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Topic: Best light weight camper under 20 feet?

Posted By: LivingthedreamOH on 02/26/12 06:39am

We have friends in the market for a small light weight camper for two adults under 20 feet...no kid space needed. Suggestions?

* This post was edited 02/26/12 06:46am by LivingthedreamOH *


LivingthedreamOH
2011 F-150 Lariat
2012 Bullet Premier 28RLPR


Posted By: jdrphs on 02/26/12 06:55am

Do they have a price range and do they wish to have a hybrid or normal TT. What is the tow vehicle. I am shopping for the same thing, and have looked at the cheaper side of things as we are looking for our first one.


Posted By: LivingthedreamOH on 02/26/12 07:13am

They want light weight.. Under 4,000. No price range. Normal TT.


Posted By: retiredtraveler on 02/26/12 07:15am

We're exactly in same market and have been looking for 6 months now. I will assume they can tow whatever they like. Personally, we have an absolute requirement for a slide (for room) and no hybrid.

Forest River Rpods
Cruiser RV - Fun Finder X
KZ Spree Escape
Gulf Stream Visa
Lance 1575 (expensive, but our first choice for now)

There are also a host of the other types of campers. A frames (such as Chalet or Alpine), or 'bullet shaped' such as Scamps. We personally find them too small, but matter of opinion.

These models are also some of the lightest. Lots of manufacturers use 'lite' in their descriptions, but will weigh 300-500 more pounds than other models in similar lengths. Have to look at specs. The smaller models are all well under 3000 pounds, dry.


Pup: 2007 Jayco 1206 w/slide-out + shower
surge brakes, 54w solar panel
TV: 2005 Nissan Xterra 4X4, manual trans
25 years tent camping, 4000+ miles of hiking, lots of biking


Posted By: jarozi on 02/26/12 07:25am

http://www.airstream.com/travel-trailers/flying-cloud/floorplans/


Posted By: patinlouisiana on 02/26/12 07:26am

We have a Tracer 23fbs by Prime Time and so far the quality has been great!

You might look at this shorter model

2012 Forest River Tracer 199RKS

http://www.rvt.com/rvdetail4847833.htm


I never get lost! Someone always tells me where to go!

2012 Prime time Tracer 230FBS Touring Edition
2010 Toyota Sequoia Limited 4X2



Posted By: gmw photos on 02/26/12 07:55am

So far, I'm very happy with my Funfinder 189FDS ( just under 19' overall, including tongue ). For my personal taste, I needed the added room of a slide. These small trailers in general were a little too cramped if they did not have a slide, but that is a personal thing. They should go and look and sit inside a variety of layouts, and it will pretty quickly become apparent to them what appeals and what does not. Someone mentioned Airstream.....those are very cool for sure, and I know you said they did not set an "upper budget limit", but when they see the price tag of that brand, they may come back to you and say, "yes indeed, we do need to consider an upper limit !"

Figure an Airstream is going to be roughly double the cost of "SOB" ( some other box ) as the Airstream folk like to say. Nice trailers, we each have to decide where the "value" lies.

Here is a pic of my funfinder.

EDIT: my FF weighs 3600 as it sits there and is a bit under 4000 when I'm really ready to roll with everything I would take.




Posted By: Cedarhill on 02/26/12 08:03am

I considered buying a Camplite since there is a local dealer and inspected the unit very carefully. The design, construction and materials are everything the company claims. They were impressive.

There are two reasons why I didn't buy one. First of all, the largest unit is smaller than what we really wanted. The second reason is the inside feel. There really is no wood anywhere. It is utterly devoid of styling. It is mostly metal and plastic. It reminded me of a mock up of the International Space Station I went in minus the instruments and controls. I wasn't sure I could get used to that.

Squonk61 wrote:

I look at campers a LOT and came across this brand: CampLite. Haven't heard much about them but they are super lite-even shows a smaller one being towed by a MiniCooper! anyone know anything? Reviews?

Clicky



Posted By: cpaharley2008 on 02/26/12 08:15am

My Lance 1575 has a sticker weight of 2800#, sleeps 4, slide and 6 windows! Tankless water heater for unlimited hot water, awning and dry bath, for less than $22K. One more thing, it is all fiberglass, no roof leak issues. Total length is 19', living space is 16", single axle saves on tolls.
http://www.lancecamper.com/travel-trailers/1575/


2009 Dodge Ram Hemi 4x4 11,300miles- lifetime warranty
2012 Toyota FJ-500 miles
2014 Escape 21' All Season trailer


Posted By: WyoTraveler on 02/26/12 08:29am

I would prefer tandem wheels in a TT of the 15 ft or more length.


2013 Monaco Monarch
2012 Jeep Wrangler
AC6CV, ex-WN8RUR, ex-W8RUR, ex-K7RIO, ex-WB6GBR since 1954
Commercial 1st class Radio Telephone, & Telegraph certificate
ARRL 35 WPM Certificate.



Posted By: Squonk61 on 02/26/12 07:26am

I have a Starcraft Travelstar 193ss and I love it because it has a sofa instead of a dinette and an oversized queensized bed. It's great for me and my daughter. 3750 lbs.
I look at campers a LOT and came across this brand: CampLite. Haven't heard much about them but they are super lite-even shows a smaller one being towed by a MiniCooper! anyone know anything? Reviews?

Clicky


Posted By: travel4family on 02/26/12 08:38am

In a similar situation - but with kids - we just bought a 16' Amerilite with bunks. But I really like both the 16 and 19' that didn't have the bunk floorplans. We looked at most of the other options mentioned in the string. We picked Amerilite for the inside storage space and water. Several others had most of their storage only accessible from the outside (or the only way from the inside was quite awkward. Also on all the small ones, watch the water and black/gray storage. A lot of them are only 10-15 gallons, Amerilite is 20-30 gallons.
Good luck, can't wait to hear what you get!
Good luck!


Posted By: LBL 1206 on 02/26/12 07:50am

Might wanna look at the new Jayco SLX 185BH or the 184 BH.
Light weight, short, well built, and inexpensive.






Posted By: dcb17b on 02/26/12 07:36am

My in-laws have a Jayco,Swift series camper. It is an aluminum skinned,stick framed,lightweight trailer built for towing with smaller vehicles. Theirs is a 14' and they tow it with a Chrysler minivan with no problem. I am pretty impressed with it.


2003 Ford F150 STX Supercab
2004 Dutchmen 24QBSL


Posted By: muelldawg on 02/27/12 03:20pm

We like our JayFeather Sport 165;
16 feet 6 inches; total length 18'


Richard & Marilyn
2010 Jayco, Jay Feather, Sport 16.5 feet
2010 Ford F150, V8, 5.4 liter



Posted By: cpaharley2008 on 02/26/12 08:39am

WyoTraveler wrote:

I would prefer tandem wheels in a TT of the 15 ft or more length.


The extra axle means more weight and more tolls which translates into more costs to own.


Posted By: gmw photos on 02/26/12 09:13am

cpaharley2008 wrote:

WyoTraveler wrote:

I would prefer tandem wheels in a TT of the 15 ft or more length.


The extra axle means more weight and more tolls which translates into more costs to own.

And some would argue that a tandem axle is safer due to the redundancy factor. When you have a flat tire obviously on a single axle, you have nothing else on that side holding you up. Having said that, over the years, I've pulled all types, and the couple of times that I had flats at highway speeds on single axle trailers, it turned out to be essentially a non event from a safety standpoint. Although in both cases, by the time I stopped at the side of the road, the tire was totally destroyed. May have been anyway even if a tandem. The one time I blew a tire on a tandem ( boat trailer ), it too destroyed the tire.

As for the tolls, that too is a non-issue for me considering where I live and drive, but to others it could be different. More to point on costs, a tandem means twice as many tires, brakes and bearings, so that is a possible cost consideration.

That Lance looks really nice !

george

PS EDIT: Some say a tandem tows more stable in crosswinds. I guess the only way we could really get a feel for that would be to do something like hook your Lance up....go out for a drive, come back and hook up my funfinder ( similar size/weight ) to the same TV and go for another drive.
More to the point, it's been my experience, the biggest thing effecting how well they tow is "how well the setup is".....regarding correct tongue weight, WD hitch if needed, etc.


Posted By: vermilye on 02/26/12 09:46am

You might want to take a look at a couple of the Fiberglass "Eggs". They hold their value far longer than stick built trailers, and there are many within your weight range.

I have an Escape 17B and have towed it over 20K miles with a Toyota RAV4. On my Fiberglass Trailer Links page I have links to Blogs, Manufacturers & Forums that deal with fiberglass trailers.


Jon Vermilye Travel & Photo Web Pages ... My Collection of RV Blogs & Journals
My Travel Journal - Jon's Journeys
Lake McDonald, Glacier National Park, MT



Posted By: mogman on 02/26/12 09:50am

Lance line of trailers. I just purchased a 1685.Waiting for the weather to warm up and go campin'.


'11 Ford E350 extended SD. 6.8 V10 3.73
'12 Lance 1685


Posted By: chiefneon on 02/26/12 10:34am

Howdy!

You might also want to look at a Casita 17'. Nice, small, compact, light weight.


"Casita Travel Trailers"

"Happy trails"
chiefneon


Posted By: gtkato on 02/26/12 10:37am

We did a lot or research and hands on demos last year, and ended up with the Rockwood Mini-Lite 1809S (TV - Nissan Xterra V-6). Compared the Fun Finder 18ft models, Heartland MPG with slide-outs, R-Pods, and Lance 1685 (2011 model), Jayco, Apex, and decided on the Mini-Lite for Dollar value and features/quality.
I have since purchased a newer Dodge V-8 Hemi and now thinking of purchasing the Lance 1685(true 4 season) since I do a lot of fly fishing into the winter. I have owned two other Lance Truck Campers and like the quality and four season capability.
The new Lance 1575 is a great trailer also and the NEW V-Cross VIBEs will be hitting the market soon. The new Koala TT also look very well built


FlyFishn
2014 Lance 1985 with 4 Season Cert, 160w Solar, Blue Ox Sway Pro
2011 Ram "Outdoorsman" Hemi with max Tow Package, Timbren



Posted By: gtkato on 02/26/12 11:02am

We did a lot or research and hands on demos last year, and ended up with the Rockwood Mini-Lite 1809S (TV - Nissan Xterra V-6). Compared the Fun Finder 18ft models, Heartland MPG with slide-outs, R-Pods, and Lance 1685 (2011 model), Jayco, Apex, and decided on the Mini-Lite for Dollar value and features/quality.
I have since purchased a newer Dodge V-8 Hemi and now thinking of purchasing the Lance 1685(true 4 season) since I do a lot of fly fishing into the winter. I have owned two other Lance Truck Campers and like the quality and four season capability.
The new Lance 1575 is a great trailer also and the NEW V-Cross VIBEs will be hitting the market soon. The new Koala TT also look very well built


Posted By: Dick_B on 02/26/12 11:41am

www.trailmanor.com


Dick_B
2003 SunnyBrook 27FKS
2011 3/4 T Chevrolet Suburban
Equal-i-zer Hitch
One wife, two bikes (both Electric Schwinn's with motor assist)


Posted By: Michael in MN on 02/26/12 12:08pm

Cedarhill wrote:

I considered buying a Camplite since there is a local dealer and inspected the unit very carefully. The design, construction and materials are everything the company claims. They were impressive.

There are two reasons why I didn't buy one. First of all, the largest unit is smaller than what we really wanted. The second reason is the inside feel. There really is no wood anywhere. It is utterly devoid of styling. It is mostly metal and plastic. It reminded me of a mock up of the International Space Station I went in minus the instruments and controls. I wasn't sure I could get used to that.

Squonk61 wrote:

I look at campers a LOT and came across this brand: CampLite. Haven't heard much about them but they are super lite-even shows a smaller one being towed by a MiniCooper! anyone know anything? Reviews?

Clicky


I bought a 16' bunk model with lots of options for $18,500+tax. I have four nights & about 900 miles of towing this winter.

So far, so good.

You really have to like the somewhat sterile, industrial interior though. Even the floor is aluminum. I prefer the aluminum look to the faux wood, ugly wallpaper, plastic floor look of pretty much everything else, so for me, they are styled to my taste.

I'd rather have the Camplite welded aluminum cabinets that close with an industrial latch than anything that I've seen on any other trailer at any price point (including the $500k motor homes. And for a bonus, this is the only trailer out of a hundred or so that I looked at where the interior partitions don't flex, bend or rattle.






-----------------------------
LivinLite Camplite 16BHB
2011 Ford F150 EgoBoost


Posted By: cm on 02/26/12 12:19pm

Michael in Minn

With an aluminum frame, floor, skin, how is it insulated?


Posted By: Cedarhill on 02/26/12 12:21pm

At the expense of hijacking the thread a little bit, would you mind sharing the fuel economy of the Camplite/EcoBoost combination?


Posted By: Padlin on 02/26/12 12:29pm

19' Escape


Happy Motoring
Bob & Deb

W Ma.
12 F150 HD SCAB EcoBoost LB 4x4
14 Escape 5.0 TA


Posted By: gmw photos on 02/26/12 12:43pm

this looks cool too ! Although I have not seen one in person, I really would like to check it out:

http://www.escapetrailer.com/Products/Escape50.aspx


Posted By: gmw photos on 02/26/12 12:54pm

Michael in MN wrote:

Cedarhill wrote:

I considered buying a Camplite since there is a local dealer and inspected the unit very carefully. The design, construction and materials are everything the company claims. They were impressive.

There are two reasons why I didn't buy one. First of all, the largest unit is smaller than what we really wanted. The second reason is the inside feel. There really is no wood anywhere. It is utterly devoid of styling. It is mostly metal and plastic. It reminded me of a mock up of the International Space Station I went in minus the instruments and controls. I wasn't sure I could get used to that.

Squonk61 wrote:

I look at campers a LOT and came across this brand: CampLite. Haven't heard much about them but they are super lite-even shows a smaller one being towed by a MiniCooper! anyone know anything? Reviews?

Clicky



I bought a 16' bunk model with lots of options for $18,500+tax. I have four nights & about 900 miles of towing this winter.

So far, so good.

You really have to like the somewhat sterile, industrial interior though. Even the floor is aluminum. I prefer the aluminum look to the faux wood, ugly wallpaper, plastic floor look of pretty much everything else, so for me, they are styled to my taste.

I'd rather have the Camplite welded aluminum cabinets that close with an industrial latch than anything that I've seen on any other trailer at any price point (including the $500k motor homes. And for a bonus, this is the only trailer out of a hundred or so that I looked at where the interior partitions don't flex, bend or rattle.





Michael,
I too looked at the Camplite at the RV show. As you say, a person either likes that kind of interior or they don't. It did look to be well built.
I also looked at an Ed B Airstream, and I came away with a similar feeling regarding the inside. Sort of seemed like a hospital operating room. My personal taste runs more towards a residential style interior, so that was part of my comments earlier to the OP, they really do need to spend the time and effort to go and look at and sit in all of them.

Ha ......I like your camping spot there in the snow ! It's nice camping in the winter and having the place to yourself. A few weeks ago I went to our local state park, and there was me.....and..... the camp hosts at the other end of the park. That was it ! Spent a couple days walking many of the hiking trails with my dog in complete solitude.


Posted By: cpaharley2008 on 02/26/12 01:04pm

I do believe Camplite will do the interior with Azdel wood composite. They also offer the rounded front as an option.


Posted By: CavemanCharlie on 03/01/12 04:02pm

I have a older used travel trailer and like it a lot, it's no longer made but, the Jayco Jay Flight 185 RB is very similar to what I have in layout.

I like the rear bath design. I had a 16 foot before that had the bath in the center and it took up all the room in the trailer and still did not give you a very big bath.


Posted By: dakasa47 on 02/29/12 06:42pm

Hi,
We bought our 21ft FunFinder X new in 2007. It is just the 2 of us and we love it. The FF did not offer slides at that time on the 21ft .A slide would be nice and give us a little more moving around each other room. FF also has a 13ft and an 18ft. We talk aboud trading it in for something newer and maybe bigger with a slide but the thought of not having our little, cozy, dependable FF makes us both sad Its our first RV It weights 3,700 pounds.


David and Marianne
2010 Tundra
2007 FunFinder 21'


Posted By: unimogdave on 02/29/12 06:39pm

We have a 2011 Crossover 189Q. 19Ft 2inch overall. Great couples trailer (only sleeps 3 with dinette). I had the unfortuneate opportunity to test it on the worst Road conditions last summer and everything remained solid. The trailer stickered at 2714# with options and 3800# GVWR on a single axle platform. Anyway here is what sold us on this trailer for 2 of us. Double Door Fridge freezer 6 cu ft, double sinks, double propane tanks. 30 gal fresh water for weekend boondocking. Separate sink in bathroom so no brushing teeth in the kitchen sink. Permanent Queen Bed. Nice size hanging closet for coats, shoes etc. Nice size area for a TV. 12ft Awning. Aluminum Frame. ($14,000 CDN) There are benefits to dual and single axle setups. I would not let a flat tire be the deciding factor because whether it is single or dual the tire still needs to be fixed.


Posted By: cruzbill on 02/27/12 07:12pm

Take a look at Sunnybrook Harmony. We just bought a 20FBS, single slideout. About 4600# ready to roll. Measures 17' 4" front to back (excluding A frame tongue and rear bumper. I tow it with a Jeep Liberty using a WD hitch. Harmony makes the best quality trailers compared to all I've seen, and we looked at all the brands before we bought the Harmony. Real gelcoat exterior, not filon. 2" walls, biggest holding tanks, 43 gal h2o tank. Everywhere you can see quality-Look inside a cabinet, its all finished, all plumbing vent pipes blocked in and covered, wheel wells inside blocked in and finished. First class, USA made components, right down to the clearance lights and lights on the inside of the trailer (Command Electronics). Crowned roof so water rolls right off. Try the 21 FBS, single slide with walkaround queen bed (60x80) not 60x74. I could go on and on, but all out there should take a look at these trailers. Sunnybrook was recently bought out by Winnebago, so I'm hoping the new corporate owners don't mess with a good thing.
No, I don's work for Sunnybrook, but just want to point out that there is an alternative to all the cheap junk out there. Don't flame me, just my opinion after 25+ years of RVing.

Best wishes to you and your freinds

Cruzbill
Harmony 20FBS


Posted By: Sunbird on 02/27/12 10:07pm

We downsized from a 20' stick-built to a 17'Casita and are delighted with it. It has everything that 2 people need, it is a delight to tow, gets good gas mileage, and is very well built. About 2300 pounds. The factory in Texas sells new ones direct to the public. We bought ours used from a local dealer.






Posted By: Pat in Speedway on 02/27/12 11:20pm

My wife & I fit comfortably in our Serro Scotty. http://scottytrailers.com/ It's got a front and rear dinette, wet bath, AC, furnace, microwave...everything one needs for a fun camping experience. Plus, it looks cool! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6OVcorTZjB0&nomobile=1

Lots of great options in the small trailer market though. I'm a big fan of Camp Lite. They're built very well.


Pat B.
Speedway, IN
2010 Serro Scotty HiLander
http://smalltrailerenthusiast.com



Posted By: earnesttee on 02/27/12 04:17pm

We have a new amerilite 21mb have been happy so far.It has queen front bed with full bath in rear and 36 gallon waste tanks.Weight is under four thousand


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