In search of unforgettable memories - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-18-2016, 03:39 PM   #1
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Name: Ginny
Trailer: '09 Scamp 13' w/ Bath
Oklahoma
Posts: 97
In search of unforgettable memories

or something dramatic like that....

Hi! I am on the lookout for a Scamp 13 w/ bathroom... preferably something of the 2000+ yr variety. We have a minivan now, but are hoping to get a Subaru Outback in about 18 months, and feel this setup/weight will best suit our camping style and our future towing capacity.

I am loving the desk job life now, but I used to work for REI and have a bunch of sweet camping gear- but, age is calling (not that I am THAT old, 36) and a camper is sounding like more and more fun for our fly fishing adventures, rather than setting up a 'glamping' tent. Especially when we want to bring the dogs, and if we want to go from river to river... a lot less set up and break down. Not to mention the Scamps are just so darn cool.

I am actively scavenging ebay, this site, craigslist, rv-trader, and fiberglass-rv-4-sale.com looking for deals, but if you see one before I do, please feel free to let me know!

I would love to be in the $9-11k range, but other prices aren't out of the question. We are also happy to travel to pick up- we live in Oklahoma.

I have been stalking the forums here for a while, and I have learned a lot- thank you in advance for the help, you all seem super nice and knowledgeable. I look forward to getting to know you all a bit more!

Sincerely,
Ginny
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Old 07-19-2016, 04:31 AM   #2
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Name: Dave
Trailer: Casita SD17 2006
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Welcome to FGRV Ginny. You may want to look into a 16'er for the extra room. Not much difference in the weight but the 3 feet can sure make a difference to you. A rally is a good place to see many makes and models before you pull the trigger. They all look great on paper but one step inside tells a lot. Also check the "real world weights" thread for what these TT weigh at camping weights. Might make a difference in what tow vehicle you buy. Good luck in your search.
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Old 07-19-2016, 08:45 AM   #3
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Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 Std
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fieldphoto View Post
...age is calling (not that I am THAT old, 36)...

Don't expect too many here to feel sorry for you because of your age…

I like your plan. Two people in a 13' Scamp with bathroom does take a mutual willingness to share a very small space. Expect close to 2000 pounds fully packed, with a tongue weight in the 220-240 range.

Subaru Outbacks have some towing caveats you need to consider. For one, tongue weight is limited to 200 pounds. That creates challenges, even with a 13'er. Sticking with a single propane tank helps, and you won't want to carry much cargo in the back of the vehicle. Also, the tow rating is halved when climbing long grades in high ambient temperatures due to possible transmission overheating. As Dave suggests, you might want to investigate some alternatives.

Know that full bathrooms (toilet, shower, HW heater) are a fairly recent addition to the options list for the 13'ers (early 2000's?). Your budget sounds about right for a clean, functional 5-10 year-old unit; you may have to cough up a bit more if it's near-new. There aren't a lot out there, so you may also have to travel to score a good one. The best deals go quickly, as in hours, not days.

Also be aware that the 13'ers are pretty low-slung, and the plumbing hangs down even lower. You won't be doing any off-roading with the stock set-up.

A 16'er will weigh in the 2400-2600 range with around 275 pounds on the hitch, which pretty much rules out an Outback. It has a bit more ground clearance, though the extra length brings its own issues. There are more of them out there with full bathrooms at a variety of price points and age/condition. I wouldn't automatically rule out a pre-2000 unit; maintenance matters more than age. The Buyer's Checklist is a helpful resource when inspecting any used trailer.

Welcome to the forum, Ginny, and best wishes on your "egg hunt"!
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Old 07-19-2016, 11:55 AM   #4
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Name: carolyn
Trailer: 2005 casita sd
Michigan
Posts: 39
Outback and 13' with bath?

We found our Jimmy did not have the muscle to pull our 16' Casita with bath so we got a 2008 Chevy Trailblazer. It works great! And for the 2 of us, more room than a 13'. Keep looking and you will find the TT of your dreams, but do research the pulling capacity of the TVs you are considering.
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Old 07-19-2016, 02:16 PM   #5
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Name: Ginny
Trailer: '09 Scamp 13' w/ Bath
Oklahoma
Posts: 97
Thank you all for your replies!
I knew we would get great sarcasm.... er, i mean... advice from the folks here

I am with you all, the 16' is great, and it is just 'slightly' heavier than the 13'... but that small change is enough to make it too much for a Subaru Outback, rated at 2700#. Not to mention those 3 extra feet mean 3 ft more of space to put stuff that adds to the weight as well.

I read a fascinating article the other day on the difference between Euro and US tow rates, and why they are often so different... and without explaining it all here, one of the big take-aways was really understanding tongue weight, axle weight and where to load the trailer, not just looking at the maximum weight. It was super informative, and further adds to the conclusion that the 13' is the right trailer for us!

Ya'll will get a chuckle, I have about 5-6 tabs open on my browser, and I hit the refresh button every hour or two... because I know we are going to have to jump on that deal! We have financing lined up with our bank, and should be able to hit the road over the weekend to head most anywhere. Luckily Oklahoma is central at least.

Anyways, enough rambling... thank you all again for your support. I am sure after we get moving on this we will have lots and lots of questions!

If you have any other thoughts or suggestions, please share.

-Ginny
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Old 07-19-2016, 04:02 PM   #6
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Trailer: 22' Airstream Formerly 16' Scamp
British Columbia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fieldphoto View Post
or something dramatic like that....

Hi! I am on the lookout for a Scamp 13 w/ bathroom... preferably something of the 2000+ yr variety. We have a minivan now, but are hoping to get a Subaru Outback in about 18 months, and feel this setup/weight will best suit our camping style and our future towing capacity.


Sincerely,
Ginny
I towed for a number of years with an Outback and BIG issue you will have with it is the 200lb tongue weight limit.

With the front bath on a 13' Scamp you will be lucky once the trailer is loaded up to keep it under that. Keep in mind anything you load in the rear of the car behind the rear wheels also discount tongue weight limit. It would have no issue pulling a standard 13' Scamp.
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Old 07-21-2016, 04:54 PM   #7
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Name: Ginny
Trailer: '09 Scamp 13' w/ Bath
Oklahoma
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well, it didn't take long! Assuming all goes well, this little beauty will be ours!
Be prepared for 1000 questions upcoming.

https://atlanta.craigslist.org/nat/rvd/5671263746.html
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Old 07-21-2016, 07:35 PM   #8
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Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 Std
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Congratulations, Ginny!

Looks like a nice one.

Check dates on the tires before you pull it home. Trailer tires age out, they don't wear out. If original the tires on this one are at the end of their lifespan. The date is stamped in the sidewall as WWYY (week and year). And if so, I'd point that out to the dealer as a safety hazard and request they be changed before you sign the contract.

Make sure the RV shop has done a bearing service. That should be a standard reconditioning item at a dealer, but ask to be sure.

And, of course check out all the appliances, lights,... Have them plug in and cool down the fridge a day ahead.

Hope it works out for you!

Question for all: I noticed it has the new style radius jalousies. I was surprised to see them on a 2009. I know my 2008 has the old-style sliders. Anybody know when Scamp changed?
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Old 07-21-2016, 08:10 PM   #9
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Name: Ginny
Trailer: '09 Scamp 13' w/ Bath
Oklahoma
Posts: 97
Jon,
Well, you have hit on 2 of my concerns... So let's talk about them, and I'll also fill you in on the story. As usual this all came about quickly. We had flights from Oklahoma to virginia this weekend for a vacation, and are now cancelling the flights and making the drive instead, with a stop thru Ga to pick up the trailer. This means the trailer will go from ga to Virginia then back to Oklahoma, in a time constrained trip. (Are we nuts? Yes.... But, you have to take opportunities when you can get them)

This leads me to a few brutally honest questions/realities, and I appreciate your candid responses.

1. The tires are originals, but barely used. There is a valid spare as well. I am having a relative who happens to live nearby check it out tomorrow before we can get there Saturday... But as far as I know, and I asked the question directly... There is no cracking or 'visible age' on the tire. Doesn't mean it isn't there, but at least they don't look horrible. Am I being completely reckless to drive this thing back to Oklahoma?

2. Same question with the bearings. Is there a way to drive and tell if there are bearing issues? I may be able to convince the dealer (this is a really small town shop) to repack the bearings, but I highly doubt I will be able to get new tires out of the guy, especially for the price I am getting the camper. It is probably a little underpriced $8900 vs what he could have gotten for it $9500-10000.... So getting him to throw anything in is going to be hard.

If I do need to do both of these things before driving, what can I expect the cost to be for new tires and bearing repack?

Thank you for your patience and candor. I do not want to be unsafe, but also would prefer to get home a pond do things local if possible.

Also, if it matters, we will tow the trailer totally dry, so there will be no additional weight or load.
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Old 07-21-2016, 08:44 PM   #10
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In search of unforgettable memories

Ginny, I would not drive on 7 year old tires even if they had 100% tread. Changes happen to the rubber that have nothing to do with being driven. And he knows it! Do a google search on trailer tire age to get some information to demonstrate you know, too. And since the bearings are an unknown quantity, they need to be serviced. We're talking hundreds of miles. I don't see either as an option.

Whatever they say, they surely paid the previous owner far less than $8900 for this trailer. Safe tires and bearings are normal reconditioning items.

The dealer has a service shop. They should just do it. Put on your negotiator hat! Outdated tires and unserviced bearings are a safety hazard. If that doesn't get any traction, how about you pay for the tires and they do the work for free? Then can pick your own brand of tires.

Best wishes! Be tough...
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Old 07-21-2016, 08:45 PM   #11
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Name: Dave
Trailer: Casita SD17 2006
California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fieldphoto View Post
Jon,
Well, you have hit on 2 of my concerns... So let's talk about them, and I'll also fill you in on the story. As usual this all came about quickly. We had flights from Oklahoma to virginia this weekend for a vacation, and are now cancelling the flights and making the drive instead, with a stop thru Ga to pick up the trailer. This means the trailer will go from ga to Virginia then back to Oklahoma, in a time constrained trip. (Are we nuts? Yes.... But, you have to take opportunities when you can get them)

This leads me to a few brutally honest questions/realities, and I appreciate your candid responses.

1. The tires are originals, but barely used. There is a valid spare as well. I am having a relative who happens to live nearby check it out tomorrow before we can get there Saturday... But as far as I know, and I asked the question directly... There is no cracking or 'visible age' on the tire. Doesn't mean it isn't there, but at least they don't look horrible. Am I being completely reckless to drive this thing back to Oklahoma?

2. Same question with the bearings. Is there a way to drive and tell if there are bearing issues? I may be able to convince the dealer (this is a really small town shop) to repack the bearings, but I highly doubt I will be able to get new tires out of the guy, especially for the price I am getting the camper. It is probably a little underpriced $8900 vs what he could have gotten for it $9500-10000.... So getting him to throw anything in is going to be hard.

If I do need to do both of these things before driving, what can I expect the cost to be for new tires and bearing repack?

Thank you for your patience and candor. I do not want to be unsafe, but also would prefer to get home a pond do things local if possible.

Also, if it matters, we will tow the trailer totally dry, so there will be no additional weight or load.
Yes to both question, three tires & bearing repacked, should be around $400 but priceless on the trip.
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Old 07-21-2016, 08:58 PM   #12
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Name: Ginny
Trailer: '09 Scamp 13' w/ Bath
Oklahoma
Posts: 97
Thank you both for replies.... I was thinking along those lines as I was waiting for your reply. Tires look to be pretty cheap, I was thinking I might offer to buy the tires if he will have them on and ready to go for me when I arrive and get him to throw in the wheel bearings for free. We'll see.

Thanks for the candor, it's always helpful to know the difference between 'this is recommended' 'this is highly recommended' and 'this is an absolute must do'.

I'll let you know how my negotiations and bribery goes tomorrow lol
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Old 07-21-2016, 09:04 PM   #13
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I believe an order of magnitude cost for single-axle bearing service is $100 to $150. One can jack up the trailer and wobble and spin the wheels, however this might only catch really bad ones (bearing problems). A re-pack allows a thorough inspection.

Tires are recommended to be replaced at somewhere between three and seven years, depending on your source. This is one of the perennially "popular" (sarcastic eye-roll) topics on RV forums, though I believe no actual blood has been shed on the matter to date. Jon noted above how to read the date code on the tires. If those tires are in fact original, they are definitely at the outside of the aging envelope.

The Craig's List posting has been up 14 days. You might consider not going into this with a mindset that he isn't charging enough. It's just a thought. Be strong, as the right trailer for you is actively seeking you at this very moment.

We bought our Casita sight unseen. When it was delivered, the Mrs. was shocked at how small it actually was inside. However, she has quickly warmed to it and we are enjoying it.

Would it be possible to purchase the trailer and pick it up on the way home to reduce the tow distance? Just a thought, and probably one you have considered.
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Old 07-21-2016, 09:15 PM   #14
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Name: Ginny
Trailer: '09 Scamp 13' w/ Bath
Oklahoma
Posts: 97
Mike ,
Thanks for your notes. Yes, they are confirmed original tires.... And I guess the more I think about it, I'm gonna replace them as soon as I get back here anyways because they are so old, so might as well do it there. The only possible issue here will be logistics, the dealer wants to charge too much, or can't get it done by Saturday afternoon (neither SHOULD be an issue) but I won't know for sure until I talk to him 1st thing tomorrow.

As for the 14 day listing, he had another solid buyer, woman cash in hand from NC who drove all the way down, but when they hooked it up, her poor little Aztec couldn't do the job. They lost a lot of time holding it for her, and then it fell thru. They have had plenty of other interest, and other offers are on the table, I am just lucky to be the next in line. Normally I would think maybe a dealer is feeding me a line to pressure me, but knowing how fast these units sell, especially the 13fts with bathrooms, I am not the least bit surprised. The only reason I am getting a crack at it is because I insisted he take my phone number down a week ago.

Lastly, we could do the pickup on the way back, but it doesn't fit our schedule nearly as well. Unfortunately the route out and the route back will end up being very different, without the sidetracking to get the trailer. It is a remote possibility though, and I appreciate the suggestion. It is easy to get it in our heads that it has to go a particular way, sometimes we forget the most obvious alternatives.

-Ginny
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