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Old 05-14-2010, 11:16 AM   #183
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1979 Argosy Minuet 7.3 Metre
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Argosy Minuet 7.3

Hi!

I am on Vancouver Island in BC, Canada, and I have an Argosy 7.3 Metre I towed all the way here from N.Carolina. She's in the middle of a piece by piece restoration: she leaked on us, so we are re-sealing everything and then going to redo the insulation, electrical and plumbing. Right now she looks a little rough on the inside (no flooring will do that to you!) but she's wonderful, small but roomy, and tows like a dream. Plus, she's the cutest travel trailer at the beach, no doubt.
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Old 05-14-2010, 11:20 AM   #184
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1979 Argosy Minuet 7.3 Metre
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Quote:
Originally Posted by COArgosy78 View Post
Anyway, would love to have the head count of Minuet owners on an ongoing basis.
Does anyone else have a 7.3? Mine definitely does not have aluminum floors, but has many of the other characteristics of the Minuets. Tows awesome, although the layout is not the best for us, it would be great from someone with a pair of kids (has the two twins in the rear next to the rear bath).
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Old 05-14-2010, 11:56 AM   #185
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1977 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre
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I just purchased my first trailer, a 77 Argosy 6.0 Minuet, I love it! It's cute as a button. My husband and I live in NW Indiana. My mom (an airstream owner) found the gem on CL in Minnesota so she and I took a two day trip to get her. We have begun fixing her up to get ready for camping season, our first trip is only a couple weeks away. I have yet to post pictures, but they will come!
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Old 05-14-2010, 10:56 PM   #186
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Let me be the one to officially welcome you, Jill, to the Airstream Forums! You will learn all about your Minuet here when I'm not home to help you!
xoxo
Mom!
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Old 05-15-2010, 01:23 AM   #187
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1964 26' Overlander
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Calling on all Argosy Minuet Owners

Greetings katrix!

Welcome to the Forums and the world of Vintage Argosy ownership!

Quote:
Originally Posted by katrix View Post
Does anyone else have a 7.3? Mine definitely does not have aluminum floors, but has many of the other characteristics of the Minuets. Tows awesome, although the layout is not the best for us, it would be great from someone with a pair of kids (has the two twins in the rear next to the rear bath).
There are a few clues to aid in identification of a Minuet 7.3. The first and biggest difference is the width - - at 7' wide, it is 8" narrower than the standard coach. Beyond the width some other indicators would include:
  • The side windows are most likely acrylic rather than glass. The 7.3 Metre Minuets are relatively unusual, and not having seen one I am not absolutely certain that the 7.3 shared the acrylic side windows with its smaller siblings.
  • Unless modified by a previous owner, Minuets did not have the drop-down entry steps of the regular Argosys. The original owner would have been provided with an aluminum portable step-stool to use in entering/exiting the coach.
  • If the drain for the shower doesn't connect to the gray tank, the coach is nearly certain to be a Minuet,
  • There should be a small Minuet emblem in the beltline moulding -- the photos that I have aren't clear enough to be absolutely certain about the beltline nameplate.
Good luck with your coach!

Kevin
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Old 05-16-2010, 02:17 AM   #188
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1979 Argosy Minuet 7.3 Metre
Victoria , British Columbia
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most definitely a minuet 7.3

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Originally Posted by overlander64 View Post
Greetings katrix!

Welcome to the Forums and the world of Vintage Argosy ownership!



There are a few clues to aid in identification of a Minuet 7.3. The first and biggest difference is the width - - at 7' wide, it is 8" narrower than the standard coach. Beyond the width some other indicators would include:
  • The side windows are most likely acrylic rather than glass. The 7.3 Metre Minuets are relatively unusual, and not having seen one I am not absolutely certain that the 7.3 shared the acrylic side windows with its smaller siblings.
  • Unless modified by a previous owner, Minuets did not have the drop-down entry steps of the regular Argosys. The original owner would have been provided with an aluminum portable step-stool to use in entering/exiting the coach.
  • If the drain for the shower doesn't connect to the gray tank, the coach is nearly certain to be a Minuet,
  • There should be a small Minuet emblem in the beltline moulding -- the photos that I have aren't clear enough to be absolutely certain about the beltline nameplate.
Good luck with your coach!

Kevin
Kevin, I must say I love the way you lay out your posts. So easy to follow!

My Argosy is most definitely a Minuet (yes, she has the little nameplate riveted onto the body) and a 7.3. She is a dream. You might remember her from the forums; I found her on the classifieds last year. There are a couple of postings about the trailer on this thread from Dreamstreamer.

I'm pretty sure the windows are acrylic (plexi?) and they are very crazed. I kind of like the look and considering the rest of the work the trailer needs they are not exactly high on the priority list. The shower drains to the gray water- I know this from having the whole mess overfill and back up into the shower. Not a pleasant experience but better than the black I suppose. Perhaps this was a feature of the 7.3 or a matter of the late production year (1979). There are no drop down steps and yes we have the little step ladder that must have come with the coach originally.

Mostly I know she is a Minuet 7.3 because I have the original letter from the manufacturer to the first owner, as well as a file folder full of material including the owners manual and some sales material. And I imported the trailer to Canada, and so the paperwork was all in line, with the VIN listing the coach as being 24 ft.

Weren't there photos of another 7.3 on the Forums? I think I have heard of a total of 4 including my own. She is a rare gem indeed. Spacious and light. We love her but she needs a lot of work (some frame rust in the rear, new insulation due to leaking, new seals on everything coming from the outside, sunglasses, countertops, paint scraping, new floor...) but we have been plugging away on these projects, taking it one thing at a time.

We had such a fun time living in the trailer on the beach in the summer here on Vancouver Island, I just hold those memories close as we pull the belly pans and drill out pop rivets.

Kate
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Old 05-16-2010, 05:38 AM   #189
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1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre
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Calling on all Argosy Minuet Owners

Greetings Kate!

Quote:
Originally Posted by katrix View Post
Kevin, I must say I love the way you lay out your posts. So easy to follow!
Thank you for the compliment! I taught computer programming for many years so my writing is often in something of "flowchart style".

Quote:
Originally Posted by katrix View Post
My Argosy is most definitely a Minuet (yes, she has the little nameplate riveted onto the body) and a 7.3. She is a dream. You might remember her from the forums; I found her on the classifieds last year. There are a couple of postings about the trailer on this thread from Dreamstreamer.
Yes, I do recognize the coach - - the trailer is quite nice and if I remember correctly it has minimal modifications from stock.

Quote:
Originally Posted by katrix View Post
I'm pretty sure the windows are acrylic (plexi?) and they are very crazed. I kind of like the look and considering the rest of the work the trailer needs they are not exactly high on the priority list. The shower drains to the gray water- I know this from having the whole mess overfill and back up into the shower. Not a pleasant experience but better than the black I suppose. Perhaps this was a feature of the 7.3 or a matter of the late production year (1979). There are no drop down steps and yes we have the little step ladder that must have come with the coach originally.
There is much less known about the Minuet 7.3 than either the 6.7 or the 6.0. I haven't been able to find anything pertaining to the dates of introduction for the Minuets. It is known that the Minuet series began in 1977 and ended with the rest of first generation Argosy production. I suspect that the Minuet 7.3 may have been the last of the three Minuets to be introduced with my guess being that it was introduced mid-to-late 1978. The 1979 sales literature was the first of the full-line brochures to include specifications for all three Minuets. My 1978 sales brochure only mentions the 6.0, but there are a number of Minuet 6.7 coaches accounted for with a VIN identifying them as 1978 models.

You are fortunate to have a coach with much of its original documentation. I was fortunate to purchase my Minuet from its original owner so most if not all of the original literature and documentation was with the coach. From visiting with Minuet owners, it seems like about one in three has been provided with the original entrance step stool. When the time rolls around, you might be surprised how well the acrylic in the side windows will come back with the application of a little aircraft maintenance products - - Aircraft Spruce offers a number of acrylic polishing kits and supplies - - and my experiment with one of their kits made my sidewindows brighten up considerably.

From what I have been able to learn from other Minuet 7.3 owners, the below-floor gray water tank must have been an improvement included with the 7.3 coaches. As more is documented about the 7.3 coaches, I suspect that there will be other features that set the 7.3 coaches apart from the 6.0 and 6.7 coaches.

Quote:
Originally Posted by katrix View Post
Weren't there photos of another 7.3 on the Forums? I think I have heard of a total of 4 including my own. She is a rare gem indeed. Spacious and light. We love her but she needs a lot of work (some frame rust in the rear, new insulation due to leaking, new seals on everything coming from the outside, sunglasses, countertops, paint scraping, new floor...) but we have been plugging away on these projects, taking it one thing at a time.
I am aware of the four documented 7.3s that you mention plus three "probable" Minuet 7.3s. There was a time when I wondered if the 7.3 had even been produced - - then, I ran across the owner of a well-documented 1979 7.3 Minuet at a rally and we compared notes about what the factory literature said about the coach - - and how the coach was actually delivered.

Good luck with your coach! I am certain that you will get many years of enjoyment from your gem.

Kevin
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Old 05-18-2010, 07:56 AM   #190
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I'm wondering where this 7.3 Metre wound up.

What I find curious is that despite the narrower width and acrylic windows, the 24' Minuet only weighs 200-300 lbs less than a contemporary 25' Tradewind.

Tom
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Old 05-18-2010, 11:33 AM   #191
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Calling on all Argosy Minuet Owners

Greetings Tom!

Quote:
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I'm wondering where this 7.3 Metre wound up.

What I find curious is that despite the narrower width and acrylic windows, the 24' Minuet only weighs 200-300 lbs less than a contemporary 25' Tradewind.

Tom
I can fill in what I learned in talking with the owner of the well documented 7.3 Minuet:
  • The floor material is that same as that used in the Tradewind - - plywood. So far, every Minuet 7.3 that has been documented has had plywood flooring.
  • The steel used in the frame appears to be a significantly heavier gauge than what was utilized in the Minuet 6.0 and 6.7 coaches - - my guess would be the same gauge that was utilized in the Tradewind frames. The depth of the frame members must be considerably more than the other Minuets to accommodate the below-floor gray water tank.
  • This is one question that I didn't ask the owner of the Minuet 7.3 - - but is a suspicion that I have - - given the presumtion that the Minuet 7.3 was a late introduction it may have been past the point where the decision had been made to terminate Argosy production - - it this were the case, I suspect that the cabinetry is laminate rather than the vinyl-clad aluminum of the Minuet 6.0 and 6.7 - - given the comparatively short model run for the 7.3 it may have made more sense from the manufacturing standpoint to utilize laminate cabinets rather than build the jigs necessary to make the vinyl-clad aluminum cabinets like those in the two smaller Minuets.
If my suspcions are correct, the main weight savings on the Minuet 7.3 would be in the weight of the aluminum panels to make up the additional 8-inches of width in the Tradewind.

Kevin
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Old 05-18-2010, 12:04 PM   #192
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Hi Kevin!

Thanks for the reply. Good to know the frame was more substantial than the one in our Minuets - given the issues I had with mine, that's a good change.

I wonder about the cabinetry given that the brochure mentioned that all Minuets had the vinyl-clad aluminium cabinetry. Maybe one of the 7.3 owners can chime in.

If I ever restore another Argosy, I'd like a late-model 24' with a dinette and twins - I really like that big window next to the door and, as time goes by, the dedicated beds...

Tom
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Old 05-31-2010, 04:35 PM   #193
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I wonder about the cabinetry given that the brochure mentioned that all Minuets had the vinyl-clad aluminium cabinetry. Maybe one of the 7.3 owners can chime in.
My minuet 7.3 has vinyl clad aluminum cabinetry. I am restoring one currently, where the original fridge was pulled out and a terrible, terrible substitute was put in. We are going to camouflage the fridge by putting an aluminum/vinyl clad cabinet around it.
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Old 05-31-2010, 06:11 PM   #194
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I'd love to see how that turns out - curious how well you can match the vinyl.

Tom
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Old 06-01-2010, 04:49 PM   #195
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I may be wrong, but the dry weight of the 7.3 Minuet is quite a bit less than the dry weight of the contemporary 25 foot Trade Wind. It sounds like you are comparing dry weight of the Trade Wind to GVWR of the Minuet. I owned a 1979 6 meter Minuet and it also had a gray water tank under the floor. About 15 gallons, the shower emptied into it and would fill it rather quickly. 1978 6 meter has the shower drain directly to the outlet. In usage, there isn't much difference.
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Old 06-01-2010, 05:28 PM   #196
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I was using the numbers listed in the old brochures posted on Airstream's site:

1979 Minuet 7.3 = 3820 lbs
1979 Tradewind = 3975 lbs

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