Author Topic: Best Hybrid?  (Read 34246 times)

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Offline Glen Burnie

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Best Hybrid?
« on: March 14, 2011, 09:35:02 PM »
What do you think is the best hybrid camper and why?  What are some great features to look for?

Offline bikendan

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Re: Best Hybrid?
« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2011, 10:25:29 PM »
i don't think you can say, "who makes the best hybrid". all brands now, make a good product. you'll find some differences but overall, brand quality is much closer to each other, than they used to be.
you first have to decide which floorplan fits you and your family, the best.
once that's decided, then look at what brands make a similar floorplan. then you look at the quality and build of those brands.

for us, we wanted counterspace and a slideout. very few brands had these features. but now, a lot of brands have floorplans with these features, so our choices are much larger than they were back in '06.
based on our wants, we would be looking at the Jayco 23J and the Palomino 238.

i do like Jayco/Starcraft's newer bunk seals/hinge system, along with their permanently fastened canvas. i think all brands should be going to a similar design.

but, i think the Roo/Shamrock hybrids offer the best quality for the best price.

Offline mknott57

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Re: Best Hybrid?
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2011, 08:17:53 AM »
Floorplan was the answer for us.  We had a Starcraft popup and liked the quality that we saw in that.  We first looked at hybrids at the RV show in Hershey in 2008.  We really liked the Roos, but it seemed to us we could either get counterspace, closet space, or floorspace, but not all.  The next Fall, we went back to the show and they had Starcraft/Travelstar units on display.  They were not there the previous year.  DW fell in love with the floorplan of the 237CKS and there was no turning back.  We love it.
Mick and Liz

Offline Storm Trooper

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Re: Best Hybrid?
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2011, 08:50:47 AM »
I looked at a lot of different brands of Hybrids. I was disappointed in the overall quality of all of them.
However, the Starcraft/Jayco and the Keystone Passport Hybrids seemed to be a bit better.
Truth is just about all the companies have similar floorplans.
I went with the best price between the Starcraft and Keystone and went with the Keystone.
The sealed bunk ends on the Keystone passport as well as the breathable fabric Sunbrella on the bunk ends was definitely a plus as opposed the the non-breatheable vinyl bunk ends on the others.
The biggest problem with Hybrids seems to be water penetration and resulting damage and I think the Starcraft/Jaco's and Keystone Passports have done a much better job at preventing this.
I can close up the bunk ends wet and not worry about water getting where it doesn't belong...

Offline flyfisherman

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Re: Best Hybrid?
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2011, 11:39:10 AM »
Let me say soemthing here for my experience with canvas -
Starcraft's "Aqualon" does not take a back seat to any other tent fabric on the market.  Has excellent dimensional stability, no stretching or shrinking, remains pliable in all tmperatures, is abrasion resistant and has a high tensile strength. In the last hydrostatic testing that I am aware of, Aqualon had no leakage at 85 cm of water. By contrast, Sumbrella 302 began leaking at 38cm of water.
Fly

Offline Storm Trooper

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Re: Best Hybrid?
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2011, 03:42:11 PM »
Fly,

First off , Aqualon is not Starcrafts Aqualon, but is a product that Starcraft buys for it's tent ends.
Same with Sunbrella, it is not Keystone's Sunbrella, but is a product for tent ends that Keystone uses.

And yes, Aqualon is far superior in repelling water than Sunbrella. But, and this is a big but, I have used Sunbrella on three campers now, going back to  1999. I never had water come through the Sunbrella in some amazing downpours and my campers were setup 9 months of the year either in my yard or on the campsite. My 99 Niagara was only down for the winter or for transport. The Sunbrella never leaked during the 8 eight years I had the Niagara nor the three I had the Avalon.

However, I do suspect that as good as the Aqualon is at repelling water, it retains water just fine inside the camper and doesn't breathe nearly as well as Sunbrella does on my hybrid.

With popups, I'm always reading about puppers who have to leave a window open at night to try and keep the inside dry. I never had that problem with either of my pups with the Sunbrella fabric. The Sunbrella does have to be kept clean and maintained for it to do it's job (once a year usually). The Aqualon probably requires a bit less maintenance because of it's more repellent nature.
« Last Edit: March 15, 2011, 04:50:47 PM by Storm Trooper »

Offline Grim

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Re: Best Hybrid?
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2011, 04:46:15 PM »
We have a Trail-Lite Bantam 21 and love it. It has enough room and the floorplan is perfect for me DW and the camping dacshund.

Grim :D, Paige :), and Sadie the camping dacshund  :dog:.
Grim :P, Paige ;), Sadie :dog:

Offline flyfisherman

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Re: Best Hybrid?
« Reply #7 on: March 15, 2011, 06:14:19 PM »
Lou ~ Sunbrella is (I still hope) manufactured here in North Carolina by Colonial Mills at Glen Raven.
Aqualon is (I still hope) manufactured by Avondale Mills, Graniteville, South Carolina.

Both are specialty fabric manufacturers and date back over half a century, making awnings, canvas products and such. But their origins go much further back. Aqualon (long before it ever went by that name and owned by Avondale) use to be called the Graniteville Company and was the first cotton mill in South Carolina opening in 1845. More importantly, they made sails for the tall ships for the ports of Charleston and Beaufort. Sunbrella (long before it ever went by that name), made sails for the tall ships of the North Carolina port cities like Wilmington and New Bern and other NC ports. Story has it they were competitive rivals back then with sailors arguing which company made the better sail ... of course sailors did not call them sails in those days, they were called "sheets". It's only fitting, therefore, that popup campers would be arguing today which is the better fabric ... Aqualon or Sunbrella.
Fly

Offline Storm Trooper

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Re: Best Hybrid?
« Reply #8 on: March 15, 2011, 06:24:56 PM »
Fly,

Agreed. Both are great products. Who made the Aquashield Starcraft was using in 09/10? The description on that one seemed to be closer to Sunbrella than Aqualon?
And BTW, no wonder I picked the Sunbrella, it's from the North of the Carolinas.  ;D

Offline flyfisherman

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Re: Best Hybrid?
« Reply #9 on: March 15, 2011, 06:44:07 PM »
Not familiar ... are you talking this stuff(?)



http://www.aquashield.com/
Fly

Offline Storm Trooper

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Re: Best Hybrid?
« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2011, 06:58:15 PM »
When I was looking at the 2010 models the Starcraft brochure had the tenting listed as Aquashield and it looked similar in construction to Sunbrella. I had heard Starcraft was going to Aqualon in 2011 in their pups and HTT's. But, I was never able to find a manufacturer for the Aquashield.

Offline flyfisherman

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Re: Best Hybrid?
« Reply #11 on: March 15, 2011, 07:06:30 PM »
When I was looking at the 2010 models the Starcraft brochure had the tenting listed as Aquashield and it looked similar in construction to Sunbrella. I had heard Starcraft was going to Aqualon in 2011 in their pups and HTT's. But, I was never able to find a manufacturer for the Aquashield.


I've not kept abreast of Starcraft, especially when they were pulled back into Jayco ... assumed they were now a Jayco 1st cousin. But thought they had kept on with the Aqualon.
Fly

Offline Storm Trooper

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Re: Best Hybrid?
« Reply #12 on: March 15, 2011, 08:05:33 PM »
It looked to me like that all  Starcraft's  became  rebadged Jayco's. I heard their plan was to reopen the Starcraft plant and start making the Starcraft Trailers again, but the pups will remain rebadged Jaycos. 

Offline flyfisherman

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Re: Best Hybrid?
« Reply #13 on: March 16, 2011, 06:35:07 PM »
When I was looking at the 2010 models the Starcraft brochure had the tenting listed as Aquashield and it looked similar in construction to Sunbrella. I had heard Starcraft was going to Aqualon in 2011 in their pups and HTT's. But, I was never able to find a manufacturer for the Aquashield.



Lou ~ I Contacted  Starcraft ... (well, Jacyo/Starcraft), and informed that the Starcraft still uses Aqualon. Seems the "Aquashield" is a sales buzz word they invented  to make it appear that it's an all exclusive that nobody else has. But it's the same 'ole same 'ole Aqualon.

They better hope it does not come back to bite them!
Fly

Offline DaveS

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Re: Best Hybrid?
« Reply #14 on: March 17, 2011, 12:15:42 AM »
It looked to me like that all  Starcraft's  became  re badged Jayco's. I heard their plan was to reopen the Starcraft plant and start making the Starcraft Trailers again, but the pups will remain re badged Jaycos.

Lou - I spoke with my local dealer today, he said that Starcraft will be making the 2012 HTTs and TTs out of their old plants.  The PUPs and 5ers will remain re badged Jaycos for now.  No major design changes are expected until the 2013 model year.
Dave :baseballhat: , Lyn ::) , George  :camperkid: & Bella  :dog:

 

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