single mom - needs advice - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-18-2009, 03:01 AM   #15
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Trailer: 1973 Compact II
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Wow, I am so overwhelmed by all the responses - THANKS so much, everybody. I appreciate all this info. I am learning a lot and am loving doing all this research.
I'm trying to save up some money and would love to buy something around Christmas. My little girl would be so excited. I work in the school system so have my summers off. We love to camp and like to go to state parks for our summer vacations. I cannot imagine how much fun we will have next summer if I am able to get something by then!
Thanks again!!!!
Joy
HI, found my trailer in the winter and picked it up in January and had time for repairs, etc. before spring. Mine has "ice box" that works well but really wish I had a true refrigerator and didn't have to worry about freezing big blocks of ice ahead of time and watching them melt. I use ice chest for Diet Cokes. At some point, would love to have refrigerator installed and do away with the ice box. Think you will like having real refrig. and not having to worry if the milk and eggs will spoil before you get more ice.

Also, check out whether cabinet doors and drawers stay closed before buying or you'll have to install latches on everything. Stopping for the night and finding everything on the floor can dampen your spirits. Pat
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Old 07-18-2009, 08:17 PM   #16
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Name: Anne
Trailer: (SOLD)1981 13 ft Burro (Sunny side UP!)
California
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I'm surprised no one has pointed this out, but your towing capacity is linked to engine size (4 cyl or 6 cyl, what horsepower/torque?), drive (front wheel drive has higher towing capacity than 4 wheel drive because of lower vehicle weight) and transmission. The Xterra is built on the same chassis and engine choices as the Frontier pick-up and has the same towing specs in the literature.
Taken from the 2002 description of the Xterra on Edmunds.com :

"The Xterra's standard motivation comes from a 2.4-liter inline four that makes 143 horsepower. XEs and SEs can be ordered with a 170-hp 3.3-liter V6 or a new supercharged version of this engine that produces 210 hp. Outdoor enthusiasts can tow up to 5,000 pounds with the V6 and an automatic transmission, and antilock brakes are standard on all models."

The specs page on Edmunds says that the 2.4L engine has max of 3500 pounds with FWD and auto. That's still capable of pulling a 13ft trailer if there are not too many weight adding mods (wood floor, racks, 3-way frig, AC, extra water/holding tanks all add weight) and you are not carrying a large payload in the vehicle.

I did not get the tow package when I bought my 2007 Frontier (V6, FWD, auto) and now regret it. The dealer says they can't add the beefed up transmission cooler after the fact and after market installation will void the warranty. Probably so will towing without the added package! I got class 3 hitch,receiver, ball mount, ball, wiring with 7 way plug and brake controller installed at U-haul for less than $300.00 (not including Tekonsha Prodigy controller that I bought for $80 on-line).

I have been thinking of trading in the Frontier on an Xterra because I can get the same size engine with option of more than two passengers (comfortably). But then I would be back to payments again. Don't want that!

Keep looking for the right egg for you. It sounds like you are prepared to be patient and willing to ask advice. The two most important elements of finding what you want! (Well...money helps too). Welcome to the club!
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Old 07-19-2009, 02:38 PM   #17
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Trailer: 13 ft Casita
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HI, found my trailer in the winter and picked it up in January and had time for repairs, etc. before spring. Mine has "ice box" that works well but really wish I had a true refrigerator and didn't have to worry about freezing big blocks of ice ahead of time and watching them melt. I use ice chest for Diet Cokes. At some point, would love to have refrigerator installed and do away with the ice box. Think you will like having real refrig. and not having to worry if the milk and eggs will spoil before you get more ice.

Also, check out whether cabinet doors and drawers stay closed before buying or you'll have to install latches on everything. Stopping for the night and finding everything on the floor can dampen your spirits. Pat

Walmart has a small 12v/120v Refrigerator the size of a ice chest we got it for $88+ tax.. it fit great where the ice box was and I just put a door over the front cabinet to cover it and if its winter we can take it out and use that area for storage ..
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Old 07-20-2009, 02:17 PM   #18
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Name: Janet - Jan - jj
Trailer: U-Haul 13 ft 1985
Ohio
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Hi Joy & Daughter of Joy, Welcome to a super site, I am a newer-bie and have found it to be so. About finding your camper; On the left side of the page, under RESOURSES, look in "Helpful-Links" for "RV Classifieds". There are many new places to look or possibly post a camper wanted ad. I got a 13', 1985 Uhaul in very nice condition thru ebay so don't count them out. If I don't miss my guess many of the folks from this site are now on the prowl for you. If anything turns up in my neck of the woods and you want me to go look at it for you just say the word, I am in the center part of Eastern Oh. I travel with 1 or several dogs and am in love with my "Little Darlin'", as a previous owner named her and had written on her side. We just made our first trip to Kellys Island in Lake Erie, WOW! what a great state park, and wonderful time. Within weeks we will be going back, dogs, Little Darlin' & me. FYI: I tow with an '08 Honda Element with a capacity oif 1500 lbs, camper is said to weigh 900, had no problems at all. I do need to get reflectors to put behind it so I have a target when backing up at night. Happy trails!! Jan & her furry girls.
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Old 07-20-2009, 02:33 PM   #19
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Name: Alan
Trailer: FORMERLY:Scamp 19 ft 5th Wheel Deluxe ('The White House')
California
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Hi Joy - in addition to CriagsList, look at Craigshelper - it does a search of ALL craigslist sites and returns the info. It is STILL a pain to sort thru, but there are TONS of rigs for sale nationwide. Craigs helper allows you do designate how many miles from your ZIP code to search.

DO watch out for scam artists, tho. There have been a number of reports about bad stuff on craigslist. You know how good of a character judge you are - if you think you need another set of eyes and ears, take a friend along.

AND most of all, consider that the buying part is ALSO part of the adventure. **somewhere** YOUR egg is just sitting paitently waiting for its new owner!
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Old 07-21-2009, 10:00 AM   #20
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Trailer: 2007 Casita Spirit Deluxe
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Hi my new friends!
Had dinner with my parents last night and my stepdad offered to help me get a trailer hitch installed. He pulls a horse trailer that has a bed and kitchen and all that stuff up front. They camp with their horses a lot. So my next move is to get the trailer hitch. Meanwhile I'll keep looking and learning and saving money.
I can store the camper in my grandmother's equipment shed.
Again, I so appreciate all the help.
Thanks!
Joy and Lily
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Old 07-21-2009, 12:31 PM   #21
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Name: Donna D
Trailer: Escape 5.0 TA, 2014
Oregon
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Joy and Lily
Hey, another Joy and Lily! The other though is Joy A (Avila) and Lily is a dog.... but same, same... she travels alone too and is the MOD QUEEN.

At anyrate, here's a topic you should read. Lots of helpful info when looking to purchase an egg.

Just click here: The Official "Search Tips" Thread!, Posted by request

But as has been mentioned... please be very, very careful of scams. There are lots of helpful people here and some are willing to go look at a trailer in their general vicinity if you should find one for sale.

Oh and don't forget to print out the Buyers Check List

Good luck!
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Old 07-21-2009, 01:28 PM   #22
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Name: Rachel
Trailer: 1974 Boler 13 ft (Neonex/Winnipeg)
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FYI: I tow with an '08 Honda Element with a capacity oif 1500 lbs, camper is said to weigh 900, had no problems at all.
Jan, just an FYI: The U-haul 13 weighs a bit more empty than the typical 13-footer. I think because the frame and axle are a bit beefier (they were made for the rental trade). The published empty weight for a U-haul 13 is 1250#

With a tow capacity of 1500# (including gear and fluids in the trailer), I would take the rig to a public scale and see what you are really pulling. Then you'll know and can pack (or unpack) accordingly.

Raya
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Old 07-21-2009, 05:21 PM   #23
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Name: Anne
Trailer: (SOLD)1981 13 ft Burro (Sunny side UP!)
California
Posts: 74
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Quote:
I'm surprised no one has pointed this out, but your towing capacity is linked to engine size (4 cyl or 6 cyl, what horsepower/torque?), drive (front wheel drive has higher towing capacity than 4 wheel drive because of lower vehicle weight) and transmission. The Xterra is built on the same chassis and engine choices as the Frontier pick-up and has the same towing specs in the literature.
Brian corrected me on this glaring error. I meant to say two wheel drive (not front wheel drive). He also said that the 2002 Xterra was not available as a 4 cylinder in spite of what Edmunds says. Thanks for setting the record straight Brian!
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Old 07-21-2009, 06:42 PM   #24
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Trailer: 2007 Casita Spirit Deluxe
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Hey everybody,
My stepdad says I need to check on brake issues related to the camper to know if I need to get a brake box installed on my Xterra. Can somebody explain to me about brakes?

I called a local place about getting a trailer hitch installed and it was around $200 and the wiring package was about $50. Sound reasonable?

THANKS!
Joy
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Old 07-21-2009, 07:04 PM   #25
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Your future trailer may or may not come with brakes, one reason to wait until you have found what you want before getting the hitch set up (in my opinion). The brake hook-up would be part of the electrical package that would be installed. Many of the older, smaller trailers do not have brakes and there are many discussions here on the forum about brakes or no brakes. You can have them added, for safety if it is a concern. Our first trailer was a '87 13' Burro without brakes, we never even thought about them as we did not have a problem in 12 years of ownership. It stopped when needed, if we stopped quickly we did not have any fishtailing, etc. But a 13' Burro is light, our tow vehicle, a Previa, heavy and we did fine. Our newer and larger Escape has them, as all newer trailers do. Some states may require them. There are many folks with more brake knowledge than I have who can address this, but I've given you some food for thought.

Good luck on your search, take your time, as others have said, take the check list and someone else along to look at anything or if it is a ways from you see if someone on the forum might be able to go look and let you know if an available trailer is worth pursuing. Patience and education will bring you something you will enjoy and have adventures in for years to come!

Penney
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Old 07-21-2009, 08:07 PM   #26
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Trailer: 1983 13 ft Scamp
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Hey everybody,
My stepdad says I need to check on brake issues related to the camper to know if I need to get a brake box installed on my Xterra. Can somebody explain to me about brakes?

I called a local place about getting a trailer hitch installed and it was around $200 and the wiring package was about $50. Sound reasonable?

THANKS!
Joy
Joy, I just had a hitch installed for about $175.00 (93 for the hitch, the rest labor). HOWEVER, it turned out to be a hitch that connected to the wheelwells instead of the bumper (better). So for the second time around, we bought the hitch from etrailer and my husband installed it without any trouble. In other words, be sure that the hitch is right for your vehicle and what you are towing (probably a 13'?). And, you can save $ if you buy the hitch and your stepdad installs!

I agree with other folks about waiting til you get your trailer to do the wiring. I had a brake controller installed, certain I had brakes, which I didn't (older Scamp). I don't imagine you save a lot by doing both at the same time.

Good luck to you - you have lots of fun ahead!
Karin
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Old 07-21-2009, 09:17 PM   #27
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Name: Rachel
Trailer: 1974 Boler 13 ft (Neonex/Winnipeg)
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I've found www.hitch-web.com to be a good resource for hitch shopping. I actually used it to help me when I was vehicle shopping too; it was a good way to (loosely) determine the tow rating for various vehicles.

Raya
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Old 07-21-2009, 09:54 PM   #28
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Name: Karalyn
Trailer: Eggless for now but looking. currently own Amerilite 21 ft
Minnesota
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my advice is to buy the camper first and then see what you need. Maybe someone can haul it home for you if needed until you get the proper equipment on your car.
just my opinion
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