Many thanks to those Shasta owners who have shared information/documents, along with a special thank you to Andrew for his time spent making the Shasta patterns. These patterns were non-existent for many years and completely unavailable until Andrew put the work into them for all to use.
As requested, this is my attempt at some Shasta History/Information:
Click here: "The Shasta Story"
Another article by Shasta Industries:
The "Shasta Wings RV Club" was founded in 1977. Chapters were available in Florida, Indiana, Louisiana, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Texas. Gatherings were held throughout the United States, all year round. Some States had more than one Chapter. A past "Wing" member told me that each Chapter's title required the word "wing" or a likeness. Chapters were quite creative!: "Wing Dings, Western Buckeye Wings, Wings and Wheels, Wing Knutz, Fort Wingers, Cajun Wings, Indy Wings and Florida Flamingos. In the year 2000, the "Wings RV Club Tour Schedule" was as follows:
1. Snowbird Rally 2000, January 23-29, at Lake Oklawaha, Fort McCoy Florida
2. International Rally, August 7-11, in Amboy Illinois
3. Thunder Bay and Beyond, August 13-25, Ontario, Manitoba & Saskatchewan
4. Country Charm, October 20-26, Renfro Valley, KY and Pigeon Forge, TN
The Shasta group merged into the Coachmen Caravan RV group around 2000/2001. Here is a old "Wings" newsletter: Click
Recently a past member of "Wing Knutz" sent me a 1998 copy of their newsletter. This was a Michigan Chapter of "Wings". 1st page 2nd page This chapter is actually still in existence, along with several other of the old wing chapters, but now part of the Coachman Caravan Camping Club.
Though Shasta Industries came into being about 1941, under the name of "Cozy Cruiser" we will start here about 1952, when they became "Shasta". The earliest Shasta Model I have seen documented is the Shasta 1400, the main identifier being a window in the door. Early Shastas were made in Van Nuys, CA.
Among some of the early models, through 1957, was the "1600", a precursor to the Airflyte, which was very "canned ham" shape and looked like a slightly larger 1500. Also found in 1958, an "1800", which looked like a stretched out 1500 and included a toilet/shower. The "more common" earliest Shasta Model that most of us are familiar with is the early 1500 model. Canned ham shape and minus wings. (Mid-late 50s) I believe these early models were all 6 ˝’ wide.
In 1958 the Airflyte was released. The 16' "Airflyte" was considered a big deal at the time. Over 50 improvements, more windows and sleeker design. Also found the same year, the 19' Deluxe, which had a toilet & shower and is 8' wide. These models came with "wings", made from wood and aluminum. Wooden screen doors are a good clue you have a model prior to 1960. Also, pay close attention to window detail... this can also help in identification.
What year is it? A few clues to look for are by 1960; wooden wings are replaced with all aluminum ones. You also see the "scalloped" edging on the cupboards at this time, and aluminum screen doors instead of wooden ones. After 1963 you begin to see changes once again. Scalloped cupboard edges begin to disappear, canvas bunks are replaced with wooden folding ones and of course the curved exterior shapes make way for the "box" shapes. By 1965 birch interiors are replaced with paneling and outside the Z stripe makes way for the Slanted Slash; curved trailer exteriors are gone. Keep in mind that these changes take place a bit gradually, so some details tend to overlap.
Finding your vin number. The vin number is typically found stamped on the curbside of the tongue. Look for a number with the first character being a letter.
Tires: A 1963 Shasta 1500 had 6.50x15, four ply tires. Early Shasta Compacts had 6.50x13" tires (air pressure, 24 pounds). 1961 Shasta Airflyte had 6.70x15" tires, white sidewalls standard.
How much did they cost back then? A 1958 16' Airflyte cost $1095. By 1961 the cost had risen to $1250. A 1963 Shasta 1500 went for about $1195. Shasta's were very popular due to the fact they were considered low priced, yet offered luxury and quality. Construction: 3" channel steel, floor framing of 2" studding, insulated and covered. Sidewall construction of 1x4s, with 1" fiberglass insulation, walls and ceiling. Outside .032 gauge aluminum skin.
Early 60’s Airflytes can easily be confused with other models, such as the early 63-64? Model 1500, which is less "canned ham" shaped from its early version. Airflytes were 7’ wide x 16' long, while the 1500 was 6 ˝’ wide x 15' long. The Airflyte also has a more elongated "teardrop" profile.
Beginning about 1962, we see new models, such as the Compact, Astrodome and 16SC. I have seen Compacts mentioned in literature as early as 1960. The Astrodome was produced for only a short time, likely 1962-1964. The Astrodome and 16SC had the same exact floorplan, with the exception of the "cabover" bed. The "Astroflyte" was also a cabover model with the same floorplan as the Airflyte. The Astrodome had a toilet, the Astroflyte did not.
The Airflytes, SC and SCS (self-contained with shower) can also easily be confused from the exterior since they are all 16 footers. The Airflyte does not come with a toilet. The SC came with a toilet. The SCS model came with both a toilet and shower (standard furnace also) and has the door further back on the side of the trailer. Airflytes had a bed across the back. The SC models had a bed across one side. The SCS model appears to have had the stove and sink along the back wall of trailer.
In 1965-66, we see the SCS again, in the "box" shape. This model is now called the "Continental" and still has the door to the rear side. It is also completely "self-contained" with both toilet and shower. Weight, 2370 lbs-274 hitch weight/approx 7'wide by 16' in length. In 1965 the Airflyte is still in existence with the "toaster" shape.
In 1969, the Airflyte is still mentioned in Spec sheets.
By 1968, we see new Shasta models available, such as the Lowflyte, Starflyte, and Stratoflyte. The "side slash" is replaced by a straight line of colored strip. Many of these models now have the metal model name plate, underneath the metal Shasta emblem. One observation a Shasta owner noted is that the colored strip rides below the door handle on the Lowflyte, above on other models, like the 1400 or 1500. Wings are still on most all models produced, but have became smaller as the years have passed. Beginning about 1973, Shasta trailers begin to take on a more "updated" look again, with browns, orange and gold trims. In 1976, Coachman buys out Shasta, but carries on the name until about 2004. From 2004 to 2009, we see no Shasta production until the "New Shasta Airflyte", a new version of the vintage Airflyte is released.
Folks often contact me asking for more info on the later 70s/early 80s models. A huge selection of models and floorplans become available, of which a few are named here. In 1979 we see the Shasta Daisy, in the 1500 and 1700 models, all the way up to large park models.
In 1980, we have the Shasta Freedoms in 18'-23', the Ultras, 14'-18', along with fifth wheels.
1982 the Friendship models 14' - 20' , Roadmaster Motorhomes, along with tent trailers being offered.
Some 1984 models being offered are the Regency, Shasta, and Revere series. There is little information out there on the mid-70s through 1984 models. .
These later models are fast becoming "older", had wings, (through approx. 1984) and the distinctive look/colors of that era. Quote: "The Vintage Airstream Club considers twenty-five years from the model year to be a vintage coach".