A Tale of Two Shastas

Shasta has been synonymous with small, lightweight travel trailers since the 1950’s. With their classic rear wings and distinctive paint designs, Shasta was the top selling small trailer throughout the 50’s & 60’s.

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Fast-forward to 2009. Parent company of Shasta, Coachmen, reintroduced a retro designed Shasta Airflyte 12.

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At 17′ from hitch to tail, the 2009 Airflyte offered a sleek interior with a flash of European flair.

However, the 2009 Shasta Airflyte would be short lived. With just over 100 produced, the plug was pulled on the Airflyte. Sales likely weren’t construed as “brisk”. One big reason was the Airflyte was all electric, no propane. That’s fine if you’re at a campground where there’s always electricity. But it would eliminate the possibility of camping off the grid, or boondocking as it’s often called.  However, the other big reason of its demise is that Coachmen had been absorbed by Forest River, who already had a lightweight, retro-styled trailer in the r-Pod.

And with that, the 2009 Shasta Airflyte was gone as quickly as it came back. Or was it? In the summer of 2011, two 2012 Coachmen Shasta Airflytes showed up on a few online RV classified websites. Both trailers were for sale at Clem’s RV & Trailer Sales in Ellwood City, PA.  When contacted through Facebook, Clem’s wrote back:

“We have the only 2 produced for the 2012 models. They were discontnued as we know after 2009 models. When Coachmen looked in the plant here this summer they realized they had enough product left to build TWO units only and they would be the last 2 ever produced!! We sold 40 of the 2009s and has the oldest Coachmen dealer in the nation we were offered the 2 models.

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So there you have it. Possibly the last two new Shasta Airflytes that you’ll ever see.

17 Comments

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17 Responses to A Tale of Two Shastas

  1. Terry

    I think this new blog is a wonderful accomplishment for you Pat and Jennifer and I will really enjoy any news you are posting I am sure! Good job! Travel on! :)

  2. Robert

    Your final photo of the Shasta is not of the 2009 Airflyte 12 but of the Shasta Airflyte 16. The tip off is that the Airflyte 16 has propane – as your photo shows – and the Airflyte 12 does not. Also, the Airflyte 16 is longer.
    The two Airflyte 16’s that you mention might be the only two ever manufactured. I have seen no mention of Airflyte 16’s sold prior to 2012.
    We own an Airflyte 12 and really like it. It draws lookers and we give many tours.
    I have been trying to learn the total number of Airflyte 12’s manufactured and have seen two figures, 114 and “around 180” for those manufactured in 2009.
    I have seen advertised sales for 2011 Airflyte 12’s and I speculate that, as with the 2012 Airflyte 16’s, the 2011 Airflyte 12’s were assembled from left over parts after manufacturing otherwise had stopped.
    If anyone knows the exact production numbers for the Airflyte 12 and 16 I would like to know them.

  3. Nancy H

    We own an Airflyte 12, no one believes it’s a real “Shasta”. We truly enjoy ours. We’ve only heard that 112-114 were made, but never anything official.

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  5. I’m surprised they didn’t sell like hot cakes. I am in the process of re-doing a 1972 Frolic (which I’ve dubbed the Pink Paradise). I am in love with vintage campers and love your site. We just went to a Vintage Camper Rally here in the Finger Lakes this weekend. Check out my post!

  6. Just getting strted. Have not decided what I am going to buy. I know it needs to be used, and a low price. I am a single woman. I am researching life on the road!

    • Lisa

      I too am looking into purchasing. I am recently widowed and would like something small and used. Not looking for life on the road but lots of adventures. Always loved camping but getting too old for a tent. Let me know what you find.

  7. Sue Knowles

    I too have a 2009 Shasta 12 Airflyte. The dealer I purchased from told me they only made 104. I do disagree with Robert about the Airflyte 12 being all electric. Mine uses both gas & electric. The gas heats and runs the fridge when not plugged into electric. I too get to “show off” our little gem wherever I go! Unfortunately we recently lost our spare tire cover with the Shasta name and can’t find a replacement.

  8. Bob Norman

    How do you convert the table to a bed? Just got one and can’t figure it out!

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  10. Pat Chastain

    Keep in mind this trailer came out in the fall of 2008, just as the economy crashed. The RV market in general went into a tailspin. I attribute that to this product’s demise as much as anything. I own one and love it. Selling it now b/c I need something a little bigger. Kids keep growing on me.

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  12. Nancy Sells

    I was recently given a Shasta Astrodome. I need info to determine its “made” date. Read on another blog that they were made in ’62 ’63 and ’64. Saw a pic. online of one at a rally supposedly a ’61. How do I find accurate information? Mine has a single seat across the front with two tables that fold up on each side in front of couch, not the two banquette seats with folding table. Also need pics of interior to see what is original. Mine does not appear to have any add on’s inside or out.Thanks.

    • Pat

      Nancy – Are you on Facebook? If so, I’d suggest joining the Vintage Shasta Trailers group. They have nearly 4,000 members on there and would be an excellent source of information.

      If you’re not on Facebook, do visit Tin Can Tourists: http://tincantourists.com. Explore the site and look for the section under RVs and Trailers. There is a section that helps identify your trailer, or also contact them for assistance.

      Sorry I can’t be of a lot of help when it comes to vintage trailers, as I tend to focus on newer small trailers. I still do what I can to help those who ask me for assistance with a vintage trailer they have.

  13. Ron

    Just purchased s 12′ 2009 today that appesrs to be new. There is not a discernible mark on it anywhere, Even underneath the frame and suspension is as shines as a new penny. Paid $14,000-amazing considering its age and original sales price-and are happy with the deal. We look forward to showing it off-our old/new trailer. By the way, it includes an external portable on-demand instant water heater(propane powered) made by Triton that just ads to the charm.

  14. Adam Scheuerman

    We just bought a 2009 but it didn’t come with a manual and I’m having a hard time finding one online. Any suggestions?

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