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Old 05-12-2011, 10:19 PM   #1
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Considering buying a 1977 Six Meter

I'm considering buying a 1977 Six Meter. Is there price vs. condition on these somewhere? Can I buy parts for these like it's silver sisters? Anything I should look out for?

Thanks as usual!!!
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Old 05-13-2011, 01:25 AM   #2
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Considering buying a 1977 Six Meter

Greetings Jimbcole!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimbcole View Post
I'm considering buying a 1977 Six Meter. Is there price vs. condition on these somewhere? Can I buy parts for these like it's silver sisters? Anything I should look out for?

Thanks as usual!!!
The Argosy Minuet series was produced from 1977 through 1979. The coaches were 7 feet wide rather than the typical 7 feet 8 inches wide. Many of the 6.0 Metre Minuets came equipped with aluminum composite floors rather than the plywood so floor rot isn't typically an issue. The composite floors may develop depressions corresponding to heavy traffic areas, but they tend to be very durable.

Parts availability for the Argosy Minuets is on a par with other Airstreams of similar age. The one thing to be aware of with the Minuets is that a factory three piece rock guard won't fit the front Panoramic Windows unless the center section is narrowed to correspond to the narrower body of the Minuet. Also, keep in mind that the interior cabinetry is made of vinyl-clad aluminum rather than laminates or veneers.

Minuets have been developing somewhat of a following, and tend to command a slight premium over other Argosy coaches of similar length. The same typical inspection parameters apply to the Minuet that apply to other Airstream products -- the presence of an aluminum composite floor can be quite a bonus in terms of simplification of restoration.

Good luck with your investigation!

Kevin
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Old 05-15-2011, 10:55 AM   #3
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Minuets in really good condition can go as high as $8500 - $9000. If one needs work, the price gets lower but not likely below $2500 - $3000 unless you are lucky enough to find someone who either needs to sell or who doesn't know what he has.

Look in the area beneath the stove, the furnace area, for evidence of rust on the appliances. Check the tracks for the tambour doors and the condition of those doors. Expect the axle will need a replacement. No matter how good the individual Minuet looks, expect it will need repair on something. I have found the aluminum floors to be great, especially when covered with a Pergo like flooring.

In defense of the Minuet, if you wind up buying one and spending some time and money putting it into shape, you will wind up with a very strong, comfortable, lightweight trailer that will serve you for years. In addition, you will have less money in it than you would spend for a new lightweight trailer that is likely not as well built.
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Old 05-15-2011, 11:16 PM   #4
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I traveled 300+ miles today to look at the minuet. There was damage to left front corner. Paint was bad, the rear was really sagging. It will need an axle The belly pan was loose and had some frame rust. The interior front cap was cracked. Could not test propane systems, no tanks. I made a reasonable offer, but it was refused. I left it where I found it. Maybe he'll call me back when it doesn't sell. I'd really like to have it, but I would have too much in it at his asking price. Thanks for the information. I'm learning a lot and hope to have a nice one soon.
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Old 05-16-2011, 08:18 AM   #5
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Interior cracks on the front/rear caps are cosmetic but the other things you mention do cause some worry. The sagging rear would warrant a close inspection of that frame rust as well as the mounts for the body off the frame. The axle is practically a given. What you describe indicates you would have to buy that Minuet VERY reasonably after a very close, thorough inspection! It also depends on how much you can or will do yourself.
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Old 05-16-2011, 08:42 AM   #6
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As much as I like our Minuet, I think you might have done the right thing by passing this one up, unless you get it for a very good price. The symptoms sound an awful lot like the problem I had with my frame - the frame members use a stupid end gusset design that doesn't allow much weld area. That weld area broke loose, leaving the frame members free to float around the frame. It was found by noticing that the belly pan was drooping.

Argonaut20's got it right. Sometimes I get a little bummed by how much I have invested in my Minuet. But the thing is built far better than most new trailers (definitely better than my T@B was, and that was a well-built trailer) and it is light, super easy to tow, and very comfortable.

For future reference - another thing to look at - check the condition of the side windows. They are aryclic, not glass, and can get cloudy. Plastic polish can bring them back somewhat. They're the one part on my trailer that I worry about getting a replacement if need be.

Also as mentioned above, you also want a Minuet with all of its interior cabinetry. The lightweight-ness was achieved by vinyl-covered aluminium furniture. It's surprisingly durable but would be a hassle to duplicate.

Tom
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Old 05-16-2011, 03:20 PM   #7
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I did notice some fogging of the side glasses. I also noticed, since y'all mentioned the frame outriggers, that the floor in the very back just felt bouncy. It was the aluminum floor, so I brushed it off.

The interior was nice, will original cabinets, the upholstery had been redone but all was original.

If he calls back and takes my reasonable offer, I'd get it, but if anyone with any AS knowledge won't offer him more than I did.

But as I was out today, I found a 1970 GlobeTrotter and left my phone number for the owner to call me. Whoo hoo!
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Old 05-16-2011, 05:09 PM   #8
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Oooh. A 1970 Globetrotter is a nice one. Real wood inside. It was a Globetrotter that helped us decide that a 20-21 footer was the right size for us. Good luck on that one - let us know how it works out.

A note - that GT won't have a gray tank. The Minuet has one, but it doesn't capture shower water (gray tanks typically do.)

Tom
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Old 05-16-2011, 08:43 PM   #9
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The Globetrotter is a great unit. It is heavier than a Minuet and doesn't have the gray water tank, but it is a comfortable trailer. It takes a more powerful truck to tow than does a Minuet. Get a blueboy for the dishwater and you are good to go. Axles are still a concern, however.
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