Need Help I found a 2006 17' Casita - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-30-2021, 08:49 AM   #1
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Name: Lee
Trailer: HR Endeavor
California
Posts: 9
Need Help I found a 2006 17' Casita

I don't know a heck of a lot about Casita we have been Motor Homers for a long time and no longer own one, We would like to get back to basic camping and are thinking a pull trailer would be just the thing we are looking for. But like I said I don't know a lot about them. Any advice on what to look for?

It is a 2006 17' Spirit Deluxe Casita for $19,500
Thanks for your time......
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Old 09-30-2021, 09:19 AM   #2
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Condition matters. Might want to check out the for sale part of this forum and the fiberglassrv4sale.com site to get an idea of prices. Good to know in advance what prices are for what you are looking for in terms of amenities or models.

The FGRV market the campers sell very fast. I would say unless a special case or over priced a week or less is typical. Generally not that much supply. First person who looks at a rig for sale that matches their needs and isn't terribly over priced buys it.

Pays to know an assortment of models with floor plans you like and amenities available that you desire so you don't lag making arrangements to see a model that can meet your needs. Research in advance allows you to know that model works for you.

If there is a rally in your area (see the Rally forum for a map and posts on those) the rally will offer an opportunity to check out different models and how people set them up and use them.

Considerations include:
  • Weight capacity of tow vehicle - no point in camper you can't tow. Search this site for Trailer Weights in the Real World.
  • Sleeping accommodations - how many beds, and will they be big enough.
  • Inside height. Tall folks can find this one critical, or not. Same models from different years (in Scamps anyway) have different heights. AC unit projecting down into space is a factor for head clearance.
  • Bathroom - some require them to enjoy camping, others consider them a waste of space.
  • Kitchen facilities. If you cook inside, or desire a large fridge.
  • Propane and electric or all electric. Some FGRV's are all electric. From the factory or due to previous owners not wanting the propane and always camping with shore power.
  • Boondock capabilities. Solar, number of batteries, number or size of propane tanks, water capacity,
  • Common modifications. Some models tend to get redone by owners in common ways. Worth knowing what is possible for models you are considering.
  • Common defects or issues. Just like cars have places they rust or known issues so too can campers. This can be important for knowing what to look for during an inspection.

Casita makes a nice camper. Price and value are something that takes a bit of research. Is somewhat in the eye of the beholder too. Have seen slightly older Scamp 16's for around $13,500 or so. Prices can take a dip late in the camping season.
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Old 09-30-2021, 09:36 AM   #3
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I would add one big advantage of a pull behind camper compared to a motor home is mobility after one sets up camp. Can take the tow vehicle out for errands or activities while leaving the camp set up.

Without having to tow a vehicle behind the motor home.

Also nice to have the camper readily available. Can pull into a rest area and make lunch or stretch out for a nap. Walmart or casino camping is also still an option.
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Old 09-30-2021, 09:46 AM   #4
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Name: Shirley
Trailer: Escape 21, formerly Casita SD
Missouri
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We loved our 2004 Casita SD for 5 years, looked at a few before we bought a gently used one. Things to check-rivets! Look inside where they come through around the caps, check for rust-if so, rivet will need to be replaced. Check the floor for soft spots in the plywood subfloor, and make sure the carpet on the walls is still securely glued on. Check to see if it has a Hepto mod done for the shower-I don’t think it was standard yet in 2006. Open the awning and make sure it is in good shape. Check around the windows for leaks, as the rubber gasket needs to be replaced every 10 years or so (can do it yourself, but we paid $140 to have them all done). See if it is a high lift axle-if so, 15” tires instead of 14”. Also see if any mods have been done to help the frig stay cold in very hot climates-common issue due to how they were vented -sometimes extra baffles and insulation, or another fan will have been added. Casita is very sturdy and easy to tow, and if taken care of will last practically forever.
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Old 09-30-2021, 10:08 AM   #5
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Name: Lee
Trailer: HR Endeavor
California
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Whoa thanks so much for the reply's...... Looking at the pictures I saw it does NOT have the High Lift Axle's from the pictures I do not see any rust (I expanded the photos) and to me it looks like it is in very good shape...... I'll go this weekend and check it out...... Thanks so much for your time......

I will be pulling it with a 2020 F-150 with Max Tow Package so I am sure the truck will more then handle it........
Thanks again Lee........ I will also check the For Sale section on here
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Old 09-30-2021, 12:40 PM   #6
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Trailer: Escape 21, formerly Casita SD
Missouri
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Hoping it works out for you! The place to check rivet nuts for rust would be inside the upper cabinets when you go view-I didn’t make that clear before. Also check for mildew around the water pump area, drivers side rear behind the battery box. Your tow vehicle will be perfect!!
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Old 09-30-2021, 12:47 PM   #7
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Hi, Lee! Your tow vehicle will be perfect but you'll need to get the correct tow bar: our 2021 F-150 with Max Tow is so much higher (because it has extra ground clearance and is a 4x4) than the 2013 we've been using to pull our Escape, we switched to a tow bar with a 5" drop. (You want the trailer to tow at close to level.)

Good luck on your quest!
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Old 09-30-2021, 03:14 PM   #8
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Name: bob
Trailer: 1996 Casita 17 Spirit Deluxe; 1946 Modernistic teardrop
New York
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Used Casitas usually sell quick as wait time on a new one is over a year. This one will probably be gone by the weekend.
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Old 09-30-2021, 03:26 PM   #9
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Name: Lee
Trailer: HR Endeavor
California
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I sent the owner a message (have not heard back yet).... I asked if we could come see it Saturday. We'll see...... I already have a drop receiver that will get us home if it's not enough...... Thanks for the tip on where to look at rivets and mildew around the water pump area......
LeeB
I just hope it's not to small for our large bodies I am 6' 280 and wife 5'2" 160..
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Old 09-30-2021, 05:05 PM   #10
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Name: Ron
Trailer: 2001 Casita 17' SD
IN
Posts: 75
As stated condition, condition condition “ matters more than the year…….
Rust shouldn’t be an issue other than on the frame. The fiberglass components are put together with aluminum rivets, not steel so there is no visible rust on the shell. Only caveat to that is there may be on steelhead cap bolt on the street (drivers) side that holds the upright partition. The “HepVo” plumbing components are used in the bathroom sink (in front closet), the kitchen sink (in the down pipe) and in the shower drain (under the front of trailer). These you do not have to winterize as they hold no water. I don’t believe these were offered until around 2018 in new models as standard.
Check electrics as everything should work, both 12vdc and 120vac. If not it may be a fuse issues or expose a converter problem.

Our 2001 was considerably cheaper but was in so-so condition and we have replaced many items to make it a competent traveler. That being said at the asking price for a 2006 it seems a bit steep. Make sure your 100% happy with it if you purchase it.

Here’s an example what 19k can get you
https://www.recreationalvehiclemarke...121685525.html

https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/200...-17-5017993532

The best source for Casita information https://www.casitaforum.com/invboard/
Good luck.
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Old 09-30-2021, 06:37 PM   #11
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Name: Lee
Trailer: HR Endeavor
California
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I live in Central California and the trailer I found is 3 hours away. The seller has decided to have a open Casita day on Sunday (we can't go on Sunday) she is going to have it plugged in and water hooked up so it shows everything works.... By what I am reading on here it will sell on Sunday. I did leave it open if it doesn't for her to contact me. I'll keep searching and who knows I may find something else..... Thanks so much for all your reply's.................. LeeB
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Old 10-01-2021, 09:49 AM   #12
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Three hours is nothing in the search for a molded fiberglass trailer. The price of this one is on the high side for a 15-year-old unit. If it's in the Bay area, Los Angeles, or coastal southern California, that could account for the higher valuation. Still, at that price I'd expect it to be in top condition both mechanically and cosmetically.

After your motorhome, a Casita will be really small. Lengths are hitch to bumper, so the cabin on a 17' Casita is about 14'x6.5' inside. The main bed in the Spirit is full-sized and transverse, surrounded by walls and cabinets on 3-1/2 sides. You climb in from the aisle, and the person sleeping at the back has to crawl over the front person for a nighttime potty run. The galley has no counter space, and the bathroom is a wet bath.

The Liberty and Independence models allow for roomier and more convenient longways sleeping, but they give up a second dining/seating spot, so you'll have to convert the bed anytime you want to eat or sit inside. Until you pass the 20' mark, other molded trailers share a lot of the same limitations. The Casita is a solid choice and easier to find than other molded options.

Not trying to discourage you- small can be great. It's a paradigm shift from "condo on wheels" to "tent with perks."

Another downsizing option to consider is a Class B. In addition to our Scamp, we have a family hand-me-down Roadtrek. It has a larger bed than most small molded trailers and extra seating up front, but the wet bath is teeny. Fuel mileage in the van is about the same as our crossover plus trailer.

Best wishes in your search!
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Old 10-01-2021, 10:15 AM   #13
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Name: Lee
Trailer: HR Endeavor
California
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Thanks Jon In Az and all who have replied. The more and more we look and searched we are going to try for something in the 20' range something that has a Queen walk around bed auto awning and other amenities that come with it. I know the Casita is (To Die For) LoL...... But being we are very experienced RV'ers I am sure I could handle any problems that might arise...... Thanks again Lee
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Old 10-01-2021, 01:00 PM   #14
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Trailer: Casita
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Yes it will definitely sell.
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Old 10-02-2021, 07:35 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeeB1969 View Post
Thanks Jon In Az and all who have replied. The more and more we look and searched we are going to try for something in the 20' range something that has a Queen walk around bed auto awning and other amenities that come with it. I know the Casita is (To Die For) LoL...... But being we are very experienced RV'ers I am sure I could handle any problems that might arise...... Thanks again Lee
A few things irritated us about the Casita we owned. First, the front corner bathroom eliminates front windows. I like a lot of light, and I did not like no windows in the front portion of the trailer. The second issue was the very small dinette. The third issue was the center aisle was narrow, so my wife and I could not pass each other in the aisle. OK, we are not the smallest in the world, but....

The Escape 19 fits us better. First, the aisle is wider. Secondly, the dinette is larger, theoretically its a 4 person dinette, or in our case, two people with stuff. Third, there are three windows in the front, two that open. Escape 21 would be even better, but it would not fit in our parking area, so it was out.

Best trailer for windows we have owned is our 1977 Trillium 1300. Lots of windows, most that open fully. But it is small for sure!

Walk around queen, your only choice right now is the Bigfoot 25. The other option is the myriad of non-molded FG trailers. The Escape 5.0 TA is also a possible choice (fifth wheel design). Not really walk around, but rear egress.

Molded FG trailers tend to be too narrow for walk around queen beds, and too small in overall length to compete feature for feature with the less durable stick built trailers out there. Purchase of a molded FG trailer involves compromise. In the end, they are not the best choice for everyone.

I kind of like the seller's open house concept. Rather than have people coming in all day long, set the trailer up, everything running, and have an open house. Given the current market, I can see them opening it up for "offers", watch people bid it up! I'm not too crazy about that idea, but it is what is going on in the real estate market here. Set a price, but allow offers for the first several days. Then it sells for more than asking price....Sometimes a lot more. Sucks for buyers, great for sellers.

The pressure to buy immediately can be intense. While we were looking at the Casita we bought (pre-pandemic), seller's phone kept ringing. You would hear half of the call: "Yes, it is still for sale but I have someone looking at it right now. I'll call you back if they don't buy it." 30 seconds later, his phone would ring again, same conversation. This happened at least 6 times while we were looking at the trailer.
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Old 10-02-2021, 08:20 AM   #16
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Yes, a walk-around queen requires a slide or a very wide trailer. That pretty much eliminates molded fiberglass, except the 25’ BIgfoot Bill mentioned. It’s not only the largest molded trailer currently made, but it’s heavy enough to require a 3/4T truck to pull it (a few people tow with an F150 with the 3.5L Ecoboost and max payload options).

I camped next to a former 16’ Scamp owner at the beach a number of years ago. Got to talking because we had our 13’ Scamp. A walk-around queen was the reason they sold the Scamp and bought a non-molded White Water Retro 177*, which they were towing with a Toyota Tacoma. It’s one of the smallest with a walk-around queen (but it is wide). The bed was shorter than an RV queen (74”), but they seemed happy with it.

*Looks like they currently make a couple of mid-sized, single axle models (171 and 179) with walk-around queens, which are a bit longer now.
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Old 10-02-2021, 10:27 AM   #17
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Trailer: 1996 Casita 17 Spirit Deluxe; 1946 Modernistic teardrop
New York
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We looked in a White Water Retro at a rally a couple years ago. My wife liked the walk around rear bed. It also had a large fridge and nice front dinette. As I recall the table could be slid sideways to accommodate people of various sizes. The wall framing may have been aluminum studs.
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Old 10-02-2021, 12:56 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mary and bob View Post
... wall framing may have been aluminum studs.
"All-aluminum cage" according to the website. Didn't know that. Combined with a corrugated aluminum skin, it's a great way to build a conventional framed trailer.
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Old 10-06-2021, 10:51 AM   #19
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We owned a 1999 17'Casita SD, SD stands for Spirit Deluxe. There are different floor plans and the Spirit is the most popular and D means Deluxe that has a bathroom and AC among other items. $19k seem high to me but they hold their value very well. Casita builds around 20 trailers a week so there are not a lot for sale.

We had ours for 13 years and enjoyed it a lot but age took hold of use. A basic F150 is plenty.

Best advice I have is LOOK AROUND, don't rush and find a rally to attend, We've found Casita owners are very happy to show off their trailers.
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Old 10-11-2021, 02:07 PM   #20
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Name: Ruthie
Trailer: Casita
New Mexico
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I have a 2010 Casita SD and travel solo. I know many couples that travel in them but for me I couldn't imagine spending any amount of time inside with any size person. I'm pleasantly surprised with today's market I could sell mine for twice what I paid for it 5 years ago. Best of luck and Casita is a great camper, for sure. So happy with mine.
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