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Old 02-13-2012, 05:02 PM   #1
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2006 Kodiak Scamper 16ft. Hybrid

Hello,

My wife and I have done lots of tent camping, airplane/tent camping, backpacking/camping and 4 weeks of rental travel trailer camping.

We enjoy camping "off the grid". Although we live in the mid west we do all of our camping/hiking in or west of the Rocky Mts. We are especially fond of southern Utah canyonland country. Our tow vehicle in the past has been a 2002 Jeep Liberty...which suffered greatly towing 3,000 lbs. in the mts. We just ordered a new 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee with the 5.7 Hemi engine, towing package and all the goodies. We want a vehicle that will tow 3 or 4,000 lbs. in the mts. with ease.

So here is the question. We are considering buying a used 2006 Kodiak Scamper 16 ft. Hybrid that is pristine/ like new/one owner...from the owner. I have read that the Kodiak/Thor/Dutchman campers....whatever may not be a good choice.

What do you all think? As said earlier we enjoy camping off grid which means rough roads, crossing small creeks, ravines and traveling along narrow, mt. roads. Ground clearance and sturdiness are an issue. We travel as a couple and want something small so we can wiggle into the isolated site. We are retired(64 and 59 but in excellent physical condition.) Cannot stand traditional campgrounds. We have rented a large Fleetwood popup(toilet and shower) and a brand new 16 ft. Ultra Lite(Rockwood I think) and taken them into such areas. The pop up did fine. The new Ultra Lite nearly shook itself apart. Bathroom mirror fell off the wall. Water line came unhooked etc.

My wife insists on a bathroom and shower. I rather enjoy them as well. Otherwise we would be looking at a Chalet or Aliner type camper and something with better ground clearance. Can I put larger wheels and tires on the Kodiak to gain and inch or two? How about the lift kits? Will a lift kit effect the stability? Is the Kodiak a light weight, poor quality unit? It sure looks nice!

We will be buying something soon. Don't want to take the depreciation hit of buying new, in case we are unhappy with our choice.

Thanks so much for your help.

Bo

So what do you think.
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Old 02-13-2012, 05:36 PM   #2
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Funny you are asking about a Kodak. I'm selling my 05' Aerolite hybrid, and buying a new 12' Aerolite hybrid. Camping nearly 360+ nights since new, it has held up great. The Kodak's and Aerolites are the basically the same trailer.

With a 16' Kodak your only going to have a single axle which will cause a more "bouncy" ride. With 2 axles which will be found on floorplans of more than 20' long will smooth out the ride and help in off-road travel.

The Kodak's and the Aerolite's did offer a "off-road" package which included: 8" body lift kit, extended jack and stablizers, double entry step, larger heavy-duty tires. I have the 05', 06', 07', 08' and 09' catalogs which shows that option.

For dry camping the 46 gallon fresh water tank is a real plus. You will not find a small tt / hybrid with a tank that large. Our new 2012 now has a 52 gallon tank. Be real careful on other brands as far as there fresh water tank size. Some are as small as 22 gallons. The Jayco Fay-Feather hybrids are only 28 gallon including the water heater. The Chalet or Aliner run between 15 and 25 gallons. We also camp sometimes at NP. or State parks without shower facilities and are good taking 12 showers (3 people) without running out of water.

One negative might be that up until about 09' or so they used the Euro frame which is nice and light in weight, but sits lower to the ground. So "ground clearance" will be lower. Our new 2012' has a regular "I" beam frame and sites about 4" higher.

Would be nice if you found a used Kodak or Aerolite with that "off road" package.
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Old 02-14-2012, 10:36 AM   #3
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From once owning a Jayco 23b I think with the camping that you want to do will require more of a off road chassis under the camper of choice.

Even with flipping axles and replacing tires you will have the same box above all of the modifications.

I like the thinking of a A-Liner type camper for this type of camping.
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Old 02-14-2012, 02:44 PM   #4
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Gene,

Thanks for the comments. When you refer to "having the same box" even if achieving greater ground clearance....are you advising that the Kodiak will not hold up under more severe surface conditions?

That is a concern of mine but I have little experience to back it up. A nice indoor shower and potty are pretty important to my wife.

Bob
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Old 02-14-2012, 04:25 PM   #5
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Quote:
What do you all think? As said earlier we enjoy camping off grid which means rough roads, crossing small creeks, ravines and traveling along narrow, mt. roads. Ground clearance and sturdiness are an issue. We travel as a couple and want something small so we can wiggle into the isolated site.
From what you say, I think you would have to modify the Kodak (tires / lift kit) especially when you say you want to cross creeks and ravines. Normal tt's are not like ATV's, Even my brother and his triple axle toy hauler are known to get broken on the back country roads he ventures into. I think the box will hold up, but the softer riding suspension will take a hit.

Myself I have a few times found ourselves on crappy roads both paved, dirt or gravel. I took it very easy......
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