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Old 04-21-2020, 07:50 AM   #41
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2015 25' Flying Cloud
Bend , Oregon
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 741
After spending most of our lives tent camping, we had to stop as our new Husky puppy would not settle in the tent. I took pup and wife to the airstream dealer to look at a 23RB and we felt cramped, we got into a 25RB and immediately puppy laid down, stretched out and went to sleep. Manage to work out terms with the sales guy later that day. 6 years later and puppy still loves sleeping in the Airstream.
Mad Astrophysicist turned sales guy that works to fund his dirty snowboarding habbit, mwah-ha-ha . . .
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Old 04-21-2020, 08:19 AM   #42
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2012 25' FB International
Trent Woods , North Carolina
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 3,121
Originally Posted by orangekayak View Post
Hey Larry,

What specifically about your model has been disappointing? Looking to buy an airstream, and your post gave me some pause. Thanks!

Way too lengthy to answer your post. I would suggest you use "lockdown" time to search this forum for quality issues, repairs, and so on. I mean spend hours reading posts. Then assess your expectations and willingness to do the work yourself or the proximity of a good dealer and your willingness to pay.
I will give you a few disappointments here, though.
1. In less than two years my roof needed to be recaulked, not covered by warranty because it is a "wear" item. Caulk used by Airstream is inferior to many available caulks
2. My water heater electrical wiring fried. On my 25 FBQ the back of the water heater is inaccessible after construction, one must pull it from the outside to gain access. It was fried due to substandard wiring from the factory.
3. Tongue jack failed due to poor ground. Method of grounding tongue jack inadequate to prevent corrosion and loss of electrical continuity.
4. After 4 years, fresh water tank outlet broke at tank. After tank removal it was clear that Airstream method of installing fitting in plastic tank is improper. Nothing is accessible without dropping the belly pan and tank.
5. See the many threads on the shower door.

I would never, ever buy and pay the money for a new Airstream. If I needed a different model, I would only consider one that has been well-cared for by a previous owner. I must add that I am also disappointed that to get any work done at the dealer, the wait time is incredible. Best to try to save up items for work over the winter, if the failures will allow it.

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Old 04-21-2020, 11:53 AM   #43
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2014 31' Classic
2015 23' International
2013 25' FB International
Apache Junction , Arizona
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 5,708
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An independent repair facility that is approved by Airstream (like A&P Vintage Trailer Works in Paradise, mTX [near DFW airport in Dallas] that is also approved to do Airstream warranty work is the way to go. As an example, instead of replacing the lowest bidder broken cheap door/drawer catches with new cheapest plastic catches, we installed brass ball catches. The list goes on to include electrical outlets and many other parts.
WBCCI Life Member 5123, AIR 70341, 4CU, WD9EMC

TV - 2012 Dodge 2500 4x4 Cummins HO, automatic, Centramatics, Kelderman level ride airbag suspension, bed shell

2014 31' Classic model 30 twin beds, 50 amp service, 900 watt solar system, Centramatics, Tuson TPMS, disc brakes, 16" tires & wheels
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Old 04-21-2020, 05:28 PM   #44
Prairie Schooner II
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2012 30' International
1997 25' Safari
1967 20' Globetrotter
Burlington , Ontario
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 1,490
I liked the porthole window in the bathroom door. Made me think I was boating. Jim
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Old 04-21-2020, 06:11 PM   #45
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2019 27' International
Washougal , Washington
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 222
We have been camping together for 45+ years.

But my wife became disabled, and the trailer we had at the time was just too hard for her to be comfortable in. She said she 'felt trapped', and was discouraged from ever going camping in that trailer ever again.

So the hunt was on for an accessible trailer.

I visited dealer after dealer, even looking at "things" I said I'd never look at seriously, all with the idea in mind of finding her something accessible.

I worked my way up the expense ladder, finally arriving at Airstream. Bingo.

We'd always loved the look of Airstreams both inside and outside, and here was a chance to see if our dreams could finally be realized. We'd always dreamed of owning an Airstream, and here was the opportunity being handed to us.

It's only two easy steps up (instead of the four tall ones that we used to have), and everywhere there is a place to put a hand to steady oneself. Even the bathroom in our 27FB is accessible for her (an important consideration).

The travel distances between areas are easy enough for her, and with the queen bed I could put in a copy of her familiar assist bar. (It is L-shaped, with the long part sliding underneath the mattress.) My nephew and I removed the stock table, as it was restricting for her. Now we have a simple cafe' table that I strap down for travel, and it can move to where we are, for meals or games.

We initially looked at a Flying Cloud, then settled on the International Serenity. The 'why' is from an experience: When we bought the pickup, we went with cloth seats over leather. The cloth seats have been nothing but trouble: easy to stain, hold dirt too well. For all these years we've been saying, "We should have got the leather". So with the Airstream, 'we got the leather'.

We considered the cost of the Airstream, and after a few days of thinking about it, we turned to each other and said, "What good does it do to die with money in the bank? Let's have no regrets!"
2019 International Serenity 27 FB
"Live, Laugh, Love"
Click here to go to my blog: I try to add wisdom, not noise.
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Old 04-24-2020, 10:52 AM   #46
2 Rivet Member
Northeast , Ohio
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 59
I love the "we couldn't decide between 27 or 28, so we bought the 30..." route. Does solve the dilemma, but not likely what we'll do.

Still leaning toward the 27Twin, but not sure about FC or IS and itf it's worth the price... I'm also a little leery of the motorized awning.

In the 28 there's a difference between the layout of the FC and IS (overhead cabinet in former vs vista windows in latter). Are there any such differences (aside from finished and hardware) between the two in the 27?
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Old 04-24-2020, 04:04 PM   #47
3 Rivet Member
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2019 27' International
Washougal , Washington
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 222
Originally Posted by Dirtbeard View Post
... the FC and IS (overhead cabinet in former vs vista windows in latter). Are there any such differences (aside from finished and hardware) between the two in the 27?
Secondary tipping point to the IS for us was the way the overhead cabinets work. We sometimes go over rough stuff, and the way the cabinets close, plus the 'well' in the bottom to keep stuff in, was a selling point for us. In the past, we've had cabinet doors come open and came inside to find stuff all over the floor.
2019 International Serenity 27 FB
"Live, Laugh, Love"
Click here to go to my blog: I try to add wisdom, not noise.
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Old 04-26-2020, 09:28 AM   #48
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2016 Interstate Lounge Ext
Portland , Oregon
Join Date: Apr 2020
Posts: 4
Tipping Point

After a couple of decades of VW Vanagon Westphalia vans, we decided we wanted a more powerful engine, and a bathroom! Found a sweet 2011 Interstate for our first Airstream. Our other criteria was for something that drove well, Didn't want the hassle (a personal choice) of towing a trailer. Best thing ever. Upgraded to a 2016 Interstate Ext and have loved it every time we go on the road.
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Old 04-26-2020, 09:35 AM   #49
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2016 30' Classic
Houston , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 322
Originally Posted by Dirtbeard View Post
What made you decide your current AS was the unit for you? What was the tipping point - price, storage, view, layout, decor, something else?

I'm pondering the variables between 27ft or 28ft as well as Flying Cloud or International. The longer I look at 'em, the more little differences I see.

Lots of little differences, pro's here, con's there. So while I decide what variables are most important to us. What was most important to you? What was your tipping point?
We fell for the layout of the 30'Classic layout and the perceived relative 'quality' of its finishing features. Regarding size, our AS friends almost universally comment that they would prefer a longer model. Be aware that some state and national parks have a trailer length limitation that keeps or 30' unit from getting in. Even though there is usually only the two of us, having the extra personal space is a plus. Good luck.
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Old 04-26-2020, 09:37 AM   #50
New Member
Georgetown , Texas
Join Date: Feb 2020
Posts: 1
We decided on the 27FT International Serenity because of the hatch. Nothing quite like it when it open. Brings the outside in.
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Old 04-26-2020, 09:54 AM   #51
Half a Rivet Short
2017 30' Classic
Carlisle , Pennsylvania
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 10,608

We spent 50+ years looking at this and looking at that. Each time we chickened out and stuck with camping in tents. Over the years, we focused in on just about every possible option. We looked at popups. We looked at diesel pushers. We checked out everything in-between. Lots of conversation and each time the $$$ factor sent us back to tents.

What changed? We retired. Once that happened, camping went from a weekend thing plus a week or two a year to a "many months on the road" proposition. Having your "house" along is very different than a tent in the trunk. We wanted something that would work for 2 to 9 month sort of trips.

The one thing that the 40+ years of looking at this and that *did* do for us was narrowing down the field very quickly. There was no need to go see what this or that brand or type of RV looked like. We had seen examples of just about everything already. We knew the brand and type of vehicle we wanted. Which exact model .... not clear at the start.

Since we knew the brand and roughly the range of models, the rest was fairly easy. We did all the internet research and found a lot of recommendations saying 21' trailers for two full sized adults and three large dogs worked fine full time. We also found more helpful information as well.

Next step was to head over to a dealer and spend some time (like many hours) sitting in this and sitting in that. Everything 25' and under quickly went off the list (like in under 10 minutes). Once we got into the 28 to 30 foot range, things got a lot harder. The "fit" really did not rule any of them out.

What ultimately sold us on the Classic was the seating. It works for us and is comfortable. That was not as true for the other models we looked at. It's nice to say that you are camping and will never be indoors. If you are on the road for 6 months ... you will indeed spend a lot of hours in the trailer.

So a very "specific to us" decision. The only way we could make it was by actually going and sitting in the real trailers. Looking at this, trying that, seeing all of it, simply was the only way to work it all out.

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Old 04-26-2020, 10:02 AM   #52
2 Rivet Member
2018 26' Flying Cloud
Austin , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 27
Our first AS was a 2009 22 Sport. We picked it because of the large bathroom across the back. We bought it used in 2011. By 2018 making up the front bed had become tiresome. Paul also wanted two axels after a blowout. We realized we were not going to get that large a bathroom but the 26U FC came close enough. We got twin beds because Paul and I both hit our heads, cramped our feet or felt cramped in the Queen. Plus I like the dogs on the bed and he does not. They say bathrooms and kitchens sell houses, well true in trailers as well, for us anyway.
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Old 04-26-2020, 10:08 AM   #53
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2017 30' International
Middletown , Ohio
Join Date: Aug 2017
Posts: 46
30' International Serentity

When we decided to purchase an Airstream, we were looking for a 30' Flying Cloud. We thought a 30' would be a better option for longer trips, travel with our grandchildren, more storage, and liked the queen bed rear floorpan. We wanted to touch and feel one before ordering. However, at the time, they were hard to locate in stock in our area and sold at out of state dealers before we could travel to see them. While at a dealer after just missing one that sold the day before, we happened to sit in an International Serenity with a similar floorplan and my wife really took to the more relaxed decor and the added vista view window above the dinette. It all added to a more open feeling. I was concerned about losing some storage, but was convinced that the Serenity was the better option for us. 3 years later, we have plenty of storage. That is a result of thinking hard about what was necessary in dishes, pots, pans, utensils, and clothing, and paring down. We also learned to become weight conscious, which is important with any trailer. It took some time and still remove items that we now rarely use or find unnecessary. We sometimes wonder if 30' is too much, but after a trip with grandchildren, or a long trip together, or days of rain, those thoughts fade away. Tow vehicle size was not an issue for size as we already planned on a 2500 HD.
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Old 04-26-2020, 10:21 AM   #54
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2019 28' Flying Cloud
Barrington , Rhode Island
Join Date: Mar 2018
Posts: 2
Take a look at the globetrotter. The bedrooms have a padded headboard. You could contact a company like Ultimate Airstreams who could extend the headboard all alongside the walls in the bedroom. I hope to do that to ours. We went back and forth for about a year until we decided to purchase a FC 28 RBT. We did not like the bump-out sink in the 25 or 27. We have twins for more storage and longer length of bed. You can also store things like boots in the space at the end of the bed. We love having the seating area separate from the dining area. We use the dining table or a table outdoors for more prep area, as we prefer to cook outdoors when weather permits. We went from at 25b ft SOB and don't regret our decision!
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Old 04-26-2020, 11:38 AM   #55
2 Rivet Member
2014 23' FB International
Antelope , California
Join Date: Oct 2016
Posts: 35
We bought an used 23FB International three years ago, and it is perfect for 2 people. Great indoor storage, and the bathroom is wonderful. But it is not so perfect with a large dog (great pyrenees). No room for her. So eventually, we decided after visiting other trailers that a 25 would be better for us, and when a deal came up, my husband jumped on it. So tipping point for me at least was the dog factor. (Husband always wanted a 25).
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Old 04-26-2020, 12:04 PM   #56
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2010 25' FB International
Livermore , California
Join Date: Mar 2018
Posts: 60
After deciding on Airtream, then double-axle, then queen bed, we spent a day at a dealer looking at different floorplans. We loved the lounge area of the 23D but hated the bathroom/shower and knew the bed was too small. Then spend a long time trying to talk ourselves into the 23fb. Loved the bathroom, adequate bed, but hated the (non-existent) lounge area. Ultimately we decided 25 was the smallest size where we felt we didn't need to compromise. Then it was fb vs. rb, and it seemed to boil down to smaller bathroom and larger couch and more windows in the fb. On the principle of devoting more of the limited floor space to where I'd hope to be spending more of my time, and because the windows were what really drew us to AS, and because we decided the smaller bathroom in the fb was anyway adequate, we ended up with 25fbq.

Then we decided we wanted to buy used and that limited our choices. We like lighter wood and so thought we'd prefer Flying Cloud. Plus thought the backlit cabinets in the International were not a good design. Then after months of shopping, we found a 25fbq International Serenity and decided to go for it. In the end we use the in-cabinet lights for most of our lighting since they're less harsh. Who knew. 2 years in and no regrets on any of these choices.
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Old 04-26-2020, 12:14 PM   #57
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2019 28' International
Elgin , SC
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 2
We are full time in a 28 Serenity. The camp side windows were the deciding factor for selecting the 28. We wanted to be able to see out the camp side of the Airstream and have the panoramic view up front.
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Old 04-26-2020, 12:16 PM   #58
2014 19' Flying Cloud
Austin , Texas
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 5

My dream AS was my first airstream a 16 foot Bambi. Beautifully designed and just perfect for two adventuresome retirees heading out to see North America. After traveling thousands of miles and 10months later I trader her for a 19 only to get separate holding tanks
I’ve never bonded with my 19 like I did my first but I love separate holding tanks
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Old 04-26-2020, 12:31 PM   #59
1 Rivet Member
2010 23' FB Flying Cloud
Alexandria , Kentucky
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 15
Decision Point

There were two decision points that swung me to my current 23' Flying Cloud.

1. Smallest Airstream that I could purchase with two axles. I've driven trailers for many years, and had two accidents. The first accident was on a boat trailer and the right wheel on a single axle gave way. It was in Alaska, and it was all I could do to keep the unit on the road. Frightening since there was little to no shoulder and a 500 foot drop on the road between Delta and Valdez. I never did find the wheel...and was flatbedded to Delta for a fix.

Very lucky that none of us were killed.

The second accident came after I overloaded the trailer the week prior. Driving home in -20 degrees, the right trailer wheel came apart. Thank heavens it did, because it was dragging me toward another cliff!

Yes...Alaska is a unique place, but these problems convinced me that I would never drive a single axle again.

2. I bought my Airstream, a 2010 model, in 2015. It has no storage area, but is very pleasant for the two of us. It also gives me an excuse to not have grandchild sleepovers since it is too small for more than 2 human beings. If you need extra space, get the largest unit your money can buy. None of them are incredibly spacious, but the smaller two axle units (23', 25') are just not large enough to live in.

2010 23' FB Flying Cloud
2015 Chevy Silverado LTZ
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Old 04-26-2020, 01:02 PM   #60
3 Rivet Member
1976 31' Excella 500
Crewe , Virginia
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 108
Our 76 Excella 500

We are a family of 8 and a Newfie who enjoyed many trips in our 98 Coleman Grandview SE pop up, but out grew as the kids got older. Many evening walks through the Campgrounds while looking at different makes and models and lots of pipe dreams led us to look for an Airstream. We looked for the past 5 years and finally found our perfect solution......a 76’ AS Excella 500. She is 31’ of classic 70’s decor, dents, and faded plastic. The stories of adventure she could tell. The center bathroom model with rear twin beds is the perfect platform to convert into a double triple stack bunk living space while not altering the classic design. She is a work progress. Upgraded power source, LED through out, replaced yellowed light fixtures and even the 8 track tape player still works. I post a little bit of progress on it every now and then. For you folks who watch YouTube, search “dadofsix” and enjoy the family project come together
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