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Old 06-30-2010, 08:00 PM   #1
2 Rivet Member
bella_intl's Avatar
2017 27' International
Lewes , Delaware
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 44
Airstream Wannabe

I currently own a Winnebago View, a 2007 Dodge Sprinter Chassis with a Winnebago Coach, overall length 23'. My wife and I have enjoyed this RV but feel that we need a car when we stay over more than a day or two. The problem is that we have to rent a car, not a big problem, but a hassle. We cannot tow a car with the Winnebago as the vehicle engine is pretty well maxed out with the GVW of the combined Chassis and Coach.

The reason we picked the Winnebago View was that we can drive nearly anywhere with it, backroads, mountains, cities, etc. We get good mileage, it's a diesel that gets 15 to 19 mpg, and it is reasonably reliable, both Chassis and Coach.

We have pretty much decided we would prefer to own a Trailer and a Tow Vehicle so we can drop the Trailer and have a vehicle for local travel. I have driven with trailers of many shapes and sizes and never really felt comfortable due to many bad experience with blown tires, failed bearings, broken axles, and load shifts. I am pretty much a stickler for preventive maintenance due to my long career in the Army. However, problems happen and they seem to happen to trailers that I'm towing.

I have always admired Airstream Trailers and feel that I'm ready to consider the move from the RV to an Airstream Trailer. My initial research leads my wife and I to think that a 25' trailer is the right size for us, mainly to get a full sized bed. The 23' Trailers appear to have the same drawback as our 23' RV, the bed is not comfortable for two adults. Could use some help here on right sizing.

With the above in mind, we plan to attend the RV Show in Hershey, PA this September, continue to research our options for another year, and then buy a Tow Vehicle in August 2011 and an Airstream Trailer in September 2011 at the RV Show in Hershey, PA. This plan is based on the assumption that the best price for a new Trailer can be obtained at the Hershey RV Show. Could use some help here and the best strategy for obtaining the best price on a new trailer.

The Tow Vehicles I've looked at include the GMC Yukon and the Ford Expedition. It appears these two vehicles have the proper towing capacity for a 25' Airstream. Could use some help here, I would prefer a diesel based on my Sprinter experience, but have not found a solution without going to much larger pick-ups and we prefer a closed body over a pick-up. We will be trading in my wife's Subaru Tribeca for the Tow Vehicle.

As far as the models of Airstreams are concerned, I'm pretty clueless as to the differences among the various models, International, Classic, Flying Cloud. Could use some help here on the reason to select one model over the other.

Thanks to all who waded through my introduction, and thanks ahead of time if you can offer an Airstream Wannabe some good advice.

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Old 06-30-2010, 08:30 PM   #2
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2006 19' International CCD
Olathe , Kansas
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 4,224
Images: 1
I have a 19" Bambi international and love it! I like the open feeling with the tanslucent cabinets. It feels bigger inside than the FC. Also I like the modern Ikea look. Our house is the total opposite with a craftsman style. Go to a dealer and sit in several of them. Get s feel of how they might work for you. Have fun shopping!
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Old 07-06-2010, 10:26 AM   #3
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2010 25' FB International CCD
Leesburg , Virginia
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 5
Sounds just like our situation

Hi DC. My wife and I just signed the papers on a new 25' International Serenity from Colonial Airstream in New Jersey. We go pick it up on the 17th of July.

We started out two years ago with a Winnebago 32' Voyage with 10 cylinder Ford gas engine. The space was great, but driving a bus was a pain in many places and we had to tow a car. Last year, we traded the Winnebago for a Fleetwood Icon 24' Sprinter diesel. It is a cousin of your View. We loved the size and the diesel, but we still had to tow. So, I still had two vehicles to maintain.

Since we cannot park overnight in our community (HOA rules), we keep our RV in a storage facility. That left three cars in the garage/driveway when we really only need the two. Maintenance is a chore -- oil changes, other motor work, etc. I like to do carpentry and electrical work, but buying an older Airstream and fixing it up wouldn't work for us because of the homeowner restrictions. No place to work on it.

We have always enjoyed seeing the silver bullets rolling down the highways in our travels. We went to a local RV show and wandered into the Airstreams. We were hooked! Trouble was that the local dealer only had a few models on his lot. After some searching, we discovered Colonial Airstream in Lakewood, New Jersey. We drove the 4-1/2 hours from home to their lot one Saturday and had a chance to walk through just about any model and length you could want to see. The next week, we made a deposit on one on the lot and settled last weekend.

We chose the 25' International Serenity because of the queen bed, separate shower and toilet, and nice size kitchen. We traded in my car for a Toyota Sequoia, 5.7L V8, which can pull up to 8900 lbs. We will do just like you plan and park the trailer for extended stays and drive the tow vehicle to see the sights, etc.

We plan to join a local Airstream group and hope to go on a few rallys. Maybe we will see you there soon.
2010 25' International Serenity
2010 Toyota Sequoia
WBCCI 2515, TAC VA-9
Leesburg, VA
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Old 07-06-2010, 11:11 AM   #4
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Currently Looking...
asbury park , New Jersey
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 905
are you set on a *NEW* airstream? we considered new, but felt that we could get exactly what we wanted by buying vintage and rebuilding it ourselves. it really helped me understand how all parts work and how to fix everything, since we built it ourselves. Also designed it to our specs and preferences. we tow w/ a diesel suburban BTW.

You could always hire someone like colin hyde to rebuild an old trailer for you, if that's not something you're into. I think the older trailers , when rebuilt, offer the best of both worlds - a QUALITY built vintage trailer w/ new , modern appliances and decor.
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Old 07-06-2010, 01:00 PM   #5
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Indian Harbor Beach , Florida
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 182
If you're going to an RV show, consider the 2010 models that are left over. Thats how we got our 27" International....we bought a new 2009 at the Tampa RV show this year. Our tow vehicle is a Surburban and we've been all over and back and no problems to date. If you are a tall person, consider the twin beds...they are longer.
We saved alot of money by buying the 2009! And be the last buyer on the last day of the show....that's when the deals get real good!
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Old 07-06-2010, 01:15 PM   #6
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2007 23' Safari SE
Central , Connecticut
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 1,652
Two things come to mind:

- You could get a 23FB which has the same size bed as a 25FB. (There is a lot more room in the 25FB overall, because that trailer is half-a-foot wider as well as longer than the 23FB.)

- There are folks on here who tow a 25FB with a Touareg TDI. Others are using Mercedes and BMW diesel SUVs for towing. I would wade through those posts in the tow vehicles forum before making a decision.

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