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Old 03-08-2018, 09:57 AM   #1
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1968 24' Tradewind
parker , Colorado
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 132
Introducing 1968 International Tradewind 24' Twin Restoration

I have started the process of restoring/ renovating a 1968 Tradewind. I am really in love with this trailer. I love the wide open floor plan, the beautiful walnut, and the original blue accents. I found this trailer in the fall and started working on it a couple of weeks ago. I have really learned a lot from this forum and I know I will be asking for more help as I delve into the process. Hopefully others will also benefit from this thread. I plan to really fly through this restoration. I need this trailer to be mostly finished by the end of May.

Details of the restoration: I am going to keep the original counter, sink, cabinets and layout. I have gutted the trailer down to the interior skins, except the bathroom and Central Control were left in place. I am going to add a new converter/charger, water pump, on-demand water heater, Olympian Wave 6 heater, pex piping and maybe new gas lines. The cabinets will all be refinished as they go back in. I will paint the bathroom including the tub.

I hope you enjoy. Comments and advice will always be welcome! I am a newbie. Click image for larger version

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Old 03-08-2018, 10:01 AM   #2
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1968 24' Tradewind
parker , Colorado
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Posts: 132
Sorry the photos are sideways. I will look into a remedy before I post anymore.
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Old 03-08-2018, 11:14 AM   #3
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1966 22' Safari
1955 22' Flying Cloud
Fredericksburg , Texas
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Nice looking Airstream. I thought my two year renovation plan on our 55 was aggressive. But what you have planned may be aggressive, but doable with a lot of overtime. Nothing but fun. Also, it seems that if a picture is taller than it is wide, it will post horizontally. Good luck, Bubba
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Old 03-08-2018, 11:45 AM   #4
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1968 20' Globetrotter
ANN ARBOR , THE GREAT LAKES
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Unmolested and cared for... What a find!
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Old 03-08-2018, 11:45 AM   #5
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1968 24' Tradewind
parker , Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bubba L View Post
Nice looking Airstream. I thought my two year renovation plan on our 55 was aggressive. But what you have planned may be aggressive, but doable with a lot of overtime. Nothing but fun. Also, it seems that if a picture is taller than it is wide, it will post horizontally. Good luck, Bubba
Thanks Bubba,
It is aggressive, and if I had to do anything to the frame or remove the bathroom, I know there would be no hope. Things still take me 3 to 4 times longer than I thing, so it could be much longer. That is what I am shooting for though.
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Old 03-08-2018, 11:49 AM   #6
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1968 24' Tradewind
parker , Colorado
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Originally Posted by ALUMINUMINUM View Post
Unmolested and cared for... What a find!
Thank you! I think I definitely paid full price, but I haven't seen one exactly like it in all my searches online.

I have seen many of your posts and I appreciate the knowledge you bring to the forum.
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Old 03-08-2018, 03:42 PM   #7
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1968 20' Globetrotter
ANN ARBOR , THE GREAT LAKES
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Thanks,

Full price is a steal for that trailer.

May 2020??


Very curious if your Airstream Central Control tank monitors work?

“Central Control”, what a misnomer. The only control is the panel/night-light and water-pump switch. Better named a System Monitor.

I appreciate that for many, there is a romance about the 1968 CC, but I cannot see any way to sensibly integrate the CC into an updated electrical system. For Vintage sake, perhaps keep it as a 20lb nightlight or conversation piece, but I didn't let that archaic mess anywhere near my modernized electrical system. I cut it out of my GT, and scratch built (still in development), “Del Centro” by the door...

I'll spare you from my full critique of the 1968 Airstream Central Control as it'll devolve into a two page rant. However, I must admit, that on close inspection, its gratuitous globe-like “Map of the Americas” graphic does illustrate how Sarah Palyn might actually see Russia… I better shut up...
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Old 03-08-2018, 04:48 PM   #8
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1968 24' Tradewind
Oxford, , Mississippi
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Nice Trade Wind. Brings back lots of fond memories of my project. Mine had the same floor plan as yours. It did not have the side gaucho or dinette so I found a gaucho from a 70 for the front and I built a dinette for the curb side. As it worked out, my wife sleeps on the dinette and when camping we never put it up as a table. I sleep on the couch in the front and we use a folding aluminum table. Please don't hesitate to PM me if you have any 68 questions. I learned a lot the hard way and will be more than happy to answer any questions you may have.
Bet there aren't may 50 year old white box trailers out there!!! 68's are the best!

Good call on saving the Control Panel,it never fails to get comments when I show my trailer.
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Old 03-08-2018, 05:52 PM   #9
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1968 24' Tradewind
parker , Colorado
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Originally Posted by 68 TWind View Post
Nice Trade Wind. Brings back lots of fond memories of my project. Mine had the same floor plan as yours. It did not have the side gaucho or dinette so I found a gaucho from a 70 for the front and I built a dinette for the curb side. As it worked out, my wife sleeps on the dinette and when camping we never put it up as a table. I sleep on the couch in the front and we use a folding aluminum table. Please don't hesitate to PM me if you have any 68 questions. I learned a lot the hard way and will be more than happy to answer any questions you may have.
Bet there aren't may 50 year old white box trailers out there!!! 68's are the best!

Good call on saving the Control Panel,it never fails to get comments when I show my trailer.
Thanks for sharing about your '68 Trade Wind. Do you have a build thread? I would love to see pics. I will am sure I will be taking you up on your offer to help with questions as I run into them.
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Old 03-08-2018, 06:56 PM   #10
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1968 24' Tradewind
Oxford, , Mississippi
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I have a lot of pics from before and after but wasn't into documenting it back then. I was 9 years ago and I was in a hurry to get it ready. I also have lots of pics from a friend who did a 67, lots of common issues.
I'll do a better job of checking the forums and look for a PM from you. I'll share my email with you if you would like.
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Old 03-08-2018, 08:06 PM   #11
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1986 34' Limited
1975 27' Overlander
Conifer , Colorado
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Hello from Conifer Venturewest: I'm glad you're going to document your renovation project. I am the former owner of a 66 Trade Wind that I did extensive work to but did not build a project thread. I'd like to follow along with you and make stupid comments now and then.

The 68 trailer was significantly different than the 66. And you're is an International to boot. That top trim level had better cabinetry and more options, like the "central control" water pump switch. My 66 was a twin bed floor plan and had a really goofy bathroom layout which I removed and rebuilt.
Here is a photo or two of the 66. You might be interested in the differences.

I am currently working on a 75 Overlander. It is a whole bunch different than the mid sixties trailers. I enjoy the thing nonetheless. You ought to see the "control center" water pump switch in this baby. Space age I guess.

I saw my first Caravanner 25' recently. They were introduced in 1970. I consider it a Trade Wind with a front bedroom of sorts. It is an interesting floor plan.

David
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Link to my 1975 Overlander Improvement Journal:
https://www.airforums.com/forums/f17...ml#post2053792

Link to our 1976 Renovation Project:
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f221...ct-202081.html
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Old 03-09-2018, 06:49 AM   #12
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1968 24' Tradewind
parker , Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbj216 View Post
Hello from Conifer Venturewest: I'm glad you're going to document your renovation project. I am the former owner of a 66 Trade Wind that I did extensive work to but did not build a project thread. I'd like to follow along with you and make stupid comments now and then.

The 68 trailer was significantly different than the 66. And you're is an International to boot. That top trim level had better cabinetry and more options, like the "central control" water pump switch. My 66 was a twin bed floor plan and had a really goofy bathroom layout which I removed and rebuilt.
Here is a photo or two of the 66. You might be interested in the differences.

I am currently working on a 75 Overlander. It is a whole bunch different than the mid sixties trailers. I enjoy the thing nonetheless. You ought to see the "control center" water pump switch in this baby. Space age I guess.

I saw my first Caravanner 25' recently. They were introduced in 1970. I consider it a Trade Wind with a front bedroom of sorts. It is an interesting floor plan.

David
Hi David, Thanks for sharing. That was a neat '66. I enjoyed reading some of your Overlander renovation thread last night. That is quite a project. You wit throughout the thread was entertaining. I look forward to your input on this thread. Thanks again. Ron
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Old 03-09-2018, 09:24 PM   #13
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1966 24' Tradewind
1995 34' Excella
Lynchburg , Virginia
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Ron

The 68 Tradewind is certainly one of the best trailers that Airstream has ever made. You found a good one. My congratulations to you. I always tell people to find the best one that you can find.

We have a 66 which I really love. We have a renovation thread titled Danís Ď66 Tradewind Improvements. It has been off the road since last April, but I need to get moving and finish the disc brake work because we are going camping spring break.

You may want to move your thread to the 59-68 Tradewind location.

Glad to have you here with us.

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Old 03-11-2018, 08:22 AM   #14
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1968 24' Tradewind
parker , Colorado
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Dan,
Thanks a lot. I look forward to reading your renovation thread. Thanks for sending me the PM also.
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Old 03-15-2018, 09:08 AM   #15
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1968 24' Tradewind
parker , Colorado
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A little update.

I have made a little progress. I have re-glazed the lower rectangular windows which all leaked badly. I have cut out all areas of rotten plywood. I have treated the frame with rust converter and will put a coat of enamel over that. I am not too concerned with rust treatment.

Here are a few pics. Isn't that walnut veneer beautiful? This was the interior side of a wall so it hasn't faded. I can't wait to finish all that wood.

The original foam insulation has done such a great job of protecting the frame and plywood that I tried to keep it in place anywhere I can.

A couple of little observations about the subfloor: My plywood extends well beyond the ends of the outriggers. The outriggers do NOT have bolts to the shell. I have seen so many other airstream threads in which the elevator bolts pass through the aluminum channel and the plywood. On my Tradewind the plywood is bolted to the frame, and separately the plywood is bolted to the the channel.

By the end of this weekend I plan to have the inner wheel wells repaired and the new plywood installed.

I am going to have some questions soon but for now I will post a few photos. Click image for larger version

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Old 03-15-2018, 07:21 PM   #16
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1986 34' Limited
1975 27' Overlander
Conifer , Colorado
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That walnut veneer is nice. I think that was one of the upgrades with the International trim package. Airstream has made nicer interiors as an upgrade for years and years. Our Limited has the hickory cabinetry that we really enjoy. It has held up very well through the years. My Overlander International has what looks like an light oak veneer. Some 75 trailers had laminated plastic over plywood which didn't hold up too well from my observations. But this light oak veneer had done very well in my view.

Your pictures show some major work going on. Keep us updated.

David
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Link to my 1975 Overlander Improvement Journal:
https://www.airforums.com/forums/f17...ml#post2053792

Link to our 1976 Renovation Project:
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f221...ct-202081.html
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Old 03-16-2018, 07:15 AM   #17
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1968 24' Tradewind
parker , Colorado
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Originally Posted by dbj216 View Post
That walnut veneer is nice. I think that was one of the upgrades with the International trim package. Airstream has made nicer interiors as an upgrade for years and years. Our Limited has the hickory cabinetry that we really enjoy. It has held up very well through the years. My Overlander International has what looks like an light oak veneer. Some 75 trailers had laminated plastic over plywood which didn't hold up too well from my observations. But this light oak veneer had done very well in my view.

Your pictures show some major work going on. Keep us updated.

David
I am down in Parker. I would love to see your Overlander project some time.

I have already peeled back more layers than I have intended to on this Tradewind, but It feels good to know it will have good bones when it is finished. I found out my nephew is going to be helping me all next week while he is on spring break. That should give me a good boost. I might even see if he is any good at polishing!

Do you happen to own a buck rivet gun? I have about 6 broken rivets that attach the skin to the channel. I am fine using Olympic rivets, but I wasn't sure if the strength of the Olympic rivets would be adequate there.
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Old 03-16-2018, 07:08 PM   #18
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Hi Venturewest: It would be fun to meet up and share vintage Airstream project experiences. I'm an hour away from Parker and 15 minutes from Conifer. You would be welcome here. Let's use Air Forums private messaging to set something up.

I don't have a pneumatic rivet gun or bucking bar. I wish I did. But there are very few times when I needed it our could use it without a lot of disassembly. And it's a two person job that requires some experience to know how long to hammer the rivet so it isn't too tight. I am no fan of Olympic rivets. But I have certainly used them.

I'll polish my Overlander next winter. It needs it. It has been stripped at some point along the way. Polishing is a finishing operation. I'm a long ways from finished.

David
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Link to my 1975 Overlander Improvement Journal:
https://www.airforums.com/forums/f17...ml#post2053792

Link to our 1976 Renovation Project:
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f221...ct-202081.html
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Old 03-23-2018, 10:59 AM   #19
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1968 24' Tradewind
parker , Colorado
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Sub floor progress.

I finally got my new plywood sub floor spliced in. I used a 19/32 ACX plywood from Home Depot. I think it was about $40 per sheet.

I feel a lot better about the attachment of the shell to the floor to the frame now.

I also did some repairing of the wheel wells. I cut out the holes, sanded all rust. I treated with Rustoleum galvaninized coating. I used additional polymer sealer and riveted on new galvanized sheet metal. I will be doing additional sealing.

I have seen many threads where people are so obsessed over the elevator attachment method. My airstream didn't have any elevator bolts that pass through the shell, floor, and outriggers. There are some that attach the floor to the frame, and others that attach the aluminum channel to sub floor. I replaced plywood on both sides of my trailer, front of the wheel wells. What I found is that there are very few rivets attaching the skin to the channel. Several of these had pulled out of the then channel. I feel there are too few elevator bolts that attach the channel to the skin. As the skin flexes in and out with the wind I think it puts a lot of sheer stress on the elevator bolts in the edge of the plywood. This seems to start to oblong the holes in the plywood. Any kind of rot really increases this and the slots reach the edge of the plywood. The shell can now flex in and out with a lot of play. That puts a lot of lateral stress on adjacent rivets holding the channel. The rivets pull through and now the shell is not longer attached to the floor at all in those areas. That is how two of my trailers have been now.

I feel it is better to have more fasteners connecting the channel to the plywood. I also feel it would be beneficial to increase the number of rivets connecting channel to skin. I used stainless lag bolts with washers and I feel I will never have an issue with channel pulling out from the plywood again.

Today I am going to replace 3 roof vents, at least one vent pipe that had pulled out of the ceiling. I would like to drop the black tank enclosure as well to see what I am dealing with back there. Click image for larger version

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Old 03-23-2018, 01:01 PM   #20
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1968 24' Tradewind
1968 26' Overlander
Kansas City , Kansas
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I have the same trailer ('68 twin layout) but it is not the international trim line and was in much worse shape. Nice find and work.
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