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Old 11-25-2021, 10:47 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by Mattedfred View Post
Thanks very much Big Red!

Fortunately we learned of the advantages of the twin bed floor plans early on in our search thanks to the advice of our local AS dealer. I just wish AS made a FC 23RBT. To stick to an RBT we have to go FC 25' or to stick with a 23' with twins we have to go GT 23FBT.

I really like getting 3 exterior storage compartments when you go twin beds but I do prefer the RBT model because that large exterior storage compartment is at the back instead of the front behind the propane tanks and is therefore more useable.

If only they made a GB 23RBT with manual stabilizers and tongue jack. I think I might learn to appreciate the power awning.
Many folks love their 23's but also many folks who owned the 23, moved up to the 25'! (twin) The GT is nice for sure, but you can get your RBT with the FC model...and if your really wanting the "lounge" flexibility of the GT, you can get that done at AS Adventures in Portland/Washington shop, with a nice wrap booth/lounge area plus you can also get more storage and surface space. If you want the additional "bling" of a GT, you can easily have them customize...less money than a GT or perhaps close to same; I don't remember, but I know they do good work. Call and explore; you can see their catalog on line...life is short!
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Old 11-25-2021, 10:51 AM   #22
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Selbyville , Delaware
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If you don't want power awnings, etc., you have to stick with the Flying Cloud. I wouldn't go globetrotter if I ever upgraded because too much power options. I like it simple. Have has a 25 RBT for going on six years. You will appreciate the extra space over a 23. Happy hunting!
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Old 11-25-2021, 11:00 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by jamieb1086 View Post
If you don't want power awnings, etc., you have to stick with the Flying Cloud. I wouldn't go globetrotter if I ever upgraded because too much power options. I like it simple. Have has a 25 RBT for going on six years. You will appreciate the extra space over a 23. Happy hunting!
Thanks Jamie and I know. If only all of the power features were options on the GT because we do prefer the interior finish over that of the FC.
Glad to hear you are enjoying your 25RBT. We know we would appreciate the extra width and length when we retire and would be spending more time inside the trailer but aren't sure we really need either right now.
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Old 11-25-2021, 11:05 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by gypsydad View Post
Many folks love their 23's but also many folks who owned the 23, moved up to the 25'! (twin) The GT is nice for sure, but you can get your RBT with the FC model...and if your really wanting the "lounge" flexibility of the GT, you can get that done at AS Adventures in Portland/Washington shop, with a nice wrap booth/lounge area plus you can also get more storage and surface space. If you want the additional "bling" of a GT, you can easily have them customize...less money than a GT or perhaps close to same; I don't remember, but I know they do good work. Call and explore; you can see their catalog on line...life is short!
Thanks Gypsydad! We have heard the buy your second AS first. We know we will want at least a 25' when we retire but we aren't sure whether it will suit our lifestyle today. Having no issues when you pull into a campground and they only have small sites available has its pluses. We can basically put our 16' anywhere.

Hence my crisis. Buy the FC 25RBT and a new TV today and try and make it work when we haven't been able to book in advance or buy the smallest trailer that meets our needs and most of our wants now, keep our current TV, knowing we will replace both as soon as we retire.
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Old 11-25-2021, 11:20 AM   #25
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2021 25' Flying Cloud
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We bought our FC 25' RBT in Sept 2020. Our list of finalist travel trailers was very similar to yours. We already owned our 2015 F150 with max tow options. Thoughts:

1. Fiberglass options (Bigfoot, Escape, Oliver) were hard to find to see in person and wait times for new were really long. We were also worried about the width and the trailers being too narrow.
2. Lance 2075 was pretty nice. In the end we thought the Airstream quality and storage was better for our needs.
3. Airstreams - we liked the Flying Cloud for simplicity (less powered stuff) and the overall interior look. If we upgraded models it would be to the Classic.
4. 25' size - we travel light but we really like the size for towing with our F150 and usability with the two of us and our Golden Retriever. Twin beds really open up the floor plan. Outside storage excellent. Counter size was an issue so we had Woodland Airstream add a popup counter extender by the door made out of metal to match the interior walls. Looks good and is useful.
5. Negatives - not many but lounge seating not the greatest for comfort. Have had a couple of window seal leaks that have been resolved.

Good luck with your final selection!
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Old 11-25-2021, 11:46 AM   #26
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I envy those with manual awnings. Fingers crossed and other useless gestures when retracting it.

I use a cordless angle drill on my manual stabilizers. Same socket as the PPP WD jacks.

We were looking for a FC 23FB to tow with our F-150. Stumbled onto a 2017 International 25FB and canít imagine whacking off two feet. The two of us with no pets are out for three to 30 nights at a time, sometimes with a grandchild. Rarely, two grandchildren are with us so the otherwise overlong lounge comes in handy for a bed.

We like the dinette in the back because that is where the view is and we donít need the view at bedtime. The queen bed is walk-around but my side is under the overhead storage. Iím spry so it doesnít bother me. We wouldnít want the twins because we like to sleep together. But I wouldnít want that front storage (separation issues and difficult to access). Ours has a single side door for outside storage. Bagged, lightweight rugs go toward the tongue, plus never-used contingency gear such as an extra power cord (had one fail recently). Near the door we stow the bag of water gear, the bag of electrical gear, the tool bag of mostly hitching tools (OCL wrench, angle drill, thermometer outdoor sensor, a few other items).

The 25 is borderline with the F-150 but it can be done as long as you donít carry much in the bed of the truck. Plenty of pulling power. No engine braking. Too little payload for us. Our longer trips require more contingency gear (full set of tools, two brake assemblies, box of lubricants, generator, etc.) so we traded out the F-150 for the F-250. Now the PPP bars are too heavy for the more capable but stiffer F-250, and Iím trying to figure out which bars (800# vs 1000#) I need. They cost less than $300 but may prevent pricier repairs.
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Old 11-25-2021, 01:10 PM   #27
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We have a FC 23FB that we tow with a F150. It's plenty big for us. (We started with a 22 Sport, which was short on outside storage and overhead storage, plus the bed was hard to make and the AC was too loud.) Keep in mind the 25'ers are 8" wider.
I installed an extra height cap on the truck with a plywood platform 17" above the bed, that lets me slide all kinds of "maybe we'll need it" stuff under and carry our trikes, chairs and clam above.
Happy camping.
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Old 11-25-2021, 01:27 PM   #28
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Thanks for all of the feedback folks. I appreciate the AS specific advice but wouldn't mind hearing from even more people that considered other manufacturers before selecting AS.

I have been looking into the following:

Keystone Bullet Crossfire 1800RB
Gulfstream Coach Vintage Cruiser 19RBS
Sunset Park RV Sunray 199
Palomino Puma Ultra Lite 16QBX
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Old 11-25-2021, 01:41 PM   #29
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We are on our 6th Trailer and our 4th Airstream after a 5 year hiatus. The 2022 25 RBT will be our choice for moving into retirement. We have had smaller and bigger but keep coming back the 25’. Good luck with your decision.
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Old 11-25-2021, 01:45 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mattedfred View Post
I guess I'm just wondering if there is something suitable out there for our current needs and at least some wants, that is smaller, lighter, has a more durable exterior and better ground clearance than some of the trailers on our shopping list?

After reading the last paragraph in your post, I thought I'd suggest looking the specs on these Travel Trailers:

Black Series Campers

> HQ-19 caravan model

-or-

> HQ-21 caravan model



Cheers.
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Old 11-25-2021, 01:53 PM   #31
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Welcome Aboard...🇺🇸

We are on our second AS after 33 Seasons.
Hope you are as Lucky.

My best advise...go one step larger than what you believe is 'perfect' for you. AMHIK

Bob
🇺🇸
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Old 11-25-2021, 02:34 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by wv2017 View Post
After reading the last paragraph in your post, I thought I'd suggest looking the specs on these Travel Trailers:

Black Series Campers

> HQ-19 caravan model

-or-

> HQ-21 caravan model



Cheers.
Hey there, thanks for the suggestion. I had discovered them during our research. Unfortunately the HQ19 is actually 26.2' long.
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Old 11-25-2021, 04:33 PM   #33
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We have a 1977 24’ Airstream Argosy and a 2021 F-150. Did have a 2012 F-150. Both are 3.5L eco-boost engines. The trailer is so easy to pull. I think a Tacoma would easily pull it too. Your Tacoma should be big enough to pull a 25’. I would not go any smaller than a 25 footer. There is just the 2 of us and our 24’ is small at times.
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Old 11-25-2021, 05:42 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by crunch27 View Post
We have a 1977 24’ Airstream Argosy and a 2021 F-150. Did have a 2012 F-150. Both are 3.5L eco-boost engines. The trailer is so easy to pull. I think a Tacoma would easily pull it too. Your Tacoma should be big enough to pull a 25’. I would not go any smaller than a 25 footer. There is just the 2 of us and our 24’ is small at times.
You must be thinking of the Tundra. A Tacoma isn't a 1/2 ton. The towing capacity of a Tacoma is 3500 to 6800lbs.

I don't really get the issue about getting into parks, etc. I have a 28' and I'm not sure 3' is going to make much of a difference. Granted you can't get into a really small spot. But most parks have the ability to accommodate 28'. One of the reasons we went with the 28' is the lounge areas. Other sizes seemed to have the table in such a way I had to crank my neck to watch TV. We liked the lounge area.

When we were looking at campers the sales guy said if you are going to stay out a few weeks 28' and less is OK. If you want to stay out longer then 30' is the way to go. After camping I would tend to agree.

IMHO if I was planning to retire in 10 years and travel more I would be careful about going too small. An Airstream can easily last decades if taken care of. If I am going to make the kind of investment of buying a $80,000 camper I would rather spend an extra $20,000 and get the camper I wanted or knew I would probably be satisfied with in 10 years. Especially if I was a committed camper and really like traveling.

And then the issue becomes a tow vehicle. I tow my 28' with an F150 that I have set up with the ability to tow what I need. But my wife and I camp maybe 4 to 5 weeks a year. If I was going to do more traveling I would get a 3/4 ton since we would carry more stuff for a longer trip. If you envision doing a lot more traveling in the near future IMHO:
1) Get the camper you think would be best when you retire.
2) Get the tow vehicle than can tow it.

If I was thinking of a kind of "interim" use until I retire, then I might go with a cheaper yet reasonable quality camper. OR consider finding a used Airstream that is well taken care of. Then in 10 years look at something else. Who knows what 10 years brings as far as needs and desires.

Frankly, the only reason we got an Airstream is my wife felt claustrophobic in the other campers. The Airstream was the only one she could handle. Otherwise I would have considered a different camper. Although the ambience of the Airstream is clearly a plus.

On the aside, my F150 is a great daily driver.

Tough decision
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Old 11-25-2021, 06:40 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crunch27 View Post
We have a 1977 24í Airstream Argosy and a 2021 F-150. Did have a 2012 F-150. Both are 3.5L eco-boost engines. The trailer is so easy to pull. I think a Tacoma would easily pull it too. Your Tacoma should be big enough to pull a 25í. I would not go any smaller than a 25 footer. There is just the 2 of us and our 24í is small at times.
Big difference in size between anything (man, woman, child, house, truck, car, Airstream) from 1977 and 2022. My guess (no data) is that the 2022 24' is significantly heavier than the 1977 24'.

The Tacoma a not a half-ton truck; it's just a half-ton truck.
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Old 11-25-2021, 08:56 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by Daquenzer View Post
You must be thinking of the Tundra. A Tacoma isn't a 1/2 ton. The towing capacity of a Tacoma is 3500 to 6800lbs.

I don't really get the issue about getting into parks, etc. I have a 28' and I'm not sure 3' is going to make much of a difference. Granted you can't get into a really small spot. But most parks have the ability to accommodate 28'. One of the reasons we went with the 28' is the lounge areas. Other sizes seemed to have the table in such a way I had to crank my neck to watch TV. We liked the lounge area.

When we were looking at campers the sales guy said if you are going to stay out a few weeks 28' and less is OK. If you want to stay out longer then 30' is the way to go. After camping I would tend to agree.

IMHO if I was planning to retire in 10 years and travel more I would be careful about going too small. An Airstream can easily last decades if taken care of. If I am going to make the kind of investment of buying a $80,000 camper I would rather spend an extra $20,000 and get the camper I wanted or knew I would probably be satisfied with in 10 years. Especially if I was a committed camper and really like traveling.

And then the issue becomes a tow vehicle. I tow my 28' with an F150 that I have set up with the ability to tow what I need. But my wife and I camp maybe 4 to 5 weeks a year. If I was going to do more traveling I would get a 3/4 ton since we would carry more stuff for a longer trip. If you envision doing a lot more traveling in the near future IMHO:
1) Get the camper you think would be best when you retire.
2) Get the tow vehicle than can tow it.

If I was thinking of a kind of "interim" use until I retire, then I might go with a cheaper yet reasonable quality camper. OR consider finding a used Airstream that is well taken care of. Then in 10 years look at something else. Who knows what 10 years brings as far as needs and desires.

Frankly, the only reason we got an Airstream is my wife felt claustrophobic in the other campers. The Airstream was the only one she could handle. Otherwise I would have considered a different camper. Although the ambience of the Airstream is clearly a plus.

On the aside, my F150 is a great daily driver.

Tough decision
Hey there, thanks for taking the time to reply!

Three things

Regarding you not "really get the issue about getting into parks", I'm sure you'd agree this is dependent on your personal experience? If I lived in the US, had access to a wide array of large, well serviced campgrounds and was able to book well in advance I imagine I would share your sentiment. Unfortunately, up here in Canada the landscape can be very different. Owning a trailer less than 25' has clear advantages when it comes to site availability.

Next thing, surely you were aware of the fact that it would be in a sales rep's best interest to highly recommend you purchase a more expensive trailer?

Final point, we are considering a cheaper trailer as an interim trailer, hence the inclusion of the Lance, Bigfoot and Escape on our list of comparable models.
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Old 11-25-2021, 09:42 PM   #37
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2019 27' Tommy Bahama
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Originally Posted by Fungus View Post



The 25 is borderline with the F-150 but it can be done as long as you donít carry much in the bed of the truck. Plenty of pulling power. No engine braking. Too little payload for us.

How old was your F-150? We have a 2018 with the max tow package and the engine braking with tow/haul mode on downgrades has served us very well! Weíve never felt unsafe and we have a 27 with a ProPride hitch. The payload is around 1900, and yeah, it would be nice to have a little extra since the tongue weight is quite a bit higher than advertised. But we travel light so it hasnít been an issue so far. It might become one once we retire and go on longer trips.
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Old 11-25-2021, 10:59 PM   #38
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How old was your F-150? We have a 2018 with the max tow package and the engine braking with tow/haul mode on downgrades has served us very well! Weíve never felt unsafe and we have a 27 with a ProPride hitch. The payload is around 1900, and yeah, it would be nice to have a little extra since the tongue weight is quite a bit higher than advertised. But we travel light so it hasnít been an issue so far. It might become one once we retire and go on longer trips.
Your payload is much higher than mine was.

2020 F-150 Lariat with max tow. Short bed. 1610# payload on the door sticker but 1550# when weighed on the scale. So 350# less than yours. Loading up two humans, the tongue, 186# of hitch, and a few tools put us at or over payload. Only aftermarket addition was RAS. Traveling on weekends was easy. But the longer trips requiring more gear were a bit much for the F-150. We carried a lot of gear on the trailer, moving it to the truck bed at every stop. And the trailer outweighed the truck. Significant crosswinds were uncomfortable but the push from big rigs didnít bother me. You read this all the time but Iíll say it againÖwith the F-250 you forget the trailer is back there. Itís kinda boring. Not so with the F-150. Iíve driven both but not a lot. F-150 only 5000 miles of towing the AS. F-250 around 3000 miles. The F-150 needed a lot of WD tension from the PPP to get the nose down. Not so with the F-250. And ~3000# of payload now so we donít even get close. Maybe some of the differences are because Iím a little more experienced at towing now. Keeping the F-150 along with the F-250 and towing with both would have been an interesting experiment.

There are downsides though. Slightly rougher ride. Larger turning radius. Higher off the ground. Taller and longer so it might not slip into the garage. Lower gas mileage. Column shifter (ugh). I had the F-150 combined rig tuned as well as I could. Iím still dialing back the tuning on the F-250. Meaning, less WD tension, lower TV tire pressures, the aforementioned planned spring bar switch out. I look forward to getting rid of Wranglers and mounting better tires for towing.
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Old 11-26-2021, 08:39 AM   #39
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Coachman also seems to make some smaller travel trailers that might fit the bill.

Apex Nano 187RB and the Viking or Clipper Ultra-Lite 17FQ models

Appreciate any opinions on any of the non-AS trailers I've listed here and previously.

Thanks folks!
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Old 11-26-2021, 08:59 AM   #40
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2021 20' Basecamp
Los Angeles , California
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Quote:
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I guess I'm just wondering if there is something suitable out there for our current needs and at least some wants, that is smaller, lighter, has a more durable exterior and better ground clearance than some of the trailers on our shopping list?
First up, that problem with the site logging you out is really annoying.

Second, many of us have been exactly where you are and totally get it.

Third, my personal situation is a lot like yours. Similar age, similar retirement ideas/plans.

I just want to give you one small piece of advice because your journey and my own were similar.

You won't totally know until you have and use it for at least a year if it's going to work for you.

I went with a 27 Globetrotter FB Twin (highly recommend this floorplan over a walk-around) after agonizing over 23, 25, and 27 across 3 lines.

And it was fine. And it wasn't fine and I traded for a Basecamp 20x I go get today.

You really do just have to jump in feet first and figure it all out.

Everyone gave me that advice and, honestly, I didn't think that advice was super helpful and in some cases, quite annoying.

But, they were right.

If I could do it all again and re-reading your thoughts, I like a Twin Globetrotter 23 or 25 for you. Just an opinion.

I know you said you don't want to go smaller than a 25, but that fixes pretty much every "small camping spot" problem although you can stuff a 25 into almost anything.

A 27 is really 28 and as a National Park person, that's given me a hard time every so often.

Good luck!
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