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2018 RV Manufacturers Open House recap

This years RV manufacturers open house in Elkhart, Indiana offered a lot of the same small trailer floorplans that we all know and love, but as usual there were some new introductions as well. Despite some heavy rains on Tuesday that made parts of the display areas quite the swamp, I covered just about everyone I found with the exception of Winnebago, which I’ve been told had nothing new but a narrow bodied fifth wheel. I was fortunate to get inside the Forest River display this year, thanks to Cody Schade with the No Boundaries/R-pod division. I’m going to touch briefly on some of the new and/or updated offerings I saw. Down the road I’ll likely feature a few of these for more of an in depth analysis.

KZ RV had one new floorplan that caught my eye. The Escape E191SS is a narrow bodied with a super slide which supports a dinette as well as a sofa. If this floorplan looks familiar, Cherokee’s Wolf Pup 18TO has this same general floorplan, which came out last year. One stark difference in the two is the back wall. The Wolf Pup leaves the wall open to mount a TV, but the Escape utilizes the back wall for storage cabinets, which is a smart choice considering the overall design limits the amount of places where storage can be engineered into the trailer. Specs on the Escape 191SS can be found here: https://www.kz-rv.com/products/escape-travel-trailers/E191SS.html

At the Jayco display, there were just two Hummingbirds on display: a “box drop” and a larger sized unit. I really liked the floorplan of the larger 17MBS. It’s a murphy bed with a dry bath that shares the back wall with the rear kitchen, and a slide out for the fridge, microwave, and pantry. This is a nice and tidy floorplan. It gives you the flexibility of the murphy bed that, when not in the sofa configuration, converts into a 60″x75″ queen bed. One stand out feature of the Hummingbird 17MBS is the excellent interior storage. More info can be found on the Jayco website here: https://www.jayco.com/products/travel-trailers/2019-hummingbird/17mbs/

At the Gulf Stream display, there were more than enough Vintage Cruisers to go around, as they’re still popular and they show no signs of slowing down. Also on hand in its 2nd year is the Capri, with the addition of baby moons and colored rims instead of last years aluminum rims. Of note, Gulf Stream now offers a 3 year structural warranty. Details on both units can be found at the Gulf Stream website here: https://www.gulfstreamcoach.com/products/light-weight/vintage-cruiser and here: https://www.gulfstreamcoach.com/products/light-weight/capri

At the Little Guy display, there were a handful of Little Guy Max and Mini Max models, as well as one myPod. I was informed by Little Guy owner Joe Kicos that they’re in fine-tuning mode with both models. Their efforts seem to be working as I got an unsolicited comment from one dealer indicating how much they’ve improved since he saw them at the open house in 2017. And that walnut interior option in either model is starting to grow on me. More info can be found on the Little Guy website at https://golittleguy.com

At the inTech RV display, the star of the show was the new Sol. They hustled to get it ready for the show, as the prototype was still being put together the week prior. But that said, it was done and looks like it’s going to be a jaw dropper. It’s not on their website yet, so I don’t have any specs to pass on, but it’s in that 18′-20′ range. The craftsmenship is very good on all the inTech products, including their smaller Flyer and Luna lines. I realized when I was going through display and opening and closing doors and hatches that they remind me a lot of the Camp Lite trailers did several years ago prior to being absorbed by Thor which ultimately killed the brand last year. I always viewed them as one of the best trailers that no one knew about, and inTech has that same feel. However, people are starting to know about them rather quickly.  While the Sol is not currently on their website, it will be soon, so check back there in the weeks to come for more specs and features at http://www.intechrv.com.

The Hymer Touring GT is something I first saw a couple years ago at the Louisville RVIA show. It was nowhere to be found last year at Louisville, but has made its triumphant return at this years open house. News of this over the past couple of years has been sparse, but that should now change as recently it was announced that Thor will be acquiring the Hymer brand. The Touring GT is just about the same as I remember it. It’s definitely a high quality unit, as the upper $20k’s price will indicate. It has the roof that pops up for about a foot of additional head room. It’s light weight at 2500 lbs and total length is just under 19′. More info on the Hymer Touring GT can be found here: https://www.gohymer.com/touring-gt-overview/

At the Aliner display, I was really pleased to see what they’ve done with the Ascape model, as the recently introduced Great Ascape made its debut. The Great Ascape has it all. Previous models of the Ascape has had bits & pieces of various features, but the Great Ascape puts them all together in one floorplan. Hats off! After the shower model came out last year, I was hoping a floorplan would come out that had all the features anyone would want, and that has happened with the Great Ascape and then some. Not only did they include everything such as the TV with soundbar, wet bath, microwave, sink, range, and refrigerator, but they’ve also increased the width some 9″, which despite not being a lot,  makes a big difference. The bed set-up is diverse as well. You can leave it as two twin beds, or convert it to a huge 77″x64″.  To learn more, click on their website here: http://aliner.com/campers/great-ascape-st-shower-model/

At the Lance display, the 1475 and the 1575 continue to shine. The 1575 is still one of my favorite small trailer floor plans with the huge U-shaped slide dinette. And the 1475 still offers the optional sofa slide. Both units are well under 3,000 lbs, making them some of the lightest weight trailers you’ll find with exceptional quality. To learn more about Lance’s trailer lines, visit their website here: https://www.lancecamper.com/travel-trailers

At the nuCamp RV display, it was no secret the push was for the Boondock option of their trailers. The offroad package was featured on the T@G, T@B Clamshell, T@B 320, and T@B 400 and is available in the Lite or Edge package. The Boondock Edge features a Yakima roof rack, 52″ light bar with two spot lights, as well as Marmoleum flooring. Info on the Boondock editions can be found on the nuCamp website at https://tab.nucamprv.com/tab-teardrop-camper/?package=1

I encountered a very nice surprise when I came across the CRUX Expedition Trailers display. The CRUX is that off the beaten path trailer designed for those you won’t likely see next to you at your local state park. The only time you’ll likely see one in the wild is on the highway while it heads to its destination somewhere in the mountains or forests, far from civilization. That’s where this kind of trailer is designed to be, and where those likely to own one want to be. It comes with a wide range of tent options from basic to elaborate, measuring up to 200 square feet. What’s nice about it is that all tents come standard with each trailer. You just pick when configuration you want to set up each time you take it out on your adventure. Can’t say enough good things about what these passionate folks at CRUX are putting together! To learn more, visit the CRUX website at https://www.cruxexpeditiontrailers.com/crux-1600/

This year I was able secure entry in the Forest River compound. A big thanks go out to Cody Schade, manager for the R-pod/No Boundaries division of Forest River for getting me in this year. And with that, let’s talk about R-pod and No Boundaries. I got word of a new R-pod RP191. Never before in this oversized teardrop segment of the small trailer industry have we seen one with dedicated twin beds, which is quickly becoming a desired feature in a travel trailer, especially among older couples. But R-pod has created a big winner with this floor plan, which I’m pretty sure the competition will mimic in short order. The two beds have a night stand centered in between them. The RP191 features a kitchen slide, with a good sized U-shaped rear dinette that converts to a bed for additional sleeping quarters. The decision to go with the smaller wet bath creates a lot more floor space, which in a footprint this small creates a much larger feel inside, which comes in handy when you’re camping with more than two people. At 20’4″ total length, the RP-191 checks in weighing at under 2700 lbs with a generous 1100-plus lbs cargo carrying  capacity I really like this one. You can find out about this and other R-pod floorplans at http://www.forestriverinc.com/product-details.aspx?LineID=173&Image=5054&ShowParent=1&ModelID=4227#Main

 

The No Boundaries (No Bo) line has been on the scene since last year. It’s a line that gives you the flexibility to camp comfortably in some of those areas where you couldn’t and/or wouldn’t typically tow a conventional trailer. Ranging from 10′ “box drop” trailers to bunkhouses that are over 23′ long, there’s a wide range of camping needs that the No Bo can fulfill. The lightweight construction allows for a wide range of 4 and 6 cylinder tow vehicles to pull these. You’ll also have optional roof racks from Rhino Racks that can handle kayaks, bikes, skis, and other outdoors equipment. While the exterior has an outdoorsy feel, the interior gives you a nice contrast to a more conventional look that will make you forget you may be out in the wild, isolated from any camping neighbors. I took a good look at the bunkhouse 19.7. As the owner of a bunkhouse of another brand, I can say the No Bo 19.7 offered some really nice interior features that would make a comfortable camping weekend. I’ll be looking to feature these on a future post, as they’re going to quickly be player in this off road, adventure camping segment that is exploding. To learn more about the No Boundaries line of trailers, visit their website at http://www.forestriverinc.com/travel-trailers/no-boundaries

A big change recently occurred with the 2019 Shasta RV models. Prior to the ’19 models, there were two lines of Shasta: The entry level Oasis and the fancier Revere. Shasta has streamlined things a bit, eliminated both the Oasis and Revere names and blended the two into a line that is simply called “Shasta”. The price points appear to be closer to that of the Oasis, but you get a lot of new features the Oasis didn’t have, such as tub surrounds, mirrored wardrobes, and tiled backsplashes. Also gone are the familiar tans and browns on the exterior, replaced with grays and blues, which seems to be the trend these days with other manufacturers. As a Shasta Oasis owner of a 2016 18BH, I’ve been pleased with our little entry level bunkhouse that we’ve had for 3 camping seasons now. And I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a tad bit jealous of the accoutrements the new Shastas offer. You can view the specs and features of the revamped Shasta at their website: http://shastarving.com/travel-trailers/shasta

As my day at the open house wore on, I was texting with my comrade Josh Winters, aka “Josh the RV Nerd” of Haylett RV of Coldwater, Michigan, the king of the RV walk through video. Josh has done literally thousands of walk through videos over the years and has seen just about everything. So when he tells me there’s a model I need to look at, I listen. That model is the Cherokee Wolf Pup 16PF. And this floorplan does not disappoint. I see this as putting a huge dent in the popular Wolf Pup 16FQ. I’ll just be upfront with this thing: It gives me trailer envy. ‘Nuff said. There’s not any info on the Wolf Pup website on the 16PF, but keep checking their website for when it shows up: http://www.forestriverinc.com/product-details.aspx?LineID=177&Image=5038&ShowParent=1

Towards the end of my day, I made my way to the Flagstaff E-Pro/ Rockwood Geo Pro area. They’re essentially the same trailer with different badging. The E-Pro that I focused on is the Flagstaff E-Pro 15TB. Love this one! This is a modified…and better…version of the 14RK. The 15TB enables you to have the luxury of two twin beds or convert them into a monster king bed. There’s a tidy wet bath next to the front kitchen. This is a great floorplan for the single or couples campers who don’t need even a 22′ trailer to camp comfortably. This is ideal for the lower tow capacity tow vehicles, with a dry weight of under 2500 lbs. Construction on the E-Pro/Geo Pro lines are excellent, with aluminum framed construction and Azdel wall paneling. This floorplan is nice and cozy that gives you all the amenities you need in a tidy little package. Josh did me a favor by doing a walk through on a Geo Pro version that Haylett RV just got in. As I mentioned, the E-Pro is essentially the same thing, so if you’re interested in this floorplan give our friends at Haylett a call and make that trek to southern Michigan!

http://www.forestriverinc.com/travel-trailers/flagstaff-e-pro

 

As late afternoon and a 3 hour drive back home loomed, the 7 hours of walking had taking their toll on my barking dogs. But on my way out of Forest River, I noticed this little gizmo in the Viking camper display. My apologies for not getting a model number off this, as it’s not on the Viking website, but I still think it’s too cool not to share. My guess it’s around 10′-ish long and around 1,000 lbs, or less. But this little micro pop-up packs a punch. It’s got what appears to be a double to queen bed, based on the width of the trailer. But it’s got a propane grill, A/C, furnace, and fridge, as well as some storage cabinets. If you want simple, lightweight camping with a few amenities that likely won’t break the bank, this thing might be up your alley. Keep an eye on the Viking website when this little fella makes its appearance on there: http://coachmenrv.com/product-details.aspx?LineID=67&Image=6738

 

 

So that wraps up my day in Elkhart. There are a lot of offerings in the small trailer segment of the industry. I’ve only highlighted some of the new and unique models for 2019. The mainstay floorplans in the 3,000 lbs and under range are still out there that you’re familiar with. Small trailers are one of the fastest growing segments in the industry as a new generation of RVers enter the market with a different mindset than previous generations. They’re a little more adventure-minded and desire a different style of camping. As it has been the past few years, it’s a GREAT time to be a small trailer enthusiast with the new and innovative models and floorplans the industry is producing. And if you’re reading this website for the first time, don’t forget to look over our Manufacturers page for a comprehensive list of all sorts of small trailers: http://smalltrailerenthusiast.com/manufacturers-2/

 

 

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Little Guy transformation kicks off with the Max

 

The report of my death was an exaggeration. – Mark Twain

That famed quote by Mark Twain in a letter he wrote in 1897 is something that popped into my head on the drive back home to Indiana recently after visiting Liberty Outdoors’ facility in Somerset, Pennsylvania. For after the split of Little Guy Worldwide (now Liberty Outdoors) with longtime manufacturer Pleasant Valley Teardrops (now nuCamp RV), a lot of people left the Little Guy team for dead.

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Destined to become more than just a teardrop marketer, Little Guy entered the arena of manufacturing, something quite new to them. With the recently acquired rights to the Serro Scotty brand, Little Guy formed an alliance with Gulf Stream to manufacture an “everyman’s camper” in the Serro Scotty. The Scotty took a beating on the internet, and especially in the vintage Serro Scotty community, due to its perceived lack of styling with its standard travel trailer boxiness prevalent in the industry today. Little Guy assured everyone that this was just the first wave, and more products were yet to come that would be more in line with their roots that they would manufacture themselves.

That day has come.

Fresh from their own plant in Somerset, Pennsylvania, comes the Little Guy Max.

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The Max is just the first of many new lines you’ll be seeing coming out of the plant in Somerset over the next two years. And based on my first hand observations of the Max last month, the product offerings from Little Guy will undoubtedly set the small trailer community on its ear. But until then, let’s first take a look at the Max.

I met Little Guy Director of Operations, Dylan DeHoff, at the Liberty Outdoors Somerset plant one Wednesday morning last month. Along with Dylan to meet me was a celebrity in the world of camping podcasts, Janine Pettit of the Girl Camper podcast. Janine was lucky enough to be taking the 3rd Max built back to her home in New Jersey, as she was going to do some hands on critiquing of the Max for Little Guy on a 4 week trip out west starting this month.

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Janine and Dylan took me on a tour of hers before she took it back to New Jersey. The first thing you notice when you first step into the 21′ Max is the incredibly open feel, due in part to the seven dual paned windows throughout, including a window in the door that opens up for additional airflow. IMG_6686[1]

There are also two windows in the rear of the Max that also open, including the vertical window above the spacious 60″ x 80″ queen bed, with a mattress locally made exclusively for Little Guy.

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If there’s one word that really defines the Max it would have to be space. You really feel the space in the actual physical size of the Max, including an impressive 6’7″ ceiling height. In addition,  the light tones of the real maple hardwood cabinetry open it up to create such a refreshing environment that’ll rival the great outdoors for your time spent camping.

lg max4Space is also highlighted in the form of storage space. And for a trailer of this size, I don’t recall anything have the storage, and it’s smart storage, as the Max. A total of two pantries, a deep drawer below the fridge, storage below both the queen bed and the front dinette, as well as three kitchen drawers, and overhead cabinets and cubby holes at every turn.

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This doesn’t even cover the storage under and around the front dinette either, which there is plenty there as well. You’ll notice in the photo above the 24″ Furrion TV at the foot of the bed. There’s also another Furrion TV concealed at the front dinette that opens up with the press of a button. That front dinette also folds down to make a single bed, as typical in most RVs.

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As for construction, the Max is built quite a bit sturdier than your typical trailer in this class. First, it sits on a tubular steel frame that is powder coated to automotive standards. As is the case with most of the components Little Guy uses in production, the frames are locally built. The cage is aluminum and insulated with block foam insulation and covered by Azdel paneling. The one piece fiberglass roof and sidewalls can come in either a white or silver base, with exterior trim in your choice of black, silver, or red.

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The floor is made of a 3/4″ thick product called PerforMAX 500, which is a wood product engineered to better withstand moisture and be more stronger and stable than plywood.

performax500The construction really shines especially in the cabinetry. The dovetail construction used throughout is something you just don’t see much in the industry. I learned during my visit there that they’re building trailers to last you a long, long time. They have the confidence in their trailers that they’ve put a standard 2 year warranty on them, which in the industry is still the exception.

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As for bathroom facilities, the Max has a wet bath with a height of a generous 6’2″, giving ample headroom for most. It also includes a full size multi-speed fan, which is a rarity when it comes to trailer bathroom vents. lg max10

The standards on the Max are plenty, and things you wouldn’t even see as options on other trailers in this class. As for some of the exterior features, they include a 6’3″ Thule awning with LED light strip, 2″ rear receiver for the optional bike rack, 15″ aluminum wheels, sliding screen door, exterior speakers and TV mount, pass through storage with slam latch doors, illuminated aluminum entry step and illuminated grab handle.

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On the inside of the Max, you’ll find (aside from those features already mentioned), an 8″ deep stainless steel kitchen sink with residential style high rise faucet with sprayer, a flush mounted 2 burner gas stove with glass top, a stainless steel microwave, stainless steel 4 cubic foot stainless steel refrigerator, 13,500 BTU roof mount air conditioner, traditional 6 gallon Dometic hot water heater, LED touch screen and switch panel for monitoring tanks and lighting controls, LED lighting throughout including various accent lighting above cabinets, and Furrion Stereo, Bluetooth, MP3, MP4, DVD.

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As for standard specifications, the Max checks in with a dry weight of 2,900 lbs, tongue weight of 281 lbs, and is an even 21 feet long. The holding tanks are 20 gallon fresh water, 14 gallon gray water, and 9 gallon black water. Overall width is 7 feet and height comes in at 9’1″. There’s also an optional Rough Rider package you can buy that gives you a 3.5″ axle lift, black diamond plate, and 15″ matte black off road wheels and tires.

The options on the Max are four: solar panel, bike rack, power tongue jack, and stained cabinetry, if you want your interior a little darker.

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Even though I’ve given you a lot of information here, chances are I’m probably forgetting a few things, which is testament to how loaded this “little guy” really is. It packs a feature punch that honestly I’ve not seen in a trailer this size in the years I’ve been doing this. While some will balk at the $29,999 MSRP, once you see one for yourself, you’ll soon realize that you’re not going to really find much on the level of the Max’s build quality and features. And that MSRP isn’t as high as other similar high end trailers within its size range. And from my visit to their factory, I would consider the Max a high end trailer that will last you many, many good camping years…and look pretty cool rolling into the campground to boot.

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I asked Janine a week after she took to the Max what her impressions were of it and she told me, “Liberty Outdoors just raised the bar in the light weight towable market with their Little Guy Max. It’s built to an exacting standard, thoughtfully designed and affordable. It’s a win, win, win for all RV enthusiasts.”

Based on what I saw of the Max and the other projects set to come online in the next year, that bar will be raised even higher.  Their story is just beginning.

To find out more of the Little Guy Max, visit their website at http://golittleguy.com/lg-max/

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Pleasant Valley Teardrops Sets Its Own Path as nüCamp

As the news of last month bombshell announcement of Little Guy Worldwide and Pleasant Valley Teardrops’ split set the small trailer segment of the RV industry on its ear, we’re now hearing from the Pleasant Valley side of things. After Little Guy Worldwide told of their future in July , we’re now hearing from Pleasant Valley Teardrops, who up until now were manufacturers.

In a press release today, Pleasant Valley CEO Scott Hubble stated, “Frankly, I never envisioned a future without Little Guy— personally or professionally. However, given the situation, we wish our friends at Little Guy Worldwide nothing but the greatest success both now, as partners, and in the future, as they embark on an exciting new path. We believe that this segment of the market will continue to grow, thereby offering both companies an opportunity to collaborate and create synergies with other niche OEMs.”

To rehash why the split occurred, discussions began to consolidate Pleasant Valley Teardrops and Little Guy Worldwide into one company. However, due to differing objectives of each company, it was decided to part ways when their contract expires in April 2017. Enter nüCamp RV.

nucampWith Pleasant Valley now moving on without the marketing and distributi0n savvy of Little Guy by their side, they are starting anew in name as well. Pleasant Valley Trailers has recently adopted the nüCamp RV brand name for use in day-to-day operations. The company will use this new name alongside the Pleasant Valley Teardrop Trailers brand through the end of 2017 in an effort to ease the transition to the new brand. Hubble reiterated that nüCamp RV is Pleasant Valley Teardrop Trailers—just operating under a new name. The nüCamp RV website is located at http://www.nucamprv.com and will continue to be developed over the upcoming months as the company incorporates all of its product lines under the umbrella of this single site.

 

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nüCamp RV is the owner of the T@B teardrop travel trailer, which was acquired from Dutchmen RV in 2011, as well as the T@G: a teardrop trailer Pleasant Teardrop Trailers Valley developed in 2013. nüCamp RV will continue manufacturing these extremely popular lines of recreational vehicles and will continue supporting their very loyal base of T@B and T@G customers.

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Pleasant Valley expects to produce more than 3,500 campers in 2016, representing substantial year-over-year growth for the past five years. “Our company has responded to the explosive growth in the small trailer segment of the recreational vehicle industry by expanding our manufacturing facility in Sugarcreek, Ohio—the heart of Ohio’s Amish Country – by an additional 91,000 square feet,” reports Hubble. “We employ some of the most highly skilled craftsmenand craftswomen in the world, and their continued dedication to quality is renowned in the industry. This is our second plant expansion in three years, and we continue to manage this growth through a dedication to the core principles upon which our company was founded.”

As 2017 rolls around and the separation of nüCamp and Little Guy is complete, I’ll be watching to see how well nüCamp manages the marketing aspect of the business, previously handled by Little Guy. There’ll be a few growing pains, as I’m sure Little Guy will also find out as it ventures into manufacturing. But the real hope of those who’ve been fans of the Little Guy/Pleasant Valley marriage is that both will find success along their respective paths. But with a loyal legion of owners spreading goodwill on nüCamp’s behalf, I’m pretty sure they’ll be just fine. If you’d like to find out firsthand, Hubble states, “nüCamp is delighted to host current and prospective customers as well as dealers and prospective dealers at their facility in Sugarcreek, Ohio to see firsthand how they are reinventingthe recreational vehicle industry one camper at a time.”

To find out more about nüCamp, visit their website at http://nucamprv.com.

 

 

 

 

 

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And Now a Word from Our Sponsor(s)

The Small Trailer Enthusiast last week welcomed not one, but two new partners on the web site. Little Guy Worldwide and their online store, The Teardrop Shop, now can be found along the right side of each page you visit on this web site.

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Little Guy needs no introduction to the vast majority of you reading this. They’ve been the preeminent teardrop trailer company in the U.S. for several years, and continue to expand. Formed in 2002 in North Canton, Ohio, Little Guy markets and distributes the more than 2,000 trailers a year built by Pleasant Valley Teardrop Trailers in a 65,000 square foot facility in Sugarcreek, Ohio.

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(photo courtesy rvbusiness.com)

Those 2,000-some units built in the past year include the original Little Guy 4-Wide, 5-Wide, and 6-Wide Platform…

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The 5 Wide and 6 Wide off road Rough Rider…

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The 5’x8′, 5’x10′, and 6’x10′ Silver Shadow…

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The lightweight, fiberglass molded myPod…

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The aluminum framed T@G…

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And the ever popular T@B…

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Little Guy is quickly becoming known throughout the RV ownership community as a company that works closely with the owners of their trailers. One example is with the owners of T@Bs built by its previous builder, Dutchmen. When Dutchmen ceased production of the T@B in 2009, Little Guy picked up the torch in 2011 and has continued production of the T@B, all while welcoming the Dutchmen T@B owners within the Little Guy family. Many of the parts on the Little Guy built T@B have parts that can be used on the Dutchmen versions. And compared to the Dutchmen T@Bs, Little Guy has appeared to have dialed in and raised the bar in overall quality of the units produced.

And if a fine array of small trailers weren’t enough, Little Guy has recently released a line of truck campers called the Cirrus.

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You’ll also find a link to Little Guy’s online store, The Teardrop Shop, on each page on The Small Trailer Enthusiast. I’ve spent a good amount of time on their website, http://teardropshop.com, and I’ve been very impressed with the wide range of trailer parts, camping gear, and other camping accessories from well respected brands such as Paha Que, Coleman, Yakima, and Zamp Solar. There are many accessories specific to Little Guy products, such as T@B awnings and tent rooms, but the majority of their products and accessories are suitable for RVers from the smallest teardrop to the largest motorhome. The Teardrop Shop web site is laid out very well among several categories and is incredibly easy to navigate.

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Little Guy has a huge following on social media, with just under 100,000 on their Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/golittleguy) and over 3,000 followers on Twitter (https://twitter.com/golittleguy) You’ll find the website for Little Guy (http://golittleguy.com) and The Teardrop Shop (http://teardropshop.com) are easy to navigate and both provide great product detail.

And finally, special thanks go to Little Guy Worldwide owner and president Joe Kicos for helping support The Small Trailer Enthusiast, and I’d ask each of you to visit both web sites and give them your support as well!

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Little Guy debuts T@G and myPod at Hershey show

As I hinted at in late August, Little Guy Worldwide this week debuted the T@G teardrop and the myPod molded fiberglass trailer at America’s Largest RV Show in Hershey, Pennsylvania. The T@G will have optional TV, air conditioning, and refrigerator & freezer. It comes standard with a queen size bed, 2 side doors, 2 side windows, a galley, and fan. With options (including the battery), the T@G checks in at 1.025 lbs and 875 lbs without options. The MSRP is $8,995 and production will start in November. No specs to report on the myPod other than the base weight without options is just over 500 lbs.

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Manufacturer’s Update: Little Guy Worldwide

Fresh off the heels of the highly successful “Rolling Home” rally for T@Bs and Little Guy teardrops, Little Guy Worldwide VP of Sales Dylan DeHoff tells us things are are moving along very well with the Ohio based teardrop trailer manufacturer. First, total sales of all models are up a whopping 130% from 2012, with nearly 1,500 units to be produced in 2013.

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Look for upgrades in the T@B for 2014. Among them is the addition of the Alde 110-LP Water Heater & Central Heating unit, which replaces both the furnace and water heater with the one single unit. Benefits of the Alde unit is that it distributes heat evenly around, is extremely quiet, has programmable controls, and has a 93% efficiency equivalent. Starting in 2014, this will be the standard heating device in T@Bs.

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Other changes for 2014 include

  • S and CS-S Models:  Equipped with 6 gallon black tank in addition to 19 gallon gray.
  • Italian SMEV Stove. Inset, Hinged 2 Burner stove with Glass Cover
  • Electric Brakes replace hydraulic brakes

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Coming some time in September will be the introduction of two new models: The T@G and the myPod. There’s no indication yet what the T@G will look like, but as Dylan tells it, “It’s a true “tweener” between the T@B and the Little Guy, with modern, T@B-inspired, European lines.” There currently aren’t any images available of the T@G, however Dutchmen also created a T@G around 2009 that never advanced any farther than the prototype stage, which was really nothing more than a teardrop trailer without any kind of galley. So right now there isn’t enough info to warrant a guess as to whether or not this is what it’ll look like.

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As for the myPod, I think it’s safe to say what it’ll look like, as Little Guy gave a sneak peak on their Facebook page back in February. The myPod will have a “futuristic”, 100% fiberglass molded, rear loading galley-free design. It will be available in several colors including the option to match a particular paint code. It will also boast an optional roof rack, entertainment center, and air conditioning unit.

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As always, we’ll have more on all of this info as it develops.

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Little Guy concept trailer revealed

Little Guy Worldwide gave a sneak peak of its latest addition to its lineup on its Facebook page today. The yet to be named trailer will check in at around 500 lbs and will be a sleeping trailer only. It’s light enough to be hauled by a trike or sub-compact car, but will be void of any kitchen or cooking area. It can come in any color and can be available with a roof rack, air conditioning, and 19″ TV/DVD AM/FM stereo combo. No pricing info was given, but the unit should be formally introduced sometime this summer.

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“Doomsday Preppers” teardrop trailer debuts at RVIA trade show

Little Guy Worldwide and Tim Ralston of National Geographic Channel’s “Doomsday Preppers” have teamed up to create that perfect camping experience in the event of an apocalyptic catastrophe. Called the “B.O.S.S.” (Bug Out Survival Shelter), this off-road Little Guy teardrop is built with the doomsday survivor in mind. The B.O.S.S. is equipped with a sink and stove, gun rack, four panels in the floor for additional interior storage, ramps with a front platform, and additional survivor amenities designed for off the grid survival.

Tim Ralston (on the right in the picture directly above) was on hand at the 50th Annual RVIA trade show in Louisville on November 27 for the unveiling of the B.O.S.S. No retail prices have been announced as of yet, but they will only be available through Ralston’s website (not on the site as of this posting) at http://timralston.com.

More on Ralston can be seen in this interview:

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More on the Little Guy & Yuengling sweepstakes

We’ve been receiving a lot of hits on The Small Trailer Enthusiast since we first posted about the sweepstakes with Little Guy and Yuengling back in August.

Entries for the contest close on October 31, 2012 and the winner will be drawn on November 6. Here’s a video from Little Guy Worldwide’s Chris Baum with a little more on the Little Guy 5-wide platform that will be awarded to the lucky winner. You must be an Ohio resident to win.

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Little Guy Brings Back Two T@B Floor Plans

Starting April 1, Little Guy Worldwide will be taking orders for two new floor plans for their highly popular T@B. The floor plans aren’t actually new, per se. They’re two floor plans previous T@B builder Dutchmen used. Both will utilize the “L” shaped front kitchen galley. The difference among the two will be the dinette. One will have vertical floor to ceiling cabinets on the back wall with a smaller dinette, which measures 70″ X 58″ when in bed format.

The queen bed “L” kitchen format will feature a “U” shaped dinette that converts to a 70″ X 73″ queen bed. As a former owner of a Dutchmen T@B with this floor plan, and having seen them all, I can honestly say this floor plan is the best one of them all. You get a nice sized kitchen counter and the comforts of a queen sized bed.

An option on the L and Q models will be the Stargazer front window, like those optional on Little Guy’s teardrop line. This is a slight difference from Dutchmen in that it’s a stationary window and a little more narrow, but should still give ample daylight to the front counter.

All three floor plans with descriptions can be found by clicking here: floor_plans[1]

For more info, contact Little Guy Worldwide at http://tab-rv.com.

 

 

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