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Old 04-05-2014, 10:02 PM   #1
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1962 19' Globetrotter
Santa Monica , California
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To restore or change, that is the question;)

Hi everyone.

I have a 1962 Globetrotter that I want to fix up and use. I'm not emotionally invested in retaining the original feel of the interior materials. I like the layout but would like to have some fun with the choices I make. Will I hurt the value of my trailer if I keep the layout but go a little crazy on the inside?

Are the interior panels aluminum or fiberglass? Is that something that is a nightmare to polish? I was thinking of airbrushing a sky and clouds on the walls and ceiling if stripping and polishing doesn't make sense.

Do composting toilets hurt the value? They seem so much more practical if you are not staying somewhere you can dump your tank frequently.
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Old 04-05-2014, 10:20 PM   #2
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Hollis , New Hampshire
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What a lot of questions!

In my opinion, you have a legacy trailer ( ie one produced before Wally Byams death in 1962) and it's a shortie..... So yes you will hurt the resale.

Much depends on whether the cabinets and such are in good shape, if they aren't then my answer would be different. Ditto on original lights, fixtures, original paint and so on.

With the exception of the endcaps the interior is aluminum and can be polished. Especially if you take them off and polish them flat.

Composting toilets are great for restorations but again appeal to a limited audience.

Post pictures so we can assess the "value " of your interior.

All in all, it's your trailer your decision but if I had a legacy trailer in great shape I'd think really hard about keeping it!
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Old 04-05-2014, 10:42 PM   #3
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1973 21' Globetrotter
Houston , Texas
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Its your trailer, so first and foremost, do with it what you like, and don't fixate too much on the value of "originalness."

That being said, to answer your questions, the sheets that make up your inner skins are made of aluminum. Some people have stripped and shined up the inner skins (I've seen some examples in 70's vintage trailers), but it is a lot of work. It would probably be less labor to remove the skins, buy fresh sheets, and put new in. One complaint I have heard over and again from people who have installed raw aluminum or stripped the originals is that it is hard to keep it shiny--every finger print becomes a blemish, etc.. The brand new trailers with the CCD interiors (shiny aluminum) are made of a factory coated aluminum so that they don't have this problem.

The 60's trailers typically had Zolotone paint on the interiors. If you want to keep your trailer close to an original look, then re-Zolotone it. As to anything else you do for design changes, if you are worried about how it may affect the resale value, then think of it just like a house. Most real estate agents would not advocate bizarre color schemes in the rooms, or additions of unconventional appliances or plumbing. But--are you worried more about how you are going to use it, or how the next owner will?

Of the thousands of trailers out there, my guess is that a fairly small percentage use composting toilets. If you install a grade-A composting toilet, perhaps the next owner will appreciate it, but nine out of ten of those potential buys might look at that toilet and think "job 1, reinstall normal plumbing."

Typically a 50 year old trailer, as found, is worth a few thousand depending on the condition of the shell. In a complete refurb, most of the trailer besides the shell gets thrown away, or is heavily repaired. The resale value is dependent upon the completeness of the refurb, and the quality of the work. So, take an old "field find" trailer, put some paint and superficial redecoration on it, and the value isn't going to deteriorate, but it is likely that most people aren't going to respect your improvements unless they have the same tastes as you, or your changes are very "main stream." I saw a trailer for sale recently that had a "cowboy" themed interior. The showerpan/tub had been replaced by a galvanized metal tub. A cowboy might love it, I looked at it and thought "and you want how much for this???"

Good luck!
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Old 04-05-2014, 11:05 PM   #4
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When I asked the same question about value, a wise person told me "There is a buyer for everything". Someone who is looking for original, will not buy it. Some who likes what you did will buy it. I would guess the person wanting original would most likely pay more, but how much more?
If you are planing to use the trailer for a long time, why should that matter. Make it your own. Something you will enjoy. If you go wild in the inside, do it in a way that you can tone it down when you go to sell it.
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Old 04-05-2014, 11:20 PM   #5
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1962 19' Globetrotter
Santa Monica , California
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Thank you all for your rapid response. Mine was definitely a field trailer, complete with field mice. I think it's going to be fun. I've been looking at photos on here, and it seems like everyone has a front gaucho, but mine had I a table I believe, so maybe it's not that original. The fabric was a pretty shot orange plaid.
I'm thinking to go free form with some Mad Man, George Jetson, PanAM styling.
Why is everyone taking out the tubs?
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Old 04-05-2014, 11:42 PM   #6
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Having just finished a 4 year gradual renovation of a vintage, but not legacy, '71 Tradewind, I'd advise against a total re-do, at least not right away.

We did a gradual replacement of damaged or terminally plastic interior parts. Our result is a hybrid, almost with an older feel since we used real wood. We kept all the same wall placements so it still resembles its original state. It just has a lot less plastic and a lot less "eau du cigar" fragrance creeping out of the walls. Our blog (see sig line) has some pictures.

I'd recommend getting to know your trailer before starting a remodel. Find out what you love, what you can live with and where you can best invest your time and energy...and money. The project will take more of all of those than you bargained for.
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Old 04-06-2014, 06:54 AM   #7
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1973 27' Overlander
Portsmouth , Virginia
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It's your trailer, so do with it what YOU LIKE, and if down the road you have to sell it, then the next owner will like your improvements or not.

With that said, don't get yourself wrapped around the axle about all these potential interior improvements without first assessing the basic structure and running gear. If the frame is rusted out and the axles are shot and the floor rotted through, putting lots of time and energy and money on the inside is essentially lipstick on a pig. You say that it was a field trailer, so that tells me that there was neglect and that doesn't bode well for for the parts you don't see. Tell us what you know about the basic condition and integrity of the trailer for some better feedback.
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Old 04-07-2014, 12:34 AM   #8
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1962 19' Globetrotter
Santa Monica , California
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Spent the day cleaning out the trailer. Only half done. Tired, covered in weird dust and wondering about what I've been breathing. Some cool finds: lots of owners manuals, some for stove, fridge, heating system, some typewritten thing to airstream users and a lifetime guarantee stuck to the inside of the closet door. This definitely was a dinette model, unless that was a late addition, as there's a hole in the front floor and I found a post holder under where the sink once was. Some of the wood is in good shape. Some of it is patched on. Built in Ohio.
A neighbor came by who has an '55 Airlight (?) and told me that if the floor is rotten I have to lift the whole trailer off the chassis to put a new floor in as they built the walls on top of the floors or the trailer won't be stable. Is this true? Some one please tell me that's not true.
Also, I was hoping not to have to pull the walls off. Anyone ever tried to new wires through by taping the new wire to the end of the old wire and grabbing the other end? I haven't, but thought it might work like replacing a drawstring.
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Old 04-07-2014, 12:36 AM   #9
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1962 19' Globetrotter
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How would I know that? do I need to take panels off the bottom?
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Old 04-07-2014, 12:38 AM   #10
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1962 19' Globetrotter
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Thanks. Unfortunately, I think you are correct about the time and money part.
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Old 04-07-2014, 12:38 AM   #11
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1962 19' Globetrotter
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Thanks. Unfortunately, I think you are right about the time and money part.
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Old 04-07-2014, 06:09 AM   #12
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Okay it is a 1962! If you want it to be a safe and useable airstream then you have few choices but to access the belly pan and replace if rotted the floor which is more labor than expense! Yes it will cost 2 to 5k to do the floor and axle but it at the same time helps you learn new skills and to know more about your air stream. If you want a restored 1962 then break out the loan application because it's gonna cost. As for the wire pull that you are talking about, most likely not because the wire is weaves through the ribs which are aluminum and can hold a wire well. The 1960's looks are great but it must also be functional unless you are running a museum. You can keep it as original as possible and still functional and as for value it will only ever be worth what the buyer is willing to pay.
All I post is just my humble opinion and well worth what you payed for it!
Oh and a cool find you have!
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Old 04-07-2014, 07:59 AM   #13
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1973 21' Globetrotter
Houston , Texas
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Before you panic, about the enormity of the tasks associated with electrical wiring and rotted floor, assess the situation. Go completely around the interior of your trailer with a sharp screwdriver or icepick and pock the floor right next to the wall. If it is solid everywhere, then you can breathe a big sigh of relief--no rotten floor. If you find rotten floor, then the next question is: how much is rotten. The usual places trailers rot is around the front and rear curved sections, near the door, and behind the refrigerator. If you only have a small section, you can repair the floor by doing a patch. If you need to replace the entire floor, then yes, you will have to lift the shell off the frame, but if your frame is in good shape and the floor only needs to be patched, you can fix it without a shell-off.

As to the wiring, No, you can't just pull the wires through like a drawstring because the wires are put together in a harness that runs from the back of the trailer, up along the center of the roof, and the wiring you see in the walls actually comes down from the centerline of the ceiling (like a "spine and ribs" sort of arrangement). So if there isn't a reason to replace the wiring, I would leave it alone. If you need to replace it, then you need to remove all of the interior panels. If you end up having to do floor repairs, you will have to remove the lower interior skins in the area you are working. When you see all the critters living in the insulation behind the wall, you will want to remove them all and replace all the insulation.

Good luck!
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Old 04-07-2014, 11:24 AM   #14
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1962 19' Globetrotter
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The neighbor who came by said it took four guys four hours to remove one exterior front end panel. Are the interior panels that hard as well to remove? They look different.
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