Camper Trailer - brands, what to look for, good or bad???

Submitted: Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 07:09
ThreadID: 102343 Views:2733 Replies:6 FollowUps:9
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Hey campers!

My family of 5 want a camper trailer. Are they better than a tent & normal trailer???

What brands are good?

What specs do I look for in trailer design, canvas, weight etc...?

What budget should I consider? We're thinking about $8,000 for a second hand one.

Cheers.
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Reply By: Life Member - Phil B (WA) - Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 11:47

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 11:47
Hi Woodsie

More info such as

What type of camping will you be doing overnight or extended?
Will you be doing lots of touring?
On bitumen and gravel mainly?
Or Remote offroad?
What will you be towing it with?

This extra info might elicit better responses for you.

cheers


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AnswerID: 511575

Follow Up By: Woodsie78 - Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 12:39

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 12:39
Overnight & extended stays
Mostly highway & dirt roads, no extreme off-Road
Towing with a Prado

Cheers
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Follow Up By: Woodsie78 - Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 12:40

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 12:40
I have heard 'Camel Group Beachcomber' is good. Thoughts?
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Reply By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 15:27

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 15:27
Have a look on the classified's on this site. There's a Campomatic in your price range...
AnswerID: 511590

Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 15:48

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 15:48
Also a Tambo for $9K - good unit for the price - my brother has one and he's quite happy with it.
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Follow Up By: escapesilv - Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 16:32

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 16:32
Yes 2 for the Tambo looks in very good condition, wish mine looked as tidy and new as that one.

Cheers

Rob
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Reply By: Woodsie78 - Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 17:10

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 17:10
Thanks. Will look now. Cheers.
AnswerID: 511599

Reply By: Sand Man (SA) - Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 20:24

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 20:24
My thoughts are, with a family of five, you will need a soft top camper as they generally provide more "family" space. They do take longer to set up however.

Someone mentioned a Campomatic for sale. This is a hard top camper and is very quick to set up, excluding the annex of course.
I happen to own one of these and while it is a great camper, it is not big enough to provide an additional 3 sleeping positions, in my opinion.
Depending on the age/sex of your children, there are several different configurations you can employ.
For instance, older children could sleep in an additional tent, or swags underneath the annex, which gives them and you, additional privacy and space.
If the children are very young and you need them to be contained in the one area, the extra space of a soft top (e.g. Trakshack) will allow this.

There are many configurations to choose from. It just a matter of what suits your family unit and how much time (and hassle) you are prepared to spend in setting up camp.

Perform some research on the pros and cons of hard top and soft top campers to help define your requirements more.
There are even "hybrid" types such as the Ultimate Campertrailer, but expect a higher price range for this type of solution.

I sometimes take my Oztent (very quick to set up) as well as the Campomatic for additional folk to sleep in, but still be "contained" within the one campsite. The tent is setup adjacent to the camper awning which provides the "communal" living/cooking area. A separate space for older children (especially teenagers) gives them the feeling of their own personal space, while still providing the feeling of the security of parental closeness, rather than control. (Am I making sense?)

Bill


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AnswerID: 511621

Follow Up By: Woodsie78 - Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 21:18

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 21:18
Wow! Thank you. Some food for thought.

I will consider all the tips. Sounds like a soft top will be best.

Cheers
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Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 22:06

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 22:06
Actually the Campomatic is a hard floor - soft top. However I agree the 3 tin lids will need somewhere to sleep.

Honestly, the Tambo is a good option for a soft floor, bit as Bill says, pays to look around.
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Follow Up By: Woodsie78 - Friday, May 24, 2013 at 21:38

Friday, May 24, 2013 at 21:38
Cheers Matt!

We don't mind a soft floor in a tent so we should be good.

Cheers!
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Reply By: AdrianLR (VIC) - Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 22:43

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 22:43
We went through the same questions a few years back (2 adults three kids) and settled on a Trak Shak. Bit above your price point but some of the very first ones from the 90's might occasionally get close.

We're now at a point where the eldest at 16 doesn't want to be in the camper and we take a tent as well. Given this "opportunity" I'm starting to look at options for 4 that are quicker to pack up (particularly when wet).

Also have a look at the campertrailers.org site in the trader section.
AnswerID: 511635

Follow Up By: Woodsie78 - Friday, May 24, 2013 at 21:35

Friday, May 24, 2013 at 21:35
Cheers! Appreciate your info.
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Reply By: Ben J2 - Thursday, May 23, 2013 at 10:09

Thursday, May 23, 2013 at 10:09
Hey Woodsie,

I am a big fan of soft top campers for the family, or as Bill pointed out using the camper for yourself and getting smaller tents for the kids since they often like to be alone.

You asked if a camper is any better than a normal tent and trailer so here is what I know:
A camper tent section will set up faster than a normal tent because it is all hinged, however, with some brands (especially the cheaper ones) they have so many ridge bars in the awning and inside of the tent that to set up the awning can take over 40mins.
You also get the benefit with a camper of all the storage space under the bed so you aren't really pushed for space.

I went to the Rosehill Show in NSW and saw a couple there and one that I really liked and was around your price range was the Diamantina Freelander. From memory it had a proper mattress, hardly any poles and seemed like good canvas (I could see light through the canvas of other brands but this one apparently had a tighter weave and that is why I couldn't)

Essentially my advice is count how many poles it takes to set up, make sure it is an Australian made trailer and an actual bed is always more comfortable than a foam one.

Good Luck!
AnswerID: 511657

Follow Up By: Woodsie78 - Friday, May 24, 2013 at 21:37

Friday, May 24, 2013 at 21:37
I like the storage idea of a camper and the speed. Looks like its worth every penny. A decent mattress is something I didn't consider... Thanks!

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