Typically when you see a travel trailer with corrugated sides you know you’re talking a wood-framed trailer. When you see smooth fiberglass sides your expectation is that it’s a laminated trailer, where they take several layers of materials and glue them together as a laminate. But the Forest River Salem FSX 270RTK breaks the mold by being a wood-framed trailer with a smooth skin.
Salem FSX 270RTK
This new model is the first to feature a few things for Salem. For example, it’s a full seven-foot ceiling height inside, so that means it just feels more open. It also means if you travel with someone who’s taller, the shower has more headroom when the whole ceiling is higher.
But I can also see people’s reticence to toy haulers as they used to be only big garages that weren’t all that attractive. Fortunately, the people who have been doing a better job with interior design with RVs, in general, have also found their way to the toy hauler department.
Starting in the back, I love the fact that many toy haulers now have provisions to have the ramp also serve as a deck, and this is no exception. I’ve seen more than a few people doing this at RV parks and in really scenic places. Frankly, I’m rather jealous. That’s a cool use of space and a great way for one thing to do multiple duties.
Since we’re back here now, Salem has included a number of totes that slip right under the benches that are in the very back. Above those benches are cabinets with netting over the fronts so there is no shortage of space for stuff. If you do bring something like bicycles, kayaks or a side-by-side in here, the couches flip up to maximize the interior space.
The kitchen in the Salem FSX 270RTK
The kitchen counter is an “L”-shaped arrangement with a very large sink in it. Then there is the typical RV three-burner stove, this one being a 17” model. Above that is a vent hood and the microwave.
Surrounding the microwave are cabinets and, again, since this has a higher ceiling, those cabinets are taller with shelves inside and glass doors. I do wonder about glass doors in cabinets in an RV. I can see the can of beans crashing through the glass. But I’ve never actually heard of this happening in the real world, so maybe I’m just looking for trouble. There’s also a 12-volt compressor fridge.
Forest River has been good about including a solar solution when they include a 12-volt refrigerator. This is no exception with there being a 190-watt solar panel on the roof as standard along with a 30-amp solar charge controller.
Opposite the kitchen there’s just a big empty space. Want to put a desk here? Sure! Bring in a couple of zero-gravity chairs? No worries.
In the back, as is typical of a toy hauler, are two benches that fold up against the sides of the trailer. There’s a free-standing table that fits in between these. Of course, they fold down to form either two individual beds or one big bed. However, the odd shape of the backrest makes this more of a bed with a divider, really.
There is also the option of the MORryde Bunk Above system to double the sleeping capacity.
The bathroom’s principal unique feature is the greater ceiling height.
The queen-sized bed has three storage bins underneath that really take advantage of the space under the bed. This mirrors the six plastic totes that come with the trailer and fit under the benches in the main area. Those totes also stack if that area is full of a side-by-side or bikes or a golf cart or whatever. Under those storage totes in the bedroom is a whole second space for shoes.
What’s weird here is that, in order to increase the amount of space in the forward storage bay and also provide room for an outdoor kitchen, the sides of the bed are taken up by rather large “boxes.” It would seem that getting into and out of bed would be significantly more difficult.
What those “boxes” get you is an outdoor kitchen on the camp side of this trailer at the front. Typically this precious space is reserved for a pass-through cargo hold but, in this case, it got repurposed to hold the kitchen. That kitchen has a flat-top griddle and small 110-volt refrigerator.
On the road side, the storage up front is made larger by this “box” – so that’s a plus. But I still question the ease of getting into and out of bed.
One odd thing I noticed was that on the road side there is both a full outside shower and a spray port. Not sure what the logic is of both being in the same place, but there they are. I think if you’re going to include an outdoor kitchen, then putting either the shower or the spray port there by the kitchen makes more sense.
This is a trailer that can serve a lot of needs well. That’s why I like toy haulers so much, in case you missed it. I do think the interior is much nicer than toy haulers of just a few years ago. But now it’s gone to the very trendy white and gray look and, frankly, I love color and wood. But you can’t please all the people all the time, and there’s stick-on wallpaper and color you could add yourself.
I also like that the underbelly is sealed but with panels that are removable in sections. So, if there is trouble, you don’t have a huge job of removing the entire underbelly to resolve it.
Overall, this is a well thought out design that I believe can serve a number of needs very, very well. But that’s the point of a relatively blank canvas. You can make it your own.
Tony comes to RVtravel.com having worked at an RV dealership and been a lifelong RV enthusiast. You can find his writing here and at StressLessCamping, where he also has a podcast with his wife about the RV life.
These RV reviews are written based on information provided by the manufacturers along with our writer’s own research. We receive no money or other financial benefits from these reviews. They are intended only as a brief overview of the vehicle, not a comprehensive critique, which would require a thorough inspection and/or test drive.
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