I Broke Down... - Fiberglass RV
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:46 AM   #1
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Name: Michael
Trailer: Looking....
Washington
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I Broke Down...

Several times in the last,,, well it has been over a year but less than 18 months... a 16 / 17' fiberglass RV of interest to me has been posted for sale in our general area. Each has been sold before I could even get a look at at it. These have all gone within 24 or 36 hours of being posted for sale. In one case I made an appointment to look at a Scamp at 6PM the day the the item was advertised, only to be told at 5PM that the trailer had sold.

So this morning I put down a payment on an Escape 17B. As an inveterate cheapskate I am screaming that I could save $5K to $10K getting a used model 10 to 20 years old. I am comforting myself with the fact that I will be able to get exactly what I want with this trailer, That it will be new and shiny, and that I will have it next spring without needing to keep and eye on the classifieds....

I also have 6 months to look for a tow vehicle as our 2003 Sienna is probably not going to cut it. Will probably look for a used AWD Highlander or Pilot as when we are not towing we occasionally need space for 5 adults...

MB
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:41 PM   #2
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Congratulations! Now that you have committed, you can relax and start planning your trips.
Dave and Paula
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Old 08-16-2020, 06:05 AM   #3
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Name: bill
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19; 1977 Trillium 1300
The Mountains of North Carolina
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Selling in 24 to 36 hours is not unusual. Sold our Casita in four hours. You really have to move lightning fast.

Nothing wrong with buying new, and later model used trailers mainly save time (you get it now), but don't save much money. New you can get exactly what you want!
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Old 08-16-2020, 11:39 AM   #4
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Name: BJ
Trailer: 2019 Escape 21' Formerly 2015 Escape 19'
Wisconsin
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sold our 2015 Escape 19 in 2 hours, for only 2000 less than we paid for it.
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Old 08-16-2020, 02:12 PM   #5
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Name: R.T.
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Georgia
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Smile

Well....Your not a cheapskate anymore
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Old 08-16-2020, 04:41 PM   #6
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Trailer: Casita "Cozy-Casa"
Central Virginia
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Make sure the tow vehicle you choose has a FACTORY TOW PACKAGE and it has at least 5K towing capacity AND has AT LEAST 1700lbs Cargo Carry Capacity (AS FOUND ON THE YELLOW/WHITE label inside the door jamb with a picture of a tire on it usually) DO NOT SETTLE FOR ANYTHING LESS!!!! There are vehicles out there that meet this MINIMUM requirement - If you do not meet this MINIMUM requirement you will need to ask prospective sellers to send you a photo of the door sticker to save time in figuring out which one will work.
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Old 08-16-2020, 07:04 PM   #7
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Name: R.R.
Trailer: Escape 21
California
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We towed an Escape 17B with a 2013 Highlander SE AWD and it was a great TV for it. All Gen 2 SE and now for GEN3 XLE & up have tow package as standard equipment. May not have the factory receiver, however that can be obtained with bumper modification kit. That keeps your hitch several inches higher which is good going in/out of gas stations, etc.

Congrats on the new Escape to be & best of luck finding the TV.
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Old 08-16-2020, 08:23 PM   #8
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Name: Daniel
Trailer: 1994 Casita 16 Liberty
Washington
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Buying new

Rushed to buy a used Casita to find people ahead of me. Had time to explain to them as they had $$$ that a new Casita was a better deal as they sell for not much more than a used one. Convinced they left and I bought the used Casita!!
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Old 08-17-2020, 08:24 PM   #9
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Name: Rich
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We bought our 2 year old Scamp 16 last year at the end of the season. The owners were asking about $2000 below new. The camper was about an hour and half away. Based on how it was spec'd, photos, and conversation with the owner, we committed to buying it the day they listed it and paid their asking price. No regrets...except now that we've been bitten by the fiberglass RV bug, I'm starting to study that Escape web site. The 17B is the one we would have bought if the Scamp had not come along. As it stands, we're glad we jumped on this one so that we had something when COVID-19 hit last winter.
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Old 10-05-2020, 05:48 AM   #10
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Name: Eric
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I looked for about 6 months when I bought my first fiberglass camper 4 years ago. Nothing would stay on the market long enough to get to see it. I finally bought a used Scamp 16 and I loved it. Used it for 3 year and sold it. Funny thing though after I bought it there was always two or three available on the local market for weeks at a time. When I went to sell mine it took several months and a lot of window shopper. You never know how the market will go.
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Old 10-05-2020, 06:01 AM   #11
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Could have sold my Bigfoot last weekend and it's not even for sale LOL. Neighbor saw it on the front lawn and saw a buddies in the driveway and thought I had bought a new trailer and was selling the old. Apparently see has had an eye on my trailer for sometime.
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Old 10-05-2020, 06:58 AM   #12
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Name: Perry
Trailer: 2018 Escape 5.0
Lanesboro, Minnesota, between Whalan and Fountain
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If you read Trailer Weights In The Real World you'll find various Escape 17B's weigh around 3,000#'s fully loaded with outliers at 3,340 and 2,660#'s.

We pulled our loaded 16' side bath Scamp at 3,000#'s fully loaded for six years and our Casita Spirit Basic at 2,700#'s for five years with our 2003 Honda Odyssey. We easily had 50,000+ miles towing those two campers. There was never any drama and the Odyssey was perfect for our needs. Unless you have an older Sienna I'd give it a try before spending money on a new Tug. There are many here who pull with Sienna's and Odysseys.

Enjoy,

Perry
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Old 10-05-2020, 08:48 AM   #13
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Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsedwebt View Post
Make sure the tow vehicle you choose has a FACTORY TOW PACKAGE and it has at least 5K towing capacity AND has AT LEAST 1700lbs Cargo Carry Capacity (AS FOUND ON THE YELLOW/WHITE label inside the door jamb with a picture of a tire on it usually) DO NOT SETTLE FOR ANYTHING LESS!!!! There are vehicles out there that meet this MINIMUM requirement - If you do not meet this MINIMUM requirement you will need to ask prospective sellers to send you a photo of the door sticker to save time in figuring out which one will work.
For many vehicles in this class, there are no factory tow packages. Most are built from the factory with the necessary mechanical enhancements to achieve the rating for the model and trim. Older Siennas and Highlanders are an exception (c. 2010 and older).

I mention that because I kept badgering the staff at a Honda dealer when I bought my used Pilot, and they acted confused. I previously owned one of the older Siennas that lacked the factory tow prep package (bought pre-trailer) and wanted to make sure the Pilot was tow-ready. Turned out all units came from the factory ready to tow the full rating.

More often in this class, towing prep consists of accessories and equipment added after manufacture. These can easily be added to a used unit. For example, I believe some newer Pilots require a dealer-installed transmission cooler to bump the rating from 3500# to 5000# on 4WD trims. More often it’s just a hitch, wiring, and brake controller, which can be added by any competent mechanic. Some manufacturers include factory-integrated full trailer wiring (Pilot), while others do not (Highlander). Something to factor into the cost of the purchase.

Best bet is to download and read the towing section of the owner’s manual for any vehicle you’re looking to buy. Make sure you’re looking at the same model year, since equipment and specs can change from year to year, even if there are no visible differences. If any factory-installed equipment is required, a dealer can look up the VIN of a used vehicle to determine the build specs. (Wish I’d known that when I was buying the Pilot. It would have saved a lot of misunderstanding at the dealer.)
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Old 10-05-2020, 09:49 AM   #14
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Name: Perry
Trailer: 2018 Escape 5.0
Lanesboro, Minnesota, between Whalan and Fountain
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
For many vehicles in this class, there are no factory tow packages. Most are built from the factory with the necessary mechanical enhancements to achieve the rating for the model and trim. Older Siennas and Highlanders are an exception (c. 2010 and older).

I mention that because I kept badgering the staff at a Honda dealer when I bought my used Pilot, and they just acted confused. I previously owned one of the older Siennas that lacked the factory tow prep package (bought pre-trailer) and wanted to make sure the Pilot was tow-ready. It was.

More often in this class, towing prep consists of accessories and equipment added after manufacture. These can easily be added to a used unit. For example, I believe some newer Pilots require an add-on transmission cooler to bump the rating from 3500# to 5000# on 4WD trims. More often it’s just a hitch and wiring, which can be added by any competent mechanic.

Best bet is to download and read the owner’s manual for the model and year you’re looking to buy. Then, if any factory-installed equipment is required, a dealer can look up the VIN of a used vehicle to determine the build specs. (Wish I’d known that when I was buying the Pilot. It would have saved a lot of misunderstanding at the dealer.)

Some manufacturers include factory-integrated full trailer wiring (Pilot), while others do not (Highlander). It’s something to factor into the cost of the purchase.


Our 2003 Odyssey was sent for burial after it was left for two winters without use and stored on black dirt (don't ever store on black dirt - RUST!). It did have 280,000 miles, original engine and transmission, one set of struts, and one set of brake pads. Yes, we live rural and 90% of the driving was at 55-65 mph.

We purchased the Odyssey used at 90,000 miles. To pull our Scamp I installed a Prodigy brake controller, Reese hitch, and wired the 7 pin connector myself.

I used an 8 or 10 gauge wire (don't remember exactly) to the hitch, Anderson connectors, and an 8 or 10 gauge wire to the distribution box in the camper, again if I remember correctly. By installing a larger wire we could charge our battery in half the time. I also found we could idle the Odyssey for an hour and get a great charge on the battery.

I installed a transmission cooler and changed the transmission fluid every 50,000 miles.

Had we not stored that Odyssey on black dirt we'd still be driving it today. It was replaced with a Subaru Outback, since we now have a F150 to pull our Escape 5th wheel.

It amazes me the people who pull with simple 2" hitches attached to their bumper only. Get a proper hitch that attaches to the frame/unibody with decent attachment points. Around 2015 our Odyssey was rear ended with our trike hitch on the receiver. They hit us perfectly, so the Reese Hitch was bent in about an inch, plus a dented rear door, but the unibody was unscathed. We collected $2,300 for the repairs that we never had done.

Enjoy,

Perry
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2018 Escape 5.0 TA - 2019 Ford F-150, 3.5 V6 Ecoboost,

Previous Eggs - 2001 Scamp 16' Side Bath, 2007 Casita 17' Spirit basic, no bath, water or tanks, that we regret selling, 2003 Bigfoot 25B25RQ, that we also regret selling
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Old 10-06-2020, 03:13 PM   #15
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Central Virginia
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I understand that many people THINK they can add a tow package and they are good to go for the upgraded tow rating. I do not want to start a back and forth about this. I am just stating the simple truth - the consumer CANNOT LEGALLY CHANGE factory produced tow ratings or cargo capacity ratings PERIOD. IF there is a problem of any sort in the future YOU will be responsible - forget about warranty.
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Old 10-06-2020, 06:04 PM   #16
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I did not intend to suggest otherwise. My point was merely that optional factory tow packages are rare in this class of vehicle. The ratings are fixed according to model and trim.

That means you generally do not have to find out whether a particular vehicle has the right optional equipment. You do have to make sure you shop for the right model and trim. The owner’s manual will tell you which versions carry the rating you’re looking for.
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Old 10-07-2020, 06:54 AM   #17
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Trailer: 2013 Escape 19; 1977 Trillium 1300
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Jon is right. Trucks will have a myriad of tow package options, mid sized and small SUVs, not so much.

In the somewhat rare case where the manufacturer offers a tow package, be sure to get one FROM the factory and NOT the dealer. One SUV I am considering has a factory tow package for $800. Dealers will try to convince you that they can just add a hitch for $400 and its the same thing. Its not, not even close. Only people that buy without doing research first get screwed like this. It seems like a lot of people are willing to do the research, but they tend to do it after they buy. I've never understood that approach.

Since your plan is to buy used, just do thorough research on the exact vehicle. There are some VIN look up sites where you can find out exactly how the vehicle was equipped from the factory. As far as I know, neither the Highlander or Pilot have optional factory tow packages, but different years and engine combinations will have different ratings.
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Old 10-07-2020, 07:07 AM   #18
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Curious, Bill... is that “one SUV” the Palisade? Is that still on your short list? What’s in the factory tow package?
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Old 10-07-2020, 07:50 AM   #19
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Trailer: 2013 Escape 19; 1977 Trillium 1300
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Telluride. Factory tow package includes 7 pin wiring, self leveling rear suspension and factory receiver hitch. $795 option. People pay thousands more to get some fluffy option but neglect the tow package. They also sell an optional hitch that doesn’t include the rest. And aftermarket 7 pin wiring installation can void warranty.

Waiting for the euphoria to settle down. Right now, demand exceeds supply and dealers are adding markup OVER MSRP. Local dealer is adding $8,000..... We can wait!
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Old 10-07-2020, 08:07 AM   #20
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Right, thanks. I was thinking Kia but got the names crossed. Wondering if the wiring harnesses are actually different, or simply that they install the connector when you order the package. Honda takes the latter approach with the Pilot, except it’s done by the dealer.
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