Hi, I'm Elizabeth - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-29-2015, 12:44 PM   #1
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Name: Elizabeth
Trailer: TrailsWest
Washington
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Hi, I'm Elizabeth

I've been reading this site for a while and decided to join so I could get some advice from the knowledgeable folk on here.

I'm currently in the market for a trailer that I can tow with my van. My current camping setup is a tent and I'm thinking that a small trailer would be more convenient. I've had experience with pop-up tent trailers and it was nice but still a lot of set up and tear down.

My TV is a 2000 Dodge Grand Caravan with AWD and a tow package. I think it's rated to tow 3500# (it might be 5K) but from my experience in towing pop-up trailers, I'd prefer to keep the weight less than 2000 pounds.

My thought is to get a used 13 ft Boler/Scamp/Casita or something similar and try it out to see how it works. I looked at a Boler that was for sale but decided that it looked too much like a project. At this point, I'd like to get something in good enough shape that I could just go camping without spending a lot of money or time. Of course it doesn't help that I'm limited in how far I can travel to look at one by the fact that I have a full time job.

So, any comments? Trailers for sale in Eastern WA or northern ID? I'd like to keep the cost to less than $5000. Is that reasonable for a trailer in decent condition?
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Old 08-29-2015, 01:20 PM   #2
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Welcome, Elizabeth!

It may take some patience, but I think you've got a shot at finding something workable in your price range. It will likely be an older one, but that alone should not disqualify a trailer from consideration. The Buyer's Checklist is a helpful resource. It will help you ask the right questions when talking with a potential seller, and, of course, help you not to miss anything when you do make the trip to look at a trailer. The second link is a general checklist for any molded fiberglass trailer. The first is a guide to special issues with old Bolers (with thanks to member Ian G.).

It wouldn't hurt to post in the "wanted" section of the Marketplace. I presume you have also found Molded Fiberglass Travel Trailers For Sale. And keep an eye on local Craigslist.
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Old 08-29-2015, 01:29 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elizabeth EWA View Post
My TV is a 2000 Dodge Grand Caravan with AWD and a tow package. I think it's rated to tow 3500# (it might be 5K) but from my experience in towing pop-up trailers, I'd prefer to keep the weight less than 2000 pounds.
How many miles are on your van? Is it in good running condition? Thnxs
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Old 08-29-2015, 05:12 PM   #4
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Thanks for the checklist links

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Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
Welcome, Elizabeth!

It may take some patience, but I think you've got a shot at finding something workable in your price range. It will likely be an older one, but that alone should not disqualify a trailer from consideration. The Buyer's Checklist is a helpful resource. It will help you ask the right questions when talking with a potential seller, and, of course, help you not to miss anything when you do make the trip to look at a trailer. The second link is a general checklist for any molded fiberglass trailer. The first is a guide to special issues with old Bolers (with thanks to member Ian G.).

It wouldn't hurt to post in the "wanted" section of the Marketplace. I presume you have also found Molded Fiberglass Travel Trailers For Sale. And keep an eye on local Craigslist.
I'd already found the one for Boler trailers and I didn't buy the trailer I looked at as a result of what I learned from that checklist (too much rust on the frame for me to be comfortable)
I've been keeping an eye on the Molded Fiberglass Travel Trailers For Sale site as well as my local Craigslist (I missed a Hunter Compact I because I didn't get on it quick enough)
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Old 08-29-2015, 05:20 PM   #5
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How many miles are on your van? Is it in good running condition? Thnxs
Its got over 160k miles and is in reasonable condition. The only problem that I know about is the rear shocks are leaking but still usable (although I may decide different when I start towing) I've been very happy with it but I'm starting to think about what I might want for a next vehicle.
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Old 08-29-2015, 05:33 PM   #6
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Sorry, double entry
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Old 08-29-2015, 05:41 PM   #7
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Hi Elizabeth and welcome to the group.


While an occasional FGRV in good shape, and in your price range, shows up, they usually don't last long. Even in North Central WA (Wenatchee) area, I have seen them get sold within a day or two. That said you will have to be ready to pounce as soon as you see one, job or no job (LOL).


Follow Craig's List as well as this site: Molded Fiberglass Travel Trailers For Sale | Fiberglass RV's For Sale
for anything east of the Cascades, including near-by Canadian listings on the link I posted. Right now there is a 20% discount on $CDN prices when paid in $USD


Good Luck Hunting
Molded Fiberglass Travel Trailers For Sale | Fiberglass RV's For Sale
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Old 08-29-2015, 09:05 PM   #8
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Good luck! We just bought ours fur $4k a few weeks ago in very good condition, so it can be done. we tie ours with a sienna van, and also feel most comfortable towing 2000lvs with the van; our goal is less than 2k fully loaded (we are minimalists, so I know we can get there easily.) we just upgraded from a 1500lbcanned ham., so knew we didn't want heavier.

Plus, staying light gives us flexibility with our next car purchase. Most likely anothr minivan, but this way we have a tiny bit if downward dlexibility
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Old 08-30-2015, 06:45 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elizabeth EWA View Post
Its got over 160k miles and is in reasonable condition. The only problem that I know about is the rear shocks are leaking but still usable (although I may decide different when I start towing) I've been very happy with it but I'm starting to think about what I might want for a next vehicle.
Not a large expense replacing rear shocks. Note our Nissan Van had 200,000 miles on it when we started towing the 23' and it went another 100K with no drive train issues. Generally speaking Mini vans make great tow vehicles.

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Originally Posted by Zennifer View Post
Plus, staying light gives us flexibility with our next car purchase. Most likely anothr minivan, but this way we have a tiny bit if downward dlexibility

The new Chrysler vans with close to 300HP/6 speed tranny, stable platform/wheelbase, etc will easily handle the suggested tow rating, The Honda and Toyota offerings may be even better considering the historical reliability records.
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Old 08-30-2015, 09:45 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elizabeth EWA View Post
Its got over 160k miles and is in reasonable condition. The only problem that I know about is the rear shocks are leaking but still usable (although I may decide different when I start towing) I've been very happy with it but I'm starting to think about what I might want for a next vehicle.

Shocks at 160k miles and/or leaking are long gone and should be replaced before you start doing any towing. Actually they wouldn't pass safety inspection in any state that does inspections and should be replaced ASAP anyway.

And FWIW, Horsepower should be one of the last considerations in making a selection for a tow vehicle for FGRV's. While that might let you go over a few passes 10 MPH faster, it will always be drinking more fuel, towing or not. In the mentioned case (300 hp) size doesn't really matter.
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Old 08-30-2015, 09:50 AM   #11
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Name: Naomi
Trailer: 1972 Boler 13 Foot
British Columbia
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Originally Posted by Elizabeth EWA View Post
Its got over 160k miles and is in reasonable condition. The only problem that I know about is the rear shocks are leaking but still usable (although I may decide different when I start towing) I've been very happy with it but I'm starting to think about what I might want for a next vehicle.
If you're looking for a new tow vehicle consider a Honda Odyssey Touring. We got one and we pull our 1972 - 13 foot Boler and it tows like a dream. I totally love my Odyssey and hope it never wears out or breaks down as I don't want anything else! I much prefer it to the Toyota Sienna which we also looked at. Good luck in your search for a Glass Egg. There are always a few for sale in the Lower Mainland of BC just north of you - and your US dollar will go a long ways here! You can look on Craigs List Vancouver.
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