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Old 05-01-2005, 01:21 AM   #1
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The 2500 Mile Mistake.

Or How to buy a used rock guard for $100 + $500 shipping

As some of you know I have recently been looking for a widebody six sleeper AS. I found a 1996 rear queen w/dinette on rvtraderonline this week priced at $14,500.

The trailer is located in TX and I am in CA. When I called I was the second person who was ready to buy. The first was from Colorado and was already driving down. So I missed out.

Well, they called back and said the CO people said the trailer did not have enough wardrobe space for them so it was still available for me.

I rushed around (first mistake) getting the preperations to go to TX. I did have them email me some more pictures and was starting to get concerned with what I saw. There was some roof dents, streetside awning missing, front end ripples, and tears in the headliner.

I called back and told him it was too far gone thanks anyway. Well, me and my wife discussed it an thought, maybe it's not that bad for the price. Maybe it could be fixed up (second mistake). I called back and talked him down to $14,000 before I left.

We took off at 3:45 pm Wed. At about 4:45pm I had second thoughts and called home to say I don't feel good about this deal. But we talked it over and decided it would be worth the look (third mistake).

Well, about 23 hours later I was in TX. ( had some help driving from my dad). The place was a rinky dink second hand dealer. When I got out of the truck and saw the trailer I knew I could not live with the amout of outside damage it had. There were the ripples in the front seams on the roof, big dents under the streetside awning rail, and a tear in the skin near the water heater patched with vulkem. Also faded paint and failing clearcoat every where.

When they opened the door the two feet of weather stripping was blowing in the wind, was not a good sign.

Inside, there was two very bad water stains about 2 feet in length, crooked cabinets, drawers that no longer fit, and a bulkhead wall not reaching the ceiling by 1/2", and somekind of drip stains from the skylights. There were several bad rips, tears, and cracks in the headliner. Some I knew about, but it was worse in person.

I thought, no way can I drag this thing home. My 34 year old trailer is nicer than this thing. I told him, sorry but its too far gone for me (first good decision) and we headed back that very minute to CA. While driving home we went by a 2000 something AS in the slow lane, and I thought how embarassed I would have been towing that '96.

On the way home we passed Tucson,AZ where Oasis RV is located. I purchase a lot via mail order from them and thought it would be nice to check it out. I also knew they had a '97 widebody and wanted to see if one of that era could still be in nice condition after what I saw.

Their '97 was in pretty nice shape, but they wanted $23K plus it was missing the dinette and had rear twins. But the headliner and body were in good shape.

While walking the grounds I thought to ask if they had a used rock guard for my '71 Safari (second good decision). Turns out they did have a used one with a small crack. After a little haggling I got it for the price I wanted.

So, it wasn't a total loss. Learned a lot and now I get to install a rock guard.

Next ad must read, Original owner, excellent condition, non-smoking and no pets, and did we say excellent condition.

I will pay more for it, but it will be worth it!

BTW, the $500 shipping I refer to is what it cost for me to drive to TX and back in four days!
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Old 05-01-2005, 01:44 AM   #2
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I was the Coloradoan who was first on the scene. Hard to believe that an Airstream could get that bad in less than ten years. Glad you didn't bur either.
Just for the record, the price is now $16,000. More if they do repairs.
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Old 05-01-2005, 01:45 AM   #3
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Oh, wow! What a waste of your time!

Hey, next time, how about asking on the forum if anybody local could go take an independent look at potential rigs. I've seen that done before here. It might be better than driving halfway across the country!

Sorry again for your terrible experience!

Lynn
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Old 05-01-2005, 02:14 AM   #4
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Kenny, wish I could have talked to you a few days ago!

Glad you passed on it. I would not wish that trailer on anyone!

Quote:
Originally Posted by kenny2
I was the Coloradoan who was first on the scene. Hard to believe that an Airstream could get that bad in less than ten years. Glad you didn't bur either.
Just for the record, the price is now $16,000. More if they do repairs.
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Old 05-01-2005, 02:17 AM   #5
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Thanks Lynn,

I did post in the "so you want to buy an airstream...'

I had a nice response from parisiancowgirl, but they seemed about 5 hours away and that was too far for me to ask.

It was very nice of them to offer though!

Quote:
Originally Posted by eubank
Oh, wow! What a waste of your time!

Hey, next time, how about asking on the forum if anybody local could go take an independent look at potential rigs. I've seen that done before here. It might be better than driving halfway across the country!

Sorry again for your terrible experience!

Lynn
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Old 05-01-2005, 07:24 AM   #6
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In Kentucky there is a law that auto lots must provide the PO name and address,I dont know if this applys to RVs or not but it is worth asking,it is a valuable tool when buying a used auto,
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Old 05-01-2005, 07:45 AM   #7
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Tim,

Sorry to hear about your disappointment. As I shared earlier, "been there, done that". (diesel van)

It'd be a lot easier to build those bunks and you'd still have your smaller, lighter "classic".

If you're really itching for a longer 'Stream with more sleeping and would like to see the country, my Overlander will be for sale soon for half of what they were asking for the one you looked at. (Has new water heater, refrig, water pump, toilet, bathroom, new wrap around dinette,and most importantly, new bath floor!!!) Also has new wheels, brakes & backing plates, and new gaskets.)

It's not polished, though!

Just be patient, the best deals come looking for you.
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Old 05-01-2005, 08:06 AM   #8
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Tim

Been there done that (Argosy). I'm amazed that someone could trash a trailer that quick - some folks just don't take care of things. Oasis has a really great reputation - you might want to have them on the lookout for one.

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Old 05-01-2005, 08:24 AM   #9
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Are you sure the price wan't $1400.00?
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Old 05-01-2005, 11:14 AM   #10
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If that trailer is as bad as you describe, with obvious water damage, they're going to be hard pressed to sell it for much more than you haggled 'em down to. My '94 has it's "beauty marks", but there's no way a trailer that age should be in that bad of shape. If you still have those pictures I for one wouldn't mind seeing them.

Just out of curiosity, where in Texas was it?
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Old 05-01-2005, 11:51 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pick
Are you sure the price wan't $1400.00?
I might go as high as $140.00, if they delivered it...
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Old 05-01-2005, 01:40 PM   #12
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I'll bid $1.40
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Old 05-01-2005, 01:51 PM   #13
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So you want to buy a trailer that is 3 states away????

eubank -- This is the mother-of-all-distant-lookers link, So you want to buy a trailer that is 3 states away????. I don't know if this is how SafariTim found parisiancowgirl. It's always good to get this one back out there. This post is 'sticky' (so it stays toward the top) in the Our Community forum on this website.
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Old 05-01-2005, 05:31 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scf31
In Kentucky there is a law that auto lots must provide the PO name and address,I dont know if this applys to RVs or not but it is worth asking,it is a valuable tool when buying a used auto,
I did try to use the WBCCI numbers but the listing did not have a phone number.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PizzaChop
It'd be a lot easier to build those bunks and you'd still have your smaller, lighter "classic".

If you're really itching for a longer 'Stream with more sleeping and would like to see the country, my Overlander will be for sale soon for half of what they were asking for the one you looked at. (Has new water heater, refrig, water pump, toilet, bathroom, new wrap around dinette,and most importantly, new bath floor!!!) Also has new wheels, brakes & backing plates, and new gaskets.)

It's not polished, though!

Just be patient, the best deals come looking for you
Your trailer sounds real nice. I'm sure you will sell it easily and they will be lucky to get it If I get a different one, I'd want a late model with the gray tank, six sleeper, good appliances. I'll just keep looking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken J
Been there done that (Argosy). I'm amazed that someone could trash a trailer that quick - some folks just don't take care of things. Oasis has a really great reputation - you might want to have them on the lookout for one.
I had a good time looking around at Oasis. They were very nice folks there. I bought the used rock guard and they set me up with all the little hardware pieces I would need and wrapped the guard in bubble wrap. A dealer listing may be more than I am ready to pay, but we'll keep looking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pick
Are you sure the price wan't $1400.00?
That would have been better! But I'd still have to think about it

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coriolis1
If that trailer is as bad as you describe, with obvious water damage, they're going to be hard pressed to sell it for much more than you haggled 'em down to. My '94 has it's "beauty marks", but there's no way a trailer that age should be in that bad of shape. If you still have those pictures I for one wouldn't mind seeing them.

Just out of curiosity, where in Texas was it?
It was in an accident of some sort and the damage was not fixed or not fixed right which caused the water damage. The trailer is still lised on rvtraderonline with photos. It was in El Paso.

Just curious, is your '94 trailer a wide body style?
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