New, pondering options for road trip - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-22-2015, 06:20 PM   #21
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Yes, with the 2" hitch receiver.
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Old 08-23-2015, 12:20 AM   #22
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Where to stay cheap in cities (or at least the 'burbs)

You can stay free at many Wal-Mart parking lots (ask the manager) and at Camping World(s). Also, many of the larger casinos. At least here in Washington State. Of course, most of it is "dry" camping. But the price is right!

My dog and I have been to Yellowstone many times in our 13' Compact Junior, and no way would I ever want to be in a tent trailer in grizzly country.
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Old 08-23-2015, 12:24 AM   #23
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Roomy sleeping

By the way, one advantage of my 1970's rear-door trailer is that you can make the entire front of it into one large 80" long bed wide enough (if you squeeze) for 2 adults & 2 little kids. And no one has to climb over another to get out!
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Old 08-23-2015, 02:26 AM   #24
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I would go the fiberglass route. It can get wet for weeks on end, especially if you decide to hit Alaska / Canada in late July or August (our rainy season). Tents need time to dry out, and are miserable if packed and unpacked wet several days in a row. If you are sincere about possibly offloading a trailer in Alaska, I recommend posting on the Anchorage Craigslist, Scamps and other small towables are very popular up here. With a little effort you could turn a small profit on a used one in decent condition.
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Old 08-23-2015, 05:10 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CarrieR View Post
Pop-ups are so readily available that I fear we couldn't get rid of it when we need to.
Hi Carrie. Years ago we bought a good 2 year old Coleman pop up and used it for 5 years. We took it all over North America.

We took care of it and after 5 years we sold it in hours for the price we paid for it.

They are easy to mount bikes etc on the roof.


Quote:
Originally Posted by CarrieR View Post
I do have the factory tow package- my owners manual says maximum trailer weight is 4500 lbs. I do want to stay well under that.
Your Ford Flex is a very capable, proven tow vehicle. There are some interesting reviews of some that are towing some good sized travel trailers and they work well. If I had the size of family and a dog that you have I would be looking for a larger egg. Your Flex can easily handle it provided you get the connection (hitch) set up right.
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Old 08-23-2015, 06:09 PM   #26
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New, pondering options for road trip

Quote:
Originally Posted by CarrieR View Post
I can park something at my brother's house for at least a few months. Maybe I can just keep my eye out on the used market next spring, and let fate decide whether we tent, pop-up, or trailer.

Do you pop-ups weigh less than fiberglass? Can you put bikes on top?

I do think, as much as I love the dog, that he will stay home with family. Too many limitations.

Your plan sounds very sensible.

As to weights, I think it is fairly safe to say the smallest pop-ups are lighter than the smallest eggs, though not by as much as you might think. The lift mechanism and beds negate some of the advantage of canvas walls. Their lower profile will make them an easier tow, other things equal. Beyond that, though, both types can get quite heavy as size and amenities grow.

I'm not sure I agree with Bob that pop-ups are easier to maintain than fiberglass eggs. I have owned both, and I'd give the edge to fiberglass, assuming they are similarly equipped in terms of appliances, plumbing, etc. I like to keep thing simple, in any case. We were actually looking for a small pop-up when we stumbled across the Scamp. It is a bit tighter on space, but much more solid-feeling in wind and rain, and our goal is to spend as much time as possible outside the trailer, not inside!

My family of six camped all over the continental U.S. and eastern Canada in the 60's and 70's, first in a tent and then in a pop-up. Never Alaska, though. My best memories, ironically, were some of the hard times: packing up the tent in the middle of the night during a tropical storm in Louisiana and moving to a motel, Dad spraining his ankle while fishing with Grandpa at Yellowstone, camping on the Colorado River in 115-degree weather without AC, wheel bearings freezing on our station wagon and riding in a tow truck in Iowa,... These are the times when you bond as a family.

In the end, it's not about the equipment, it's about the journey!
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Old 08-23-2015, 07:04 PM   #27
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The Tent Trailer shown in Post #6 weighs an honest 720 lbs ready to go but yes, more elaborate tent trailers can get very heavy. The pop-up supports on that one weigh less than 10 lbs each, not a whole lot.
I was referring to smaller Tent trailers being easier to maintain. Simpler water, electric and drain systems. Yes, you have to be a bit more careful with long term maintenance, but day-to-day is easy-peasy. And no windows to leak...LOL


As the family is still considering tenting, I think that a tent trailer is an easy step up off the ground. And OMG, do they have a lot more room inside, Two full beds, a full time dinette and a dance floor.... all in a less than 8' box



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Old 08-24-2015, 07:32 AM   #28
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When I was looking at tent trailers (8' box, same as the Palomino) most of the good condition newer ones I found were in the 1100-1200 pound dry weight range. Coleman/Fleetwood Taos was the most common, and it weighs in at 1180 pounds. That's with a cooktop, sink, and small 3-way fridge, nothing else. Didn't find anything lighter or more basic that wasn't a project. Like fiberglass eggs, small ones in good condition seemed to sell quickly.
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Old 08-24-2015, 08:47 AM   #29
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That one's old enough that it doesn't have any of the amenities found in later units such as a refrigerator, water heater, furnace etc. It also doesn't have a cable lift system that adds substantial weight as there is a lot more heavy framework and winches etc required. The Black one in my Photobucket is a Starcraft and it had all that stuff. Even not having brakes knocks of a few more lbs. This one is, basically, a tent with a stove, a sink and a table.


I saw that this Palomino had been sitting in the same place in a nearby yard for several years (Google Earth location vs current location) so I sent the owner a note in the mail and she was happy to get it off her hands, for about $350 as I recall. It had only a very few water damage issues and the fabric was perfect.


Which points out a good way to find one, check the neighbors driveways, this is the time they will want to sell, winters is on it's way/



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Old 08-28-2015, 10:22 AM   #30
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Do not assume that all pop-up camping trailers are light. Keep an open mind when shopping for travel trailers. Many non-fiberglass travel trailers are ultra-light weight. As an example the Trail-Lite series by R-Vision (a division of Manaco trailers and motor homes) that I currently own is 26ft long and has every conceivable option and tips the scales at 3,300 Lbs. it is one of many quality built travel trailer brands out there on the used market. I found mine last year in as-new condition from a private seller on Craigslist for the amazing price of $5,000 complete with a weight distribution/sway control hitch system.
Shop around and you will discover plenty of bargains!

I did look into renting a class C motor home about two years ago and the cost for a few weeks exceeded what the purchase price of a used travel trailer would set me back.

Good Luck and Happy Camping!
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Old 08-30-2015, 12:40 PM   #31
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With so much rain and dampness, I would opt for the fiberglass trailer which you would have no trouble selling in Alaska, but then you'd be stuck in motels, etc on the return trip.
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Old 08-30-2015, 12:50 PM   #32
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We have made 3 trips to Alaska. On the first one, we had a 16 foot Scamp after we were ready to head home, we listed it on Craigs List and sold it for about what we had paid. We then bought a 19 footer and have been back 2 times with it.
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Old 08-31-2015, 10:15 AM   #33
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Since parking is an issue, would parking it outside of the city in secure lot storage be an option? I paid $35/mo to store a 12ft trailer over the winter in a fenced and secured yard in the 'burbs.
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Old 08-31-2015, 10:39 AM   #34
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Parking in a Storage Yard isn't always that good a bet. A number of Trailer thefts and pilferages have been reported and my own Mustang convertible was stolen out of a locked and secure garage unit that had full locked gates and limited access. All a perp has to do is pay a months rent and they have full run of most "Secure" yards and have lots of time to plan any evil doings.


Gotta say, from my own experiences, the employees of many of the storage yards aren't always top drawer (what ever that means). In the case of my Mustang, it was a definite inside job.



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Old 08-31-2015, 07:43 PM   #35
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I've had good luck so far with the lots, some bad luck on my own property, and the worst on street parking. Bad luck and villainy are hard to predict... My point is, there are options beyond relying on the good graces and limited resources of friends and family.
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Old 08-31-2015, 09:15 PM   #36
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Traveling that distance, with a pop up??
We've traveled quite a bit and will be doing a lot more this winter. One of things I do is drive into the night. When I'm ready for some sleep I seek out in this order, a rest area, truck stop, WalMart. Stop go crawl into the trailer bed and sleep for few hours.

I couldn't do that with a popup. The moment you put the popup out you're "Camping". All these places don't allow camping. But they do allow sleeping without camping. With a hard sided RV that I can simply get into bed without any changes to the outside I'm NOT camping. Yes it appears like a small difference, but I don't make the rules, but all have to live by them.
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Old 09-01-2015, 06:08 AM   #37
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While I don't advocate tent trailers as being ideal for overnight stops, Wal-Mart does not have any "rules" about not opening pop-ups, any more than to not use slide-outs in monster motorhomes, when overnighting in their parking lots. I have seen numerous examples of pop-ups/tent trailers in Wal-Marts, rest areas, casinos and even at Cracker Barrels, when overnight RV parking was allowed.


When I lifted the top on my Sunrader Adventure motorhome or on my Hunter Compact-II, it was no secret that I am using the RV, but I have never, in at least 100 nights in many of the above named places, ever been asked to leave.


It's usually only when you start setting stuff outside, lawn chair's BBQ's etc., that the Camping vs. Overnight parking line is seen as being crossed.


Individual opinions and attitudes may vary, but I have yet to see any "Rules" prohibiting the use of tent trailers where overnight RV parking was allowed.
However, based on local policy, some properties may differ and, just like asking before overnighting at a Wal-Mart, it's always a good idea, if possible, to ask first.



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Old 09-01-2015, 06:52 AM   #38
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Staying in a pop up overnight in a Walmart lot is not something I would do.

In fact staying in a Walmart lot with anything overnight is something we have never done. Something about the missing "nature ambiance".
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Old 09-02-2015, 08:19 PM   #39
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I think we're going to keep our eye out for a 13' Scamp (or similar). I think it would suit our needs and be so fun. I just hope we can time it right and find one that we want at the time we need it!

We are not opposed to buying new and reselling, but do you think we'd lose more money that way? I'm getting the impression if we go used we can probably sell it for what we pay for it.
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Old 09-02-2015, 08:33 PM   #40
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Going used can often result in an excellent resale return, but don't expect to open Craigslist one Saturday morning and buy one on that same day, ready to go.


You are in an area where FGRV's are a bit scarce, and most are stored for the winter starting in November and put back up for sale in April. Best investment time to buy is now, to sell is in May-July.



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