|Morning in Jackson Center, Ohio|
I have owned my Airstream for a few seasons now. Despite the fact that my model is a 2006 Airstream, the basic design of the 28 foot Airstream has not changed. The new International models have a different cabinet stain color and upgraded Corian countertops, but the layout is identical to my Airstream. One notable and glaring difference between the new models and the Troutstream are the upgraded televisions. The Troutstream came with only one television located in the lounge area.
Flat screen televisions have come a long way since 2006. My Airstream came equipped with a small Sony flatscreen. I really did not buy my Airstream to watch television but I must admit it is nice to put on a movie at night for the kids while Melizza and I have a glass of wine by the fire. The Sony was adequate for our needs except for one issue. The old Sony television did not have a built in digital tuner. As a consequence, it did not pickup over the air high definition signals. Essentially, that means we couldn't watch television unless we were hooked up to cable. We rarely stay in private parks so that is not usually an option. I could have purchased a digital tuner adapter but I decided that I would wait for the right television to come along. After all, the Sony is a dinosaur in the flat screen world. It is thick and heavy by todays standards.
The configuration in the 28 foot Airstream is such that it will allow for a fairly large television. After measuring the curved walls and researching televisions obsessively, I settled on a 32 inch Samsung Smart LED television. It is thin, light, energy efficient, 1080p and has a great picture. I considered the Vizio models and Samsung and settled on the latter based on the thickness and the location of the HDMI ports on the side. It is important to check on the dimensions of television to make sure you have a proper fit. The actual dimensions of the television depend on the size of the bezel. The Samsung has two HDMI slots on the side which will allow me to easily plug in accessories like Apple TV or video game systems for the kids.
I have no fear of installing electronics but the thought of drilling holes into the walls of my Airstream is troubling to me. I was able to use the old television mount with a VESA adapter plate which essentially allows my mounting bracket to hold a larger television by converting to a larger set of square holes that screw directly into the television. The installation was a breeze and I am very happy with the results. Now I can receive High Definition channels with my factory installed antenna.
|VESA adapter plate|
As I mentioned above, I did not want to drill holes into the walls of my Airstream. After much consideration, Melizza and I decided to install a second screen in our bedroom so that we could watch movies or television while the kids were using the Samsung. I always look at the newer model Airstreams to see how the televisions are mounted. Most new 28 foot Internationals have a television in the bedroom. Since this would involve drilling into the wall adjacent to our shower, I decided to leave this job up to the professionals at the Airstream Service Center in Jackson Center, Ohio. I purchased a 24 inch JVC LED television with a built in DVD player. I know that DVD's are yesterdays technology but we wanted the ability to watch them in our room. This television has HDMI inputs that will allow us to upgrade the systems as technology progresses. I am happy with the installation job. The mounting bracket locks into place and it can swivel for a better viewing angle. I feel that my Airstream is now up to date and I just can't wait to take it out.
|The JVC 24 inch LED installed|
I do still have a CD changer in the front overhead cabinet that I will be replacing with something more relevant in the near future. I will also run HDMI cables from the front cabin to the main television at some point. For now, I am happy with the upgrades and look forward to traveling in comfort and style in the Troutstream
|John Deere and Airstream. Two American Icons|
|Another interior shot|
|Vintage Airstream Clipper|
|What a collection!|
One other benefit of my visits to the factory is the opportunity to meet fellow Airstream travelers in the waiting room. The staff in Jackson Center are pretty familiar with me. They have dubbed me the best dressed customer as I typically stop in before work to drop off my Airstream. Most of the other customers are dressed a bit more casually. It is always nice to share travel stories with kindred spirits. Although I am one of the younger owners in the room, this particular brand attracts passionate owners that are full of wanderlust. I hope to have the time and freedom to travel as they do someday.