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Old 08-26-2012, 12:12 PM   #1
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Location: Washington State, Washington
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19
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Question for families with kids!

Hi everyone...we just secured a winter completion date for a new Escape and are very excited. Even though my husband and I have two children (ages 5 and 7) I feel pretty comfortable ordering a 17b...we are used to being on small boats and car camping and don't feel we need a big interior space, especially since our huge preference is to outside exploring and not hanging out inside the trailer. I homeschool my children and want to take them on many "field trips", so I specifically want a trailer that is small, not-intimidating, and easy to tow, as we will be sans Daddy on many of these trips. Really, I want a space where our belongings can be organized, we can sleep comfortably, escape bad weather, and feel safely enclosed in bear country, etc.

HOWEVER...my husband is now feeling that, as our children grow, we might really appreciate the greater space and storage of a 19. We would modify it with a U-shaped dinette in the rear for greater versatility in two "living" areas. So I am seeking any thoughts or feedback, particularly from Escape 17 or 19 owners with children as we ponder this choice. I have toured both a 17b and 19 and I think they are both absolutely fantastic.

I would sure appreciate any thoughts! Thank you so much!
Lisa
Washington State
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Old 08-26-2012, 12:36 PM   #2
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Re: Question for families with kids!

If the 19 is in your budget then go for it. You'll soon need the space. Tenting doesn't sound like an option in bear country.
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Old 08-26-2012, 02:00 PM   #3
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Re: Question for families with kids!

It sounds like either size would work for you so it comes down to what your preferences ultimately are. We got our Escape when our kids were 2 & 4 yrs old. We were already considering the 17b but then heard news of the new 19 about to come out. Since our tow vehicle is rated for 5000 lbs we could easily tow either so that wasn't a constraint for us. Either size would have met our needs so the decision came down to our preferences.

The size of the 17b would've been sufficient especially with the gaucho bunk option for when the kids grew older (bigger). Things that were particularly appealing to us about the 17b when compared to the 19 were that with the slightly smaller & lighter trailer, gas mileage would be slightly better & it would be less strain on the tow vehicle. It would also require less space in our driveway.

However, we opted for the 19 for several reasons: to get the extra width which enables 4 people a little extra room to pass each other when necessary, to get the extra height which was enough for me to not have to bend my head when in the bathroom, & the larger dinette/front bed. Although we always prefer to cook & eat outside, there have been several times when we've camping in sub-freezing temps or periods of long rain that have confined us to cooking & eating inside the trailer where the extra space was appreciated. The permanent queen bed also appealed to us. We also felt that the little bit of extra space would be nice as the kids grew. However, we consider the extra space as well as the queen bed a luxury more than a necessity. As for storage space, the 19 is more than enough for us but I'm confident that the 17 would've been plenty sufficient too.

Our kids are now 5 & 7. We still feel that the 19 is the perfect size & layout for us. I am confident that we wouldn't have gone any bigger even if the future Escape 21 were available when we made our purchase.

Good luck with your decision - Escape makes great products & I'm confident that you'll be happy with whichever size you ultimately choose.



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Old 08-26-2012, 02:46 PM   #4
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Re: Question for families with kids!

We are a family of three, our daugter is 10 and we just got our 19 ft, we feel it is great for us, my wife and I love our queen bed in the rear, and our Daughter has been enjoying having the front dinnette as her bed, we put a memory foam mattress on top of the cushions and as well as a memory foam top on the queen. We don't miss having the dinnette at all, we figure that if we are stuck in extremely bad weather we can put the dinnette up for the day, we probably wouldn't bother though. Probably if the weather was that horrible we would get in the truck and go do something else. We just spent 8 days on the way home from picking up the trailer and were very comfortable.
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Old 08-26-2012, 03:56 PM   #5
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Re: Question for families with kids!

We got the 17B with goucho bunks before the 19 came out, but I think I would have ordered the 17B anyway.

I, and the kids, like the bunk beds. One likes to read and one goes to bed earlier so they both have their own lighted bed area to do as they please. One's a sleep kicker so keeping them apart gets a better night sleep for each. Ones a boy and the other a girl and they'll hit puberty soon so sharing a bed would be awkward; girls have cooties.

I like the dinette in the back of the 17B, that is usually the best view, so putting one in a 19 would be good for us. I don't mind taking down the bed every day but the extra size of the 19 bed would be good for sleeping, no doubt about that. Often the girls sleep on the big bed and I get the lower bunk. I like it; nice, dark and quiet.

I like the single axel of the 17B. It is may be more difficult to back then the 19 but it is also more manueverable to get into small campsites, and I can use a Bal Leveler rather than blocks for leveling. I hand pull the trailer through a 180 degree pivot turn at home when I park, couldn't do that with a 19.

For me the bunk beds are the definitive advantage of the 17B for the four of us. A family of three wouldn't need the bunks so it it may be ironic that if we had one kid, we would have thought about a bigger trailer, if it had been available in 2006.

I like minimal solutions. For me the glass isn't have full or half empty, it is twice as big as it needs to be.

If your kids are the same sex and sleep compatble, the 19 would be a fine choice. If that is not the case, the 17B with bunks may be better. It is tight to have more than 2 people up and around inside the 17B. Never been in a 19, but the extra 4 inches may make a big difference.

Best of luck, glad to see more families in fiberglass.

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Old 08-26-2012, 05:02 PM   #6
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Re: Question for families with kids!

We actually find there is more floor space and room for people to get around each other than in our old trailer that was 25 ft. When we picked up our 19ft we checked out all the others at the factory of course, we did find there was definatly less room in the 17 ft. to get around each other. the extra width of the 19ft is nice although it tucks in nicely behind a full size truck i would imagine on a narower tow vehicle you would notice more of a difference with the extra width.
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Old 08-26-2012, 05:34 PM   #7
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Re: Question for families with kids!

We have an adult child that travels with us. Having a third person was the sole reason for going to a 19. Wanting a new unit, we considered the Casita 17ís; we were down to a 5th wheel as an only choice until the 19 came out. The 19 has made life very pleasant, with three people moving and living in a small area. I have been inside a 17 but not travelled in one so I cannot make that comparison

I think a consideration should be storage and open space, children of that age or any age for that matter go through a lot of clothes, bigger kids may use fewer clothes but those clothes take up more space. In addition, you need the space for entertainment items and rainy day activities that Texasescapees mention. If you plan to travel in colder weather the clothes storage requirements can double.

It is very hard to increase storage; the unit must have it on delivery.

I would also opt for the tongue storage option, simply to have a place to move as much stuff outside the unit and increase interior space and access.

Another consideration is the table and conversion to a bed. If we are in one spot for a long time it is common to leave the front table made up as a bed, however bad weather or travelling means we want it as a table. While travelling it is not uncommon to stop for a noon lunch or even dinner and then resume traveling, often we want a table at this time either due to weather, convenience or darkness.

We have found the table, as stock delivered, to be a very difficult conversion bed to table. You will be facing this just as we have, and with a much greater frequency than a single or pair of travelers would face. I would recommend putting some effort into getting Reese to redesign the table for you. For frequent users it needs to be on a multiple hinge system without the dual pipes holding the table steady. I have seen a design on another website that maybe a workable solution, here are some links to some solutions I have seen.

http://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/f...tte-45646.html

http://escapeforum.org/index.php?topic=2054.0

http://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/f...ked-46584.html

http://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/f...r-51170-4.html

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Old 08-27-2012, 11:27 PM   #8
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Re: Question for families with kids!

We spend over thirty days a year in our 17B with our eight and ten year old boys, plus our German Shepherd Dog. We make it work, and love it. We put the boys clothes in flexible plastic containers under the lower bunk. My wife and I each get one cupboard for clothes, and we keep a laundry bag under the bed. We leave the rear bed down most of the time, and eat our meals outside. Actually, we spend almost all of our time outside, coming in only to sleep. We have one of those four-legged sun shades that we put over our fire/picnic table when it rains. In bad weather, or when winter camping we occasionally all cram onto the bed and watch a movie. When we need the table, it is not too hard to convert the bed. We just had the tongue box added on, and LOVE it! We try to be as minimalist as possible, reducing weight etc., so I don't want to to have the extra weight of the 19. I also love being able to pull a u-turn when I need to, and that my regular mirrors give me great rear visibility. Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity! (Thoreau)
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Old 08-28-2012, 09:03 AM   #9
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Re: Question for families with kids!

I will second the simplicity theme, all of our family and friends asked how we could go from a 25 ft trailer to a 19 ft, its easy just don't bring all the crap that you don't need or ever use. I find we have all this space in our 19 ft and certainly have everything we need. It is very true that what ever size Escape you have you make yourself comfortable and find solutions.
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Old 09-02-2012, 11:29 PM   #10
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Re: Question for families with kids!

Hello everyone,
I just wanted to say thanks so much for all the thoughtful responses you gave me...they were really helpful! We're super excited about getting our new trailer...we decided to go with the 19...and I'm sure I'll have more questions as we go along!
Thanks again,
Lisa
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