Hi I'm New and looking into a Scamp 13 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-02-2017, 12:02 AM   #1
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Name: Joe
Trailer: In The Market
Washington
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Hi I'm New and looking into a Scamp 13

Well, I'm new. We have been camping for about 35 years with a pop-up tent trailer but have recently retired and think a small fiberglass trailer would be better to go traveling with. The kids are gone and setup might be easier for spontaneous trips. We've usually only traveled 50 miles or so and then setup for a week with the pop-up. Now we would like to go further and stay maybe a night or two at a time and see some country. Also it would be a "guest room" when someone shows up and needs to stay a few nights in the driveway :-)

We have a 2009 Subaru Forester and can probably only afford to buy a new car or get a trailer, so we are hoping a Scamp 13 with electric breaks will be the answer. The 2009 Subaru Forester has a 2,400 lb towing capacity. We would be looking to keep it simple and light. Probably no shower/toilet, just a porta-potty.

Also, doesn't seem to be a lot of used ones to pick from and Scamp says it will be about 10 months to build one ready for pick-up.

Any opinions?
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Old 09-02-2017, 02:29 AM   #2
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Trailer: Casita SD17 2006
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Originally Posted by Joe Russell View Post
Well, I'm new. We have been camping for about 35 years with a pop-up tent trailer but have recently retired and think a small fiberglass trailer would be better to go traveling with. The kids are gone and setup might be easier for spontaneous trips. We've usually only traveled 50 miles or so and then setup for a week with the pop-up. Now we would like to go further and stay maybe a night or two at a time and see some country. Also it would be a "guest room" when someone shows up and needs to stay a few nights in the driveway :-)
We have a 2009 Subaru Forester and can probably only afford to buy a new car or get a trailer, so we are hoping a Scamp 13 with electric breaks will be the answer. The 2009 Subaru Forester has a 2,400 lb towing capacity. We would be looking to keep it simple and light. Probably no shower/toilet, just a porta-potty.
Also, doesn't seem to be a lot of used ones to pick from and Scamp says it will be about 10 months to build one ready for pick-up.
Any opinions?
Welcome to FGRV Joe. A Scamp 13 should be a good match but not all 13s have brakes which I recommend with any TT. There have been a number of 13s for sale lately but may not be all that close to you. There are other makes in the same size range you may want to consider also. These FG TTs tend to sell pretty fast, sometimes within hours of a "for sale" ad. You may want to start a thread in the wanted section of what you're looking for, $ budget, features and how far you will travel. That has worked out for a number of folks here . Good luck to you with the search.
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Old 09-02-2017, 07:32 AM   #3
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Name: Jon
Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
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Your Forester should handle a basic 13'er. It won't blast up the hills, but it will get you there. If it is an automatic, I would investigate whether additional transmission cooling is warranted. I'm not sure if your 2009 has a conventional automatic or a CVT.

If you read the towing information in your owner's manual carefully, I think you'll find there's also a 200 pound tongue weight limit. That effectively limits you to a 2000 pound trailer, since most trailers require a minimum of 10% tongue weight for stable towing (boat trailers are the exception). As long as you limit yourself to a single battery and LP tank on the tongue, you should be fine on tongue weight with a 13'er.

Agree with Dave that trailer brakes are a must have, and unfortunately not all used 13'ers do. If they don't, but the axle has a square mounting flange behind the wheel (like my 2008- no brakes but mounting flange), adding brakes is straightforward. If there's no mounting flange (common with older axles), a new axle with brakes is required.

As to availability, you have read the market correctly. Good used ones are hard to find and sell quickly. According to one recent post, as of July Scamp was up to 14 months out on new builds! When did they tell you 10 months? Scamp's deposit is modest and fully refundable up to the day they start your build, so you might go ahead and place an order now to secure a place in the build schedule, but continue searching for a used unit. Guessing others do the same, so once in a while a slot opens up due to a cancellation. I've heard a couple of people got their trailers in less than the usual time that way.

One recent change affecting the Scamp 13 might be of interest to you. In 2014, Scamp started offering a "big bed" option on the Scamp 13 standard- 54"x76" versus 45"x76" for the regular bed. My wife and I find the 45" bed pretty tight. She shares it with one of our kids sleeping head-to-toe, and I split the front bunks with the other. Works for family camping, but for a couple traveling alone, the larger bed might be really nice. The extra 9" was taken from the galley and closet.

There are also a few other 13' options being made besides Scamp, including Happier Camper in Los Angeles, Relic in eastern Washington state, and Armadillo in British Columbia. Weight is similar to a basic Scamp, but be prepared for sticker shock. Cool design and innovative features come at a premium!

Depending on your needs, the smaller Weiscraft Little Joe in Colorado might also work for you. It's narrower for a better tow behind a smaller vehicle and a little lighter as well.
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Old 09-02-2017, 11:28 AM   #4
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Name: Joe
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Thanks for the reply. I called Scamp yesterday and was told that availability would be next July. Maybe the deposit would be a good idea, to get in line.

How long have you been a Scamp owner, and which trailer do you own? What do you like and what would you change for the ways that you use it?

My wife and I are both 5ft 3 or less and have not traveled with our pop-up trailer, just camped for one to two weeks in one spot every year. We know how to do that efficiently but will be pretty green at traveling down the road. Really want to know if this new idea is the way to go. It looks like if it didn't work out or we just did it for a year or two that we wouldn't lose a lot in the investment, but I always try to make a logical decision based on our lifestyle. Thanks for any input.
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Old 09-02-2017, 09:02 PM   #5
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You've gotten some sage advice from others here, including checking your tow vehicle's owner's manual and the sticker by the driver's door.

It sounds to me like a small fiberglass trailer might be well suited for you after years of the pop up trailer. One benefit could be less set up and break down, at your destination, and maybe less preparation. Some parks with bears will accept your hard sided fiberglass trailer, but not soft pop up trailers. They offer a bit more privacy, safety and security.

Do your homework, then start making new memories. Time flies.
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Old 09-02-2017, 10:37 PM   #6
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Trailer: 2017 Scamp 16 Deluxe
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Joe,

Along with the other good advice already provided, I would strongly suggest
trying to attend a rally and actually step inside many trailers on the "open
house" day. Maybe you can take a tent, rent a cabin, or stay in a nearby motel.

We had our Scamp13 for 3.5 years and enjoyed every minute.

After we recently (last fall) bought a 2016 Ford F-150 XLT, we upgraded to
a Scamp 16 Deluxe Layout A (with front sofa/bunk-beds) about 6 months ago.
Very happy with it too.

I would probably be inclined to put down the $500 deposit with Scamp and
then maybe continue to search for a used one that meets your needs or stay
in touch regularly with Scamp about trade-ins or canceled orders.

We worked with Wayne Pitlick and found him to be extremely helpful.

Ray
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Old 09-02-2017, 10:53 PM   #7
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July is not as bad as it might sound as camping season for people in northern US will be winding down, starting up again in late Spring (unless you plan to head south this winter). So depending on where you like to travel, you might only miss a month or two of camping.

The stock Scamp is very, very basic. No grey or black water tanks, no furnace, no AC, no water heater, no refrigerator, etc. The good news is by not including all of that stuff, it keeps the weight down!

For us, the big bed would be a must. As my wife and I camp for longer periods, the closer the bed size is to what we have at home, the happier we are. Our last trip was one month long. Our upcoming trip will be three weeks long. We are not weekend campers. If we just camped for a couple of days at a time, it would not be as critical. But the small Scamp bed is really small.

Of course, in my wife's case, AC and toilet were also requirements, so we quickly worked up in size. Fortunately, we have more than enough tow vehicle.

I'd put a big bed Scamp on order, then hit the next rally that you can, maybe hit more than one! You will quickly see the pluses and minuses, lots of different brands and sizes, lots of different tow vehicles too. You may find the Scamp is right for you, but perhaps you have an option or two you see you will want to add. Easier to do before the build begins.

On bed size, realize a queen bed is 60 inches wide, a double or full sized bed is 54 inches, and a twin is 39 inches. So Scamp's regular bed at 44 inches is most similar to a twin. The Scamp "big" bed is a full sized bed.
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Old 09-03-2017, 06:38 AM   #8
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Name: Jon
Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
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Hi I'm New and looking into a Scamp 13

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Russell View Post
How long have you been a Scamp owner, and which trailer do you own? What do you like and what would you change for the ways that you use it?
We've owned a Scamp 13 (layout 1) for 5 years. We bought it used locally, and it is very basic: stove, furnace, icebox, screen door, and not much else. It works well for us because we mainly use it as a bedroom for four and daytime/evening lounge when the weather isn't cooperating. The small dinette bed was an issue we had to work around, as I've already described. I really like the design of the sofa/bunk- easy to convert, roomier beds than pictures make it appear, and very comfortable sofa mode with a nicely-angled backrest (unlike bolt-upright dinette seats).

We destination camp without hook-ups in state and county parks with facilities in Arizona and central/southern California, cooking and eating outside. We've never used the stove, but I like having it just in case we get caught in some really bad weather. We use the small icebox for protected dry food storage and a larger ice chest for refrigerated storage. Didn't think I'd use the furnace, but it has turned out to be unexpectedly nice for cold evenings/mornings during winter camping in the Arizona desert.

If I were ordering a replacement 13'er today for our current needs, I would order the big bed, option package (fridge, screen door, and other goodies), furnace, and a powered roof vent. Throw in a couple of 12V charging outlets for good measure.

For longer trips and touring, I would personally want an enclosed toilet, larger galley with fridge, and grey water tank so we could be fully functional without facilities or outdoor cooking. While it is possible to have all those things in a Scamp 13 (for 2 people only), my preference is for a 16' layout 4. I have a 3500/350 rated tow vehicle, so I'm already set in that department. When the timing is right I'll probably make the jump, but I'm in no hurry.
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Old 09-03-2017, 09:25 AM   #9
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Name: Lisa
Trailer: 1992 Scamp 13'
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Hi Joe,

Welcome. I'm somewhat new here and was in your situation in August.
I searched for 4 days, then found my Scamp 13, I was on line looking continuously.

I did find 3 within a 75-mile radius. Two 13' Scamps and one 16' Casita.

For me, I didn't know what I really wanted, but my theory was to buy something then decide from there what options I need and then sell to repurchase.


I think you may have an advantage here as you've camped more with your pop-out and you likely know which features you must have.

As a reference point for you, I paid $4,000 for a 13' Scamp, bunk bed option, nothing but sink, 3-way fridge, awning, fantastic fan, escape hatch, porta-potti and 2 burner stove. It also has a screen door, LOVE that feature!

Things that it did not come with are AC (which I've put a window unit in), boy it's a hot summer, and it doesn't have a heater, but I bought a product called Little Buddy that runs on propane.

The owner sold it for $4k because it was missing the 12 gallon water tank (I've since purchased and installed), plus it had a repair spot for when the tire blew out and must have messed up some fiberglass in the tire well.

I have plans to most likely turn the front bunk bed area into a small dinette. Many folks have pictures here that have done that modification. This way the rear bed can stay a bed.

I have since seen some other Scamps/Casitas listed at the $5,100-8,500 range in the 16' size. They go quickly. I have considered one, but then I'd need to sell my 13' and I'm not ready to part with my first Scamp, it really is nice and does have all that I need at this time.
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Old 09-03-2017, 09:31 AM   #10
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Name: bill
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Used Scamps are less likely to have the big bed option.
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Old 09-03-2017, 10:26 AM   #11
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Name: Ray
Trailer: 2017 Scamp 16 Deluxe
Missouri
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Just FYI -

Our Scamp13 was a Layout1 with the big bed (54") and we liked it!

Currently, the only way to get the larger 54" bed in a Scamp16 is to
order the Deluxe. In some respects, our new Scamp16D-A (with sofa/bunks)
is much like a molded Standard Layout 4 .... only with the bigger bed.
That bigger bed is a large part of why we went with the Scamp16 Deluxe.

Ray
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Old 09-04-2017, 12:01 PM   #12
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Joe,

Our Scamp13L1BB was very much what you described.

I tried to configure it to be light enough to be pulled with a Honda CRV (rated by Honda
to pull only 1500lbs.

We left off the bathroom, AC, furnace, awning, wood interior, etc.
We did get the "options" package with refrigerator, screen door, etc.
We got all possible overhead cabinets, the grey water tank, the top-mounted fan,
and extra 110v outlets and lights.

We went to the west coast, east coast, gulf coast, upper peninsula, etc.
We really enjoyed that trailer and rarely, if ever, regretted the minimalist
configuration.

I'm sure that you too would enjoy a Scamp13.

Best of luck on your decisions!

Ray
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Old 09-04-2017, 01:43 PM   #13
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After you look into a Scamp, will you look under it too? Just fooling around.

FG eggs hold their value well. If you buy one and decide to sell it, you should not lose much. Scamp can refer you to an owner in your area so you can get inside and look. Or watch craigslist for used ones, but beware of phony ads... do not send money for a trailer you have not seen in person.
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Old 09-05-2017, 10:49 PM   #14
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Name: Joe
Trailer: In The Market
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Thanks everyone. No one is discouraging our basic idea. The plan as of this evening is to determine the most important options for us and give Wayne a call again at Scamp. Talk things out for a while and see if we can put down a deposit and possibly change some options around before production starts, in case we come to any different conclusions in the 10 months it takes for completion. Who knows what new ideas may come up in that amount of time, maybe even a different vehicle.

With a fiberglass trailer instead of a pop-up tent trailer, we will probably change our style of camping/travelling. I think will be prepared to make more qualified decisions in the next couple of months, long before production begins. But I think we need to get in line since everyone here and out on the internet seem to be very happy with Scamps for the most part. I do want to find one near by to go inside. Anyone in the Seattle/Tacoma area interested in giving us a "tour" of their Scamp 13?
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