Oliver Handling - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-09-2012, 06:47 PM   #1
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Oliver Handling

All,

We're seriously considering investing in a small fiberglass travel trailer. We have our eye on an Oliver and are wondering about the sway, wind effect, and passing truck influences on small fiberglass trailers. Do You owners of small, Calista-like trailers have problems with trailer sway in crosswinds, when trucks pass, and in uneven pavement.

The Oliver's tongue configuration doesn't seem like it would lend itself to installation of a sway control and he light tongue weights wouldn't seem to warrant an equalizing hitch.

Any input is very appreciated. My former trailers were a 19' 1976 Terry Taurus and a 24' 1990 Prowler. Both were 8' wide and both could be a bit of a handful when towing with our full sized Blazer.

We're considering downsizing from our current 2007.5 GMC 2500HD Crew Cab Short Bed 4x4 with the Duramax/Allison combination. That's just way too much truck for an Oliver 17'.

Thanks in Advance,

Bill
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:06 PM   #2
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I'd say put the cart before the horse. Since you already own a tug, try the trailer behind it! Don't automatically think it's too much truck for the trailer. You may find it's a perfect match and the fuel mileage is really good, rather than trading down and getting an under powered vehicle YMMV.

Hi Bill! My opinion only.....
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:16 PM   #3
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If you desire a smaller tow vehicle, that's fine. But don't sell the truck just because you think it dwarfs a smaller trailer! There's a certain economy in keeping a truck that's already paid for (or even nearly so).

The egg trailers tend to be very good around wind gusts and passing trucks. They're much better behaved than their boxy counterparts. I had a 17' Burro and now tow a 16' box; neither one have any hint of sway and both have manageable tongue weights, so I don't use any special hitch (even though I own an Equal-i-zer) with my Highlander tug. You should be fine.

Where did you find a used Oliver? Those are as rare as hen's teeth.
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:30 PM   #4
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Where did you find an Oliver?

We've towed our Oliver with a 2004 xc90 Volvo, a 2005 shortbed Silverado, and our current tow, a 2008 Ram 1500 4 by 4. All work well. The Silverado shortbed is still in the family, and our favorite tow vehicle.
The 4x4 was a decision based upon our personal preferences (four doors) and camping property. Steep hills (very), loose gravel, and so on...
If the current tv is paid off, and mileage isn't terrible, there are trade-offs to buying down. I'm sure you've already considered that.
Sherry
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:27 PM   #5
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All,

I'm hesitant to reveal my sources but a Google search turned up one on RVTrader.com. Now don't steal it. :W

There are multiple reasons for us to downsize our truck including providing easier access for my wife, who's recovering after an autologous stem cell transplant for a lymphoma relapse. She's recovering well but the climb into our current truck is a bit of a hassle for her. Also, current diesel prices are a bit of a pain. I'm sure the Oliver wouldn't effect our mileage more than a couple of miles per gallon but using gasoline vs. diesel would help with daily travel budgets. The maintenance on the Duramax is pricy and, if I by from my local Toyota dealer, oil changes and washes are free as long as I own the Taco.

Thanks to all,

Bill
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:42 PM   #6
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Just be sure that the Taco actually gets decent economy. Now that I just bought (today) a Duramax, I'll be selling my 4Runner. ANYTHING gets better mileage than a 4Runner - which is (mostly) based on a Taco

Even though "diseasel" fuel costs a bunch more than the reg-grade gas the 4Runner ran on, I still think it will be cheaper to drive the humongous one-ton, 4X4, long box, ext cab 2006 Duramax

Before I got the 4runner, I checked into what kind of fuel consumption I should expect. When I got about HALF that, I then found a whole bunch of sites that all said "yeah, that's about right - they never did get anywhere near what they were rated to get!"
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:48 PM   #7
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I pull our Casita 17SD with a Silverado 1500 crewcab. I've pulled the trailer all over the Country, with a swaybar attached. Our daughter and son-in-law also have a 17SD which they pull with a Dodge 1500 crewcab without a swaybar. We have followed them many miles on the interstates and never noticed any signs of handling problems on their part. The aerodynamics of the Casita/Oliver type trailers work really well. Though the Oliver is a little heavier than a Casita, you definitely shouldn't need an equilizer hitch unless you really downsize on the TV.
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:49 PM   #8
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BCDave,

I have a fall back position to buy an Open Range Light with the factory installed gooseneck adapter hitch. I get to use my truck's bed and my wife gets her dry bath. All I'd have to do is get her electric steps for the truck. Overall the money would be very close to the same.

Bill
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Old 03-09-2012, 10:02 PM   #9
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The electric steps would be an idea - my "5 feet nothing" wife is already lobbying for something similar on my new D-max. (I'm looking at running boards and a grab handle as "fallback")

And you can tow "whatever you want" with your bigger truck.

The Oliver is a fantastic trailer, and your D-max may not even notice it being there - so it may not impact your fuel consumption very much, if at all!

There are also many kinds of 5th wheel 'glass trailers, some at VERY nice prices, and many with a dry bath as well, so you could have the advantages of a 5er without giving up the advantages of glass! What size Open Range are you considering?

In my case the D-max allows me to "rationalize" my driveway - which currently has her car, my '92 GMC one-ton, my 4Runner and my son's car. I can now sell the '92 and the 4Runner and thus reduce the number of vehicles present. (of course, as I write this, - before selling anything - it means that there is actually one MORE.......)
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Old 03-09-2012, 10:26 PM   #10
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BCDave,

You're going to love the D'max. Mine, though it doesn't have the new urea injection does have a DPF. Even with that, we get between 19.5 and 22.0 mpg running at 60 mph on the highway. 65 mph gets us about 19.2 mpg. 58 mph seems to be the optimum velocity for fuel mileage. Certainly your mileage will vary.

I'm electric step shopping. :W

Bill
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Old 03-10-2012, 12:54 AM   #11
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Your gonna Love the Oliver (if your lucky enough to get it) they are beautiful trailers! Enjoy!
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Old 03-10-2012, 02:43 AM   #12
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Cool Your trailer

I see your source also has a Scamp 13' near you in SC.

Only see one Casita posted, in Punta Gorda, FL.

Stickies are sure going for a song!

Looking at the Oliver website, The only concern I would have would be the dissimilar metals where the steel hitch meets the aluminum frame. This looks like a real opportunity for electrolysis!

I would not worry about wind, trucks etc. The only thing we have happen is when a semi overtakes us it feels for a short time like a strong headwind. Otherwise our trailer follows like it is part of our Subaru.
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Old 03-10-2012, 12:26 PM   #13
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Eugarps,
I bought an F150 supercrew 4 x 2 5.4L with tow package to occasionally pull a loaded cattle trailer (on the few occasions when my husband doesn't pull it with his truck) and with the intentions of eventually pullin' a travel trailer that I hadn't bought yet. When I saw an ad for a Casita, I decided to go to the factory since it is about 2 1/2 hours from me. The first time I visited was to see if I really liked the Casita (which I absolutely loved). I went again the next year to make a final decision about buying. On my way home the second time, I was arguing with myself about why shouldn't I buy this wonderful trailer (carpet on the wall was the only drawback to me because my grandson has asthma and I was worried about him). When I got home that Saturday afternoon, I opened up a travel trailer magazaine and saw a picture of an Oliver. The rest is history as I picked up the phone and ordered an Oliver sight unseen. I knew I loved the Casitas and the Oliver is like a Casita without carpet on the wall. I have NO trouble hooking it up, pulling it, setting it up,etc. If the Oliver is still for sale and you would like to talk about it you are more than welcome to PM and I will be glad to talk to you about the Oliver.
(I did not get a sway bar or equalizer hitch since I was assured that the tow package would be totally sufficient. I hardly know that I am pulling a trailer.)
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Old 03-10-2012, 12:56 PM   #14
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When it comes to fiberglass campers, they sell quick. Make up your mind quickly or it will be gone. Raz
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