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Old 10-07-2016, 05:54 PM   #43
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2008 34' Classic S/O
1967 22' Safari
2005 30' Classic
Rockport , Texas
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We currently have an ‘08 34’ Classic with slide and absolutely love it! We started with a new 23’ International, then a new 30’ Classic... then a vintage 27’ International, and a ’67 22’ Safari... All have their good points but for us, the 34’ for extended trips (6+ mos.), is ideal, esp. for boon docking with solar & larger holding tanks. It is actually easier to tow and manuever than the 22 & 23’ and has a better lay out than the 27 & 30’ (IMHO). We’re looking to take out the dinette from the slide out and building in some storage for my instruments and Kim’s art tools/supplies. This is the first AS we’ve had where we can actually work on projects inside during inclement weather or late into the night...

At some point, we may get a vintage 22’ for short weekenders & vintage rallies but for fulltiming/extended trips, we’ll keep the 34’. So far, we haven’t had any issues with state, COE or federal parks...
.
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Old 10-07-2016, 06:21 PM   #44
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1973 31' Excella 500
Calgary , Alberta
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We like ours this size. It started as 31 and now it's 25. Perfect for the 2 of us.
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Old 10-07-2016, 11:30 PM   #45
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2016 30' Classic
Santa Rosa , California
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We went from a 2015 20ft Flying Cloud to a 2016 30ft Classic. After 10,000 miles with the 20 footer, we were feeling too cramped. The Classic is way more comfortable for our old bodies.

From a towing perspective:
Having never towed anything before, it took me much more time to get used to towing the 20 footer. I quickly became comfortable towing and manuevering the 30 foot Classic. A backup camera is a huge benefit on the highway, and when backing up.

We tend to wait until the last minute to reserve campsites, so for the few times we can't find a spot within a state or national park for our Classic, we stay outside the SP/NP at a reasonably close private/independent campground.

For us, comfort trumps accessibility. IMHO, if you will be spending 6 months or more per year in your AS, 25 ft would be the minimum length I'd consider. The '25ft and over' models are also wider than the 'under 25ft' AS models. The extra width really makes a difference.
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Old 10-07-2016, 11:54 PM   #46
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It depends on how you use your trailer.

If you are going to use it like a second home, get a big one.

If you are going on road trips, or are just going to sleep in it, get a smaller one
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Old 10-08-2016, 12:25 AM   #47
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1972 31' Sovereign
1975 31' Excella 500
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Benton , Arkansas
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I wish my 31' were 34'.


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Old 10-08-2016, 05:18 AM   #48
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2000 30' Excella
2014 30' Classic
Princeton , Iowa
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We had 2 30' Classics and went to a 26U FC. We love it. we did not use the table. You will find out that a lot of National Parks (right now) do not have many sites for 30 foot trailer. We do not miss the extra room, but enjoy the ability to get around and fit into more campsites.
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Old 10-08-2016, 06:44 AM   #49
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2006 22' Interstate
League City , Texas
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Something to perhaps consider in view of this question is, how do you spend your "down time" in your stick and brick house? The answer for me, my husband, and our 50-pound dog is, all packed into about an 8 square foot area on (us) and beside (dog) our couch. Partly for this reason, we knew we wanted to go smaller - our typical resting configuration is basically touching each other so we tend not to feel like we "need space". We bought an Airstream Interstate 22-foot model upon which we placed this custom hitch carrier that we built for carrying a cooler and outdoor equipment; it extends the total effective length to about 23.5 feet. It has never felt too small to us, but it's not for everyone.
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Old 10-08-2016, 07:20 AM   #50
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2004 25' Safari
South Hero , Vermont
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We have a 2004 25" Safari SS. So gaucho and separate dinette, but the corner bed. We live in our open concept house either at the kitchen island, on the couch with our dog or in bed. The 25 SS meets these needs. But.....we just wish that it didn't have that corner bed. It's fine once you're in it, but since I'm a 62 year old male who sleeps on the left and has to pee in the middle of the night, we are considering a 28 or 30 to get a walk around queen.


On an island in Vermont
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Old 10-08-2016, 08:43 AM   #51
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2012 16' International
Jamestown , Rhode Island
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Ok,
I will weigh in here.
So much of how you live on a day to day basis and your use of the trailer will determine your preference. My wife and I are pretty active. We walk, pedal, kayak, run (her) and generally move all of the time. We live outside the trailer as much as possible. We almost never go to private campgrounds and just love being outside.

We have an International series 16' Bambi. It is a perfect size! We love exploring while towing, stoping for lunch or dinner at a special place and generally just poking around with our Bambi behind us. The diminutive size of the trailer makes parking pretty effortless. It is easy to find fun places to stop that would be much more difficult in a larger trailer. For us it is all about being mobile and free to act on a whim. Speaking of acting on a whim, what size trailer do you think is most likely to find a site at the last second? We often find a "little" campsite that is simply too small for larger trailers so it is still available, happens all the time. We've even had "tent" sites that we can slip into.

We've been out for 2 months at a time and we feel no compelling need for a larger trailer. Yes, the space is small but it is really great space. One of the reasons we own such a seemingly ridiculous truck is that because the Bambi is so small, we need a place for all of our "stuff". I'm sure that if we owned one, much of what goes into the bed of the truck might be coaxed into the larger trailer. Of course, now that I've driven our new Ram 2500 10,000 miles, I'm certain that I would simply own one anyway...

Finally, in the interest of being fair, we believe that if we ever wanted a different Airstream, it would be a 25' model. We love seeing out of each end of the trailer and We aren't aware of any models between 16' and 25' without something obstructing the view out of the back.

In a perfect (fantasy?) world, I might consider a 19' model with an interior based on our 16', with wrap around windows, a larger fridge and maybe a little more room in the head compartment. That would be ideal if probably a little too heavy for a single axel unit.

For the time being, we love our 16' Serenity have no desire to move to any other unit.
Bruce
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Old 10-08-2016, 10:02 AM   #52
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1972 23' Safari
Arlington , Massachusetts
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The most important thing to think about is how you expect to use it and what you couldn’t live without. Buy the smallest trailer that has all the important features that you must have and don’t get caught up in adding space and features that you don’t really need. The fantasy that manufactures sell is unfettered travel to bucket list destinations, parking your trailer in that secluded, beautiful spot overlooking the beach, hiking and swimming by day, grilling and eating outdoors by a campfire at night. The reality, in my experience, is that people end up buying a trailers with a lot of room and features, take trips less than 200 miles from home and then park cheek to joule in an RV campground with a pool with a lot of other 40-50’ rigs. They pull through, hook up, turn on the AC and the TV and never go out of the trailer except to walk the dog.
Yes, there are some public campgrounds that have 40 ft. pull through, full hook up spots but you have a lot more choices and flexibility if can back in your 22 ft. trailer and dry camp for a few days.
We knew that we wanted to take month long trips, 2-4,000 miles, mostly camping in public campgrounds. We had no plans of full timing. Our primary concern was efficiency, safety and ease of towing. Just about any Airstream will give you that. We wanted double axel which I believe you only get on trailers over 20’. We also wanted a Queen bed, toilet, enough storage for hiking/biking gear, 3-7 days of food and an assortment of outdoor clothing and footwear. We needed a good sized fresh water, grey and black water tanks so that we could dry camp comfortably for 3-4 days. We also thought we needed heat and AC. As it turns out, we’ve used the heat a lot more than the AC but every once in a while it’s really nice to have the AC
We ended up restoring a 23’, 1972 Safari twin (no grey water but huge fresh). We replaced the beds with a fold out queen with drawers underneath on both sides and added storage cabinets. The PO had redone the bath without a shower and frankly, we haven’t missed it much. Almost all public campgrounds have a hot shower facility and if not, we don’t mind using baby wipes and a facecloth for a couple of days. After the first year, we added a grey water tank (made things much easier) and outdoor shower (for those campgrounds without a hot shower facility). There are only 2 of us, we don’t travel with pets and we are not especially tall or large. We are very comfortable with the amount of space. We like spending as much time as possible outside. When we are forced inside, the bed folds to a nice, comfortable couch and the dinette (another PO addition) gives both of us room to read, write draw and compute.
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Old 10-08-2016, 01:10 PM   #53
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2004 25' Safari
High Springs , Florida
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Whatever I have I'm always imagining the benefits of something bigger and something smaller. It's all a trade off. We've traveled extensively in a 30' fifth wheel and enjoyed the heck out of the accommodation. We have seriously toyed with the idea of getting a 34' to 40' class a to live in. Currently we have a 25 Airstream Safari. We also consider going tear drop and a four wheel mid sized pickup. We were lucky to acquire a 25' with twin recliners in it so it seems to suit our lifestyle much better than our last 25 with the couch. I have yet to find a couch in any RV that I found comfortable. The 25' is a little light on interior accommodations but we expand to the patio when conditions permit. The 25' is certainly lacking in carry capacity for "stuff", but any Airstream is NCC challenged. We load up the one ton truck bed with all the weighty stuff we like to have along and try to keep what we haul/store in the actual Airstream to a minimum. It works for us for now. But we have a home base with a 2.5 month window between mandatory doctor visits. I like to hit the road and explore. Six hundred mile days are not unusual when we want to get somewhere. After the 15,000#, 12' 6" tall fifth wheel, towing the 25' Airstream is a joy indeed. Dirt roads, narrow streets, rush hour traffic, parking lots, no longer something to fear. Diesel stops have much less trepidation. I am thrilled with what the 25' presents in travel opportunities but I'm sure the quest for something new and different will make me change again. But I've got 25 or 30 thousand miles to put on this one before it's off to something new. Unless a 30' Classic presents itself then I might change a little earlier than expected.
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Old 10-08-2016, 01:58 PM   #54
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1959 26' Overlander
Western , Massachusetts
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We find that our 26' Overlander is plenty of room for our 2-3 month annual escapes from Massachusetts winters. Our first two trips out West were in a 17' Caravel, which was fine when staying active in good weather. Two weeks of poor weather convinced us that too small a trailer was a phone booth.

We would not consider going larger for our local trips -- the 26 footer is the absolute maximum we could use for trips to our favorite spots in Vermont. I remember my early research showing that 24 feet is max for some of the state parks locally -- we get by with the extra 2 feet. We couldn't do some of the local camping we love with a 30 footer.

If you find yourself in the 5 college area in western Mass, PM me if you want a tour.
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Old 10-08-2016, 06:28 PM   #55
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2012 19' International
Southeastern MI , Michigan
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We just got a 19'. Wishing for a 23' or 25'.
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Old 10-08-2016, 07:13 PM   #56
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2013 30' International
Anna Maria , Florida
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DPRoberts View Post
I hope the OP doesn't mind this follow-up question, but the length behind the rear axles has been mentioned at least 3 times now as a problem to consider. Does anyone know where to find the overhang lengths for the various Airstreams?

I haven't found this distance mentioned anywhere, but it appears that the 30 has a longer overhang than other models - is that true?

The 27' / 28' models, as compared to their 25' equivalents, appear to have most of their extra length in front of the axles rather than behind them. Do they have the same overhang length?


And one last question, for Steve (since I follow your "The More We Explore" vlog on Youtube, as anyone who is interested in Airstreams should)... you sound happy with your 30, but you've said on your vlog that you're planning on downsizing. Is this simply because you expect the sites back east to be a lot smaller, or do you think it will make a difference in the western half of the country too?
In three years of runing with our 30' International I have yet to scrape or hang up on pavement with the rear frame. And I have a 2" receiver hanging below the bumper. So where all this concern is coming from I can't relate to it. I also have had the bad luck on having to turn around on some unpaved rural roads with ditches on both sides.
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