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Old 09-18-2016, 09:28 PM   #15
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1999 34' Excella
Currently Looking...
Hillsboro , Texas
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 6,054
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AS ... All RVs have issues. If you want zero issues, it ain't gonna happen.

Hey, we bought our 1999 in 2013 from second owner. It had unaddressed issues that we fixed. Yes, a 1999! Yes there were problems! Needed new axles, tires, add AC #2, upgraded to 50Amp and built in Surge protector, replaced skylights, window seals... Normal maintenance, just not addressed as we like. The WD and sway control was upgraded to a projected point made towing this 34' home safer.

This summer We made a 3000 mile trip with zero issues... We did not go faster than 62 and only 70 a couple of brief moments to avoid traffic conflict. We do not pull it like an 18 wheeler .. They consistently passed us. And SOB RV's blew our doors off.... And we caught up to them at next fuel stop 😜

We had one RV Corps of Engineers park with lousy electricity. Rest went fine.

Now, there is a AS dealer who offers "lifetime" warranty here in central Texas. You may have to get them to do all repairs..I don't know. May require yearly "Check" for maintaining the "lifetime" coverage. If you buy several states away, you will still need to travel there for the warranty. So, buying where I get a long warranty will give me a reason to travel to the dealer.. A road trip is always "required"...

Hey, it may be a pipe dream... But ya gotta do what feels best for you.

Personally, I have seen 8 year old SOBs (some other brand) which are derelicts. At 17 years ours is still clicking. Water leaks? Yes.. Even houses develop leaks.. Do doors loosen? Yes even our home has loose ones occasionally. Do home depreciate? Yes.

and... Houses are not subjected to the signifant abuse of towing. RVs live outside mostly, but you can't replace the roof on the AS. I have helped replace a roof on an SOB... The roof subframe was trashed. The Airstreams, you reseal. Slide outs??? A great sale feature.. But on most it could be a weakened area...that was a short lived "feature" AS tried. They do give more room... And all SOBs I have seen there are "issues" with leaks and other . For some it is worth the depreciation, the headache.

If you are familiar with Marine things like boats, barges, jet ski.. Those are well known money pits. But the point is, they are "MarineRVs"!!!!! They require far more attention than our AS.... But, I can sleep, travel, get out of the weather, be comfy with AC , Heat, hot shower... Hot non-soggy burgers... And... And... My wife has a restroom wherever we travel.... Some Boats can do all that... But much more costly than a new AS... And more costly maintenance than AS IMHO.

Now, if i were capable of affording "new" there would be special requirements... Yes, a special build..

We hate the "modern" interiors. So that would be a big difference for my wife.

I would like:
- observe the build and question items I don't understand
- additional buck rivets on exterior.
- Maxim skylights
- 50 amp power connector with AC supply having a built in surge/ power protection. (should be standard).. IMHO
- marine grade or better appliances like microwave, fridge (new compressor style) and DC powered, DC solar charging and battery banks
- better stove vent
- the fit and finish would be resolved before accepting
- epoxy impregnated plywood floor
- Bus Kote roof coating replacing the standard "painted" roof.
- built in moisture detection at various, proven "leak" locations
- drain points in the main lower channel where walls attach.. (Regular location where leaks occur often.. This would minimize water intrusion, wood flooring rot, mold, etc. )
- automatic "level" (at least an automatic gauge)
- under chassis lighting (LED marine grade)
- split system AC for and aft
- kitchen and other drawer locking capability
- pixie dust stash

Now, in all fairness, Airstream, like SOB builders, merely assemble their product with pieces and parts and assemblies from all sorts of "providers". AS has said so. Can they demand better quality, better design specific to AS requirements? Sure .. For a slight "uplift" in cost.

If they could put all that in a new 34' they will get me to look.

In closing, they ain't perfect... But you will be able to enjoy for a long time.

P.S. More RV parks are limiting RV guests to an age of 10years or less. Pictures I have sent to the Park have always been approved .. And we are way past their time limit. We also include inside pics for fun and when we arrive we give the park host a tour... Always leave friends... Some even say "Wow, I did not realize these could still look this good!!

Hope you join up... But keep eyes wide open and challenge the "they all do that" excuse.

Peace and Blessings..
WBCCI# 30676
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Old 09-19-2016, 05:47 AM   #16
Rivet Master
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Gainesville , Florida
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 6,793
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Many of the problems owners have could be eliminated with on time maintenance. Just looking over, under, or into the AS every so often can find loose, out of adjustment, crooked items. These can be handled then before damage is done. Check exterior when new and then recheck often for irregularities that show up. Fix them then, usually a tightening or app of a sealant, before damage is done. Preventative maintenance is the utmost important thing to do, and it can be fun when you really get to know your cabin on wheels. Do upgrades as needed. Read the forums for things to check, don't overreact to others reports, all our experiences are different. Enjoy the ownership.

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Old 09-19-2016, 07:13 AM   #17
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1986 34' Limited
1975 27' Overlander
Conifer , Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 3,720
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We've discussed Airstream apparent "lemons", new trailer quality problems, disappointments, and then the general feeling Airstream trailers are built better than some other brands.

I found Airstream Life's book on Airstream maintenance really quite good and recommend it to those of us who want to do a good inspection of their trailer from time to time. You can learn how to adjust and repair various system on your trailer before they become a significant problem.

Here is the link:

Many of us know filiform corrosion is a problem on Airstreams since about year 2000. There is no doubt the new coating and thicker aluminum are significant build improvements over the old process. But the aluminum edges are not coated, and moisture can encroach under the coating forming the "white worm" corrosion marks. This is a cosmetic issue, not a structural issue. There are simple maintenance techniques than can greatly reduce the chances of this happening. AirForum members shared these maintenance techniques. We can complain, or we can take action to prevent. I like the latter.

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Old 09-19-2016, 08:07 AM   #18
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2013 31' Classic
billings , Montana
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 2,032
I bought my 31' classic sight unseen and went across the country to get it, been good and no problems...
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Old 09-19-2016, 11:30 AM   #19
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2016 30' Classic
Gilbert , Arizona
Join Date: Jan 2016
Posts: 20
We bought a new 2016 Classic about six months ago. We have had a few minor issues, with only one that will need to be covered under warranty. A handful of other issues were simple, quick fixes. We are 'full-timers' and travel on the weekends as much as possible. There are always going to be issues with any new purchase. For example, my daughter just moved into a new home they had built by a reputable builder and they have quite a few items on their post-move in punch list. My advice is to buy from a reputable dealer, expect a few niggling things you will need to address (most of which you will fix yourself) and move forward. We love our Airstream, and the longer we live in it, and the better we get to know it, the more we enjoy it.
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Old 09-19-2016, 11:49 AM   #20
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2013 30' Classic
Greenwood , Mississippi
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 12,103
I have had and still have problems with my trailer, but none of the problems have hindered me from traveling or camping.
Even now I need propane pigtail connectors. One side was leaking. They have been ordered.
One of my low point drain valves is leaking. This will have to wit till I get it to a dealer or Jackson Center or until I get the courage to cut a hole in the bottom of my trailer and I have a piece of aluminum, rivets, and a rivet gun to make a patch after the repair is done.
2013 Classic 30 Limited
2007 Silver Toyota Tundra Crew Max Limited 5.7 iForce
2006 Vivid Black Harley-Davidson Road King Classic
1999 Black Nissan Pathfinder LE
TAC #MS-10
WBCCI #1811, Region 6, Unit 56
Airforums #70955
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Old 09-19-2016, 12:00 PM   #21
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2015 25' Flying Cloud
2016 30' Flying Cloud
Blenheim Ontario , Ontario
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 1,264
I'm on my fourth RV Trailer now and all four of them have workmanship issues.
So called 'American Workmanship' ain't what it used to be and nothing to brag about.
Your workers need to learn from Japanese and other Asians, who years ago learned from YOU!
Having said that; AS warranties are good, and in my 'neck of the woods' CanAm is absolutely super at treating the customer right.
My current FC came from the factory pretty good , with only a couple of minor snags that CanAm addressed to my satisfaction
(I'm a retired aircraft tech.)
Don't expect American products to meet the Asians standards. Just accept That the dealers are there to keep you on the road and happy.
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Old 09-19-2016, 12:00 PM   #22
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2016 27' Flying Cloud
Woodinville , Washington
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 402
We're in the Seattle area & drove our 2015 Forest River 32 ft 5th wheel to Los Banos, CA, to trade it in on a 2016 AS 27 FB at Toscano RV, which had given us the best price both on the AS & on the trade-in among a dozen+ AS dealers throughout the US. We arrived on a Friday & turned over the 5th wheel to them. They offered to let us stay in the AS over the weekend. On Monday, they went through the walk-through of the AS. We mentioned several issues to fix. They fixed them without problems. We drove the AS back home. (Way to go, Toscano!!!)

Recently, we returned from a 9K mile, 6 week trip to the WV rally. Somewhere in the Wisconsin/Michigan area, we lost brakes in two of our four AS wheels. We drove to the AS dealer in Anoka, MN, outside of Minneapolis (Shorewood RV). They replaced both brakes in approximately 6 hrs at no charge. (Way to go, Shorewood!!!)

Hey, stuff happens. So far with us, it is happening less often with our AS, & when it does happen, it gets fixed with an absence of fuss.
Alta & Richard, Seattle area --- WBCCI 8873
"Aurum": 2018 Ram/Cummins 3500
"Argentum": 2016 AS FC 27 FB
"BigDog": M Harlequin Great Dane, 150 lb
WL7Z --- NAUI --- WSBA
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Old 09-19-2016, 12:03 PM   #23
2 Rivet Member
san jose , California
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 50
Go for it

I'd say don't rule out a used AS that has been sorted out already. Best bang for your buck. I too was in the same boat as you, and 100% needed panoramic windows in the back as most places with a view are back-in spots. New didn't provide what used did and the issues inherent to AS were sorted out already.

Good luck, a lot of options out there.
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Old 09-19-2016, 12:13 PM   #24
2 Rivet Member
2003 30' Classic
Fresno , California
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 68
If you think Airstream has problems....

My wife and I have owned four other RV's and can tell you from experience out 2003 Classic 30' is far better than any brand new RV out there. Sure you will possibly have a problem or two....but our last trailer was a 2015 Keystone Bullett Premier and it nearly fell apart on a 2000 mile trip. The fact that everyone seems to be screaming about poor quality in Airstreams tells me they never owned any other RV. If they had they would be much more thankful and feel blessed to have an Airstream. Some people just can't be satisfied no matter how reliable the trailer is. It is my sincerest hope that anyone reading the posts of the complainers will consider that some people just like to complain...I did till I bought an there is no need...
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Old 09-19-2016, 12:15 PM   #25
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2016 27' Flying Cloud
Woodinville , Washington
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 402
m.hony wrote: "Even now I need propane pigtail connectors. One side was leaking. They have been ordered."

At the WV rally, my "next door" neighbor told me that he smelled propane coming from my propane bottles. The soap bubble test confirmed that there were numerous pinhole leaks in one of my propane pigtails. I disconnected it, & when we went to Jackson Center thereafter to get the "grand AS tour," I told one of their guys about the leaky pigtail, which I gave to him. He told me he didn't have one in stock but would ship one to me.

Voila: UPS delivered to me an entire new, two-pigtail & regulator device within a couple of weeks. No charge, courtesy of AS, Jackson Center. (Way to go, AS & its warranty.)

Stuff happens. That's unavoidable. When it does, so far AS has fixed it, promptly & without question or charge. I'm impressed.
Alta & Richard, Seattle area --- WBCCI 8873
"Aurum": 2018 Ram/Cummins 3500
"Argentum": 2016 AS FC 27 FB
"BigDog": M Harlequin Great Dane, 150 lb
WL7Z --- NAUI --- WSBA
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Old 09-19-2016, 12:19 PM   #26
2 Rivet Member
2003 30' Classic
Fresno , California
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 68
Hey...I think my wife and I met you at Toscano when you picked your trailer up. We were the people who were picking up the 2003 Classic 30' right next to yours. You were gracious in allowing us to tour your new baby and may I is beautiful....Great to see you are putting it on the road...Stay safe and look for us on the road.
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Old 09-19-2016, 12:35 PM   #27
New Owner 😊
2017 25' Flying Cloud
Cary , North Carolina
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 15
Campathy!!! Why couldn't I have come up with that? :-)

Thank you FoilinArnd for asking the questions you asked. This has been a very helpful thread! My husband and I are purchasing our very first AS on Thursday - 2017 25FB-Q Flying Cloud. I have loved being a part of this forum and learning from all of you. We are very excited to begin this new chapter. I have yet to come across anything on this forum that has not been 100% helpful.
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Old 09-19-2016, 12:52 PM   #28
1998 34' Excella 1000
1990 29' Airstream 290
Algonquin Highlands , Ontario
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 19
We looked at many manufacturers before deciding on AS. My husband worked in the aerospace industry. He understands aircraft construction and the stresses they must endure. AS is built with similar quality construction and the aerodynamic shape we were looking for. Our first was a 1990 29 ft Excella. We loved it and had no issues. The previous owner had had it for 20 yrs and it was well cared for. Unfortunately, travelling home to Canada from our winter in Texas we had an accident and the trailer was written off. Given the circumstances the trailer was actually still in very good shape after the accident. The police, emergency services personel and the tow truck drivers said they had never seen a trailer survive a flip on its side with so little damage. They said they usually just hosed the remaining pieces of other trailer brands off the highway after such an accident. The trailer could have been repaired but the costs to do so were much higher than the current value of the trailer so we had to give it up. We now have a 1998 34 ft Excella with a Hensley hitch and so far so good. We bought it from an AS dealer who gave us a 90 day warranty. They have fixed a few minor things but nothing major has occurred. We are looking forward to many years and many miles in this AS. Find a used AS trailer that has been well cared for and you should not have any problems. The only repairs will be as a result of use - as you would with any vehicle. AS will give you the value for your money that other brands won't. They are not built to last 20, 30+ years. Airstream is! Good Luck!

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