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Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers  >  Small TT's

 > Livin Lite Camplite owner - review/comments

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Michael in MN

MN

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Posted: 02/26/12 09:00pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

A couple of questions about Camplite aluminum travel trailers came up in another thread, and rather than hijack that thread, I'll start a new one & try to answer any/all questions.

I recently purchased a Camplite 16BHB trailer & have since spent a few nights in it. I bought it late Dec 2011 for $18,500+tax. I have four nights & about 900 miles of towing this winter. I'm not new to camping (45+ years) but I am new to campers and travel trailers. This is my first non-tent.

The Camplite is fairly unique. There is no wood. The frame, structure, roof, siding, cabinets and bunks are all welded aluminum. The interior panels are either aluminum or Azdel. The floor is aluminum. The axles, stabilizers and steps are steel.

The most visual difference is that the interior is not 'residential'. It's somewhat sterile & industrial. I prefer the aluminum look to the faux wood, wallpaper, vinyl floor look of pretty much everything else, so for me, it is styled to my taste. I joke that it's the 'ambulance look'.

Another opinion:

Cedarhill wrote:

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.


The 'space station look', I like that. Make sure that you like the look before you take the leap.

It is quality construction. 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. The Azdel sheathing isn't as rigid as I'd prefer though. If I had custom ordered it, I might have gotten a fully aluminum interior.

The components (furnace, fans, fridge, air) are ordinary RV components. None are unique to Camplite. The stove top appears to be a good quality unit. The glass cover is nearly flush with the counter top, so it's easier to use as a work surface. The wet bath is small, to say the least. The furnace is really noisy.

Mine has the optional rear deck. The trailer frame and aluminum floor extend 3' beyond the rear of the trailer, making a platform that should be able to haul bikes, a scooter, a grill, camping gear or a rocking chair with a mannequin dressed to look like an old lady.

Some questions/answers:

cm wrote:

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


The floor on mine is uninsulated, though it appears as though they offer spray on floor insulation as an option. I slept in it at roughly -10F with the heat off. The floor was cold. My spilled espresso froze instantly.

The walls are insulated with what I presume is some form of polystyrene (they call it 'block foam'). The ceiling is insulated with 'block foam'. When I warmed up the trailer from -10F I had condensation wherever there was no insulation. I used the opportunity to mark the locations of the studs & joists for future DIY's. At +10F a single electric heater kept the trailer sleeping-bag comfortable overnight.

I can make the floor more comfortable in the cold by cutting high density closed cell foam or industrial carpeting to fit. I'm experimenting a bit. Livin Lite also offers snap-in carpeting as an option.

Cedarhill wrote:

...would you mind sharing the fuel economy of the Camplite/EcoBoost combination?


It depends on how fast I drive. I've gotten as low as 9mpg against a strong headwind and I've got 11mpg taking it easy at 55mph. I got about 10.5mpg at 60-65 with winter blend fuel on a cold day. I am hoping I do better in summer. The combination doesn't seem to be special as far as economy goes.



If anyone else has a Camplite, give a shout.


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

SooperDaddy

Southern California

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Posted: 02/26/12 09:13pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you are moving up from Tent Camping, this likely IS like a palace. But for some who have been used to all the ammenities...it is functional but only a Monk would feel like he was in the lap of luxury! That trailer is SOLID tho'!








My posts shouldn't be taken for factual data, and are purely fictional, for entertainment purposes, should not be constituted as related to scientific, technical, engineering, legal, religious, spiritual, or practical advice. After all it's FREE! Amen.


rexlion

Broken Arrow OK

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Posted: 02/26/12 10:03pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for the comments, glad to know some firsthand details. I've been admiring these trailers for their apparent durable nature. Maybe in about 6 or 7 years I'll be ready to trade to a truck camper, and the LivinLite is on my short list.


Mike G.
2008 Toyota Highlander
sold trailer, shopping for another



Lowsuv

Oregon

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Posted: 02/26/12 10:34pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thank you for your review and your candidness.
Are towing this thing at 65 or more ?
Sixteen years ago I bought a 1995 Nomad 1661 trailer which has similar dimensions to your camplite. When I got my new 1997 Chevy 7.4L pickup we took several lengthy trips with it. I had my foot in it the whole time because that 454 would tow that little trailer around so effortlessly both for going and stopping.
I imagine you will be adding some block foam underneath the floor before too long.
Very cool idea for a trailer. I'm a boater and of course welded aluminum boats are the cats meow for the rough water fishing guys.
Keep the info coming. With $ 5 diesel fuel just a few months away there will be plenty of interested buyers.

Francesca Knowles

Port Hadlock, Washington

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Posted: 02/26/12 11:18pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I am SO jealous!

I've been drooling over those trailers for ages...Camplite's so far ahead of the game it makes my head spin. Look forward to the rest of the RV industry catching up in coming years.

The day when folks will settle for shoddy, short-life construction is becoming a thing of the past, though I s'pose there will always be some market for the particle board and 1/8 in. plywood-based rig one has to begin weathersealing the minute it comes off the lot...

Enjoy!


" Not every mind that wanders is lost. " With apologies to J.R.R. Tolkien

pasusan

PA

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Posted: 02/27/12 05:13am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I am jealous too! I could go for the space station look - I think I would add instruments and controls (for the look) and hang out in the desert.

My BIL got one of the Quicksilver tent trailers and he loves it. Way too expensive for the primitiveness of it! But the full size trailers look to have everything you need.

Thanks for telling us about it!


Trip Pics

"I'm out here to enjoy nature -- don't talk to me about the environment!" ~Denny Crane

Susan & Ben ~
84 Bronco & 90 Award Classic 23 joined with a Hensley Cub


Michael in MN

MN

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Posted: 02/27/12 06:32am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

fordsooperdooty wrote:

If you are moving up from Tent Camping, this likely IS like a palace. But for some who have been used to all the ammenities...it is functional but only a Monk would feel like he was in the lap of luxury! That trailer is SOLID tho'!

As far as amenities, the Camplite is roughly equivalent to its peers (7' x 16' square boxes with no slides) in all areas except the residential look and feel. And yes, compared to the monk-like experience of a two-week, 5000 mile tent camping road trip with 3 adults and one Subaru wagon, this is luxury.

Lowsuv wrote:

Are towing this thing at 65 or more ?

I have way too much tow vehicle for this trailer, so yes, my speed often drifts over 65. I don't have WD or anti-sway (yet), and so far it's been OK towing. I'm hoping that I can get by without either.

Lowsuv wrote:

I imagine you will be adding some block foam underneath the floor before too long.

I'm thinking about it. When I bought it, I did not expect to winter camp at all, but because this winter is so mild, and because the state parks are basically empty, it's turning out to be fun. Warming up the floor will help. Right now, I have to wear warm footwear inside the trailer.

Don't tell my DW - but as of yesterday, she now has a pair of snow shoes. Next problem - convincing her that it's safe to go outside in MN winters.

Lowsuv wrote:

Very cool idea for a trailer. I'm a boater and of course welded aluminum boats are the cats meow for the rough water fishing guys.

Agreed. I bounced it down 80 miles of frost heaved state road in northern MN - I think it left the ground at least once - and observed no ill effect other than my new Corel bowls were all upside down. No idea how that happened.

Francesca Knowles wrote:

The day when folks will settle for shoddy, short-life construction is becoming a thing of the past, though I s'pose there will always be some market for the particle board and 1/8 in. plywood-based rig one has to begin weathersealing the minute it comes off the lot...

Even though the roof is a single sheet of aluminum, the Camplite still has conventional caulking around vents and plumbing, so it will require routine roof maintenance, but I'd expect that the aluminum roof will last a long time.

pasusan wrote:

...I think I would add instruments and controls (for the look) and hang out in the desert.


That would be cool.

cpaharley2008

york,pa

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Posted: 02/27/12 07:11am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have the new all fiberglass Lance 1575 with the same windows your Camplite has. I love them in the winter with no condensation and in the summer with the aluminum blinds/awning opening.
Does Camplite offer an insulated floor? Are all you tanks outside or is the fresh located interior? Can you see the framing outlines when it's cold outside and warm inside?


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

CincyGus

Cincinnati

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Posted: 02/27/12 08:18am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have been following Camplite trailers for about 18 months now and had pretty much convinced myself that it was the Travel trailer for me. After buying a popup last year and discovering some rot, that really discouraged me from considering stick campers. Knowing that welded aluminu boats last a lifetime with minimal repairs needed, I was a huge fan of camplite. The lower weight and ease of towing made me a big fan since I have a half ton Silverado.

After looking at a Keystone Passport 238 a few weeks ago, I discovered that they are fiberglass and aluminum framed. Buying new and having the oppertunity to do the regular maint that makes sure any leak is a short term issue that is addressed right away.

I was looking at the 16' CL16DB with a tip out bunk and dinette. The best I could get the local dealer down to was about $17,400 with just a few options (Second propane tank, AM/FM radio, 13.5 BTU AC).

I bought my 238 which is significantly larger (almost 8') and better equipped (Larger fridge and freezer, Microwave, AM/FM/CD/DVD, 19" TV, Bigger bathroom, more storage, 15' awning)for about $4000.00 less.

I know there is some value to having a ALL aluminum trailer in the longevity factor and frankly, I'm still a fan of their engineering and designs I'm keeping my eye on them as they have quietly announced on FB that they are coming out with a 19' or 20' trailer this summer. That in my opinion is something that will fit into many more peoples desired size range and open up some more floorplan options. Might still be a Camplite in my future down the road but for my circumstances ad families wants right now, the 16" was cramping us a little bit.

They are a growing company that is still small enough to listen to their customers and work with them, even in designing or building to suit which is pretty much unheard of with the bigger manufactures, unless of course your taking 6 and 7 digit RV's that are custom built.

Good luck with your camplite. I'm sure it will provide years of fun and you will be able to modify it as you desire to make it your own.


2011 Silverado Crewcab 4x4
2012 Passport 238ML

Hope your travels are safe and the friendships made camping are lasting.


BroncosFan

USA

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Posted: 02/27/12 09:11am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

About the interior, Minimalist camping was the company's foundation when it came to market. Along the lines of cpaharleys question I was curious if the ALU studs wick all the cold temp's to the inside, since the studs don't have block foam. If you look at a framed up camplite that grand total stud surface are is pretty good size. Thanks for sharing your review with us.

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