Looking at getting our first RV - Fiberglass RV

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Old 11-10-2008, 10:25 PM   #1
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Having just retired this summer, my wife and I are starting to look at Travel trailers. We've already eliminated moter homes and gigantic fifth wheels from our list. Couldn't justify purchasing a special tow vehicle or a moterhome that isn't used at least 26 weeks a year. My current vehicle is an 07 4x4 ranger with 4.0 v6 and auto trans. Ford rates the towing at 5820, but I don't believe in living on the edge so I'm limiting the RV to 4700 loaded, or 3700 dry.
Their are a few of what are called micro-lite TT's on the market and they seem very close to what I'm looking for , but I've seen a few casitas and scamps go by on the highway and would like to know the pros and cons. I'm especially interested in how they hold up, Quality of construction, what amenities are offered, and of course , the cost.

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Old 11-10-2008, 11:04 PM   #2
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Trailer: 2002 17 ft Casita Liberty Deluxe
Posts: 901
Hello David

We have a 2002 17' Casita Liberty .. we are also retired and we live in California and have taken many trips with our trailer. It's been to Oregon,, Washington, and BC on a ferry... to Texas, Colorado, Utah etc.. many times across the desert... we love our trailer. Ours weighs about 3400 fully loaded for camping... We tow with a 2004 Honda Odyssey van and it tows great.

Can't tell you the cost as ours is now 7 years old and prices have gone up.. as everything has. Quality is great... We have had two cabinet knobs break, hit a tire on the road and knocked off the J-trap, and other than that, we have made many mods to our trailer to make it ours...

We were going to sell our trailer a couple of years ago and upgrade to a newer Liberty. Then began thinking about all the things we have done to our trailer to make it exactly for us .. there wasn't anything wrong with our trailer,and the Casita Company actually hasn't made enough changes to make it worthwhile.. So we kept our 2002 trailer. No regrets ...

For us there aren't any cons.. we love it like just as it is. Jim is 6'1" so we purchased the Liberty model for the king bed. Used that for awhile and changed to twin beds. Now we have more room, one can get up in the morning and the other can still in bed... The trailer is small, but using the twin mod, we can walk to the rear of the trailer and reach all the cabinets. We can seat 6 people for dinner or to play a game. We have all the fun items in our trailer - TV, XM radio, DVD player, and decorated the way we like it. We have a refrigerator with a good size freezer, microwave, 2 burner stove, single sink, and a closet and cupboards. Outside we have an awning which we love.

Our trailer is easy to tow, no work to clean, fast to setup, can eat, sleep and use our full bathroom, instead of the campground restrooms. What more is there to say? For us the Casita Liberty is a winner. We can tell you all about the Casita, but the best thing for you to do is to contact Casita, ask for a referral and go see one up close.

I hope this has helped you .. I''m sure others will continue where I left off. There's lots to say about our Casitas, and other great fiberglass trailers..

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Old 11-10-2008, 11:25 PM   #3
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Thanks for background info. Sounds pretty durable to me , 7 years is truly an acid test. Basically what we're looking for is a portable motel that we own, and always has a vacancy and a view.
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Old 11-10-2008, 11:33 PM   #4
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Trailer: 16 ft U-Haul VT / 2004 GMC Safari
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I too was torn between buying a 'stickie' and a fiberglass RV. My husband would have done which ever I wanted, but since I knew if there was a problem with the unit, I'd be the one towing it somewhere to get repaired or figuring out how to do it myself.

What it boiled down to was this for me. I knew if I had a 'stick built' trailer, at some time during the ownership the roof would have to be recoated. ( I didn't want to have to bother doing that) If I bought a used one, worrying about an unknown leak somewhere in the roof would have me going bonkers. (We looked at several that had been repaired or needed repair) We too have a 6cyl vehicle, so towing was going to be an issue. I went with fiberglass as there is much, much less maintaince, it's easier to tow, and besides rainy camping days and sleeping, we spend most of our time outside. We've had our 24 year old trailer a little over a year now and I wouldn't trade it for the world!! (Ok, maybe a 17ft Big Foot - but that's all!) Our U-haul was in the rental program for 10 years before being sold off to private individuals. It's built like a tank - it had to be to be able to take all the rental abuse!

We went with a used unit only for the reason it was 1) 1/4 of the price of a new Casita, and 2) ours was 10 miles from our home and we didn't have to drive across the U.S. to get it!

It's all original, down to the doors, the cushions, the front and back dining tables. Besides needing a good Poli-glow or Vert glass treatment to make it shiny, people are surprised at how old it really is. (Just ask the Casita people that attended the Fall Gathering in Ohio this past year!). a 24 year old stick trailer looks 24 years old - with mods and good exterior care, should you choose to buy new or old, your trailer can look as good as new!

Just sharing my perspective on buying and what I considered just last year when I was looking for ours.

Good luck in your search. I bet you won't find a better group of people than those here on FiberglassRV to help you with your questions, problems, cheer for you when (and if) you do find a 'glass' unit.
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Old 11-11-2008, 12:02 AM   #5
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David, We've had our 24 year old trailer a little over a year now and I wouldn't trade it for the world!!
24 years is quite impressive. I have noticed that the folks on this web site are very friendly and helpful. There seems to be a lot of DIY activity. I've been to the Casita site, but I'll need something a little more up close and personal to answer my questions. But a used one I hadn't thought of, and you're right, the used conventional trailers I've seen didn't impress me very much.
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Old 11-11-2008, 12:20 AM   #6
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Name: Alfred
Trailer: 2014 Escape 5.0TA / 2010 Nissan Frontier
Posts: 3,652
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Hi: David and Check out Escape Trailers. Made in B.C. Canada. You already have the Pickup truck the 5.0 is designed for!!! We love ours and tow with a V6 GMC and get up to 20 MPG to boot. It doesn't get any better than that!!! IMHO.
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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Old 11-11-2008, 04:17 AM   #7
Trailer: 2008 Scamp 16 ft
Posts: 45
Hi David,
We went from a small motor home to a 2008 Scamp 16', and are loving it! Our motor home was old, leaky and cumbersome (not to mention a true gas-hog). We looked at new & used stick built trailers, but a lot of them that were considered lightweight seemed pretty flimsy and cheaply made. Then we discovered the eggs, and it was love at first sight! These campers are easy to tow, easy to clean, and very easy to love.
The Scamp people were great to work with, patiently answering my many questions when I would call before, during and after our purchase. Check out their website. I am pretty sure that if you buy any of the brands of fiberglass trailers new, you can get just about any amenities you want...we have a bathroom w/shower, stove, fridge, heater, air conditioner, awning and plenty of room to take our grandson camping with us!
Anyway, it seems that everyone loves their eggs, and I think that if you decide to go that route you won't be sorry! The added plus is this forum of helpful folks that are so willing to share their opinions,experiences & know-how...I have learned so much here!
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Old 11-11-2008, 04:42 AM   #8
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Name: Donna D
Trailer: Escape 5.0 TA, 2014
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If you're looking to purchase new, be sure to check out all the current manufacturers of molded lightweight fiberglass trailers. Click on this link, from our Helpful-Links page: All Current Trailer Brands

Best of luck in your search, there's the perfect trailer out there for you!
Donna D.
Ten Forward - 2014 Escape 5.0 TA
Double Yolk - 1988 16' Scamp Deluxe
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Old 11-11-2008, 07:54 AM   #9
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Name: Bobbie
Trailer: Trails West Campster 1970/Escape 15A
Posts: 2,992
After owning my 38 year old trailer for 18 months I wouldn't ever consider a stickie... I spent a night in a rain/windstorm last year, winds up to 35 mph, driving rain, and we were cozy and dry while a friend in a new-from-the-dealer 4 year old stickie sprung a leak. If I buy another trailer it will be another fiberglass trailer.

I think you do trade something in terms of storage space (rounded corners don't lend themselves to storage quite as well) and lack of slide-outs but you also get a lighter trailer (better gas mileage) and one that will hold its value much better.

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Old 11-11-2008, 10:10 AM   #10
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Trailer: 1983 Scamp 13 ft Standard
Posts: 359
I have a '83 Scamp 13' that had traded hands at least two times before I rescued it from a existance as a storage shed. I've restored it, & while it's far from new, it provides me wonderful service with no end in sight. In no way could any stick built trailer ever withstand the years of use and neglect that my trailer was subjected to without the body rotting away long ago.

When I was shopping around I came to the conclusion that at the price range I was shopping for, I could only get a older stick-built trailer that would need much repair...and still would only be a old stick-built trailer... OR find a fiberglass TT that, with a little work, be almost as good as new.

The reason being that all fiberglass models has had very few design changes over the years...the basic design of early models are virtually identical to the newest showroom models. Appliances and fixtures are the only differences, with replacements easily available.

From a financial standpoint, you cannot find any affordable Travel Trailer with a better resale value than a fiberglass model...I do not include Airstream for I feel they can never be considered an "affordable" Travel Trailer. All RV's depreciate like automobiles as soon as they leave the dealers lot, and a used stick-built trailer is simply that... just another used stick-built travel trailer. Check the want ads, always full of stickies'...but put a FOR SALE sign on a fiberglass trailer parked in the front yard, & it'll sell in a afternoon.

Fiberglass Trailers have a uniqueness, a cachet. Seldom do stick-built trailer owners get comments on their "cute" trailer, requests for a "look inside", or serious offers to buy the trailer while you've stopped to buy gas or while you're camping. You get used to hearing how your trailer "is much bigger inside than out".

I recommend any Fiberglass TT due to longevity, low maintenance, extreme return on investment, and functionality.

...besides, as it has been shown here on this forum time & time again..."Glass IS class!"

Good Luck on your shopping and "Happy Campin' "
Check out my Scamp restoration video on Youtube, & my Ham Radio Blog. Or take the 50 cent tour...
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Old 11-11-2008, 12:14 PM   #11
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Trailer: Casita
New River AZ
Posts: 1,043
I had a few stick trailers and when i seen one of these molded fiberglass trailers in person i knew i had to have one..... mine is a 94' Casita 16' and it looks new..... I wouldn't give it up for all the tea in china. Well..... Maybe a new one i would but this 94' could stay with me for the next 30 years and I would still be "Happy"
"Glass Is Class"
Joe and Linda
2013 Casita SD
Dodge Ram 4x4
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Old 11-11-2008, 07:46 PM   #12
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Trailer: 2008 Oliver Legacy Elite
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We have an Oliver, best friend has a Casita, and my aunt and uncle enjoyed their little Scamp for over 15 years... One of the big benefits for us is that our little trailer, at six foot six width, tracks right along with the truck when we're towing, especially on skinny roads with narrow shoulders and steep ditches or dropoffs. Great feeling to know where the trailer is... right along the same track. Makes the interior a little smaller, yes, but who leaves home to spend their time inside? We have all we want, and more... snug and cozy in the cold and snow with the furnace, a tiny but functional kitchen, our own bathroom, and a comfortable bed.... and great views wherever we choose to stop. And a tough, fun little trailer, too! Hope you find one that makes you just as happy as we are!
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Old 11-23-2008, 02:04 PM   #13
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This topic might be done, but I thought I'd add my two cents worth. I bought a 16' Scamp and am very happy with it. I believe you said you had a Ford Ranger pickup truck, so you should take a look at the Scamp 19' 5th wheel trailer so you can have that nice big bed.

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Old 11-23-2008, 10:33 PM   #14
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Name: Roy
Trailer: 1972 boler American and 1979 Trillium 4500
Posts: 4,850

Your post got reminded me there was an Escape 5.0 posted for sale here a couple of days ago that was in Oregon.

I PM'd David with the link.

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