Looks like my Jeep plan hit a snag.... an Airstream snag. - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old December 13th, 2010, 01:42 AM
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Looks like my Jeep plan hit a snag.... an Airstream snag.

Well, things have gone from odd to surreal in the past week. Here I was getting my D-90 ready to sell, when a convesation with Dad drops an old Airstream trailer on me. Not just any old Airstream, but Grandpa's old Airstream that he bought barely used back in the late 60's. I just need to get it back to NY from South Dakota in the spring. Road Trip!!!!!!

Suddenly I'm worrying about towing capacities and wheel horsepower, which the D90 and Wrangler are pretty closely matched at. But the Defender has much better weight carrying, according to the books, and an equal load rating for trailers. Not going to do the NY/SD round trip to pick it up, but for local towing I shouldn't have a problem, correct? Anybody know the max frontal area for towing with a NAS D-90? Did they ever even publish one?

Looks like I'll be holding onto the Defender for a bit longer until the new Pentastar engines get dropped into the Wranglers. Can't say I'm complaining at all about this current situation at all.

-Hans
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  #2  
Old December 13th, 2010, 08:38 AM
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If the question is how well either the Defender or the Jeep will tow an Airstream, the answer for both is "poorly" You need an F250.
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  #3  
Old December 13th, 2010, 09:29 AM
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what size airstream ?
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  #4  
Old December 13th, 2010, 09:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 130Tdi View Post
what size airstream ?
17' it's a little thing.
2200lbs empty, 200lb tongue weight.

I know the D90 can't tow it. The JK Unlimited Wrangler is marginal right now, but should be ok with the new engine next year. I'm shocked how much the Wranglers have grown over the years. Longer, heavier, more power than my '78 full sized Blazer used to be.

-Hans
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  #5  
Old December 13th, 2010, 10:08 AM
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This is something I have researched well...I was going to buy a 16' which weights 3500 lbs. well that just happens to be the max towing cap. of a 90 if the trailer has electric brakes. However the 16' Bambi (yeah dont laugh) only sleeps a max of four people so with my clan that doesnt work.

I cancelled that and decided to go with a 22 to 27', however, that requires the purchase of an 110 that has a towing cap of 5000 lbs with electric brakes...what a GREAT way to justify that sort of purchase!! Well thats at least a year off so I just I just recently purchase an adventure trailer and I pick it up in February. I dont think I would haul that Airsteam with the 90, unless you have enhanced the suspension! Rent a f250 or something...
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  #6  
Old December 13th, 2010, 10:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Larson View Post
This is something I have researched well...I was going to buy a 16' which weights 3500 lbs. well that just happens to be the max towing cap. of a 90 if the trailer has electric brakes. However the 16' Bambi (yeah dont laugh) only sleeps a max of four people so with my clan that doesnt work.

I cancelled that and decided to go with a 22 to 27', however, that requires the purchase of an 110 that has a towing cap of 5000 lbs with electric brakes...what a GREAT way to justify that sort of purchase!! Well thats at least a year off so I just I just recently purchase an adventure trailer and I pick it up in February. I dont think I would haul that Airsteam with the 90, unless you have enhanced the suspension! Rent a f250 or something...
Getting it home from South Dakota, that's the exact plan, rent a Tahoe or something of that size to get it here. Spend this summer renovating the trailer to a usable status, and get a 4dr Wrangler in the fall when the newer engine is available and they (hopefully) up the towing capacity above 3500lbs.

Just don't trust my D90's current amount of available power, short wheelbase and clutch of indeterminate age.

-Hans
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  #7  
Old December 13th, 2010, 11:04 AM
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This might be a good resource for you...http://www.colonialairstream.com/

Good Luck!!
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  #8  
Old December 13th, 2010, 11:12 AM
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Quote:
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This might be a good resource for you...http://www.colonialairstream.com/

Good Luck!!
I've been digging a lot on various airstream forums, some really involved restoration threads out there for the old models. A few guys out there towing more modern versions of the same size.

Going to be a fun project once it gets here in the spring.

-Hans
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  #9  
Old December 13th, 2010, 12:30 PM
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You should be OK with towing a 17' Airstream with the D-90 as long as you don't pack too much stuff in it. I wouldn't go any bigger but the 60's Airstreams were narrower and lighter than the ones built after 1968. I've towed a 13' travel trailer (1200lbs loaded) and an aluminum car trailer (650lbs) with an 1800 lb Porsche 356 on it a lot with my D-90 and never experienced any difficulties. Of course a 110 makes a much better tow vehicle but I think if you can keep the overall weight down under 2500 lbs the Defender will handle towing in short to medium length hauls. I'd stick with idea of renting a Tahoe for the retrieval though - it will a more comfortable experience.

17" Airstreams are way cool - probably a Caravelle model - just one small step up from a Bambi - enjoy it!
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  #10  
Old December 13th, 2010, 05:28 PM
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Quote:
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17" Airstreams are way cool - probably a Caravelle model - just one small step up from a Bambi - enjoy it!

Yep, it's a 1965 Caravel. Grandpa bought it when it was only a year or two old, and it's been in the family ever since. I've spent MANY nights in it when I was younger and am just too excited that it's going to be mine now. My Wife has developed a taste for national parks and road trips, so this is going to be fantastic for future vacations with her and my daughter.

I feel fine with towing it around locally with the D90, just not with longer road trips.

-Hans
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  #11  
Old December 13th, 2010, 06:33 PM
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There's a GREAT article on the founder of Airstream in this month's Overland Journal. Almost made me want to get one!
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  #12  
Old December 13th, 2010, 07:01 PM
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Those 17 footers are awesome, and worthy of resoration. I see a lot of restored Airstreams leaving the US @ the marine terminals.
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