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Old 06-12-2007, 10:23 PM   #1
1969 31' Sovereign
Edmonton , Alberta
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 13
Vintage vs. Modern?

Hello All,

was just wondering, price being no object and time unlimited would a person want to purchase a vintage AS or a modern one? Does anyone out there own 2 or more AS where one is vintage and the other modern? I find it incredible how very little has changed over the last 40 years and just wondering what some of you very friendly people thought as we are now considering the purchase of an 06 Safari 25FB to add to our collection. Scary thought, some collect cars, sports cards, etc., I want to collect trailers...


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Old 06-12-2007, 10:36 PM   #2
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2003 25' Classic
Birmingham , Alabama
Join Date: Mar 2007
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Earlier this year, I was planning to finance a full vintage restoration project...frame up.

Then I started looking at the modern (but not brand new) models.

I ended up buying my "like new" '03 Classic for about the same price as a major vintage restoration. And pretty much everything works -- there are no issues.

To each his own, but I've no regrets about taking this route. In fact, I feel lucky we found our trailer as it's perfect for our needs. And while we'd still be waiting for that restoration to be finished, we've already spent more than a month in our Airstream. :-)

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Old 06-12-2007, 10:47 PM   #3
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2015 25' FB Flying Cloud
2012 23' FB Flying Cloud
2005 25' Safari
Santa Rosa Beach , Florida
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I want a polished 1958 24 footer with a 2008 interior.
SuEllyn & Brian McCabe
WBCCI #3628 -- AIR #14872 -- TAC #FL-7
2015 FC 25' FB (Lucy) with HAHA
2005 Suburban 2500 Quadrasteer (Olivia) & 2011 Silverado 3500 (Fred) with Outfitter Truck Camper (Ethel)
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Old 06-12-2007, 10:51 PM   #4
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For me that is a difficult question to answer.

Partly because there are so many different models every year and many different vintages. I think Airstreams have changed a lot over the years.
The older Airstreams can have pain in the neck problems because of wear and tear, and newer Airstreams can have pain in the neck problems due to quality control.
I agree with you fully that you need many Airstreams. Just as you need many different tools in your tool box, you need many different trailers for
different uses. Small trailers for quick getaways, or to fight gas prices on long distance trips. Big trailers for family trips or entertaining. Even bigger trailers for long term outings.
Perhaps in this fantasy scenario world where time and money are of no concern, Airstream will come up with Robots to drive our rigs while we nap
(especially on the ride home !!!).
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Old 06-12-2007, 11:23 PM   #5
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2000 25' Safari
West of Fort Worth , Texas
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I have had both - I used to have a 1998 Safari which at the time was about 5 years old, I now own a 1972 Globetrotter.
Each have advantages. I like the towability of the GT due to size and weight. Prices are generally cheaper with the older ones. (Not always)
With new(er) you generally have less problems, floor rot, water heaters going out, etc.
But, if money were no issue?? I don't know - I don't live in that world.
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Old 06-12-2007, 11:32 PM   #6
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1968 17' Caravel
Battle Ground , Washington
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If money were no issue I would have a whole fleet, new and old, big and small, retro and modernized, all stored in a climate controlled hangar. Then I would feel guilty that I was hogging them and have to sell them for other folks to enjoy

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Old 06-13-2007, 05:20 AM   #7
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Tipton , Iowa
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I have had several of both, vintage and modern, and in varying degrees of vintage-ness and modern-ness.

I'd say it depends on where your interests lie. If you're interested in travelling in comfort, a late-model coach is the way to go. If you're more interested in the restoration and novelty of owning a vintage coach, and travelling is secondary or something you only do occasionally, then vintage is right up your alley.

Both can require maintenance depending on how well they've been maintained; obviously vintage could require a frame-off resto depending on what you're willing to undertake.

If you're interested mainly in travelling in comfort, but like the idea of occasionally playing in a vintage coach, then it's not unreasonable to have one of each. Many folks do!

AIR 2053 Current: 2006 Born Free 32 RQ Kodiak Chassis, & 1995 Coachmen B-van
Former Airstreams: 1953 Flying Cloud, 1957 Overlander, 1961 Bambi, 1970 Safari Special, 1978 Argosy Minuet, 1985 325 Moho, 1994 Limited 34' Two-door, 1994 B190 "B-Van"
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Old 06-13-2007, 05:30 AM   #8
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Vintage and Modern!

Yes, we are one of those people who own a modern trailer (2002 Bambi) and two vintage trailers ('64 Bambi II and '54 FC). We were brand new to trailering back when we purchased the 2002 pre-owned, from eBay. It is a nice trailer and is always ready for camping at a moments notice. We have always been attracted to the vintage rigs too and finally found the vintage rig of our dreams -- a '64 Bambi II. Over the last two years, we have been restoring it back to its former glory and we have enjoyed every minute of it. As soon as the Bambi II is restored, we will start on the Flying Cloud.
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Old 06-13-2007, 07:00 AM   #9
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1973 25' Tradewind
Phoenix , Arizona
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I am a proud Vintage owner and love both of mine . . . however, if price was no object the 75th anniversary edition is by far my favorite Airstream. It came out last year. They had one on the lot in Mesa, AZ for a long time. Bet it's gone now (that's at Dillon's RV).
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Phoenix, Arizona

Fulltimer since April 2007 with my dog Jake. In the first year we hit 32 states and D.C.

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Old 06-13-2007, 07:22 AM   #10
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1974 31' Sovereign
1993 21' Sovereign
Colfax , North Carolina
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If nobody buys new trailers, there won't be any used (vintage) trailers...
If the trailers didn't weigh so much more now, I wouldn't mind owning new, but I like our vintage unit. A comparable new trailer is almost 10,000 pounds, versus around 7500 for our (same size and equipment) vintage unit.
Interestingly, I recently sold what I considered to be our vintage unit, and got a modern unit, only to realize the modern unit was vintage as well...
Meddle not in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy, and taste good with ketchup.
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Old 06-13-2007, 07:56 AM   #11
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1994 30' Excella
alexandria , Kentucky
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I hope I can answer your question though I am a bit frustrated with my trailer at the moment - it is taking too much time and aggrevation.

I am pretty new to the trailer game myself. I have been an owner for two and a half months and have spent well over a hundred hours working on this trailer and one heck of a lot of money. (money is realative to each person depending on how much you have and I like most people need to make my money work hard) Maybe I have a bit of a obsessive compulsive disorder but I cnstantly have to improve on what I have so I end up spending a lot of time and money gettting things right. My wife wonders if we will ever go camping but I know in the end this trailer or my older tow vehicles will be very reliable.

To answer your original question you must first figure out your goal. My personal goal was to find a airstream that was a 1972 or newer based on having a grey water tank and it must be the size that my current tow vehicle could handle.

I found my trailer on ebay and purchased it knowing it had a few things wrong. I felt good about it because I read various posts on this forum for hours so I knew what I was getting myself into. Honestly I looked for a trailer for about two or three years until I found one that I liked.

As others have stated each generation of trailers have their pros and cons. Do your self a favor and read the forum extensively and see if you want all the work and $$ associated with a vintage unit or some of the work and $$ associated with a newer unit. You will have to work on and maintain both.
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Old 06-13-2007, 09:17 AM   #12
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Keymar , Maryland
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I want both.
I now own a modern one and I appreciate the modern convieniences. I also want a vintage (from the year I was born) smaller trailer to do short trips in.
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Looking for a 1962 Flying Cloud

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Old 06-13-2007, 09:53 AM   #13
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1973 27' Overlander
1972 29' Ambassador
St. Paul , Minnesota
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Every time I get close to my varmit, err, vintage trailer I wish I could be doing nearly the same things on a four or six year old trailer since it's neglect I am fighting, selectively improving subsystems now that I know what to look for....

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Old 06-13-2007, 09:53 AM   #14
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2004 25' Safari
. , Illinois
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I thought I posted this before but can't seem to see what I posted, so I'll repost.

New units are great, comfy, etc, they also depreciate fast the first 4-5 years. Addtionally, having owned 2 new units, a 2003 and 2004, my incling would be if going new, look for a good preowned unit because of shell issues that have been noticed on new units. Some have it, some don't. Some more, some less than others.

Vintage, since money is no object, you pretty much see what you are getting into for the most part. You can spend lots on a great referb vintage, or you do it yourself.

I use to think the vintage folks were crazy brave, but lately, I've come to realize they had a much better idea than I would have ever thought.

Computers manufactured by companies such as IBM, Compaq and millions of others are by far the most popular with about 70 million machines in use worldwide. Macintosh fans note that cockroaches are far more numerous than humans and that numbers alone do not denote a higher life form. -NY Times 11/91
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