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Old 10-05-2010, 08:04 AM   #15
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A slow progress update. I started to remove the interior paint with removall and the powerwasher. It is working OK but with the drought for the past few weeks I was nervous about running the well dry. We finally got some good rains so I can finish up the job this week. I will post photos of the progress later this week.
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Old 10-13-2010, 11:01 AM   #16
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Removing Inner skin

Well had a little progress the last few days. I have been figuring out how to remove the inner skin. Boy that is a dirty and dusty job. Amazingly enough there are not too many signs of old mice. I am very curious about the front C channel it is a lot different than I was expecting to find. Especially in the front. As you can see in the photo the C channel is only 6 pieces and they were screwed down into the wood floor with flat handed screws. The only elevator bolts that I see is one in the very front under the window and 1 on either side installed upside down. Even the exterior front banana wrap trim was screwed on. It appears to be original flooring since the original Marmoleoum under the C channel.

QUESTION: Would I want to repeat this design or add a solid C channel with the cuts for the curve like I have seen others doing? Should I add more elevator bolts or is the 3 enough in the front section? It looks like there is an elevator bolt about every 2-3 feet else where.
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Old 10-19-2010, 03:49 PM   #17
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The inner skin has been removed and only the end caps remain. I have been busy getting the barn ready with lighting and electric, for the shell removal. I am thinking of buying a couple pulleys and just hoist it up on the barn rafters. I need to get the horses and everything ready. With any luck I will have the shell off next week. (depending if I get away for deer season. Week #2 of the season and I have not even stepped foot into the wood.)
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Old 12-11-2010, 04:47 PM   #18
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My word where did November go? The cold has moved in and it has been in the 20's and 30's the past 2 weeks. I have drilled out all the rivets on the outside and she is ready for the shell off. My plan is to use the barn rafters to lift the shell straight up. I took the front and rear vent off and plan to use a chain block and tackle to hoist it up. I was going to use some 3ft long 2x4’s in the vent holes and lift from there. I don’t know if the shell will handle it or not. I am not sure if I need to add supports to the inside near the floor or just hoisting will be OK. I am thinking about getting some 2x4's to add a little stiffness at the floor. I hope to lift it on Monday so we will see how it goes.
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Old 12-11-2010, 08:39 PM   #19
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Nick,
I would add some 2x4 braces at the base. I braced ours then slide10' 4x4 s under the shell and lifted from those. When it was high (for the wheels to clear) enough, I could just roll the frame out from underneath the shell.
You think it's cold now, just wait till you see whats coming your way next week!
Tim
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Old 12-11-2010, 10:49 PM   #20
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Nick, It takes a long time to drill out all the rivets around the bottom, that's where November went! 20" of snow here today the high temps will be below 0 by Monday and then it will probably get bad :-)
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Old 12-12-2010, 07:51 AM   #21
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Nick, You do not need to go over board with the cross bracing. 3- 6" rips of 3/4" plywood screwed to the ribs is more than enough. I put one forward of the door. one above the wheel wells, and one at the rear. Most home restorers go way over the top with the cross bracing. The lifting you describe is more than enough, the entire shell will only be about 500 pounds with all the windows in. If you have the height, just lift it and leave it hanging.

I think the biggest shock will be the bang the frame will make when the last rivet gets sheared. The entire frame will go from straight to a down ward curve at the same time. The shell once lifted will feel like a feather on a string.

To quote a David Winick: "It's just a trailer" (have no fear....)
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Old 01-21-2011, 08:02 PM   #22
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Shell off now what?

Well my body is sore, but I had some great progress....well if you can call tearing down progress. After much fear I was able to take the shell off today. It went very smoothly only 2 screws in the very front gave me a hard time. I pulled the frame out, took the belly pan off in good enough shape to use and a template later. I then scribed the front and back curves of the floor and took off the flooring. Then I was left with a very rusty frame. Some areas still have the original frame paint on but other areas there is bad flaking.

How bad is to bad? What do I do in those areas?

I guess I need to find a welder now and start getting the rust off to bare metal. I am thing a wire brush on a grinder opposed to actually grinding the metal. Does this sound right?

I advise on where to go from here is always welcome. I want to change the axles to torflex and I think I may make it a dual axle while I am at it since it was an option back then from the factory.

Here are some photos.
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Old 01-21-2011, 08:48 PM   #23
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Sweet!!!

Nick, way to go. I'll be in the same boat in June. Just bought a '54 Cruiser which I won't be picking up until then. I'll be doing exactly as you, so I'll be following this thread closely. You can check out my trailer by going to the link below my name and going to the Airstream page. I assume you'll be adding holding tanks etc? I need to see how that plumbing is planned out. Nice work...keep it up!!
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Old 01-22-2011, 07:40 PM   #24
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Hi Nick

Looks like your making some nice progress. Im still trying to get my outside together before I can do a shell off.

Ill be watching what your doing, what are your plans?
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Old 01-22-2011, 07:54 PM   #25
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Plans???Was I suppose to plan something?....I have more dreams than plans.

I dream to make it a dual axle, that is close to original with a few added things. I hope to have a new fridge with the Marvel as a face, speakers, LED's inside and out, a black tank, a grey tank about 30 gallons. I dream of having a AC unit inside, either a portable model or a window model setup on floor vent out the side and a tankless water heater.

Right now I dream I can find someone to do the welding for me and get the axles on. hopefully I can get someone lined up this week.
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:27 PM   #26
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Hi Nick,
Nice job!
I've done an assortment of "leaf spring to Torsion conversions" & its not really too difficult, especially at the stage you're at.
I have drawings of the necessary mounting plates if you're interested, free of charge.
As the Cruisers of this era had 3" deep frame members, I would suggest adding a 1" X 1" square tube or angle to the bottom of the complete chassis (assuming you're not replacing the chassis) which in addition to adding strength to the chassis itself, it'll also allows you to use "off the shelf" grey tanks from Vintage Trailer Supply. These tanks have a 15 gallon capacity & will fit between the existing crossmembers & end up flush with the bellypan.
If you want 30 gallons just link two together. Steve @ VTS can spin weld fittings in to suit what ever configuration you require. I have done this a number of times as I also have "spin welding" capability. Theoretically you could add several tanks together for huge grey capacity, however your chassis would need to be upgraded to suit.
I have found that saving the original bellypan is a waste of time as they were originally made from two full length pieces of aluminum & I fabricate them out of both 4 X 8 & 5 X 10 sheets which allows access to bellypan cavities in future if necessary.
The other thing I would recommend is to flip the chassis over after installing the sub floor as it is much easier to paint, install insulation, tanks, brake wiring, plumbing, bellypan & axles when you're not lying on your back. I have a "rotisserie" for this & it makes these jobs far easier & the quality is superior.
Good luck with your project,
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Old 01-23-2011, 06:22 AM   #27
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Quote:
I guess I need to find a welder now and start getting the rust off to bare metal. I am thing a wire brush on a grinder opposed to actually grinding the metal. Does this sound right?
POR15 recommends to just paint over the rust and not to remove. Buy yourself a basic welder and just start welding.

POR-15-POR-15 Inc.

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Old 01-23-2011, 07:13 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nick6930
Plans???Was I suppose to plan something?....I have more dreams than plans.

I dream to make it a dual axle, that is close to original with a few added things. I hope to have a new fridge with the Marvel as a face, speakers, LED's inside and out, a black tank, a grey tank about 30 gallons. I dream of having a AC unit inside, either a portable model or a window model setup on floor vent out the side and a tankless water heater.

Right now I dream I can find someone to do the welding for me and get the axles on. hopefully I can get someone lined up this week.
I hope to be where you're at in the next few months!! This is great :-)
I'm watching!
Rae

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