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RockHound
We have had a pop-up for about 5 years now, and are interested in changing to a hybrid. I just wanted to get some input from hybrid owners, past and present, on things like fuel economy and ease of set up. Is the bed canvas more water proof than on a pop-up? Is it as bad to mildew? We don't have heat in our pop-up, so our camping season is limited. Does a hybrid heat well, even with the slide out/fold out beds? We have a big storage box on the front of our pop-up that is packed full so, is there ample storage? Anything else you can think of that I missed? Thanks.
HappiestCamper
We've had a hybrid for 7 years now. Never had a popup, so I'll answer as best as possible. Fuel economy depends on your vehicle. My 99 Suburban got about the same on the highway with camper than it did around town w/o. My 06 Suburban got about 16 around town w/o, 10 on highway with. I just got a Dodge 2500 diesel, haven't towed with it yet. It takes me about 1 hour to setup. My next trailer will not be a hybrid - I want to be able to make the beds at home. I've never had any problem with the canvas leaking. We got some covers for the bedrooms (http://www.popupgizmos.com) to deal with the condensation. This combined with some 12 volts fans I put in helps to heat the bedrooms - the furnace puts out a lot of heat. Storage in ours is lacking, so there's another reason it takes so long for us to setup.

We've been happy with ours. It was perfect when we got it for us and our two boys. When we had an unexpected blessing of a daughter the next year - still not sure where she came from, but the red hair removed my suspicions laugh.gif - with 5 it is getting cramped. The model we have isn't made anymore - you can look at it here http://www.musc.edu/~nelsonjo/camper (we got the 2100). We bought it in 2002, it was a 2000 that the dealer had never sold, so it was cheaper than any new popup.
RockHound
QUOTE(HappiestCamper @ Jul 9 2009, 02:40 PM) *

We've had a hybrid for 7 years now. Never had a popup, so I'll answer as best as possible. Fuel economy depends on your vehicle. My 99 Suburban got about the same on the highway with camper than it did around town w/o. My 06 Suburban got about 16 around town w/o, 10 on highway with. I just got a Dodge 2500 diesel, haven't towed with it yet. It takes me about 1 hour to setup. My next trailer will not be a hybrid - I want to be able to make the beds at home. I've never had any problem with the canvas leaking. We got some covers for the bedrooms (http://www.popupgizmos.com) to deal with the condensation. This combined with some 12 volts fans I put in helps to heat the bedrooms - the furnace puts out a lot of heat. Storage in ours is lacking, so there's another reason it takes so long for us to setup.

We've been happy with ours. It was perfect when we got it for us and our two boys. When we had an unexpected blessing of a daughter the next year - still not sure where she came from, but the red hair removed my suspicions laugh.gif - with 5 it is getting cramped. The model we have isn't made anymore - you can look at it here http://www.musc.edu/~nelsonjo/camper (we got the 2100). We bought it in 2002, it was a 2000 that the dealer had never sold, so it was cheaper than any new popup.

Thanks for the response. I saw some of those covers at Myrtle Beach last week and wondered what they were called. We want to get some to help keep our pop-up cool. Our poor a/c had to run constantly, with lukewarm the best we could hope for during the heat of the day. Thanks for the link, also. We have looked at hybrids in the past, but didn't/don't have the money to upgrade. We hope to get one with three beds. Our boys are young enough now that they don't mind sharing, but that will change soon enough. Mean time, the extra bed would be good for luggage, etc. At the very least, two beds and a slide out would be nice. Thanks again for the info.
reviewguy
QUOTE(RockHound @ Jul 9 2009, 03:04 PM) *

Thanks for the response. I saw some of those covers at Myrtle Beach last week and wondered what they were called. We want to get some to help keep our pop-up cool. Our poor a/c had to run constantly, with lukewarm the best we could hope for during the heat of the day. Thanks for the link, also. We have looked at hybrids in the past, but didn't/don't have the money to upgrade. We hope to get one with three beds. Our boys are young enough now that they don't mind sharing, but that will change soon enough. Mean time, the extra bed would be good for luggage, etc. At the very least, two beds and a slide out would be nice. Thanks again for the info.


I HAVE A ROCKWOOD ROO MODEL 233 FOR SALE THAT SOUNDS EXACTLY LIKE WHAT YOU
ARE LOOKING FOR - EXCELLENT COND. REPLY BACK IF INTERESTED.

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RockHound
QUOTE(reviewguy @ Jul 9 2009, 11:36 PM) *

I HAVE A ROCKWOOD ROO MODEL 233 FOR SALE THAT SOUNDS EXACTLY LIKE WHAT YOU
ARE LOOKING FOR - EXCELLENT COND. REPLY BACK IF INTERESTED.

barrysphotography@yahoo.com

Thanks for the offer, but we're not in a position for upgrading just yet. Just want to make an informed decision when the time comes. Will probably have to trade/finance at a dealer when the time comes, and the economy has me too scared to do that right now. Any info or tips you can share on owning a hybrid?
KentuckyCampin
We have a Gulfstream Mini SL hybrid. It is the 23GBH. It has one drop out on the left rear corner, dinette that turns into a king size bed and bunkbeds. As far as the room we upgraded from a 1981 Palomino Mustang XL hardside. It was a large pop up and we just outgrew it. The Gulfstream is a nice camper, but there are a couple of things you should consider when buying a hybrid, or any other travel trail.
This list are things one should consider:
1. counter top space - make sure you figure on things like coffee pot, preparation space, etc..
2. double kitchen sink - nice to do dishes in a double sink, and not the little mini single sink stuck in many campers.
3. Shower/toilet - I have the combination shower/toilet, and wish we had a normal shower. Having a shower in the camper is nice, but a seperate shower/toilet would be nicer!!
4. Cabinet space for pots and pans and things you use frequently while camping!!! More space that is accessible without lifting seats/opening outside doors is a plus.
5. Hybrid drop down - Two drawbacks to the hybrid trailers is noise and leaks. It is just like a pop up when it comes to the noise in the campground. We have a fold out on the side, and we have slept in it maybe 2 times due to the noise in campgrounds. And also the seal leaks on our door. Every time it rains I have to open it up and dry it out. A new seal is supposed to be on order from Gulfstream to fix this.
If I had it to do over again, I would not have bought a hybrid, as I have not used the fold out very often, and it limits the other space I could have had in that area of the camper that normally would be used for storage etc...
6. Single axle vs. tandem axle - go with a tandem axle, they tow a heck of alot better than single axle. My Mini SL tows fine with my chevy truck, but it has the Z71 suspension. However to tow it with my Tahoe, I had to purchase a load distribution hitch and an anti-sway control. And my Tahoe is 4X4 as well, just does not have the Z71 suspension and is alot softer ride than my truck.

As far as set up, the Mini SL is alot faster to set up than my old pop up. I can be completely set up in about 20 minutes, this includes leveling, water hook up, electric hook up, awning out and hot water heater running. I have used my camper quite a bit, and once you get it down to a science, it is no problem!!

Gas mileage did change. I went from around 15 mpg - pop up, to 10 mpg with the Mini SL. That is both the Tahoe and pick up.

Canvas is the same material that pop ups use.

Heating is no problem, we camped last october in 40 F temps at night, and the heater kept the camper nice and toasty.
Hope this helps!!!
RockHound
QUOTE(KentuckyCampin @ Jul 18 2009, 09:22 PM) *

We have a Gulfstream Mini SL hybrid. It is the 23GBH. It has one drop out on the left rear corner, dinette that turns into a king size bed and bunkbeds. As far as the room we upgraded from a 1981 Palomino Mustang XL hardside. It was a large pop up and we just outgrew it. The Gulfstream is a nice camper, but there are a couple of things you should consider when buying a hybrid, or any other travel trail.
This list are things one should consider:
1. counter top space - make sure you figure on things like coffee pot, preparation space, etc..
2. double kitchen sink - nice to do dishes in a double sink, and not the little mini single sink stuck in many campers.
3. Shower/toilet - I have the combination shower/toilet, and wish we had a normal shower. Having a shower in the camper is nice, but a seperate shower/toilet would be nicer!!
4. Cabinet space for pots and pans and things you use frequently while camping!!! More space that is accessible without lifting seats/opening outside doors is a plus.
5. Hybrid drop down - Two drawbacks to the hybrid trailers is noise and leaks. It is just like a pop up when it comes to the noise in the campground. We have a fold out on the side, and we have slept in it maybe 2 times due to the noise in campgrounds. And also the seal leaks on our door. Every time it rains I have to open it up and dry it out. A new seal is supposed to be on order from Gulfstream to fix this.
If I had it to do over again, I would not have bought a hybrid, as I have not used the fold out very often, and it limits the other space I could have had in that area of the camper that normally would be used for storage etc...
6. Single axle vs. tandem axle - go with a tandem axle, they tow a heck of alot better than single axle. My Mini SL tows fine with my chevy truck, but it has the Z71 suspension. However to tow it with my Tahoe, I had to purchase a load distribution hitch and an anti-sway control. And my Tahoe is 4X4 as well, just does not have the Z71 suspension and is alot softer ride than my truck.

As far as set up, the Mini SL is alot faster to set up than my old pop up. I can be completely set up in about 20 minutes, this includes leveling, water hook up, electric hook up, awning out and hot water heater running. I have used my camper quite a bit, and once you get it down to a science, it is no problem!!

Gas mileage did change. I went from around 15 mpg - pop up, to 10 mpg with the Mini SL. That is both the Tahoe and pick up.

Canvas is the same material that pop ups use.

Heating is no problem, we camped last october in 40 F temps at night, and the heater kept the camper nice and toasty.
Hope this helps!!!

Thanks for the response. Attempts to help are ALWAYS appreciated. We will weigh the many differences with our needs when the time comes to trade. I like the sleeping space of a pop up. You just can't find a small camper with as much sleeping space, and not have to fold down a table or fold out a couch. I like the ease of towing and GAS MILAGE. I like the large trunk storage on the front. You never really see this on travel trailers. What I don't like is the set up/take down, especially in the 90-degree heat. I don't like the mildew problems with the canvas. Looks like this would still be a problem with a hybrid. I don't like being limited to camping in warm places or warm times of the year. Although the beach is our favorite destination, we want to see the whole country. I don't like the noise issue at some campgrounds. While I love the sound of birds, insects, streams, ocean waves, etc., I hate being able to hear other peoples conversations, music and the like at all hours of the day and night. This, again, would still be an issue with a hybrid. I guess our main draw to hybrids is their midrange size with the pop up sleeping space and no table or couch take down/set up, but travel trailer bathroom, kitchen, and easier set up.
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