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Old 04-19-2014, 09:10 PM   #1
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Time to Unfold

We have enjoyed a Chalet A-frame almost 10 years and have put tens of thousands of kilometers on it but we're looking at something to address its shortcomings.

The Chalet tows very nicely, sets up quickly, is equipped with a cassette toilet and shower but by design it lacks any overhead storage space and the dining area has to be converted to a bed every night. As well the seams between the folding panels don't always seal properly letting in cold and bugs. High wind can present a serious problem to opening and closing the unit.

I like the advantages of a fiberglass trailer and have looked at Casitas and Scamps but the Escape 17B seems to most closely match what we are looking for. It's not much bigger than the 16' Chalet but has a permanent bed option and considerably more storage.

At this point the tongue weight of a fully outfitted 17B Escape with 2 propane tanks and the apparent lack of kitchen counter space are my concerns. Seeing weight equalizing hitches on the options list doesn't allay the former. One of the photos appears to show a folding counter extension?

I am going to hang out and read the posts here before making a commitment.

Bill
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Old 04-19-2014, 09:27 PM   #2
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Location: North Vancouver, British Columbia
Trailer: 2009 Escape 17B - "Toad". '08 Toyota RAV4 V6
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The tongue weight is what it is. I run about 320#.
Counter space is limited, even with the counter extension. You have to put stuff away. But, we do a limited amount of cooking inside. Mainly just making coffee in the morning and sometimes using a burner to heat wieners and beans. Our kitchen is mainly the picnic table outside, with portable BBQ and a couple butane burners ( one is usually enough ).
If you convert the rear bed to a dinette daily, you have a large table to work with in addition to the counter extension. We don't.
We leave the counter extension in the up position and sleep with our feet at that end.
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Old 04-19-2014, 09:36 PM   #3
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Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Sun City West,AZ / Adirondacks, New York
Trailer: Former class c .. Deciding on 17B
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Welcome Bill,

I cannot help you with specs on the Escape. I too browsed at the Casita and Scamp but have been nothing more than impressed with the Escape.

I have gained a wealth of information from other members here who are always willing to assist.

So gather your questions, fire away, sit back relax and your answers will appear!
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Old 04-19-2014, 09:46 PM   #4
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Thanks for the quick reply. Is that with dual tanks?

We are more travellers than campers. We take extended trips and do all our food preparation and most of our dining inside. We currently have a 3 burner stove and use all three of them for most main meals. We also have what is called an extended galley which gives us several feet of counter space for food preparation.

Not converting the bed to a table to a bed... is the number one reason we are 'upgrading'.
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Old 04-19-2014, 09:48 PM   #5
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Thanks. I belong to a Chalet group that is also very supportive and informative. I joined it a year or so before I bought my Chalet. As they say, it's like deja vu all over again.
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Old 04-19-2014, 09:53 PM   #6
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Tongue weight is dual propane. Not sure it makes much difference since you want to maintain 12 to 15 per cent of the trailer weight, which is about 312#.

We eat inside at the two-person front dinette, when not eating outside. Don't know how one would create more counter space without leaving out the bath/shower, the fridge, the double bed...
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Old 04-19-2014, 10:54 PM   #7
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I measure my loaded weight, both trailer & tongue at the start of each trip. With full dual propane tanks, and 1/3 fresh water, I was at 3010 lbs & 348 tongue weight. I do have the front storage box with about 50 lbs of stuff in it & a power jack.

As to kitchen space, I haven't had a problem cooking for one, however I have to admit I do most of mine outside the trailer on a Coleman combined stove/grill.
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Old 04-19-2014, 10:56 PM   #8
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It crunches one side of the dinette, but I put a counter extension on the front window side of the "wardrobe closet" (cupboard for me.) Or, like the larger Escapes, one could put it on the door side, as long as there's not in and out traffic.
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Old 04-19-2014, 11:07 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vermilye View Post
I measure my loaded weight, both trailer & tongue at the start of each trip. With full dual propane tanks, and 1/3 fresh water, I was at 3010 lbs & 348 tongue weight. I do have the front storage box with about 50 lbs of stuff in it & a power jack.

As to kitchen space, I haven't had a problem cooking for one, however I have to admit I do most of mine outside the trailer on a Coleman combined stove/grill.
Ouch! Although most of that 50# of stuff will be in the tongue weight.

Why only 1/3 water? Is the storage tank fore or aft of the axle? My tank is aft and I keep it full as much as possible to reduce tongue weight. Also mine has no baffles so it sloshes around a lot if not full. Does the Escape tank have baffles?

And if I may ask yet another, where are the grey and blackwater tanks in respect to the axle?

Thank you.


Bill
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Old 04-19-2014, 11:22 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gbaglo View Post
... you want to maintain 12 to 15 per cent of the trailer weight, which is about 312#.
The typical rule of thumb for weight-carrying (not weight-distribution or "WD") hitch setups is 10% of trailer weight; Toyota (for instance) says specifically to run 9% to 11% of the trailer weight on the hitch. With WD, the recommended number is more typically 12% to 15%, but at 15% you're up into the levels more typical of gooseneck trailers.

I run 10% with my Boler (similar to an Escape, the length of an Escape 17', the width of an Escape 19', and between them in weight), and stability is fine.
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