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Old 07-07-2010, 07:49 PM   #43
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Money Money Money!

Here's a wild idea. Find a 34 "Toy Hauler" - I think I saw the floorplan and layout on www.airstream.com. It's basically a 25 FB SUPER CCD with a "garage" room in the back. I saw a used one at Bates RV in Florida back in February. Telling you about this is like being the cub reporter who blurted out, "Other than that Mrs. Lincoln, how did you enjoy the play?"

It's WAY too long - you'd think, but look, it's got a "man cave" that you can literally lock the kid out of - and even a separate exit.

----------

2nd wild Idea. IF you get a USED 25 or 27, you can afford to buy a new tow vehicle. ARTSTREAM runs his business from his Airstream - but he tows with a substantial BOX VAN. His box van stores his inventory and supplies. It could just as easily be your windowless office!

----------

If you're considering buying a NEW 25 FB CCD - then "settling" for a nice used one like the one in Texas will save you $20K and you could use that money to buy an almost new box van or 1 ton delivery van as your tow vehicle. It's a buyers market on those.

-----------

Call your local KOA and see if they have a rental Airstream. They are all 25 FB's from what I've heard. Spend a weekend there - a great test drive for living in one!

Also go look at the upcoming Rallies on this forum. Owners generally love to show off their Airstreams - customized or factory original. It's a fantastic way to check out how fantasy meshes with reality. There are also two "Airstream only" campgrounds scattered around the country - two in Texas that I know of. I've camped in three different ones myself, and lo... there are always units for sale that don't seem to show up on the internet! Again, nothing beats meeting other owners and having them show you around.

-------

Both 2Air and I have been fulltiming for 5 years now. I've run into him at Alumapalooza and at a Can Opener rally. His knowledge is encyclopedic. Don't take his enthusiasm as criticism. He's trying to save you some serious money. My first stream was a 2005 22 CCD - 2 years and 1 month later I bought the 25 FB and then Airstream unveiled the 27FB a couple of months later. I bought BOTH new. Could have saved 20K had I been more patient and waited to find the right gently used unit. Or had been willing to drive 1000 miles to pick it up. Of course I now realize if you're not willing to drive 1000 miles, why do you want an Airstream? D'oh!

Sooner or later I will pop on a 27 FB, and IF I win a lottery it might even be a new one... otherwise I'll stay with what I have til the right one comes along. Oh, and other than being a "rivette" female I am your stereotype of an Airstream owner; 62 with no children. I love my nephews and niece and their children... but I feel no obligation to leave them an inheritance! I've been surprised at how many widows and divorced women are fulltiming alone. Another legend is that RVing is a "whites only" activity. That might have been true 20 years ago, but while the preception lingers the facts show it simply isn't so.

RV parks have been around for many years... Most started out with very small spaces, but over time the size of RV's grew into those super MOHO's and the "bigger is better" fifth wheels. Campgrounds have evolved to match the market. Most places that were primitive only will now take a Prevost. If you think your house is ecologically irresponsible - look at the inside of a Prevost.

I went to the "Wilds of Ohio" rally last summer - it's one of those at "turn onto the winding one lane dirt road from the gravel road" places. It's the only place I've ever been where I drove up to the field thinking "I sure am glad I don't have a 34' tri-axle!"

Aluminitis - we've all got it bad. Paula
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Old 07-07-2010, 07:55 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by 2airishuman View Post
didn't include that link since 01's unit is a safari/flying cloud, not an ccd/international and the assembly bits are slightly different as are the locations.
Interesting, didn't know that.


Worksology, I'm about your age, and have been fulltiming in the trailer in the link above since January of this year--alone. I think it is possible to do it with a child and a wife, but I would strongly consider the 27FB just for the extra storage space. I don't have a lot of clothes, but both hanging closets are full, all wardrobe drawers are full, etc. When it comes to the paltry pantry, its packed to the gills with food, and again, its just me--though I do like to cook, so I may have more food than the normal family, who knows? If my fiance joined me, there would be no place to put her things. I have an older F250 diesel to pull with and I've got a toolbox in it just to store all my tools, fluids and a few things for the Airstream I don't use very much. I wouldn't pull with anything less than a 3/4 ton diesel pickup, Chevy Subdivision, Ford Excretion, etc. with a ProPride or Hensley hitch. That combination is towing nirvana, anything less is just meh.

Good luck in your continuing search, you are going to enjoy the ride I think

On edit, Paula brings up a good idea with the PanAmerica Toy hauler. I'm keeping my eyes open hoping I can find one for less than $50 large. If I do, I may be going to that just for the garage/man cave. For that though, you WILL NEED at least a 3/4 ton pickup for the massive tongue weight alone, never mind the weight of the entire unit.
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Old 07-07-2010, 08:34 PM   #45
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Toy Hauler for sale

2009 Airstream PanAmerican - Airstream Trailer Classifieds - Used Airstreams For Sale

Interior photos

http://www.colonialairstream.com/air...rica/index.htm
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Old 07-07-2010, 10:42 PM   #46
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Interesting, didn't know that...
wait, u didn't know your unit is a safari/flying cloud?

just kidding.

these 2 25s (international/safari) appear to have the same floor plan

so perhaps all the hidden guts are exactly the same and in exactly the same locations...

but don't count on it.
________

a family of 3-4 FULL TIMING in a 25 can certainly work, but it wouldn't be easy...

and removing the only real bed makes it all the more of a challenge.

the REQUIREMENT to convert a dinette AND sofa into bedding every single night...

would get really old really fast.

but then again sitting to a take a hand held shower with 2-5 gallons of water might too.

or the need to grocery shop every 2-3 days or put AWAY stuff, just to get out OTHER stuff...

and where do the kids go when they are tired, cranky, need a nap or a 'time out' or are sick...

and so on.

it just seems that for FULL TIMING a dedicated sleeping area

is right up there with a functional galley and large shower in terms of absolutes.

now add the requirement to BE PRODUCTIVE in that same space,

shared with 2-3 other folks who are NOT at work...

it gets more and more challenging which each consideration.

so perhaps the best approach is simply to buy something and JUMP in and go for it...

most regrets are about NOT trying whatever it is we wanna try, right?
_________

no doubt you've discovered the bunk house model,

basically the only modern stream produced with 2 real sleeping spaces....

and a full kitchen, dinette and bathroom.

while the walls aren't SHINY these are sure great units for family life.

keep at it works' no one is trying to dash your desire for adventurous living.

cheers
2air'
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Old 07-09-2010, 01:07 PM   #47
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You guys crack me up. The PanAmerica is a hilarious suggestion. Don't get me wrong: the garage would be loads of fun to customize, and it certainly would provide the flexibility to do all of the things I've said are important to us, but it's definitely an absurd suggestion for us.

In 2003, I spent 3 months circumnavigating the US (with a few detours into Canada: Montreal, Banff, Jasper, Victoria) in my VW Passat. I spent most nights camping in National & State Park primitive, tent-only campsites, but did a lot of "boondocking" too, sleeping in the trunk of my car. As recently as last fall, my wife & boy (just a wee infant then) did a lot of tent-camping, and indeed, sleeping in the back of our Jeep Commander with the 2nd and 3rd row seats folded down. My only real point is that we're coming at this from the perspective of primitive campers, so any sized Airstream will provide comfort like we've never known (okay, okay, full-timing is different than the occasional vacation!). It's like Listerine: it's painful, but worth it.

We're not much closer than we were a few days ago, but I have a few questions about the logistics of buying a used trailer from a private seller. I've found and read dozens of posts on here about taking delivery from a dealer, and of course, a lot of the advice applies (as it would to any expensive purchase). Basically: know damn well what you're buying before you sign or pay for anything. But I'm particularly curious whether there are any special things we should look out for, especially when buying from a private seller??

I'm also curious about the legal arrangements we'll need to make ahead of time. Will I need to have insurance arranged? What about tags & registration? My assumption is that it's the same as buying a car—we need to have insurance to drive it home, but have 30 days to finalize registration. Is that true?

I guess I had hoped we could wait to get our mail-forwarding address in SD until JUST before we were ready to depart KS (still 2 or 3 months away, depending on my job and how easily we sell our house). But if insurance and registration have to happen before/immediately after taking possession, looks like I might as well get that going, huh?

My plan is to borrow my father's F350 diesel to pick up the trailer, and then haul it straight back to his workshop, where I'll store it until I have time to make all of our planned modifications. Since that's still 2 or 3 months away, I'd hate to have to pay for the mail forwarding service, months of vehicle registration and insurance, etc, just to have it sitting in storage. Any advice, there, or related threads for me to look at?

Cheers, gang.

Josh
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Old 07-09-2010, 02:10 PM   #48
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>> But if insurance and registration have to happen before/immediately after taking possession, looks like I might as well get that going, huh?

I have a vintage Airstream, lived in Ohio at the time of purchase from private owner in Michigan, moved to Indiana. My experience was first, the title. Then, registration and tag.

Maybe insurance for newer model will be different. For vintage (1968), a phone call to my auto insurance company before I left the Menards lot in Michigan, with the paper title in my hot little hand, towing the Trade Wind home extended the tow vehicle policy to the trailer for 30 days. Then, I had to take the whole package over to the insurance office and let them photograph it and so forth. Registration, tag, title transfer were swiftly done.

I've found with both my 88 truck and my 68 Airstream, I've been able to get liability and other basics only, no replacement value. I recommend checking the forums for more info on these concerns. You get lots of opinions, but you need the facts.

As for my loved ones, I try to keep the medical and life insurance up to date. Hard to do when you're unemployed ... but, other than that, it's the American way, I suppose.

Another company eventually insured the trailer when I found the forums and learned more about it -- Foremost -- worked out best for me in Ohio. In Indiana, I'm back to the extended auto policy. I guess state to state might differ. Hmm. What will that mean for full-timer? Would you have a "home base" state to use for such things? Maybe you said SD?

I'm following your thread, thinking about my own hopes to full-time for a while ... someday.

Keep the shiny side up!

Anne
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Old 07-09-2010, 02:34 PM   #49
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>What will that mean for full-timer? Would you have a "home base" state to use for such things? Maybe you said SD?
Thanks Anne!

Yeah, everything about us is in Kansas right now. We're both born & raised Kansans. We own a house here, I work here, we have insurance and drivers licenses and vehicle registrations here, we vote here, etc.

Our plan is to establish domicile in South Dakota, for all the reasons folks choose South Dakota for that purpose. That starts with signing up with a mail forwarding service so we have an address to use on other legal filings, like our vehicle registrations.

My concern is that I don't want to do that sooner-than-necessary. I'd like to wait until late-August/September, closer to when we hope to depart, just to save a bit of money. But if that's ridiculous, I'm fine with starting that sooner. The mail forwarding address is only $10 or so per month. Vehicle registration and insurance is likely CHEAPER there than in Kansas, so that might actually COVER the cost of the mail forwarding address itself.

But my real question is whether I HAVE TO do that stuff before I take possession of a used trailer, when I'm going to haul it home (2 or 3 days max) and then stick it in storage for a couple months? What happens if the 30 days registration/insurance bubble lapses? Will I have trouble registering/insuring it in SD when I finally get around to it?

I guess the first thing is to talk to my current insurance provider (Progressive) to see if they'll extend liability/collision to the trailer when I haul it home. (Except, if I'm borrowing my dad's truck, perhaps it is HIS insurance I need to look into!?) Argh!!!
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Old 07-09-2010, 04:14 PM   #50
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I was going to offer some advice but seems like you have your mind made up. I will say this, we full time in a 25' Classic and it's just big enough for the two of us. I wouldn't want to full time in the 25 or 27' FB layout. If you get rid of the bedroom you're going to feel like your living in a closet but maybe thats enough space for you..Rich Luhr has full timed and worked from the road and he could probably offer some valuable insights.
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Old 07-09-2010, 04:24 PM   #51
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I was going to offer some advice but seems like you have your mind made up.
Still plenty of time for me to change my mind. Again, and again. I've been doing it all over the place since starting this thread! I'd love to hear whatever advice you, or anyone else, have to give. I probably sound like more of a mind-maker-upper than I really am.

I appreciate your insight on the 25'. We're definitely leaning towards the 27' as an effect of this thread (and after reading a variety of other related threads on Airforums). We're making plans to see them in person again before making up our minds for good, but I'm pretty confident we won't be going longer than 27'.

We're also not planning on "getting rid of the bedroom". It may have come across that way, but our goal is more to "extend the utility of the bedroom." Our success on that front is TBD, but it's being met with sufficient levels of skepticism around here. Time will tell.

Thanks again. Josh
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Old 07-09-2010, 05:22 PM   #52
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-a TAG b4 towing it home depends on where the purchase is made.

some states are strict on this and some buyers FUDGE it.

-insurance again, depends on carrier and policy also statebystate.

liability while towing may be automatic for 30 days, but COMP may not, again statebystate.

-the ISSUES of buying/inspecting/towing it home,

-what to TAKE/bring to the inspection/purchase/maiden tow,

-how to PAY 4 it, prepare it for the 1 way trip home, transfer title and SO ON...

from a PRIVATE seller...

are extremely well covered in several threads. extremely well covered.

there are lists of items, caveats, first hand reports and ALL the other basics.
_________

consider hanging out on the escapees website where full timing is COMPLETELY covered, in careful detail.

might also wanna buy a few BOOKS on this,

there are several good books on the process of full timing, working/travel, selling the house, budgets and so on...

there is also an rvn book for dummies and an idiots guide to rvn...

both are useful (no i am not suggesting u r an idiot or dummy) and can help DEFINE a long list of issues...

that might otherwise be UNknown to the novice.
_________

the RULES and PROCESS for establishing residence in s.d have CHANGED recently.

mail forwarding is very very simple and the escapees have a great service for this (many cool features)

registration MAY be cheaper in s.d. and so may some property taxes...

but you really should learn about and understand the IMPLICATIONS related to shifting residency (domicile if you prefer)

for example health insurance?

have u got it? do you wanna keep it? are you gonna go without it for wife and kiddo too?

voting/credit and other issues related to 'residence' are given away or very hard to KEEP for the rv'er without a real address...

and yes the gov, credit folks, big business and others that try RUNNING our lives...

KNOW about the rv'ers and post office/drop boxes and other things RETIRED OLD PEOPLE use for mobile life.
__________

given the DEFINED SHORT duration of your proposal, consider KEEPING everything in ks...

mail forwarding can still happen (several approaches) and you could use a parent/siblings address for residence.

without giving up licenses, insurance, traditional roots and so on.
_________

get the books, read at the escapees, find the relevant threads HERE...

and don't assume ANY of these issues are simple or logically solved.

remember when cosmo kramer tried to cancel ALL mail and cut ties with the postal service...

___________

NOT ditching the bed entirely is a much better notion.

a gaucho, murphy like bed, rolled futon, or FOLDING sofa bed are all good options...

the dinette/L sofa is really HORRIBLE for sleeping, even without the issue of making it.

otoh the sofa/bed in the CLASSICS is much much much more comfortable for sleeping (and longer than the rv queens)

oh yeah the classic can be tweaked to a wenge ish ness but without shiny walls...

cheers
2air'
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Old 07-09-2010, 06:03 PM   #53
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the dinette/L sofa is really HORRIBLE for sleeping, even without the issue of making it.


oh yeah the classic can be tweaked to a wenge ish ness but without shiny walls...

cheers
2air'
I'm gonna have to disagree on this. I've slept on it for weeks at a time when my Dad was with me. It's pretty comfy in my opinion.

And quit hatin' on the bare aluminum walls. They are where its at.
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Old 07-09-2010, 06:18 PM   #54
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well wide fat guys don't like sleeping on it...

no hate here for buck nekked cold hard hot silver walls...

reminds me too much of the wacky MIRRORs at the carnival (does my a/s make me look fat?)

the galley in my unit has the UNfinished alumawall... ((gotta go wipe off the spaghetti sauce later))

having spent many nights in tankard like settings, with reverb and reflected heat..

i now wanna be softly snugged in a gently shaded womb of velour ...



cheers
2air'
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Old 07-09-2010, 06:24 PM   #55
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Thats one of the main reasons (aside from aesthetic) that I love the bare aluminum walls. Easy cleanup. I have no idea how you clean the white mouse fur walls of a Classic. Sure they are cold in the winter and may not be the best for premium sound systems, but I can deal with that. I can be a messy dude when I'm cookin' or workin' or whatever, and I'd trash those white walls in a heartbeat I'm afraid
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Old 07-09-2010, 06:55 PM   #56
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Thanks for the mental picture!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2airishuman View Post
well wide fat guys don't like sleeping on it...

no hate here for buck nekked cold hard hot silver walls...

reminds me too much of the wacky MIRRORs at the carnival (does my a/s make me look fat?)

the galley in my unit has the UNfinished alumawall... ((gotta go wipe off the spaghetti sauce later))

having spent many nights in tankard like settings, with reverb and reflected heat..

i now wanna be softly snugged in a gently shaded womb of velour ...



cheers
2air'
And if you're going to sleep noood - then don't leave the curtains open or you could roll up against a window and create the dreaded "Pressed Ham Under Glass MOON"

Remind me to gift you with a sleep shirt next time we run into each other!
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