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Old 05-18-2021, 02:03 PM   #1
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Name: Dee
Trailer: In the market
Arizona
Posts: 8
Smile Hi I am new and ISO a new home

Hi!!!!!
I am so happy that there is a group out there that already own beautiful fiberglass travel trailers. I hope to join the family soon if I can catch a used one before it's out the door. I'm in the desert in Page, AZ and looking throughout UT and AZ to see what pops up. It's gonna be a full time home for me and I'm hoping to make it all electric and off road ready. I have a 2020 Tacoma so can tow a max of 6,800lbs.

Happy Camping!
Dee
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Old 05-18-2021, 07:12 PM   #2
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Name: CalCop
Trailer: Casita
California
Posts: 116
Welcome Dee!
Your search for a trailer will take close attention to the for sale sections on these forums.
https://www.fiberglassrv.com/
https://www.casitaforum.com/
The Casita Club - Home for Casita Travel Trailer Owners and Prospective Owners
In your post you didn't mention what brand or size of trailer has caught your interest. You might want to make your selection before going much further in your search.
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Old 05-18-2021, 07:23 PM   #3
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Name: Dee
Trailer: In the market
Arizona
Posts: 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by CalCop View Post
Welcome Dee!
Your search for a trailer will take close attention to the for sale sections on these forums.
https://www.fiberglassrv.com/
https://www.casitaforum.com/
The Casita Club - Home for Casita Travel Trailer Owners and Prospective Owners
In your post you didn't mention what brand or size of trailer has caught your interest. You might want to make your selection before going much further in your search.
Thank you yes. I'm open to brands, but I think 16-17ft is my max inside length. I really like the Casita Freedom floorplan with the captain chairs, but I figure I can switch out dinette seats if there's storage elsewhere.
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Old 05-18-2021, 07:31 PM   #4
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Name: CalCop
Trailer: Casita
California
Posts: 116
I bought a Freedom for the chairs. I sacrificed the storage beneath the spirit seats. But I don't pack much into the trailer.
Trailers are measured from hitch to bumper. In a 17' trailer that means interior is roughly 14'.
In your research, go to the trailer company web site. That way you can see what's available.
In my search I started with a Casita 13' and bought a 17'
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Old 05-18-2021, 07:39 PM   #5
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Name: Dee
Trailer: In the market
Arizona
Posts: 8
Ah, yes I often look at the floorplan and measurements if it's not in the name of the model. Good to know it's from hitch to bumper. I need to see a few in person to get a better perspective of the size and storage for fulltime.
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Old 05-18-2021, 08:06 PM   #6
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Name: CalCop
Trailer: Casita
California
Posts: 116
Casita has a referral program. Call Casita and explain you'd like to view a trailer in your area. They can refer you to an owner willing to show you the model you might be interested in buying.
I'm unsure how the other companies market their trailers
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Old 05-18-2021, 08:26 PM   #7
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Name: Dee
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Arizona
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I did that today through Casita and will contact the name to schedule soon. I'm in the middle of nowhere, so they are 2hrs away.
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Old 05-19-2021, 02:08 AM   #8
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Name: John
Trailer: Escape 21, behind an '02 F250 7.3 diesel tug
Mid Left Coast
Posts: 2,359
Quote:
Originally Posted by DancePartyDee View Post
Thank you yes. I'm open to brands, but I think 16-17ft is my max inside length. I really like the Casita Freedom floorplan with the captain chairs, but I figure I can switch out dinette seats if there's storage elsewhere.
note that Casitas like most FG trailers, the advertised length is outside, bumper to hitch. a 17 foot Casita is about 14 feet inside, and if its a deluxe with the shower and bath, thats in front, and only leaves about 10-11 feet for everything else. my "21 foot" Escape is about 16 feet 9" inside from back window to front window, per my laser measuring thingie.

I could quite comfortably live in the E21 full time solo but I think anything smaller would be just too cramped. the 21 has a 'full xl' real mattress thats front to rear rather than crosswise, and it has sufficient headroom that I'm not bumping my head into the A/C (I'm 6' tall), and a U shaped dinette that doubles as a pretty comfortable lounge, also a lot(!) more storage than a Casita, a fridge big enough for a reasonable amount of food and cold beverages, PLUS a adequate sized real freezer. mine has the optional propane oven under the stove, thats really handy for my style of cooking, warming or toasting breads, making sandwich melts, casseroles, etc. I'm not much into microwaving. when I'm dry camping, its got larger water and grey holding tanks, double golf cart batteries, and I've got the 160 watt roof top solar option, which means I can camp nearly indefinitely without plugin power, just need to pull it somewhere i can fill my water tanks and dump my holding tanks about once a week.

but, a E21 is also significantly more expensive than a Casita, and requires a somewhat more substantial tow vehicle.
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Old 05-19-2021, 06:36 AM   #9
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Name: Jon
Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
Arizona
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People live full-time in trailers as small as 13’, and others couldn’t imagine anything smaller than a 45’ fifth wheel. It has more to do with temperament and expectations than capability.

I like to cook, and the galley in the 17’ Casitas just wouldn’t work for me for full-time living. I’d lean toward a Scamp 16’ side bath model (some even have an oven), or a 17’ Bigfoot, maybe even a 17.5’ for the four season upgrades. The last would be a stretch for the Tacoma. The Scamp side bath is really tiny.

Just throwing out options. A small trailer entails compromises, and the OP will have to decide what compromises make the most sense for her. Casitas are plentiful and could be a good starting point- if you can adapt to the lack of counter space in the galley. The Freedom has a smaller dinette table, which often serves as kitchen prep space.

None are all-electric, and converting any of them to a full off-grid electric set-up will be enormously costly (think solar, lithium, large inverter, DC compressor fridge, induction cooking…). And after all that, practical off-grid heat and hot water still require fossil fuels. You might think in terms of a hybrid set-up. The one appliance that benefits most from conversion to electric is the fridge, thanks to efficient DC compressors.
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Old 05-19-2021, 09:08 AM   #10
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Name: Dee
Trailer: In the market
Arizona
Posts: 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by John in Santa Cruz View Post
note that Casitas like most FG trailers, the advertised length is outside, bumper to hitch. a 17 foot Casita is about 14 feet inside, and if its a deluxe with the shower and bath, thats in front, and only leaves about 10-11 feet for everything else. my "21 foot" Escape is about 16 feet 9" inside from back window to front window, per my laser measuring thingie.

I could quite comfortably live in the E21 full time solo but I think anything smaller would be just too cramped. the 21 has a 'full xl' real mattress thats front to rear rather than crosswise, and it has sufficient headroom that I'm not bumping my head into the A/C (I'm 6' tall), and a U shaped dinette that doubles as a pretty comfortable lounge, also a lot(!) more storage than a Casita, a fridge big enough for a reasonable amount of food and cold beverages, PLUS a adequate sized real freezer. mine has the optional propane oven under the stove, thats really handy for my style of cooking, warming or toasting breads, making sandwich melts, casseroles, etc. I'm not much into microwaving. when I'm dry camping, its got larger water and grey holding tanks, double golf cart batteries, and I've got the 160 watt roof top solar option, which means I can camp nearly indefinitely without plugin power, just need to pull it somewhere i can fill my water tanks and dump my holding tanks about once a week.

but, a E21 is also significantly more expensive than a Casita, and requires a somewhat more substantial tow vehicle.
You may be right about the inside space. That's why I really have to take a look in person. I'm 5'4 and becoming more of a minimalist, so I could swing smaller and my Tacoma is new so that tow capacity wouldn't change anytime soon, ha. I did look into the Escapes, but just their website to get model and floorplan ideas. Thanks John!
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Old 05-19-2021, 09:15 AM   #11
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Name: Dee
Trailer: In the market
Arizona
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Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
People live full-time in trailers as small as 13’, and others couldn’t imagine anything smaller than a 45’ fifth wheel. It has more to do with temperament and expectations than capability.

I like to cook, and the galley in the 17’ Casitas just wouldn’t work for me for full-time living. I’d lean toward a Scamp 16’ side bath model (some even have an oven), or a 17’ Bigfoot, maybe even a 17.5’ for the four season upgrades. The last would be a stretch for the Tacoma. The Scamp side bath is really tiny.

Just throwing out options. A small trailer entails compromises, and the OP will have to decide what compromises make the most sense for her. Casitas are plentiful and could be a good starting point- if you can adapt to the lack of counter space in the galley. The Freedom has a smaller dinette table, which often serves as kitchen prep space.

None are all-electric, and converting any of them to a full off-grid electric set-up will be enormously costly (think solar, lithium, large inverter, DC compressor fridge, induction cooking…). And after all that, practical off-grid heat and hot water still require fossil fuels. You might think in terms of a hybrid set-up. The one appliance that benefits most from conversion to electric is the fridge, thanks to efficient DC compressors.
Four season type insulation is important and eventual electric would be great to work out over time. Kitchen space isn't a big deal cause I don't cook much. I can store some thing in the Tacoma bed also. Again I know I really have to take a look in person. Thanks for the info!
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Old 05-19-2021, 11:28 AM   #12
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Name: John
Trailer: I started with a 2010 Casita Spirit Deluxe.I now have a 2015, Dynamax DX3-37RV Super-C diesel puller
Box Elder, SD (formerly of Long Island, NY)
Posts: 120
Welcome Dee! My first RV was a 2010 17' Casita Spirit Deluxe that I pulled with a 2004 Toyota Sienna minivan I then owned. I picked up my "egg" at the factory in August of 2010 and headed right out to the Burning Man Event in Nevada's Black Rock Desert. I had a GREAT time and returned to Burning Man in 2011 & 2012 (I could not get a ticket after that). I put over 50,000 miles on my "egg" in four years criss-crossing the country as a solo. There is a Casita Solos group; great people! In 2014, I sold my "egg" and graduated to a true Super-C diesel puller motorhome which I've been Full Timing in. While I had my Casita, I met two couples and several singles who "full timed" it in their Casitas. As already mentioned, a call to Casita will get you in touch with a "local" Casita owner who will be happy to show off their "egg". I thing Scamp has a similar program. I'm not sure about other "egg" builders (Oliver, Bigfoot, Escape etc) but, it would certainly be worth a phone call to find out. Before Covid, there were several "type" rallies for "egg" trailers. I think some are beginning to be scheduled again. If you can manage it, attend a rally (or two). You can stay in an on-site camping cabin or, at a local motel and drive to the venue each day. Doing so would be a GREAT way to see LOTS of fiberglass travel trailers and give you the opportunity to talk with owners. If for some reason I ever decided to downsize from my 39' motorhome, I would certainly consider getting another "egg" but, instead of 17' I'd go with a bigger model (say 19' to 25'). "Arizona Eileen" has Witten an EXCELLENT book "The Casita Travel Trailer A to Z Owner's Guide" (link below). Much of the information therein would apply to fiberglass trailers in general. Again, WELCOME!
Regards, John

Love My Casita
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Old 05-19-2021, 12:08 PM   #13
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Name: Dee
Trailer: In the market
Arizona
Posts: 8
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Originally Posted by FlyGuy View Post
Welcome Dee! My first RV was a 2010 17' Casita Spirit Deluxe that I pulled with a 2004 Toyota Sienna minivan I then owned. I picked up my "egg" at the factory in August of 2010 and headed right out to the Burning Man Event in Nevada's Black Rock Desert. I had a GREAT time and returned to Burning Man in 2011 & 2012 (I could not get a ticket after that). I put over 50,000 miles on my "egg" in four years criss-crossing the country as a solo. There is a Casita Solos group; great people! In 2014, I sold my "egg" and graduated to a true Super-C diesel puller motorhome which I've been Full Timing in. While I had my Casita, I met two couples and several singles who "full timed" it in their Casitas. As already mentioned, a call to Casita will get you in touch with a "local" Casita owner who will be happy to show off their "egg". I thing Scamp has a similar program. I'm not sure about other "egg" builders (Oliver, Bigfoot, Escape etc) but, it would certainly be worth a phone call to find out. Before Covid, there were several "type" rallies for "egg" trailers. I think some are beginning to be scheduled again. If you can manage it, attend a rally (or two). You can stay in an on-site camping cabin or, at a local motel and drive to the venue each day. Doing so would be a GREAT way to see LOTS of fiberglass travel trailers and give you the opportunity to talk with owners. If for some reason I ever decided to downsize from my 39' motorhome, I would certainly consider getting another "egg" but, instead of 17' I'd go with a bigger model (say 19' to 25'). "Arizona Eileen" has Witten an EXCELLENT book "The Casita Travel Trailer A to Z Owner's Guide" (link below). Much of the information therein would apply to fiberglass trailers in general. Again, WELCOME!
Regards, John

Love My Casita
Hi John!
I do have viewing tomorrow for the freedom I wanna check out. Yes, scamp and Oliver I believe have similar 'see one in person's programs, which is super helpful.

I don't wanna limit myself with brands too much because of my timing for needing it, but obviously the weight/length and condition would be the most important. Thanks!
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Old 05-19-2021, 01:22 PM   #14
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Name: John
Trailer: I started with a 2010 Casita Spirit Deluxe.I now have a 2015, Dynamax DX3-37RV Super-C diesel puller
Box Elder, SD (formerly of Long Island, NY)
Posts: 120
Dee, be VERY CAREFUL re the weights and HOW you deal with them. It is VERY easy to be overweight on one or more parameters. The RVSEF (as well as Escapees RV Club, FMCA and others) has LOTS of good information re dealing with "the numbers". The numbers are an arcane topic and, it's VERY easy to make a mistake. Mistakes made with RVs tend to be expensive and, sometimes dangerous. The Escapees started a safety program a decade+ ago called RV Boot Camp. Other groups have followed suit. RVBC is a weekend of learning. ALL of the systems found on a modern RV are explained and demystified. They go over ALL the numbers that are critical for an RVer to get right. RVBC is usually held the weekend before Escapade (a MAJOR Escapee rally) It has also been offered at Escapees home base in Livingston, TX. RVBC graduates are SAFER RVers and SMARTER RV buyers. With Covid, lots of RV events have been postponed or canceled.If at all possible, get thee to an RVBC! You can thank me later. Mark Polk runs RVEducation101.com. Mark offers DVD versions of much of what's taught at an RVBC. I remember him have a good DVD on RV weights. Check out www.RVEducation101.com
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Old 05-19-2021, 02:20 PM   #15
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Name: Dee
Trailer: In the market
Arizona
Posts: 8
I do understand there are many different numbers to consider with the weight and towing and that you can screw up your vehicle. I've been researching for a while. I wish I had weekends off or free time and money to join some workshop type of classes, but maybe in the Fall, ha. It's tourist season and I work in that industry at the moment. Thanks!
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Old 05-19-2021, 05:02 PM   #16
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Name: Debra
Trailer: Casita 2019
FL
Posts: 87
Hi Dee,

You have gotten some great advice from some of the very people who helped me get started and are still advising me.

I sold my condo and went full time in my Casita SD, a 17 footer. As a solo, I was fine with the size. I stored a lot in my Jeep Grand Cherkee but could do more to pare down cargo and optimize storage.

I spend a lot of time outdoors of course and with all the windows in the Casita did not feel cramped. Before living in it, I did find traveling with another person acramped. Cooking has not been an issue for me.

I leave my bed up all the time and with double foam mattresses find it the most comfortable bed I have ever had.

I love the Casita although I have had a few problems.

I lived full time in it for 3 months but due to the need for surgery am now staying with family but once this is over cannot wait to get back into my Casita.

Good luck with your search!
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Old 05-19-2021, 09:53 PM   #17
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Name: John
Trailer: I started with a 2010 Casita Spirit Deluxe.I now have a 2015, Dynamax DX3-37RV Super-C diesel puller
Box Elder, SD (formerly of Long Island, NY)
Posts: 120
Hey Debbie in Florida, John here (FlyGuy). I glad to hear you got your condo sorted out. I wish you good luck re: your arm (and upcoming surgery). I'm still in TN and expect to be here at least a few more months (damn you Covid!). I don't really think that "things" will return to "normal" this year. I also DON'T have much hope for 2022. Sounds like you're in good spirits though. Thank God for small victories! Keep on keeping' on. Regards, John
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Old 05-20-2021, 06:17 AM   #18
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Name: Vicki
Trailer: Casita 16' Freedom Deluxe
Missouri
Posts: 63
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Originally Posted by DancePartyDee View Post
Hi!!!!!
I am so happy that there is a group out there that already own beautiful fiberglass travel trailers. I hope to join the family soon if I can catch a used one before it's out the door. I'm in the desert in Page, AZ and looking throughout UT and AZ to see what pops up. It's gonna be a full time home for me and I'm hoping to make it all electric and off road ready. I have a 2020 Tacoma so can tow a max of 6,800lbs.

Happy Camping!
Dee
I have a camper shell on my pickup. It keeps my stuff in the truck dry and locked up for security. This allows me to keep my camper neat and ready for use immediately. No need to move the camping stuff out before you can use the kitchen or bed in the camper. Wouldn't want an open bed pickup, or a tonneau cover.
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Old 05-20-2021, 08:03 PM   #19
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Name: Bing
Trailer: Sunland Express
Minnesota
Posts: 59
That's what I ike about fivers, no hitch to "include" in the length. My 30' is 30' !
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Old 05-20-2021, 08:29 PM   #20
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Name: John
Trailer: Escape 21, behind an '02 F250 7.3 diesel tug
Mid Left Coast
Posts: 2,359
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Originally Posted by DancePartyDee View Post
Four season type insulation is important and eventual electric would be great to work out over time. Kitchen space isn't a big deal cause I don't cook much. I can store some thing in the Tacoma bed also. Again I know I really have to take a look in person. Thanks for the info!
um, Casitas and Scamps have very minimal insulation, in cold weather, you will be running the propane furnace a LOT

the Escapes have optional '3 season' insulation, almost good enough for really cold, but again, you'll be running quite a bit of propane heat on a sub-freezing night.

the Oliver is, IMHO, the only true 4-season fiberglass trailer, with completely enclosed water tanks and plumbing, double wall construction, all this makes them relatively heavy for their size, and also makes the interior narrower than the exterior. the whole inside of a Oliver is shiny white fiberglass, its kinda like being on a set of 2001: A Space Odyssey. Oliver's are *VERY* expensive.

re towing, if your Tacoma has the factory hitch, its probably rated to tow up to 6500 lbs... I had a 2008 Tacoma 4x4 Access Cab TRD. It successfully and safely towed our 'new' (used) Escape 21 footer home from Dallas TX area to coastal central california, with a stop in Reno, mid winter. I had no issues with pulling the weight of the Escape, it handled nicely. We got rid of the Tacoma, because A] the gas mileage was awful and with a 18 gallon tank meant we only got 150 miles before looking for gas.... and B] the payload was not sufficient for our purposes, my '08 access cab had a 1200 lb total payload. wife and I are a little too close to 500 lbs between us, the fiberglass shell on the back of the truck is 150 lbs, the hitch weight for a 4500 lb Escape 21 is about 500 lbs, and that just doesn't leave much left over for the tables and chairs and awnings and BBQ and coolers we like to bring to music festivals and such. A 4-door Tacoma ("Crew Cab") is even worse, in 08, those had a 1000 lb payload. a non-4x4 tacoma has much lower tow rating, unless its the 'Prerunner' model (which i think was discontinued some time ago although there may be an equivalent?).

now, that same Tacoma had pulled our Casita all over the West without a problem... I did put airbags on it to level it with a heavy load, and I had LT load range 'D' all terrain tires on it, which were overkill but gave us some margins.


Taco pulling Casita, June 2016
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