Camper for a family of 6

Discussion in 'Camper Pre-Purchase Questions' started by tenny80, Feb 3, 2017.

  1. tenny80

    tenny80 New Member

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    Hi we are looking for a camper for a family of 6. I have an F150 with the tow package to allow 9000lb so I am not worried about weight limits.

    I am however worried about towing.. I've never towed anything before! I know for a family of 6 we should probably be looking at a 30' travel trailer... but towing it... not so sure I want to start out with that!

    I absolutely LOVE tent camping so I figured a pup would be the way to go. I've read about a lot of the negatives with them such as bathrooms, packing, not being able to make lunch on the road, etc.

    We will hopefully use it a lot.. my oldest son plays rep baseball that sees us travelling all over the place. Saving on hotels and food costs is one of the reasons for a trailer. Typically on those trips it's just me and the one boy (the others dont like sitting at a ball diamond for 12 hours a day lol). There will be a few long weekend family camping trips a year and then i'd also use it a few times a year for a buddy and I to go away dirt biking for the weekend.

    My wife really wants a bathroom with privacy, not sure that exists with a pup. She'd also like AC and being able to pull over for bathroom breaks, lunch, etc so a Hybrid seems like a good fit but i've read a lot of horror stories about leaks on the older ones.

    Budget is a MAX of 10k CAD but i'd love to spend half that.

    Should I be looking at the 30' travel trailers, hybrids, etc, any advice is greatly welcome. What's it like towing a 12' pup vs a 30' tt, backing it into campgrounds, etc. thanks!
     
  2. Orchid

    Orchid Sharp Shootin' Grandma

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    Good news .... a pup actually IS a 30' travel trailer once it's open. [:D]

    I'm sure you will get some good advice on models to look at.
     
  3. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

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    First off, Welcome to the Portal from the Northwestern Edge of the GTA, Hopefully you can join us for one of the Rallies we have planned for this season, to read more and join in the conversations on them click one the links below ..

    2017 Kick Off to Summer

    2017 Ontario Rally

    2017 Thanksgiving Gathering

    Well you can tow just about anything, so that is a good start. When you get to larger bigger trailers there are a few other factors that will come into play, but for a pup your great.. (pup=Pop UP trailer)

    You don't need a 30ft TT (Travel Trailer) one of the larger sized pups should do you for a few years.. Like everything else being comfortable tow all comes down to doing it and practice.

    Those are only negatives if you let them be negatives.. When we owned our pup we kept all the camping/trailer stuff in the trailer and packed stuff like all the food, suitcases, coolers and wood in the back of the truck.. The big negative for us was having to deal with wet canvas when packing up, even though I pack it at my parents and can pop it up and air it out, it was still a pain.. Others however would find this a minor inconvenience..

    Your idea to use it to save on hotels while traveling around to ball games is great in theory, but I found (and many others) that seldom are the tournaments close to a campground of any sort.. and when you factor in that a electrical site at a "C" class Provincial Park will run you mid $40 per night and an "A" class park will be up to $55 in some cases,, you won't be saving much... HOWEVER!! for those family trips around the Province, Country and even into the States.. It is a great way to see places at a reasonable cost (whether it is with a pup,TT or HTT).. Or for dirt biking around.

    You can get pups with toilets and showers (or get a porta-potti and do a shower mod to the trailer {if needed I can point you to a buddies site for info on doing the later}) , AC isn't a problem to get on most pups, some it can't be done to to roof design, but the majority of them it can be added to the roof with little to no issues. Now as for pulling over for bathroom breaks and fixing lunch.. while it isn't impossible with a pup, it is pretty much impractical. When we had our pup, we made sandwiches and carried them in the truck and then we could stop wherever along the way and eat..

    The real big issue with the older HTT's (Hybrid Travel Trailer) is/was the front bunk seal and latch design (think I can also direct you to a place for the latch mod if needed too) that would allow water to leak in if you were driving in a medium to heavy rain..

    Descent budget .. Not sure where you are in the Province, but here are a couple assorted selections from the first dealer I would recommend (Niagara Trailers) Other then taking a very quick look at the ads I didn't look at them in detail..

    http://inventory.niagaratrailers.com/RV-Details.asp?per-page=100&flag=&wweightt=&sfrom=&sort-orders=price%2Dasc&slengthf=&ssearch=&sstatus=PreOwned&syearf=&ssto=&stype=&stype2=&slengthto=&wweightf=&syeart=&VEHICLE_NO=521042&DEALER_NO=4091

    http://inventory.niagaratrailers.com/RV-Details.asp?per-page=100&flag=&wweightt=&sfrom=&sort-orders=price%2Dasc&slengthf=&ssearch=&sstatus=PreOwned&syearf=&ssto=&stype=&stype2=&slengthto=&wweightf=&syeart=&VEHICLE_NO=526828&DEALER_NO=4091

    http://inventory.niagaratrailers.com/RV-Details.asp?per-page=100&flag=&wweightt=&sfrom=&sort-orders=price%2Dasc&slengthf=&ssearch=&sstatus=PreOwned&syearf=&ssto=&stype=&stype2=&slengthto=&wweightf=&syeart=&VEHICLE_NO=524952&DEALER_NO=4091

    http://inventory.niagaratrailers.com/RV-Details.asp?per-page=100&flag=&wweightt=&sfrom=&sort-orders=price%2Dasc&slengthf=&ssearch=&sstatus=PreOwned&syearf=&ssto=&stype=&stype2=&slengthto=&wweightf=&syeart=&VEHICLE_NO=526814&DEALER_NO=4091

    My second choice for a decent dealer would be Rustons RV .. Talk to a salesman named Bill ..

    This choice is completely yours, you have to decide, make a list of "Wants", "Needs" and "be nice to have" and start from there.. I can tell you this, backing up a larger (longer) trailer is actually much easier then backing up a shorter trailer.. Nice thing with a pup is you can in many cases see over the top of it when backing up but the reaction to a steering command is much quicker then a longer (say 30ft) TT..

    Hope this rather long post helps you some what.. and again please do check out the Rally links posted above..
     
  4. tenny80

    tenny80 New Member

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    I'd be very interested in a rally, I've attended a few motorcycle ones and had a fantastic time! We are located in Kingston.

    That's what I am hoping, and honestly with the 14 year olds I'm not so sure they wont be to cool for it within a year or two!

    Even at $55 i'd be saving a ton IF it was all 6 of us. I didn't explain that all that well but the idea is that this year we would try and make it a family activity but my wife and the younger kids would stay at the campground during the day.A lot of times with 6 people we need 2 hotel rooms. Not to mention the cost of food for eating out with 6 people. Although to be fair a lot of times we just brought a cooler and made sandwiches for lunch but dinner was almost always eating out.

    I found someone selling a Rockwood HW275 that has an actual bathroom, most of the time the toilet is just sitting out in the open.

    This is very important because I want to be able to go camping on my own as well with the dirt bike if my buddy cannot make it. Or if I wanted a weekend away with just the youngest boy, at 9 he's not going to be very good at helping me back up haha.

    thank you for the detailed and informed post! We are going to spend the day today running the 401 towards Ottawa and checking out a few different dealers.
     
  5. 94-D2

    94-D2 Happy Campin'

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    I would be looking for something like a niagara high wall with a 14' box. Bathroom, shower, black tank or cassette, oven, microwave, slide out sleeps 8. Or how about a tandem axle Avalon. 16' box. All the comforts on your list plus some. Perhaps an 07' could be had for 10k. The niagara is in the 4,000 lbs range. The Avalon is in the 5,000 lbs range. Rockwood has the 496. They are big pups and they tow great. Motel accommodations for a family of 6 is probably more than $100 a night I would guess. 40-55 a night I'd take if it had hook ups. With the family of six, set up and take down could happen in short order. And what a great way to augment the sports event for the whole family.


    Good luck with the hunt and happy camping.
     
  6. Bigpopper2008

    Bigpopper2008 Member

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    We had the Avalon which is a great PUP. Traded to HTT for all the reasons noted. Ease of set up, storage, real bathroom and ability to pull over and use the inside if you want. Sleeps 6 easy. Tows harder for sure but that's the trade off. Used HTT may be had for similar $ maybe. Good luck.
     
  7. tenny80

    tenny80 New Member

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  8. mpking

    mpking Well-Known Member

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    Well,
    The 2009 Brochure (Best I could find quick): (for the 220 Rock Crawler)
    https://www.kz-rv.com/brochures/2009/KZ09_CoyoteBroch.pdf

    Put's it at a GVWR of 7,000lbs, with a "Dry" hitch weight of 334lbs.

    Looks like it's WELL within your limits.

    Other people here have the cargo decks, hopefully they will chime in. I think most of them just load the gear on the deck versus the truck bed. Maybe throw some water in the freshwater tank if it's infront of the axel.
     
  9. gardenbliss

    gardenbliss Well-Known Member

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    How tall is your wife? If you get a highwall, it will be difficult for her to pop up and down by herself if she wants to do a ladies weekend, or take the kids a day early and set up before you get off work. Just something to keep in mind.
     
  10. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

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    Found a 2008 and the GVWR on it is 6500lbs with a TW of 334lbs .. As stated within your limits.. Loaded with the dirt bikes on the front I suspect the TW would be closer to 500 lbs depending on the bikes weight, which would put you into the World of WDH (Weight Distribution Hitch) mind you even at 334lbs TW and a GVWR of 6500 lbs (plus seeing as the 2009 says 7000lbs) your probably looking at one anyways..
     
  11. tenny80

    tenny80 New Member

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    she's 4'11

    she wont even drive the truck let alone tow a trailer though so no concerns there :)
     
  12. tenny80

    tenny80 New Member

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    with 32' of total length on this thing it wont fit at my Dad's place for storage... I'd have to rent outdoor parking at a storage facility. The one closest to my house wants $20 a week which is going to add up real fast.
     
  13. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

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    One of the downsides to having a larger trailer is finding a place to store it.. One benefit of having a pup, most of them can be stored in a garage.. Mind you just over $1000 for the year isn't too bad for storage.. I know several places just West of T.O charge up to $2000 per year for outside storage.. Others charge a a flat fee plus $1 per ft a month, still adding up to over $1500 per year..

    Keep looking at all types and be open to having to travel a bit to find the right unit.. While this time of year isn't the cheapest time to be looking I do think it is the best time to be looking if your going to buy from a dealer only because they have a bunch of trailers crowding their lots from late season trade-ins as well as left over year olds to move and make room for the new units that will be arriving soon..

    Also check out up coming rv shows... I know there is one more soon for the Toronto area (might be worth the drive) and should be a couple more in your area..

    One of the biggest pieces of info I can give pre-purchase is, when you find one you like or if going to a show, take everyone whom will be camping (except the dog or cat) along and pile into the trailer and sit down for a few minutes and imagine it is pouring rain... Is there enough space for everyone to relax and be comfortable as well as move around..
     
  14. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

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  15. frankvanw1

    frankvanw1 London, Ontario, Canada

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  16. frankvanw1

    frankvanw1 London, Ontario, Canada

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    tenny,
    I actually like that Coyote, it has everything. I would definitely have to take a look at it on a good bright day to check it all out before purchasing. Depending on the previous owners and how they used it this could be good deal.
    As far as towing and backing up goes, practice will not make you perfect although better.
    Good luck in your search.
     
  17. tenny80

    tenny80 New Member

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    There is a show next weekend in Ottawa that we are going to check out.

    The outdoor storage option might just be the way that I go.. it just defeats the purpose of the cargo area. I was thinking i'd be able to load it up with everything and head out on to the road, but if it's not at my house that's going to be difficult. I'd just have to do it the night before or something.

    I like the looks of this pup: http://www.kijiji.ca/v-travel-trailer-camper/city-of-toronto/2010-jayco-jay-series-1206-pop-up-trailer-camper/1233116834

    but my wife is pretty set on having one with a washroom with some privacy so that really limits the options.
     
  18. tenny80

    tenny80 New Member

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    I really like it as well. Canvas looked great, no signs of leaks,etc. Price seemed good for what you get compared to other dealers!
     

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