A couple of Casita questions - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-21-2007, 06:44 PM   #1
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Trailer: 1991 16 ft Casita Freedom Deluxe
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I found a 1991 16' Casita fairly close to me for sale. It needs a little work, but overall seems to be in pretty good shape. It has the front bath and captain's chairs for the side dinette - same floorplan as the current Freedom model on their website. I noticed a few things, though...

Where is the coach battery in a Casita? There was a small box directly behind the coupler, but it seemed to be too small for a coach battery, I'm thinking it might have been for a small one to operate an electric tongue jack or maybe for a breakaway switch to activate the trailer brakes. There is a pair of 20# tanks on the tongue but the space between the tanks and the front of the trailer is taken up by the sewer hose storage. I think I saw a converter on the street side cubby under the rear dinette bench - did they stuff the battery back there, too?

This one has A/C but no furnace. I need a furnace. Where did Casita put them - under the sink? I wouldn't have a problem installing one, it looks like there would be room for one there. You'd lose one cabinet door, though.

The frame shows signs of being repaired at the bend right under the street side front. it looks like an old repair. Is this a common trouble spot? The rest of the frame looks pretty good, with just some surface rust. There is a small patch where the body settled down onto the frame at that spot.

The axle seems to have a decent amount of bounce. It's set up with the arms maybe at a 20° up angle. The axle is bolted on, and seems to have a small spacer like a thick washer under the bolt on the front edge on each side. Why? I was thinking it might have been for alignment purposes, but both sides look to be about the same.

The sink leaked at some point in the past and the drain is now disconnected. There is a soft spot in the floor - I bet the water that leaked rotted the plywood. Casitas have an encapsulated floor which would hold the water in in a case like that. Is the plywood relatively easy to replace if you pull the carpet up? It's not all too bad as-is, but I'm trying to think ahead.

Definitely needs a set of tires. The spare is a bare rim, one tire is a bias-ply in relatively decent shape, and the other is a radial with an obviously bad case of broken belts; the tread is all rounded out and you can see cords through the rips in the tread. Yikes.

It's a fixer-upper, but I think the price is right.
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Old 06-22-2007, 05:24 AM   #2
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Trailer: Former Casita 17 ft owner
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Lee,

Administrator Suz will no doubt chime in here, she has an '89 SD 16'.

I'll try to answer some of your concerns.

On hers, the battery was under the street side bench along with the converter.

She also had an electrical box on the tongue. Once we figured out that it was a primitive electric brake controller, she disconnected it. She had a brake controller in her tow and the two were fighting each other.

Casita puts the furnace under the cooktop, not under the sink.

Suz has had some welding done on her frame and also lifted the axle, but she'll have to give you details.

Sounds to me like you'd better grab that trailer while you can.
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Old 06-22-2007, 12:10 PM   #3
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Well, the bank approved my loan today, I withdrew a down payment from my account, and I was ready to go put it down on the Casita this afternoon, but... he sold it this morning.

ARRGGHHH!

Thanks, anyway... maybe the new owners will have the same questions.
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Old 06-23-2007, 09:05 AM   #4
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Trailer: 2007 Casita Liberty (Sold 2011)/ Honda Odyssey
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Casita puts the furnace under the cooktop, not under the sink.
The furnace on my future Liberty is under the sink, as it was on my Scamp.
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Old 06-23-2007, 09:08 AM   #5
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but... he sold it this morning.

ARRGGHHH!
Well blast it all. Been there, done that. Since you're now preapproved for a loan, the next one you find will go much better for you.

Hang in there Lee, when it's meant to be...one will pop up for sale just for you.
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Old 06-23-2007, 09:10 AM   #6
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The furnace on my future Liberty is under the sink, as it was on my Scamp.
And the one in my Scamp is under the closet next to the refrigerator Is there ANYTHING standard on these trailers....at least year-to-year.
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Old 06-23-2007, 04:55 PM   #7
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The furnace on my future Liberty is under the sink, as it was on my Scamp.
I should remember "all generalizations are wrong." Mea culpa.
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Old 06-23-2007, 07:28 PM   #8
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I should remember "all generalizations are wrong." Mea culpa.
And that's what makes these trailers so cool (to me), they're as individualized as the owners.
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Old 06-25-2007, 09:13 AM   #9
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Update:

The owner of the Casita called me this morning - apparently the person he sold it to seems to have disappeared on him. It's mine now!

I'm leaving work a little early to go give him a down payment.



I don't want to count my eggs before they're hatched (so to speak), but I may finally become one of the gang!
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Old 06-25-2007, 10:41 AM   #10
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Well, I was going to post that I was sorry I was so late, but looks like I'm just in time!

Holler at me if I can be of any help after you get it. I was out camping, then had guest this last week so I haven't been around much. I'll be checking.

The original axle did have a 20% angle, however it was welded on. If yours is bolted on, someone did a very good thing for you. !
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Old 06-25-2007, 12:29 PM   #11
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Hey, hey, hey - Congratulations, Lee ... a "meant to be" thing, as Donna D. stated! 'Twas a bit of a 'cliff-hanger' tho'. We look forward reading about your mods and upgrades.

Wishing you safe journeys and happy memories for many years. Perhaps our travel paths will cross one day. L 'n D
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Old 06-25-2007, 06:00 PM   #12
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Congratulations Lee! Nice to see another New Englander fixing up an egg! Keep us posted on your adventure! Alec
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Old 06-25-2007, 09:20 PM   #13
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Trailer: 1991 16 ft Casita Freedom Deluxe
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I put a deposit on it tonight, and brought back the spare wheel with me. I feel comfortable with one of the tires to bring it home and I'll swap the bad one out before leaving his place. As luck would have it, this Casita has 13" tires - the decent one is a bias-ply B78-13 ST, which crosses over to a 175/80D-13ST; same size as those which I have on my Scotty. I also happen to have a brand-new, unmounted Towmax tire that I was going to use as a spare for the Scotty but which I'll now mount up on the Casita rim. Serendipity at work?

I read a lot about tire failures on newer Casitas on the Casita Club forum. It appears that there is plenty of room in the wheel well and I think it would be a good idea to upgrade to 14" wheels at some point in the near future. Might as well do that soon after getting it home and get a set of 3. These should be 5 on 4-1/2" with zero offset, right?
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Old 06-26-2007, 08:13 AM   #14
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Just a word of caution: Some older Casitas had room for the 14" tires but my '89 did not. There was plenty of top clearance, but not on the back side. It was the way that the unit was sitting on the frame. The '91 might be different, so it is worth a check. Before I had my trailer raised and a new 3500# axle welded on, I did go to a beefier 13 (285?) and they did fine.
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