Need help: Which trailer works best for us?

goodol

Member
I have searched for a month, and still can’t decide which one to put down the deposit.
Each one has its pros and cons( I know I know it’s always about the trade offs) but I could happily use some helps for sure, so please throw any of your suggestions/thoughts/ideas at me. Thank you in advance.

- We are a family of four, kids are 4 and 6.
- Live on east coast, not a fan of most campsites.
- Plan to use the trailer for summer time, spring and fall break, winter ski trips if possible, and some prompt weekend/long weekend trips around.

ideally, the trial will:
- good quality, less problems, and last long
- 4/3.5 season ( can use it for below freezing nights occasionally)
- has outdoor kitchen + outdoor/indoor hot shower
- has one queen size bed + two bunks ( converted is ok)
- park inside a 8’ garage
- works for 3-5 day boondocking
- dry weight <4000lb ( we have Jeep Gladiator)

we looked at
1. Kimberley Kamper( top1 candidate, though a bit scary about so much canvas)
2. Boreas EOS-12 ( top2 candidate, though taller for garage)
3. Airstream Basecamp ( dinette is too small for sleeping, indoor kitchen is a minus, les storage, and too tall for our garage)
4. Intech Flyer ( not heater, not shower, water tank is too small)
5. Opus 15 ( it’s interesting but we are not sure the design, and the quality. also storage is limited)
6. Patriot X3 (not a fan of the sleeping arrangements, setting up seems requires strength)
7. Teton X ( smaller water tank, needs winterization, 24m lead time)
8. Conqueror 490 ( worse insulation, setting up takes time)
9. Oliver Elite 2 ( can’t sleep 4)
10. Kimberley karavan ( too expensive, don’t like the dual kitchen, will be perfect if the main kitchen is outside)

Any comments on these trailer? Any other trailers you might want us to take a look? Thank you so much.
 

eatSleepWoof

Do it for the 'gram
I'll give it to you straight: your requirements are 100% unrealistic and nothing exists that will meet them all. Winter use, low weight, fits inside garage, 4 people... not going to happen.

I'll comment on the trailers I'm somewhat familiar with...

#1. Kimberley Kamper will be a good option, but not useable in the winter, and yes, all that fabric will require work (cleaning it off, drying, washing it if dirty, waterproofing once in a blue moon, etc.)
#3. Airstream Basecamp - this is a two person trailer at best. I wouldn't want to have a dog in there, much less two kids. Airstreams are also unusable in the winter: incredibly cold, tin cans.
#4. Intech Flyer - you are not fitting kids in here.
#5. Opus 15 - likely your best choice from the whole list. I've read about some quality issues. Consider the OBI Dweller as an alternative.
#9. Oliver Elite II - Can't sleep the whole family, and the main bed is tiny, too.
#10. Kimberley Karavan - by far the best quality unit, but I think it's much too small for a family of 4. I know some have "fit" that many (and more) people in there, but I wouldn't want to do that.

Also note that the Opus 15 is well over your desired weight at 5159lb dry, and a GVWR of well over 6000lbs.

You should take a look at https://escapetrailer.com/, especially the 19 foot model. The used market may have some of their (older) 15 and 17 foot units, but frankly, they sell in literally hours, and you have little to no chance of finding and buying one. The 19 would be a good option for you, but it'll still be heavier than you want, and won't fit in the garage; however, it'll be a true 3.5 season trailer, and will be well built.

For a proper 4 season trailer and even better quality, look at https://bigfootrv.com/. But as with the Escape, weight and size will be heavier and larger than what you want.

As a last consideration, have a look at the Hymer GT550. Hard to find, but can be done. I had one, and posted a build thread here: https://forum.ih8mud.com/threads/eatsleepwoofs-2019-erwin-hymer-touring-gt550.1227814/. It'll fit in an 8ft garage and is light. But its quality leaves much to be desired, and while it can be used in the winter, it's not a 4-season trailer by any stretch of the imagination.
 
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goodol

Member
I'll give it to you straight: your requirements are 100% unrealistic and nothing exists that will meet them all. Winter use, low weight, fits inside garage, 4 people... not going to happen.

I'll comment on the trailers I'm somewhat familiar with...

#1. Kimberley Kamper will be a good option, but not useable in the winter, and yes, all that fabric will require work (cleaning it off, drying, washing it if dirty, waterproofing once in a blue moon, etc.)
#3. Airstream Basecamp - this is a two person trailer at best. I wouldn't want to have a dog in there, much less two kids.
#4. Intech Flyer - you are not fitting kids in here.
#5. Opus 15 - likely your best choice from the whole list. I've read about some quality issues. Consider the OBI Dweller as an alternative.
#9. Can't sleep the whole family, and the main bed is tiny, too.
#10. Kimberley Karavan - by far the best quality unit, but I think it's much too small for a family of 4. I know people have "fit" that many (and more) people in there, but I wouldn't want to do that.

Also note that the Opus 15 is well over your desired weight at 5159lb dry, and a GVWR of well over 6000lbs.


You should take a look at https://escapetrailer.com/, especially the 19 foot model. The used market may have some of their (older) 15 and 17 foot units, but frankly, they sell in literally hours, and you have little to no chance of finding and buying one. The 19 would be a good option for you, but it'll still be heavier than you want, and won't fit in the garage; however, it'll be a true 3.5 season trailer, and will be well built.

For a proper 4 season trailer and even better quality, look at https://bigfootrv.com/. But as with the Escape, weight and size will be heavier and larger than what you want.

Hi sleepWoof, thank you for pulling me back to reality. I definitely will look into the two options and your comments.
 

eatSleepWoof

Do it for the 'gram
Another tip: go to a local RV dealership, find some "smaller"-sized trailers, in the 19-20 foot range, and bring the whole family inside. Spend 15 minutes in there without leaving. The kids will be get bored, will start moving around back/fourth, and you'll quickly see just how tight a space like that can get. Some folks can certainly get away with much less, but whether that'll work for your family is something only you can tell.

Oh, and a fourth option you should look at is the Winnebago Micro Minnie series: https://www.winnebago.com/models/product/towables/travel-trailer/micro-minnie?floorplans=true. As with others, size and weight will be outside of your boundaries, but they have layouts which are quite nice for a family of your size, while still being in a somewhat small package. Build quality will be inline with most mass-produced North American trailers (maybe a bit better than average, depending on who you ask), but they have their appeal, too.
 

billiebob

Well-known member
Family of 4 with preschoolers and expecting winter use..... you NEED a van.
It'll be over 8' tall.
 

jmmaxus

Member
That’s a very hard combo to find. Safaricondo alto is close but is shy one bed and lead time is 2025. The 8’ fit inside garage and sleep that many people and indoor shower etc. is going to mean soft sides or top or a pop up. The Taxa Mantis is soft pop top and fits all requirements not sure about it being more than 3 season though. A molded fiberglass shell trailer truly are the longest lasting and probably most trouble free, your just not gonna find one at less than 8 foot height. The Escape fiberglass are built in Canada and with all of their winterization options would be 3.5+ season. Other fiberglass like Scamp and Casita probably just 3 season.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Obsessed2findARuggedHybid

Well-known member
Is your gladiator have the 7,000 lb towing capacity or 5,000 pound?

Do you need an off road-ish trailer with suspension? Or would you consider some of the Elkhart built trailers or the fiberglass trailers that are mentioned here?

How long are you willing to wait?

If you do want to go with an off road-ish trailer I like the Boreas eos12 best. It does have canvas but I think you could make it work for ski trips. Consider going dry. It is only a 12 foot box so your kids will likely grow out of it. I know they where trying to stay under 95" but I don't think it would fit. I would call them and see what the hight us with air suspension down and tires deflated.

FYI- my Trail Marker trailer will be 101 " tall and I plan on pulling tires and pushing in garage on wheeled dollies.

Hight Altitude Trailer xt105 is coming out but will not fit in garage and is 4,800 dry.

Answer my questions and I will give you more suggestions
 

Alloy

Well-known member
I've been down this road. Ended up buying a trailer ripping the bottom apart and re-buiding (wiring/frame/tanks/suspension) it.

I'll take a production line trailer off the pavement but I wouldn't take it off road. My buddy's been taking his Outdoors (marketed as off road/4 season) RV off road for 3 years and it has a list of issues now.

We were out with a group in March with night time temps at -5C. Surprised me how many said they could use their trailers in winter but in practice they were packing water jugs and using the outhouse.

You might be better off getting a cargo trailer, insulating then have a cabinet shop do some finishing. Another option is getting something 10yo so you don't care what happens to it.
 

eatSleepWoof

Do it for the 'gram
You might be better off getting a cargo trailer, insulating then have a cabinet shop do some finishing. Another option is getting something 10yo so you don't care what happens to it.

If going down the DIY path, I'd highly recommend starting with a TotalComposites box of a desired size on a trailer frame suitable for the user's purposes: https://totalcomposites.com/travel-trailers/

This would be an awesome starting point for the perfectly-sized, true 4-season trailer.
 

calicamper

Expedition Leader
I have searched for a month, and still can’t decide which one to put down the deposit.
Each one has its pros and cons( I know I know it’s always about the trade offs) but I could happily use some helps for sure, so please throw any of your suggestions/thoughts/ideas at me. Thank you in advance.

- We are a family of four, kids are 4 and 6.
- Live on east coast, not a fan of most campsites.
- Plan to use the trailer for summer time, spring and fall break, winter ski trips if possible, and some prompt weekend/long weekend trips around.

ideally, the trial will:
- good quality, less problems, and last long
- 4/3.5 season ( can use it for below freezing nights occasionally)
- has outdoor kitchen + outdoor/indoor hot shower
- has one queen size bed + two bunks ( converted is ok)
- park inside a 8’ garage
- works for 3-5 day boondocking
- dry weight <4000lb ( we have Jeep Gladiator)

we looked at
1. Kimberley Kamper( top1 candidate, though a bit scary about so much canvas)
2. Boreas EOS-12 ( top2 candidate, though taller for garage)
3. Airstream Basecamp ( dinette is too small for sleeping, indoor kitchen is a minus, les storage, and too tall for our garage)
4. Intech Flyer ( not heater, not shower, water tank is too small)
5. Opus 15 ( it’s interesting but we are not sure the design, and the quality. also storage is limited)
6. Patriot X3 (not a fan of the sleeping arrangements, setting up seems requires strength)
7. Teton X ( smaller water tank, needs winterization, 24m lead time)
8. Conqueror 490 ( worse insulation, setting up takes time)
9. Oliver Elite 2 ( can’t sleep 4)
10. Kimberley karavan ( too expensive, don’t like the dual kitchen, will be perfect if the main kitchen is outside)

Any comments on these trailer? Any other trailers you might want us to take a look? Thank you so much.

Is there a reason Taxa Mantis isnt on your list? Its the only one out of your listed that was specifically designed for your type of use.

The negatives? Price was spun way up vs pre pandemic 32/34k loaded. Todays spiked prices at 32/34k it would be an acceptable option.
Negatives for me two kids 10 and 13. I would need to re work the bunks, not a big deal but still something I would need to do before it would work and again over priced..

Once I decided I could rejigger our side yard and fit something over 7ft 9in tall then my options improved and my price range of options dropped.
A Epro 19FBTH with no oven, no water/heater ie $18,000-$19,000. Which I then would add Truma system. And just use a counter top induction hot plate for rare inside cooking on generator or shore power.

The one long bench I would either remove and replace with a fold up bunk system or make a flip up/down top bunk. Parents up front, kids bunked along wall in the back 1/2.

Mandatory must have is a rear opening hatch/door where we can load bikes, boats etc. My current rig Jumping Jack style rig all our gear is on display like a Sporting Goods end of season sidewalk sale… Which you do not want on long trips transiting through places you don’t know regarding criminal activities etc. Hey look at the $1000’s in stuff on display!!!! Ready for the taking… I freaking hate that about my 11yr old current setup.
 

calicamper

Expedition Leader
Is there a reason Taxa Mantis isnt on your list? Its the only one out of your listed that was specifically designed for your type of use.

The negatives? Price was spun way up vs pre pandemic 32/34k loaded. Todays spiked prices at 32/34k it would be an acceptable option.
Negatives for me two kids 10 and 13. I would need to re work the bunks, not a big deal but still something I would need to do before it would work and again over priced..

Once I decided I could rejigger our side yard and fit something over 7ft 9in tall then my options improved and my price range of options dropped.
A Epro 19FBTH with no oven, no water/heater ie $18,000-$19,000. Which I then would add Truma system. And just use a counter top induction hot plate for rare inside cooking on generator or shore power.

The one long bench I would either remove and replace with a fold up bunk system or make a flip up/down top bunk. Parents up front, kids bunked along wall in the back 1/2.

Mandatory must have is a rear opening hatch/door where we can load bikes, boats etc. My current rig Jumping Jack style rig all our gear is on display like a Sporting Goods end of season sidewalk sale… Which you do not want on long trips transiting through places you don’t know regarding criminal activities etc. Hey look at the $1000’s in stuff on display!!!! Ready for the taking… I freaking hate that about my 11yr old current setup.

The soft sided stuff. I have a tent on a trailer has been an issue for me on our big trips so having hard sides or ability to use in hard side mode is important to my need. High winds in Utah were a definite issue with any soft sided stuff. Bear restrictions on soft sided campers was also a problem during a long trip up north. Both issues that my next trailer won’t have.
The C490 gets flunked given bed pop out is soft sided plus its price. If it had a hard sided flip-up-out like the Opus then yeah it gets interesting. However!!! There is allot to be said about being boring looking vs attention grabbing!!! If I could make a GEOpro or Epro 19FBTH look more like a rolling utility trailer I’d like it even more. The epro/Geopro negative it has a plywood floor and plastic cabinet bowties that break and result in cabinets falling apart
 

calicamper

Expedition Leader
My negatives on the Opus? Made in China assembled in California (where I live). Heavy though not a TV issue for me at 9200lb capability. Its too tall for the garage so the short popup aspect mehh just unnecessary cost and weather weakness vs hard wall. Break or bend something on the suspension and your fabricating it your self to fix. Pre pandemic it was $35-40k.
Same investment group then spun up some other brands and brought over different versions of the same trailer from China at stupid prices. No thanks I’ll take Indiana US garbage over expensive Chinese garbage lol
 

goodol

Member
Is your gladiator have the 7,000 lb towing capacity or 5,000 pound?

Do you need an off road-ish trailer with suspension? Or would you consider some of the Elkhart built trailers or the fiberglass trailers that are mentioned here?

How long are you willing to wait?

If you do want to go with an off road-ish trailer I like the Boreas eos12 best. It does have canvas but I think you could make it work for ski trips. Consider going dry. It is only a 12 foot box so your kids will likely grow out of it. I know they where trying to stay under 95" but I don't think it would fit. I would call them and see what the hight us with air suspension down and tires deflated.

FYI- my Trail Marker trailer will be 101 " tall and I plan on pulling tires and pushing in garage on wheeled dollies.

Hight Altitude Trailer xt105 is coming out but will not fit in garage and is 4,800 dry.

Answer my questions and I will give you more suggestions
Thank you for the suggested options. We will take a look. I like EOS 12 a lot, but my husband really wants to store it in our garage for protection. I’m still working on him.
Out Gladiator has 7000+ tow capacity, but we don’t want to tow a bigger box, we would like to keep it small and nimble to tow, and easy to store in garage or on our driveway ( our driveway is tight too) if that makes sense.
Like I said, we live on the east coast, so nothing too serious about the terrain, we just want a trailer taking us to a little bit more remote places, like dispersed sites, instead of packed campsites.
We don’t mind living small, as long as sleeping situation works.
Thank you.
 

goodol

Member
I've been down this road. Ended up buying a trailer ripping the bottom apart and re-buiding (wiring/frame/tanks/suspension) it.

I'll take a production line trailer off the pavement but I wouldn't take it off road. My buddy's been taking his Outdoors (marketed as off road/4 season) RV off road for 3 years and it has a list of issues now.

We were out with a group in March with night time temps at -5C. Surprised me how many said they could use their trailers in winter but in practice they were packing water jugs and using the outhouse.

You might be better off getting a cargo trailer, insulating then have a cabinet shop do some finishing. Another option is getting something 10yo so you don't care what happens to it.
Thank you for your suggestion. I started to realize I was searching for something might not exist. If storing outside is not a problem, what options you think we have?
 

goodol

Member
Is there a reason Taxa Mantis isnt on your list? Its the only one out of your listed that was specifically designed for your type of use.

The negatives? Price was spun way up vs pre pandemic 32/34k loaded. Todays spiked prices at 32/34k it would be an acceptable option.
Negatives for me two kids 10 and 13. I would need to re work the bunks, not a big deal but still something I would need to do before it would work and again over priced..

Once I decided I could rejigger our side yard and fit something over 7ft 9in tall then my options improved and my price range of options dropped.
A Epro 19FBTH with no oven, no water/heater ie $18,000-$19,000. Which I then would add Truma system. And just use a counter top induction hot plate for rare inside cooking on generator or shore power.

The one long bench I would either remove and replace with a fold up bunk system or make a flip up/down top bunk. Parents up front, kids bunked along wall in the back 1/2.

Mandatory must have is a rear opening hatch/door where we can load bikes, boats etc. My current rig Jumping Jack style rig all our gear is on display like a Sporting Goods end of season sidewalk sale… Which you do not want on long trips transiting through places you don’t know regarding criminal activities etc. Hey look at the $1000’s in stuff on display!!!! Ready for the taking… I freaking hate that about my 11yr old current setup.
Tons of information here. We will look into that. Sorry didn’t hear about Taxa Mantis, will research now. Thank you.
 

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