Hi, I'm Brennan - Fiberglass RV Noob - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-13-2015, 06:14 AM   #1
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Name: Brennan
Trailer: In the market
Texas
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Hi, I'm Brennan - Fiberglass RV Noob

Hello All!

My name is Brennan. My wife and I live in the Dallas, TX area and have a one-and-a-half year old son and a little girl who arrives in August, and two dogs. My hope is in the next few years when they are a little older and more independent we can hit the road in our own fiberglass RV for family vacations, so I'm starting the process of learning as much as I can now. I have a lot of questions about travel trailers in general and also probably need help finding the one that works best for us, though I'm convinced a small fiberglass trailer is the way to go. Thanks in advance for all your insights!

Cheers!

-Brennan
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Old 02-13-2015, 06:23 AM   #2
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Welcome. Your family sounds a lot like ours 25 years ago. Camping is so great for a family activity. Our dogs always loved camping and behaved better at the campgrounds than at home and if I remember right, so did the kids. And congratulations on the having another little one on the way. I think you'll love camping so hope it won't be too long before you are out there. We started camping when the youngest was about 1 1/2 years old. Used to tote him in one of the baby backpacks. You just have so much to be excited about.
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Old 02-13-2015, 06:52 AM   #3
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Good day Brennan

My dad started towing back in 1955 after he custom built an aluminum tent trailer. Six years later he was towing a 15' Shasta.

With a family of 4 it was tight. Can I ask what your tow vehicle is? If capable enough I would suggest getting an egg large enough to be comfortable. There are lots to choose from.
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Old 02-13-2015, 07:07 AM   #4
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We've been tent camping once with the little guy. It went well and I'm sure we'll do that a lot also. I feel like a travel trailer can really extend our reach and let us see a lot more of the country. Looking forward to learning more about these trailers and what we need.

We don't have a tow vehicle as of yet. We have a 2007 Subaru Outback, 4-cylinder, which has a towing capacity of 2700, but from what I've read that probably is not high enough for the trailer size we need. I'm looking to purchase a truck in the next few years. I am literally at the very beginning of this process, which is one reason I joined the forum.

I would like to get the new Chevy Colorado, the V6, but we need to save up a little. I believe the towing capacity is 7000lbs. That is another questions I have. Is it better to get a more powerful vehicle that will pull around 3000lbs. with ease rather than get a 4 cylinder truck that gets better mileage but has to work harder to tow? What's more important? Power or MPG?
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Old 02-13-2015, 08:04 AM   #5
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Your Subaru is an excellent tow vehicle for most of the 13' FGRV's. Whereas the towing capacity seems high enough, the hitch weigh limit of 200 lbs is the sticker. As you will see, the minimum recommended hitch weigh is 10% of the total creating a dichotomy with a 2800 trailer.


I have a Chevy V6 Blazer and it works great as a compromise on size power, economy and towing capacity (up to 5700 lbs.)


To answer your question about power vs. MPG....
"Power, IMHO, is very oversold for most users. If you use your TV 5% of the time for towing and 95% of the time for everyday use, MPG will be more important. However if you "require" a TV that will pull a 5000 lb trailer over the Rockies at 70 MPH frequently, power might be your only answer.


While very different from your venue, here in California, where we have mountains, as well as lots of flat areas, we also have a speed limit of 55MPH when towing, and I have yet to find any place where I felt underpowered while RVing, mostly with 4 cylinder rigs and now a V6. That all said, if your RV use is primarily for family vacations, opting for better MPG's when not towing would be a bigger consideration.
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Old 02-13-2015, 08:32 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bfruge2k View Post

I would like to get the new Chevy Colorado, the V6, but we need to save up a little. I believe the towing capacity is 7000lbs. That is another questions I have. Is it better to get a more powerful vehicle that will pull around 3000lbs. with ease rather than get a 4 cylinder truck that gets better mileage but has to work harder to tow? What's more important? Power or MPG?
The Colorado will work but is nothing special. Don't be misled by the high tow rating. Most modern Mini Vans will outperform the Colorado and in most ways be a better vehicle than a med sized pick up especially for a family with two dogs.

Re Power.... We towed our 23' with a 150HP Mini Van. No problem and it cruised at 100kph all day on the highway. Now our car/TV has 250HP and it is more than we need for our size of trailer but no one seems to complain about having too much power.
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Old 02-13-2015, 09:14 AM   #7
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Name: Brennan
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I'm happy to hear that our Subaru will probably work then, as it would be great to use our existing vehicle instead of buying something new!

I'm thinking then that maybe we just start with a 13' Scamp, or something similar, with bunks, while our kids are little and then upgrade to something bigger after we've had time to save up.

I sincerely appreciate the input!
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Old 02-13-2015, 09:29 AM   #8
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Yep, you could do well with a 13' for starters, but avoid any thoughts of having one with a bathroom for two reasons;1) It adds significantly to tongue weight, 2) You will need that space for the bunk beds that a front couch makes for the kids.


Here is a link to the real weights of these trailers (vs mfg's fantasy weights)
Trailer Weights in the Real World
And remember, you want to stay under 2000 lbs total weight to be able to carry 200 lbs on the tongue.


Good luck with your wishes and search
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Old 02-13-2015, 09:33 AM   #9
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Glade Valley, North Carolina
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Welcome Brennan
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Old 02-13-2015, 09:45 AM   #10
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Name: Jay
Trailer: Boler 1300
Ontario
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Hey Brennan, welcome to FGRV, it a great resource. I have a young family too and there are 5 of us. we just bought a 13' boler this fall and hope to use it a lot. We saw it as an upgrade from our tent. my advice is to get into a few different trailers to see what size and style best fits your comfort.
as for a TV, i own both a 2004 GMC Canyon 5cyl. and a 6 cyl. Dodge Caravan. Both tow the trailer handily and I enjoy each for different reasons but you shouldn't think a midsize truck will outperform your van in many ways. My truck is decent on gas, but i actually think my van is better. my truck is a quad cab but my family is way more comfortable in the van and for longer trips I sure appreciate being able to put my girls in the 3rd row seats for a buffer, the truck cab is way too close. The girls aren't obnoxious its just when they sit 16" behind you, you hear everything all trip long.
I really like my truck a lot and I think the new colorado/ canyon looks amazing but like Wayne says, don't be fooled by the hype. In our case, there is no doubt ever, if we are going on a trip, it is with the minivan.
Good luck on your search and have fun!
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Old 02-13-2015, 09:49 AM   #11
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Name: Denis
Trailer: trillium 15
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WELCOME

You will find LOTS of good info , as you have already . start of with what you can afford , and it will make for much more enjoyment . the kids will grow to love it and spending time together is something money cant buy . have a great one ...
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