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Old 05-03-2012, 11:01 PM   #1205
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". . . corrosion of this nature is not due to bad materials or quality but natural to aluminum exposed to the environment. The issue for Airstream is to block the aluminum from the elements."

'rod, that is the most useful statement I have read on this thread, a good starting point for maintaining our Airstreams, new from the factory and through its lifetime.

doug k
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Old 05-04-2012, 12:17 PM   #1206
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". . . corrosion of this nature is not due to bad materials or quality but natural to aluminum exposed to the environment. The issue for Airstream is to block the aluminum from the elements."

I agree, but may not interpret it the same way. The cut edges and drilled holes not treated with a sealant are far more likely to corrode. Airstream is not blocking corrosion that way. The frequent corrosion on door hinges and taillights indicates another problem as yet unsolved by the supplier or Airstream.

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Old 05-04-2012, 12:45 PM   #1207
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Well I'm at Jackson Center right now for warranty work on Monday. Have lots of filiform on a unit I've only had a year - including around at least five of the new marker lights. It is also spread around in other places and before you ask this unit has never been on salted roads and it has never been to the beach. I will be discussing this issue with Airstream Customer Service on Monday but given past experience of myself and others I'm not looking forward to much. Last June I bought the 16" tires/wheels from Airstream and all 4 of my wheels have filiform. These should be covered by a mfg warranty since I've had them for less than a year so we'll see what happens. I'm going to be one extremely unhappy camper if I don't at least get them replaced. Wonder what the JC jail is like?
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Old 05-04-2012, 01:01 PM   #1208
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I won't even try to interpret it, but I will give an opinion based on actual long term experience with the product: Airstream should either purchase quality components, or not compromise their integrity during the manufacture of the trailer, and/or stand behind their product when they fail to do so.

I have, and will continue to maintain my AS as recommended. We bought it for traveling, camping, rallying, and Airstreaming. Since the corrosion doesn't really affect the intended use, I try not to obsess about the appearance too much. I'm a bit of procrastinator sometimes, and intended to address the corrosion issue before now with all the great tips I've learned in this very thread, but the adversities and responsibilities of retirement seem to have me engaged in other opportunities (traveling, camping, rallying, and Airstreaming). Unfortunately, my corrosion will be on full display at Alumapalooza again this year.
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Old 05-04-2012, 01:04 PM   #1209
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Originally Posted by Al - K4GLU
Well I'm at Jackson Center right now for warranty work on Monday. Have lots of filiform on a unit I've only had a year - including around at least five of the new marker lights. It is also spread around in other places and before you ask this unit has never been on salted roads and it has never been to the beach. I will be discussing this issue with Airstream Customer Service on Monday but given past experience of myself and others I'm not looking forward to much. Last June I bought the 16" tires/wheels from Airstream and all 4 of my wheels have filiform. These should be covered by a mfg warranty since I've had them for less than a year so we'll see what happens. I'm going to be one extremely unhappy camper if I don't at least get them replaced. Wonder what the JC jail is like?
Sorry to hear of those problems, Al.

Keep your cool and post your findings.



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Old 05-04-2012, 01:12 PM   #1210
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Al - K4GLU View Post
Well I'm at Jackson Center right now for warranty work on Monday. Have lots of filiform on a unit I've only had a year - including around at least five of the new marker lights. ...
I really hope they work with you on the wheels, and the corrosion. If I recall, a while back they came to some kind of a compromise with some owners of recently manufactured Airstreams regarding the corrosion issues. Best of luck, and please keep us informed. You're going to love the people at Jackson Center.
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Old 05-04-2012, 02:23 PM   #1211
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"Wonder what the JC jail is like?"

At the factory?....they just put you the "rain locker".

Good Luck!

Bob
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Old 05-04-2012, 03:05 PM   #1212
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I really hope they work with you on the wheels, and the corrosion. If I recall, a while back they came to some kind of a compromise with some owners of recently manufactured Airstreams regarding the corrosion issues. Best of luck, and please keep us informed. You're going to love the people at Jackson Center.
Love them? I've been to JC many times and some of my experiences generate strong feelings but not love!
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Old 05-04-2012, 04:25 PM   #1213
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Love them? I've been to JC many times and some of my experiences generate strong feelings but not love!
Just to be clear, I was speaking of the citizens of JC. The AS employees were very nice, too. (Some nicer than others.) I have been there five times and haven't met anyone I didn't like. I didn't spend any time in their jail, though.
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Old 05-04-2012, 04:37 PM   #1214
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My previous unit was an early 2011 (28' FC), built in June, 2010. By the end of December 2010, I noticed that, despite my BI-WEEKLY applications of Protect-All, corrosion began appearing on several of the end-cap segments. It appeared literally overnight, and like Al's, the trailer had never been to the beach, or driven on a salt-treated road. So, I began adding Corrosion-X to my (already anal) routine, which seemed to stop it from spreading. This was particularly upsetting, since the 2007 25' FB I traded for that one had virtually no corrosion after 3 years, and neither did the early 2005 Bunkhouse (built in May, 2004), which preceeded that one, and for that matter, neither did the 2003 Safari 25B which preceeded that. Not one speck, folks...

Fortunately (for Airstream, I suppose), soon after the corrosion was discovered on the 28' FC, my RVing needs changed again, and the decision was made to trade it for a 30' Int'l...so, the corrosion issue with that particular unit was never addressed. (But that's OK, I'm "on top of it now", I said to myself).

My present unit was built in late August of last year, and I was well prepared for it's arrival, having adequately supplied myself with so much Corrosion-X that I began second-guessing my desicion to tow it with an F-150. In other words, I realized that I must either take a more pro-active approach to this corrosion thing, or just give up on Airstream. "Living with it" is not an option. (This disturbing trend being unacceptable).

Having determined, now, to pro-actively treat all the suspect areas of my beautiful new Airstream with Corrosion-X on a WEEKLY basis (including ALL rivit lines, door hinges and handle, etc., AND, I might add, being willing to endure the ridicule of neighbors, as well as Mrs. Evil, for my obsessive-compulsive behavior), as it's 6 month anniversary approached, I was beginning to feel a rewarding sense of victory. But wait!! Not so fast there, fmrcaptevil...suddenly, overnight, corrosion began creeping out from behind several running lights, simultaneously, SON-OF-A-GUN!! It just didn't occur to me that I needed to include the RUNNING LIGHTS in my ritual, for crying out loud!!??

Perhaps there's no connection, but, on every previous Airstream, each position light was surrounded by a bead of sealant; not this one...apparently, that time-consuming procedure didn't survive the latest round of cost-cutting...

Al, know that I'm behind you all the way!!
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Old 05-04-2012, 06:00 PM   #1215
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Just my experience....

Once the clear-coat has been compromised the ONLY way to STOP it is to re-clear the effected areas. Regular inspections required.

The X only postpones the inevitable if the area is left exposed, exposed, exposed, exposed, exposed, exposed......sorry, the record's scratched.

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Old 05-04-2012, 06:50 PM   #1216
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Bob, the clear coat is compromised at every edge and opening during the construction. Some of that we can't get to for touchup with clear, such as under the rivets and under the new non-removable (no point crying about it, that's the way they are) LED clearance lights.

The reality is we need the CorrosionX treatments from the get-go, as well as your very good advice to remove filiform and treat with touchup.

Disappointing for sure, but don't count on a magic bullet from Airstream or Alcoa. They both blew it on this one but I still wouldn't trade my Airstream for any other.
Meantime we'll be looking forward to hear what the Service Center does for Al'.

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Old 05-04-2012, 08:40 PM   #1217
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Some of that we can't get to for touchup with clear, such as under the rivets and under the new non-removable (no point crying about it, that's the way they are) LED clearance lights.

Who told you that the LED clearance lights were non-removable???

As you can see in the picture below, the light section snaps on to the chrome plastic base. There is about a 1 1/4" square piece of 3m trim tape in the center that "helps" hold the actual light to the chrome base. But, in reality, they pop right off. When reinstalling you will probably have to use a new piece of double sided tape to hold them. Once you pop them apart, they never seem as "tight" as previously.

The chrome base is screwed to the body with two screws, and there is a hole in the center for the wiring. Most probably, you will find that the screws have NO sealant on them as these lights (on alot of units) have a black foam gasket behind them (even though some trailers DON'T have the foam gasket but do have a slathering of Acryl-R around the chrome base). But, having a foam gasket in no way negates the need for actual sealant on the screws and the point in which the wiring penetrates the trailer.

Also note that the plastic reflectors mounted to the sides of the trailer have NO protection or sealant whatsoever on either the screws or around the edges of the reflectors.

The proper way to address corrosion for the clearance lights and reflectors is to remove them and put a big glob of Acryl-R in the screwholes, then install stainless screws. The sealant in the holes should prevent most of the corrosion. Do the same for the reflectors; as they are installed from the factory they can easily leak water RIGHT to the floor.

Since the the screws behind the LED clearance lights are hidden between the light and the chrome base, glob up the screwheads with Acryl-R. Doing all this, WITH the gasket, and you don't HAVE to use Acryl-R around the lights as that is a patch for an improperly sealed light (and it usually looks globbed on).

Here is a picture of how the lights pop off:



I was very surprised on my trailer when I saw that the screws on these areas had no sealant whatsoever...and that's clearly what led to the filiform crawling out from underneath them. But if you catch it before it starts, it's a simple fix.

Hope this helps,
Jeff
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Old 05-04-2012, 09:50 PM   #1218
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Jeff, posts 1151, 1176, 1179 on this thread, and another thread where a dealership broke them, says break to remove.

But first thing in the morning I'll try your method, which I prefer. Thanks so very much for the info and photo!

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