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Old 01-20-2016, 06:03 PM   #1
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What makes a Safari a Safari

I see there have been several sizes of Safari Trailers and that Airstream has been making them for many years. My question is, what makes a Safari a Safari? I assume it is a trim level, but what makes them unique? Thanks, Cameron
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Old 01-20-2016, 06:22 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by curnes View Post
I see there have been several sizes of Safari Trailers and that Airstream has been making them for many years. My question is, what makes a Safari a Safari? I assume it is a trim level, but what makes them unique? Thanks, Cameron
Older Safaris were named to differentiate in length. Early Safaris were 22' long, newer ones were 23'.
The names was resurrected to differentiate between the "stick and staple" trailers and the more expensive trailers with the higher-end appointments. Later versions of the Safari were rebadged as Flying Clouds.
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Old 01-20-2016, 06:27 PM   #3
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I cannot speak for the Vintage but for the later model Safari model line. What I have found that is interesting is that besides Safari being the entry line which is now Sport and Flying Cloud, they are/were much more an integration of other models as well. Aside from the SE models, they have the insulated roof and upholstered walls of the Classic, the cabinetry of the Flying Cloud and the windows of the Sport models. The SEs followed the International more closely with the naked interior. Airstream referred to them as lighter weight and practical. The only thing they were lighter than was the Classics. Practical probably means pricing. Aside from the windows (non SE models) it is every bit Flying Cloud though I have become a fan of the lined interior now, especially in cooler weather.
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Old 01-20-2016, 06:41 PM   #4
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Some years ago they came out with a Safari 20. In 2007 they added a bunch of windows and equipment and called it a Safari SE 20, we bought that one. Then a couple of years later they dropped the Safari name and renamed the exact Airstream a Flying Cloud 20.

The only thing unique is the name plate.
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Old 01-20-2016, 06:54 PM   #5
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That's a good question, Overlander63. Having very recently purchased an '06 Safari I will weigh in on what little I learned while searching for the trailer. According to the UVW they are definitely lighter. I see that as a good thing. Since we are seldom in one place long, pulling an extra 1000# or so just didn't make sense. There is a little less cabinetry, and the faces of the cabinetry are not the heavier oak of the Classic model. Just my impression, but they maybe used some honey comb or foam cores in the over head cabinetry. The standard windows had less glass. Glass is pretty heavy.

That being said, I am very pleased with the fit and finish. All wood work is mica faced inside and out. It is all solid core plywood with no particle board or MDF cores. I love the vinyl flooring in all but the bedroom. It gives the appearance of light oak, and is very easily cared for.

It must be well insulated because even at 18 degrees F it only takes a few minutes for the gas furnace to warm it up. So far that is about the extent of my knowledge. I am here to learn and share. It will be very interesting to hear other opinions.
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Old 01-21-2016, 02:28 PM   #6
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I have an '06 23 with the "L" couch and fold out table. It is an SE I believe. 75th anniversary edition. It's just like a current flying cloud with the exception of the smaller windows. It has the padded interior which I like. It's warm. The windows only crank out at the bottom so not too much for ventilation. The fantastic fans run a lot!


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Old 01-22-2016, 11:43 PM   #7
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Newer "regular" Safaris have the furry lining interior, Hehr windows (those that crank out from the the bottom), and no pano windows. Safari SE models have the aluminum interiors, windows like the Internationals (the whole window pane props outward from the top hinge), and pano widows. Safari SEs were rebadged as Flying Clouds in 2009 I think it was. We have a 2006 Safari SE which is the same package as the current Flying Cloud.
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Old 01-23-2016, 06:53 AM   #8
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We have the 06 and love it! I've toyed with the idea of buying a newer one but really like some of the features that are no longer available. I hesitated to buy one with mouse fur but we do a lot of cold weather camping and it is super cozy. After 10 years it's still holding up nicely. I also wanted the panoramic windows but really don't miss them as the corners are lined and make a great place to curl up and read a book without drafts of window. I go outside to enjoy a panoramic view. I feel like I have more privacy. I won't give up the bigger closet in hall and great bathroom storage. This size tows like a dream and the smaller size gets us into more places. The microwave is huge and easy access, it has an oven and a bigger refrigerator. We have everything we need for months at a time - nothing is jammed in the space making me crazy - and room to spare. I would like the other type windows vs half open type but these will be fine with two FFans.
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Old 01-23-2016, 06:57 AM   #9
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1999 34' Excella
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The differences between my 1999 Excella and 2000 Safari are:
1. Interior cabinet doors are solid oak in the Excella. In the Safari the doors are particle board with a vinyl laminate surface.
2. The waste dump valves are enclosed in the belly pan in the Excella. The Safari has exterior valves.
3. The black tank is in the belly near the axles in the Excella. The black tank in the Safari is above the floor beneath the toilet.
4. The Excella has a porcelain toilet. The Safari has a plastic toilet.
5. The Excella has aluminum propane tanks with visual gauges in addition to fuel level monitor system. The Safari has plain steel tanks.
6. The cabinet counter tops in the Excella are Corian. The cabinet tops in the Safari are Formica.
7. The interior light fixtures in the Excella are a combination of incandescent and fluorescent. In the Safari they are all incandescent.
8. Some of the interior light fixtures in the Excella are brass with decorative glass and/or lamp shades. In the Safari they are all white plastic.
9. The refrigerator in the Excella has temperature adjustments. The Safari fridge has no adjustment.
10. The closet doors in the Excella are solid wood frame mirrors. The Safari doors are hollow core laminate.
11. The operable windows in the Excella are better quality and function, they open wide. In the Safari the opening is smaller and the quality is less.
12. The Excella has two batteries. The Safari has one.
13. The Excella's batteries are on the inside under the sofa, accessible through two hatches in the exterior wall. The Safari's battery is on the exterior inside a metal box welded between the frame.
14. The Excella an electric tongue jack. The Safari has a manual jack.
15. The Excella has a drawer made in the rear bumper for storage. The Safari has a much smaller fixed storage box with a hinged lid.
16. The Excella has a heat pump. The Safari has an air conditioner with a heat strip.
17. The spice rack in the Excella has two shelves. The Safari has one shelf.
18. The Excella has a black tank rinse. None in the Safari.
19. The Excella has an exterior water faucet. None in the Safari.
20. The Excella has a slide out bracket for storing the electric cord in a separate compartment. The Safari has a grommet in the bottom of the bumper storage box the electric cord drops through, so the sewer slinky and electric cord are stored together.
21. The Excella water heater is both propane and electric. The Safari is propane only. (both have electronic ignition)
22. The storage beneath the sofa of the Excella is a drawer. The Safari has plastic bins behind a hinged upholstered plywood door.
23. There are storage drawers beneath the bed in the Excella. The Safari has plastic bins.
24. The Excella has window shades with curtains. The Safari has curtains only.
25. The Excella has two skylights with shades. The Safari has none.
26. The fantastic fan has a wall thermostat in the Excella. The Safari's fan controls are in the fan.
27. The Excella has 12v breakers and fuses. The Safari has fuses, no 12v breakers.

These are some of the differences that come to mind. There are more.
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Old 01-23-2016, 08:50 AM   #10
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The base Safari's (NOT the SE/LE versions) had the Flying cloud style cabinets, the upholstered walls/ceilings of the legacy Classic's but the standard RV industry windows that only opened a small lower section of the glass (poor ventilation) with no panorama windows in the front.

The SE/LE versions had the upscale awning style windows and pano fronts, aluminum interiors lie the FC and International and a few other features such as a street side awning. This started in 2005 (we had one of the very first Safari SE's that was essentially identical to the current Flying Clouds) and the name change to FC was somewhere in 2008-2009 I think.

The major distinguishing feature of the base Safari line was the much cheaper windows. There were typically other cost cutting moves such as no black tank flush, no heat pump, basic A/V, sometimes no stabilizer jacks, etc.
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Old 01-23-2016, 09:19 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A W Warn View Post
The differences between my 1999 Excella and 2000 Safari are:
1. Interior cabinet doors are solid oak in the Excella. In the Safari the doors are particle board with a vinyl laminate surface.
2. The waste dump valves are enclosed in the belly pan in the Excella. The Safari has exterior valves.
3. The black tank is in the belly near the axles in the Excella. The black tank in the Safari is above the floor beneath the toilet.
4. The Excella has a porcelain toilet. The Safari has a plastic toilet.
5. The Excella has aluminum propane tanks with visual gauges in addition to fuel level monitor system. The Safari has plain steel tanks.
6. The cabinet counter tops in the Excella are Corian. The cabinet tops in the Safari are Formica.
7. The interior light fixtures in the Excella are a combination of incandescent and fluorescent. In the Safari they are all incandescent.
8. Some of the interior light fixtures in the Excella are brass with decorative glass and/or lamp shades. In the Safari they are all white plastic.
9. The refrigerator in the Excella has temperature adjustments. The Safari fridge has no adjustment.
10. The closet doors in the Excella are solid wood frame mirrors. The Safari doors are hollow core laminate.
11. The operable windows in the Excella are better quality and function, they open wide. In the Safari the opening is smaller and the quality is less.
12. The Excella has two batteries. The Safari has one.
13. The Excella's batteries are on the inside under the sofa, accessible through two hatches in the exterior wall. The Safari's battery is on the exterior inside a metal box welded between the frame.
14. The Excella an electric tongue jack. The Safari has a manual jack.
15. The Excella has a drawer made in the rear bumper for storage. The Safari has a much smaller fixed storage box with a hinged lid.
16. The Excella has a heat pump. The Safari has an air conditioner with a heat strip.
17. The spice rack in the Excella has two shelves. The Safari has one shelf.
18. The Excella has a black tank rinse. None in the Safari.
19. The Excella has an exterior water faucet. None in the Safari.
20. The Excella has a slide out bracket for storing the electric cord in a separate compartment. The Safari has a grommet in the bottom of the bumper storage box the electric cord drops through, so the sewer slinky and electric cord are stored together.
21. The Excella water heater is both propane and electric. The Safari is propane only. (both have electronic ignition)
22. The storage beneath the sofa of the Excella is a drawer. The Safari has plastic bins behind a hinged upholstered plywood door.
23. There are storage drawers beneath the bed in the Excella. The Safari has plastic bins.
24. The Excella has window shades with curtains. The Safari has curtains only.
25. The Excella has two skylights with shades. The Safari has none.
26. The fantastic fan has a wall thermostat in the Excella. The Safari's fan controls are in the fan.
27. The Excella has 12v breakers and fuses. The Safari has fuses, no 12v breakers.

These are some of the differences that come to mind. There are more.
Just about the same level of differences I see for my '98 Excella 30'.

Every time I think of down-sizing, and I go look at the new ones, I'm disappointed by what I see. And pulling my 7600 lb rig (with 780 lbs on the tongue) hasn't been a problem with my 1/2 ton pickup.
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Old 01-23-2016, 09:44 AM   #12
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I can only tell about my '06 Safari, but here is what is in mine.

I have been doing some conversions and additions. In the process of running wires through new holes both drilled and hole sawed there has been no particle board or MDF board encountered. I have the cores from the hole drilled places if anyone doubts this.

There is no vinyl facing on any of the wood. It is all faced inside and out with high pressure laminated plastic mica. White inside. Wood grain outside.

The spice rack has two shelves.

It has a black tank flush connection.

It has 4 stabilizer jacks.

It has a Dometic Penguin heat pump.

The battery box outside has two group 24 batteries. It is great for hooking up my portable solar panels. This gives enough to keep the batteries charged.

It has a power tongue jack.

The overhead light fixtures were all incandescent. They were easily upgraded to LED.

The refrigerator has 4 temperature settings.

There is enough storage room under the sofa for two folding chairs.

I have been using some small plug in inverters. Since I have an extra 1800 watt inverter, it's a little overkill; but I am thinking of installing it. If so I will convert the battery box for 2-6 volt golf cart batteries hooked in series. I would also up grade my portable solar panels to provide more power.

The floor in the bath is not raised for a black tank installed above the floor. I will have to check on the poop tank.

This is mine. I have no idea what may be in other Airstreams. YMMV

We like out of the way campsites along trout streams. Hook ups are seldom used, and we move frequently. The size and lightness of the Safari makes getting it into some tight places possible.
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Old 01-25-2016, 08:58 PM   #13
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Wow, that's a lot of information. I was just asking out of curiosity. We have a 2000 Bambi, that we are very happy with. I had just seen many Safari Models and was curious about what made them unique. It sounds like they are lighter and perhaps less expensive.
Thanks again for all your thoughtful posts. Cameron
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Old 01-26-2016, 08:55 AM   #14
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Ours is a 75th anniversary edition, says LS under the Safari badge but SE on the original sticker. Sounds like they're all just a little different even for the same model year. We have

Padded ceiling
Polyester "mouse fur" walls (aluminum wall at the kitchen)
15,000 BTU AC/Heat Pump
Black tank flush
4 Stabilizers
Power jack
Light oak laminate cabinet facing
White counter top
Open only bottom of window, rotating dial opener
No spice rack
Group 24 x 2 battery box
Solar panel

Fridge has a slide thermistor, no other setting option
Incandescent lights (converted to LED now)
It came with an LED TV but not digital. Upgraded to 2 LED 28" & 25"

L-Couch (recovered in leather now) I hate this thing, very uncomfortable
L-Couch folds out to a bed, mattress stored in TV, also uncomfortable
L-Couch storage holds:
spare water hose,
4 flamingoes,
bag of tent pegs
Coleman folding table,
2 folding chairs,
1-5 gallon water can,
box of AS style lights,
box of bug sprays (4 cans),
25' extension cord,
pack of printer paper,
2 10 lb. bags of charcoal,
lantern,
AS book bag of paperwork,
600 watt inverter,
4 fishing rods,
tackle box and more. [I love this thing]

The shower is just a storage locker where we keep the laundry basket, traveling plants and spare outdoor carpeting. The toilet is raised and nearly impossible to close the door when "throning". Her feet dangle. We have black and gray tanks. There is an outdoor shower which is rarely used for anything.

We have talked about going larger and haven't ruled it out yet, but we're happy with the size, it goes anywhere, easy to tow, comfortable enough for the 2 of us. We're smaller people, 5'7" and 5' nothing. The corner bed takes some getting used to, especially when we have a king at home. We've learned to be on the lookout for when one of us moves so the other can get out of the way. Spent one month last year, spending 3 months in one trip this year. So far, so good and getting happier as the time passes.
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