Ready to roll in Florida - Fiberglass RV


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Old 12-04-2016, 01:49 PM   #1
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Name: Billy Sharpstick
Trailer: Burro - '99 wide body 14
Florida
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Ready to roll in Florida

My wife and I are on the verge of retirement. We have been active tent campers all our lives(including several years in the desert at Burning Man!). We were at a group outing and one of our friends has a freshly restored '65 13' Shasta and we fell in love with it. He sleeps lightly, so we were unable to steal it from him so we've decided to bite the bullet and find our own. I'm pretty strongly leaning toward a FG shell camper though for its advantages.
We are looking for 13', but no more than 15'. I have a V6 Highlander rated at 5,000 lbs, but don't want to push it.
Couch is optional, but good bed is important. Bathroom is not, we have a portable marine toilet for night time use. Fridge, stove, are nice, but we would probably set up an outside kitchen in good weather. We're in Florida. AC is a must, but I can always add one.
I don't mind a little touching up, but would like one pretty much ready to use. (I have enough handyman projects already, and life is short!)
My question at this point is how do I narrow it down to specific brands, Casita, Scamp, Burro, U-Haul, etc.? Are there any good rating and comparison resources out there?
Our budget, we're hoping to find a good one for under $6000. A little less if appliances or major stuff is needed.
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Old 12-04-2016, 05:38 PM   #2
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Name: Norm and Ginny
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You should consider attending the Florida Scamp Camp in Sebring, FL in early February. You can see all kinds of fiberglass trailers and there are often some for sale.
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Old 12-04-2016, 05:43 PM   #3
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Name: Steve
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Good luck Bill. Your budget is at the low end for ready to roll units, but deals can be had. Competition is fierce on the forums. Figure out what what your willing to pay and set up some Craiglist alerts. Flexibility can offset a tight budget. Be careful of units without AC, some roofs weren't designed for the weight of a rooftop AC.
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Old 12-04-2016, 06:30 PM   #4
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Trailer: LilSnoozy 12/01/16, Tug 2012 Dodge Citadel
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What Steve said. We talked to a couple a few years back in a 10 ft Scamp. It did not have factory installed AC and the roof would not support it, so they had a portable AC unit inside. Took up a LOT of space.


I am just thrilled with my 3 day old Lil Snoozy. Mattress is excellent and we both have bad backs. BUT it was ordered new in March or early April and wasn't ready for pickup till this past Thursday. Technically speaking, we discovered one of the paid for options hadn't been installed, so you might say it wasn't ready for pickup anyway. Richard Mickle @ Lil Snoozy and I decided he would refund me the money for that one option, and the next time we were due in South Carolina where the factory is, give him some warning, pay for the option, and stop off and they'd do it then. Seemed to me to be a good way to handle things.
BUT Snoozy is fairly new on the market- not a lot of used ones out there- and I used most of a recent inheritance for mine...


You might check out Parkliner, which has a factory in NC and is highly customizable. It is small but incorporates a LOT of storage, which is scant in most smaller eggs. It also has a bunk option for children, and a large rear dinette and also a smaller front dinette, so you could make up the rear into your bed and leave it up (My snoozy has a dedicated bed- no converta-table beds for me!) They can leave out a bathroom, or even offered once to leave out propane for me(Snoozy is all electric)


But mainly do what has been suggested and attend as many rallies /rendez-vous as you can. We all love to show off our rigs and talk about them and you'll see many different campers..
Of course, if your budget limit is firm and you don't mind a pop-up, you might check out the Aspen which is a motorcycle or 4 cylinder compact car towable...
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Old 12-05-2016, 10:13 AM   #5
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Bill
Your 5000 lb tow limit is the same as my Honda Ridgeline, and my 17' Bigfoot weighs in at 3500 lb, loaded for camping. I'm quite comfortable with that much margin and the Honda pulls it easily. And the Bigfoot is a bit heavier than most 16-17' MFG trailers.

Walt
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Old 12-05-2016, 11:14 AM   #6
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Name: Charles
Trailer: Casita
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Bathroom is the key

I think your size decision is mostly about whether or not you have an enclosed bathroom. They are quite rare in 13 foot rigs. My Honda Pilot ('08) did great on it's first long trip with our Casita 17' LD which I am confident was coming in near 4000 as loaded as we were.

As mentioned above, the shopping is frequently the toughest part. It's near impossible to do a simple search and answer your question. For me, the referral program at Casita worked great, where they hooked me up with owners in my area. A couple phone calls later we were able to see the model we ultimately bought. I'm sure that some of the other brands have a similar system.

One can't stress enough that the FG shell campers don't last long on the market unless they are severely handicapped by damage. I had at least 5 get away before I could get in the car to go look. Having your payment ready to go, and knowing what you want are going to do wonders for the process. I wouldn't worry so much about price until you are SURE what you want. Then you can leap when your model hits the market.

As someone else said, you are on the low end of finding a quality trailer at 6k, but the good news is that resale values are incredibly high on the eggs. For my 13 year old rig I paid just under it's original retail cost, and got a bargain. New Casitas can be scary because of the sticker price, and the long wait, but there is a whole society of folks that buys a new one every year, enjoys it, and sells if for pennies less than they paid, or sometimes more. Whatever you buy, with minimal care you can get back out of it very quickly, and with minimal loss if any.

Since they are in such demand, sites like Craigslist are full of scam postings. You'll learn pretty quick which ones, usually with prices under $4000. I think some of the best bargains are ones with neglected exteriors. The fiberglass looks awful, but can be remarkably easy to revive. If the interior is still weather proof, then you are likely golden.

I'm with you on cooking outdoors. I would love to find one with essentially zero kitchen inside, and give me more elbow room. The first thing we do on arrival is set up the outdoor kitchen.

Good luck on your search, and welcome to the club! We are having a Egg gathering at the Spirit of the Suwannee in Live Oak, FL Jan 14-16 (MLK weekend) called Eggs and S'more. You may find some interesting ones to look at there.
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Old 12-05-2016, 11:33 AM   #7
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Charles may be overstating the resale situation, but not by much. I sold both of my old Casitas for more than I paid for them, admittedly after some major mods and upgrades.

Walt
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Old 12-05-2016, 11:40 AM   #8
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Charles may be overstating the resale situation, but not by much. I sold both of my old Casitas for more than I paid for them, admittedly after some major mods and upgrades.

Walt
I ran into 2 "Casitians" that do just that: They buy new, do some common mods, and then put it on the market when Casita gets way backed up (it was 5 months when I was shopping). 20K for a 5 month wait, or 20K for today? They get snapped up. It would never work for me, as I never put the kind of time in to keep mine spotless.
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Old 12-05-2016, 11:48 AM   #9
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Okay, but mine were older ones, each of which I kept and used for about a year and a half, and my mods were fairly major. I sold each only because I wanted more space to sleep grandkids.
Both sold overnight, one on Craigslist, the other on casitaforum.com.

Walt
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Old 12-05-2016, 11:51 AM   #10
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Okay, but mine were older ones, each of which I kept and used for about a year and a half, and my mods were fairly major. I sold each only because I wanted more space to sleep grandkids.

Walt
I'm actually thinking about upgrading my tow vehicle to have space for the grands. They do tent camping for now, but with 6, I need a versatile plan. We actually worked our way down to the egg. 33' Class A, 27' Class B+, and now the egg. Small is good.
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Old 12-05-2016, 09:38 PM   #11
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Name: Billy Sharpstick
Trailer: Burro - '99 wide body 14
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Got a Burro!

The search is over! Picked up a '99 wide body Burro 14 (Escondido) today. It's in pretty good shape, but needs an AC. Taking that over to another forum. (His name is "Jack". Took me a couple seconds to get it.)
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Old 12-05-2016, 09:59 PM   #12
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The search is over! Picked up a '99 wide body Burro 14 (Escondido) today. It's in pretty good shape, but needs an AC. Taking that over to another forum. (His name is "Jack". Took me a couple seconds to get it.)
Congrats on the find. So much to learn, but so much is easy to do so. Pictures! Come see us in January for an in-state test.

I recall a post that said make sure your tires are fresh (two-three years at most), and bearings recently packed, check your lights and the rest you can fix another day. Something that hadn't occurred to me is that most roadside trailer stuff is designed around TWO axles, so jacks, etc. need to be considered as a single axle flat is a much bigger deal.
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Old 12-06-2016, 05:45 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by sharpstick View Post
The search is over! Picked up a '99 wide body Burro 14 (Escondido) today. It's in pretty good shape, but needs an AC. Taking that over to another forum. (His name is "Jack". Took me a couple seconds to get it.)
Congratulations Bill. You can now change your trailer from "shopping" to the rare "Wide Body Burro" Escondido . I second the recommendations about tires, wheel bearings and lights.....brakes also if you have them.
Dave & Paula
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Old 12-06-2016, 06:45 AM   #14
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Congratulations on the trailer, Billy!

The wide-body Burros are nice, roomy trailers, but not too heavy.

I'd be inclined to go with a window AC unit, but I'm not sure of the best place to put it. Under the front dinette bench near the door, maybe? A google site search on "AC installation" should turn up some old threads.
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