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Old 11-27-2016, 01:12 PM   #21
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2016 27' Flying Cloud
Olympia , Washington
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1. As others have mentioned, get the awning package, a worthwhile expense.

2. If you don't like hot & plan to use your trailer during the summer anywhere south of Minnesota, consider getting the 2nd AC unit. One AC unit will lower the inside temp 15 to 20 degrees from ambient. If ambient is in the 90s & particularly if its in the 100s, chances are you'll appreciate a 2nd AC. Last summer, we went to the Natl Rally in WVA & couldn't get out of there, north, & to cooler climates fast enough. Maybe this is just a personal thing with me. I spent 20 years in Los Angeles (with months in the 90s & weeks in the 100s), finally gave up, & moved to Seattle, where it rarely gets over 80 (in Seattle, 85 is "hot"), which is just fine with me.

3. I urge you to spend some time in a 27 (which is really just a 25 + 2, but those extra 2 & a slightly different layout, particularly the north/south bed, made a lot of sense to us). Both my sweetie & I are glad we spent the several extra $1K to upgrade from the 25, which is what we, too, had planned to buy.
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Old 11-27-2016, 02:44 PM   #22
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I would recommend lewster to design your after market solar/battery system. He can tell you what to delete from the factory so that you will not buy something that you will replace in short order. For example: I would delete the converter and replace it with a Magnum inverter/charger. Airstream already uses the 2,000 watt in their Interstates, but I sure like my 3,000. They are awesome units and are made and serviced in the USA. Ask Lew Farber what your planned use calls for.
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Old 11-27-2016, 02:56 PM   #23
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You will do fine with the trailer as is, you can always ad things later. In my opinion the tires that come with the trailer will be just great. Be sure to read all the info that comes with the trailer.
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Old 11-27-2016, 03:00 PM   #24
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Why Max out your budget? Why take a deprecation hit by driving it off the lot. The warranty is not worth much. It only cover items Airstream makes. And only a dealer who sold a couple of hours away will fix it. Other dealers will take care of you, but they will take care of there regulars first.

Find a good used unit. That someone has debugged and upgraded. Good deals on trailers wont be around in the spring. If you find one buy it. 25FBs are very popular.

The late model Airstreams last many years with a little maintenance.
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Old 11-27-2016, 03:19 PM   #25
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I think your received a lot of good advice above. From personal experience I'd share the following:

1. Buy the base trailer that you think will meet your needs for an extended period. I'd suggest 5 years, some folks here might say 10. That's the essential investment you are making.

2. If you like the 23' floor plan and think it will work, then look at it closely. We didn't like the bed configurations on the 23 and went with a 25. Having just returned today from a 5 day getaway, I can say that both my wife and I appreciate that either of us can get out of bed without climbing over the other. Those compromises (or investments) made now will last the life of your AS experience.

3. Consider your tastes and preferences including how much you will use the trailer, how far you will typically drive, whether you will ever drive alone, whether you will want to boondock or use only full hookup campgrounds, etc.

4. Plan to spend less than your budget on the trailer. There are lots of items you will need right away (examples that may or may not apply based on #3: a hitch, linens, cookware, camp chairs, portable grill, outdoor table, outdoor rugs and tarps, generator(s), flash lights, leveling gear, chocks, water hoses, water filter, tool kit, you get the idea). Having trailer loaded with features and no budget for that stuff wouldn't make for a good AS experience.

4. Buy the stuff you a.) can't live without (e.g.: if you would never be happy with any other interior knowing what the IS looks like, then get the IS), b.) meets your sense of safety (tire pressure monitoring is an example) or c.) is more expensive to add later (convection microwave I believe is expensive to add later, 16" wheels and LT tires may cost more lat even after rselling the 15"s that are standard). Leave everything else for later.

Only your answer to those questions counts. We travel far and move quickly since we bought our trailer to "see America". We average over 1,000 miles per month on the road. For us, the better wheels and tires are a must. I don't have TPMS but wish I did and will add it. We rarely use the one awning we have and would not spend money to add more. Clearly other people who have responded camp differently and find that feature a high priority. We have the convection microwave. For us, it's a toss up. We boondock a bit and have to start two generators to use the oven if,we are not plugged in. Many national parks don't even have full hookup sites. I think I'd be happier with the standard propane oven and a cheap microwave on the counter when I needed one.

So... let "the force" guide you. The answer to your question is in you. The feedback from the Forum should give you perspective to combine with what you already know about yourself so you can make the right choices for you.
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Old 11-27-2016, 06:00 PM   #26
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For me, the most essential "add-on" would be a second A.C. We live in the south and travel in summer to the Rockies and the desert southwest. Such things as a back-up camera, solar panels, TPMS, etc. are insignificant if your trailer is too hot to use. We had a FC 25 with one A.C. and found ourselves battling the heat at every turn. The awning package helped, but often didn't solve the problem. We now have a FC 30 with two A.C.s and have no problem cooling the rig. Airstreams can really be hot! If you only camp during the cooler parts of the year, or never go where it is hot, then it's no problem.
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Old 11-27-2016, 06:03 PM   #27
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2014 27' FB International
Peoria , Arizona
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Yes, you should seriously consider Tyron Safety Bands. Can review on You Tube. Typle in Tyron Flat Tire Protection DEMO. It is the one that runs 8:58 minutes and has been viewed over 14,000 times. Dealer should be offering these.
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Old 11-27-2016, 10:40 PM   #28
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There really aren't that many extras that you can order/buy from the factory in spite of all the suggestions here. Convection oven, back up camera, extra awning package, power awning, 2nd a/c and the 16" upgraded wheels and rims. That's really it. I know as I just ordered my new 25FB INT'L Serenity a month ago.

I ordered the wheels and tire upgrade ($1700 extra) but certainly is not required and could be done by yourself for less later on.

I ordered the street/back side awning package for all the reasons stated above.

I did not order the convection oven. I will boondock most of the time so it's not needed. I can always bring a small portable one if I have "shore" power.

I ordered the back up camera.

I didn't order the second AC but if I lived in the south I probably would've.

I didn't order the factory solar as I can get more power for one third the cost from a Zamp (or other brand) portable unit.

So really, all I'd recommend is the awning package and the back up camera. (Possibly add the 2nd AC if you will be in the south a lot.) Limiting yourself to this will save considerable monies for you.

The only other way to save would be to consider the Flying Cloud 25FB with the Landmark interior. After seeing it at the Hershey RV show I was really torn and almost ordered it. However I went with the Serenity for the darker floor basically. Going with the Flying Cloud though will save you about $5000 over the INT'L Signature or Serenity with the prices I was quoted if you can live with that interior.

So that's my take, YMMV.

Enjoy the process and craziness. It's all part of the fun of becoming an Airstream owner!!
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Old 11-27-2016, 10:43 PM   #29
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You have to remember that AS builds trailers for FULL HOOK-UP camping, if you do any dry camping then you need to take a hard look at what you need to make that happen.
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Old 11-28-2016, 05:33 AM   #30
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We are also considering the Int'l Signature 25FB. Very much appreciate everyone's input. I wrote off the second A/C but now considering it. Thank you.
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Old 11-28-2016, 05:44 AM   #31
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Everyone, thank you so much! I appreciate all the great feed back. We are trying very diligently to buy used so we can get some of these options included in our price range. I'll keep you guys updated 😉
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Old 11-28-2016, 06:36 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by phil1ben View Post
We are also considering the Int'l Signature 25FB. Very much appreciate everyone's input. I wrote off the second A/C but now considering it. Thank you.
The second A/C may be nice, but bear in mind that the unit itself will add a lot of weight, up high, to your trailer (not good for stability) which will now reduce the amount of additional 'cargo' you can carry and the shore power cord is large, heavy and unwieldy.
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Old 11-28-2016, 07:22 AM   #33
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I would get 16" wheels and LT tires from the factory.
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Old 11-28-2016, 07:40 AM   #34
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I will also jump in. We originally were looking to buy new, but fell into a lightly used 1 year-old 25FB. It is a Serenity and my wife loved the décor. I never would have paid the price differential new, very hard to rationalize. New I would only do a Flying Cloud. Having said that, I saved so much money buying used, I still feel very good about it. No regrets.
My trailer had as factory option the convection/microwave, awnings, solar, and the inverter. I added a ProPride, 16's and Michelins, tire monitor, and a backup camera at delivery or early on.
If those things are on your list, the only items I would pay Airstream to install at the factory are the awnings and the microwave, so that the installation is covered by the factory warranty. Anything else is better/cheaper aftermarket.
Nevertheless, my experience is that if money is an issue, lightly used is the way to go.
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Old 11-28-2016, 08:24 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by dames7 View Post
You have to remember that AS builds trailers for FULL HOOK-UP camping, if you do any dry camping then you need to take a hard look at what you need to make that happen.
That's baloney. If only for full hookups then why a 36 gallon freshwater water tank, or why a water pump, or why even batteries? The factory fresh Airstream is a capable long weekend dry camper.
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Old 11-28-2016, 08:52 AM   #36
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I would recommend second a/c which comes with 50 amp service. You will be glad you have 50 amp coming in if you use many electrical appliances. The other nice to have can be added later. Ex. Awnings, solar, 16"wheels and 3-4 stage converter.
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Old 11-29-2016, 06:56 AM   #37
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You have to remember that AS builds trailers for FULL HOOK-UP camping, if you do any dry camping then you need to take a hard look at what you need to make that happen.
Not sure I agree with that statement. This past year I have spent about 9 weeks dry-camping/boondocking. My trailer unlike some here has not been expensively or heavily modified to go off grid. Portable 100 watts solar and small generator only. I can easily go two weeks before dumping tanks is necessary and the on board water can easily go several weeks. I would say that I have a trailer that is perfectly (almost) designed and built for boondocking.
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Old 11-29-2016, 10:42 AM   #38
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AS is good for a short weekend 2 days and then you start running into batteries problems.

To be out for several days dry camping you must have a generator or a good solar system set up to survive.

A generator is a must, I was at the Balloon Feast in NM with 4 nights of dry camping, of over 100+ AS only about 30% had generators, we loan ours out several times to help other keep their batteries charge up. Once your batteries go below 9.0 they are 50% to 60% use up and will take several hours to recharge. If you change to AGM like Lifeline 6V you will get more AMP hours and can stay out longer.

My point is, AS should add solar system to all trailers they built and put in a 3 or 4 stage converter with AGM Batteries for the money you pay to own a AS. There is a total difference in weekend dry camping and weeks of drying camping.

We have a propane generator so we do not need to haul gas.
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Old 11-29-2016, 10:57 AM   #39
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I disagree. I have no use for solar and would not want to pay for that if I don't have to.
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Old 11-29-2016, 11:12 AM   #40
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We have 900 watts of solar and a 600 amp-hour lithium battery on the 2014 Classic. Power is not the limiting factor with the Magnum MS-2812 inverter to power any 120Vac appliances we want. The time limit is usually the gray water tank filling up, usually twice as fast as the black water tank. We can get five or six days if we are careful.

We have 500 watts of solar and a 300 amp-hour lithium battery in the 2015 23D International Serenity. The Magnum MSH3012 hybrid inverter and a single 2000 watt propane powered Honda generator can run the air conditioner or the microwave. We have 39 gallons of fresh water but only 21 gallon gray and 19 gallon black tanks. We have three days or four if we are really careful with water use.
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