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Old 10-11-2016, 06:47 AM   #71
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1987 25' Sovereign
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We now have our 25' 87 Sovereign for sale. My wife has always preferred more compact cars and trailers. Sooo we have turned our tow vehicle into a mini motorhome by putting a Camp-lite 11' camper in the bed. Now we can tow our Ford C-max when we travel. The Camp-lite has no steel or wood in it so no ROT or RUST. The two big problems in most other RV's.
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Old 10-11-2016, 09:27 AM   #72
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Originally Posted by VaTravelers View Post
I have enjoyed this discussion. One thing I've noticed is not a lot of mention about the 28' International. It's 27' or 30'. Why is that?
Our first Airstream was a 2012 International, one day just for kicks I measured the outside length of the coach and it measured 27'. I was surprised and perturbed. I felt cheated. We visited our Airstream dealer just to look and measured a 30' coach and that measured 30', a full 3' longer. Looking at it closely we realized it had a lot more room and a very spacious lav in comparison.
We traded up within a month.
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Old 10-11-2016, 12:07 PM   #73
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We started with a 2013 25FB International Serenity. For many reasons, it was not the one for us. So we upped the ante to a 2014 31' Classic. That has become our summer home in the mountains and we tow it with a 2012 Ram 2500HD Cummins.

Then we acquired in addition to the Classic a 2015 23D International Serenity which we can tow with our 2007 Mercedes ML320 CDI diesel for short trips into any place we want to go.

We feel we have the best of both worlds, big for extended stays in a fixed location or long trips and short for shorter trips and tighter space fittings in older western parks.

Remember that Airstream sizes are measured from the front of the ball socket to the back of the bumper while everything else is measuring just the box size. So when calling into a spot, we say the 31' Classic is a 28' for comparison and the 23D is 20 feet long. And even those pseudo measurements would be long.
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Old 10-11-2016, 03:09 PM   #74
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1999 30' Excella 1000
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Originally Posted by switz View Post

Remember that Airstream sizes are measured from the front of the ball socket to the back of the bumper while everything else is measuring just the box size. So when calling into a spot, we say the 31' Classic is a 28' for comparison and the 23D is 20 feet long. And even those pseudo measurements would be long.
Thanks for letting me know this switz. My 30' will be called a 27' from now on for reservation purposes.
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Old 10-11-2016, 03:27 PM   #75
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Quote:
Originally Posted by switz View Post
We started with a 2013 25FB International Serenity. For many reasons, it was not the one for us. So we upped the ante to a 2014 31' Classic. That has become our summer home in the mountains and we tow it with a 2012 Ram 2500HD Cummins.

Then we acquired in addition to the Classic a 2015 23D International Serenity which we can tow with our 2007 Mercedes ML320 CDI diesel for short trips into any place we want to go.

We feel we have the best of both worlds, big for extended stays in a fixed location or long trips and short for shorter trips and tighter space fittings in older western parks.

Remember that Airstream sizes are measured from the front of the ball socket to the back of the bumper while everything else is measuring just the box size. So when calling into a spot, we say the 31' Classic is a 28' for comparison and the 23D is 20 feet long. And even those pseudo measurements would be long.
That can go both ways. Unless you tell an RV park that you have a 25 or 27 when you actually rocking a 23, they quite often try to shoe horn you into a smaller and tighter space.
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Old 10-11-2016, 05:16 PM   #76
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2014 27' FB International
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Quote:
Originally Posted by switz View Post
Remember that Airstream sizes are measured from the front of the ball socket to the back of the bumper while everything else is measuring just the box size. So when calling into a spot, we say the 31' Classic is a 28' for comparison and the 23D is 20 feet long. And even those pseudo measurements would be long.
This is pretty cool. Not questioning your statement, but would love to find something that explains how the length of an SOB trailer is actually spec'ed out. When I look at specs on a few SOB trailer websites, they don't seem to address this...but I could easily be missing something totally obvious. Thanks!
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Old 10-11-2016, 05:34 PM   #77
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Almost all SOBs measure box length, not the actual length of the trailer. We fit (barely) in 25' spots in our 30'.
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Old 10-12-2016, 12:21 AM   #78
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Milford Center , Ohio
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Originally Posted by Rocinante View Post
This is pretty cool. Not questioning your statement, but would love to find something that explains how the length of an SOB trailer is actually spec'ed out. When I look at specs on a few SOB trailer websites, they don't seem to address this...but I could easily be missing something totally obvious. Thanks!
I've never seen an explanation, but their specifications tell the story. Even among other Thor brands, Airstream is the only one I've found that measures the trailers in hitch-to-bumper lengths. For example, I was looking at their Coleman-brand trailers, and the "250TQ", which one would assume is 25 feet long, is actually 29'7". Their 235QB is actually 27'2". So, they are telling the truth in the specs, it's just the naming conventions that are somewhat misleading.

Then again, in talking with other people about travel trailers, some people have assumed that the length in the name refers to the actual body of the trailer, not the "extra bits" like tongue or bumper. In that sense, one could view Airstream as the ones who are misleading customers and selling trailers that are smaller than people expect them to be. I guess it's just a matter of expectations.

One thing I'm finding to be increasingly helpful is that some (not many, but some) campgrounds are starting to list more specific measurements for their sites - not just "25 feet", but something like "motorhomes 35 feet, trailers 27 feet, paved driveway is 75 feet" , or something to that effect. These measurements, along with actual photos of the sites, make things a lot more clear. I hope more campgrounds go this route.

To me, the other interesting question would be whether campgrounds set their rules based on the "actual" trailer sizes for SOBs, or whether they just build some leeway into their measurements knowing that people are probably going to tell them a smaller trailer size than they actually have in order to squeeze into more (smaller) sites.
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Old 10-12-2016, 11:01 AM   #79
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You are doing well to analyze your planned use. We also are more the 'active outdoor traveler' type. Our trailer provides for comfortable cooking, sleeping and toilet facilities. We don't spend much time in RV parks, watch TV or host parties aboard. We've got 43,000+ miles on our 2011 FC23FB, and quite a bit of that in rough country. We often travel for 4-6 weeks. At times I've mused over a larger unit (generally after a week with 2 grandkids aboard) but the overall agility and greater selection of suitable sites in Nat'l Parks leaves us very satisfied with our mid-sized 23. Many is the time when we've made a u-turn on a backroad or maneuvered into a great site that my First Mate has reminded me that we couldn't have done such with a larger trailer. The economy and agility of towing with our Jeep GC diesel is another big factor keeping us with the 23. There are always compromises, whatever you choose. Good luck in finding your best fit.

Safe Travels,
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Old 10-13-2016, 06:05 AM   #80
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Gneiss Guy wrote:
Quote:
When the kids were out of college, we bought our first Airstream, a Safari 25'. We loved it, but for one problem ... lack of comfortable seating. Due to a climbing accident, I require comfortable seating. This required us to move to a 30' trailer with dual recliners. We like it.
These kinds of needs are critically important but not necessarily a length issue. Something I found out when I researched for new seating in mine was that many owners of different models had negative to say about their seating, "the L Lounge is awful," "the couch is uncomfortable," "the dinette seating is deplorable." I ended up with a customized sofa from Villa similar to the 2012-2014 Classic. Many times more comfortable than the Flexsteel OEM. Not cheap. I would have preferred a stressless but did not want to alter the functionality of the trailer with sofa/bed/storage. It was a good choice.The point Gneiss Guy brings up is that some things don't/won't fit but they can be altered to meet your need when you pick your length.
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Old 10-29-2016, 08:21 AM   #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamuJoe View Post
You are doing well to analyze your planned use. We also are more the 'active outdoor traveler' type. Our trailer provides for comfortable cooking, sleeping and toilet facilities. We don't spend much time in RV parks, watch TV or host parties aboard. We've got 43,000+ miles on our 2011 FC23FB, and quite a bit of that in rough country. We often travel for 4-6 weeks. At times I've mused over a larger unit (generally after a week with 2 grandkids aboard) but the overall agility and greater selection of suitable sites in Nat'l Parks leaves us very satisfied with our mid-sized 23. Many is the time when we've made a u-turn on a backroad or maneuvered into a great site that my First Mate has reminded me that we couldn't have done such with a larger trailer. The economy and agility of towing with our Jeep GC diesel is another big factor keeping us with the 23. There are always compromises, whatever you choose. Good luck in finding your best fit.

Safe Travels,
JamuJoe

Thanks for the insights. You sound a lot like us. We really liked the 25RB, mainly due to the lounge area vs. the 23FB. We haven't yet seen a 23D but that might be the one for us. Looks like a pain to make the bed and one of us (my wife) will have a hard time getting up to use the bathroom, but it might be manageable. I love the idea of a smaller AS but with the lounge area. Not sure if the bed will be too small. We shall see!
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Old 10-31-2016, 01:06 PM   #82
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We full-time and we've seriously been thinking about downsizing due to the fact that we'll probably be getting a different tow rig in the next year or two. The new tow rig (a Ford Transit or Sprinter) won't be able to tow our 30 footer.

My wife and I keep going back and forth between downsizing and not. One day we want to stay in our 30 footer, and the other day we want a 25 footer just for a simpler, smaller setup. But we're starting to realize that there are a LOT of compromises with downsizing - far less room for clothes, having to climb over each other to get out of bed (sounds romantic, but after 3 days it's not), a cramped bathroom, no walkaround bed with room to change, smaller fridge, etc.

I guess it all comes down to how often you plan on moving and how long you'll be staying inside each day. If you're out hiking for 10 hours a day, a smaller trailer may be the perfect setup. If you're stuck inside working 8 hours a day (like I am), a bigger trailer is really nice.
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Old 10-31-2016, 01:15 PM   #83
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Lexington , South Carolina
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Originally Posted by msmcv51 View Post
We now have our 25' 87 Sovereign for sale. My wife has always preferred more compact cars and trailers. Sooo we have turned our tow vehicle into a mini motorhome by putting a Camp-lite 11' camper in the bed. Now we can tow our Ford C-max when we travel. The Camp-lite has no steel or wood in it so no ROT or RUST. The two big problems in most other RV's.


Can you give me details of the trailer you are selling or link to ad, etc.? Thanks. Paul
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Old 10-31-2016, 01:45 PM   #84
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Can't get much smaller!

This is a great discussion! Seeing as our Bambi II is only 17', there are only a handful of smaller AS models out there (Pacer, Bambi, Cruisette, Der Klein Prinz, Wee Wind, etc.), and all are few and far between.

That being said, we are happy with our 17 footer and our camping trips with a family of 4. It works for us...but we spend a lot of time outside.

This is a "to each his own" thread. Dad loved big, bigger, biggest AS models. My family growing up enjoyed a 31' for most of its camping days. But my wife and I like our little trailer because we can utilize a smaller tow vehicle, we get better gas mileage, etc. Lots of perks.

It is a bit tight in the morning until our gaucho bed is put away, but we manage.
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