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Old 12-05-2009, 06:51 AM   #1
1 Rivet Member
1976 Argosy 24
Tucson , Arizona
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 10
Lightbulb Vintage Argosy Restoration

When I was a boy, my grandparents bought a new 22 foot '76 Argosy. Some of my fondest memories are of camping trips to the Mojave Desert, visiting the Hoover Dam, and ferrying around the San Juan Islands in Washington State with my grandparents.
The Argosy's last trip for my grandparents was to my college graduation in 1983. She sat under an Avocado tree in Southern California until a few years ago when my grandfather gave her to me just before he passed away.
With much help from the forums, I've cleaned her up and gotten everything working except the old inverter which I plan to replace with something new. For nostalgia reasons, I would like to keep the Argosy exactly like she rolled out of the Airstream factory (as much as possible.) Call me old-fashioned, but that orange '70's look works for me.
In searching the forums, I see that many people remodel their coaches to suit their decorating style, which is great. But my coach holds so many memories that I'd like to keep her original - and besides that, she is in very good condition. As far as I know, I have the only '76 with the T.V. antenna still up top. Are there others out there who feel as I do about restoring their Argosies to original condition?
If so, perhaps we can have a thread to help each other find those original wood grain vinyl prints, or orange upholstery, or maybe someone knows how get those sliding doors under the kitchen sink to roll up smoothly.

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Old 12-05-2009, 08:14 AM   #2
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1967 26' Overlander
1968 30' Sovereign
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Mosheim , Tennessee
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Welcome to the FORUMS Billyhip. There are many here on the FORUMS that like to have their trailers, just as they were originally. You can count me in that category. Sometimes, with mechanical items, and chassis, newer is better. I think that upgrading the convertor is a very good idea.

Kevin with Baity the Lab/Pointer
//------AIR # 7303------\\
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visit my restoration blog at:
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Old 12-05-2009, 08:19 AM   #3
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1976 Argosy 24
Joplin , Missouri
Join Date: Mar 2008
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We still have the antenna, probably works but we don't have a new digital TV for the trailer so we may never know. It doesn't leak around it so we aren't going to mess with it (if it aint broke.......). Ours has had uphostery, drapes, etc replaced before we got it but everything else is pretty much original. We have the lime green countertop. And there is a tiny bit of upholstery still under the bed gaucho.....lime green and orange. We are not going to upgrade or replace anything since it is all in good shape as of now. As far as those tambour doors under the sink, they had to be replaced as they got broken before we got her, and it now has cupboard doors that open, and I like that setup much better. We used the original tambour in the doors so everything matches.
Jim and Sandy

"To know is nothing at all. To imagine, is everything." --Albert Einstein
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Old 12-05-2009, 08:21 AM   #4
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1966 17' Caravel
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Las Cruces , New Mexico
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The problem with the tambour (sp?) doors under the sink seems to be partially how you open and close them and partially with how they ride in the tracks. If I grab the door about 4 - 5 inches from the top and lift slightly as I open/close it, it seems to work pretty well. If I just drag the door without the lift, it digs in and doesn't want to close (or open) easily. The problem with the tracks stems from the door not being perpendicular to the track. The door cocks down at the bottom which makes it bind. I put a pin through the bottom of one door so that the pin rode on top of the track. It made the door work much better. Lubing the track after a thorough cleaning also helps. A silicone lube seems to work well.
1966 Airstream Caravel
2006 Toyota Tacoma
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Old 12-07-2009, 04:42 PM   #5
1 Rivet Member
1976 Argosy 24
Tucson , Arizona
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 10
Silverhobby - being an electronics engineer, I don't like the inverter at all. It overcharges the battery (found out the hard way.) I could rebuild it, but the technology in battery charging is so much better now, and batteries are so expensive. I'm happy to hear that there are others who try to keep their argosies original.

Isadora - that's a good idea, using the original doors to surface your new doors. And it's nice to know that I don't have the only TV antenna still in existence. If I could find the two pin plug, I'd try the TV antenna. There isn't much that can go wrong with an antenna except bad electrical connections.
I'm in the process of replacing the curtains - washing the originals was the only hope but turned into their demise. The fabric on the cushions is original - just a bit faded but fine. I washed it too, but it is fine. It's orange and yellow. My countertops are orange and so is the carpet.

Argonaut20 - lifting the doors helps quite a bit - thanks for the tip. They are still stiff, even after cleaning the slots and a lot of silicone spray, but I can open and close them now. I tried to un-rivet some trim to get to them, but the farther I got, the farther I needed to go, so I retreated. I'll try your pin idea.

Does anyone know where to get matching wood grain paper for the slots in the aluminum trim? Some of mine cracked and fell out. I've searched online for hours but no luck.
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original, retro, vintage

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