Newly retired shopper - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-19-2020, 08:03 AM   #1
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Name: Patrick
Trailer: Shopping
Florida
Posts: 15
Newly retired shopper

Hi All,
We recently retired and now shopping for a trailer for our summer travels. We moved to the SW Gulf Coast of Florida and plan to travel the cooler states in the summers to see all the beautiful places our country has to offer.


Have been shopping for years and always thought the fiberglass trailers were something that would work well for us. We are planning on doing shorter stays and covering more miles for the next few years as we work on the " I always wanted to go see X bucket list". This is why I am leaning towards the fiberglass models as they are for the most part narrower for easier travel, more durable for lots of miles, and less maintenance overall as compared to a stick built types.


We are looking at 16 foot and up sized boxes or 19 foot overall sizes approximately. Would love to get a used Oliver, as I don't think I can consider a new ones price however not many around. The Escapes are high on our list as well as Bigfoot and some of the others. Going to seek one on the lighter end of the spectrum unless it is a deal I can't pass up. We have looked at a Casita and unless we found a really good deal for a starter trailer we feel like they are just a little small for us.



We have a 2017 Nissan Titan Gas model that will easily tow anything we would pick.


Thanks to everyone in advance that participates on the forums as I have found a good forum to be the best place to find information no matter what the subject.
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Old 01-19-2020, 08:21 AM   #2
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Name: Kevin
Trailer: 28' Bigfoot Silver Cloud
Woodstock, IL
Posts: 1,251
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Welcome and best of luck in your search. We started with a 13' Burro, moved to a 16' UHaul VT, and now have a 28' Bigfoot Silver Cloud as we also prepare for lots of travel around the country in retirement. The extra space of the larger fiberglass trailer is nice and the Bigfoot models are great!

Have fun!

Kevin
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Old 01-19-2020, 08:35 AM   #3
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Name: Patrick
Trailer: Shopping
Florida
Posts: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin A View Post
Welcome and best of luck in your search. We started with a 13' Burro, moved to a 16' UHaul VT, and now have a 28' Bigfoot Silver Cloud as we also prepare for lots of travel around the country in retirement. The extra space of the larger fiberglass trailer is nice and the Bigfoot models are great!

Have fun!

Kevin

Made me lookup the Silver Cloud, that is a rare one. Thanks for the welcome.
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Old 01-19-2020, 08:49 AM   #4
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Name: bill
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19; 1977 Trillium 1300
The Mountains of North Carolina
Posts: 2,604
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"This is why I am leaning towards the fiberglass models as they are for the most part narrower for easier travel" Just be aware that Bigfoot models are wider than the other brands mentioned. Its one thing that makes them more spacious!

I like the fact that my Escape 19 is almost identical in width to my F150. So maintaining lane position is a breeze, fitting in tighter spots is easier. If the truck fits (width wise) then the trailer fits. In my case, I have extended mirrors on my truck that are wider than the trailer. Decades ago we had a traditional RV, much wider. Towing was a little more work, still not bad.

It has been our experience if you are traveling to one location and staying put, then a bigger trailer is much better. In our case, we tend to keep moving, may spend several nights in one of our favorite spots, but otherwise, we are moving. In that case, lots of advantages to a smaller trailer: can fit in almost any campsite, easier to maneuver, etc. You had to see our friends trying to turn around their 43 foot motorhome (8 1/2 feet wide) with a pickup truck being towed behind it. Major undertaking.

But once they were set up, wow, their rig was comfortable. They admit that driving a large and MUCH wider rig is stressful going down the road. So there is no perfect solution.

My advice is to look at floorplan carefully. You will appreciate a place to sit that is separate from the bed as well as a bathroom. Traveling solo, I am fine with my little Trillium. But on family trips, forget it. The Escape 19 works better.

Another factor is where do you plan to store the trailer when you are not using it. I like having it stored at our home, under a carport. Many neighborhoods have HOA that forbid trailer parking (and carports too).

Used versus new: On late model molded FG trailers (say less than 10 years old), you will not see the massive drop in pricing that you do with traditional trailers or tow vehicles. A 5 year old Oliver that has been well maintained is going to be close in price to a brand new one. Often, the savings is in time (you don't have to wait for a factory backlog), options (options sometimes are thrown in with the deal), and shipping versus the cost from a far away factory. We picked up our Escape about 100 miles from home. Going to the factory to pick up would have been 3000 miles.....

But compared to base price, not much savings.
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Old 01-19-2020, 11:18 AM   #5
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Name: Patrick
Trailer: Shopping
Florida
Posts: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by thrifty bill View Post
".

Got to see a 2015 19 Escape just the other day. My impression was very nice. Bigfoot is not first choice due to width as you say, but probably wouldn't pass on a great deal on one.


I would wait to find a used model Escape but might end up missing a year of my travel life doing so unless I buy a Casita or something to get me started.


Thanks for the comments.
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Old 01-19-2020, 11:18 AM   #6
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Name: Steve
Trailer: Currently Shopping
NW Wisconsin
Posts: 3,816
How much stuff do you bring with you when camping , storage space makes a big difference .
When we moved from a 17 ft Casita to a 21 ft FG trailer we just transferred all our stuff from one trailer to the other . With our 17 ft stuff was always buried in behind other stuff requiring us to unload the whole cabinet to get to what we needed . Now with our 21 everything has its place and is easily accessible.
This made my wife happy and camping much more enjoyable with far less cussing .
Many including ourselves underestimated the size trailer they really need and then end up upsizing . We’ve done it twice !!
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Old 01-19-2020, 11:44 AM   #7
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Name: Patrick
Trailer: Shopping
Florida
Posts: 15
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Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
How much stuff do you bring with you when camping , storage space makes a big difference .
When we moved from a 17 ft Casita to a 21 ft FG trailer we just transferred all our stuff from one trailer to the other . With our 17 ft stuff was always buried in behind other stuff requiring us to unload the whole cabinet to get to what we needed . Now with our 21 everything has its place and is easily accessible.
This made my wife happy and camping much more enjoyable with far less cussing .
Many including ourselves underestimated the size trailer they really need and then end up upsizing . We’ve done it twice !!

I think the 21 Escape would be a great fit. Finding one for sale at less than new price is an issue. Otherwise it looks like they are starting to keep more inventory so getting one from the factory is getting an easier thing to do.
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Old 01-19-2020, 12:56 PM   #8
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Name: bill
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19; 1977 Trillium 1300
The Mountains of North Carolina
Posts: 2,604
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Just be sure to add shipping and options to the new one. Ours had close to $6,000 in options, most we wanted. Then you have the shipping cost which can be very substantial as well,

All that being said, new is nice! Yes tying it in with a trip out West is great. Be sure to get the front storage box and surface power connection too.
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Old 01-19-2020, 01:01 PM   #9
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Name: Patrick
Trailer: Shopping
Florida
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Originally Posted by thrifty bill View Post
Just be sure to add shipping and options to the new one. Ours had close to $6,000 in options, most we wanted. Then you have the shipping cost which can be very substantial as well,

All that being said, new is nice!

I am not so picky, I think one of the inventory with solar would fit me needs. Probably have to make the trip myself and check off some of the bucket list on the way back so wouldn't really count the gas to go an extra cost.
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Old 01-19-2020, 02:31 PM   #10
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Name: Steve
Trailer: Currently Shopping
NW Wisconsin
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[QUOTE=PatrickTXFL;765785]I am not so picky, I think one of the inventory with solar would fit me needs. Probably have to make the trip myself and check off some of the bucket list on the way back so wouldn't really count the gas to go an extra cost.[/QUOTE

Escape has a quite extensive list of published and not published options
Living in Florida be aware that Air conditioning is an option on Escapes and dual 6 volt batteries are an option with solar
Allotting $6000 for options on a 21 ft Escape would be on the conservative side in my estimation .
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Old 01-19-2020, 03:17 PM   #11
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Name: Patrick
Trailer: Shopping
Florida
Posts: 15
I understand what your saying from base price. I am just looking a complete unit's on the lots so to speak
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Old 01-19-2020, 04:02 PM   #12
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Name: Jann
Trailer: Casita
Colorado
Posts: 774
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Originally Posted by PatrickTXFL View Post
Got to see a 2015 19 Escape just the other day. My impression was very nice. Bigfoot is not first choice due to width as you say, but probably wouldn't pass on a great deal on one.


I would wait to find a used model Escape but might end up missing a year of my travel life doing so unless I buy a Casita or something to get me started.


Thanks for the comments.
Casita's are well built and their resale value is very good. A nice one doesn't stay on the market very long. If you want to get started get one then find what you want then sell the current one. We did that and sold our first old Casita in one day for what we had in it and we'd used it 2 years. Bought our 2007 Casita from the factory and still have it. We like the captains chairs since they swivel and are much more comfy than the stationary bench seats. We leave the big dinette into a bed full time.
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Old 01-19-2020, 07:04 PM   #13
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Name: Steve
Trailer: Currently Shopping
NW Wisconsin
Posts: 3,816
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jann Todd View Post
Casita's are well built and their resale value is very good. A nice one doesn't stay on the market very long. If you want to get started get one then find what you want then sell the current one. We did that and sold our first old Casita in one day for what we had in it and we'd used it 2 years. Bought our 2007 Casita from the factory and still have it. We like the captains chairs since they swivel and are much more comfy than the stationary bench seats. We leave the big dinette into a bed full time.
We recently sold our 2013 17ft Casita SD which we purchased new
It was a well built , quality , dependable , reliable , comfortable trailer but was just a little small for our wants and needs .
After 6 years of service we sold it for about 85% of our original purchase price
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Old 01-25-2020, 11:21 AM   #14
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Name: BettyLouise
Trailer: Oliver Legacy Elite II
North Carolina
Posts: 1
To Newly Retired Shopper

Although not yet on the market, we will be putting our 2017 loaded Oliver Elite Legacy II on the market in late February. If you are still interested at that time, keep your eyes peeled for our ad here and elsewhere!
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Old 01-25-2020, 12:10 PM   #15
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Name: Dan
Trailer: Casita 17 SD
Florida
Posts: 13
Fiberglass

You are making a good choice with fiberglass, they hold together, don't leak and are generally economical (then there is the Oliver). Casita and Scamp are narrow trailers but have what you need, you mention the Escape 19 - really a nice option and if you buy in Canada it is a very good deal. Bigfoot makes a 17 that is wider than Scamp or Casita that looks really nice and would probably be the width of your F150. Good luck and hope to see you at one of the Fiberglass rallies.
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Old 01-25-2020, 12:58 PM   #16
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Trailer: 17 ft Casita
Posts: 4
We have a 17’ Casita, which is our second one. The first was the Spirit model, which we liked a lot for 5 years, then decided we didn’t like climbing over one another for night time bathroom runs, which increase with age ��. The new one we’ve had for 4 years and still love it. We got the Liberty, and set it up to use as nice long benches by day, using them as twin beds at night. We have traveled all over Florida and are now planning longer trips. We like the slim design and ease of towing in our Casita, and never thought of upgrading. We are minimalist campers, and utilize the outdoor space as much as we can, so don’t need to drag much with us, so works well. We have 2 tubs which slide under the table at back, for all our clothes, and which double as cat beds! The four of us, 2 adults and 2 kitties do fine. Whatever you choose, have fun!
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Old 01-25-2020, 01:06 PM   #17
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Name: Mitzi
Trailer: LilSnoozy 12/01/16, Tug 2012 Dodge Citadel
Florida
Posts: 539
I'm suprise no one has yet suggested you attend a Rally. There are lots aof rallies and be aware that many who don't have a particular brand will also attend. For instance there is a rally every January up at Spirit of the Suwanee campground every January. I went in my lil Snoozy despite the fact it wasn't it wasn't a Snoozy rally (I think it was the casita- but there were a couple other brands represented). Most of us love our lil trailers and are very happy to show them off. It really helps to eyeball (and sit and lie down) in an actual representative. For ex- I was convinced thru 2015 that Rpod was the way to go. When we actually found one at a dealer we "tried it on for size" and it was not a fit. Had we NOT done this I might have actually bought an RPOD.

I LOVE my little all electric Snoozy and don't mind showing it off. Contact me if you want to see mine-I'm pretty close to you.

As far as solar the guest speaker at 2019's rally was a solar guy from Ft Lauderdale. And he owns a fiberglass. So there are ways to get you want.
(I also don't mind running my quiet little generator when I need to for heat or a/c. That said, I was a minimalist backpacker for many years and frankly deal much better with the cold than with the heat. When travelling I find a 200 watt heater does me much better than the 1000/1500 watt heater that came with my snoozy..

I had lurked on RVTravel.com forum for 12 years prior to actually becoming serious about choosing a new Fiberglass trailer. My desires went from a motorcycle trailer (Aspen) to a Teardrop (LilBuddy) to a Fiberglass. I knew I wasn't handy enough to recondition anything and was about in tears about the sad state of the RV industry (if you frequent RVTravel.com you will become very aware of the shoddy state of new campers) when I suddenly remembered seeing ad in the back of the AARP news about Casitas and Scamps. When I googled Scamp this forum was one of the hits. The people here are all wonderful. Of course there are several I don't agree with here but no one said we all have to march to the same drummer.
Good luck with the search!
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Old 01-25-2020, 01:14 PM   #18
Nan
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Name: Nan
Trailer: Looking at Oliver Legacy II trailers
Georgia
Posts: 4
Check out the Oliver Elite II camper. It is made in Tennessee, so no dealers are involved. I have one. It is a 4 season camper.
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Old 01-25-2020, 03:08 PM   #19
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Name: Dan
Trailer: Casita 17 SD
Florida
Posts: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by kate raslavsky View Post
We have a 17’ Casita, which is our second one. The first was the Spirit model, which we liked a lot for 5 years, then decided we didn’t like climbing over one another for night time bathroom runs, which increase with age ��. The new one we’ve had for 4 years and still love it. We got the Liberty, and set it up to use as nice long benches by day, using them as twin beds at night. We have traveled all over Florida and are now planning longer trips. We like the slim design and ease of towing in our Casita, and never thought of upgrading. We are minimalist campers, and utilize the outdoor space as much as we can, so don’t need to drag much with us, so works well. We have 2 tubs which slide under the table at back, for all our clothes, and which double as cat beds! The four of us, 2 adults and 2 kitties do fine. Whatever you choose, have fun!
I know the pain of the climb over, I solved the problem (I think) by making the side dinette into a bed with a wood frame that extends the width to 27" - half of a full size bed. Then built a fitted frame for the rear and had a mattress made for each space. The rear table and cushions are stored in a mattress bag in my attic. Made a small table using a folding tripod that can go outside as well. So far it has worked, we will see when my wife goes camping with me...but she likes the side dinette bed. No climb over at night. OK one caveat, you have to lift the side mattress and frame to open the fridge 90 degrees - but so far I have not had issues with that...it just limits how far you can open the freezer door. Oh yes, the dinette cushions fit behind the partition to go with the tripod table. I have some pictures of this on FB.
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Old 02-18-2020, 07:06 AM   #20
vin
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Name: vince
Trailer: escape
Georgia
Posts: 33
Egg shopping

We started with a new casita which we picked up at the factory and shortly realized it was too small for us and my back needed a real mattress. Once inside a 21' Escape we found our fit. Picked it up at the factory with minimal but necessary accessories for us. It has been worth the effort. We sold our Casita in one day for almost what we paid but realizing the 7% sales tax was a loss. We then had to pay another 7% tax on our Escape. I would be as sure as you can to buy what you need the first time. Sales tax gets expensive so take your time and be sure.
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