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Old 09-11-2014, 04:02 AM   #1
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Looking at the 15-A

I've been itching to get on the road again, (after several years of working, etc.), and started looking a trailers. There are so many to select from, it’s taken some time to “disqualify” those that simply wouldn't fit an old man and his old 95# Aussie Shepherd. Trailers such at the T@B looked interesting until stepping inside and not being able to stand straight with little room to move for both Dog and me. I looked at A-Frame’s; good headroom in the center but little or none while sitting at either end. Tent trailers? I don't want to spend an evening setting up and a morning breaking camp. Finally I realized a smaller 15’ fiberglass trailer would be the way to go, plenty of room for my traveling companion and me and light enough for my TV, (a ’14 Outback), so long as I don’t race to the next rest stop. At our age, Dog and me, it’s time to slow down and smell the roses.

I've lurked around a few forums and gone on the sites of a few manufacturers, the Escape caught my attention, the friendliness and information gleamed from this forum is making a believer out of me. I’m starting to figure what I want and don’t want but this is just a start.

Things I don’t need, (or don’t think I need), are Awning, Range Hood or have it Microwave Ready. There was an awning on a truck camper I had years ago but I never used it and I had the microwave removed when I bought it.

A few things I do want, (or think I want): are a Water Heater, Dual 6V batteries, (most of my camping would be dry camping and I like that they put them on the rear bumper), additional LED Brake Lights, (always good to be seen in this damp and foggy NW weather), Surge Protector, AND, if ETI will do it; a U shaped rear dinette that can be used as a gaucho for Dog and me, a grey water tank, (they come with the “B” but I don’t want the shower insert, the added weight, and the reconfiguration), and a “Water Closet” for a porta potti in the front passenger side corner.

Come tomorrow all this could change, as I said it's just a start.
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Old 09-11-2014, 05:51 AM   #2
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Welcome to our Escape world, Pat....
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Old 09-11-2014, 08:45 AM   #3
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Welcome Pat, you are looking at one fine trailer there. The most efficient use of space of any of the Escape offerings.

Wow, you have a big Aussie. Our boy, though admittedly a big on the small size, is only 50 lbs. Great dogs though, eh?
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Old 09-11-2014, 09:38 AM   #4
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Welcome, Pat!

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Originally Posted by OneOleMan View Post
... Dual 6V batteries, (most of my camping would be dry camping and I like that they put them on the rear bumper
The batteries (or battery) of an Escape 17' are on the rear bumper, but the proportions of the 15' and 17' are quite different; the 17' would be too front-heavy with the batteries on the tongue. From the ETI website photos, the single 15' battery is on the tongue; are the dual batteries on the back?
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Old 09-11-2014, 10:02 AM   #5
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Welcome, Pat! I, too, spent a lot of time researching before deciding on the 15A. I absolutely love my trailer and wouldn't change anything on it. You're welcome to come up some time to see it.

Yes, my dual batteries are in the front--inside the storage box (see my album under my User CP for pics).
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Old 09-11-2014, 10:06 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
Welcome, Pat!


The batteries (or battery) of an Escape 17' are on the rear bumper, but the proportions of the 15' and 17' are quite different; the 17' would be too front-heavy with the batteries on the tongue. From the ETI website photos, the single 15' battery is on the tongue; are the dual batteries on the back?
Dual batteries on our 15 are in the box up front. Jim and Robin don't have a box but their's are also up front. I believe this contributes to the high tongue weight we experience.
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Old 09-11-2014, 12:44 PM   #7
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Welcome Pat, you are looking at one fine trailer there. The most efficient use of space of any of the Escape offerings.

Wow, you have a big Aussie. Our boy, though admittedly a big on the small size, is only 50 lbs. Great dogs though, eh?
Yes Jim he is a big boy, a 10 year old Aussie on steroids. I found him at a shelter last February and couldn't be happier, we were meant for each other; both of us old and hearing impaired.
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Old 09-11-2014, 12:49 PM   #8
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Welcome, Pat!


The batteries (or battery) of an Escape 17' are on the rear bumper, but the proportions of the 15' and 17' are quite different; the 17' would be too front-heavy with the batteries on the tongue. From the ETI website photos, the single 15' battery is on the tongue; are the dual batteries on the back?
Under the "Options" tab for the 15-A it shows the dual batteries on the rear. It'll be one of the things to clarify with ETI.
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Old 09-11-2014, 12:58 PM   #9
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I was expecting the batteries (2x6 volt) to be on the rear bumper of our 15A but when we picked it up they were installed in the optional front storage box. Not sure why as I never asked although would have liked to have had more room in the box.
Balancing the weight on the 15 is a tricky thing to do because of the axle location (according to Reace). It is near the center of the trailer and placement of objects in the trailer can dramatically effect the balance and therefore tongue weight. For that reason I think ETI likes to put the batteries on the front to keep more weight there.
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Old 09-11-2014, 01:28 PM   #10
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Balancing the weight on the 15 is a tricky thing to do because of the axle location (according to Reace). It is near the center of the trailer and placement of objects in the trailer can dramatically effect the balance and therefore tongue weight. For that reason I think ETI likes to put the batteries on the front to keep more weight there.
Yes.
The 15-foot shell design (originally as a Trillium 4500 or Surfside) is basically a 13-foot (Trillium 1300) with the added length mostly behind the axle, so the axle is closer to the middle; the front kitchen keeps the balance appropriately forward in the "B" plan (which I think was common in older variations of this from other manufacturers).
The 17-foot design (the original Escape) is basically the 15-foot design with all of the added length ahead of the axle, so the axle is relatively rearward; the tongue weight tends to be too high unless the batteries are placed on the back, so all Escape 17' batteries are on the rear bumper.

The rear overhang of the Escape 15' is relatively large for the body length, so moving a battery - or two - from one extreme end to the other would have a large effect.

Quote:
Originally Posted by techfan View Post
Dual batteries on our 15 are in the box up front. Jim and Robin don't have a box but their's are also up front. I believe this contributes to the high tongue weight we experience.
Sorry, but I don't recall... is your 15' a 15A or 15B?
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Old 09-11-2014, 01:36 PM   #11
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Can you put a box on the 15? If so, that would be very handy.
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Old 09-11-2014, 01:46 PM   #12
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sounds great i am buying my 17b for my dog Guinness so we can travel together and leave the horses at home! Maybe when i retire i will want a bigger trailer but maybe this smaller trailer will suit me fine.
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Old 09-11-2014, 01:50 PM   #13
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Can you put a box on the 15? If so, that would be very handy.
It is listed as a $700 option. (And I think it is a GREAT deal.)
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Old 09-11-2014, 01:55 PM   #14
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With a small trailer, the box would be a great addition.
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Old 09-11-2014, 02:35 PM   #15
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Can you put a box on the 15? If so, that would be very handy.
Answering a number of questions:

Both ours and Jim/Robin's are 15B's. Karen in Bellingham has a 15a. We couldn't have a 15 without the box and all of our stuff. See our website for lots of 15 pictures with the box. Our signature line and profile show 15b with our tow vehicle.
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Old 09-11-2014, 06:10 PM   #16
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Dual batteries on our 15 are in the box up front...
... I believe this contributes to the high tongue weight we experience.
Quote:
Originally Posted by techfan View Post
Both ours and Jim/Robin's are 15B's.
I think the front-kitchen layout is generally accepted to cause a more forward weight bias, due to the appliances and the stuff stored in the kitchen area. That's a good combination with the long-tailed 15-foot body, but maybe not so good with dual batteries on the tongue as well.

Pat is considering the 15A, like Karen's, with the more common side kitchen. Karen, how's the tongue weight with your dual-battery 15A?
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Old 09-11-2014, 06:19 PM   #17
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I think the front-kitchen layout is generally accepted to cause a more forward weight bias, due to the appliances and the stuff stored in the kitchen area. That's a good combination with the long-tailed 15-foot body, but maybe not so good with dual batteries on the tongue as well.

Pat is considering the 15A, like Karen's, with the more common side kitchen. Karen, how's the tongue weight with your dual-battery 15A?
Interested to hear what Karen says. Without the kitchen up front, and with no bathroom and black tank, and a smaller fridge, I would think the tongue weight would not be much of a problem in the 15A. Ours is manageable, by carrying 2/3 fresh tank.
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Old 09-11-2014, 06:33 PM   #18
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Quote:
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Karen, how's the tongue weight with your dual-battery 15A?
I have no clue and am too afraid to measure it (and don't have the means). When I took possession in Sumas, Dennis said not to worry if it didn't lower my stinger by more than two inches. It doesn't so I don't (much).

I don't keep any heavy weight items in the storage box (other than the batteries--and the dual propane up front) to help minimize the drop: two plastic side tables, two of those goofy chairs that I hate, my lantern, and rags. I know it's a bit too heavy but it is what it is.
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Old 09-11-2014, 06:52 PM   #19
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Pat,

I'll echo Karen on this -- you're more than welcome to check out our rig. We have a 15B with dual (front) batteries and dual LP tanks. Our tongue weight is between 310 and 350 pounds, depending on how much propane we're carrying and whether there's water in the fresh tank. It's a bit heavy, but man does it tow sweetly.
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Old 09-11-2014, 06:57 PM   #20
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Welcome!
One thing has me curious: why do you want a hot water heater if you don't want a bathroom, is it just to do dishes?
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