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Old 01-16-2008, 07:29 AM   #1
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1961 28' Ambassador
Sherburne , New York
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'61 Ambassador recovery - need some specs

I'm heading 300 miles away to pick up a 1961 Ambassador that I just got on ebay and I'd like some info so that I can be prepared for the tow home.

-What is the ball size for this trailer?

-What should the ball height be?

-Any idea what the tongue weight is?

-I'd like a part number for the wheel bearings in case the ones on there are shot.

-Are the wheels for a 1961 the standard 6 bolt pattern?


Thanks for any help you can give me. I'm returning to Airstream ownership after about 3 years of non-ownership.

John
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Old 01-16-2008, 08:11 AM   #2
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1993 21' Sovereign
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RoverOwner
-What is the ball size for this trailer?
2"
Quote:

-What should the ball height be?
a bit less than 19", allowing for axle sag.
Quote:

-Any idea what the tongue weight is?
should be around 500#, depends on what equipment is still in the trailer, and what has been replaced, and how much the replacements weigh, and where they are located. Kind of goes along with the ball height answer.
Quote:

-I'd like a part number for the wheel bearings in case the ones on there are shot.
I am at work, so I can't give you any part numbers, but be sure to get at least one grease seal for it.
Quote:

-Are the wheels for a 1961 the standard 6 bolt pattern?
Yes.
Quote:


Thanks for any help you can give me. I'm returning to Airstream ownership after about 3 years of non-ownership.

John
You're welcome, it's amazing how rusty we become if we don't use our knowledge daily. Good luck with your new trailer.
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Old 01-16-2008, 11:27 AM   #3
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1961 28' Ambassador
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Thanks - what about the rims. I'm assuming that they are original. Will they be split rims in 61 or had AS gone to 1 piece by then?
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Old 01-16-2008, 12:00 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RoverOwner
Thanks - what about the rims. I'm assuming that they are original. Will they be split rims in 61 or had AS gone to 1 piece by then?
The original wheels back then were "split."

Until the history or actual visiual inspection of a trailer is made, the only answers posters here can give you, "is how the trailer was built."

As an example, if the axles are shot, the ball height could be 15 inches.

A previous post today, includes a link, that will teach you how to check the axles out, when you see the trailer.

People modify things everyday, many times without regard to "safety" issues.

Best thing to do is take 4 tires and 6 hole wheels with you.

Again, assuming the trailer axles have not been changed out, the original bearing numbers are LM67048 for the outer bearing and 25580 for the inner bearing.

The grease seals can be one of two different sizes.

292100 is a felt seal and 412920 is a neoprene seal. They are not interchangeable.

Andy
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Old 01-23-2008, 09:09 PM   #5
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We are off to recover tomorrow

Tomorrow, at 3am, RoverOwner and I will be off for Cape Cod for a recovery mission to tow the 61 Ambassador back here to central NY. Cross your fingers for good weather and an easy tow!! Wish us luck!
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Old 01-24-2008, 02:14 PM   #6
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Heading West

We are all hooked on and heading west....almost to Springfield. So far, no issues except we had to cut the wires to the brakes.they would activate when you clicked on turn signal.....more to follow...
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Old 01-24-2008, 02:21 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robandzoe
...we had to cut the wires to the brakes.they would activate when you clicked on turn signal.....more to follow...
That should make for an interesting VAP discussion.
Squeel, roll, squeel, roll,...

Ok, does the left brake lock with the left turn signal?
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Old 01-24-2008, 02:32 PM   #8
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On the road!

Well, we made it to Cape Cod around 9am, batten'd down the hatches and wired the plug to the Sprinter van, air'd up the tires and hooked on...it's towing like a dream! We're now on I90 at exit three and so far so good. The tires were good, the bearings are cool and the door hasn't fallen off yet - it can't as it is rope tied closed. GPS says we'll be home at 630 pm. SYDTR.
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Old 01-24-2008, 03:05 PM   #9
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Thumbs up

Rob,

We're all lucky to have an Airstream friend like you... and today it's John that is particularily lucky.

I'm glad things are going well.
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Old 01-24-2008, 07:42 PM   #10
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Congrats John, Welcome to the club.... Post pictures soon.
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Old 01-25-2008, 06:36 AM   #11
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Here are a few pics

Well, we made it.... we had an electrical issue right when we started where if you turned on the blinkers, or running lights, the brakes would come on.. so we had to snip the wires at the hubs and tow Freestyle... WE WERE CAREFUL!

At the toll booth coming into NY, when we started, the brakes on the curb side were on.... squealing the tires... and so we stopped.. backed up, and another 130 miles with no issues!!

It's now safely in John's driveway where the cleaning begins!

Thanks for a great recovery mission John.
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Rob, Zoe', Stanton, Bryce, Braedon and Finn Baker
Do you Listen to the www.theVAP.com
Plymouth, NY 13832
http://bakersacresofchenango.blogspot.com/
Courtesy parking
Flag Pole Holders - http://robsflagpoleholders.blogspot.com/

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Old 01-25-2008, 07:07 AM   #12
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Nice looking trailer. How did the Sprinter feel while towing?

My 62' Safari had one piece rims, not split.

Any interior photos?

Gary

ps. you will be removing that spare, Yes?
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Old 01-25-2008, 07:35 AM   #13
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Sprinter was SUPER

The Sprinter did very well - it's a 2500 model with a 140" wheel base and Turbo Diesel.. I'm sure John will charm in here... that spare.. not sure what John's intent is but you could keep it there no problem.
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http://bakersacresofchenango.blogspot.com/
Courtesy parking
Flag Pole Holders - http://robsflagpoleholders.blogspot.com/

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Old 01-25-2008, 08:43 AM   #14
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1961 28' Ambassador
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I am indeed lucky to have a friend like Rob. How many people do you know that would give up a day off to get up at 2:30am, drive over 700 miles to help pick up a friends new toy (with the real potential for being stuck on the side of the road with a breakdown for several hours), AND buy you lunch? If you have one friend like Rob, you are very lucky, indeed. Thanks Bud, I owe you big time.

As Rob has said, our recovery went more smoothly than I could have ever hoped. I had the van loaded with 5 new tires mounted on 5 good rims, 1 floor jack, 2 twenty ton bottle jacks, 1 high lift jack, 4 sets of inner bearings, outer bearings, seals, races, grease, brake cleaner, air compressor, impact wrench, and every hand tool I could fit in my tool bag. Once we got to the trailer and looked at the condition of the wheels and tires we decided to hook up and take it down the road, stopping every 5 miles or so to feel for heat in the bearings. After 4 stops and no heat showing, we towed to MajorsRV in Bourne, Ma to pick up some parts for Rob's bathroom re-do and then headed for home. We stopped every hour or so to check the tires / bearings, but made it home with no incident except for the mysterious brake activation coming out of the tow plaza.

The Sprinter towed wonderfully. I got 18.25mph ave. for the day. I normally get a little better than 22 unloaded, so I guess I got around 14mpg towing. I plan on having a transmission oil cooler fitted and will be researching brake controller wiring for the van.

As for the spare, I like it there. If Wally can tow 12,000 miles through Africa with a motorbike on his bumper, I can drive 200 miles down the interstate with a spare tire on the bumper.
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