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Old 09-16-2008, 10:13 PM   #1
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As I was heading to my car this evening after work I noticed something in the parking lot I hadn't seen before. I'm wondering how many of you can guess what it is. Needless to say I high tailed it home to get my camera, came back and took a bunch of pictures.

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I left a note on the windshield for the owner and surprisingly he called me a little while ago and we had a nice chat. I'm having dinner with him tomorrow after work and will provide more details then .

Brad
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Old 09-16-2008, 10:27 PM   #2
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That's a "sporty" looking outfit. Let us know what you find out.
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Old 09-17-2008, 12:10 AM   #3
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Might be a modified Argosy MH...
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Old 09-17-2008, 12:22 AM   #4
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looks like a 74-76, 20 ft argosy, with the smaller tires and a 350? perhaps....

they have modified the entry door with a window, and of course the box and tail fin, aft.

the rear wheel well skirts and bulging front wheel wells with 'venting' are add ons too...

but the rearview mirrors are originals, it would look better with the elecric heated newer mirrors.

of course the 'a/s badging is the easiest alteration...

action paint stripes look ok, IF the photos color is correct they've painted the whole thing a more whitish/putty color.

the rear box may house a genset, circus arcade booth, mushroom farm or meth lab...

cheer
2air'
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Old 09-17-2008, 08:13 AM   #5
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Yes, it is a 74 Argosy. The fact that it was an Argosy became pretty apparent to me yesterday when I got up close to look at it. He's done some interesting cosmetic and mechanical mods to the motorhome. I'm sure our dinner conversation is going to be rather interesting because he tows an Ambassador 28' trailer that he's converted into a hauler for his dune buggy and other toys. I had to laugh when I heard that because that's exactly what we're going to be using ours for. We have an 1974 Excella 500 that is gutted and being converted to a 2 car race car hauler. Small world.

More later.........

Brad
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Old 09-17-2008, 10:02 AM   #6
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I like it......
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Old 09-17-2008, 11:11 PM   #7
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Sweet. If he painted the trailer the same way it would look like a monorail cruising down the road.
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Old 09-17-2008, 11:45 PM   #8
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I had a pleasant and enlightening talk with David this evening over dinner. All the modifications he pretty much did himself. The engine has been throughly gone through and the body was modified as shown in the pictures for better aerodynamics. He said the aerodynamic changes allows him to get around 12 mpg around town. I assume around town to David means cruising the freeways in the L.A. area.

Here are a few more pictures of the left side of Argosy and the instrument cluster. David made the entire dash himself.

In another post I'll try and detail all of the changes he made to the engine, dash and body. I'm still trying to absorb it all .

He says he can easily tow his 28 Ambassador trailer loaded with the dune buggy and all his gear at 70 mph climbing the grades leading out of the L.A. basin. When he is towing his usual load at 70 mph (3500 rpm) the mileage will drop to about 8 mpg. I can only imagine what kind of mileage he would get if he towed at 60 mph like I do .

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Old 09-18-2008, 05:58 AM   #9
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So, did you invite him to the forums? I know pictures don't show everything, but is it as cleanly done in person as it looks?
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Old 09-18-2008, 09:45 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overlander63 View Post
So, did you invite him to the forums? I know pictures don't show everything, but is it as cleanly done in person as it looks?
When I mentioned to David that I had posted some pictures on an forum for Airstreams he said "you mean AirstreamForums?". So he is aware of this site but I don't think he's visited for a while.

When I first noticed the Motorhome and started walking towards it I wasn't sure what it was. As I got closer I could see the obvious lines of an Argosy but there was enough stuff changed or modified that I wasn't sure what to make of it. Upon closer look I was thinking it might possibly be a product of the commercial division. All of the lines and the moldings are done extremely well. Everything blends in as it should and the lines flow well together. I was talking to Susan on the phone while I was looking at it and told her my inital reaction was it might be an Airstream factory job.

Bottom line is I'm impressed with his modeling skills. Which only makes since because what he does for a living is models full sized concept cars for manufacturers. He says he REALLY enjoys his job, heck who wouldn't enjoy doing something like that for a living .

More to come......

Brad
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Old 09-19-2008, 01:21 PM   #11
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Here is a list of modifications and upgrades that David has made to the Argosy. I'm sure there are a lot more I don't know about yet and I hope to meet with him a time or two yet. He told me the HP and Torque numbers but I forgot them. He did say that while towing his loaded trailer he walks right by the diesel dually pickups pulling loads up the hills around Southern California.

Engine & Engine compartment
Batteries relocated to the right lower front fender area (see attached pic)
Headers with thermocouples for monitoring temperature (see attached pic)
Small "peanut exhaust" heads
Largest oil filter he can find and then wraps it in reflective heat shield tape
Two (2) transmission coolers that are stacked with a puller fan right side of grille (see attached pic)
The original transmission cooler is no longer in front of the radiator (see attached pic)
One engine oil cooler with puller fan on left side of grille (see attached pic)
Both engine and transmission coolers have thermostats installed
Water spray system to spray mist on the radiators and coolers when towing through the desert manually controlled from the dash
All of the extra holes in the front grille are were added (or removed?!) to allow for more cooling air flow
The mechanical fan & clutch are still installed
Large pusher cooling fan on the front of the condenser & radiator
Performer Intake manifold
Hi performance RV towing cam
Hi performance valve springs
5-angle grind on the valves
All gaskets were port matched
800 CFM Quadrajet carburetor (might switch to 650 CFM for even more torque)
MSD with knock sensor and advance/retard control with rpm limit control

Dash Instruments
Fuel gauge
Tachometer
Speedometer
Oil temp gauge
Water temp gauge
Transmission temp gauge
Vacuum gauge
Voltmeter
Air/Fuel ratio indicator
Knock sensor

The engine and transmission temperature gauges can be switch to both read the same sensor to verify gauge functionality.
He indicated to me the Argosy brakes are no where near adequate to stop the Motorhome when he is towing so the trailer brakes have to be in good working order.

He has also installed front and rear air bags for better ride and control. There was a large fuel tank added to the rear of the motorhome in the extension pos that he added to the back.


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Old 09-20-2008, 10:07 AM   #12
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so how much can you tow with an argosy moho? without all those modifications?
just thinking it would be a great way to travel with the mother-in-law, tow an extra trailer for her!
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Old 09-20-2008, 04:12 PM   #13
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It is funny you mention the Mother In Law unit.
When we went to PEI this summer we were taking my Mother and our teenage daughters which seemed a little much for two weeks.
So we towed with a Sprinter Van Conversion for the girls to stay in.
Not my first choice of tow vehicle but on this trip the liveability advantages outweighed the fun of driving and it worked out well.

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Old 06-08-2009, 11:41 PM   #14
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ok thats it! I'm remaking my dash...that little bug is awesome!
...would have loved to see more interior pics.
thanks so much for posting this.
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