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Old 10-14-2021, 02:04 PM   #1
2021 23' Flying Cloud
oakville , Ontario
Join Date: Oct 2020
Posts: 50
The first 7000 miles, 70 nights - reflections of a newbie: A). Towing Experience

We took delivery in late May of our Flying Cloud 23FB. A few shake down trips locally, then a 50 day, 6,000 mile trip from Toronto to Newfoundland and back. This is what I have learned (so far!) and some reflections that may encourage / inform others contemplating an Airstream and specifically a Flying Cloud 23.

1. The Airstream is a thing of beauty. Iconic, retro to modern eyes, the trailer looks good, and attracts the same kind of attention as I would pay to a gorgeous classic car. Extra cost but it is worth it for that pleasure of contemplating a lovely piece of machinery.
2. It tows really well (behind Expedition Max as TV): once Wd is properly sorted and sway bars creakily engaged this is finger-tip driving.
3. Driving is surprisingly more relaxed than when not towing. In good conditions I keep to 100km/hr (60 mph) even when limits are higher. Not so slow as to cause a nuisance but not so fast I feel concerned about my ability to respond to a sudden incident. I go up to 70mph + if overtaking. On the highway I let stuff pass by, I am not concerned about going faster than speed limits nor am I ducking in and out of lanes to overtake as I would be when not towing. In bad / windy conditions I go slower, about 50-55 mph to the point where things feel stable and predictable even in gusts. Bad road surface is the worst (thinking of Quebec!) and then I may slow down a lot.
4. Let trucks pass efficiently. If I am set on cruise at 100 kmíhr and a truck passes at 101 then that makes for a long time alongside. I learned to back speed off 5 km/hr to let it pass quickly and quite often get a flash of lights as a thank you.
5. Hitching up is a matter of practice in getting tow ball under the hitch. I found that if on a level surface I can leave truck in Park and just give it a good shove with my hip if hitch is just a bit off engaging. On a slope it is just more difficult and will take time.
6. Raise the jack more than seems necessary when connecting torsion bars. Once I did not, tried to muscle it and suffered back pain for the next three days. Now if it seems too hard, I hold the lifting bar in place and raise the jack with my other hand till I know from the barís angle that it will be easy.
7. Nice feelings of satisfaction:
a) When hearing the torsion wrench click on all the lug nuts of the trailer wheels;
b) When TPMS checks tire pressures are correct while driving.
c) Standing back to admire the waxed finish
d) Seeing clear water when flushing the black tank
8. Non-serviced sites work for us: I booked too many serviced sites, which tend to be busier and more noisy. Non-serviced sites were often quieter, in beautiful locations. We only needed serviced sites maybe every 5th or 6th night. Balancing grey and black tank levels became an art form.
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Old 10-15-2021, 03:08 PM   #2
Rivet Master
DewTheDew's Avatar
2017 27' Flying Cloud
Frederick , Maryland
Join Date: Aug 2017
Posts: 521
I tend to be a somewhat aggressive driver without the trailer (that's what my wife tells me!) but, like you, I notice I am much calmer when pulling the trailer and hanging out in the slow lane. I still see people doing stupid things but they rarely impact me! :-)

And yes, I will speed up or slow down to "break the bond" with people who seem to not notice that they are driving side-by-side.
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