Driving Subaru Forester Looking for advice

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Driving Subaru Forester Looking for advice

Postby BeccerNew » Tue Dec 05, 2017 11:29 pm

Hello All, Becca Here. I am new to the group but I am seriously looking for a for my first Teardrop. I am driving a 2017 Forester and I am currently looking at a Tiny Camper Company KOA or a Rustic Trail Papa Bear. I know they are drastically different, but both appeal to me in different ways. I plan on going off grid and living in my tear drop with my 60 pound retriever and 6 pound chihuahua next year. So I need all the advice and recommendations you guys can give me. I want something under 1,000 pounds and under $6,000 new or a good used. I am coming as an amateur here and am open to whatever advice you all have.

Thanks in advance!
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Re: Driving Subaru Forester Looking for advice

Postby adker27 » Wed Dec 06, 2017 7:00 am

BeccerNew wrote:Hello All, Becca Here. I am new to the group but I am seriously looking for a for my first Teardrop. I am driving a 2017 Forester and I am currently looking at a Tiny Camper Company KOA or a Rustic Trail Papa Bear. I know they are drastically different, but both appeal to me in different ways. I plan on going off grid and living in my tear drop with my 60 pound retriever and 6 pound chihuahua next year. So I need all the advice and recommendations you guys can give me. I want something under 1,000 pounds and under $6,000 new or a good used. I am coming as an amateur here and am open to whatever advice you all have.

Thanks in advance!
I have a 2014 Forrester, my biggest recommendation is be prepared to upgrade the breaks and tires. The car will happily tow a teardrop or even something bigger, but it will take a toll on the breaks. Also the factory Yokohama Geolander tires you only get about 20 to 30 thousand miles before they are bald. I replaced my tires with some Kelly tires, they cost less, have better all around traction, and better gas mileage. The factory breaks at 35k miles, my fronts were at 50% and rears were at 90% worn because I use my trailer a lot.

Just my 2 cents, good luck and have fun.

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Re: Driving Subaru Forester Looking for advice

Postby tony.latham » Wed Dec 06, 2017 10:36 am

My reaction to your post would be the bigger the better for your goal. Within reason––as long as it's within the towing capacity of your Forester.

One thing that jumps out at me though, is the photograph of the Tiny Camper KOA's hatch. It sure looks like it doesn't seal. (And that galley to me is horribly inadequate.)

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Also, there's no mention of a 12V system. I see a 110v outlet listed but there doesn't appear to be any lighting. I wouldn't want to spend my nights wearing a headlamp and charging my phone in an idling car.

Teardrops can get very stuffy. They need lots of ventilation and sometimes a passive (no fan) system just doesn't cut it. When you focus, make sure you get a camper with a fan––and one that doesn't require shore power to run off.

Tony
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Re: Driving Subaru Forester Looking for advice

Postby friz » Wed Dec 06, 2017 10:48 am

I agree. A fan is key to keeping cool in warm months and keeping condensation at bay in the cold. Power to charge your phone and some lights are a bonus.

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Re: Driving Subaru Forester Looking for advice

Postby Esteban » Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:06 pm

Welcome Becca. You can also join the www.tearjerkers.net camping club. Going to one or more of their teardrop gatherings would be a fun experience to meet other owners and see teardrop trailers up close.

I have a 2015 Forester 2.5i Premium with a CVT. Its rated to tow up to 1000 pounds without trailer brakes. Or tow up to 1500 pounds with trailer brakes. Your Forester probably has the same tow ratings.

The optional Subaru trailer hitch costs too much for me to buy one. Instead, I installed a class III 2" trailer hitch I bought from etrailer.com. I had a local car stereo shop wire my Forester for a 7-way trailer connector and a trailer brake controller. I'm (slowly) building a teardrop trailer with brakes.

Link to etrailer video about the best trailer hitches for a 2017 Forester.

Good luck on your search for an appropriate teardrop trailer.

Have you considered building one?

With your budget you could build a very nice one.
Steve - SLO, CA
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Re: Driving Subaru Forester Looking for advice

Postby NotJammer » Wed Dec 06, 2017 5:42 pm

Hi Becca,

I almost bought a Forester. Checking the height of one, I see they are 66.4 to 68.2″ which is almost 6ft. I would match that height. Full time you need room to move. I looked at the Bears trailers, they all look nice to me. I like the Polar Bear, not too tall, not too short. Still within your car's ratings. Sounds like you are solo with one big and one small dog. Your car can carry a lot of load in addition to you 3. The trailer can take bulky stuff. I usually put my water in the tow vehicle on the floor rear.

I used a 94 Civic Hatch for camping and hauling a big load to Burning Man 2000. I took out all seats except my driver's seat. And drove mining road the back way from Winnemucca. Bad idea, but I made it. New tires saved me. I brought 20 gallons of water and 3 steel sculptures. I slept in I when got the sculptures up.

Now I just went overboard with my new rig. yin yang

But listen to these folks as they are mostly Tear Droppers.

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Re: Driving Subaru Forester Looking for advice

Postby Shadow Catcher » Thu Dec 07, 2017 10:29 pm

We are on Subaru number 14. I will back the brakes are fin for the Subaru but I would say get brakes on the trailer, this from personal experience. Our first tear did not have one tear two does.
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Re: Driving Subaru Forester Looking for advice

Postby jondbar628 » Thu Dec 07, 2017 11:31 pm

Shadow.. You must love those Subaru's dude! I added it up (fingers and toes) and I"ve (we"ve) gone through about 20ish vehicles in total, including "spares' and "second cars". We're pushing 70 very hard, and have been driving for nearly 54 years. That includes "pony" cars, muscle cars, retired highway patrol cruisers ( in those days you could NOT outrun them), PU trucks, vans, SUVs, and touring cars. The list is pretty much in chronological order. (Remember, I said 70 yrs old). Lotta different nameplates in there, and stories go with some. To have 14 of one brand shows rare dedication and loyalty. My brother-in-law has a Subaru, likes everything except MPG & repair costs..........jd
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