RV News RVBusiness 2021 Top 10 RVs of the Year, plus 56 additional debuts and must-see units → ×
 


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 10-24-2020, 10:29 AM   #1
New Member
 
2021 25' Flying Cloud
Bentonville , AR
Join Date: Oct 2020
Posts: 2
How rough a road can a 25 flying cloud handle?

Hey all, new to pulling a trailer and airstreams in general. We just ordered a 25ft flying closed and wondering how crazy is it to take this thing off the beaten path? I want to be able to boondock on BLM etc. Would it be crazy to get the lift kit and take this on some less than perfect roads? Would a 20ft trailer handle better?
Ekremm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-24-2020, 10:49 AM   #2
2 Rivet Member
 
2015 25' Flying Cloud
Tucson , Arizona
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 59
Welcome to the forum! Boondocking is a very common practice for Airstreamers. If possible, scout ahead before taking your trailer down an unknown road. There are many apps that can help you get a feel for an area and find out what size of rigs the road can handle. You never know what you might come across, especially as you get more remote. We boondock with our 25' and so far haven't had any issues with driving on dirt/bumpy/less than stellar roads. Slow and steady wins the race!
McStreamy_ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-24-2020, 03:03 PM   #3
Rivet Master

 
2019 25' Flying Cloud
Hendersonville , North Carolina
Join Date: Aug 2017
Posts: 697
25' AS offroad

Install the lift kit. Better safe than sorry. We have a 2019 FC25' RBT and I installed the lift kit before trying to bring it up my steep driveway with a swale at the bottom. No change in towing. Still feels rock solid. I did readjust my Equalizer WD anti sway hitch to match the increased height.

Some dealers will not install lift kit. It is approved by AS and does not effect warranty. Dealer install should be around $1k. I did my own for just the cost of the lift kit from Dexter. Under $300.00. You should be pretty handy with a wrench and watch some instructional videos before attempting install. Took me all of a Saturday. I could install another one in a couple hours less.
uraljohn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-24-2020, 03:24 PM   #4
Rivet Master
 
tjdonahoe's Avatar
 
2013 31' Classic
billings , Montana
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 2,738
The rough roads will shorten the life...the body is the frame...rivets will become loose...
tjdonahoe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-24-2020, 03:37 PM   #5
Rivet Master
 
RivetED's Avatar
 
2004 25' Safari
2018 26' Flying Cloud
2019 25' Flying Cloud
North Central Texas , USA
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 816
Quote:
Originally Posted by McStreamy_ View Post
< Snip > ...We boondock with our 25' and so far haven't had any issues with driving on dirt/bumpy/less than stellar roads. Slow and steady wins the race!
Ditto. Good Advice.

I've been thinking about a lift kit for quite a while but I don't have an immediate need.

I wonder if J. C. would do the Lift-Kit install? I'll need to have a couple of items taken care of while still under warranty and will be there in early '21.
__________________
-Ed
RivetED is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-24-2020, 04:35 PM   #6
Rivet Master
 
2002 19' Bambi
Lafayette , California
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,137
Try searching for Ray Ekland Boondocking (using the Air Forums search function) and you should find lots of good information about boondocking with an Airstream.

Tim
Tim A. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-24-2020, 08:05 PM   #7
3 Rivet Member
 
2013 25' International
Boise , Idaho
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 178
Yes, your 25 can go off road. The lift is a good idea, you might not NEED it but you'll be happy to have it when you are climbing and descending steeper stuff on the dirt. Of all the upgrades I've done, its the most essential for me.

The key is being smart and more often than not going slow. My trailer spends probably 50 nights a year on BLM land. Often 10+ miles down dirt roads, sometime with pretty bad washboards. You should expect to find some rivet heads on the floor, fix/refix/replace the hinges on the heavier cabinet doors with piano hinges, sweep up saw dust after long dirt roads, just know you aren't the first to do this. I think you'll find that after the lift, the real limitation is the electrical system. If you love the AS and you love to boondock, you might as well start saving for a good solar and lithium setup if you can. Many of us have done a whole host of upgrades that you can read about for months. This is why.

Keep reading and posting and dreaming. The airstream isn't the ideal boondocking trailer but you can get it to be pretty dang good with some patience, learning and some smart upgrades.
afk314 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2020, 11:18 AM   #8
Married with Airstream
 
drbrick's Avatar

 
2004 25' International CCD
Vancouver Island , British Columbia
Join Date: Apr 2018
Posts: 619
Images: 5
One of the issues we have had is that the overhead cabinets are simple screwed into the alum sheet metal with no backing. We had the front cabinet let go from 4 of its 6 screws. We never carry anything heavy in the front upper cabinet and now really slow down on washboard, gravel, pothole forestry roads. I am talking 20MPH here.
__________________
La Dolce Vita Brick & Mona
We're Married With Airstream
2004 International 25CCD Registered Name "Blue Streak"
2013 F-150HD FX4 SuperCrew Lariart (MaxTow) "Red Dragon"
drbrick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2020, 11:37 AM   #9
2 Rivet Member
 
2014 28' Flying Cloud
Raleigh , North Carolina
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 21
We took our 28" FC "off road" due to a navigation error. The road turned out to be 15 miles of washboard..... We thought we were fine until we noticed a gap
between the refrigerator and the top cabinet.

Turns out the refrigerator was shaken OFF the internal bracket, and dropped 2 inches in the front. NOT GOOD. We had to bridge it up with 2 x 4's and limp it to a dealer for repairs. We also developed a water leak from under the shower.
After a lot hunt and peck, we found a crack in the city water inlet valve from all the vibration.

Boondocking is great fun, but be prepared for "incidentals".
silverkiwi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2020, 11:48 AM   #10
Rivet Master
 
banderabob's Avatar
 
2008 19' Bambi
2012 23' Flying Cloud
Bandera , Texas
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 567
As someone else said, scout the location before you drive it with the trailer. Youíll know whether or not itís a wise trail to traverse, lift kit or not. Personally, on lift kits, someone noted on a similar prior discussion, ďif Wally didnít have it in Africa, do you need it now?Ē
banderabob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2020, 12:16 AM   #11
4 Rivet Member
 
Life is a Highway's Avatar

 
2018 25' Flying Cloud
2019 25' Flying Cloud
Lady Lake , Florida
Join Date: Mar 2018
Posts: 381
JC does install lift kits, Our neighbor in the Terra-port had his 30 lifted.
Life is a Highway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2020, 09:50 AM   #12
4 Rivet Member
 
1976 31' Excella 500
Chappell Hill , Texas
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 449
Images: 1
Lift kit for sure. Lower tire pressure to around 35-45 on rough roads to help absorb jars. Go SLOW. Air back up before you get on the highway. Have fun.
tbashin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2020, 10:06 AM   #13
Rivet Master
 
aftermath's Avatar
 
2006 25' Safari FB SE
Spokane , Washington
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 1,455
Quote:
Originally Posted by banderabob View Post
As someone else said, scout the location before you drive it with the trailer. Youíll know whether or not itís a wise trail to traverse, lift kit or not. Personally, on lift kits, someone noted on a similar prior discussion, ďif Wally didnít have it in Africa, do you need it now?Ē

There is Boondocking and then there is Boondocking. Some say they boondock when the pull into a site that does not have full hookups. Some say driving down a gravel road is boondocking. I had a tent trailer that I would drag through a field to get to a lake, that is boondocking. I moved up(?) to a hybrid trailer and pulled it up logging roads to get to a DNR campground. The road in was steep, often rutted, always washboarded in places and narrow with tree limbs growing into the roadway. The Hybrid had a very low sewer outlet that concerned me. I never had trouble with it even in the worst conditions. I do not pull my 25FB up that road mainly because I don't want the sides all scratched by the trees. You really do need to know where you are going to be "boondocking".



Extreme boondocking with an Airstream to me is like taking a new Corvette, putting a lift kit on it, throwing on some oversized off road tires and driving it into the boonies. On the other hand, I would drive my Vette down a dirt road if it wasn't too severe.
aftermath is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2020, 01:56 PM   #14
The Aluminum Tent 3
 
pcskier's Avatar
 
2014 23' Flying Cloud
Park City , Utah
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 1,707
How rough a road can a 25 flying cloud handle?

Get a lift kit. Through-bolt as many hinge bases as you can. Get heavier duty cabinet and drawer latches. Through-bolt the four microwave screws. Doesn't all need to be done first, but YMMV.

Then get out there and enjoy! BLM land rules, campgrounds drool (for me anyway.)
Click image for larger version

Name:	Adjustments.JPG
Views:	19
Size:	426.8 KB
ID:	381895
Click image for larger version

Name:	Adjustments.jpg
Views:	19
Size:	281.2 KB
ID:	381894
pcskier is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2020, 08:32 AM   #15
2 Rivet Member
 
2013 25' Flying Cloud
Middleton , Idaho
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 96
We have a 2013 25FC that we boondocked with quite a bit, before and after installing a lift. The lift was the best upgrade we have made to date, not only to open up more campsites, but also to minimize scraping going in and out of fuel stops. I haven't noticed any downsides to this upgrade.
Trailbob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2020, 09:03 AM   #16
4 Rivet Member
 
2019 22' Sport
2020 23' Flying Cloud
Sebastian , Florida
Join Date: Nov 2019
Posts: 280
I’ve been called out for not being a “real” camper in the past, because of my limited boondocking experience, but I would be more worried about being able to get turned around. As others have mentioned, you can always slow down to reduce the impacts. A three point turn in the wilderness can make a grown man cry...
Does anyone use a drone for scouting?
__________________
-Don
(That man in that tiny can)
(Same man, Bigger can)
GetawA-S is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2020, 09:04 AM   #17
4 Rivet Member
 
2019 22' Sport
2020 23' Flying Cloud
Sebastian , Florida
Join Date: Nov 2019
Posts: 280
Oops, duplicate post
GetawA-S is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2020, 11:34 AM   #18
4 Rivet Member
 
Mikebrady62's Avatar

 
2019 27' International
Rogers , Arkansas
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 297
Hey Neighbor,
As others have said; get a lift kit installed for sure. Heavier door latches. Our only one that has a problem is out bathroom mirror cabinet, so add another or get a heavier latch. Our upper cabinets all have the sliding glass type fronts and the drawers have never been open for us anyway. Our microwave is in a slide out drawer and has always stayed closed. For sure shake all your cabinets to make sure they are all sturdy. If not add more screws or better yet as PCSKIER mention, through bolt them or anything else that feels loose. Have fun and travel safe!
Mikebrady62 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2020, 12:15 PM   #19
Rivet Master
 
2007 27' International CCD FB
San Diego , California
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 1,567
Definitely doable. Clearance is a requirement particularly for longer trailers like a 25 where even minor dips can bottom out the ends of the trailer. Lift will bring up both ends, including hitch and tail

Some other modifications
1) Tow vehicle
- 4WD or 4x4
- Compliant spring rates - HD trucks or those with very high spring rates contribute to a harsh ride for the trailer.
- Airing down tires
- Relax WD bars
- Shorter wheelbase for maneuverability
2) Trailer
- 15" wheels with taller sidewall tires. Avoid 16" wheels that many have upgraded to
- Upsize tires for slightly more lift and sidewall/compliance, 235/75R15
- Air down tires
__________________
Boondocking Rig: '07 27FB Ocean Breeze "See Turtle"
Lexus LX570 on 33's - $1k 300Ah Lithium Upgrade - Tongue Mount Honda eu2200i - Rear Hitch - Underbelly Storage - Blizzard NXT w/ EasyStart - 3" Lift
pteck is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-28-2020, 12:41 AM   #20
2 Rivet Member
 
2018 30' Flying Cloud
Anchorage , Alaska
Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 97
What it looks like when your pantry door comes open somewhere on the hours of forest service road you drove down and everything is covered in salt and rosť
Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_0529.JPG
Views:	18
Size:	833.8 KB
ID:	382063
AKNate is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Inside the trailer while on Rough Road chugchug On The Road... 1 08-12-2019 04:59 PM
new handle of door-preserve existing handle waninae39 Windows, Doors, Locks & Vents 0 05-11-2019 08:48 PM
Bad axles, rough road, bent frame Lumatic Axles 0 05-21-2007 09:24 PM
Very rough finish lenny Cleaning, Stripping & Polishing 9 11-11-2002 06:42 PM


Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Airstream, Inc. or any of its affiliates. Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:49 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.