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Old 06-25-2015, 10:42 PM   #1
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1965 17' Caravel
1965 17' Caravel
Memphis , Tennessee
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 206
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Our Second Caravel "Gypsy"

As I read other threads on this forum I read about others that decide to take on another trailer once they finish one. I always thought if I was going to do that I would pick another size, or even another brand trailer. I was perfectly happy to leave well enough alone and just enjoy Jewel. We were doing just that on a recent Louisiana camping trip. We were there for a week enjoying some fishing, relaxing and a few things New Orleans had to offer. My wife was conversing with a friend one day while we were there and she made mention of one of our old friends that needed to sell his Caravel. I knew he had this trailer, but I didn't know all the details. He told me at one time it was a 68 model, and I was not jealous as mine was a 65 and I have always thought the 65 was the best year for the Caravel. Our friend is an artsy type of guy, he is a retired Photographer and a very smart dude. He would surly know what year his trailer is! Well, as it turned out it is a 65 just like ours.

We conversed a little during my vacation and some afterward. He sent me some photos and I knew at that point it was a 65 - the only year the caravel had a Jalousie window. A few days or weeks (I can't remember now) went by and I finally went over to his house to look over the trailer. It was a little dirtier than Jewel was when I first laid eyes on her, but not bad and this one looks like the skin is in good condition under all that tree sap and dirt. So we visited inside his trailer, ants were scurrying along the window seal behind him, and I was checking out the floor, appliances, bathroom and asking lots of questions. He thinks the plumbing is good, the electricity works, and all the appliances worked when he last used it. Keep in mind it has Tennessee Bicentennial plates. That means it hasn't been registered since '96! So, we talked a little more and I found out what he wanted for the trailer. I told him I would think about it, so I went on my way.

I went home that night and for the next day or so, I couldn't get his trailer out of my mind. I know very little about Jewel's history, as I bought it from a reseller. This one has a soul, not that Jewel doesn't, but I am not sure where all she has been. This one has been around the country with my friend and I can feel her soul. He got his masters in Photography in New Mexico. He went back there often and lived in the trailer there. He lived a few years in Florida in it. He lived in a professors driveway when he moved back to Memphis in it. So, it does have a soul, it just needs to live on.

So, I decided to save this trailer and let it's soul live on. When I was asking my friend about what he know about it's history he said he bought it from a family of gypsies down in Mississippi. That stuck with me, so her name is "Gypsy".

The retrieval... My friend had an old 1979 ford van that had been sitting about as long as the trailer has. We had a couple of thoughts about how to get it out of the way to access the trailer. We could put a new battery in it and hope it started, or we could pull it out of the way with anther vehicle. We chose to try the later. I got a harbor freight strap and tied it on his truck and the van. Another friend was to steer the van. Well, it wouldn't budge. The emergency brake has been engaged since 1996! It would not release as much as we tried. He finally called a parts yard to come and get the van. They hauled it off and gave him $250. Now I could replace Gypsy's flat tires with wheels off of Jewel. We pulled her out of her midtown back yard and on to the road for the first time in 19 years. The tail lights and trailer bakes work! Gypsy was an easy tow across town to her new home. She still has that tree sap and dirt on her. I really want to leave it for a while, for she will never look that way again. It will be a little sad to clean her up, but I will have to do that sooner or later. Right now I am enjoying looking at her just the way she sits. Her serial number is 46 units newer than Jewel, but she looks much older an wiser. In time she will look more like a twin.
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Old 08-17-2015, 08:35 PM   #2
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1965 17' Caravel
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thats great

fantastic. i can understand how you think that the 65 caravel is the best. i keep looking at other trailers but in the end think that what i have cant be beat. and it is a long story but i bought mine without knowing anything about airstreams and lucked out big time.
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Old 08-18-2015, 10:11 AM   #3
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1965 17' Caravel
1965 17' Caravel
Memphis , Tennessee
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 206
Images: 21
If we knew what we were getting into we probably wouldn't start a project like this. But at some point you get hooked! I guess I am hooked.
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Old 08-18-2015, 10:40 AM   #4
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1968 17' Caravel
Battle Ground , Washington
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jewel65 View Post
He told me at one time it was a 68 model, and I was not jealous as mine was a 65 and I have always thought the 65 was the best year for the Caravel.
Well you can't be right about everything

Congrats, Gypsy sounds like a wonderful find! I understand what you mean about having a soul, I feel the same way about mine. Mine has had three owners in 46 years, and I feel like it's history goes with it and makes it less of an inanimate object.

I think Gypsy is in good hands!
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Old 08-19-2015, 09:52 PM   #5
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1965 17' Caravel
1965 17' Caravel
Memphis , Tennessee
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 206
Images: 21
Thanks Stephanie! No offense, we all have our favorites and I think all Caravels are great trailers and yours looks especially nice. I was just surprised to find another one the same year in my same city... and it was a friend that owned it the whole time I was restoring ours! Now I need to find time to get started on this one. Temperatures are starting to get milder, so I need to get busy!
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