Should I buy a starter pop-up, or what I REALLY want?

Discussion in 'Camper Pre-Purchase Questions' started by takeitoutside, Aug 2, 2013.

  1. The Postman

    The Postman You gotta love Camping!!

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    Wishing I was at Waskesieu!!
    We bought an inexpensive used Pup for our first trailer, because we were not sure that we would really enjoy it. Our camping season is really only 4 months long, so spending a lot of money on something that sits was not reasonable. It turns out we did like it, so we sold that one in the spring and bought another one that fit our needs a little better. If you feel you can afford it, go newer. If you are not sure you will enjoy it, go a little cheaper, like others have said you can always sell it in the spring and buy another.
     
  2. arthuruscg

    arthuruscg Active Member

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    Used popups sell quickly. Everyone sees them as the cheep way in to see if they like camping.
    I suggest buying what you can afford now, and flip it in a year or 2 for almost what you paid for.
    The small light ones sell in under a week around here. Sometimes as you are putting a for sale sign on them.

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  3. arthuruscg

    arthuruscg Active Member

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    We were also limited by our capacity with the Subaru and I didn't know if the wife would like camping in a popup. (She is a motorhome kind of girl.) The next one is either going to be huge or hard sided trailer.

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  4. Morgan23

    Morgan23 Member

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    If your vehicle can tow it, buy what you want. I think going used is a smart idea just because if you end up NOT liking camping in a PUP, you can always sell for pretty much what you paid for it. But I also know that not everyone has the patience or ability to wait for the right used PUP....so maybe new might work better for you.

    We bought used, cheap and basic. We were also constrained by a 3500lbs tow limit and found that the older PUPs gave us more space/bigger box for the weight when compared to newer units. I scoured Craigslist for probably 2-3 months before we found the perfect PUP for us.

    That being said, we have had our PUP for a year and are already looking at upgrading to a 'nicer' PUP....but only if the perfect one came along! Until we upgrade our TV, we are still working with the lower weight limits...

    I think the most important thing for you will be finding a PUP that your TV can easily tow. Good luck!
     
  5. takeitoutside

    takeitoutside New Member

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    Thanks, everyone.

    I think we're closing in on our personal list of "requirements" (10 ft box, Q/Q or Q/D beds, hot outside shower) vs. "dead weight" (a/c unit, U-shaped table, couch). I think the extra floor space and bed access of a unit with the dinette on the outside wall will make it seem much larger. Seems like The Mister's request for a hot shower puts us into another weight class (now we need a water tank to winterize, and a water heater)

    I appreciate the new vs. used comments, too, but am puzzled by the Baron's that I can't pull an E1: The older E1s are over 2200 lbs, yes, but the new Somerset E1s are 1750 lbs dry (of course, they're more expensive, too). I don't understand how the older versions can be that much heavier.

    Looks like I'm not in such a hurry after all, this may take a while to figure out.

    I called Toyota and was on hold for a long time while the gal did some complicated calculations for my HiHy.

    I'm going to go do some math now... 3500 tow capacity - camping gear - 4 bikes - 1 husband - 2 kids... I think I'm putting everyone on a diet!
     
  6. ChocoChock01

    ChocoChock01 On the road aagaain See Rallies below;

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    Try renting for a while that way you get to camp AND shop for a good deal. If you are waiting to camp before buying may tend to rush the decision. It also allows you to work out what type of set up you need.


    The older E1 were made by Coleman/Fleetwood and the NEW ones by Somerset who bought the rights/designs but have made modifications, such as lighter materials.
     
  7. arthuruscg

    arthuruscg Active Member

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    Did the GVWR change? I bet Somerset made more of the equipment optional, thus allowing a lower dry (pre options) weight.

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  8. gzank6

    gzank6 Member

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    a road trip out west sounds much better than a plane ride...
    note: if you're going to camp at the beach in cali... get your reservations 6 months in advance, they book up in minutes.

    if you have until next year to buy a up, start looking now... deals will be made int he fall, maybe you can spend less than that 6k and get everything you need. Keep in mind... where you going to put the 4 bikes.... going to need a bike rack on that pup.
    and you can leave the washtup/firepit behind... thats alot of space and most campgrounds pits.
    good luck.
     
  9. ChocoChock01

    ChocoChock01 On the road aagaain See Rallies below;

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    look at the propane firepits, they are compact and don't need wood
     
  10. takeitoutside

    takeitoutside New Member

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    Thanks gzank6- our aunt just sold her beach house in SoCal (no!!!!), but there's a state beach park just down the street that we've got our eye on, and we'll be on it when the website opens. We're totally expecting to put bike racks on the top. I saw one last month that had bike racks for 4 and a solar panel on top, but wasn't ready to pull the trigger.

    gzank6 & ChocoChock01- The washtub firepit is only for this one place we spent a week last year- the town of Pagosa Springs, CO lets a bluegrass camp & festival take over one of their parks for over a week. If there's no burn ban, we can use the self-contained firepits. It seemed worth heading down to the hardware store to buy one so the kids could have s'mores.

    For most of the year (including the week of the camp), the park is the town's frisbee golf course. It's pretty fun telling people they can play through your kitchen tent...
     
  11. ChocoChock01

    ChocoChock01 On the road aagaain See Rallies below;

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    which SP in S Ca?
     
  12. takeitoutside

    takeitoutside New Member

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    Auntie lived in San Clemente, and my husband grew up out there surfing most summers, so that's where we're planning to go, using the popup as a way to afford to stay in the town. The kids loved boogie boarding there last year and eating good mexican food.
     
  13. speckhunter80

    speckhunter80 Well-Known Member

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    If you can pull it I would recommend a Bayside or Niagara
     
  14. BigBaron

    BigBaron Dreaming of Tommy's chili cheeseburgers...

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    I didn't say you couldn't pull one, just that they are heavy for their size. Why? Because they were made with better (thicker) materials, so they were heavier.
    Several of our friends have them in Korea, and loaded an E1 would be very close to your weight limit. The new Somerset ones are probably lighter because they started using "lighter" (read "thinner") materials.

    I have a 12 foot Coachmen that comes in at 2,000 lbs. dry. I would go for a 12-foot box instead of a 10. It is significantly more space with a negligible weight difference.

    A gently used Jayco/Fleetwood/Starcraft/Coleman trailer would be my choice.
     
  15. rsm8

    rsm8 New Member

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    We live in CA and do a lot of camping along the coast between San Diego and Santa Barbara. We have owned three popups and upgraded after a couple of years after thinking we had the right one. We started with a 95 Coleman with a 10' box. We upgraded quickly to a 2002 Coleman Sun Valley which offers a lot of room and storage while still being light and easily towable (with a minivan at the time). We again realized after a few years we wanted a bath/shower and nicer kitchen. So we sold the Sun Valley and purchased a Fleetwood Arcadia. This is one awesome popup. It weighs a bit more than you are looking for but the amenities are quite nice. Depending on our length of stay the weight of the trailer ready to go is between 3000 and 3300 lbs. We now tow with a Suburban or Ram 1500 so weight is not really an issue but the room and quality of build is top notch. Now to answer your question choose the largest popup you can afford and tow. It won't take you long to realize what a great way to camp your popup offers and you'll be happy you picked a larger camping vehicle. I have a preference for Coleman/Fleetwood and I've seen some excellent models mentioned here. Bayside, Niagra, and don't forget Utah and Sun Valley. The larger and more equipped you purchase now the longer you'll be able to go before you upgrade...and you surely will want to.
     
  16. supton

    supton New Member

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    Good reading. I find myself in a similar boat. We have a small pup, that I bought last year; we finally used this year, and my wife and I were both in agreement afterwards: while we'd like a travel trailer we did like the pup. But the 8' box was way too small for us. Wifey liked the look of one with a slideout, we both want a/c but wifey says she isn't interested in the potty. I can live with that, but reading some of the posts here make me wonder, since we do have both a son and a daughter. My guess: they won't want the potty either, at some point the privacy issue would win out.

    Lots of shopping at hand... Will hold onto the one I have now until we find the next one.
     

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