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Old 05-26-2015, 11:53 AM   #43
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My opinion is that camping in a trailer is a lot more work for the RVer when setting up and breaking camp. Also, hooking up to the TV is much more labor intensive compared to preparing a MH for the road. If one is staying in CG for weeks or months, I think a trailer is better because that very expensive engine & tranny aren't sitting idle. It is a lot easier to back a MH into a site than a trailer, particularly if one must back to the right. The real RV problem is that most SOB units are essentially junk.
However, the RV hobby is worth putting up with a lot of hassle, too bad that seems to be involved with using an RV.
I dream of more automation for trailers.
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Old 05-26-2015, 01:03 PM   #44
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If I ever get to the point that setting up in a site is too labor intensive for me, il quit camping. If I'm only staying one night I don't unhitch. All hookups pretty much are the same for trailer or mh, where's the extra labor? Backing to the right is only slightly more difficult with a trailer, but backing to the right in a mh also gives you visibility problems although not as severe. My opinion. Jim
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Old 05-26-2015, 01:13 PM   #45
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17mpg and 2 bedrooms with a bath and 1/2. The best of both worlds!
Nice solution!
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Old 05-26-2015, 01:16 PM   #46
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All hookups pretty much are the same for trailer or mh, where's the extra labor?
Hitching and hitching. Putting down the stabilizer jacks. Maybe leveling. Otherwise I don't see much difference. In my experience as an Interstate owner in a WBCCI Unit full of trailer owners, I can set up more quickly than they can, but nothing they do requires any more muscle power than what I do.
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Old 05-26-2015, 01:18 PM   #47
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As a potential AS buyer, I agree that the cost difference between AS and other brands is significant.

I also noticed that the build quality is also significant. Is it twice as better made? Three times better? Not sure. But for sure an AS is built to last a long time. A lot longer than your typical $20K TT.

I think we are dealing with two different topics here. A TT vs. a MH is one topic. MHs are obviously more expensive than similar TTs since they have an engine and all that entails. But I think the original topic was about the high cost of an AS TT. I've been looking at TTs for a while, and for half the cost of an AS I can get a lot more TT from another brand. But the build quality difference is significant.
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Old 05-26-2015, 01:53 PM   #48
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But I think the original topic was about the high cost of an AS TT. I've been looking at TTs for a while, and for half the cost of an AS I can get a lot more TT from another brand. But the build quality difference is significant.
There is a concept called "life cycle cost."

Basically, don't look at purchase price. Look at total cost over a period of time. How long do you plan to be an RV camper? Five years? Twenty years? More?

If you're already in your sixties and don't expect to be camping for more than about fifteen years before you're too old and feeble, an SOB may be more bang for the bucks. Or at least the same bang for fewer bucks. By the time you're worn out, the trailer will be worn out too, so no great loss.

But if you're still in your forties and have another thirty years or more of camping in your future, the more expensive Airstream becomes much more viable. You'll only have to buy one Airstream, and then keep up with repairs, but at the end of thirty years it will still have substantial value as a vintage trailer, even if you bought brand new.

But with the typical SOB, fifteen years down the pike when it has no trade-in value to speak of, you'll be faced with buying a whole new trailer if you want to keep camping, and at the end of thirty years, you've got nothing to show for it because the second one is worn out as well.

For a life cycle of thirty years or more, the Airstream is actually the less expensive way to go. One Airstream versus two SOBs is a no-brainer.
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Old 05-26-2015, 01:56 PM   #49
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I have heard a diesel bus has 8 different filters-
An Airstream may or may not be 2 times better than an sob, but 1 overpriced Airstream still costs less than the 3 sob trailers you would buy over the time period 1 Airstream will last. When a wood frame travel trailer rots, it's game over. When a fiberglass sided travel trailer delaminates it's game over. When a rubber membrane roof rots, it's game over. Airstreams have none of these.


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Old 05-26-2015, 03:30 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by Protagonist View Post
There is a concept called "life cycle cost."

Basically, don't look at purchase price. Look at total cost over a period of time. How long do you plan to be an RV camper? Five years? Twenty years? More?

If you're already in your sixties and don't expect to be camping for more than about fifteen years before you're too old and feeble, an SOB may be more bang for the bucks. Or at least the same bang for fewer bucks. By the time you're worn out, the trailer will be worn out too, so no great loss.

But if you're still in your forties and have another thirty years or more of camping in your future, the more expensive Airstream becomes much more viable. You'll only have to buy one Airstream, and then keep up with repairs, but at the end of thirty years it will still have substantial value as a vintage trailer, even if you bought brand new.

But with the typical SOB, fifteen years down the pike when it has no trade-in value to speak of, you'll be faced with buying a whole new trailer if you want to keep camping, and at the end of thirty years, you've got nothing to show for it because the second one is worn out as well.

For a life cycle of thirty years or more, the Airstream is actually the less expensive way to go. One Airstream versus two SOBs is a no-brainer.
So our Airstream should pay for itself by the time we are in our 60's.
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Old 05-26-2015, 04:07 PM   #51
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I'm a firm believer in the cry once mentality. I'd rather buy something of high quality (within reason) and enjoy it, then be riddled with problems because I purchased something of questionable quality.

The SOB's that I've seen advertised are priced around $15-20,000. They have a life expectancy of 10-15 years? And, would sell at a substantial discount from the purchased price after a few years. Plus, they show their age.

I'm guessing that one could purchase a new Airstream in the 65-75k range and financed over 20 years. The payment would end up being about double the SOB, but the level of quality and the resale value would far exceed that of the SOB. Plus, it would put a smile on my face every time I heard the door close.
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Old 05-26-2015, 04:12 PM   #52
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....and Airstreams are just plain cool
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Old 05-26-2015, 04:14 PM   #53
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Actually Bold, if you factor in recent price increases in the past few years you're already ahead of the game. Every time new model years are announced with those modest $ increases that gives earlier Airstreams more stability in the market place because depreciation gets put on hold. The new ones being more expensive each year put the breaks on your diminished value.
That principal does not apply to most other RV's because they are made with a shelf life, same as an automobile, 15 or 20 years & they're in the bone yard, unless they become a classic like the GMC motor home of the 70's.
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Old 05-26-2015, 04:24 PM   #54
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Actually Bold, if you factor in recent price increases in the past few years you're already ahead of the game. Every time new model years are announced with those modest $ increases that gives earlier Airstreams more stability in the market place because depreciation gets put on hold. The new ones being more expensive each year put the breaks on your diminished value.
That principal does not apply to most other RV's because they are made with a shelf life, same as an automobile, 15 or 20 years & they're in the bone yard, unless they become a classic like the GMC motor home of the 70's.
x2 on that thought.

I also feel more like rewarding a company like Airstream with my money VS some other manufacturers that treat their customers poorly. I would prefer airstream stay in business, and be there for me when I need them.
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Old 05-26-2015, 04:25 PM   #55
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I am ALMOST now age 32..wife is 32...we have 2 kids age 2 and 4.

We 3-4 years ago began wanting some sort of RV.

We are nearly 2 years into our brand new bunkhouse purchase. We could not be happier so far!

After reading on this site EXTENSIVELY, and posting extensively, as well as reading extensively on rv.net, and looking at various RV's on RV sales lots of different kinds, considering our budget and long term goals of travel, this was we think a perfect fit. The cost up front was high for us, but as far as we can tell, we can conceivably use this AS through our working years and well beyond and it is a retirement vessel. We have zero buyers remorse so far.

I liked the 5th wheels, and sure enough, I have heard a few people say "with that much you could have bought a 5th wheel"....but alas, we simply just did not like the look of a 5th wheel...just seemed too big for us....just did not feel right at all...and still it doesn't.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f161...el-107177.html

Our AS sits in our backyard, it serves as extra sleeping for guests now, making our 3 bedroom house be a 5 bedroom house when it needs to be (we no longer have plans for any expansion or any desire to own a lake/beach/vacation property). And as it sits back there, it is visually attractive....and that was a big deal for us...so many travel trailers look like bothersome things parked back there...ours is not really in public view much, but the AS sitting next to our flagstone patio back there has appeal. My sister is an interior designer, works in DC, and she agreed, she loves it as well, and she and her two daughters are meeting us at the beach in 3 weeks!

No slides? When we looked at the units with slides, we were impressed, but man, otherwise we were often so unimpressed by the rest....when sitting in our big AS bunkhouse trying it out, and considering what its intended uses were, we thought lacking slides was not a big deal really...and now with almost 2 years of travels in it, I never feel an urge that the wall would move out 20 inches....
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Old 05-26-2015, 05:37 PM   #56
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Well as someone who's been so happy to upsize to a Diesel Pusher (and honestly I can't ever see myself downsizing....but NEVER say NEVER) I'm amazed every time I get into my '00 XC diesel at the quality compared to my SOB (mainly Fleetwoods) of the past. I just hope and pray AS beings back their full size class A's. Yes Airstreams are expensive to say the least, but I truly believe that every model line (sadly except for the Sports) are worth the price.
I've enjoyed being a member of the AS family but it's looking like I'll be joining the Newell Coach family soon. My parents have a new one on order and I'm going to buy either theirs or this other one I've been eying. Both 45' quad slides. The works. And good God if I'm not infatuated with a true flat in flat out slide.

HOWEVER!! So. My friends just bought an Interstate and I always thought class B's were ridiculous for any trip over 2 nights and only if you plan on eating out every night (which I do most nights on vacation anyways and grill out in the XC once or twice since I can't cook anyways). The funny thing is I've been doing a LOT of research on class B's. Mainly the Interatete and the Winne Era 70C (with slide) and Leisure Vans products. The funny thing is that cost wise I'll be paying exactly the same for a brand new Interstate as a used Newell. I'm torn.
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