View Full Version : Downsizing from TT to TM

07-23-2008, 05:02 PM
We are seriously thinking about “downsizing” from a 27 ft TT to a TM. I have spent several hours reading your excellent Owners group site. It looks like many owners have either stepped up to a TM or bought a TM as your first RV.

I would like to hear from some owners that have come from a full sized, heavier TT or a Motor home to a TM. What issues? What advantages? What about storage space differences?

The reasons we are considering the change… Easier to pull with my TV, gas mileage improved, love the technology, new local TM dealer.

07-23-2008, 05:23 PM
I've never owned a conventional TT, but after staying several nights in one owned by a family member, I will say that while in theirs, I really miss all the windows in our TM. There are more of them, making for a brighter, cheerier interior. You are after all, camping, there to experience the outdoors.

They also have experienced several roof leaks, and our TM is even a bit older than their TT. Not only is it inconvenient when it rains inside the TT, but he has had to rip apart the entire adjoining wall section, and part of the roof, to repair the leak because the interior particle board or plywood has swollen from the water. While I sense that the frequency of leaks among TM's is probably significantly lower than conventional TT's, I also sense that repairing a TM roof leak would be much less eventful, as there are no composite materials to swell. Just fix the leak, and you're done. No restorative measures needed.

I do like their larger refrigerator. But theirs does not run on 12v. I also like having the cabinets at eye level much more so than being down near the floor, but that's also the only reason we have so many windows. It's a trade off.

Our TM has a comparable amount of space, and weighs half as much.

I've toured the manufacturing facility of a Class A motorhome factory....the brand is virtually a household name. After taking that tour, which has many of the same manufacturing techniques as a conventional TT, I really don't know why anyone would by one. Crude, sloppy, and QA isn't exactly what I would call consistent, or even present.

But I am picky when it comes to that stuff, and TM's aren't perfect either. I just think they are better....and you pay more for that quality.


P and B
07-23-2008, 05:47 PM
We have the 3124KS model. We bought it last fall. So far so good. We used to have a 22' Class C Rockwood. Different model of travel. Dave is right about the cabinets being low and all the nice windows. The TM will be a little more work setting up and taking down but probably not as much as you think. Most of the time is spent stowing things you'd have to stow regardless of what type of RV you have. Other than closing the shells and securing it (literally less than 5 min), the rest of the stuff like stowing hoses, disconnecting electric, etc. will be the same.

For me personally, the biggest flaw in the TM is the airconditioning unit. It's so loud you can hardly hear yourself think. I'm sure there are less noisy units out there but TM hasn't found them. This is probably a small price to pay for being cool on a really hot day.

I think you probably won't notice much difference except that you're going to get much better mileage depending on what you drive now.

Good luck in your research.


07-23-2008, 07:35 PM
We came from a 27 foot 5th wheel with a 13 foot slide to a 3023 TM. We gave up lots of room as well as a full size frig. Now we have much improved gas milage(51/2 MPG better). Much easier to tow and maneuverability is much better. We gave up some confort but find the TM to be enough for our needs.

Ron & Myra

07-23-2008, 08:00 PM
Our class C is 21 ft with a box on the back and the TM is a 3124KB. There is a lot more storage space in the TM except for the bathroom, so I can see that we will be keeping some of the bathroom stuff in another cupboard somewhere. We have three dobermans, so we decided to get the TM with the double bed up front, so they would have a nice place to hang out. They do not like being on the floor. We do like to travel light, but I am concerned about the size of the fridge, as we are mostly vegetarians, and use a lot of space for the veggies. We do know which produce can be kept outside the fridge from our years in Costa Rica. Much of the storage space under the bed in the back will need to be used for the dog equipment that we take to agility trials...canopy, exercise pens, soft crates, etc. and the food for the dogs. We do also have a large cargo box that fits on top of the tow vehicle. We plan to camp out a couple of days in my mother's back yard, where the TM is stored. Our road and driveway are too windy and narrow to dare to bring it up here on top of our mountain.

Mr. Adventure
07-24-2008, 06:32 AM
I've owned both a 29 foot travel trailer and a 37 foot motorhome in the past.

The TrailManor offers these advantages:
- Durability (aluminum structure and skin, great service history from what I read on this board)
- Fuel economy that makes RV travel affordable
- The TM allows RV ownership without needing to drive a gas hog every day for the other 95% of your driving, or alternatively needing to have an expensive motorhome powerplant sitting idle in the storage yard
- When you're traveling, your tow vehicle fits into cities, ordinary parking places, and parking garages
- No offense, but a big travel trailer is a monster on the road, no matter what you tow it with. It's the one RV I can confidently state that I would never do again.
- Maneuverability. A big motorhome or TT is a lot harder to get into campsites, restaurant parking lots, and narrow roads. The motorhome with a towed car also has the problem that it can't be backed up (this can be stressful in parking lots and that time we took a wrong turn onto a small road that kept getting smaller on a dark rainy night in Idaho)

Disadvantages of a TM
- It has to be set up (you could, but probably wouldn't, do the 10 minute setup to use the TM bathroom at a gas stop)
- The bed is harder, and requires a more athletic entrance
- You have to travel lighter
- You have to bend over to use the refrigerator
- The TM shower is functional, but in pretty close quarters
- The FW and holding tanks are smaller

07-24-2008, 07:03 AM
We sold a 27' Wildwood after living in it a few months while I was finishing our house (just couldn't stand to camp in it anymore). The posts about windows are right -- the better light just gives a different "feel" to the trailer.

Maybe it was all those months in the Wildwood, but when I got back into the TT market, everything I looked at depressed me -- they all felt like cheap mobile homes -- not really a "travel trailer" and definitely not "home." Maybe this is unique to me, but I was finally able to explain it to my wife this way, "I want a camping trailer that feels like a camping trailer."

I've been pleasantly surprised at the amount of counter space we have in the TM. So far our outings have been short, and I haven't yet filled all the "spaces."

The biggest difference -- I love towing this thing. No more white knuckles on the wheel while the trailer bucks and kicks in the wind. No more wondering if I'm going to tear up my truck on the next hill.

Finally (sorry to be so long winded) but this forum is one of the greatest aspects of having a TM. I like to fix things, and I've found the TM to be a very "fixable" trailer because of the advice I get from this forum.


07-25-2008, 06:53 PM
Thank you very much for the time you spent giving us some great feedback. I really appreciate the information.

It speaks volumes about your user group when you see the thorough & well thought out replies your site sponsors give to us rookies.

08-10-2008, 08:00 PM
I just wanted to say thank you again for this forum and for the comments on my post. We wanted to close the loop and say that we did indeed make the big step. We purchased a new 2009 3124 KS.

Just a few observations… I towed the 2005 trailer to the deaer and towed the new TM back home. As you all said, there was a world of difference. The TM was so easy to tow, especially compared to the older heavier trailer. Gas mileage improved about 5 miles per gallon.

Our concern about space was unfounded, the 3124 has a good amount of space and almost everything fit from the larger trailer. The few things that did not fit in the TM (like camping chairs, grill and some other larger stuff fits fine in the pickup).

Everything has checked out so far. One of your checklists really helped. We are headed camping Monday to test everything in the real world…

I am looking forward to meeting some of you TM owners and learning more about all these very special trailers. I have already had neighbors stop by and look her over. One neighbor, who is a pilot, was really impressed with the technology. I guess I better get used to that!

08-12-2008, 06:17 AM
Been reading about these TM's. They sound wonderful. We want to upgrade from a pop-up camper and still have the easy towing. Does anyone know of a used TM for sale?

Mr. Adventure
08-12-2008, 06:33 AM
Been reading about these TM's. They sound wonderful. We want to upgrade from a pop-up camper and still have the easy towing. Does anyone know of a used TM for sale?

There are lots of places people sell them on the Internet (Ebay, RVnet, etc. or just Google "TrailManor". Generally, they seem to hold up pretty well and the floorplans haven't changed in years, so buying used usually seems to work out pretty well.

This is the link to the "for sale" thread on this forum: