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-   -   About to make the investment. (http://www.airforums.com/forums/f295/about-to-make-the-investment-192652.html)

James3344 02-27-2019 10:48 PM

About to make the investment.
 
Hello everyone! My girlfriend and I have decided that we are going to make the investment in a new 2019 Airstream Sport 16RB. To be honest we have butterflies making such a big purchase as a young couple, but we have done a lot of research and are really excited!

One of my main questions that I wanted to ask AS owners, is how they do on washboard dirt roads? I live in Idaho, and a lot of the dirt roads I am hoping to travel on are pretty bumpy. Will the vibrations rattle a lot of things loose?

Any other helpful information for the purchasing process is appreciated. Thank you! And I look forward to frequenting this website.

pteck 02-27-2019 11:09 PM

Washboard roads are hard on any vehicle, and probably extra hard on trailers, with Airstream being no exception.

That said, I've done it and there are strategies to manage it.

A good tow vehicle that has supple suspension will help. Preferably not a 3/4 or 1-ton truck that will beat up the trailer, even on road.

The same tried and trued strategy that has been used with off-road vehicle can be applied to the trailer. Air down to something ~50% of the on-road air pressure.

Upgrading to taller trailer tires to increase clearance and sidewall aspect ratio (taller sidewalls) can really help.

I have a built in on-board air compressor on my tow vehicle so I don't have to think twice about airing down the tow vehicle or trailer tires.

ke6gkv 02-28-2019 12:55 AM

welcome to the forums, as pteck stated slow down and air down tires. i boondock and most roads are dirt/gravel.all mt single axle trailers bounced up and down more than my twin-axle trailers. go slow and enjoy! kurt

James3344 02-28-2019 09:05 AM

Ok thank you for the information. Doesn't sound like it will be to much of a problem! I'm really excited to take it out for the first time, already have a list of campsites to hit this summer.

kittmaster 02-28-2019 09:11 AM

Welcome aboard....my wife and I are the same as you, in the process of acquisition. Our starts building March 13, so we understand what you're feeling!

Lots of info here although a PITA to find certain things......but have a good long look around and ask away, lots of helpful people here.

Wabbiteer 02-28-2019 09:32 AM

Look into a cushioned hitch ball extension - the hop of the tow vehicle rear axle transmitted down the hitch A-frame can fatigue structural fastening points over time - on vintage trailers the 3/4 & 1 ton tow vehicles can/will seek to separate the front of the shell shell from frame.

https://shockerhitch.com/

https://airsafehitches.com/receiver-hitch/

Whats a few sheared rivets, oh, think of all the enlarged 'give' downstream from the damage even after the missing/visibly loose rivets are replaced...

Yeah, there may be other brands, but if I had a late model trailer I'd be hitching my wagon to one of them.

And to misquote Andy - running gear imbalance can get telegraphed to focus 12, 15 feet or more from the axles as oscillations set in, damaging stanchion points, making black-ring rivets and loosening cabinets; it'd be the same for hammering frame/shell through exuberant wash-board road travel..

Adventure.AS 02-28-2019 10:01 AM

BTW, the Sport trailers don’t have shock absorbers like the larger AS trailers.

Kevinshortnh 02-28-2019 11:41 AM

I recommend you also get a set of Rock Tamers to avoid damage from rocks flying up from your rear tires.

James3344 02-28-2019 11:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Wabbiteer (Post 2214720)
Look into a cushioned hitch ball extension - the hop of the tow vehicle rear axle transmitted down the hitch A-frame can fatigue structural fastening points over time - on vintage trailers the 3/4 & 1 ton tow vehicles can/will seek to separate the front of the shell shell from frame.

https://shockerhitch.com/

https://airsafehitches.com/receiver-hitch/

Whats a few sheared rivets, oh, think of all the enlarged 'give' downstream from the damage even after the missing/visibly loose rivets are replaced...

Yeah, there may be other brands, but if I had a late model trailer I'd be hitching my wagon to one of them.

And to misquote Andy - running gear imbalance can get telegraphed to focus 12, 15 feet or more from the axles as oscillations set in, damaging stanchion points, making black-ring rivets and loosening cabinets; it'd be the same for hammering frame/shell through exuberant wash-board road travel..

Thank you! So for a 2019 Sport, do you think that getting the shocker hitch would make a significant difference?

Adventure.AS 02-28-2019 12:04 PM

I forgot to mention that the Sport trailers also don't have segment protectors, which may be available at a significant cost.

Silvertwinkie 02-28-2019 12:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by James3344 (Post 2214595)
Hello everyone! My girlfriend and I have decided that we are going to make the investment in a new 2019 Airstream Sport 16RB. To be honest we have butterflies making such a big purchase as a young couple, but we have done a lot of research and are really excited!

One of my main questions that I wanted to ask AS owners, is how they do on washboard dirt roads? I live in Idaho, and a lot of the dirt roads I am hoping to travel on are pretty bumpy. Will the vibrations rattle a lot of things loose?

Any other helpful information for the purchasing process is appreciated. Thank you! And I look forward to frequenting this website.


Buy a preowned unit if you can. The cost difference between new and even a year or two old is going to be significant. If I could go back in time to late 2003, I might have done just that.



There are some inherent issues with Airstream trailers and one that has been out there for at least a year will have some of the items shaken out and if for some reason the dreaded fillform corrosion issue is going to appear, it will have started in most cases within a year or two. In that year or two, you could be talking thousands of dollars that will not have evaporated out of your wallet.

James3344 02-28-2019 12:46 PM

Yeah the dealer said that the segment protectors run about $750 each! Ouch!

Does anyone have any recommendations for a good drop hitch brand? My hitch sits about an inch to high on my truck currently.

davidrrand 02-28-2019 03:24 PM

After one destructive washboard encounter at 11 Mile SP in CO I have learned to avoid at all cost washboard roads with my 25FC. Doors under kitchen sink and bath sink pulled loose at hinges, microwave came very close to fully dislodging from the cabinet and loose drain plumbing under the sinks. No permanent damage fortunately but tightened every screw in the trailer and repaired those that pulled loose with glue and tooth picks. Paved roads are tough enough on these babies! ��

tjdonahoe 02-28-2019 05:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by James3344 (Post 2214816)
Yeah the dealer said that the segment protectors run about $750 each! Ouch!

Does anyone have any recommendations for a good drop hitch brand? My hitch sits about an inch to high on my truck currently.

Etrailer..or amzon:D

James3344 02-28-2019 07:56 PM

Ok, so maybe I will do my best to avoid bad washboard roads. But how about just dirt roads? As long as I take it slow and steady the 16' Sport will make it right?

afk314 02-28-2019 08:37 PM

We do it..
 
There are plenty of us that take long dirt roads to where we want to be. Last spring, my first trip was 27 miles on dirt with washboards (each way). You just have to go slow. And fix hinges (that is a promise). I added 6 more screws to the microwave, others get rid of it entirely. Mirrors fall. Rivets pop. Shower doors need additional support, etc. The rattling takes a toll but nothing you can't fix or manage after each incident. My airstream provides me with accommodation in places where there isn't accomodation outside of tent sites. I bought it for that reason and its how I use it. And I'm not at all alone.


Good luck,
Adam

pteck 02-28-2019 08:37 PM

Slow and steady is the trick.

Airing down tires make a huge world of difference to ride. Try it sometimes with your tow vehicle solo. Drive with normally inflated tires. Then try with them down to 18-20 psi.

Jarring to plush. The trailer will experience the same thing.

bweybright 02-28-2019 08:55 PM

My first question is that your tag line says the trailer is an "investment"...Please rethink that. Trailers are luxury items that cost money..they don't offer financial return like an investment. Now investment in terms of return on enjoyment, fun, family time, my own potty that my buns like, etc. they are totally there.
Second thought is that from my experience here on the forum, and with my own trailer they are a bit of a Queen (or prince or princess some might say) who felt the pea under the mattress. Meaning they don't take hard roads well. So if you are wanting to go offroad or on BLM land maybe another brand would be a better solution for you?
I know some here do take them on BLM land regularly, but I also think they like to tinker and fix stuff so it is doable. If you aren't into the handyman fix it thing you may not be as happy as you want to be.

Just some hopefully helpful thoughts.
Good luck on your decision, and enjoy what you do chose to do.

Adventure.AS 02-28-2019 09:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by James3344 (Post 2214970)
Ok, so maybe I will do my best to avoid bad washboard roads. But how about just dirt roads? As long as I take it slow and steady the 16' Sport will make it right?

Yes, it is great trailer. Just keep your speed low and was previously mentioned try airing down.

ROBERT CROSS 02-28-2019 09:32 PM

Welcome Aboard!! 🥂👍
 
As noted above...Airstream as an 'investment' is a bit of an oxymoron, it's more like a payroll deduction. 😂

If you end up loving the lifestyle it should last a good while. :wally:

Bob
🇺🇸

Wolfwhistle 02-28-2019 09:54 PM

When I read "investment", it was deja vu all over again. My ex would use that word anytime she spent money that she knew I would not approve of or that we had not discussed beforehand. The ROI was not what I had hoped it would be.

The best thing going into a large purchase like this is to do so with eyes wide open. I would think it might be best to buy used first to see if the lifestyle fits you two.

The last thing I would have thought to ask about was how well they hold up on washboard roads.

But, this is a very good question and got some very good advice.

Best wishes and many miles and smiles,
Clint

James3344 02-28-2019 10:23 PM

Sorry everyone my choice of words was a little misleading. I was thinking of "about to make the investment" as in I am about to begin on the journey of owning an airstream which is an investment of money, time, sweat, tears, work, etc. to receive the payoff of memories, fun, adventure, etc.

I understand that this purchase is not going to be giving me any sort of financial return.

Wolfwhistle 03-02-2019 07:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by James3344 (Post 2215011)
Sorry everyone my choice of words was a little misleading. I was thinking of "about to make the investment" as in I am about to begin on the journey of owning an airstream which is an investment of money, time, sweat, tears, work, etc. to receive the payoff of memories, fun, adventure, etc.

I understand that this purchase is not going to be giving me any sort of financial return.


James, Aren't we humans odd the way we see a word and take off running with it. Here's hoping your ROI is far more than you can even imagine and that the new Airstream brings much joy. When I see my little 23FB I can't help but smile. Make your's a way to bring relationships closer and make lots of memories along the way.
Clint

TouringDan 03-02-2019 08:10 AM

About to make the investment.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Wolfwhistle (Post 2215462)
James, Aren't we humans odd the way we see a word and take off running with it. Here's hoping your ROI is far more than you can even imagine and that the new Airstream brings much joy. When I see my little 23FB I can't help but smile. Make your's a way to bring relationships closer and make lots of memories along the way.
Clint



Very well said Wolfwhistle. It is kind of like buying a car. Buying new is expensive. Most folks buy new because they can and it is easier than buying used. Buying used definitely saves some money but it is harder to find and get what you want. Whatever works for you.

Looking at our 66 Tradewind always brings a smile to my face. That is a good feeling.

Dan

SteveSueMac 03-02-2019 08:31 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by James3344 (Post 2215011)
Sorry everyone my choice of words was a little misleading. I was thinking of "about to make the investment" as in I am about to begin on the journey of owning an airstream which is an investment of money, time, sweat, tears, work, etc. to receive the payoff of memories, fun, adventure, etc.

I understand that this purchase is not going to be giving me any sort of financial return.



Nothing to apologize for!

“Investment” - the action or process of investing money for profit or material result (according to an online dictionary).

“Profit OR material result” suggests to me there are non-“material” (as in “financial”, not “significant”) profits to be gained by some expenditures.

Meaning - in our case (DW & I) - we weren’t expecting to make a financial profit on the purchase of a new AS in 2012 - but we were absolutely expecting to profit significantly in ways that have nothing to do with money. Our returns have vastly exceeded our high expectations going in to it in the first place. You couldn’t offer me 3X what I paid for it - even though that could fund a whole new rig - the memories contained in our Tin Goat are priceless. Just thinking about it cranks up endorphins. Seeing it - that much more - and being on the road and camping with it? Literally more valuable to me than gold.

Oh - and I’m not an idiot - if I was offered $10,000,000 for it, I’d make memories in another unit - but you get the gist [emoji3]

Enjoy your investment. I hope you get the same kind of ROI we enjoy!

Foiled Again 03-02-2019 07:08 PM

I bought my first Airstream in 2005 and hated [emoji16][emoji1787] it so much that I am now on my third and probably last one.

One thing about an Airstream I truly still love is pulling into a new place, setting up and propping the door open, while getting ready to drink some iced tea or cider. Usually takes 15 minutes or less before someone walks up with a wistful expression and I offer them a quick look at the inside... and I am no longer a stranger in a strange place. The Airstream is the best Welcome mat. Priceless. Only downside? Always have to dust and sweep before going outside.

First day of towing first Airstream on first trip...
a man follows me west on I-64 and I pull into the Williamsburg rest stop to find a state trooper. The other car followed and the very nice man and his wife approached. "My dad had an Airstream and I've wanted one for years, yours is just beautiful, would you consider selling it, what year is it? By the time he left he learned that (A) they're still making them, (B) mine looked brand new because it was and (C) they lived within 50 miles of Lakeland, NJ home of Colonial Airstream.

That said... were I a boondocker getting ready to buy my first trailer, I would get a Casita, Oliver or Scamp, but NOT a Nest by Airstream (early production bugs). The fiberglass "eggs" are much more affordable and body damage is easy and inexpensive to fix, plus go look at used ones! They depreciate about $500 a year and often sell within hours of showing up on craigslist. No dealer networks or middleman markups - see the websites to get a tour from a safisfied owner near you, drive to the factory to pick up the one you order! Bad side to that? Ask what the wait time is... six months in some cases.

More than a few members here own a fiberglass egg and an Airstream or two. The egg is for down and dirty camping, the Airstream is for glamping.

Good luck and happy trails and welcome to the world of Airstreams. You have Alumanitis. Resistance is futile - but full onset can be delayed and you'll buy more intelligently if it isn't your first RV.

Outbackga 03-06-2019 11:12 AM

Investment?...

Dave-Nancy 03-06-2019 11:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by James3344 (Post 2214711)
Ok thank you for the information. Doesn't sound like it will be to much of a problem! I'm really excited to take it out for the first time, already have a list of campsites to hit this summer.

One comment that I will make is the idea that someone mentioned that you need a big truck to pull a 16' Bambi. We have pulled, very successfully, our 19' FC with our 350 2013 Highlander Limited with the factory tow package. We live in the Willamette Valley. So, many of our trips begin with a serious climb up the McKenzie pass an through the summits in the Rogue Valley. Never have we had the slightest issue with not enough power or bad weight distribution. We have an Equalizer hitch set-up. No sway issues. D

whbrown 03-06-2019 11:42 AM

Hi James, If you are going to be on those kinds of road, you may want to consider getting the rock shields installed. I have a 2018 Sport 22' and I am currently looking into them. All AS have these except Sport models.

billsargent 03-06-2019 12:06 PM

Hello James
I too live in Boise, and am a recent purchaser of of our first AS. It is a 1002, 27 FB Classic that I am assuming I purchased at the same place as you..Dealer in Caldwell, Airstream Adventures (Solid place, no issues there). I just wanted to echo some of the comments that I have read regarding your question. You are smart to ask here. There is a world of experience in owning Air Streams out in the words of Forum menbers, that I have read here. And kicked a lot to tires before the substantial investment of AS. We joined The Idaho Airstream Club too, as the members there have given lots of tips and advice on ownership, as well as all the comradery that one can hope to find in “glamping”.
I think the pride of ownership, as mentioned, will always be there for you. The AS will call to you when you are not using it. You may experience the foibles of new ownership, but you will surely come to love and delight in your trailer.
Happy trails...Idaho AS club members meet every month (first Saturday) at The Golden Corral..maybe I’ll see you down the road.

Americal 03-06-2019 01:32 PM

Airstream 16'
 
If you are going out boondocking you might consider a 19' trailer. They have two waste tanks (Gary & Black) while the 16 has only one if I am not mistaken. That one tank can fill up very fast. Most common mistake is buying one size too small. Gravel roads I would definitely want rock guards. They are stainless steel and protect the trailer. Sometimes the factory has used ones if you can live with a few rock dings. There was a very nice 19' trailer listed on the classifieds a few day ago from Oklahoma.

ride2k 03-06-2019 03:59 PM

First of all and with all due respect, to consider an airstream or any RV and investment is to not understand the definition of investment. They are an expense and they can be a big expense. There’s a saying about boats that a boat is a hole in the water into which you pour money; there are some parallels with RVs and airstreams are no exception. it’s a lifestyle, it’s a quality product that you can enjoy richly but not if you’re too “poorly”, pun intended.
As to how a single axle airstream would do in a bumpy road I would not be qualified to answer. I can tell you that all airstreams have minimal clearance compared to many other rigs so that should be a consideration and I can also tell you from my 2XL model that any shaking and vibration will cause loosening of screws and wear and tear to occur at a more accelerated rate.
One more suggestion; you might try a used model of some sort, airstream or other, at minimal cost and give the lifestyle a try before you sink larger sums of dollars into a new mode. all the best to you.

perri 03-06-2019 04:05 PM

Lots of good advice here regarding tire pressure (sure wish I knew that trick on the way into Anza Borrego), size of rig, trying used. I wanted to chime in on the used idea: as mentioned above, the most common mistake in buying new seems to be size. You may be thrilled w your sport, but many people return their smaller rigs within a year to get something bigger. Spend a lot of time inside one on the lot, pretending to cook, use the WC, get in and out of bed to use the WC, store dirty clothes and retrieve clean ones—you get the idea. Should you decide to buy a used Sport, many with low miles are available.

James3344 03-07-2019 10:33 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Outbackga (Post 2217092)
Investment?...

If you read the comments you'd understand...

But hey! Not everyone likes to read.

SilverHouseDreams 03-07-2019 11:20 AM

You may also want to consider a lift, there are 3" (block) lifts available to give you more clearance between the sensitive plumbing and the ground when you drive through the ditch next to the road into a camping space.

Freedom21 03-07-2019 12:22 PM

Just curious why you would want to beat up a new trailer? These trailers have enough problems on paved roads, especially when new. Buying a used trailer would probably be a better investment, plus it should have all of the new trailer "bugs" worked out.

TouringDan 03-07-2019 12:57 PM

About to make the investment.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Freedom21 (Post 2217448)
Just curious why you would want to beat up a new trailer? These trailers have enough problems on paved roads, especially when new. Buying a used trailer would probably be a better investment, plus it should have all of the new trailer "bugs" worked out.



Folks buy new because they can, it’s easy and they feel more secure with every new, the latest and greatest and a warranty. It may be just what they do when they go to buy a car or in this case a trailer.

Dan

twbucksr 03-08-2019 08:33 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by whbrown (Post 2217103)
Hi James, If you are going to be on those kinds of road, you may want to consider getting the rock shields installed. I have a 2018 Sport 22' and I am currently looking into them. All AS have these except Sport models.



I second whbrown regarding the rock guards. We got dinged a grand when we traded in our 22 FB because it had a couple of dings from rocks where the guards would have protected.

sctinman44 03-09-2019 10:07 AM

We were at Madison RV Resort and Marina near Yellowstone July 2018. 6 miles hard packed gravel wash board road from US Hwy. 1 clock off wall, 1 cabinet popped open (groceries everywhere- forgot 2 bungee), 1 pop rivet popped loose on exterior trim. About 10 mph. We stayed 4 nights, went in and out daily in truck. When we left we went even slower, mostly idles speed..Really nice RV Park, would go again if in the area. Went to campground in Jamestown ND 1.5 miles same condition. Ruff roads will take its toll on Airstream or any trailer. Just slow down really slow. Good luck, enjoy your Airstream and the "ADVENTURE", Airstream will take you places you never dreamed of. RVing and camping since 1980. WBCCI # 11944


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