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TAB 400


Jinx & Wayne
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While nice for a teardrop, I'm with Kirk on this. As full-timers, I can't imagine living full-time in that kind of space. When the weather is nice, all the world is your porch; when it's blistering hot, freezing cold, pouring down rain, etc., that little trailer is going to get incredibly claustrophobic. Other considerations are storage space (you have to carry everything you need with you) and the wet bath. A wet bath means that the entire bathroom is your shower... nothing on the counter that can't get wet and you have to dry it down each time to prevent mold and mildew.

Rob

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And when 1 person is ill?

Their age would probably also play a very significant part in how well it would work out for them. When I was much younger I did a lot of tent camping and loved it, but sure wouldn't like that now. Since it is your kids, I'll guess that they are 50's or younger and that might make it more practical that for we seniors. Even so, the small space will be very limiting in terms of what they will be able to take with them and when bad weather or health problems take place. 

If the question is "is it possible" then the answer is yes. But there are not that many people who could live for long it one like that so the question becomes, are they 2 of the people who can enjoy that lifestyle?

Edited by Kirk W
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If they think it works for them then I say go for it.  Those are nice little trailers.  When I'm traveling I tend to gravitate towards folks in the smaller rigs.  I've run into many happy people traveling in some very small rigs.  Besides, odds are no matter what rig they buy won't be the last one.  You have to get in the game before you know what is and what isn't important to you and your style of travel.  I'm on my 8th rig and keep trying to go smaller.  Nothing wrong with starting small.

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Chris and Cherie of Technomadia started their full time life in a TAB smaller than the 400. True, it only took them seven months to decide they needed a trailer with a bathroom and an inside kitchen but the 400 model TAB has those.

As to wet bath, I liked having one in my van. Wiping it down with a microfiber cloth after each shower took only moments and meant my bathroom was always clean.

Linda

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I agree with others... it's really small for a couple for full-timing and weather would be a factor.

It just depends on who uses it; it may work for them if they're minimalists.

It has 22 gal fresh tank; 18 gal grey and 12 gal black so not at all good for boondocking.

Your daughter and husband are probably much younger but the bed could be an issue. One would have to crawl over the other to get in & out and if one wanted to stay up later or get up earlier it could be an issue.

Bedding would be difficult as the mattress is surrounded by 3 walls.

In cooler temperatures the bed area would gather a lot of moisture and since the mattress is up against the walls mold could be an issue.

There's not much storage for a full-timer but again; perhaps they're big time minimalists.

Finally, the wet bath could be an issue for two people.  Nothing can be setting out on the counter and the walls would need wiping down after each use.

For a weekender or just plain camping trips it would be great.  Not so, for a full-timing couple.  Just my opinion.

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7 hours ago, Jinx & Wayne said:

My eldest and her husband going full time. They are considering a TAB 400. They asked me for advice. I have no experience with this unit. Anyone out there know anything?

Wayne & Jinx
2017 F-350 diesel, dually
2006 Carriage Carri-Lite 36KSQ

How old are they.

Looked at the floor plan, where are they going to put their clothes for ALL seasons?  Yes, you can layer, but you still need place for underwear, clean clothes, dirty clothes until you can wash, etc.   This would be great for weekends, even 2 weeks of vacation, but full-time?   

We were in Livingston one November parked across from a couple with an A-Frame popup trailer.   The had a cover for cooking on a Coleman stove, the back seat of the car was their closet, they used the park rest room for bathroom and shower needs and when it got very cold for a few days, they went to a motel for 3-4 nights because their little heater couldn't keep up.   Not what I would call fun way to full-time.   And I know they were doing the best that they could, but if just looking, then think about being stuck 24/7 in the rain at 40° (ie PNW after September) for weeks on end.  Not fun.   

 

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I think it would be possible but it depends on what experience they have camping and what they are going to use to pull it. If they will have a van, that can be additional space for storage or sleeping of needed. A pickup with a cap would give them extra storage. 

They should take the time before buying to mock up the space indicated on the floor plans to see if they can survive doing the happy dance in the aisle. They probably should try to mock up the head room at the same time. Use that mock up to see how much stuff they can carry. It may give them some inside before buying. 

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It’s a really cute trailer and I know a couple of people who own them.  The one person I met who was full-timing in one was single and was towing with a Wrangler - it was about the biggest trailer that would work for her.  She was quite happy with it.

I full-time in a trailer that’s bigger, but not huge by any means (16-1/2 foot box, 21’ overall).  It has a transverse bed like the TAB does and while it took me a bit to figure out how I was going to make it work, it’s not that big of a deal to keep it made up.  I know of several couples (younger than I am) who don’t mind the crawl over aspect, though at my age, if someone else was in my life I would have a trailer with a walk-around bed.

As has been brought up above, it really depends on the two people.  They need to spend some time in it, trying out how to live in it, where to put their clothes etc.  I have a storage unit and visit it a couple of times a year to swap out seasonal clothes.  I have the storage unit for other reasons - I would not want to pay for one just to keep seasonal clothes in it, but since I have it, using it to store off-season clothes works for me.

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I don't believe that arguing somehow helps answer the question by Wayne & Jinx? This is an opinion situation, not a debate so nobody is wrong just because they view things differently.

Edited by Kirk W
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7 hours ago, Kirk W said:

This is an opinion situation, not a debate so nobody is wrong just because they view things differently.

Except people aren't wording things like opinions. They sound like they are giving definitive answers and that bugs me. Especially since most of those answering appear to have never lived small. I, for instance, would never answer a question relating to an HDT since I've never even been inside one.

Linda

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On 9/16/2021 at 6:24 AM, Jinx & Wayne said:

My eldest and her husband going full time. They are considering a TAB 400. They asked me for advice. I have no experience with this unit. Anyone out there know anything?

 

I think most of us have had small campers or even started out as tenters and we've graduated to larger ones for full-timing.  I think that would count as have some experience with a small camper.  So far, no one has had one of these exact trailers but we all gave 'opinions' of things to think about. We don't know your daughter so don't know if she has thought out the possible issues.  It may work for her but she needs to think it out.   Hope this helps!

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On 9/16/2021 at 5:05 PM, Star Dreamer said:

I think it would be possible but it depends on what experience they have camping and what they are going to use to pull it. If they will have a van, that can be additional space for storage or sleeping of needed. A pickup with a cap would give them extra storage. 

They should take the time before buying to mock up the space indicated on the floor plans to see if they can survive doing the happy dance in the aisle. They probably should try to mock up the head room at the same time. Use that mock up to see how much stuff they can carry. It may give them some inside before buying. 

Ditto

We started with a tent and going to a 14 foot TT (TAB 400 appears to be 18 feet),  it was paradise. Ice Box, Gas light, Fresh water 20 Gal with hand pump, would sleep 6 if 3 were younger, 2 burner stove and oven and restroom was down a path..

Almost 50 years later, I can't Imagine 2 people livings full time in less 25 feet. My must have list requires even more space in bad weather.

Clay Pulling a 40 foot Fifth Wheel

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First, thank you for the responses.

We have three girls.  This is the eldest at 49 and both she and SIL are in good shape and active.  All three daughters are hard-headed as mules (I wonder where they got that? lol).  I've learned to suggest when asked for an opinion rather than try to dictate.

  Jinx and I have suggested that just maybe they just might, possibly, perhaps be happier with more space and more tank capacities.  That got them up from the Meaner Bean teardrop.  The MB was so small that the company uses a 5'5" man to demonstrate the TT. That is progress. 

We've suggested that they should actually get in the RV and simulate daily activities before buying.  I am confident that they will do that. I will pass along the mock up suggestion as an extension of our advice.I expect that is the limit of influence regarding size and facilities.

They will have a PU with a cap for stuff.  SIL is aware of TV capacity issues.  He has moved up from the idea of a smaller PU as TV.

I will mention the Technomedia folks and that they moved up within the year.  Selling within a year would probably involve taking a big monetary l loss.

Wayne & Jinx
2017 F-350 diesel, dually
2006 Carriage Carri-Lite 36KSQ

 

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1 hour ago, Jinx & Wayne said:

This is the eldest at 49 and both she and SIL are in good shape and active.

I looked at the Meaner Bean and hadn't been aware of it and it is impressive. If BruceT  is reading this thread he might want to join in as it would seem that what your kids are considering is more on the order of what is common in RV use in Australia. When I was the age of your daughter or even a few years younger, that would have been a very attractive plan to us as well. We did a lot of back country RVing in our 40's towing a larger pop-up with a 4WD, Dodge Ramcharger. The Bean would have served us very well, but we were never year around with that even though we at times though we wanted to be. While RV travel in Australia is much of it of the type that your daughter seems attracted to, there are some major reasons for the difference. The Australian Outback is more than 2.5 million square miles in area and is home to several climate zones.  While the US does have some large areas of undeveloped lands, none if those places are as vast and remote as is true in Australia and many of the really undeveloped areas in the US do not allow the use motorized vehicles and there are far more people using them. 

There is no question that there are some very real possibilities for the type of RVing that they are considering, but not many people would want to do that year around for very long. The TAB won't be as durable for off road travel as the Bean, but has better living space. There is a long list of other issues that could arise if we assume that they are able to find satisfactory places to live in the TAB. What about an income to support the lifestyle? Do they have an exit plan? What of health insurance? That list goes on and on, far beyond the issues of the RV it's self. I see what they are thinking of as rather like pioneers heading off into the wilderness to homestead. No doubt that it is possible for some people, but is it a good fit for you? 

Edited by Kirk W
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We had a friend who has passed now that fulltimed with a teardrop and a mini-van for many years until cancer finally forced her off the road at 84. She replaced both the teardrop and the mini-van a couple of times over the years, but never upsized significantly. She did have a number of plastic totes in the van for her seasonal and other items that didn't need to be readily at hand in the teardrop as well as a port-a-potty. Her adult daughter often traveled with her for a month or so at a time. 

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7 hours ago, Jinx & Wayne said:

I will mention the Technomadia folks and that they moved up within the year.  Selling within a year would probably involve taking a big monetary l loss.

Um. you almost got it. Sean lived in the Tab for several years before he met Cherie and she moved in with him. Their T@B was tiny, having only a bed inside with a kitchen out back and no bathroom. They still lived full time in it for seven months. The point being young people can do what we oldsters won't even try.

Linda

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8 hours ago, sandsys said:

Sean lived in the Tab for several years before he met Cherie

Quote

We're Cherie Ve Ard & Chris Dunphy

Technomadia about us......

We have gotten to know Chris & Cherie pretty well over the years, mostly at Escapades. We missed seeing them this year as they had other commitments. 

Edited by Kirk W
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1 hour ago, sandsys said:

Oops. My error. I was thinking of friends of Chris and Cherie who lived in a bus but now on a boat. They used to do support work at emergency locations. I have become very good at word substitution; I practice a lot.

Linda

Chris and Cherie have a bus, a van camper and a boat. They alternate between all of them.

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I would suggest a look at some older videos of "Travels with Delaney" on YouTube.  He is very informative and has thoroughly reviewed every aspect of the T@b 400.  He and his wife eventually traded it because of the bed situation - one crawling over the other.

LaDonna

 

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On 9/18/2021 at 8:00 AM, Kirk W said:

The TAB won't be as durable for off road travel as the Bean, but has better living space. There is a long list of other issues that could arise if we assume that they are able to find satisfactory places to live in the TAB. What about an income to support the lifestyle? Do they have an exit plan? What of health insurance? That list goes on and on, far beyond the issues of the RV it's self. I see what they are thinking of as rather like pioneers heading off into the wilderness to homestead. No doubt that it is possible for some people, but is it a good fit for you? 

They are planning to work part of the year.  She has 30 years hospitality business experience and he is a professional chef.  I'm pretty sure boondocking will be for short periods and not for months or multiple weeks on end.  The will likely spend several months in a row at a campground each year during their work seasons.

Wayne & Jinx
2017 F-350 diesel, dually
2006 Carriage Carri-Lite 36KSQ

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