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Old 10-19-2007, 10:36 AM   #15
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i'm a vintage fan BUT if i bought a more modern trailer last year, i would have been camping in it a hundred times already. since i went vintage, it's turned into a major project and will continue to be for the foreseeable future.

no regrets on my end, but newer airstreams are instant gratification and vintage is more like very delayed gratification.
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Old 10-19-2007, 10:42 AM   #16
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We don't have the space or skills to redo an older airstream. I love the old ones and read the posts about the rehabs with a little envy, but a new one was the only way we could go. With the 2008, we have no major quality issues. The dealer took care of the little stuff. We use it and love it.
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Old 10-19-2007, 10:44 AM   #17
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Okay that is two that have said the same thing....if bought new you would be camping.....

What is stopping you from camping in your ongoing vintage restoration is planning and what you are willing to camp with until it is finished....

So lets lets see - with everything out of the trailer and at least the electrics working - you have one fancy tin tent - to enjoy....and if you have kids what a panic it would be having wall to wall matress on the floor - a porta potti behind the magic curtain and Mom the kitchen can be just as fun with at secured table and some key small appliances along with the BBQ.

facilities like showers come in all sorts of adventures - just check out the Poor Farmers OH and Apple Creek Facilities MI - OMG I tell you I would rather have a gallon of perfume than venture into those again - BUT hey it was an experience and did not stop me from venturing out there with an unfinished vintage rig....

Priorities fellas - get your project sorted out as to what gets you on the road safely first - and get that done - all of it... the rest can be done as individual projects until you are finished your entire project...

Sure you may have to duplicate efforts once and a while - but that is far better than NOT going camping for a weekend....

BE RESORUCEFUL FOLKS - GET BACK TO THE DAYS OF REAL CAMPING!!!!

But at least you will be off the ground nice and dry and warm!!!!
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Old 10-19-2007, 10:54 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanfood
i'm a vintage fan BUT if i bought a more modern trailer last year, i would have been camping in it a hundred times already. since i went vintage, it's turned into a major project and will continue to be for the foreseeable future.

no regrets on my end, but newer airstreams are instant gratification and vintage is more like very delayed gratification.
Some of the best advice I got on the subject of restoration was to minimize the amount of time at any one time that the camper would not be usable. I think there is some truth to the statement that a lot of restorations never get finished because of the front end burden. My 68 isn't finished by any stretch, but I have been able to keep it usable. Getting out in the thing while you are restoring it helps a whole bunch.

When it comes to alterations to a vintage unit, I am of two minds I suppose. On one hand, you want to make changes to it that will make it your own. For example, I rebuilt the folding table out of wood to replace the Formica and foam job that it had. I would also like to replace the gaucho covering with leather. Neither of these are in the range of being original. Ditto on the appliances and plumbing. On the other hand, I am uncomfortable with more radical redesigns where the unit is reasonably intact. To some extent, I feel like this Airstream isn't really mine, just something I am holding in trust.

You may or may not have a similar outlook; your coach may be pristine inside, or it may be gutted, I really don't know. I do think, however, that these sorts of things are worth thinking about before you wade in with a wrecking bar.
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Old 10-19-2007, 10:55 AM   #19
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When I sold our larger Boler to focus on the Airstream it was with the commitment to Donna that no matter what, by May, we would be camping. It may not have been finished, but I would make sure it was to a point where we could sleep in it, have a toilet, and water and wash capabilities. Oh yeah, and window coverings which was part of her "things to do". That was December 12th when I picked it up and wrote down the above. Scary stuff.

I thrashed over the Christmas holidays and every night after work and most weekends. I had lots of offers from friends for assistance but I felt it was important that I do this, with Donna being the only other contributor, so that when we were done it would be "ours".

We got it almost done, and done enough that through that summer we kicked backed, camped the heck out of it, made notes of what we wanted to change and then come fall it was back at it but at a much less frenzied pace.

I'm also one who can get mired down with things for a lot of reasons, but when it came to either having it done to a point and being able to go out and enjoy ourselves, or ruminating over what to do next, the lure of the wild won out. It helped to post a few pictures of the places we were intending to camp that summer in the shop, and pictures of what we started with and progress pictures as well so we could see how it was moving along.

Redoing a vintage trailer needing more than an interior refresh or a polish and perhaps tires and brakes and basic things is not for the faint of heart as those of us who have done it, or are doing it, know. Thus, if you like vintage but want to go camping sooner than later or have other things in life that can complicate your commitment to building it out I strongly encourage you to purchase one that is already done or darned close to it. There are wonderful vintage trailers ready to use for sale and although they are not cheap, they are also often being sold for less than it would cost a person to take a shell and build it out themselves.

As Dufferin noted though, even if you buy new, eventually it too will be vintage.

Barry
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Old 10-19-2007, 11:50 AM   #20
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In the last six months Pete and I went through the same question. New or vintage... Well, we ended up buying a slightly used 2006 25' Classic. We were ready to move up to something a little larger than our 2000 Bambi. We did not have the time or the skills to do a restoration ourselves and we feared that we would select a professional restorer (and we spoke to many) that would pull us down a rabbit hole of expense. Then we found a fantastic deal on what is now our new trailer. It didn't have the twin set up in the bedroom but that we can redo ourselves, without too much expense or time. All said and done, we would have loved to have a vintage trailer but we would have had to put our trust in someone else to make it a safe, affordable, and quality restoration and we just couldn't find that person.
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Old 10-19-2007, 12:40 PM   #21
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hi drsbeddor and welcome to the forums and the hunt!

LOTS of good info already here...

check out the threads on newer unit issues...

and read what is involved in vintage love...

IF you aren't scared away after doing so, we've failed

RULE # 1. the a/s has not been built, that can't be broken!

short of NOT buying any year,

clearly the safest, cost aware approach is to purchase a gently used recent unit (5-10-15 yrs)...

but 70s units are great starting points too...

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f353...oid-36858.html

all the linked/suggested threads are great reading and useful...

and i'll add these....

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f348...new-32343.html

while my favorite is this one; especially post 7 ....

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f48/...bad-21921.html

the member was determined to buy a specific model only to do a 180...

the result was happiness!

i think.

while another member in that thread went through 4 new units in a nanosecond...

till she was found by the right trailer!

again the result was happiness!

i think.

keep in mind that...

they are ALL vintage after leaving the lot...

but only the really special ones are used....

stylistic issues often hamper newbies from buying handmedowns...

but almost every year can be quickly upgraded to a fresh modern look...

frames, appliances, axles and so on are the money pits...

lastly almost no one mentions the seller issues...

new=dealer, so find a great one and use that warranty!

recent= dealer OR private, usually no warranty but seldom big hidden issues...

old=private, rarely a perfect, ready to go unit (ask soldermedic) and LOTS of potential hazards...

restored/customized=private or small shops, they cost a lot, look cool, but are seldom trouble free (again ask soldermedic)...

see rule #1 again and happy hunting.

cheers
2air'
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Old 10-19-2007, 12:58 PM   #22
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Buying...

Greatest truth is that we buy emotionally and justify it afterwards with logic.

Be VERY realistic about your record with past projects - If you have six half finished abandoned projects in your life now PLEASE do not buy a vintage Airstream and half destroy it... then let it rot in your yard.

If you really do enjoy projects and actually finish them, and you're willing to primitive A/S camp (Ladybug really did look cool with an air mattress, a table and a porta pottie!) then go vintage.

If you just want to ROCK and ROLL, buy new or very near new. Some of us upsize after only a year or two...... who moi? so you can get good deals for recent models.

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Old 10-19-2007, 01:17 PM   #23
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You can find a vintage trailer that is fully restored and ready to use, I did. You will pay for the work that the PO did, but it will still be much less then a newer unit. I camped at the Balloon Fiesta Rally next to the PO of my trailer. The joke was that he gave me the trailer and I paid for the restoration of his 58 Overlander. In guess in a way that is what happened. Either way it was a good deal for the both of us.
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Old 10-19-2007, 01:49 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GT1963
Okay that is two that have said the same thing....if bought new you would be camping.....

What is stopping you from camping in your ongoing vintage restoration is planning and what you are willing to camp with until it is finished....
um, this...

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Old 10-19-2007, 02:00 PM   #25
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I went vintage too because I think they just look cooler and are more lightweight. I found one with the ugliest interior you have ever seen and was so happy that it wasn't in prisitine original condition inside. It meant I wouldn't lose a wink tearing things out and making it what I wanted. Now I have the best of both worlds - a cool vintage exterior and an updated interior that fits my needs and tastes.
Another vote for vintage
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Old 10-19-2007, 02:44 PM   #26
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Did the original poster think there would be so much response to a simple question of old vs. new?
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Old 10-19-2007, 02:48 PM   #27
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Well David, with a piece of plywood, at least you'd be up off the ground...
Or for a little background camping you can be dry.

We aren't much better right now ~ we're off the ground and dry...but still need that piece of plywood.



Thank goodness we have two!

Shari
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Old 10-19-2007, 03:53 PM   #28
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Okay Okay you don't have to take it so litteral.....

I forgot about those who just have to do the full monty at all costs - but for some of us who are less inclined to change out the entire hull because of two small holes and a bit of surface rust - and can wait to play with the por 15 on the underside of the frame - we get by with the running gear up to snuff and all the other safety stuff just fine....besides I don't think I will have this trailer for 30 years or any other trailer for that matter and that is how we get underway......and enjoy the mid stage restoration...


Now grant it there is a down time of any vintage - just as there was for us - the whole months of April & May - so lets see we could compare that to the wait on the an order for a new one - or possibly the time it takes us to search for the perfect used one All in all there are issues with anything in life these days - and just finding the time to get out camping is another one...
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