 2012. We drove from Denver to NJ to get this great deal. I had priced them with dealerships nationwide for months so I knew the deal that we got was very good. If you want to read about our experience check out our blog. And, we did drive all the way to Can-Am to have new tires put on and to have our new Hensley dialed in. I wrote a blog post about that also. Like you, we priced out custom with everything we wanted and honestly, what we would have paid for a couple extra things that we thought were important at the time, we don't miss. And I certainly don't miss the price I would have paid!! Good luck!!
Thanks Anna for sharing your experiences. I've been reading many of your blog entries even before you posted this message. It sounds like this has all worked out well for you with the purchase, hitch and all else other then loosing your veggies to customs.

Even with additional savings, I'm still pretty focused on doing an ordered unit. Hopefully I'll be able to get a reasonable price from a dealer that is not paying floorplanning and other costs with a stock unit.
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Old 12-18-2012, 09:17 PM   #24
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2007 23' International CCD
Lapeer , Michigan
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I'm in Lapeer with a 28' Classic 2004 that I may be putting up on the market in Spring. PM me if you are interested.
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Old 12-18-2012, 09:19 PM   #25
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2013 28' International
Bozeman , Montana
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Originally Posted by wheel interested View Post
I'm in Lapeer with a 28' Classic 2004 that I may be putting up on the market in Spring. PM me if you are interested.
Thanks Carol. I do appreciate you mentioning it but I'm definitely wanting to go with a new International at this point.
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