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Old 12-07-2011, 10:00 AM   #43
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FAN, how cold does winter get there where you are in BC?
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Old 12-08-2011, 12:09 AM   #44
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FAN, how cold does winter get there where you are in BC?
Aage, we do not have the prolonged deep-freeze like Alberta and points eastward. We get a lot of rain from October to March/April. It snowed a couple of weeks ago, which is rare for November. Snow never lasts long here; it is usually washed away by the reappearance of rain.

Tonight it is relatively mild. 1C or 38F, but there is a lot of dampness in the air - feels colder.

Occasionally, an Arctic front will roll in. I remember one February where we had two weeks where the temp. was below 1C. That was extremely rare.

We usually get through winter with the daily temp. hovering around 1C., like it is today. I have been sleeping in the Airstream with only an electric heater in the bedroom and am very comfortable. If I get an electric mattress pad, I may even be able to get through the night w/o the electric heater...or turning it down to a lower setting. I find the dampness to be the most uncomfortable thing about our winters.

I have cut and pasted Wiki....
hope that helps.

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada has a moderate oceanic climate (Koppen climate classification Cfb) with summer months that are typically dry, often resulting in moderate drought conditions, usually in July and August. In contrast, the rest of the year is rainy, especially between October and March.

Like the rest of coastal British Columbia, the city is tempered by the warm Japan Current[citation needed] and is also sheltered by the mountains of Vancouver Island, to the west. These influences contribute to making Vancouver the second warmest (after Victoria) of Canada's major cities overall, despite the fact summers are cooler than most other major cities.[1]

Average max. and min. temperatures in FPrecipitation totals in inches
The climatology of Vancouver applies to the entire Greater Vancouver region and not just to the City of Vancouver itself. While Vancouver's coastal location serves to moderate its temperatures, sea breezes and mountainous terrain make Greater Vancouver a region of microclimates, with local variations in weather sometimes being more exaggerated than those experienced in other coastal areas.
Predicting precipitation in the Greater Vancouver area is particularly complex. It is a general rule of thumb that for every rise of 100 metres in elevation, there is an additional 100 millimetres (1.2 in per 100 ft) of precipitation, so places such as North Vancouver on the North Shore Mountains get more rain. Snow has been particularly problematic for meteorologists to predict due to variations in elevation and the moderating effect of the coast on temperatures.[citation needed]
Temperatures

The annual average temperature in Vancouver is 10.1 C (50.2 F), amongst the mildest in Canada. It is located in a USDA plant hardiness zone of 8, similar to Seattle, Portland, Amsterdam and London, as well as places such as Atlanta, Georgia and Raleigh, North Carolina, far to the south. The warm Japan Current usually keeps winter temperatures mild, especially along the lower-lying coastal areas.[citation needed]
Despite normally mild winters, some winters see the arrival of cold arctic outflows from the interior of the continent that can sometimes last a week or more. The coldest month on record at Vancouver International Airport was January 1950, with an average low of −9.7 C (15 F) and an average high of −2.9 C (27 F), making for a daily average of −6.3 C (20.7 F). In 2010, Vancouver became the warmest city to date to host the Winter Olympics.[2]
The Greater Vancouver region is also subject to significant variations in summer temperatures, which can change by as much as 5-10 C between inland areas of the Fraser Valley and the ocean-tempered coastal regions. Conversely, winter temperatures tend to be cooler inland.
Daylight

Winters in Vancouver can be dark, as the sky during this time is often covered with low-altitude grey clouds, and the relatively high latitude means early sunsets (as early as 4:15 pm) and late sunrises (as late as 8:05 am).
Summers, in contrast, are characterized by a nearly opposite weather pattern, with consistent high pressure and sunshine. July and August are the sunniest months. For several nights near the summer solstice, there are fewer than 7.5 hours between sunset and sunrise, with twilight lasting past 10 pm and the northern sky slightly lit by the sun all night.
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Old 12-08-2011, 09:45 AM   #45
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"Tonight it is relatively mild. 1C or 38F, but there is a lot of dampness in the air - feels colder."

Actually it IS colder.

1 degree C = 33.8 degrees F.

Ken
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Old 12-08-2011, 10:06 AM   #46
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Aage, we do not have the prolonged deep-freeze like Alberta and points eastward. We get a lot of rain from October to March/April. It snowed a couple of weeks ago, which is rare for November. Snow never lasts long here; it is usually washed away by the reappearance of rain.

Tonight it is relatively mild. 1C or 38F, but there is a lot of dampness in the air - feels colder.

Occasionally, an Arctic front will roll in. I remember one February where we had two weeks where the temp. was below 1C. That was extremely rare.

We usually get through winter with the daily temp. hovering around 1C., like it is today. I have been sleeping in the Airstream with only an electric heater in the bedroom and am very comfortable. If I get an electric mattress pad, I may even be able to get through the night w/o the electric heater...or turning it down to a lower setting. I find the dampness to be the most uncomfortable thing about our winters.
Well, all I can say is that I wish it was that nice here. Why do you sleep in the AS when you're at home? None of my business, I know, just colour me nosey
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Old 12-08-2011, 10:23 AM   #47
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@Aage:
I am with FAN on this one.... Why sleep in the house when you have an Airstream in the driveway! Haha!
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Old 12-08-2011, 12:44 PM   #48
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Well, all I can say is that I wish it was that nice here. Why do you sleep in the AS when you're at home? None of my business, I know, just colour me nosey
I don't mind tellin' ya.

It is almost a year to the day I went shopping for a new bed. (My mattress had gotten awfully saggy and it was killing my back.) Enroute to "Sleep Country Canada" I saw the RV dealership with some shiny Airstreams parked outside. I thought I'd check them out.

As it turned out, I did buy that new bed -
it was just surrounded by an Airstream!

So, why be redundant? I don't need another bed.

Aside from that, I can turn the heat way down in the house and save energy. Mind you - what I spent on the Airstream, I could have probably heated General Motors' Place for the next fifty years - but we won't go there, will we?

Oh...and the Airstream is just more fun!
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Old 12-08-2011, 01:55 PM   #49
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That makes sense, FAN, that makes good sense. May the gods of weather continue to smile on you and your trailer.
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Old 12-08-2011, 05:02 PM   #50
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Vancouver sounds like NYC in the winter—dreary, rainy, cloudy, some snow, melts fast. Probably windy too.

Probably good to stay in the Airstream until June and have food delivered.

Gene
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Old 12-08-2011, 09:35 PM   #51
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New York has better restaurants, and more taxis per capita. They both remind of that saying attributed to a baseball guy, was it Casey Stengle?

"Nobody goes there any more 'cause the place is too crowded."
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Old 12-08-2011, 10:28 PM   #52
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Aside from that, I can turn the heat way down in the house and save energy. Mind you - what I spent on the Airstream, I could have probably heated General Motors' Place for the next fifty years - but we won't go there, will we?
Ain't that the truth?! :~)
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Old 12-10-2011, 12:00 AM   #53
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The Right Question

I agree with Silvertwinkie. The correct question(s) and resulting choice(s) revolve around how much space you need. We have a 27'FC; and while we've had it less than a year, we've been out 17 times. We tend to weekend dry camp along the Central California coast and in the High Sierras, so summer heat isn't much of a problem. We've only used the heat pump twice. We have camped where night time temps dipped into the high 30's. So far, keeping comfortably warm hasn't been a problem. The forced air heater can turn in interior into an oven... quickly.

The ceiling and exposed walls are aluminum; very cool looking and not an interior warmth concern. A large proportion of the aluminum interior surfaces are covered by cabinets, and we don't spend very much time in direct contact with the walls and ceiling....

We love the exterior light and "outside-in" vistas provided by all the glass. We do give up some storage space due to the large windows; but reduced storage capacity forces up to pack and live with less junk. We like that. Even so, we still have room for a small wine rack over the dinette and some beer in the fridge; so life's not too hard on the road ...

All in all, our Airstream is very well laid out and designed; many of its benefits didn't become apparent to us until after we started actually using ours. However, you are doing the right thing investigating alternatives and talking with owners. We looked a 25', 27' and 28' models. We found the 27 has the space and features we want for the extended trips we plan.

So, I'd suggest you decide on a size--length--that fits your needs and dive in. There are no perfect solutions. You'll be very happy.
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Old 12-10-2011, 06:32 AM   #54
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Thanks everyone for some very informative and insightful answers.
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Old 12-11-2011, 08:33 PM   #55
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cpaharley, my thoughts as well. We've read the horror stories (Airstreams are at best 3-season trailers, the aluminum walls and ribs transfer heat and cold, etc.), and we've read the blogs of those who are living very nicely year after year in their Airstreams.

As for one of our concerns, storage space, we're operating on the assumption that an Airstream will have the least amount of storage space, so that if we can pack everything we need (not want) into an Airstream we know it will fit in anything else. That logic is forcing us to really evaluate everything we have.

We still have a couple of years before we have to make any firm decisions, and lots can happen in that time. However, an Airstream is still definitely in the running for us.
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Old 12-12-2011, 11:46 AM   #56
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Though this was mentioned by 'Geezer a couple of posts ago, it bears repeating since there have been many posts on many threads about the cold aluminum walls. Some posts make it sound like the poster sleeps right against the wall. If they do that they either have a fever and need to cool down, are delirious from that fever or are masochists.

We have blankets and pillows that keep us away from the walls. We don't often touch the aluminum except to clean it. It is said the mouse fur walls provide additional insulations, but how much? It is thin and not the type of material that provides real insulation. It will feel warmer because fabric always feels warmer than metal regardless of the temperature. The walls we are more likely to touch are the Formica covered interior partitions and they don't feel any different than anything else inside.

Since Airstreams only have 2" of old fashioned insulation in the walls and it is probably poorly installed given the nature of workmanship at the factory, the R value is probably very low—R3 or 4 maybe? If you want a well insulated Airstream, look for one that has been restored with foam insulation done by someone who understand how to do it. Then ask if it has thermopane windows. Or just get a lot of propane—that will be cheaper over the short run.

Gene
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