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Old 08-17-2014, 03:32 PM   #1
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Tyler , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 1
Upgrading an Egg to an AS

Hello, everyone!

I have been happily living full-time in a 17 ft Casita for the last few years. I'm in no hurry to change, but have recently started looking at a used Airstream as a possible upgrade.

My early research has narrowed down the possibilities. Anything smaller than 20 ft doesn't seem to offer a fundamental advantage over what I've already got. Yes, I'll (reluctantly) concede that a Bambi is bit nicer than a Casita, but the floor plans don't offer any huge improvement over my 17SD (Spirit 16' & 17' | Casita Travel Trailers - America's Favorite Lightweight Travel Trailers!)

On the upper end, anything longer than 26 ft seems to be overkill for just myself and my furry copilot (a Rough Collie). Even though I'd be living in it full-time, I don't want to limit parking possibilities and would prefer to tow with a half-ton pickup truck. So 21~26 ft seems to be the sweet spot for me.

The main upgrades I'd enjoy would be a front couch (with enough floor space to walk around the dog) and some usable kitchen counter and pantry space. I don't want twin beds, and the smallest trailer that fits those requirements would be preferable to a larger one.

Used or Vintage? While having a 50s model would be neat, I'm really after functional, "ready to live in" housing (I don't have a regular home to live in while working on a project trailer). I'd definitely want something new enough to have holding tanks, etc. Generally, it seems like 10~15 years old might get the price down to my budget.

Price? There's the problem (ain't it always?). I actually moved into my little fiberglass egg for financial reasons. I've been working for a Christian Bookstore for the last 17 years, and bookstores in general are not flourishing (mostly the economy, but Internet shopping and Kindles have not helped our sales). I wanted to live closer to where I work, didn't want another mortgage and wanted to be able to move easily if our store didn't make it. We are, thankfully, holding on so far. But this is not the time for me to be spending large amounts of money I don't have, or taking on extra monthly payments.

The ideal situation would be to do a close to even trade. I'd like to find an AS owner who is downsizing an older model, but would like to have a smaller and lighter trailer (Casita's can be towed by minivans and will fit in regular automotive parking spaces). Or perhaps someone trading up to a larger AS, but who would like a second, smaller trailer for weekend trips. But, while money is not on my side, time is. My Collie has gotten very good at scooting out of the way (well, actually, she's gotten very good at claiming ownership of my bed the moment I get up). So I'm in no hurry.

I think I need to start by doing some more research, so I'll know which models are suitable, and can figure out a realistic price range. Question: Can anyone point me to a guide showing which floor plans were available in different models over the years?

I'd be moving from a 3 year old trailer with no problems into a used trailer a lot older, so it seems like I would be smart to save up some cash reserves for repairs. No matter how honest the seller, or careful the Pre-buy inspection, I'd still be getting an unknown. Question: How much would you set aside for problems in a, say, 15 year old AS?

btw - One of the big reasons I selected a Casita is the support and knowledge of the wonderfully helpful folks at the "Casita Club" forum, which made the jump into living full-time in a tiny little trailer a lot easier. Discovering this forum is one of the major reasons for considering an AS as an upgrade. So let me say Thanks in advance for answering what I'm sure will be endless questions.

2011 Casita 17SD
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Old 09-03-2014, 02:14 PM   #2
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1986 25' Sovereign
Cincinnati , Ohio
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 96
Upgrading an Egg to an AS

Hi there

You can go to at the airstream site and go to the service tab and then to the document section and see all the various airstream floor plans.
Dood luck

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Old 09-03-2014, 03:01 PM   #3
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2008 25' Classic
Wichita Falls , Texas
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 4,273
We moved from a Casita 17SD to a 2008 Classic 25fb in 2013. The Casita sold within a month and we got a decent price. There is a cult following for these trailers so you shouldn't have much problem selling yours. I used the Casita Club classified.

We had to get a new tow vehicle to pull the Airstream. While we loved the Casita, it's simplicity and the ability to park it almost anywhere we decided a slightly larger trailer would be better for extended travels we hope to make in the near future. We looked at non Airstream trailers but didn't like slide outs that much nor the floor plans for the smaller sizes so we started thinking about a used Airstream.

We didn't want to get into major repairs or restoration so we looked at any models manufactured since 2000. We started at first a Flying Cloud 20. Front bed, side dinette, nice size kitchen and dry bath. The sleeping and eating area were similar to our Casita 17 SD, but with some differences that affect us. The front bed is only 48" wide compared to 54" on the Casita. Maybe not an issue with a solo traveler. The dinette is wider than the Casita which is better, the kitchen and bath much better. Closet space is about the same but more overheads than the Casita. The Casita has a bigger gray holding tank (32 gal) than the Airstream. In fact until you look at the Airstream 25' models the Casita's gray tank beats all the Bambi's and 23ft models. The 23fB has a 30gal so that is close enough. The FC 20 and Casita share the same sized fridge (4cu/ft). We decided the FC 20 wasn't a big enough upgrade.

The next AS we looked at was an International 23D. This has the front dinette with side gaucho and corner bed and bath, 5 cu/ft fridge, nice big closet. We weren't sure about the corner bed and the front living area plus it was new unit and wasn't sure about spending that much money. If the corner bed is OK with you I think a preowned 23C which has a front couch with a fold up table would be a good choice. The only downside is the gray holding tank is less than the Casita again, 21 gal vs 32. Kitchen counter space is maybe a little better than the Casita.

So when we found our 25fb we decided to purchase it. We wanted a 2 7 cu/ft door fridge and the holding tanks were larger than the Casita. It's 9 foot longer and required a new tow vehicle. We upgraded from a 2005 4Runner 4.7L V8 to a 2010 Tundra 5.7L V8. AS used to have a 25ft with a front couch and foldup table. Ours has the rear dinette and side couch. I think I would've preferred to have found a 25 with the front couch and side table. The dinette is useful for eating but not good for lounging. Other option is the 25SS. Front couch with a separate dinette and the rear corner bed/bath. We decided the rear corner bed and cramped bath wasn't for us so we looked at the 25fb.

It might be pretty hard to swap a Casita for an Airstream. It's hard enough to find a clean used AS without the hassles of trying to find a special arrangement. You'll get a ton more money if you sell the Casita yourself vs trading in at a dealer.

Good luck.

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Old 09-03-2014, 04:07 PM   #4
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2017 25' Flying Cloud
Denville , New Jersey
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Interesting story and reply. I am thinking possible move up, but so far no floorplan has been so much better it wod justify the extra $$$. I love what I have, just wish I could leave my table up all the time.
2006 Bambi CCD ("EireStream!!")
2010 Funfinder
2005 T@B
2001 Teardrop, Mountain Hardware Tent
For some perfection takes a little longer...
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