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Old 03-06-2015, 01:34 PM   #21
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1969 25' Tradewind
Shasta Lake , California
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Consider that full time means year round living in a trailer, summer, winter, spring and fall weather.

Airstream : Spring and Fall Great.
Summer : in the shade Good , full sun Not so good HOT big a/c unit to keep
warm.
Winter : COLD lots of propane to keep warm.

Bigfoot : year round Great

Casita : spring, summer and fall Great, winter not so good

Escape : year round : Great

Oliver : year round : Good

Also consider the Big Foot, Casita and Escape hold their near full value for years.

We've had 3 Casitas , 1999 17' Casita Freedom Deluxe bought new. Sold for $1000 less then we paid for it the same day we took deliver of our new 2004 17' Casita Liberty Deluxe . Sold in 2012 for $1000 less then we paid for it a week after we bought a 1969 25' Airstream Tradewind .

That was a big mistake ! I should have kept the Casita until this Tradewind is done.
We paid $5500 for it and by the time I'm done with it we'll have $30,000 in it.

Oh and in 2008 we bought a 2001 13' Casita Patriot Deluxe which I had to replace the axle and have the exterior buffed out at a boat shop . The poor thing had been stored outside in the Nevada desert and taken to La Paz a few times. We still have it and use it for short trips.
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Glen & Jane 1969 all electric Airstream 25' TradeWind
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Old 03-06-2015, 01:54 PM   #22
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Ask Yourself: why are all these people recommending SOBs on Air Forums? Sal
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Old 03-06-2015, 02:11 PM   #23
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A friend of ours wanted to sell her condo and go full timing in a RV.

We and a few other friends talked her out of selling her condo and instead rent it out thus keeping her equity and getting some income. So she did that but kept the thought of an RV.

We suggested she get a Casita or a Bigfoot but she didn't want to tow anything so she got a LazyDaze 26' class C motor home.

Her thought was to drive around the country and spend the winter at her sons house in her RV in Michigan , Silly California girl !

Well she made her way to MI in the fall and with the first cold wave she forgot about MI and headed south for the winter.

As time went on she found herself work camping and not traveling very much.

Another problem for her was once she was in camp she only had her racing bike to get around on. So getting supplies required begging a ride

Well as luck would have it for her we had just built a new vacation house about a mile from her condo and suggested that we store/use her furniture instead of her having to pay for storage. She went for it.

About the 3rd year of her being on the road she was getting tired of it. So we suggested that she stay in our vacation house until we decide to sell it. She sold her LazyDaze and stayed 3 years for free and in the meantime here condo was generating income.

When we listed our vacation house she gave her tenant notice, and they moved out leaving her time to remodel and move in.

She did take a big loss when she sold the Motor Home.
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Old 03-06-2015, 02:13 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by westcoastas View Post
After having just finished up three months of camp hosting, I can say I saw quite a few Casitas and they appeared quite nice. I'm not familiar with the other smaller trailers but I will recommend you try to get a small trailer rather than an RV. One of the best ways to get by is to find jobs at campgrounds - it paid our rent. But being able to detach is a lot better when you have to go grocery shopping or take time to explore. I would see people have to detach their umbilical cords each time they would venture outside of their spot. So I would pay up front and go for the flexibility.
Seems to me, all of them are "RV's. Some people have the mistaken thought that only motorhomes are RV's. Class A, B, B+, and C, are motorhomes.

Then we have 5th wheels, and trailer trailers.


Different strokes for everybody. We've owned Airstreams for years, and a couple of SOB's also, but we always came back to Airstream..
For whatever it's worth.

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Old 04-19-2015, 12:22 PM   #25
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Greetings, friends,

Every post on this thread had a helpful impact on my decision-making process, and I cannot thank you enough. After much more research into molded fiberglass trailers, I finally did decide to order a new 17' Casita Spirit Deluxe. I will pick it up in Rice, Texas, on July 13 (could have been sooner, but I opted not to store it for an extra month before I leave Minnesota). After ordering almost all the options, the total came to under $20,000, an outstanding price, IMHO!

I gave a lot of thought to the Scamps, but availability, price and layout led me to Casita. In the end, I chose to order something new, since in order to buy used, I would have to act very quickly and drive a long way to get an unknown quantity for close to the same price as new. So in mid-July I'll be on my shakedown cruise from Rice to Wayzata!

Now I'm going through the same process to buy a tow vehicle. At this moment I believe I'll get a used pickup with crew cab, tonneau, tow package, 8 cylinders and reasonably low miles. This time I really can't buy new. If you have one you want to sell, please PM me.

Every one of you who participated in this thread was instrumental in shaping the rest of my life, and I am extremely grateful. If it's OK, I'll continue to lurk on your forum, but this will be the last of my participation as an Airstream seeker. But the connection to you will remain in my heart.

Wendy of Wayzata for 4.5 more months...
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Old 04-19-2015, 12:54 PM   #26
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Congratulations, Wendy!

My parents owned several travel trailers over the years, progressing from a 19' Nomad through 27' Airstream, then 34' Avion...... then, as they aged, they went back down to a 23' Coachmen, then finally to a Casita. They LOVED that Casita, and I got to see it up close and personal. I really liked the features, and for not-overly-large people, thye work nicely.

Good luck on your truck quest.

Keep up posted.
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Old 04-19-2015, 01:38 PM   #27
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Congratulations, Wendy! You did the research and found the rig that seems best suited to your needs now. In a year or two you will have more experience under your belt and you may see that you need to make a change. Do so. Many full-timers go through several coaches before getting it exactly right. That's why there are so many recommendations to buy used first.

Now that you have your trailer (or at least it is on order) you should be able to have some reasonably accurate numbers to work with. Unless the factory is doing something really special for you, the gross weight should be easy enough to find. You will need that number plus the weight of the loaded truck to determine whether your truck is capable of towing your trailer. With such a light trailer, that shouldn't be too hard. Tongue weight should be about 10-15% of gross, so just use the 15% for now. That's the weight the rear axle has to carry in addition to whatever you have in the bed of the truck. Again, shouldn't be much of an issue. Don't skimp on the tow vehicle, but don't go overboard, either. I would think that most half-ton pickups (F150-class) should be able to handle your trailer, but check the numbers anyway. Don't believe the salesman. Go to a dealer for the brand of truck you are considering and have them pull up the VIN to find out what towing capabilities it actually has.

Don't forget a weight distributing hitch with anti-sway capability. Have the dealer show you how to hitch up properly. You want to be towing with the truck level and the trailer level. That may mean a drop hitch, which is fine.
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Old 04-20-2015, 07:29 AM   #28
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Congrats Wendy

The 17' Casitas have a gross weight of 3500 # With a tongue weight of about 450#. Both of our's loaded for travel came in at 3250 #.

As for a Tow Vehicle I recommend one with at least a 5000 # tow capacity . This opens up a lot more then just a pick up to you. But don't go too small. We used a '98 Tahoe 2 door 2 wheel drive with 7500 # tow rating to pull our 3 Casitas and it worked out great for us .

Now that your leaving the AS forums Check out A Home for Casita Travel Trailer Owners and Casita Travel Trailer Forum where you can download a great owners manual the Gene put together , also check out The Fiberglass RV Community .

There is a great wealth of info and ideas on those forums . See ya there
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Old 04-20-2015, 08:10 AM   #29
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I used to have a 2009 17' Casita Sprit Deluxe. The Casita forums shows lots of mods. The first mod I did was to get rid of the closet valve that shuts off the gray water tank from the shower.

Just up the road from Rice on the shores of Lake Fork near Emory, TX is Larry Gamble who has a small company, Little House Customs, that provides service and parts for Casitas. Great person to meet. He has a shop on his property and can install all the stuff he sells. If the work requires more than one day you can sleep in your Casita in his shop or outside on a couple of pads he's constructed.

https://littlehousecustoms.com/

Kelvin
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Old 04-20-2015, 08:14 AM   #30
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Casitas are only purchased from the factory when new if I am not mistaken. Peace,jim
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Old 04-20-2015, 11:25 AM   #31
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Quote:
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Congrats Wendy

As for a Tow Vehicle I recommend one with at least a 5000 # tow capacity . This opens up a lot more then just a pick up to you. But don't go too small. We used a '98 Tahoe 2 door 2 wheel drive with 7500 # tow rating to pull our 3 Casitas and it worked out great for us .
I've got to agree that a Tahoe would be a sweet tow vehicle. There are a lot of good used ones out there and an SUV like a Tahoe has several advantages - ONE is that you don't have to buy a lot of extra stuff like a bed liner, bed slide, tonneau cover/cap. Access for a vertically challenged individual is easier than for a truck - Side doors and rear doors (I'd get a 4 door & I prefer the barn doors to the tailgate, but that's just me). With the barn doors you don't have problems with the tailgate hitting the tongue jack. The ride is more car like, running boards are probably standard - but few come with towing mirrors or a brake controller. Those aren't necessarily horribly expensive.

Also a Tahoe - while not an economy car is more flexible than a truck (if you unload enough stuff) it can carry 5-6 adults - so any rally camping you'll be a popular driver. It does get better mileage than a Suburban.
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Old 04-21-2015, 07:02 PM   #32
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KELVIN, I've already been in touch with Little House Customs and with RV Widgetworks! But now that you remind me, I'm going to check the list of businesses to see if there are more people with good ideas.

JIM from Alachua County (Go Gators!), yes, I'll be picking up my new Casita in Rice, Texas.

Thanks, all!
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Old 04-21-2015, 09:21 PM   #33
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Last September I realized the rest of my life was calling, and it would not be stationary. The decision to buy an RV was easy when seeing the wild parts of the country became far more important than clinging to my stuff, which had become an anchor...
I just want to say that this is so beautifully put! I feel this way every day, but I have to work a bit longer before I can plan my escape. Good luck in your travels!
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