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Old 02-05-2017, 09:56 AM   #1
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Hello everyone. I'm 2 days new to this forum; first forum I've ever joined. My wife and I used to be tenters when the kids were young until I finally got tired of setting up in the dark and packing up in the rain. Sleeping on slowly deflating mattresses and living out of coolers also slowly curbed my appetite into keeping my eyes open for a pop up. Low and behold, I was working at a customers house and noticed an old pop up surrounded by weeds behind the garage and asked about it. Their kids were all moved out and he just gave it to me. How awesome ! I was afraid to look inside but after he set it up I was amazed at how well he preserved it. Everything was like new. We camped a few times in this 20-30 year old pop up but I felt we still needed more space. Found a little newer Coleman pop up with a slide out for 2 grand. What a deal! Had to drive 2 hours to get it but totally worth it !! Sold ours for $1000, later found out we could have gotten more, and bought the newer one. Still, it was better than tenting but we still had to set it back up once we got home to dry out and couldn't store everything we wanted to bring with us in it. So, the search continued. Found a 31' 09 flagstaff forest river that a buddy's buddy had and would let it go for $7000. Wow, super good deal I thought. It had one small leak above the slide out which I would fix and flip this one as well, or just keep it. Everything else was still like new. Sold the Coleman for $4200 to the first couple to see it. Talked my friends friend down to $6000 and bought it. See where I'm getting with this ? lol. I netted around 3200 after the first two deals, this one technically only cost me $2800. Super nice trailer with living room and bedroom slide outs. Once I started tearing out the rot, I not only realize that the entire wall needed rework but the bedroom slide had the same issue and part of the bedroom ceiling too. Omg what a nightmare. I had fixed all the leaks, removed all the water logged rot, cleaned with bleach solution, primed, and was about to start rebuilding when I saw a barely used 2015 fun finder 266kirb for sale down the street at an rv dealer. Told the wife to come check it out with me just to see if we like it so when we're done with the trailer maybe we will get something like that. She didn't want to go but reluctantly did. As soon as she saw the inside, she said "Omg I want this!!!" I laughed and said we needed to wait until I sold ours. Just for giggles the sales guy ran some numbers and actually was willing to give us back what we paid for the trailer to get us into this new one. Wasn't really ready to pull the trigger so soon; wanted to make more money on the leaky one but what the heck, I was pretty tired of trying to get rid of the moldy smell and everything else that came with that camper. Good riddance !! We absolutely love the new trailer. About 3000 lbs lighter too. We live in Michigan and our daughters preparing for college in North Carolina so we plan on using it a lot to go see her. Our first trip in it was last year to visit the college. Everything work awesome. I was also pleasantly surprised at how fast the hot water tank recovery was taking showers !! And, I never new about Walmarting overnight until that trip. That was really great too. Well, sorry so long, good to join the network and hope to meet some great people with good ideas and tips. Take care.
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Old 02-05-2017, 12:47 PM   #2
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Rhelfer, don't apologize for the long post -- what a great story! I can't believe they essentially bailed you out of that leaky trailer for a like-new Fun Finder -- what a score!

It sounds like you know your way around trailering and tools, so I won't say "welcome, and ask lots of questions." Instead, it's "welcome, and join in the discussion!"
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Old 02-05-2017, 01:26 PM   #3
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I'll add my welcome and join the discussion too.
Like you, we tented it until 2012 when, after some unpleasant experiences with rain and air mattresses .... and age getting the best of us. Tenting was great as traveled by motorcycle & "space restricted" but after seeing several toy haulers decided worth making a change.

Purchased our toy hauler new and have been super pleased.

Ejoy
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Old 02-05-2017, 04:33 PM   #4
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Thanks for the nice welcoming guys. Yes, I was surprised they took it in on a trade-in considering it's condition. I guess during slow winter months they're willing to make things happen. I think that they knew how bad she wanted it but also knew I wasnt budging after I turned down their first two offers. I was either going to break even on the trade in or we would come back after I fixed it. Was surprised when everything finally fell into place and the deal was made. They didn't even need to see it in person, only a detailed video of it and the areas I was working on. And yeah, I'm a carpenter in the remodeling business so I'm pretty good with tools. These trailers are a little bit of a different animal than houses but still up my alley. One thing I've realized with these trailers is that they are "production" built, not "custom" built. When a little piece of decorative trim fell off inside, my wife threw a fit. Almost started crying. I just laughed and tried to explain this to her. If I have to reattach a piece here or there and or tighten up loose plumbing drain parts or what not, no big deal. I look at how well is the overall thing built. How well is the underbelly attached and what's up underneath that corroplast anyways? Maybe I could insulate under there better and add a 4" heat dump instead of the 2" that's there to heat it better. She could care less. For the most part, I'm very happy with the overall construction cruiser did. I'm in the process of finishing a gravel driveway where it's parked and planning on building a camper port for it in the spring. I'll feel a lot better once the roof is completely protected when it's parked. I'll post some pics soon and later after it's built 😀How do u like the toy hauler eagle? We've talked about getting some quads one day maybe and a hauler. We'll see
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Old 02-06-2017, 07:12 AM   #5
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We have found the XT-276 well built and just the right size for the two of us. There have been a few tweeks needed here and there but no major issues and never needed any 'warranty service.'

I would add that having a 'walk around front bed' like in the 266 would be a huge improvement in the 276.

This is the first camper ever owned/used. I wasn't concerned the selling dealer was over 300 miles away.

I was confident could make any repairs needed and towing wasn't a big issue either as spent over a decade towing manufactured homes up to 16'wide and 85' long...about 100 units annually. Also had my own manufactured home repair/service business for a time and had worked at a dealership as the service manager, plus previous experience in the construction industry and a certified master mechanic. All this after growing up on a farm where my father taught me "never hire someone to do what you can do yourself.'

The last couple of times attended the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally the BIL went along. We had both fully size Harley's loaded in the garage area of the toy hauler. The camper handled the loaded weight fine with zero issues.

When the wife and I go, we always take our Harley along and use it to explore the surrounding area. If the weather is bad, can always use the tow vehicle so best of both worlds available.

Happy camping.
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Old 02-12-2017, 07:06 PM   #6
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Hi Rhelfer2,
Welcome to the forum and to the world of "hard-side" trailers, from a Minnesota neighbor...

And as many of us have experienced, the trailer offers much more comfort in inclement weather...

My FF (~19-1/2") is a bit smaller than yours (I think) and works great for the more remote campsites I like... I am picking mine up tomorrow from the shop... a new roof and a couple upgrades... I am already planning a couple trips up to the Boundary Waters and hope to catch a moose in the camera lens...

Maybe we'll meet sometime around a nice campfire...
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Old 02-12-2017, 08:16 PM   #7
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Thanks for the new CEO welcome 😀. Boundary waters huh? Looks like a beautiful area to visit and camp. Maybe one day We'll venture up that way. Good luck on catching those stills of a moose as well. Your ff is about 8 feet shorter i think but I'm sure easier to navigate. What's the story with the roof and what kind of upgrades are you having done ? I'm always looking at different ways to make camping trips easier and more fun. Well, happy camping and good luck with all the service work !!
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Old 02-13-2017, 06:15 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhelfer2 View Post
Thanks for the new CEO welcome 😀. Boundary waters huh? Looks like a beautiful area to visit and camp. Maybe one day We'll venture up that way. Good luck on catching those stills of a moose as well. Your ff is about 8 feet shorter i think but I'm sure easier to navigate. What's the story with the roof and what kind of upgrades are you having done ? I'm always looking at different ways to make camping trips easier and more fun. Well, happy camping and good luck with all the service work !!
You are welcome Rhelfer2,
My roof had two small tears/cuts near the left and right forward edges; these leaked water and developed rot. They R&R'd about 4 feet of the roof decking (3/4" Plywood), removed all the vinyl roof membrane and replaced with a rubber roof membrane. While the had had everything off the roof, I upgraded the original roof vent fan with a Fantastic Fan and Hood. I am tired of having to lay down to connect/disconnect the Gray and Black tanks single drain hose and had them replace the old black drain valve and at the time add an extension that just reaches the side of the trailer... Installed a backup camera and gave the furnace, water heater, refrigerator and A/C a check. The trailer is in the driveway now where I can get a couple of things done inside...

The Boundary Water is a fantastic area and in starting to look for campgrounds, many, if not most, are open till May...

What part of Michigan are you located in?
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