When you’re going on adventures, Airstream is an expert manufacturer of different trailers. Some of their trailers, like the Nest and the Basecamp, come in miniature sizes. A miniature trailer is more affordable, easier to park, and allows better gas mileage. It’s also much easier to tow a miniature trailer with different types of SUVs.
The Nest and the Basecamp both have distinct advantages and disadvantages in their designs. We’ve laid out the most important information to help you make a decision.
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#1. Airstream Nest
The total length of the Airstream Nest is just 16.6 feet, significantly smaller than the majority of trailers on the market. It’s less than ten feet tall, and it’s only seven feet wide. In comparison to other market trailers, the Nest is exceptionally easy to park, and the load isn’t wide enough to be overwhelming in tight roads.
Without any water in the tank or belongings stashed away, the trailer weighs 3,500 pounds. This means that you can add five hundred pounds of water and supplies to the trailer before you exceed the safety weight. Since the trailer tends to be lightweight, it can be towed with multiple different types of SUV.
The Nest does tend to be a little more expensive when compared to the Basecamp. However, if you compare it to the cost of full-sized trailers, you’ll be paying a lot less out of pocket.
Though Airstream is known for making trailer shells out of aluminum, they’ve departed from this traditional model with the Nest. Instead of aluminum, the shell of the Nest is made chiefly from molded fiberglass. This makes it resemble a boat shell more than a traditional trailer shell.
Fiberglass has a certain advantage over aluminum. Unlike aluminum sheeting, you only need a couple pieces of fiberglass to cover the entire trailer. The Nest is manufactured with only three pieces to the entire shell. Unfortunately, fiberglass does have a higher weight than aluminum and tends to be less flexible, which means your gas mileage will suffer.
The holding tank of the Nest is capable of holding twenty-two gallons of fresh water. There’s another combination tank that can hold other liquids, which has a capacity of thirty gallons. Also included is a 4.7 gallon propane tank.
As the name implies, the Nest has a cozy and comfortable design. The edges tend to be soft and rounded, making the trailer feel like a safe space to dwell in. However, that aesthetic might not appeal to those who prefer a sharper and more modern look.
There are two options for the Nest’s floor plan. One option is to have the front bed function as a full-time bed. The other is to allow the bed to convert into a dinette for eating. The other interior features are a bathroom, closet, fridge, and small hallway.
#2. Airstream Basecamp
The Airstream Basecamp is another ideal miniature trailer offering from Airstream. It’s a little smaller than the Nest in all measurements. The trailer is just 16.25 feet long, 6.4 feet wide, and 8.75 feet tall. Though these measurements are slightly more compact, the difference is small enough to be negligible.
One of the potential advantages of the Basecamp is that it is nearly a thousand pounds lighter than the Nest. The Basecamp weighs just 2,635 pounds. This means that you have 865 pounds free to load with stuff before you hit the maximum safe weight. You’ll also get better fuel mileage and towing success due to the decreased weight and height.
The Basecamp is about thirty percent lighter in total than the Nest, but it’s capable of carrying significantly more stuff. If you have a lot of furniture, luggage, or other items that you want to tow around, this is a great option.
The trailer is also designed to make driving easier. The wheels are large enough to grip the road and allow for dynamic turns. You can manage narrower and steeper paths than with many other trailers. Also included are wheel flares and side skirts, which protect the trailer from being damaged by debris and gravel.
The Basecamp is significantly less expensive than the Nest, partly because of the body construction. Rather than molded fiberglass, this model uses Airstream’s traditional choice of aluminum. The riveted panels are lightweight while also being sturdy. This makes the trailer look aesthetically similar to more traditional Airstream designs when compared to the Nest.
The Basecamp can hold twenty-two gallons of fresh water, twenty-nine gallons of waste, and 9.4 gallons of propane. This is double the amount of propane that the Nest can hold, giving the Basecamp an advantage if you want to take it off road for long periods of time.
The Basecamp has just one floor plan available, and it tends to be similar to the Nest. One difference is that the Basecamp contains a side entry door rather than a rear entry door. This can make the interior feel a little more cramped, but it also makes the trailer easier to access.
The Nest has a more cozy and laid-back design, so it doesn’t use any sharp edges or corners. You can also choose between two basic floor plans. Though the Nest is more expensive, it also tends to be more durable and long-lasting.
By contrast, the Basecamp has a much more modern aesthetic appeal. In surveys, the majority of participants greatly preferred the design of the Basecamp. It has everything you need in a trailer, and it’s priced much more affordably than a full sized trailer.