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Old 09-11-2007, 01:55 PM   #1
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What to buy?

Hello, I'm not sure this is the right location for a sort of general question—what do I buy? We've never had an RV. We are interested in the International CCD because the 22' looked closer to what we were looking for (and those wrap around windows look great), but read more and you'll see what our limits and needs are. Thanks in advance.

I've been looking at Airstream info for weeks and have become overwhelmed. We have a 2002 Tundra with the V8. It's rated at about 7,000 lbs. for towing and tongue weight of around 1,000. It only has 54,000 miles, so it's not broken in. I'm not buying a new truck for towing. We have an '06 4Runner with the V6, so that one doesn't qualify for anything but the smallest units. So there's some limits. I read about people towing trailers that weigh more than Toyota recommends, but I think that's unwise because of extra wear on the drivetrain, suspension, etc., and won't do it.

We've been looking at various floorplans and being 5'10" and 5'9", the beds seem small—and a 48" double bed is very narrow. How do people feel about such small beds?

We looked the specs for the new Safari Sport, but it appears to be built with undersize axle, insufficient fresh water storage and only one battery—it appears to be a toy. A good start, but needs the Canadian axle, etc., and it would seem to be a good choice—and that bed may be uncomfortable with all those seams.

We'd like to find a model with a queen bed, lots of water and 2 batteries, even a sofa, dry bath, but they all weigh too much, unless we've missed something. The International 22 seems to be close to what we are looking for—no sofa, but a chair and a table—but the bed is 48 x 76 or 78 (can't read those little numbers), it seems to have 1 battery (some specs say 2 ??). How do people do with such narrow beds? Is there a way to get them larger?

We travel all over the US and Canada—last year we went far north of the Arctic Circle in NW Canada and saw a motorhome get stuck getting on a car ferry across the MacKenzie R. because of too much overhang. I can't tell just how much overhang these models have—have you had similar problems? I'm sure some couples would be uncomfortable in a 22' and others could be happy in a 16' (have you ever camped in a small tent when it rains for a couple of days straight? The true test of a marriage along with remodeling the whole house—we've done both).

We live in western Colorado and are 200+ miles from the two Airstream dealers—any recommendations or warnings about the dealers?

What does CCD stand for?

It looks like models don't change much year to year—how many years back can I go and get something substantially the same as the 2007 or 2008?

Thanks for any answers, recommendations, suggestions.
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Old 09-11-2007, 02:27 PM   #2
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CrawfordGene -- Welcome to the Forums! It sounds like you've done your research. Applying ever greater grey cells to the issue won't resolve your likes and dislikes about narrow vs. wide body, corner bed vs. 48" wide bed. Queens don't show up until you get up to 25' Safaris and those are cramped -- but a lot of trailer for an '02 Tundra. The best queens are fore-and-aft and start finally at the 27' length.

Nothing beats laying eyes on models. Dealers of course... You're going to want to be satisified with this for a long time and the best advice is to bring your tent, popup or whatever you have and attend a Forums rally -- it's great to both see and talk to active Airstream owners.
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Old 09-11-2007, 02:28 PM   #3
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Hi, You have alot of questions and I am not an expert in any of the areas except the area of two tall people in one small bed. Pete and I have have a 19' Bambi for six plus years and this is what we have found... It is a little too small. We have camped together for 30 plus years in a VW Westfalia, in tents, in SOBs and in this Bambi. We love it, but it is too much of a squeeze to fit us both comfortably into that full bed. It isn't really even a full because two corners are cut off. We have two tiny dogs that need to share it also. We ultimately ended up with me in the bed with one dog and Pete in the dinette bed with the other. We are going to be sizing up to a 25 footer soon and NOT the side sleeper model. On all the other more technical questions I can be no help.
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Old 09-11-2007, 03:23 PM   #4
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If I were seriously in the market for a new trailer, I would take a day trip to both Windish & Inter Mountain Coach and see as many as possible. Make it a weekend thing...200 miles is not that far ~ drive out Friday - spend all day Saturday "kicking tires", spend the night at the Broadmore in Colo Springs...then go home Sunday after brunch.

Who knows...you may end up seeing something in real life that isn't apparent in photos online. Personally, I would prefer to purchase from Inter Mountain Coach even though Windish may be a bit closer to you....they are smaller and more Airstream dependant.

Oh yeah, welcome to the forums from a fellow Coloradoan!

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Old 09-11-2007, 03:29 PM   #5
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Old 09-11-2007, 03:51 PM   #6
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We have a 2004 22' CCD and love it. There are four of us. It's easy to tow and short enough to get in some tight National Forest campsites while Boondocking. AS stopped making them for 2007 but there might be a few still on the dealer's lots. We love the decor and the wet bath (a great space saver, yet roomy). You can get creative with the 48" bed (ie: head to toe). The dinette can be used for sleeping, but get a Memory Foam topper because of the hump (the table top rests on the seats, not flush). Folding chair/loveseat for lounging inside and watching TV. We use the desk for our entertainment center (DC color TV with DVD player). Leave the desk chair at home and use space under desk for storage bins. Get hanging shelves and a hanging shoe rack for the wardrobe.
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Old 09-11-2007, 03:55 PM   #7
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The CCD has the bare metal walls with the dark gray laminate mill work and kitchen cabinets, wrap around front window and Classic style windows. It is the middle weight of Airstreams.

An alternative would be the Safari line. The SE models of Safari line have the bare metal walls with woodgrain laminate mill work and kitchen cabinets, wrap around front (and in some cases rear windows) and Classic style windows. This line is the lightest in the Airstream stable.

You can go to the Airstream, Inc :: Home website and compare floor plans. I'm sure you've been there and done that already. But you can get an idea of what will interest you in terms of floor plans. (We have a 30' Safari for the bunk beds (no longer manufactured) and love it.) Then, as has been recommended, go to a dealer's lot and scrutinize the ones that appeal to you. Be forewarned though, if it isn't a dealer that focuses on Airstreams, i.e. an sob dealer that has Airstreams as just another line, you probably will know more than the dealer does about Airstreams in general.

You are wise to keep your tow vehicle's maxes in mind when sizing your Airstream. Just remember that in most cases you will keep the Airstream longer than your tow vehicle so don't refuse a model just because of the tow vehicle you have today. You sound like you will tow your's allot and, in Colorado, you will have the opportunity to tow in mountains more often and steeper than most so tow vehicle and wear and tear is important. But most people tow their Airstreams a few times a year and it is parked most of the year.

Good luck with your decision and welcome to the wonderful world of Streamin'.
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Old 09-11-2007, 07:16 PM   #8
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What to buy?

Thanks for the information. We will be in Pueblo in a few weeks and will drive up to Colorado Springs to see how Airstreams feel in person. It's our nature to read up on anything expensive and these forums certainly are useful for lots of information. I keep looking over all the information the company has on their website and maybe the Safari 23 makes sense—we will be driving ourselves crazy over this for some time to come.
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Old 09-11-2007, 07:55 PM   #9
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Hi Crawfordgene and welcome to the party.

Couple of things to throw into the mix of decisions you will make.

1, Make sure you fit in the restroom.

2, Your trailer will last longer than your truck so if you need a larger trailer go ahead and get a larger truck.

Good luck!
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Old 09-11-2007, 08:20 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CrawfordGene

what do I buy?

We've never had an RV.

We have a 2002 Tundra with the V8. It's rated at about 7,000 lbs. for towing and tongue weight of around 1,000.

We'd like to find a model with a queen bed, lots of water and 2 batteries, even a sofa, dry bath, but they all weigh too much...
hi crawfordgene and welcome to the forums...

while the 'styling' may not appeal 2u...

the classic line is really designed for most of your criteria...

LOTS of water, big bed, sofa, dry bath and so on...

a 25 ft unit 10-12 years used will cost and weigh less than the new ones...

and cost so much less that IF you don't like rv'n the lesson is less expensive.

with a little cosmetic redo these 10 year old units can be very fresh and personalized.

also remember that towing figure/tongue for the tundra is WITHOUT people, gear and so on IN the truck...

it's not enough truck for any modern 25 footer...

i agree with everyone who suggests...

get inside as many units as possible, new or used.

sit, lay, squat, lounge, play cook and otherwise try the space.

and make a list of absolute requirements, needs and wants...

but use a pencil.

cheers
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Old 09-11-2007, 08:20 PM   #11
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Welcome to the Forums. We're glad to have you with us.

Airstreams are great. We were also new to RVing. We bought our Lucy in June, 2006. We have spent 162 nights in her since. We absolutely love it. Lucy is a 25FB. The plan works great. We have spent 42 consecutive days in her and did not asault each other. The queen bed is better than our bed at home.
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Old 09-11-2007, 08:57 PM   #12
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22' for us

The 22' CCD is the perfect layout for us ... small enough to tow comfortably with our Titan, lots of windows for views and air circulation, plenty of storage space, adequate counter space in the galley and floor space for the dogs. You'll find the 22' bed length is functionally longer than the mattress, there is a short hamper on the road side and an open storage area on the curbside that give a bit more space. For us, a walk-around bed would be wasted space, for others it is of prime importance. The same goes for the wet bath vs. a dry bath.
It would be nice to have lounge seating during the day, and we are considering modifications to convert the bed to a couch/bed (gaucho) combo. Don't have it figured out yet, but it seems possible. I think that linens could be selected to keep the bed making from becoming a chore.

A new 22' will be really hard to find as they didn't seem to make many in 2007. Used units are occasionally available. Hope you can see the 20' Safari (love the galley) and the 23' Signature at your dealerships. Touring them will give you a good feel for the space and decor options.

Good luck,
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Old 09-11-2007, 09:31 PM   #13
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If you're in far western Colorado, I'd recommend the Dealer in SLC, not Denver. Have heard good reports on the COS dealer, but no first hand knowledge.
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Old 09-11-2007, 11:05 PM   #14
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I agree with prior posters... the diagrams and pictures will NOT tell you how a particular Airstream will fit you and your lifestyle. I chose a 22 CCD as my first airstream after finding out that the wet bath is very spacious (and easy to hose down and clean). As a fulltimer I finally decided I wanted more space and moved up to a 25FB SE.

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