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Old 12-10-2015, 04:20 PM   #21
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2015 25' FB Flying Cloud
Huntley , Illinois
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We owned a 22 and loved it. Being a woman ready to retire, i hitched it up by myself and drove it many placed. I had no issues in backing up and fitting it offers great flexibility. We have upsized to a 25 because we will be traveling extended miled and months. I have hitched and driven the 25 all by myself. The 22 was less intimidating the kitchen area and bath with horseshoe table really worked. We even had 4 adults in it for sleeping. We got a great return on the value on our upgrade
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Old 12-10-2015, 04:30 PM   #22
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2012 20' Flying Cloud
Richardson , Texas
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We love our FC 20. Where it really reigns superior is the galley area.. There is a lot of counter top space with an extra corresponding upper cabinet.
This model has a great layout and plenty of storage.
Also, I agree with other posters on the bath - having a separate shower is more important than it might seem when standing in the showroom.

Also, when looking at price consider the extra expense of adding bumper storage. This does not come standard on the sports and you really need a good place to put those dirty, greasy towing items.
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Old 12-10-2015, 09:40 PM   #23
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Traverse City , Michigan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HAschner View Post
We love our FC 20. Where it really reigns superior is the galley area.. There is a lot of counter top space with an extra corresponding upper cabinet.
This model has a great layout and plenty of storage.
Also, I agree with other posters on the bath - having a separate shower is more important than it might seem when standing in the showroom.

Also, when looking at price consider the extra expense of adding bumper storage. This does not come standard on the sports and you really need a good place to put those dirty, greasy towing items.

x2, love our 20!
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Old 12-10-2015, 11:11 PM   #24
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2014 19' International
Port Townsend , Washington
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19' er Great for Us

We made the jump (tenting to an AS) last year so not as much experience as many others...but we love our 19' Int'l. The 16' was way too small for the two of us and while we very much admired our good friends' two larger AS's we did not want the extra size, and we still don't!! I am not wild about the wet bath but my wife is, so I guess I am too. However we did recently swap our beloved Toyota Highlander for a Ford F-150 to better handle things and am anxious to dewinterize it and head out...
Actually it tows vey well, but I think that is the cas for virtually any AS, just get enough of a TV and drive smart. That said I am an experienced tower and my wife isn't and she feels very nervous when (quite rarely) she is behind the wheel.
The comment about the better galley in the 20' makes me wonder a bit but I like cooking outside when possible and while our kitchen is tight is is nicely designed. For us it is just about perfect, but we are all different in what works best.
Good Luck, Marc
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Old 12-11-2015, 07:47 AM   #25
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Newport , Pennsylvania
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Go for a 30 more room and you will eventually want to use it more

think 10 times and buy once, buying and trading up is a very expensive lesson

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Old 12-11-2015, 08:05 AM   #26
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2014 20' Flying Cloud
Sag Harbor , New York
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KelloggKid View Post
Thanks Doug. All good points.
There is no substitute for going to a large dealer and seeing the different sizes in person, even if you have to fly there to do it.

A good investment for an INFORMED decision. You will get used to whatever size you buy, if it is the right one for you.

Good luck.

Peter

PS I would also suggest two crucial decisions which will help define parameters:

-- wet bath vs. dry bath with stall shower
-- window size and configuration (operable screened opening size)

We went for the Flying Cloud 20' because it was the smallest model with stall shower, large opening windows hinged on top, and an LP gas oven (vs. convection oven microwave) with a great galley configuration. Most Sport models have I believe dinky little sliding windows which are useless IMO for boondocking in hot weather. Useless may seem a strong term . . . But check them out and imagine a 95 degree day in the sun with no wind.
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Old 12-11-2015, 08:43 AM   #27
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2014 31' Classic
2015 23' International
2013 25' FB International
Apache Junction , Arizona
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There is one concern I have about the 20' Bambi with a 5,000 pound GVW and a single axle. Airstream installs the GoodYear Marathon ST225/75R15D tires that are rated 2,540 pounds @ 65 psi and are 28.3" in diameter. So a fully loaded trailer, not hard to do, would put the tire's load at their maximum load rating.

Many on the forums that are towing out West in the summer have migrated to the 16" Michelin LT225/75R16/E LTX M/S2 tire that is rated 2,680 pounds @ 80 psi and is 29.2" in diameter which raises the trailer about 1/2" so there is more road clearance. There are many tire threads one can read on this forum and the Michelin tires have had a very good service history when compared to other brands.

while overseas, I made the mistake of ordering a trailer without ever being in one. I initially was thinking of a 19' and switched to the 25FB. I thought I would have no issues towing with my 2007 Mercedes ML320 CDI diesel. Loaded for camping and with both my wife and I in the car, we were exceeding the axle ratings of the car. This caused the acquisition on a Dodge 2500HD with Cummins.

We had issues with our 25FB and moved to our 2014 31' Classic. We are completely satisfied with all aspects of the Classic after spending lots of time and money fixing and modifying the unit.

We added a 2015 23D that the 2007 Mercedes can tow so we can take trips into the older RV parks out West near us where the Classic just will not fit into the smaller spaces. The 23D has the narrow body and has two axles. With the 6,000 pound GVW, it is a perfect match for our existing car and could also be towed by the Dodge.

So while looking at all the Airstream models, please keep in mind the proposed tow vehicle and it's limitations as those specifications dictate the maximum tongue weight and total combined weight that the tow vehicle can safely handle.
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Old 12-11-2015, 09:01 AM   #28
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2014 20' Flying Cloud
Sag Harbor , New York
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Quote:
Originally Posted by switz View Post
There is one concern I have about the 20' Bambi with a 5,000 pound GVW and a single axle. Airstream installs the GoodYear Marathon ST225/75R15D tires that are rated 2,540 pounds @ 65 psi and are 28.3" in diameter. So a fully loaded trailer, not hard to do, would put the tire's load at their maximum load rating.

Many on the forums that are towing out West in the summer have migrated to the 16" Michelin LT225/75R16/E LTX M/S2 tire that is rated 2,680 pounds @ 80 psi and is 29.2" in diameter which raises the trailer about 1/2" so there is more road clearance. There are many tire threads one can read on this forum and the Michelin tires have had a very good service history when compared to other brands.
[snip]
Thanks, I have been wondering about this. I will check the other threads when I have time, but does the switch to the 16' Michelins require any modification of the wheel well or exterior skin? Thanks.
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Old 12-11-2015, 11:07 AM   #29
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2000 19' Bambi
mt. Prospect , Illinois
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You deduct the tongue weight, as it is not carried by the trailer tires, so there is no problem with D or even C rated tires on a 19'. The wheel wells are a tight fit for the 15" tires on a 16 or 19, and I don't think you could install 16's. Our 19 is fine for us, just two, and easy to tow and handle. The 8' width is comfortable and easy to see around. The 7'6" sport 22 would be even better.
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Old 12-11-2015, 11:45 AM   #30
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mt. Prospect , Illinois
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I removed the dinette table and made an insert to make the seating into a "U" for a more flexible seating plan. Hated being stuck with a dinette as the only place to sit down when inside- a common problem with smaller, modern trailers. A removable table on a pedestal base gives us the table we need- but we can move it as desired. The older trailers had gauchos so that you had a couch.
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Old 12-11-2015, 12:54 PM   #31
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2018 19' Flying Cloud
Newport , Washington
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Thank you all for taking the time to respond. We truly appreciate your having done so.

After reading through your comments I think we've pretty much settled on either a 19' or 20' FC. One of the most consistent and common comments you made was anti-wet bath and that was a concern for us as well so the 16' Sport is out. We really like the cabinets and upgraded components in the FC. We've been to multiple dealers, large and small, and had never seen a 20' FC so missed that. My wife does appreciate counter space so we will have to find a 20' to look at.

In an effort to gauge popularity (and it's impact on resale ability) I looked at the inventory of many dealers and found most of them have way more 19' units than either 16 or 20. I'm guessing that the market for the 19 is greater than the 16 thus the resale ability would be better.

Many of you promoted the idea of something bigger and we fully understand why. However for the next 5-6 years at least, our usage is going to be pretty restricted so no long or lengthy trips. Really do plan on using it mostly as a guest cabin on our property with a weekend trips to one of our kids and the occasional 2 day boondocks trip close by. The added benefit of something shorter is the ability to park it in my shop should I feel the need/desire to do so.

Now comes the real challenge, figuring out how we're going to fund this little adventure
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Old 12-11-2015, 02:03 PM   #32
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2014 20' Flying Cloud
Sag Harbor , New York
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You may have seen this already, but the floor plan for the FC20 is in the drop down menu here:

2016 Airstream Flying Cloud Floorplans & Specs | Airstream

Also, there is a fairly long thread about this model, and the earlier posts contain discussions about the pro's and con's of various similarly sized trailers:

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f516...rs-127845.html

I still recommend finding one to check out, whether new or used. The classifieds here let you filter for shorter trailers, and I remember seeing used FC20's all over the country, especially in the NW.

Good luck!

Peter

PS -- Here are the used trailers filtered for 13' to 21' --

http://www.airstreamclassifieds.com/...th-range/13-21

This Safari SE20 listed in Arizona is a similar earlier model to the FC20:

http://www.airstreamclassifieds.com/...-20-arizona-2/

Here is a FC20 in Texas:

http://www.airstreamclassifieds.com/...loud-20-texas/

The seller in Texas seems motivated, and this is a great time of year for buyers -- go for it!
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Old 12-11-2015, 02:48 PM   #33
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2014 20' Flying Cloud
Sag Harbor , New York
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Boise FC20 to check out:

https://boise.craigslist.org/rvd/5346878357.html
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Old 12-11-2015, 03:11 PM   #34
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2000 19' Bambi
mt. Prospect , Illinois
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KK,
We've used ours as a guest house a number of times. Parked in the driveway, and hooked up to the sewer cleanout, it's always a hit for family and friends. You mentioned parking it in the shop occasionally. I've done that when there has been hail warnings - put this cute little trailer in a building, and it is suddenly HUGE!
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Old 12-11-2015, 03:22 PM   #35
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2012 25' Flying Cloud
2007 20' Safari SE
Fuquay Varina , North Carolina
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Really think about the 20'

When we went to the Airstream dealership to buy our first Airstream we had decided that a 19' was all we needed. After walking around a 16' (didn't like because of the wet bath), a 19' and a 20' we quickly decided that the 20' was the way to go. What sold us was the galley layout and the double sink.
Another feature that worked well for us is that the bed made a good place to sit and watch TV. We put a wedge pillow at the back and it was quite comfortable. The only option in the 19' is to sit at the dinnette. We really enjoyed our 20' for the 5 years we owned it.
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Old 12-11-2015, 04:51 PM   #36
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Chuck the 19 idea. Your choices are the FC20 and the 22Sport. Now, We really like the 22Sport. It's narrower, basically a smaller version of our 23 from a layout perspective, and it has a long bed....I'm tall you see. But, the FC 20 has a double sink, the trunk for the nasty stuff, a 3 burner stove top, and the wider interior. The biggest value, however, is the rock guards. Our Port has some rock dings and our Starboard has a small kink at the bottom from a tire tread that we could not completely side step. The Stainless takes a beating and comes back for more. The aluminum shell on a Sport is going to look real beat up unless you just keep the trailer on your property all the time. You let her run with the herd even once and you may have a repair bill. As I said, I really like the 22, but I think the 20 is a better solution for a long time trailer requirement. Now take a breath, your work is done. Sit the wife in both and she'll let you know which one is the best. Pat
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Old 12-11-2015, 05:35 PM   #37
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2019 27' Flying Cloud
Kansas City , Missouri
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Our Lil' Puppy has added rock guards and electric jack. Easy adds for the dealer to do.

IMHO the deciding factor on the 20 to the 22 is the bed. If the bed on the 20 meets your needs, than I think that is the better choice (not considering cost) as the storage and counterspace is certainly better in the 20.

We decided that the narrower 48 inch wide bed was not an option for us. Kitchen counter space eliminated the 16 and 19. So were very happy to go with the 22 vs paying a lot more for a 23FB or 25.
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Old 12-11-2015, 06:00 PM   #38
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Surf City , New Jersey
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why is the 22 ft. bambi less expensive than a 19 ft flying cloud?
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Old 12-11-2015, 06:19 PM   #39
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the sport has a lower "trim" level than the flying cloud.

It lacks these items that are standard equipment on the flying cloud:
rear bumper
electric hitch jack
flip up style cabinets
option for oven
top hinge windows (except for the front, the sport windows are fixed at the top and the bottom third will open on a hinge. The front window is a top hinge window on the sports. The exterior look of the window also differs because of the different style.)
Only 1 battery standard
only 1 fantastic fan
narrower width
no rock guards
ac with electric heat strip vs heat pump I believe in the FC.

That being the major difference, they are similar in tank capacity and weight.

22 has an operational window in the bathroom. 19 has a front view dinette
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Old 12-11-2015, 07:07 PM   #40
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Huntsville , Alabama
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Best of luck in your decision. My wife and I have a 16 foot sport and have been very pleased with it. It certainly depends on how you plan on using it. We have had our 16' Sport for 12 month and have taken 11 trips. Most of our trips are 10 to 14 days at a time.


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