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Old 02-15-2024, 04:52 PM   #1
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Swapping Convection Microwave for Propane Oven?

We do not currently own an Airstream but are looking seriously at several candidates.

One candidate is very appealing in all respects except that it is equipped with a convection microwave whereas we prefer a propane oven.

Our question concerns the difficulty of swapping (back) to a combination propane stove/oven? I say “back” because this trailer had been originally equipped with a propane stove/oven, but the current owner recently installed a new convection microwave instead.

Another question concerns whether replacement stove/ovens are readily available, and suggested brands/models?

Thanks for any feedback.
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Old 02-15-2024, 07:06 PM   #2
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BikeCamper, welcome to the Airstream Community and Forums!

You're lucky that the trailer had a gas stove originally. It makes installing another much easier.

Looking at newer Airstreams, they seem to like the Furrion line. Our Globetrotter came with a Dometic gas oven and range but if it dies, I'd consider a Furrion.

eTrailer has a nice selection of them.

Good luck with whatever you choose!
-Jeff
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Old 02-16-2024, 04:44 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffmc306 View Post
BikeCamper, welcome to the Airstream Community and Forums!

You're lucky that the trailer had a gas stove originally. It makes installing another much easier.

Looking at newer Airstreams, they seem to like the Furrion line. Our Globetrotter came with a Dometic gas oven and range but if it dies, I'd consider a Furrion.

eTrailer has a nice selection of them.

Good luck with whatever you choose!
-Jeff
Thank you for the welcome and the reply. The link to the Furrion stoves is very helpful.👍

I would still be interested to hear from anyone who has swapped out a convection microwave for a propane oven, or even just swapped an older oven for a newer one. Just trying to get a sense for how tricky of a job it is.
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Old 02-16-2024, 05:55 AM   #4
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I just went through something similar recently. My trailer came with the LP cooktop and convection microwave. We boondock a fair amount, and have had stove/ranges for as far back as I can remember.

For me, they (factory service center) simply cut or replaced the cabinet (I haven't gotten the trailer back yet) and dropped in the stove/oven. The gas and power were already there.

I had them install the Furrion oven since the fancy one they put in the Classics I read here had a lot of common/regular problems, hard to fix, etc. Here is what they charged:

1.00 0.00 1,351.57 3 BURNER RANGE W/OVEN FURRION
LABOR EA 6.00 6.00 0.00 159.00 LABOR RATE 954

Not inexpensive at around $2300, but I had it there and it took a factory worker 6 hours to do the swap out, and if I did it, no doubt it'd been a few days and who knows how many parts I'd have to replace because I cut the wrong thing or scratched something.....so I took it as a sunk cost and let it ride. So now I have both the cooktop/oven and the convection microwave. Not sure which unit you are looking at, but my convection microwave is to the right of the cooktop/oven. If yours is in the space where the over would go, your results and costs could be different, but at least you have a baseline.
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Old 02-16-2024, 06:36 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfranklin View Post
I just went through something similar recently. My trailer came with the LP cooktop and convection microwave. We boondock a fair amount, and have had stove/ranges for as far back as I can remember.

For me, they (factory service center) simply cut or replaced the cabinet (I haven't gotten the trailer back yet) and dropped in the stove/oven. The gas and power were already there.

I had them install the Furrion oven since the fancy one they put in the Classics I read here had a lot of common/regular problems, hard to fix, etc. Here is what they charged:

1.00 0.00 1,351.57 3 BURNER RANGE W/OVEN FURRION
LABOR EA 6.00 6.00 0.00 159.00 LABOR RATE 954

Not inexpensive at around $2300, but I had it there and it took a factory worker 6 hours to do the swap out, and if I did it, no doubt it'd been a few days and who knows how many parts I'd have to replace because I cut the wrong thing or scratched something.....so I took it as a sunk cost and let it ride. So now I have both the cooktop/oven and the convection microwave. Not sure which unit you are looking at, but my convection microwave is to the right of the cooktop/oven. If yours is in the space where the over would go, your results and costs could be different, but at least you have a baseline.
Thanks for that - - it’s helpful info.

Can I ask for some clarification on this statement: “I had them install the Furrion oven since the fancy one they put in the Classics I read here had a lot of common/regular problems, hard to fix, etc”

I take it “the fancy one they put in the Classics” is a different brand than Furrion? Or did you mean they put a fancy model of Furrion in the Classics?

We are looking at smaller single-axle trailers that normally have an either/or option when it comes to the stove/oven combo. (As opposed to larger models that offer space for both.) So the near-new convection microwave/stove would be completely removed and replaced by a standard propane stove/oven. If we purchase this trailer I am hoping there would be a market to re-sell the convection microwave unit.
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Old 02-16-2024, 08:02 AM   #6
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Me again, I forgot I had some photos of when I removed our Globetrotter’s stove to access a wire chase in the floor. It might not apply to your situation but it will give you an idea of what it looks like.

There’s only a handful of screws on each side, 2-3 on each door side and 3 on the top per side. Once I removed the screws I was able to pull the stove forward enough to disconnect the propane line and electrical connections. The unit is light enough for one person to lift.

The whole removal process took me under 20 minutes. If you’re moderately handy, it’s a job you can do yourself if it’s a combination range/oven.

Good luck!
Jeff

PS: I saw your other post and the replies from GOUSC and Hans627. I met both of them on AirForums and we’ve become good friends. Great folks here!
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Old 02-16-2024, 08:06 AM   #7
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Sure thing...

Airstream puts in (or did) a Dometic CU-434. They may even put that same oven in other trailers near the orbit of the Classic.

Most of the entry and midrange trailers get the Furrion stove/oven or cooktop. Though it may not be completely accurate in terms of oven temps, the Furrion is more reliable and less problematic from what I've read on this forum.

I will say that the Dometic CU-434's problems and shortcomings seem pretty common on a number of the RVing forums I read. It's shame because it is a very aesthetically pleasing looking oven and blends in well with the Airstream "motif".

Do a search from your favorite browser and type in Dometic CU-434 problems, grab some popcorn and happy reading.
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Old 02-16-2024, 09:04 AM   #8
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Since you originally had a gas stove, range combo there your plan should work out just fine. I have a much older trailer and just replaced my propane oven/stove with a new one. I did it myself and went with a new “Furion like” one that I found on RecPro. The only difference I have found is the way the lit control knobs function. They are either on or off by turning on the oven light. On the Furion, if the burner is lit the knob turns red. Mine is either on or off, no red option. I also read that the oven temp needs to be monitored on the Furion. I don’t know this to be true but I did check mine and the actual temp reading was within 5 degrees of the knob reading.
Take a look at RecPro. You can also find all the dimensions there and then compare them to what you know about your current stove. My only concern was finding a 12v source to tap into to run the lights. There are many options for this and a previous post mentioned it. Good Luck
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Old 02-16-2024, 09:35 AM   #9
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I have swapped out convention ovens for propane in a 2010 FC 25' and 2016 Int Ser 30'. Neither was much of problem. In the 2016 I had to add some side spacer to fill the gap - no big effort. Since both units had gas cooktops, the gas lines were already there and you just unhook range and hook up the oven. Very simple.

We did the swap for the same reason you are thinking about. Boondocking and wanting to bake potatoes or pizza. Without a generator, the convention oven is useless.
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Old 02-16-2024, 10:02 AM   #10
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We bought a 2017 FC 19'CB new. When we were close to making our deal, I found one that was just what we wanted except it had the convection microwave. I told them if they could make the swap, we'd buy it. They did. The fit isn't perfect, but not enough to fret about. I don't know if it was pre piped for propane, so the fact that yours is should make it easy. Living without a microwave is easy, living without an oven is something I can't imagine. If you boondock at all, this makes sense. Can't speak about availability. Good luck!
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Old 02-16-2024, 10:14 AM   #11
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I was a little jazzed seeing this thread. Our off the RV lot 2023 GT came with the convection/microwave option and since we don't plug in that often, I think we would have preferred a gas oven, so I can bake brownies in the wilderness like the OP. I can confirm Airstream uses Furion as a cooktop in the new models which we like a lot. With ours the C/M is a separate unit (Contoure) and wider than the cooktop, so for us it's not like sliding in a new unit, so anyways...

That said, I don't know that it's that big of a deal if the candidate trailer checks all the other boxes, get it and see how much you might use a gas oven. We've managed so far.
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Old 02-16-2024, 01:28 PM   #12
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Unless the prior owner told you otherwise, don’t assume the microwave dropped in place without any carpentry modifications.

Regardless, take accurate measurements of the opening before you make any purchase. Like the old adage”measure twice, cut once”

As an aside, since you are still looking, be aware that older 25’ rear bed (up until they started installing electric only refrigerators) had the option of installing both. We have one and love the flexibility. Of course, there is the front bed vs rear bed argument.


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Old 02-20-2024, 01:04 PM   #13
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THANK YOU to all respondents. The information you collectively provided is extremely helpful.
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Old 02-20-2024, 01:12 PM   #14
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Our “candidate” trailers are the smaller variety, 19-22’ with a focus on the 19’ model. So it’s definitely either/or when it comes to convection-microwave or propane oven. We don’t anticipate being connected to shore power very often, and prefer to avoid carrying a generator if possible. Plus we do a fair bit of baking. So the propane oven is what we want.

I mentioned how one candidate had been converted from propane oven to convection microwave. Another leading contender came from the factory with the conv-microwave. Based on comments above, it sounds like this conversion could be trickier but also do-able?
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Old 02-21-2024, 11:29 AM   #15
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We have a 2020 FC 30 and have camped with it in all 48 states. It came with the convection microwave oven. We’ve used it a lot and really like it. My wife has even baked bread in it.
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Old 02-21-2024, 11:50 AM   #16
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I changed out mine and went to rec pro for a new stovetop/oven. Easy replacement especially if the propane line and the 12 V line, if you want lights, is still hooked up and available.
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Old 02-21-2024, 12:20 PM   #17
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We FT in our 30’ signature and I opted not to have a propane oven as I wanted the additional storage space. We have heard from fellow ASers who have the propane oven that it can be very finicky with steady baking temps. I had a convection/microwave in our 22’ sport and I baked everything in it including artisan bread like David in Lex does. Because of that I went with the Contoure in the 30’ and have never regretted it. If we boondock, we have a Weber grill that we do sheet pan dinners and skillet dishes no problem. Because of the domed lid, I have done focaccia in the grill with great results. With the propane stove, I have found I’ve had to adjust cooking times because propane seems to burn a bit hotter than natural gas ( at least in my experience) so be aware that may also factor in your baking times. My son has an SOB with a propane oven and he bought a rectangular pizza stone to keep in his propane oven to regulate the evenness of his baked goods. So far that seems to be working but he finds that the propane oven bakes slower than a gas oven. He would love to do the opposite and replace his propane with a convection microwave. I guess it depends on how much you plan on being off the grid and how much baking you do. I’ve been really pleased with the grill, convection, and microwave options with the Contoure and would happily replace it with the same if it peters out.
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Old 02-21-2024, 03:53 PM   #18
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We just bought a 2022 Flying Cloud FB with a convection oven. I talked the dealer into swapping it out for the propane oven. They did it at no extra charge. I had sent a query to another Airstream dealer earlier and they said they would do it for $2,113. The best way would be to have the dealer replace the front wood trim that the microwave is fastened to and replaced with the one that the oven fastens to. They are almost identical and our dealer just used the panel for the microwave. If you didn't know they did it, you would never notice the difference. The opening is the same, so the microwave comes out and the oven goes right into the same space. We are very happy with the results, plus we got an oven from a 2023 model out of the deal.
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Old 02-22-2024, 05:47 AM   #19
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Thanks again for the additional feedback.

I understand different use scenarios make one option or the other more or less attractive. But as mentioned earlier, we don’t expect to be connected to shore power but very rarely, and small trailers don’t have big battery banks, so a convection microwave wouldn’t be much use to us. A propane oven can be used on or off the grid, which is the solution we need.

Hopefully we’ll find a trailer that already has a propane oven. But it’s good to know that swapping one in is, if not simple, at least reasonably do-able.
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