length and measuring question - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-07-2013, 10:46 PM   #1
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length and measuring question

Ok I have ran into some confusion and I need some clarification. I have been researching as I save for a camper. and I am running onto what seems a lot of conflicting info about the actual length of trailers.

Does the stated length of a camper trailer include the tongue and hitch or is that the body length. For example, is a Scamp or Casita 16 foot trailer, 16 ft body length or is that overall length including the tongue and hitch?

I have been running into ads here and there where a trailer is listed as being a 16 ft or 17 ft trailer. However, when you start reading the details they are including the hitch in that length. My understanding has always been that the stated "licensed" length of a trailer only includes the cargo length and not the tongue and hitch. Are campers measured differently than other trailers or are these folks just mistaken in their listings?
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Old 07-07-2013, 10:53 PM   #2
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Most travel trailers listed under 25 feet include hitch length, so it's hitch to rear bumper. Most listed over 25 feet are referring to body length. Don't know the origin of this weird convention.
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Old 07-07-2013, 10:54 PM   #3
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On the paper work I just got from scamp on the 16'. This is on the new Scamps
Specs are: Overall length 16'
Overall Height 7'10"
Overall Width 6'8"
Interior length 13'
Interior height 6'3"
Interior width 6'6"

Scamp 13' Specs are:
Specs are: Overall length 13'
Overall Height 7'6""
Overall Width 6'8"
Interior length 10'
Interior height 6'3"
Interior width 6'6"
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Old 07-07-2013, 11:10 PM   #4
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Licensing purposes, at least in Oregon, the length is measured from the hitch to bumper,
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Old 07-07-2013, 11:16 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mary Ann in MN View Post
On the paper work I just got from scamp on the 16'. This is on the new Scamps
Specs are: Overall length 16'
Overall Height 7'10"
Overall Width 6'8"
Interior length 13'
Interior height 6'3"
Interior width 6'6"

Scamp 13' Specs are:
Specs are: Overall length 13'
Overall Height 7'6""
Overall Width 6'8"
Interior length 10'
Interior height 6'3"
Interior width 6'6"
Yep that's right. All Travel trailers are measured from hitch to rear bumper. In most cases you can subtract 3 feet from the total length and come up with the 'box size. Whereas in the case of teardrop trailers, the size callout will be the box size.
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Old 07-07-2013, 11:25 PM   #6
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All that said, if a trailer sounds a bit short, it's usually because the seller wasn't in the know.... Wanna look at my 9' Hunter?

BTW: Guys usually exaggerate the size of their trailer, the ladies say it doesn't matter, as long as it's isn't parked in the wrong camp ground !!
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Old 07-08-2013, 12:04 AM   #7
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Although coupler-to-bumper is the common practice for our trailers, cargo trailers, tent trailers (pop-ups), and - as Gage mentioned - teardrop trailers are usually identified by the box/deck/body length, so the overall coupler-to-bumper length is up to about three feet longer. Many travel trailers nominal length - sometimes indicated only by the first couple of digits of the model name - also refers to the length of the body only, so again the coupler-to-bumper length would be longer.

Length for regulatory purposes is not necessarily the same as for marketing purposes. I checked three Alberta regulations and didn't find any reference to trailer length, so I can't give a local practice example.

The extension of the frame forward of the trailer's body is the tongue, not the "hitch". The coupler could be considered part of the hitch, but the coupler is just the mechanism on the end that grabs the ball.
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Old 07-08-2013, 12:46 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
Although coupler-to-bumper is the common practice for our trailers, cargo trailers, tent trailers (pop-ups), and - as Gage mentioned - teardrop trailers are usually identified by the box/deck/body length, so the overall coupler-to-bumper length is up to about three feet longer. Many travel trailers nominal length - sometimes indicated only by the first couple of digits of the model name - also refers to the length of the body only, so again the coupler-to-bumper length would be longer.

Length for regulatory purposes is not necessarily the same as for marketing purposes. I checked three Alberta regulations and didn't find any reference to trailer length, so I can't give a local practice example.

The extension of the frame forward of the trailer's body is the tongue, not the "hitch". The coupler could be considered part of the hitch, but the coupler is just the mechanism on the end that grabs the ball.

Brian,
Read this all the way through. I'll quote one section for you. The length is measured from the foremost point of the trailer hitch to the rear extremity of the trailer body, not including the spare tire.
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Old 07-08-2013, 07:46 AM   #9
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In my experience with a lot of trailers over the past 50+ years is that some manufacturers label by box length and some by overall length. Two examples: I have a 28 ft Kodiak for sale but it's actually 31 ft. In the past I had a 22 ft Summit and that was the overall length. It appears that manufacturers label them however they want to.
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Old 07-08-2013, 09:33 AM   #10
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Well that clears it up. Thanks folks for the input. At least now I know that when I am looking at these little FG campers like Casita and Scamps that usable space on a 16-17 ft camper is actually going to be more like 13-14 ft.
That makes them even smaller than I thought they were but now I know.

I have dealt a lot with cargo and utility trailers and they all go by the bed/cargo length and I assumed these were the same way until I started running into some of those adds I mentioned.

I need to actually see one of these. I would like to look one over to get a real world experience of the size. 13ft interior with a 6'3" ceiling height seems awful small to me. Is there anyone in the St Louis area or even on the eastern or southern half of Missouri who would be willing to let me take a peek at their 16 -17ft fg camper?
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Old 07-08-2013, 10:04 AM   #11
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Best bet, if possible, is to look at several 13'ers first then, when you see your first 16'er, it will look like a mansion for size.

BTW: Just to add to the confusion, I think that pop-up tent trailers are measured as overall length of the box plus the bed extensions. The StarCraft 12, 14, 16 & 18 are all built on the same 8' box, but have different bed configurations.
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Old 07-08-2013, 03:09 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
BTW: Just to add to the confusion, I think that pop-up tent trailers are measured as overall length of the box plus the bed extensions. The StarCraft 12, 14, 16 & 18 are all built on the same 8' box, but have different bed configurations.
Interesting... they used to be on box length; it's good to know how that naming scheme works.
It looks like Jayco is still using the basic box length, but not including the storage box (much like Escape and Bigfoot offer).

Speaking of the Bigfoot storage box... the optional box includes a tongue extension, but the model number doesn't change, so a 25B21 is 21 feet overall (perhaps 18 feet of body), and a 25B21 with the box is about 23 feet overall (with the same 18 feet of body, plus a two-foot box ahead of it).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron Kinnaman View Post
Brian,
Read this all the way through.
Byron, that's Oregon's version of what I was looking for in Alberta's regulations. I didn't read the linked Oregon material - I was happy to accept your information when you first posted it - but thanks for providing the link for anyone wanting more information... I'll bookmark it.

I would not be surprised if every province and state has a similar definition. As I said, length for regulatory purposes is not the same as length for descriptive or marketing purposes. For vehicle regulations, the overall length does seem to me to be the sensible thing to regulate.
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Old 07-08-2013, 06:26 PM   #13
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Bob, were you still talking about trailers? Hmmm
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