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Old 09-09-2010, 07:52 AM   #1
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25-footer vs 30/31 footer fultime on the road

Ok... we are on the road fultime and it is suiting both of us and the dogs greatTo remain on the road for an extended period of time we have been discussing the benefits of trading in/selling the 25 ft Safari for a
30/31 unit...Classic or other as we may find....Paula and the other P's of course want the longer unit as a matter of comfort and , i guess other factors...I am tied to the nimbleness of my 25 footer and I am in love with my truck...which will not be adequate for the larger unit....

how much less nimble will the larger unit be?????

with a diesel GMC 2500HD with Allison trans i will most likely not notice the difference...

In our travels so far, where we have been ,and base that on where we will likely go I don't think the extra 6 feet will be a problem....

any thoughts?

thanks
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Old 09-09-2010, 09:17 AM   #2
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Having owned a Tradewind 25ft, and looked at several 29, 31 and 34 ft Airstreams, I think there's something that changes around the 27ft mark that suddenly moves things from pure utility use of space, to a bit of nice room to actually spread out. My next airstream will be 29 or 31 ft - I think 34 ft is just a little too much to handle.
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Old 09-09-2010, 09:26 AM   #3
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I think you have to decide if 5 more feet is worth another 10-20 thousand dollars. I owned a 29' Sovereign and fulltime in a 25' Classic. I wouldn't move to a 30' even if it were an even trade. Which of course it wouldn't be.
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Old 09-09-2010, 10:50 AM   #4
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I say go to 30' for Paula.....the transition's no big deal, and you'll both be happier. Dave Park (post #2) makes an excellent point.
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Old 09-09-2010, 11:49 AM   #5
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I'd Say Do it!

First of all, we do not full time.

We upgraded from a 21 foot SOB to a 31 foot Airstream last year.

The comfort of the extra room, really makes the trailer a much more pleasurable experience for us. We are the same number, but substitute two cats for your two dogs.

I was quite apprehensive about maneuvering the longer trailer, but now that we have over 5000 miles under our belt, I am very comfortable. Obviously I don't turn around in the same places etc, but I am accustomed to the new minimums, so it's no problem.

Regards,

Ken
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Old 09-09-2010, 11:58 AM   #6
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What suits YOU is what is right for you. I would like the 27 FB for the closet space, pantry space and single Lobster bowl sink. Those who love two sinks - fine. The bigger, deeper one can handle a stew pot, or an electric skillet - and it forces you to dry and put away your dishes making the whole counter look more spacious.

If you are married SWMBO trumps everything.

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Old 09-09-2010, 03:40 PM   #7
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how much less nimble will the larger unit be?????


A 34' is harder to back. (I know you said 31'). Fuel stops are different. That's about it. I recommend you measure your total length, bumper-to-bumper, when hitched to the current rig. My 34' Silver Streak, behind my 4-door Dodge longbed (and Hensley) came to 63'. Backing is just practice, and knowing where to make the cuts is the hardest part (as you already know). They're great on the highway. So, nimble it may not be, but the driver will whip that problem over time.

That said, going all the way up in size is worth the trouble especially with a rearmost bedroom. The privacy afforded by two "living areas" is priceless when someone is ill, or working, or one is stuck inside by the worst weather. Granted some 34's don't utilize space very well, so consider making changes that suit you best if you take this on as a mental exercise. I know I like the front lounge layout with sofa and loveseat adjoined by a corner table as best.

On some early 1980's AVION 34's with rear bedroom I have noticed that another framework for a woven-wood folding door was installed across the front lounge. So think of the bigger trailers as being able to be sub-divided internally: (from the rear) bedroom [with door], then bath (on AVION 34W models this is bath/shower one side of aisle, and toilet/sink/storage on the other) [second door] then the kitchen/dinette and entrance door; then yet a third door closing off the front lounge with sleeper sofa. One can sleep two couple in such an arrangement, obviously, but don't forget the advantage of privacy afforded by that closed lounge on an early morning, etc, where the desire for sustained privacy is better than that afforded by drapes/blinds. (As well as HVAC loads lessened; dogs allowed only in kitchen at night, etc).

And, a bigger bathroom (if such is the case) is ALWAYS better-than-you-thought-it-would-be.

Good luck.

.
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Old 09-09-2010, 04:35 PM   #8
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25 vs 30 footer

We are not fulltimers but have been trailering for over 30 years. Our 30 foot Classic is the largest of the 5 trailers that we have had over the years. We have found the comfort, space and the layout the best compared to all those trailers that we have had before. Experience has taught us that it is especially nice to have the extra space for long trips and for those " rainy" days. Pulling the 30 footer is not a problem.
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Old 09-09-2010, 05:07 PM   #9
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nimbleness???

I guess what i refer to in that word is the ability to go most anywhere and park... in a national park or forrest...on the beach,,...off the road adventures... and with my 4 wheel steering be able to turn on a dime most anywhere....I would give that up with a 30/31 no question.....but the comfort for the woman and the dogs is most important...for my sake.....

a 34 footer is just out of the question for me, unless i was not going to be on the road full time...
.We have only done this 6 months and we are on the road constantly...moving every two to three days and this will be our plan for the next two years or so,...... So when we get back to Camper Clinic in Buda and she settles in a 30/31 unit...a Classic i suppose...i will have to find a friendly banker
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Old 09-10-2010, 08:00 AM   #10
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had a 28 safari that i traded for the 31 classic four years ago.the large hall closet and the front area with the extra length make all the difference for dw.not a problem towing at all.i think this trailer is the perfect size for two and can be used for more when friends and family come along.we dont fulltime,but someday i would like to travel three months at a time using home base for family holidays.dw is satisfied with this trailer for extended stays.i do have a hensley and diesel tow vehicle which makes everything much more pleasurable.
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Old 09-10-2010, 09:07 AM   #11
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kingfisher, when we junped in and bought our first one-'97 30' excella 1000 widebody, we had nothing to compare to. since then i have acquired some other sizes and when all is said and done- we like the 30 footer. the only thing i dont like is the shower-i'm a big guy and it is a little cramped. all else being said manueverability is not bad - you just have to watch what you are doing, take it slow, and have a lookout. it all works out
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Old 09-10-2010, 09:38 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kingfisher24 View Post
I guess what i refer to in that word is the ability to go most anywhere and park... in a national park or forrest...on the beach,,...off the road adventures... and with my 4 wheel steering be able to turn on a dime most anywhere....I would give that up with a 30/31 no question.....but the comfort for the woman and the dogs is most important...for my sake.....

a 34 footer is just out of the question for me, unless i was not going to be on the road full time...
.We have only done this 6 months and we are on the road constantly...moving every two to three days and this will be our plan for the next two years or so,...... So when we get back to Camper Clinic in Buda and she settles in a 30/31 unit...a Classic i suppose...i will have to find a friendly banker
Full timing sucessfully with the wife would require a 30'+ in my opinion.
A well located support facility with awning, barn, for repairs and seasonal storage, would be a consideration to keep yourself grounded.
I like the nimble idea too, flexability is a state of mind.
Keeping the spouse happy, just common sense.
Shop around, going broke is too easy in these tough times.
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Old 09-10-2010, 11:58 AM   #13
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Towing my 30' I have never encountered a situation where being 5' shorter would have solved anything important.

With a 30' I cannot fit in 2 parking spaces at a supermarket or Wal-mart, and I probably could with a 25', I guess. I just park well away from the entrance across 5 or 6 spaces, and it works out OK.
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Old 09-10-2010, 12:04 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kingfisher24 View Post
I guess what i refer to in that word is the ability to go most anywhere and park... in a national park or forrest...on the beach,,...off the road adventures... and with my 4 wheel steering be able to turn on a dime most anywhere....I would give that up with a 30/31 no question.....but the comfort for the woman and the dogs is most important...for my sake.....

a 34 footer is just out of the question for me, unless i was not going to be on the road full time...
.We have only done this 6 months and we are on the road constantly...moving every two to three days and this will be our plan for the next two years or so,...... So when we get back to Camper Clinic in Buda and she settles in a 30/31 unit...a Classic i suppose...i will have to find a friendly banker
Regarding the Buda, Texas, Camper Clinic; be VERY, VERY careful in dealing with them! I live in Houston and have a 31 CL for which I had warranty work done there (A/S Jackson Center directed me there) on my A/C unit (it was R&R’d) back in 2002. I sat in their entry room for several hours and overheard their sales people, talking between one another, MALIGN and BELITTLE their Customers. Having been in Sales & Marketing for 28 years with Texaco it really told me EVERYTHING about their management.

Additionally, they did a VERY poor job of the A/C R&R and I had to return the next morning (spent night in Buda) and “DEAL” with their service dept. to R&R it again to seal the condensate leak on my kitchen wood floor due to their poor workmanship. Later when I got back to Houston and climbed up on the top of the A/S I found that they had dragged the A/C unit across the top of the A/S and scratched through the white paint in many areas. VERY, VERY poor workmanship AND attitude toward their Customers!

Maybe management has changed over the last 6 or 7 years, hopefully so, but I will NEVER darken their door again (I reported my experience to A/S Jackson Center).

Concerning the two axle 31 foot length, I find it ideal. It is extremely easy to maneuver with my X5 (I also have a 12 foot utility trailer for reference). When at home I jackknife it up (the X5’s 4 W/D is necessary) into my back yard, making a full 180 degree turn from the street to maneuver it into a 10 foot wide “slip” between two wings of my home. I would not be able to maneuver a 34 foot 3 axle into the “slip”. See photo below.

My A/S is a twin bed unit with the bath/toilet on the street side. This allows for closure of the bedroom sliding door, bathroom/toilet sliding door and the accordion sliding door at the hall/kitchen to segregate the bedroom, bathroom and hall from the kitchen and front room.

Additionally, with the two folding tables in front of the couch and folding Zip Dee chairs I saw no reason for the dinette option. Without the dinette I opted for the convection microwave and credenza in front of the refrigerator. With the convection microwave I reasoned I didn’t need an oven so went with just the cook top which allows for more drawer storage in the kitchen. It has all worked out very well and I have no regrets.

Also, get a Hensley hitch, you won't regret it!
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