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Old 03-14-2013, 01:03 PM   #1
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Should Bed Config (Double vs. Twin) Be a Deciding Factor in a Vintage Purchase?

After quite a bit of research, I think I've settled on my ideal (for now) trailer being a 60's Overlander. I've read through what I think must be every 60's Overlander reno and subsequent camping blog out there and they just seem like such versatile trailers for their size. Not too big, not too small, enough space for different areas and full bath.

I believe I prefer the twin beds vs. double bed model. But, how big of a role should one configuration vs. the other play into my deciding to buy a trailer? If I find a 60's Overlander in great shape that has the double, instead of the twin, configuration, should I pass and hope a twin in great condition comes along? Or, is it not too big of a deal to switch out for twins at a later time, and so the configuration really shouldn't play a role?
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Old 03-14-2013, 02:03 PM   #2
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This definitely comes down to how much you're doing to the trailer in the first place, and what your tolerance for modification is.

It seems like the general consensus is that it's less expensive to buy a trailer that's as good (and as much like you want) as you can afford. I prefer the twin-bed plans as well, at least in older trailers. A true walk-around queen would probably do, but we manage to use most of the space on a king at home so the "double" options are non-starters for us.

Changing a '60s overlander double to a twin would require a fair amount of rework, you'd be removing cabinets and building a base for the bed, etc. For myself, I'd be looking for on that started life as a twin unless I was planning to gut and totally customize anyway.
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Old 03-14-2013, 03:05 PM   #3
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Thumbs up I think.....

......condition should trump everything when buying used.

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Old 03-14-2013, 05:17 PM   #4
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I like Robert Cross's comment.

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Old 03-14-2013, 06:05 PM   #5
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I don't think it's wise to purchase a trailer with the intent of changing from a twin to a double or vice versa unless the affected cabinetry is going to be replaced regardless, as in a complete redesign.

Although the specifics vary from trailer to trailer, in general, the bed layout affects a great deal -- cabinetry, outside compartment doors, placement of lights and switches, wiring, furnace ductwork. Moving beds will cover parts of the floor and walls and expose other parts. Done right, it's an enormous job -- unless all those areas are being redone anyway for other reasons.
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Old 03-14-2013, 07:22 PM   #6
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i really like having storage space available from outside (34' twin beds). i don't have to go inside to get things i use outside. on a smaller trailer it may different.
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Old 03-14-2013, 09:31 PM   #7
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Quote:
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Although the specifics vary from trailer to trailer, in general, the bed layout affects a great deal -- cabinetry, outside compartment doors, placement of lights and switches, wiring, furnace ductwork. Moving beds will cover parts of the floor and walls and expose other parts. Done right, it's an enormous job -- unless all those areas are being redone anyway for other reasons.
Thank you for this insight. It's very good to know its not as easy as stripping out old fixtures and building in new ones. The twin configuration seems ideal for the way I want to use the camper--currently, camping with friends (don't mind sleeping in close quarters with them, but the same full sized bed doesn't scream perfect to me) and future, possible camping with small children. Given the "hidden" complexities of changing configuration, I think holding out for a twin model in good condition will pay dividends rather than jumping at a double bed config in good condition that comes along.
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Old 03-14-2013, 11:10 PM   #8
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Should Bed Config (Double vs. Twin) Be a Deciding Factor in a Vintage Purchase?

Greetings fleurdenola!

Quote:
Originally Posted by fleurdenola View Post
After quite a bit of research, I think I've settled on my ideal (for now) trailer being a 60's Overlander. I've read through what I think must be every 60's Overlander reno and subsequent camping blog out there and they just seem like such versatile trailers for their size. Not too big, not too small, enough space for different areas and full bath.

I believe I prefer the twin beds vs. double bed model. But, how big of a role should one configuration vs. the other play into my deciding to buy a trailer? If I find a 60's Overlander in great shape that has the double, instead of the twin, configuration, should I pass and hope a twin in great condition comes along? Or, is it not too big of a deal to switch out for twins at a later time, and so the configuration really shouldn't play a role?
I can attest to the versatility of the Overlander. I have owned my '64 Overlander since 1995 and have known the Overlander since the original owners took delivery. There are a few things to consider when it comes to the two typical florplans:
  • Overlander Double
    • The double bed is a fold-out arrangement similar to the front lounge.
      • Advantage -- folds down into a wider bed
      • Advantage -- opposite wall has additional drawer storage and an additional wardrobe in some models
      • Disadvantage -- the folding mattress does not lend itself to being replicated in a standard mattress like those utilized in home bedding
      • Usually only has the possibility of a hammock-bunk above the fold-out double
  • Overlander Twin
    • The twin bed is a single mattress (usually plain foam with a cotton twill cover unless replaced by a prior owner) . . . the mattress is slightly smaller than a home twin (mine is 1.5" shorter and just under 3" narrower).
      • Advantage -- custom bedding manufacturers can easily make custom mattresses to achieve the comfort level that you desire.
      • Disadvantage -- you loose valuable drawer storage as well as a wardrobe (not that there isn't adequate storage in the twin floorplan)
      • A hammock bunk was optional above each of the twins
I don't know whether it is an advantage or disadvantage, but in most twin models there are two operable windows above each of the twin beds . . . but in the double, there are often two windows above the bed and only one above the dresser/wardrobe on the opposite wall (this was a consideration for active WBCCI members who often camped at rallys where AC power didn't permit air conditioner usage).

Good luck with your investigation and research!

Kevin

P.S.: Something else to consider in the era that you are considering:
  • 1961 was the first year for the Henschen DuraTorque axle. The 1960 models would have an axle or axles on springs. The Overlander was available in 1960 as a single axle trailer.
  • 1963 and earlier Overlancers would most likely have a pressure rather than demand water system. The galvanized pressure tanks are no longer available in a size that will fit the available space so most owners end up converting to a modern plastic tank with demand water pump.
  • 1964 Overlanders would be the first to come from the factory with a standard Univolt power converter. 1963 and earlier Overlanders would have lights with both 12-volt DC bulbs and 120-volt AC bulbs, and things such as the water/air pump, furnace blower, and vent fans would have individual power management devices.
  • 1964 and earlier Overlanders would have a door-within-a-door as standard equipment as well as jalousie windows beside the door. 1965 Overlanders are a transition year with many one year only features.
  • 1966-1968 Overlanders would have the Corning Tempered Glass windows that are curved, and until very recently with the advent of reproduction window glass, were difficult to replace if broken.
  • 1969 Overlanders would be another transition year. The Corning windows disappeared in favor of windows that would remain in use for a number of years. As a transition year there are a number of 1960s features that would be disappearing as well as new features for the 1970s. This would be the year that the transition was made from a 2" coupler to a 2 5/16" coupler.
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Old 03-15-2013, 12:01 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fleurdenola View Post
The twin configuration seems ideal for the way I want to use the camper--currently, camping with friends (don't mind sleeping in close quarters with them, but the same full sized bed doesn't scream perfect to me) and future, possible camping with small children.
I have a twin largely for these reasons, too, though mine is a Classic and the tradeoffs are a little different. Another fact to consider is that there is generally more standing room in twins making it more convenient to change clothes. In most years and lengths where twins were available around 25% of the trailers produced were twins, so they are out there but you may have to look for a while.
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