Swan or Flamingo
Submitted: Monday, Sep 04, 2006 at 10:49
My wife are looking at Jayco campers and think either the Outback
Swan or Flamingo would suit our needs. We have 3 kids aged 9, 6 and
5 and plan to do weekend camping trips, caravan park holidays and
maybe some outback trips.
We like the Flamingo because the eating area is more accomodating
for 5 people but once the table is converted to a bed then there is
no seating in the van. We like the Swan because with the table
converted to a bed then the kids can be put to bed at one end of the
van leaving the other end for us. We realise that most of the time
we would be eating and or sitting outside but would like to know
other people thoughts on this.
What should we look for in an annexe and end flys? We have the
option of bagged or not bagged what are the advantages
disadvantages? What other options should we consider? Gas instead of
Microwave oven? external shower etc.
At this stage we are a bit confused and would like some suggestions
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Reply By: Grizzle - Monday, Sep 04, 2006 at 11:38
Monday, Sep 04, 2006 at 11:38
I think it's horses for courses. We have a Swan Offroad with Bed End Flys and Awnings in the Bags and left mounted on the Van. We do mostly bush camping so we don't use the microwave. We like the Swan because the fridge is in line with the doorway. When we are travelling we can access the fridge by opening the clips on the side, lifting the roof slightly just by pushing on it, and opening the van door. I am in the process of fitting a heat exchanger to my car for showers but up until now we have used an external shower.
Reply By: RonEv - Monday, Sep 04, 2006 at 13:21
Monday, Sep 04, 2006 at 13:21
Have a look at the Coromal Silhouette Range with the push out kitchen. They are dearer than Jayco but quality is far superior. Be very careful with full annexes on any wind up camper because of the weight and pulling down effect on the roof of the camper which is only supported in 4 places
as you would know.
Good luck with whatever choice
Reply By: Member - John R (NSW) - Monday, Sep 04, 2006 at 14:33
Monday, Sep 04, 2006 at 14:33
We have a Coromal Silhouette which is similar. In regard to the dinette seating, our preference was the L shape as it gave a little more room.
We bought deluxe bagged Flys, which has full shadecloth covers which velcro in. We chose an Aussie Traveller awning/annexe, which rolls up into a box like a caravan awning. The reason we chose it over the bag awning was its ease of setting up, and the framework and legs are fully self-contained within the box. Takes less than a minute to set up/pack up, and if it's breezy all you need are 2 tent pegs to secure it to the ground.
With regard to the kids, if they aren't too tall, you could probably sleep all 3 of them crossways on the rear bed with their feet facing the inside of the camper. That way you've got over a king-sized bed width. Just a thought.
Reply By: markcas - Monday, Sep 04, 2006 at 18:15
Monday, Sep 04, 2006 at 18:15
Paul i had a Flamingo Outback up to last week.We found with 2 Adults and two kids the van was always messy.You have to lift up seats to get to storage for cloths.After owning ours we thought the swan with the cupboard as you enter the van would have been better to store cloths etc .We had the bigger table but mainly sat out side.We had a shurflow pump fitted and tap on draw bar so we could attach a hose and wash the kids of after a swim at the beach.We always used the bed flys and in 12 mths used the annexe twice.If you don't get a annex make sure your awning has a gable ends so the next person can fit one if they want.We always cooked outside don't wast your money changing inside.We sold ours and have brought a Expanda easier to set up and no canvass going up and down each time(my thoughts only).For the shower the pop up tents fit under the mattress no need to get back in the bag and $20.00 12v shower in a bucket with boiled water from stove did us just fine.
Reply By: yakodi - Monday, Sep 04, 2006 at 18:35
Monday, Sep 04, 2006 at 18:35
Gday - we travelled Australia
from Oct 2004 - Til Dec 2005 in the OUtback Jayco Flamingo 2004 model, with a 2 yr old. Travelled many of the outback highways, NT, VIC, SA, WA. We loved the camper but you'll need to do a bit of preventative maintenance along the way. Take a handfull of pop-rivets, self tappers, small bolts/screws, thick insulation tape or duct, spare shocks (you will not be able to buy them anywhere close when you need them)- fit some decent shock protectors, a front deflector guard would be a great investment - as the front of the Jayco is prone to a lot of stone damage. We broke
both shock mounts clean off in the Kimberley
due to stone damage & shock failure. Make sure the boat racks are close enough together - Jayco will put them on as far apart as possible, dust ingress is always an issue - but some strategically placed tape works wonders. Forget any deep water crossings. Don't get me wrong we loved our Jayco -it followed us everywhere the patrol went, and more than a few people were surprised to see it up at Mitchell falls
. Just look after it and be aware of its limitations - it is wider than most campers. The Coromals are worth a look - if you buying 2nd hand as the finish and quality is 100% on the jayco Try and buy a 2nd hand Jayco - one that is not stone damaged and well loved, youlll save thousands. The 1977 Jayco Camper is very similar the 2006 version - (its worth a look). Another thing is to consider an after market bag awning and flys - as jayco (in WA) offers a poor product (cheap & nasty) if you compare to aftermarket awnings & flys. All the best
Reply By: AJB - Monday, Sep 04, 2006 at 18:53
Monday, Sep 04, 2006 at 18:53
The main problem with wind up campers is access to the van during lunch stops whilst travelling and the time taken to set up. Their awnings are painful to put up each day if you are moving often. They are designed for a longer stay at one location.
I had one and it was good but got sick of set ups and it was too hot in the NW. I then got a pop top but missed the floor space. Now its an Expanda. Look at these for a family before a wind up.