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Old 07-12-2015, 02:31 PM   #57
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1990 25' Excella
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I've admired Airstreams since I was a kid. I remember asking my Dad what the red numbers were for over 50 years ago. So it was inevitable that if I ever bought an RV of any kind that it would be an Airstream.

Another great attraction for me was the potential of owning one for free. I was involved in vintage Porsches for many years and I made money with the hobby as they were going up in value the entire time I was fooling around with them. I thought maybe I could do the same thing with an Airstream given that they are also iconic, well built and hold their value well. Also, I learned a bit messing with old Porsches and I figured I could probably work on an AS as well.

I think that is happening. I shopped carefully for over a year and was *very* fortunate to buy a '90 25' Excella in exceptional condition with very few road miles on it. The oven had never been used and overall wear was minimal. The PO had tinkered with it and had done a lot of sorting. That has continued under my watch and it appears that it's worth more than I paid for it a couple of years ago. Pretty neat to own an icon and maybe break even or make a few bucks with it. Although it is a bit academic as it's something my kids will have to worry about.

Cheers,
John
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Old 07-12-2015, 03:18 PM   #58
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It's better than a Psychiatrist.....
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Old 07-12-2015, 03:45 PM   #59
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The Airstreams don't smell of chemicals as did other trailer brands we checked out.
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Old 07-12-2015, 04:21 PM   #60
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I just visited the rating site you mentioned. The areas of concern are Support- dealer and manufacturer, value and quality. The only one I would even be concerned about is quality. I have dealt with dealers and that is pretty much an issue whatever the brand. Value just means it costs a lot. What specifically is a quality issue? That would be the question to me. Everything else is in the good category.
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Old 07-12-2015, 05:50 PM   #61
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1996 25' Excella
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We bought a '96 25' Excella and paid the same price as our friends paid for a brand new 27 foot lightweight with slide. Their trailer is beautiful and very comfortable with the modern layout. Our trailer is now some 25 years old but I expect it will still be on the road in another 25 yrs, while our friends' trailer will likely be rotting in a field in upper Michigan at that time. Our gas mileage with the AS is much better than our friends SOB with essentially the same TV.

For me that is 'nuff said!

JCW
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Old 07-12-2015, 05:59 PM   #62
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Owned several stick and staple wonders before we settled with our 72 Overlander.. The last SOB was a 5th wheel that pulled like it did not have any wheels under it. The square shape along with it standing 3 feet off the ground and way above our TV was just a large sail holding us back all the time. Started to have siding pulling loose after a day on the road and figured out after the 3rd time I re installed it that the walls were bellowing out while on the hiway due to air pressure flexing the walls. After replacing 1/3 of all the wood in the campers frame due to dry rot,, all I could think about was rivets and alum... Like my great uncle use to say about his 1958 A$,, "if it had wings it could fly"...
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Old 07-12-2015, 06:17 PM   #63
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1974 29' Ambassador
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Having recently made the plunge by buying my very first TT, I can say I have enjoyed reading this thread. Like some of you, I never considered anything other than an AS, but I have looked around at other brands as part of my research. I found my 87 Sovereign 29 ft on Airstreamclassifieds and drove from Maine to Maryland to see it, and bought it that day. Long-story-short, I am sitting in it now and I marvel at how fully intact and functioning everything is. This trailer is in excellent shape, inside and out. So the previous owners took good care of it, but they had something solid to work with because it is an AS. My two-cent's worth isn't as valuable as the full timers in previous posts, but my husband and I are heading out on the road this fall with confidence. Not sure I would be feeling that emotion in any other 87 TT.
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Old 07-12-2015, 06:24 PM   #64
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Our case for A/S is 48 years traveling between my aunt & uncle and me & my family with almost no repair..... Maintenance?.... Yes and since axles are original, are now past due for replacement. After 30 years, orig furnace gave way to one that lights itself, hot water heater leaked & was replaced with a gas/Elect unit that also lights itself. Beleive it or not, the Dometic refer is original having been carefully maintained and serviced using A/S instructions. I almost forgot we are on our 3rd toilet but not to blame A/S. My uncle (original owner) broke the original ceramic bowl and the second one just wore out last year.
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Old 07-12-2015, 06:43 PM   #65
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"I would not classify an Airstream as a four season trailer. If that is important to you then I would look at something less expensive and more toward that usage."

I'm not sure that any RV is really a four-season coach. DRV makes a big deal about their 3.5" walls, but then they cut big holes in them for slides and think a rubber bladder is enough insulation. Full-timers can go to where the temperature is more comfortable, and vacationers can travel when the temperature suits the coach.

"I still wonder about the motorhome as my father also pushes that point of convenience versus the "extra work" he says." A MH (especially a DP with airbags) is a really convenient way to travel. When I arrive at a campsite I get situated on the pad, then leave the Detroit running while I plug in the power cord. By the time I have that done the turbo has cooled down and the mercury in the leveling sensor has come back together. I then hit the auto level button and the coach is soon level. No boards, jacks, etc. The interior of the coach is at a comfortable temperature. The downside is that a MH needs to be driven regularly, which is a problem if you are parked for five months like we were. Add to that the possibility of some really high repair bills and we're thinking about an Airstream.
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Old 07-12-2015, 07:29 PM   #66
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To me, no brainer. You ask, will it last decades? We recently bought a '72 soverign. Our thinking, I cringe at the thought of a 43 year old traditional trailer. Our AS is like a house. Folks think nothing of buying a 43 year old house, but a travel trailer? Yes, when it's an AS. Every dollar we put into it is value we're adding to it. AS's simply don't depreciate. As opposed to just about every other trailer (or boat) out there.
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Old 07-12-2015, 09:25 PM   #67
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"Hello all, looking to get some thoughts on AS versus the competition."

There's competition?
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Old 07-12-2015, 10:09 PM   #68
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I looked at a DRV Elite. The build wasn't any better, maybe a bit worse on the cabinets compared to the 2015 Classic. But I realized that it would need a dually 1 ton at a minimum. Lots of folks use MHT's or buy a used tractor like a Volvo and have it converted to tow the 5th Elite. Pretty heavy unit as I recall, both on the tongue and overall weight.
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Old 07-13-2015, 12:08 AM   #69
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We have a 1963 Trade Wind we bought 7 years ago. We had P&S polish it, and restored it to look and function as good (or better with modern mechanicals) as new. We have traveled to all the contingent United States in the last 5 years.
I bought it because I grew up traveling in an Airstream with my parents. In fact, my Dad had 10 different Airstreams during his life, and his 1962 which was just like the floorpan of my '63, was my favorite.

The look is iconic. We get many nice comments as we travel. Just like Wally, we are travelers - not campers. Most nice Rv Resorts have a 10 yer rule. We have stayed in many across the country and have never been turned away even though ou AS is now 52 years old. Most can't believe it can possibly be that old.

Several times the nice folks in million dollar Prevosts have asked if they could look in our little Airstream. Even though aluminum is not magnetic, our Airstream certainly acts like a magnet to attract nice folks who are curious about this American icon. It is a great conversation starter.
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Old 07-13-2015, 09:00 AM   #70
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Ditto to everything already stated.
I always wanted an Airstream. I tried a white box trailer to try to not spend the money for an Airstream. It didn't work. I still bought an Airstream. Should have just bought an Airstream to begin with.
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