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Old 03-17-2014, 06:04 PM   #1835
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Originally Posted by Brokerchris View Post
Wow- this rabbit hole goes deep.

We took delivery of a 2013 23FB in November and the handle and rear bumper show signs of corrosion (handle is the worst).

We live and store the A/S outside and only 10 mins from the ocean. I would expect this on lower quality trailers- seems pretty crappy to have this happening so soon.
The unprotected metal of Airstreams (or any RV) exposed to coastal salt air or northern road salt will corrode rather quickly and needs a corrosion protection and control plan.

Some methods are suggested in this thread but comes down to regular cleaning, inspections, and treatment with protective products, and repair of corroded areas to control spread.

We live inland but travel widely. An effective system for us has been washing right after exposure to salt environment, quarterly inspections followed by treating the shell panel edges, rivets, and accessories with Corrosion X, and spraying the underbody steel with Boeshield T9. No corrosion yet but will carefully clean it and paint it with clear coat or Nyalic. Any nicks I see I touch them up with a clear coat pen. Most folks apply a coat of wax or sealant (I like Glare products for this) frequently enough to ensure the surfaces are protected, but I doubt that in itself will prevent corrosion of exposed metal.

Anyone with a new trailer should apply corrosion protection products as soon as it comes home and follow regularly according to environmental conditions to keep your Airstream looking good.

That's the easiest way to deal with it.
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Old 03-19-2014, 09:39 AM   #1836
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Howard L. ,
I'm just up the road from you in North Dallas area. I've got the 25 Safari.
I also have some rivet filliform around the top front, around both tail light trim pieces.
My question is how deep do you sand the aluminum? Just till you remove the filliform, or deeper?
Thanks, Dave in Dallas
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Old 03-19-2014, 10:34 PM   #1837
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Originally Posted by David Logue View Post
Howard L. ,
I'm just up the road from you in North Dallas area. I've got the 25 Safari.
I also have some rivet filliform around the top front, around both tail light trim pieces.
My question is how deep do you sand the aluminum? Just till you remove the filliform, or deeper?
Thanks, Dave in Dallas
Look at post 1825 above. If you sand the filiform away, it will change the skin color, where sanded, to a dull gray. Be sure you want to get in that deep before you do anything other than corrosion X followed by re-sealing with a touch up of clear coat. The photos in post 1825 show before, after sanding and spray paint I used to closely restore the Alcoa look. To get the sanded, and then re-spray painted area to look as natural as possible, you have to build a stand off/taped off area out of poster board. This minimizes the area of spray and keeps from Spraying a hard edge. If you choose to sand, just enough to remove the filiform lines is sufficient--just the surface. That is where the filiform is, under the clear coat and on AL surface.Click image for larger version

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ID:	207868 Dremel has a little buffing wheel (course is tan and fine is black) that works well. If you sand and repaint with the metallic paint, shoot a coat of clear coat over the area to reseal.

This is all a lot of work, and the metallic paint is good, but not a perfect match. Unless your filiform is major, I would recommend corrosion x , wipe off then reseal with clear coat.
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Old 03-20-2014, 09:50 AM   #1838
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Howard, thank you for the advice. I'll be giving it a try.
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Old 03-20-2014, 12:06 PM   #1839
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Why don't the older Airstreams corrode? My 2010 has it bad. I got nothing from the dealer or Jackson Center. You appear to blame us for not maintaining but I've been driving cars for 50 years and not since the "old days" do I have rust or corrosion problems. This is not MY problem, this is Airstream's problem, and they continue to ignore it. The Airstream name has historically denoted quality, but not anymore.
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Old 03-20-2014, 01:10 PM   #1840
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The older Airstreams do corrode if exposed to corrosive environment, sometimes the frames fall part, but the present filiform is due to the Alcoa clear-coated panels Airstream has used for the past 15 years. Those previously clear coated by Airstream don't look so good either after years of weather exposure, especially sun. Go figure.

Blaming anyone won't help your Airstream. There are some excellent methods described in this thread to repair and manage the corrosion, and it is especially important for those using their Airstreams near corrosive environments. Most of us.

This is really not that hard to do. It takes some time. I would expect for those who are not inclined to do this themselves, there would be Airstream repair shops who know how to care for it. But they must know what they are doing.

Any good shop recommendations?
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Old 03-20-2014, 01:18 PM   #1841
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I get it. When someone drops 50K or 100K on a trailer it is hard to watch it age, but it does.

The best compromise is to help it to age gracefully.

I can't say why, but any clear over a metal finish is subject to accelerated finish degradation.

My observation says this just is.

I doubt that my 72 had 5 square feet of the clear finish or traces thereof left on it.
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Old 03-20-2014, 07:36 PM   #1842
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Originally Posted by Matt Kline View Post
Why don't the older Airstreams corrode? My 2010 has it bad. I got nothing from the dealer or Jackson Center. You appear to blame us for not maintaining but I've been driving cars for 50 years and not since the "old days" do I have rust or corrosion problems. This is not MY problem, this is Airstream's problem, and they continue to ignore it. The Airstream name has historically denoted quality, but not anymore.
Matt, I feel sure no one was blaming "us", the owners. Every one of us (and I hate this comment, but I'll use it) feel your pain. I'm not going to repeat the words I used when I first found a good bit of Filiform on my brand new trailer, but I was pissed. However, you know what, no one who comes up to praise the Flying Cloud when we are camping notice any of the problems. I see it, but no one else does. Plus, It's surface only and does not effect integrity.
Think about it, if you bought a brand new automobile where all body panels were flat rolled metal, then primed and painted, then formed to the shape of doors, fenders, etc. and then finally riveted and bolted together there would be places where the paint would be compromised. If you parked it next to the beach for a couple of weeks, I'm going to bet you some rust would show up on a skinned edge, next to a bolt or rivet , etc.
I know this thread is overpowering, but go back through anyway. Doug, Robert Cross and many others have been dealing with this as preventative maint. Issue for years and have found successful ways to stop it and repair it. I will tell you from my own experience, once you have followed suggestions here and touched up missing clear coat areas you will have major control of the problem. How often you actually do the preventative maint. Is up to you, but at least after every wash job, go over, look at every rivet, light fixture, exposed seam edge and especially the rounded surfaces of the end caps. Corrosion X and re-clear coat any little white lines that have shown up.
Filiform or not, it's still Airstream and there is no substitute.
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Old 03-20-2014, 08:07 PM   #1843
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Sorry Matt, after posting the above, I see you have posted several comments on another corrosion thread in 2011 and 12. But I stand by what said. If you inspect, treat any new areas with corrosion X, Corrosion Block, CRC whatever. Wipe off with a clean rag and then touch up with clear coat that problem area will be stopped. I scratch the area ever so slightly with a needle, apply and let soak for a while, Corrosion X. Wipe off excess C X with a dry rag ( no thinner or solvent) then touch up cover the area with clear coat.
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Old 03-24-2014, 10:27 AM   #1844
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We have an '06 28 ft Safari and have spots of this corrosion on the tail lights and along one side seam. From what I have read DO NOT use steel wool, but do use sandpaper. There are products recommended that Airstream sells, and articles in literature on corrosion that recommend sacrificial anode attachments. I have only sanded slightly and stopped because I was not sure where to go from there. You are right. It is a shame to have an expensive trailer like this with a basic potentially disfiguring and expensive problem.
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Old 04-05-2014, 02:17 PM   #1845
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Hi Guys,
Forgive me for sounding so naive but I need to attend to my fili and would like some direction. I have sprayed the corrosion x along the seam line, light bezels and door handles let it sit for about 5 minutes. Is that all I have to do before wiping it off? Is overspray ok or should I tape off the area?

I noticed that some of the fili turned from white to grey so I'm guessing that's the x neutralizing the fili? Other spots remain white ? I read somewhere that someone pokes a small hole in the filiform then sprays with x, wipes off then seals with the touch up pen? Does anyone else have good results with this technique?

I live about 5 miles from the ocean and my rig is really starting show the fili so whatever suggestions you all may have are much appreciated.

many thanks
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Old 04-05-2014, 03:06 PM   #1846
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A lot of people are saying they don't expose there trailer to road salt and don't live near the ocean ,I was in jackson Center at the end of March and one other airstream owner told me that there was a couple picking up airstreams at the factory and delivering them to a dealer and this is there job they do this all the time!well they just hookup there tow vehicle and tow them on the road ,I was certain that Ohio had salt still on the roads I don't know how far and to what dealer but these trailers got a salt bath just after been built! Maybe this has to do with some of the corrosion problems For some trailers ! My trailer was built in June so it should not have had a salt bath, but still have some corrosion problems, I have never owned any product that went down hill so fast ! None ! My cars usually last 10 years corrosion free even exposed to road salt , I was in the automotive field and I used to say Cadillac cars were G.M. Ginny pigs cars if it was good it would go to Buick or olds at the time if no good it was gone ,( sorry Cadillac owners) best engine Cadillac had was the Oldsmobile 307ci,in there fleetwood, now for airstream it's suppose to be the Cadillac of trailers my opinion has changed since owning one, and since it going down hill so fast in two years,( Don't make changes only improvements) airstream needs to improve quick or once you have a bad name it takes forever to get your name back in the good books( a generation or two,)or more and with the internet the word spreads fast, I like airstream but I'm really disappointed with them.
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Old 04-06-2014, 07:00 AM   #1847
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airstream needs to improve quick or once you have a bad name it takes forever to get your name back in the good books( a generation or two,)or more and with the internet the word spreads fast, I like airstream but I'm really disappointed with them.
I have had to replace virtually all the rivets under our trailer due to corrosion that I am almost certain is road salt related. We take the trailer south each winter, and even though I try hard to wash it well when we arrive, I think the salt spray finds its way inside the belly pans and just lies there - to be reactivated every time it gets wet.

Not only do the rivets fail, but the entire area on the aluminum skin around the rivet corrodes away so I need to make large washers to re-secure everything.

This I believe is the result of galvanic corrosion due to the aluminum wrap being riveted to steel cross members.

What really amazed me is that a few years ago I had to have a couple of the painted aluminum wraps replaced at JC due to minor accident damage. The new wraps were rotted through within two seasons. Not very impressive.

Brian.
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Old 04-06-2014, 09:52 PM   #1848
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To silverwheels.

""I read somewhere that someone pokes a small hole in the filiform then sprays with x, wipes off then seals with the touch up pen? Does anyone else have good results with this technique?""

Yes, see above post. Your answers are here. You will have to read through these pages but that will take a lot less time than trial and error yourself.
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