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Old 07-31-2013, 09:27 AM   #1
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1973 Argosy 20'

Hi I'm new to this website and Airstream. I'm looking to buy this trailer. It's pretty rough but cheap. Any advice would be GREATLY appreciated. Thanks, AJB



1973 Airstream 20'
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Old 07-31-2013, 11:00 AM   #2
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It looks like more trouble than the price would make up for. And I'm not saying that is a low price for the condition -- seems high and maybe worth looking further.

Crease on the door and on the right pano window frame? Missing the glass panoramic windows up front is a real negative and very expensive to replace -- approaching $1000 apiece without labor. Another $1000+ for an air conditioner without labor. 'Bill of sale only' = no title. That makes it a piece of work for you to get a license to take this on the road -- talk to your local DMV to ask about the process.

This level of care probably means the axles are original. They're probably worn out and that's another $1000 bill.

What about that fridge? It suggests somebody pulled the old one. Did they even bother putting in a 2-way LP/120V RV fridge or just a small electric one? An RV fridge will be your most expensive single purchase to bring this up to camping/roadworthy condition.

$10K later you won't be finished and regret you ever saw it. It wouldn't be "cheap" if they were only asking $800. Please look around some more -- you won't regret it.
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Old 07-31-2013, 11:15 AM   #3
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Ugh. I'd keep looking if the trailer was half the asking price.
It is missing belly pan wrap, banana wrap, God only knows what the flooring is covering up. Then you can get into the electrical, plumbing, and LP problems. Then, when you are done with that, you can spend another $4,000 on appliances. Then you can replace the axle, and then, after all that, you can strip it and spend another $3,000 getting it painted with something besides a case of silver spray paint.
About the only thing it looks like it has going for it is it hasn't been wrecked or burned.
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Old 07-31-2013, 12:14 PM   #4
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I agree with CanoeStream and overlander63... this one would be expensive if given to you for free.

In addition to what's already been pointed out, it doesn't seem to have a galley anymore, and has no propane cylinders or regulator. The laminate floor is probably covering up problems, not adding value.

If you watch and wait, you can find trailers that need work but are functional for 2x that price and are actually worth it.
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Old 07-31-2013, 12:27 PM   #5
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I too wouldn't take this if it was offered for free. Looks like a total nightmare.
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Old 07-31-2013, 12:35 PM   #6
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I have a 1973 Argosy 20'

Getting it back to original could cost 20K or more. It might make sense, if you are handy, and want to use it as a stationary office, guesthouse, or studio. The paint job is terrible, but the inside is actually fairly nice.
There is no kitchen, but I never cook in mine anyway. No propane tanks, or regulator, so no hot water, no heat. An electric heater would be ok, in a campground, or backyard. The BIG questions are " What else is wrong with it, and how do you want to use it?"
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Old 07-31-2013, 02:50 PM   #7
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You all are brilliant. Glad I signed-up and am looking forward to my shopping journey.
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Old 07-31-2013, 04:05 PM   #8
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Yea, everything already said, and I always get nervous when it has new floors. What is underneath? My argosy had NO floor coverings, so I was able to inspect the wood very carefully. A body off resto is not my cup of tea. Is it yours??
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Old 07-31-2013, 10:18 PM   #9
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Keep looking! This trailer is an inside-out version of a "polished turd." the owner spruced up the interior and did very superficial things to make it look nice, but overall, this trailer is a wreck. One of the best features of the Argosy trailers was the panoramic/wraparound windows in the front, and it looks like they both have been removed and patched up with who knows what.

Do a search on the forums for "inspection checklist", and you should find lists of things to look for when buying an Airstream. Also, look at Vintageairstream.com, and you will find some very useful resources for estimating realistic prices, and evaluating condition of trailers.

Good luck!
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