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Old 08-26-2013, 01:05 AM   #1
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Help.... popped rivets?

Hey everyone,
I just bought my 06 19' Bambi in June and have only had it out on a couple local trips and was planning a trip to the Grand Tetons, Yellowstone etc. and low and behold today when I was looking things over I noticed 3 popped rivets inside along and above the top hinge side of the door and in succession. I've had issues with the top hinge pin working loose and door not closing smoothly. I use a wd hitch and I don't believe it is too tight.

Does anyone know what could be the cause and can the rivets be replaced easily? living in San Diego I'm now wondering if a trip of this length might be a bit much for a first timer. I just bought a Yamaha 2400 generator and was looking fwd to a 2 1/2 week journey. Any ideas or help is so appreciated!

To all that respond, my thanks,
Mark and Laurie
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Old 08-26-2013, 01:52 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Markj55 View Post
Hey everyone,
I just bought my 06 19' Bambi in June and have only had it out on a couple local trips and was planning a trip to the Grand Tetons, Yellowstone etc. and low and behold today when I was looking things over I noticed 3 popped rivets inside along and above the top hinge side of the door and in succession. I've had issues with the top hinge pin working loose and door not closing smoothly. I use a wd hitch and I don't believe it is too tight.

Does anyone know what could be the cause and can the rivets be replaced easily? living in San Diego I'm now wondering if a trip of this length might be a bit much for a first timer. I just bought a Yamaha 2400 generator and was looking fwd to a 2 1/2 week journey. Any ideas or help is so appreciated!

To all that respond, my thanks,
Mark and Laurie

Hi, it might be time for Centramatics and having your wheels re-balanced. Pop rivets are easy to do. And do not try to level your trailer with your stabilizers. [suggestions]
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Old 08-26-2013, 05:27 AM   #3
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Hey Mark, some popped rivets here and there are part of ownership. tThey can be related to rough roads, too stiff tv/hitching equipment, or as Bob said, unbalanced wheels.

Ours pops them some times in the same area as yours. My guess is many that pop are in this same area.....near the door. Perhaps because the door opening itself causes a weak point in the structure. Check the things you can, get a pop rivet gun and rivets, replace them.

Hit the road, have a great trip!!!!!

John
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Old 08-26-2013, 05:37 AM   #4
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Hi, it might be time for Centramatics and having your wheels re-balanced. Pop rivets are easy to do. And do not try to level your trailer with your stabilizers. [suggestions]

^
X2

Your door problem could very well be caused by frame twist caused by too much weight on the stabilizers.

The Centramatics WORK.

Bob
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Old 08-26-2013, 07:30 AM   #5
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What size load bars are you using? I would not think you would need much. Pop rivets are easy to replace. The door is a problem area because there is a BIG HOLE in the skin there. Also it is constantly being opened and shut and that causes rivets to wiggle loose. I would start by measuring the hitch weight and size the load bars accordingly. Also if you have a very stiff tow vehicle that could also cause problems.


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Old 08-26-2013, 09:28 AM   #6
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Being the rivet problem is next to the door, and you have other door issues, that's where I would look.

As said earlier, be sure your stabilizers are lightly applied so as not to twist the trailer.

Many of not most Airstream doors come from the factory with less than optimal adjustment. You can do it yourself easily, but being very careful not to overdo it and bend something.

Here's an excellent video to adjust the door. We used it and our's closes easily and tightly without a slam and a crash.

Airstream How To: Adjusting Trailer Main Doors - YouTube

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Old 08-26-2013, 09:59 AM   #7
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I purchased my 06 in 09 and it had been pulled around with a very stout TV. The hitch was pretty tight and there were three popped rivets on the inside, one by the door, one on the opposite side of the trailer and one in the bathroom. We also noticed that the drawer under the dinette would open during transit.

With my Tundra I dialed in the hitch where all is level and there is not nearly as much force on the bars as before. I also purchased 4 new tires and had them balanced. No centramatics for me yet. Everything is better now and even the drawer stays closed.

I did pop a rivet this summer when I had to jack up the trailer for a flat tire. I would check the hitch, balance the tires and that alone should help.
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Old 08-26-2013, 03:32 PM   #8
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Hey guys thanks for the advice. I was intending to have the wheels balanced so I do that today. My wd sway bar was fairly tight the way the previous owner told me to do it. I've since loosened it, and I'm not sure when the rivets popped. I'll replace them and keep an eye on things. I guess a rivet gun from home depot is sufficient and I'm assuming aluminum shafted rivets. As for the door not shutting easily enough, I adjusted it up by cutting a slot in a metal washer, slid it through the hinge pin (top and bottom hinge) and it closes perfectly because the latch lines up with the striker bolt. The problem is, I'm sure the washer won't stay without some kind of keeper....any advice or help?

As for the wd hitch, it's rating at 12,000lb trailer weight w/a hitch weight of 1,000lbs or 1,200lbs depending on the position in the receiver on the truck. I'm towing with an 05 V8 Tundra with tow package.
Thanks again for the help and advice.
Mark
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Old 08-26-2013, 03:47 PM   #9
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Markj...we have the same model/year of Bambi as you have, and we had a series of popped rivets in the same area ... it's not uncommon and can be caused by a number of factors and combination of factors, as noted in earlier posts. When we rebalanced the tires and got Centramatics the problem was reduced significantly. We still occasionally get a popped rivet here and there but the location is random, so I attribute it more to road stress than anything else. If the rivets pop in the same place repeatedly there is something else going on that needs attention. Replacing the rivets is not difficult .. and I might add that we have never popped a rivet that we have replaced.
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Old 08-26-2013, 04:00 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Markj55 View Post
Hey guys thanks for the advice. I was intending to have the wheels balanced so I do that today. My wd sway bar was fairly tight the way the previous owner told me to do it. I've since loosened it, and I'm not sure when the rivets popped. I'll replace them and keep an eye on things. I guess a rivet gun from home depot is sufficient and I'm assuming aluminum shafted rivets. As for the door not shutting easily enough, I adjusted it up by cutting a slot in a metal washer, slid it through the hinge pin (top and bottom hinge) and it closes perfectly because the latch lines up with the striker bolt. The problem is, I'm sure the washer won't stay without some kind of keeper....any advice or help?

As for the wd hitch, it's rating at 12,000lb trailer weight w/a hitch weight of 1,000lbs or 1,200lbs depending on the position in the receiver on the truck. I'm towing with an 05 V8 Tundra with tow package.
Thanks again for the help and advice.
Mark
Mark,

You know the hitch rating, what weight bars are you using?

I think 800lb bars for your WD would be more than enough for your trailer.

Have you been to the scales to get the set-up diled in?

Bob
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Old 08-26-2013, 04:02 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Markj55 View Post

As for the wd hitch, it's rating at 12,000lb trailer weight w/a hitch weight of 1,000lbs or 1,200lbs depending on the position in the receiver on the truck. I'm towing with an 05 V8 Tundra with tow package.
Thanks again for the help and advice.
Mark
I'd say that WDH set-up that you are using is way over kill.... WAY overkill!

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Old 08-26-2013, 05:30 PM   #12
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That's too heavy a w.d. hitch, and if it doesn't have tapered bars it's also too stiff.

Our dealer installed a 10K Equal-I-Zer on our new 20' Airstream a few years ago and it was too stiff for the trailer. I loosened the bars and lost some steering control, too light on truck front axle. We've got a new Airstream with the right w.d bars and everything is much better.

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Old 08-26-2013, 05:39 PM   #13
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To answer your rivet question, you want button head 1/8" rivets. All aluminum, body and mandrel. the shortest have a grip range of about .025 to .062 for 1 skin layer to a c channel and the next length is about .063 to .096 or so for attaching to the thicker ribs. The big box stores all carry a fair quality pop rivet gun and rivet assortment that should work fine.
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Old 08-26-2013, 05:48 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Markj55 View Post
Hey guys thanks for the advice. I was intending to have the wheels balanced so I do that today. My wd sway bar was fairly tight the way the previous owner told me to do it. I've since loosened it, and I'm not sure when the rivets popped. I'll replace them and keep an eye on things. I guess a rivet gun from home depot is sufficient and I'm assuming aluminum shafted rivets. As for the door not shutting easily enough, I adjusted it up by cutting a slot in a metal washer, slid it through the hinge pin (top and bottom hinge) and it closes perfectly because the latch lines up with the striker bolt. The problem is, I'm sure the washer won't stay without some kind of keeper....any advice or help?

As for the wd hitch, it's rating at 12,000lb trailer weight w/a hitch weight of 1,000lbs or 1,200lbs depending on the position in the receiver on the truck. I'm towing with an 05 V8 Tundra with tow package.
Thanks again for the help and advice.
Mark
Hi, Mark; I used "E" Clips on my hinge pins and they stay put.
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