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Old 10-20-2008, 09:33 PM   #1
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Exclamation Stupid Question

this may challenge the old saying , "no such thing as a stupid question"
but i was wondering if you legally can tow an airstream with people inside it? are there safety hazzards where this wouldn't be a good idea?
would love any imput on the subject. another stupid question. is there any special wiring required to tow an airstream or will any trailer hitch wiring setup work properly? i thought i have read about brakes on trailers and didn't know how they engage. again, i apologize for being stupid in this area
thanks

and no, i don't own a trailer yet so i am not a "safety hazzard" out there on the road not knowing the answers to these queestions in case anyone was wondering
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Old 10-20-2008, 09:37 PM   #2
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The only stupid question is the one not asked.
First, it is not a good idea to haul people, or pets, in any travel trailer, though it is still legal in some states. Check local statutes to see if your state is one of them.
Second, any 7-flat pin plug should work with your Airstream, provided it has been updated to industry standard. You will need a brake controller in order to operate your trailer brakes, most modern trucks and SUV's have a connector that just plugs in to a pigtail, and connects the controller.
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Old 10-21-2008, 12:30 AM   #3
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Stupid question? Nope you'll have to try harder next time.

In California people in a trailer going down the road is illegal. Each State will have it's own law on this.
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Old 10-21-2008, 02:27 AM   #4
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Stupid question? Nope you'll have to try harder next time.

In California people in a trailer going down the road is illegal. Each State will have it's own law on this.
Hi, I know this is a twist on your question, but a "fifth wheel" is also a trailer [very few made by Airstream] and passengers can ride in one if there is a way to communicate with the driver such as a two way radio. As for a travel trailer, the answer is no.
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Old 10-21-2008, 08:23 AM   #5
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I remember researching this about 4 years ago and the answer I found agrees with one of the posts above. If I remember correctly, having passengers in the trailer is legal in about 1/3 of the states. My research was for a friend whose wife had a medical condition which precluded her sitting up for more than an hour or so at a time. He was about to retire and wanted to know his options for traveling!

http://www.americanrvrentals.com/passengers.htm
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Old 10-21-2008, 08:54 AM   #6
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Legal or not, it's not a good idea to ride in a moving travel trailer. I would not do it.

An Airstream is wired to the tow vehicle with a standard 7 contact plug. The outlet for this type of plug is found on many SUVs and most pick ups. You will also need a trailer brake controller installed in the tow vehicle.

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Old 10-21-2008, 09:05 AM   #7
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Legal is not the question. Cleaning up after the passengers get SEA SICK is.

Yes about 1/3 of the states will allow it but before you ask the kids to do it have someone drive you down the road and you will change you mind.

Jersey says OK if the trailer has Safety Glass.
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Old 10-21-2008, 09:10 AM   #8
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As Bob pointed you in the right direction, it is not legal in many states. As others have said and I have posted else where here in the forum; you do NOT want to be in your AS while towing. You would be shocked at what goes on inside your trailer during a tow. Now just for giggles and to prove a point, mount a video camera VERY securly in the back of your AS pointing forward, hang a tennis ball from a string from the ceiling and hit the road. You will be shocked at what goes on. You will be very glad your own an AS and have a good understanding of how most other TT don't last so long.
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Old 10-21-2008, 10:02 AM   #9
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Please understand, I'm not being argumentative, but I have tested driving down the road with someone in the trailer. First, the situation and reasoning. I asked my wife to ride in the trailer for a few miles so she could monitor what the trailer was actually doing! I wanted her to check for out of balance tires, for vibrations, rattles, rough ride from the hitch bars, and for unusual movements which might suggest problems. I also wanted her to check to see how "fumey" it would be if we were to allow our traveling cats to stay back there in lieu of being in the tow vehicle where they fussed at each other constantly. I chose a very remote road in Arizona with virtually no traffic. We had walkie-talkies and I would communicate with her about the ride and conditions. My wife put the cats in the trailer and climbed in with some apprehension.
Over a distance of about 15 miles, we determined the following:
a. the ride was surprisingly serene and not at all "fumey"!
b. cabinet doors squeaked constantly, but not destructively. It was about the same as my father-in-law's Winnebago.
c. it was winter and it got cold fairly quickly!
d. the tires contributed a fair amount of road noise but were fairly well balanced and the tire pressure I was using didn't contribute to a stiff harsh ride.
e. the windows didn't leak as much air as expected, but nearly all the vents and
the door leaked more than expected! (I later replaced the door gasket)
f. items stored in the oven made rattling noises.
g. it was fairly easy to ride comfortably setting in one of our easy chairs.
My wife was surprised at how comfortable the ride actually was!
h. the cats readily adapted to it. They had more "personal space" and they tended to seek out the places where they normally napped and then curled up and went to sleep!

Since then, we've traveled more than 75,000 miles, always with the cats in the trailer but never the wife! When we put on new tires and Centramatic balancers, we repeated the experiment for a couple miles to verify the combination actually worked, which it did. Our other findings were roughly the same as before.

If you want to know for sure, give it a try!
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Old 10-21-2008, 10:29 AM   #10
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Of course with a motorhome you are always riding in the trailer. We hear all the noises previously mentioned as well as the wind noise. My wife moves around on the road but I have to warn her when making any abrupt turns or she has a hard time standing.

She has tried taking a nap in the rear bed room, but on a bumpy road she says she spends more time air borne than on the bed itself. She usually takes naps on the couch right behind the drivers seat.
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Old 10-21-2008, 02:28 PM   #11
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Cooperhawk pretty much summed up our experiences with our 310 Classic motorhome. Kinda like walking down the isle of an airplane in flight during rough weather.

Sleeping on the couch behind the driver isn't bad but laying on the bed in back can be a pretty interesting experience!

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Old 10-21-2008, 02:40 PM   #12
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Quote:
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Sleeping on the couch behind the driver isn't bad but laying on the bed in back can be a pretty interesting experience!

Brad
Brad, the best solution to that is to run a hammock across.
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Old 10-21-2008, 02:54 PM   #13
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Last year while in Oregon our TV blew the radiator while on I084 near Hood River. We had Good Sam Emergency Roadside get a tow truck out from Hood River. They couldn't take both the TV and trailer and sent another truck out to bring the trailer in to the repair shop (7 miles). Lou and I rode in the trailer for those 7 miles. I will agree with Bob Thompson it is interesting with the things in the oven rattling and the road noise. We didn't have any problems with the window and vents leaking. This experience is not one I would want to have more than once.
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Old 10-21-2008, 04:06 PM   #14
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It only takes a short time and you find and eliminate all those rattles. I drive and my wife tracks them down one at a time. NO more rattles.
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