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Old 11-22-2021, 11:30 AM   #1
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Name: Laura
Trailer: In the market
Oregon
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Dipping in

Hi, I'm new to the RV scene and looking for a trailer to begin. I had my eye on the Scamps, 13 or 16, but wondered what other people's favorites were and why?

Any thoughts you'd like to share?

As for me, I will most often be solo, like to surf in Oregon, so the ocean and rain will often be involved, and I might do some campground hosting. Otherwise, needs not complicated, but must have heat and a good bed. I am mechanically aware, but don't want to have a lot of maintenance to do to get started.

Don't want anything more than 3,500lbs fully loaded.

Any suggestions?

Nice to meet you,
Laura
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Old 11-22-2021, 11:38 AM   #2
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Name: bob
Trailer: 1996 Casita 17 Spirit Deluxe; 1946 Modernistic teardrop
New York
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Depends on your tow vehicle rating, but Scamp would be a good choice as they are still in production. We had a 13 foot Uhaul fiberglass camper for several years, but they are long out of production, have a lot of unique to them only parts, and many issues that most people aren't aware of until after they buy one and start doing some research. We now have a Casita 17, but they are fairly tongue heavy.
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Old 11-22-2021, 11:50 AM   #3
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Name: Laura
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Oregon
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Thanks for the reply. I can tow up to 5,000lb on my 2006 Jeep Liberty with tow package and trans cooler, but want to go a bit lighter.
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Old 11-22-2021, 07:05 PM   #4
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Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
Arizona
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With a 5000# tow rating and a 3500# target weight you can actually have up to a 17' molded trailer. Lots of choices, new and used. Realize that all lengths are tongue-to-bumper, so the actual cabin will be around 3' less.

My personal favorite layout for long-term use by one person is Scamp's 16' side bath layout (#4). The larger galley and available larger fridge would be nice for longer trips, and a small wet bath is handy when campground bathrooms are unavailable, dirty, or inconvenient. It also allows you to have a separate sleeping space and daytime seating/dining space (or two separate beds at opposite ends if you occasionally bring a friend). It runs around 2500-2600# optioned and loaded for travel.

If you prefer smaller, of course there is the 13' Scamp (and others like it, though Scamp is the most common). It's available with or without a wet bath. Skipping the bath greatly simplifies the plumbing and makes it feel roomier, but you are left with a porta-potty as your back-up. It runs around 1600-1700# without the bath and 1800-1900# with a wet bath.

17'ers from Casita or Escape could also fit the bill, and will still be within your 3500# target. There’s good real-world weight information of different makes and models in this spreadsheet:
http://lakeshoreimages.com/spreadsheets/Weight.xlsx

Best wishes finding the one that's right for you!
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Old 11-22-2021, 08:58 PM   #5
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Name: Laura
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Thank you Jon, that is helpful practical information! I tend to favor the scamp 16 foot with side bath just from looking at the printed layouts. But simple is always so attractive.
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Old 11-22-2021, 09:10 PM   #6
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Scamp actual weight

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laura in Oregon View Post
Thank you Jon, that is helpful practical information! I tend to favor the scamp 16 foot with side bath just from looking at the printed layouts. But simple is always so attractive.
Never trust the published weight of an RV. Take it to a Scale. Here is my 2017 FRONT BATH as built. Well under your 3,500 lbs. The insert is the published shipping weight.
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Old 11-23-2021, 07:12 AM   #7
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True, and sellers often provide unrealistic estimates because they’ve never been to a scale but may have seen published dry weights, which don’t include options, modifications, consumables, and gear. That 1750# in the inset is the base dry weight of the lightest 16 model (layout 3) before options, so no fridge, no furnace, no A/C, no toilet, no shower, no water heater, no battery, no LP tank- they’re all options on a Scamp.

Since you can’t weigh trailers you see in ads nor trust sellers’ claims, the “Trailer Weights in the Real World” spreadsheet linked in post #4 is your best bet in the research and shopping phase.

Once you get your trailer, taking it to a scale is a great first step in informed ownership. Even better, weigh it loaded as you head out on your first trip. And don’t forget to e-mail Jon Vermilye, the keeper of the spreadsheet, with your fully loaded weight data (address is in the spreadsheet). Accurate information helps everyone!
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Old 11-23-2021, 07:18 AM   #8
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Trailer: 2008 Casita 17 ft Spirit Deluxe
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Originally Posted by AC0GV View Post
Never trust the published weight of an RV. Take it to a Scale.
True, but those manufacturer's published weights don't take into account all the stuff you add after you buy the trailer. Although the sticker might give you one conservative weight, it is based on a stock trailer with empty propane tanks, empty water and waste tanks, no clothes, cooking and kitchen supplies, food, beverages, personal items, additional trailering equipment, etc., which will definitely "up the ante" on your trailer's real world weight going down the road.

Also another factor often overlooked regarding your tow vehicle's towing capacity, is many people fail to add the weight of gear, equipment, supplies and passengers, all of which will detract from your total towing capacity as well. It's very easy to wind up "overloaded" without even realizing it.
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Old 11-23-2021, 07:21 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laura in Oregon View Post
I tend to favor the scamp 16 foot with side bath just from looking at the printed layouts. But simple is always so attractive.
I believe you can still order any of the 16’ models without the full toilet/shower/water heater plumbing package. The bathroom becomes a dry privacy closet in which you can park a porta-potty or use for storage. It will then have the same simple cold water plumbing set-up as the 13’ no-bath model.

That said, if you’re shopping used, most 16’ers are built with the full bath package. While there is a learning curve for RV plumbing, it’s really not all that complicated. You may be glad you have it in the long run. Some camp hosting positions may require a fully self-contained RV.
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Old 11-23-2021, 07:32 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Casita Greg View Post
Also another factor often overlooked regarding your tow vehicle's towing capacity, is many people fail to add the weight of gear, equipment, supplies and passengers, all of which will detract from your total towing capacity as well. It's very easy to wind up "overloaded" without even realizing it.
Excellent point. That’s probably why the OP has sensibly set the target trailer weight well below the rated towing capacity.
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Old 11-23-2021, 11:01 AM   #11
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Same unit with mods...

Quote:
Originally Posted by AC0GV View Post
Never trust the published weight of an RV. Take it to a Scale. Here is my 2017 FRONT BATH as built. Well under your 3,500 lbs. The insert is the published shipping weight.
... and loaded for the road. I travel with 3 hobbies, full fresh tanks and it has a few modifications. It got new wheels and a lift kit AFTER this weight was done.
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Old 11-24-2021, 11:43 AM   #12
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Trailer: LiL Hauley
Syracuse, NY
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Take a look at Snoozy II and LiL Snoozy. They are all electric but can have propane added. The have a wet bath with cassette toilet, queen bed, lots of storage. The door is also in the back so you might be able to store your surf boards inside the trailer while towing. They cost more then the scamps and casitas but they are also all fiberglass, (even the floor) and they come with a galvanized trailer. Very good quality overall.
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Old 11-27-2021, 11:20 AM   #13
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I would first check the Escape 17b and then the Casita 17.

I have owned 2 of the Casita 17s and they were very good.
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Old 11-27-2021, 11:36 AM   #14
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Trailer: 2015 Escape 17A
California
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Laura,
-Regarding weights: An Example: We have an Escape 17A (no bath, porta-potty instead), with a dry weight of about 2000 lbs. With propane and fresh water tanks full, and our gear, food, etc. we are typically at 2600 lbs.

(Edit: the Escape 17B has a wet bath, and weighs 250-300 lbs. more than the 17A. We picked the 17A, because it fit our camping style, and gave us a full-time queen bed in the front, with a 4 person dinette in the back (that converts to a bed as well).


-Regarding brands, we went to a FG (fiberglass) trailer rally, saw several brands, styles, and sizes, and also got a look inside, as owners are frequently amenable to showing off their rig. We also got to view an Escape, after getting contact info of a nearby owner, from the mfr.


-Here's an upcoming rally that you might want to make a day trip to:
https://www.casitaforum.com/invboard...gon-gathering/



Edit #2: by the way, there is great surfing in our area, the Ventura County, CA coast, When you get your rig, try it out!!)
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Old 11-27-2021, 12:03 PM   #15
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Name: Don
Trailer: Currently shopping
Washington
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If you can afford a new or newer trailer then the price is a good indicator of the quality. However, if you can't afford that there are a number of things to watch for in a used trailer. Our CT-13 is in general a good model to look for. They have dual walls of fiberglass so they have inherent insulation to deal with both temperature and noise and the top doesn't sag like single wall trailers do over time. And like everything else U-haul does they are over built. A couple of problem with them are that like all torsion axle trailers the axle likely needs to be changed at around 20 years. The upside of this is that you can then go with common wheels and other suspension components. Another issue is that the bolts that hold the body to the chassis corrode. Replacing these is easy but at least take this into consideration.

Scamps are only single wall so the top can begin to sag over the years as the wood interior degrades. Plus Scamps seem to have a weaker frame than the better built brands and they can crack which is a serious issue. But the lightness and price is usually better.
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Old 11-27-2021, 12:05 PM   #16
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Trailer: Casita 17 SD
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Starting out

Lots of good suggestions here. Whatever you decide in a fiberglass trailer changing your mind later won't cost too much as they do not depreciate like stick and staples trailers. In fact used ones just don't depreciate.


Your choice should take in where you will be camping and what facilities are needed to support you for the number of days away. Do consider the 'Lil Snoozy as well, they have some nice features like the cassette toilet which you do not have to find a dump station for, just a bathroom toilet that flushes. Good luck.
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Old 11-27-2021, 12:07 PM   #17
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Laura, we live in Vancouver so if you would like to look at a CT13 that might work for you.
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Old 11-27-2021, 12:12 PM   #18
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Name: Diana
Trailer: Casita
Illinois
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The Scamp is more popular in the North and Casita in the South because they are made in Minnesota and Texas. We searched for a used Scamp all summer 2020 because the wait time was so long. We finally gave up on the Scamp because they were gone almost as soon as they were listed. (We live in the North) So when we found a Casita Freedom Deluxe, 17’, in September six hours away we grabbed it. It’s a 2005 and we have been very happy with it. It’s very well made, handles well behind our Toyota, and provides the comforts of home while still being outdoors at a campsite. We’ve done a few remodels to it: 2 bench seats that turn into a single bed and shelves for the closet.) When we sell it the new owner will have a choice between bench seats and swivel seats as the Freedom model is the only one with swivel seats. Newer models have some nice additions like cabinets in the bathroom but we’ve managed to work around that. Otherwise, the 2005 looks very much like the newer models.
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Old 11-27-2021, 01:53 PM   #19
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Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Choosethisday View Post
…Scamps are only single wall so the top can begin to sag over the years as the wood interior degrades. Plus Scamps seem to have a weaker frame than the better built brands and they can crack which is a serious issue. But the lightness and price is usually better.
Most Scamps have a modular fiberglass interior, and it provides adequate support to prevent sagging. I have heard a few reports of some slight sagging on units with roof A/C, with the only harm being a little water pooling in the flatter sections of the roof. Deluxe models have a wood interior, which has also proved attractive and durable.

If a previous owner has removed some of the interior components, then yes, loss of interior support can cause sagging and occasionally complete failure under a heavy snow load. The advantage of the modular interior is individual components can be easily removed to facilitate repairs or modifications.

I personally do not see any significant advantage to the double hull. Some like the smooth, shiny, white walls- easier to wipe clean in a rental unit- but I prefer the softer touch of the marine headliner in the Scamp, especially in cold weather.

Newer Scamp have a more robust frame than vintage units. No sure what year that happened, but I think they changed the coupler from 1-7/8” to 2” at the same time.
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