Best Travel Trailer - mobile ham shack?

Discussion in 'RV Operating and Camping' started by N1KTJ, Jan 29, 2017.

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  1. N1KTJ

    N1KTJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    So with all the hundreds of models of Travel Trailers that can be pulled by a truck or an SUV, which models do hams recommend for an expedition (really just roads in USA) type TT to live in? After years of use in going mobile we (ham community) should have a few opinions.

    Am looking at the Lance brand, and The Winnebego brand myself. But want to know of others that have bought new or used, with the good and the bad and the ugly stories.
     
  2. KL7KN

    KL7KN Ham Member QRZ Page

    Where will you be going? When you say 'live in' do you mean full time or just weekends/a week or two at a time? What kind of radios do you plan on using? The difference between a KX2 and a Swan 350 is massive...

    One option may be to purchase an older used rig and modify it to suit your needs. 'Modern' tow behinds are really (IMO) poorly suited for full time living owing to the materials used. I had several over the years and now just camp in a VW Eurovan (camper with poptop). I'll admit that past a week, other than by myself, would be a chore.

    So -
    add some extra info and I'm sure a ton of folks will weigh in...
     
    K0PIR likes this.
  3. AC0GV

    AC0GV Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have had travel trailers, tents and fifth wheels. They all run out of space, but this year I am buying a new Scamp 16’ (13’ living space). That will take some getting used to along with a lot of space management. However, a small trailer and truck will get you into places that you could never get to with a long bed F350 crew cab and a 33 foot fifth wheel. Best choice is the one that YOU feel at home in when you walk through the door.
     
    WD5IKX likes this.
  4. W1GAK

    W1GAK Ham Member QRZ Page

    Must have solar, remote start generator, wiring for key down current drain, multiple batteries.
    Above all a place for non ham travel partners to hide. I have a bus that is a super ham station but
    its huge but it has 7.5kw diesel generator. Also the best for me is a Artcic Fox truck camper on a heavy duty
    pick-up. Public lands camp grounds.
    Good luck
    Spencer
     
    N1KTJ likes this.
  5. K7WFM

    K7WFM Ham Member QRZ Page

    You can't go wrong with a Lance or Arctic Fox. Both are rated 4 season and
    their build quality is second to none. The only thing I do not like about the Lance is
    the lack of a one piece fiberglass nose and the front windows. Could be potential future water leak areas.

    We've settled on purchasing a Arctic Fox Silver Fox 5th wheel in the next month or two. We plan to take it offroad a lot and the trailer suspension is set up for light offroad. Others, not so much.

    Good luck.
     
    K0PIR likes this.
  6. KD0CAC

    KD0CAC Ham Member QRZ Page

    I haven't tried everything out there , specially the newest stuff .
    Bus's , RV - trailers & motor homes , repaired many for others , customized bus's - even built dry sauna's in , added solar to etc.
    Just like anything else , there is never just one answer , but so far my favorite is Airstream here's a picture of mine a couple yrs. ago in a RV park , multiple antennas up Butternut HV9 , Cushcraft R7 , dual band base for 2m & 70cm .
     

    Attached Files:

  7. N0IU

    N0IU Ham Member QRZ Page

    .....like your budget!
     
  8. N4MU

    N4MU Ham Member QRZ Page

    First priority: YOU must be comfortable! You'll always find a place for the radio(s). Stay within your budget but buy the biggest dang one you can find. You won't regret having done that. If you're doing only "normal" camping almost any brand will do...whatever strikes your fancy. Specific camping environments require specific models to be sure but don't put your $$$ into features you'll not use (i.e. an Airstream in 6 foot snow drifts is not camping to me...it's a weather mistake). Anyway, Airstreams, while solid, look like an aluminum loaf of bread to me...personal opinion. I live full time in a 40' Cedar Creek fiver and have found room for the FT-450D in the bedroom, an ALS-600, fully remoted, amplifier/power supply in a lower cubbie and have run cables out to a Tarheel on a shed roof behind the RV...very few and far between are the calls that don't come back. Comfort for you...number one! Good luck...it's really fun once you get your plan in action!
     
    K0PIR likes this.
  9. K0PIR

    K0PIR XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    We just purchased a used 22' travel trailer, inexpensive and comfortable to us. It's just for weekends and vacations. I did have my radio in mind before we purchased it.

    My Icom 7300 will probably be at the dinette table to start with. I can use the Tarheel on my vehicle. I have an extra controller for it too. I'll just use a power supply for the radio. If needed I can bring in the aux. battery from my vehicle.

    I can operate outside on a table under the awning too.

    After a few vacations I'm sure things will expand. Solar, different antennas, permanent battery and so on. I'd kinda like to try working satellites and doing it outside the camper may be ideal.

    Good thread.

    IMG_4344.JPG
     
    KU4X, K7WFM, N7AGA and 1 other person like this.
  10. K3UJ

    K3UJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Operating while sitting under the awning sounds like fun.
     
    KF5VDX and K0PIR like this.

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