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Old 01-29-2024, 04:35 PM   #1
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Join Date: Nov 2023
Location: Amelia, Ohio
Trailer: 2021 Rockwood 2318G
Posts: 15
Considering purchasing an Escape

Hello. My wife and I are contemplating the purchase of an Escape 21 or possibly a 19 (most likely 21C). Also in the running are an Airstream Bambi 19CB (have researched that pretty thoroughly so know what I'm getting....biggest hesitation with the Airstream is the seam maintenance to prevent leaks and corrosion).

If the group doesn't mind, I have some questions about the Escape.

-- Do the captain's lights have integrated USB ports? The description on Escape's site and photos don't show them, but I saw an owner on youtube giving a walkthrough of his Escape and he mentioned that his lights have them.

-- Are the openings on the roof (e.g., fan, antenna, etc) sealed with Dicor or butyl tape? I saw a remark on the forums that theirs uses tape, but it's been a few years so I'm wondering about current construction methods.

-- If one orders their trailer as "lithium battery ready" is it safe to assume that the converter will also be fine charging a lead-acid battery? (My gut feeling is yes).

-- Does the trailer offer low point drains? (Again, I saw a post somewhere on here where someone said they were lacking...seems that that would make winterizing more difficult).

-- How difficult has it been for you to obtain warranty service? I live much too far from the factory so any service would have to be performed locally. My salesman indicated that I could arrange service: "Our aftersales team work at finding a place near where you live that can do the warranty work for us. If you have a place in mind, we can always coordinate with them. When it comes to big repairs or fiberglass repairs, we typically get quotes first as some places charge exuberant amounts."

-- Has anyone used the custom delivery option? I would prefer to purchase and configure my own WDH, but the nearest drop off city is a 2.5 hour drive for me. It isn't really practical to attempt to configure the hitch when I pick up the trailer and am hesitant to drive that far without the WDH (and especially sway control). If I could drop it off closer (say within a half hour or so) of my home, then transporting home on just the ball should be a non-issue as I'd be able to keep the speeds around 50mph or less. Tow vehicle is a Chevrolet Colorado with towing package and V6. (7000 tow limit, 770 pound hitch limit, 1500 pound payload capacity).

-- Finally, I see that Karl has left and that the company is again for sale...but that seems to have been an improvement as far as customer service (again based on anecdotal reports in these forums)...but of course that could change with a new owner. Should I be concerned if I go ahead and purchase now or perhaps would it be more prudent to wait a few months to a year to see how it all pans out?

Thank you much!
Craig (I've already looked at one (21C) in person and the owners love theirs, but they purchased it in 2018,,,,). Very nice inside and theirs has been problem free according to their reports.

Thank you
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Old 01-29-2024, 05:18 PM   #2
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Location: Overbrook, Kansas
Trailer: 2021 E19 (Padawan)
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My 2021 E19 does not have captainís lights with integrated USB. Some newer trailers do. Your best bet is to ask ETI directly.

I donít remember how mine are sealed. They donít leak. Probably Dicor; once again, ETI will tell you if you ask.

ETI has used a WFCO power centers in the past which will charge lead acid. Once again, check current specs with ETI.

There is a fresh tank drain. There are drainage openings for the trailer. I do not have a plumbing low point drain, but winterizing is very easy with air or antifreeze given ETIís plumbing set up.

Iíve needed manufacture service on the windows and Maxx fan, but not any service on parts manufactured by ETI. Any mobile tech wonít care the trailer brand if you need support directly from ETI.

We had ours delivered to Kansa City. It was problem free.

I picked up with my Ď21 Ford Ranger - similar to your Colorado. I towed home through KC and about 90 miles home. Any loose stuff you need with you throw in the front of the trailer, keep your speed down, and check the lug nuts at the early recommended intervals. I had no trouble coming home. I do have an Equalizer from a previous trailer I set up after I got it home. Sway is generally not enough tongue weight and too much speed. You wonít have anything in the back of the trailer, so be prudent, and you should be fine. I have a 3/4 ton also, but a mid size is quite capable for these trailers.

You should purchase the trailer when it works for you. ETI seems to be chugging right along.
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Old 01-29-2024, 06:20 PM   #3
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Trailer: 2023 E19
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I can offer comment on a few questions:

Quote:
Originally Posted by caheaton View Post
-- Do the captain's lights have integrated USB ports? The description on Escape's site and photos don't show them, but I saw an owner on youtube giving a walkthrough of his Escape and he mentioned that his lights have them.
The captain's lights in my 2023 are all equipped with USB-A outlets, rated for 2A max...if I recall correctly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by caheaton View Post
-- If one orders their trailer as "lithium battery ready" is it safe to assume that the converter will also be fine charging a lead-acid battery? (My gut feeling is yes).
I ordered my trailer both as lithium ready and with 2x6V LA batteries. The intent was to make future lithium conversion as painless as possible. The newest standard WFCO converter used by ETI will supposedly autodetect the battery type. Mine has no problem charging LA batteries. You will need to manually adjust the settings for the Victron DC-DC charger and solar charge controller (if so equipped) to match the battery type installed. If you order the trailer with a LA battery option, it should arrive with the chargers properly configured for LA.

Quote:
Originally Posted by caheaton View Post
-- Does the trailer offer low point drains? (Again, I saw a post somewhere on here where someone said they were lacking...seems that that would make winterizing more difficult).
No low-point drains, but I found it easy to winterize with a small portable 12V compressor. ETI has a very good winterization video posted on their YouTube channel.

Quote:
Originally Posted by caheaton View Post
-- How difficult has it been for you to obtain warranty service? I live much too far from the factory so any service would have to be performed locally. My salesman indicated that I could arrange service: "Our aftersales team work at finding a place near where you live that can do the warranty work for us. If you have a place in mind, we can always coordinate with them. When it comes to big repairs or fiberglass repairs, we typically get quotes first as some places charge exuberant amounts."
I am in the process of having a minor warranty repair completed right now. I used a local independent shop that has some experience servicing ETI trailers. I've had no issues at all coordinating the work with ETI after-sales staff. They have been very communicative.

Quote:
Originally Posted by caheaton View Post
-- Has anyone used the custom delivery option? I would prefer to purchase and configure my own WDH, but the nearest drop off city is a 2.5 hour drive for me. It isn't really practical to attempt to configure the hitch when I pick up the trailer and am hesitant to drive that far without the WDH (and especially sway control). If I could drop it off closer (say within a half hour or so) of my home, then transporting home on just the ball should be a non-issue as I'd be able to keep the speeds around 50mph or less. Tow vehicle is a Chevrolet Colorado with towing package and V6. (7000 tow limit, 770 pound hitch limit, 1500 pound payload capacity).
FWIW, I tow with a mid-size truck with similar capacities and ordered the Fastway E2 hitch supplied by ETI. It was set up perfectly from the factory, based on the receiver height info I provided. I towed it about 2000kms since taking delivery, including some challenging conditions. I've never once felt like the tail was wagging the dog. I personally would not have been comfortable without a WD hitch...YMMV.

Quote:
Originally Posted by caheaton View Post
-- Finally, I see that Karl has left and that the company is again for sale...but that seems to have been an improvement as far as customer service (again based on anecdotal reports in these forums)...but of course that could change with a new owner. Should I be concerned if I go ahead and purchase now or perhaps would it be more prudent to wait a few months to a year to see how it all pans out?
ETI has had the same private equity ownership since 2018. I think it has always been their intention to grow the business and sell whenever they feel that they have maximized their investment. Depending on the perceived growth potential, they could sell in a few months...or hold on to it for a few more years.
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Old 01-29-2024, 06:38 PM   #4
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Trailer: 2023 ESCAPE 5.0 TA
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I purchased a new 2023 Escape 5.0 TA from ETI.

All of the captain lights have USB charging capability.

I ordered my 5.0 with two lead-acid batteries without the solar package. A couple of months ago I was doing research to replace the lead-acid batteries with lithium. One of several issues/ concerns, was about the power converter charging compatibility. I discovered that the WFCO Power Converter with Distribution Panel (Model # WF8955LIS-WAGO) which was installed in my 5.0 has a tiny toggle switch that can set the power converter to either lead-acid battery setting (13.6 VDC, 55A) or lithium battery setting (LI charging mode setting 14.6 VDC, 50A).

My 5.0 is setup to easily winterize using RV antifreeze; a hose with bypass valves exists which enables antifreeze to be drawn from its one-gallon container. There are no low-point drains.

Concerning warranty service, I had an issue with my Norcold refrigerator. ETI arranged and paid for an authorized Norcold technician to come to my house.
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Old 01-29-2024, 06:44 PM   #5
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My 2013 19 has a handy low point drain spiggot. I assume this was standard back then.
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Old 01-29-2024, 07:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
If you order the trailer with a LA battery option, it should arrive with the chargers properly configured for LA.
I would just add this advice for a new purchaser: trust, but verify.
And the answer to the last question is: no, you should not wait. Order now, and soon commence enjoying your new Escape!
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Old 01-29-2024, 07:28 PM   #7
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Location: Somewhere, Maryland
Trailer: 2022 5.0TA
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Quote:
-- Do the captain's lights have integrated USB ports?
Yes. All of ours do.

Quote:
-- If one orders their trailer as "lithium battery ready" is it safe to assume that the converter will also be fine charging a lead-acid battery?
Most likely yes. Our 2022 5.0 was ordered "lithium ready". It came with a single 12v marine battery. An Interstate Deep Cycle 88AH Group 27M battery. I believe *some* battery is required to operate emergency brakes. Once I installed our lithiums I gave the lead acid battery to a friend for his boat.

It also came with the WFCO WF-8955-AD-WAGO. This version "recognizes lithium-ion and lead acid battery chemistries and automatically adjusts the charging profile to match the battery type".
https://www.wfcotech.com/shop/power-...ower-center-2/

Quote:
-- Does the trailer offer low point drains?
As others have stated there's a drain at the bottom of the fresh tank. I use this frequently between trips and when winterizing. There are also small drain/weep holes at various low points in underside of the fiberglass shell just in case there's a more substantial liquid mishap (ugh).

Quote:
-- Has anyone used the custom delivery option?
Can't answer this question directly but we had our 5.0 delivered to the official Baltimore area drop-off. The trailer driver and the folks at the drop-off spot were super friendly, helpful, and patient. Very low stress...and we were/are 1st time rv owners.
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Old 01-29-2024, 08:53 PM   #8
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Location: NKY, Kentucky
Trailer: , Bigfoot 25B25RT, previously 2019 Escape 21, and Castia sd17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caheaton View Post
Hello. My wife and I are contemplating the purchase of an Escape 21 or possibly a 19 (most likely 21C). Also in the running are an Airstream Bambi 19CB (have researched that pretty thoroughly so know what I'm getting....biggest hesitation with the Airstream is the seam maintenance to prevent leaks and corrosion).

If the group doesn't mind, I have some questions about the Escape.

-- Do the captain's lights have integrated USB ports? The description on Escape's site and photos don't show them, but I saw an owner on youtube giving a walkthrough of his Escape and he mentioned that his lights have them.

-- Are the openings on the roof (e.g., fan, antenna, etc) sealed with Dicor or butyl tape? I saw a remark on the forums that theirs uses tape, but it's been a few years so I'm wondering about current construction methods.

-- If one orders their trailer as "lithium battery ready" is it safe to assume that the converter will also be fine charging a lead-acid battery? (My gut feeling is yes).

-- Does the trailer offer low point drains? (Again, I saw a post somewhere on here where someone said they were lacking...seems that that would make winterizing more difficult).

-- How difficult has it been for you to obtain warranty service? I live much too far from the factory so any service would have to be performed locally. My salesman indicated that I could arrange service: "Our aftersales team work at finding a place near where you live that can do the warranty work for us. If you have a place in mind, we can always coordinate with them. When it comes to big repairs or fiberglass repairs, we typically get quotes first as some places charge exuberant amounts."

-- Has anyone used the custom delivery option? I would prefer to purchase and configure my own WDH, but the nearest drop off city is a 2.5 hour drive for me. It isn't really practical to attempt to configure the hitch when I pick up the trailer and am hesitant to drive that far without the WDH (and especially sway control). If I could drop it off closer (say within a half hour or so) of my home, then transporting home on just the ball should be a non-issue as I'd be able to keep the speeds around 50mph or less. Tow vehicle is a Chevrolet Colorado with towing package and V6. (7000 tow limit, 770 pound hitch limit, 1500 pound payload capacity).

-- Finally, I see that Karl has left and that the company is again for sale...but that seems to have been an improvement as far as customer service (again based on anecdotal reports in these forums)...but of course that could change with a new owner. Should I be concerned if I go ahead and purchase now or perhaps would it be more prudent to wait a few months to a year to see how it all pans out?

Thank you much!
Craig (I've already looked at one (21C) in person and the owners love theirs, but they purchased it in 2018,,,,). Very nice inside and theirs has been problem free according to their reports.

Thank you
I see you are in Amelia Ohio, or the greater Cincinnati area, as am I. There are quite a few Escapes in this area. The question of Warranty work is a good one, my answer would be are you handy? If so, Escape will send you any parts that have failed during the first two years. When I ordered my previous 2019 21C it was well built and mostly trouble free. The only issues were plumbing related, a leaky outside faucet and a water pump strainer. Our current Bigfoot 25rt, which is also made in British Columbia had a stove recall and the RV dealer on rt32, Holman motors made the repair. The process would be the same on an Escape. Good luck in whatever you decide.
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Old 01-29-2024, 09:25 PM   #9
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Trailer: 2023 5.0 TA
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Caheaton welcome to the form, you will find a lot of information on the site.

My recommendation on your questions about products and sealants should be asked of ETI directly. Schedule a phone conference with Linda and have your list of questions. If she doesnít have the answers right away she will get it for you. Sometimes product change do to supply train issues or methods of assembly to make a better trailer.
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Old 01-30-2024, 11:01 AM   #10
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Join Date: Apr 2020
Location: Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Trailer: 2024 Escape 23
Posts: 8
Hi everyone, I have only posted here a few times but I read often. Still have my 2003 Casita but I just signed a build sheet for an Escape 23 so I may be posting more.

For caheaton (OP), I affirm occer's recommendation. Start a conversation with Linda (aka Escape Sales), she is very helpful and can give you a lot of information that isn't on the website. She told me I can now get delivery right to my house for the same flat rate, and I think this is true for all of USA and Canada.

For anyone considering a 23, Escape is gradually adding customization options. I'm getting a flush mount oven/stove and even more rooftop solar (total 800W) with a May 2024 completion date. Linda can tell you what is available now and a pretty good guess at what else may be coming soon.

Best wishes to all on your journeys!
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Old 01-30-2024, 07:36 PM   #11
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Trailer: 2016 Escape 19 Chevy 2012 Express 3500 Van
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Your intentions, please.

What are you intentions for using all that solar input you'll be acquiring?
I'm just curious.

bon voyage,
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Old 01-30-2024, 09:14 PM   #12
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Trailer: 2022 21C + 2021 F-150 PowerBoost 4x4
Posts: 504
Hi, caheaton. Just wanted to say hello to another (potential) Escape owner here in the Cincinnati area. Weíre in Cold Spring, Kentucky near Northern Kentucky University. Weíve camped and kayaked at East Fork Lake close to you in Amelia.

We made the trek out to Sumas, Washington in June of 2022 to pick up our 21C. Like the other owners you met, we are very happy with our trailer. Weíve had virtually no trouble with ours - the only glitch so far being a faulty sail switch on the furnace, which is an easy fix (these things are notorious for failing on this model furnace, so recommend you have a spare on hand).

I see most of your questions have been answered by the helpful folks on this board, but I have a couple responses for you:

Quote:
Originally Posted by caheaton View Post
-- Are the openings on the roof (e.g., fan, antenna, etc) sealed with Dicor or butyl tape?
I was just on a ladder today checking the vent over the bathroom, and roof openings on our 21C are sealed with Dicor.

Quote:
Originally Posted by caheaton View Post
-- Finally, I see that Karl has left and that the company is again for sale...but that seems to have been an improvement as far as customer service (again based on anecdotal reports in these forums)...but of course that could change with a new owner. Should I be concerned if I go ahead and purchase now or perhaps would it be more prudent to wait a few months to a year to see how it all pans out?
I donít recall seeing mention on this board about any near term plans to sell ETI. There was intrigue about a job posting for Karlís successor that included verbiage related to positioning the company for future sale. I would guess this is standard for an outfit owned by venture capitalists.

Anyway, hope that helps. Good luck in your trailer search!
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Old 01-31-2024, 12:06 PM   #13
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Trailer: 2024 Escape 23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HABBERDABBER View Post
What are you intentions for using all that solar input you'll be acquiring?
I'm just curious.
Fresh brewed coffee for everyone in the campground? Two months of boondocking in a forest?

It may be more than we will ever need, but, easier to add now than later, and we won't ever again pay extra for electric hookup.
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Old 01-31-2024, 06:09 PM   #14
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Trailer: 1999 Coleman Taos pop-up (Sold), 2024 Escape 5.0 on order
Posts: 77
Quote:
Originally Posted by leecallahan View Post
I purchased a new 2023 Escape 5.0 TA from ETI.

I ordered my 5.0 with two lead-acid batteries without the solar package. A couple of months ago I was doing research to replace the lead-acid batteries with lithium. One of several issues/ concerns, was about the power converter charging compatibility. I discovered that the WFCO Power Converter with Distribution Panel (Model # WF8955LIS-WAGO) which was installed in my 5.0 has a tiny toggle switch that can set the power converter to either lead-acid battery setting (13.6 VDC, 55A) or lithium battery setting (LI charging mode setting 14.6 VDC, 50A).
Timothy,
Just curious, did you order your 5.0 with the "Lithium Ready" package? We just purchased a 5.0 and will be picking it up in a few weeks. Got the standard, single lead-acid battery without the Lithium-Ready option, and am planning to do my own lithium upgrade. I assumed I'd need to upgrade the power converter, but now I'm wondering if they installed the same, lithium compatible converter they put in your 5.0.
Jim
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Old 02-01-2024, 08:00 PM   #15
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see next reply
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Old 02-01-2024, 08:03 PM   #16
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Trailer: 2023 ESCAPE 5.0 TA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjdeluca View Post
Timothy,
Just curious, did you order your 5.0 with the "Lithium Ready" package? We just purchased a 5.0 and will be picking it up in a few weeks. Got the standard, single lead-acid battery without the Lithium-Ready option, and am planning to do my own lithium upgrade. I assumed I'd need to upgrade the power converter, but now I'm wondering if they installed the same, lithium compatible converter they put in your 5.0.
Jim
I ordered my 5.0 with two lead-acid batteries. I did not order the solar package with lithium batteries and the inverter. I am considering changing my lead-acid batteries to lithium batteries and fortunately discovered that the power converter can be manually set to either lead-acid battery charging mode or to lithium battery charging mode. The power converter installed on my 5.0 does not automatically adjust charging modes, one must physically move the tiny toggle switch. I did not mention in my original reply that ETI had set the charging mode (accidentally) to lithium battery charging mode; I did have communications with ETI concerning the matter. After discovering the higher charging rate, I checked the lead-acid battery cells which were actively cooking and had to add distilled water to increase fluids back to the proper level. My ETI installed See Level II showed battery voltage as 13.7V; after changing the power converter charging mode to lead acid battery, the See Level II now shows the battery voltage as 13.3V.

Recommend that you identify your specific power converter model number and download the manual (ETI did not provide the manual) from the manufacturer to verify. This is the link for my model # https://www.wfcotech.com/shop/power-centers/wf-8955lis/
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Old 02-02-2024, 12:39 PM   #17
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Trailer: 2021 Rockwood 2318G
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I just wanted to say thank you to everyone for the wealth of information in your answers. My salesman confirmed that I can have it delivered anywhere the truck is able to fit...not sure about in front of our house, but there's a walmart just minutes away that could probably serve as a drop off location :-) .

Good to hear about the inverter...will likely just go ahead and stick with the standard unit and either switch it manually when (or even if) I decide to go with lithium.

As for USB on the lights, that would be nice, but my wife put it this way "why do you need so many USB outlets...are you too lazy to walk over to the included outlet?" LOL. She has a point, not to mention that it's easy to just plug an adapter into the 110 outlets. I suspect the existing standard outlets and lights should suffice for us. Especially after seeing one in person...they bought the extra lights but never use them...the included lights were sufficient. The only extra USB I'd likely get would be outside....mainly to make it easier to power my telescope mount and astro camera gear.

And thank you for the tip about Holman. That's very reassuring, since they're so close by. They actually have a stick built (Wildwood FSX 161QK) that was tempting me...(love the floorplan, (especially the separate bedroom), and the price), but am strongly leaning towards Escape due to the lower maintenance. When it comes time for resale, it's pretty much a wash...assuming the stick trailer loses 50% of purchase price at time of sale and the Escape I'm guessing 10% over a 10 year time frame. Combine that with the lower maintenance on the Escape and the Escape wins. (Calculation also assumed the extra money saved on the FSX was left in a bond or CD earning some interest over that 10 year period...).

One thing I have found odd...whenever I try to add the solar ready option (mainly for the plug for adding my own solar panel, which I have...a 180 watt briefcase panel), I'm required to delete the A/C. Very strange and something I may ask about when it comes time to assemble the build list...it would be nice to order just the solar outlet at the back only. If they can't, then it wouldn't be hard to add one. I'd likely add it to the storage door to avoid drilling any holes into the main body.

Thanks again for all the help and advice!
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Old 02-02-2024, 12:59 PM   #18
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Trailer: 2023 E19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caheaton View Post
As for USB on the lights, that would be nice, but my wife put it this way "why do you need so many USB outlets...are you too lazy to walk over to the included outlet?" LOL. She has a point, not to mention that it's easy to just plug an adapter into the 110 outlets. I suspect the existing standard outlets and lights should suffice for us.
In my opinion, you can never have too many USB or 12V outlets. I configured my trailer with as many as possible ..... and don't regret it.

Virtually every electrical device that I use can be powered and/or charged by USB or a 12v automotive-style adapter. Even when I have shore power, the fridge and converter are typically the only two items consuming 120V AC.

When off grid, It never made sense to me to use a inverter to create power, just to plug in a USB charger.....
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Old 02-02-2024, 02:22 PM   #19
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I really liked the fit and finish of the Airstream, one consideration for me though was the aluminum skin. In a hail storm there can be a lot of damage
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Old 02-02-2024, 07:58 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Selkirk View Post
In my opinion, you can never have too many USB or 12V outlets. I configured my trailer with as many as possible ..... and don't regret it.

Virtually every electrical device that I use can be powered and/or charged by USB or a 12v automotive-style adapter. Even when I have shore power, the fridge and converter are typically the only two items consuming 120V AC.

When off grid, It never made sense to me to use a inverter to create power, just to plug in a USB charger.....
Agreed. We added 12V outlets all over the trailer, including the exterior, and they come in real handy for a variety of reasons.
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