Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 09-04-2012, 06:22 PM   #1
2 Rivet Member
 
1976 25' Tradewind
Grand Prairie , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 24
1973 Airstream Excella 500 Renovations

This is my first trailer and it needs a complete renovation. After gutting it, I beleve I should have it pressure tested for any leaks. Can someone recommend a shop in the Dallas/Fort Worth area that can do the test for me? Also, can someone recommend a good website and/or catalog to see the style of bathrooms available from Airstream?

Thanks
Txlogic
__________________

__________________
txlogic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-2012, 07:12 PM   #2
4 Rivet Member
 
Distantdrummer's Avatar
 
1975 31' Sovereign
Houston , Texas
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 494
Just my humble "o"

hmmn...
well if it really needs a 'COMPLETE' renovation, then a leak test might be a bit pre-mature.
Actually if you are handy you might even be able to do one yourself. There are instructions scattered somewhere on this forum or the web, that I have seen.
If you really need a complete renovation you will need to conserve all the money you can. That will require you to probably stay far away from RV service centers for all but the most specialized services and repairs.

And if you are not handy, I would definitely reconsider a "full monty" on a '73 Excella. If it is really a basket case you hopefully got it very reasonably priced (cheap).

Before you "sink" in now might be time to cut your losses. If you posted pix then many of the members here might advise as to what you are about to be up against.

My personal rule of thumb is not to buy any vintage 31 footer except '74 thru '80 inclusive. Main reasons are torque rubbers and grey tanks. However a few '73s had the tanks, not likely the improved torque rubbers.

Best of luck, but you might help yourself if you posted pix.

If you have big bux to burn then you have no problems. But if you have big bux to burn why start with a basket case?

BTW maybe it DOES'NT really need a COMPLETE renovation...aka full monty. I hope that's the case.

BTW-2 Where is the bathroom on this trailer?
either rear bath or center bath.
__________________

__________________
__________________________
____ d'drummer ____

...aahh..rumm..pu..tum..tummm...
Distantdrummer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-2012, 07:45 PM   #3
2 Rivet Member
 
1976 25' Tradewind
Grand Prairie , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 24
the bathroom or rather the plumbing for the bathroom is in the rear of the trailer. The previous owner had already begun renovation on the trailer and the bathroom has been gutted, Even the flooring has been removed. The carpet has been removed leaving raw decking through out the rest of the trailer and I. Thought it best to just gut the interior and re do to make sure everything is in great shape. If I can get the trailer refurbished, I am seriously considering becoming a full timer. Attached are a few pictures of the trailer. I have more if you need to see a specific portion.

Thank you
Txlogic
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	image-2484054495.jpg
Views:	368
Size:	439.4 KB
ID:	167477   Click image for larger version

Name:	image-647571901.jpg
Views:	1124
Size:	311.0 KB
ID:	167478  

Click image for larger version

Name:	image-273050092.jpg
Views:	1700
Size:	383.5 KB
ID:	167480  
__________________
txlogic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-2012, 08:27 PM   #4
Rivet Master
 
Minno's Avatar

 
1972 31' Sovereign
Lexington , Minnesota
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 3,323
Kinda looks like what ours looked like when we bought her. Parts were missing, though (like the kitchen - still have the sink). We didn't pressure test, but after we had it gutted and the inner skins off, insulation out, we leak tested with a hose on the outside and a magic marker on the inside to pinpoint leaks. Once we had those,we were able to seal up.
Take lots and lots of pics as you're taking things apart. Even if you rebuild with all new interior (like we are), the pictures will help you figure out how to do things (like building new walls, upper cabinets, etc.). If you have a gray tank you're lucky! We did not (a '72), but we added them.
Make no doubt, it is a JOB to completely renovate! We are finally at the point of being able to go camping now for the first time in the 4 1/2 years we've owned her. We can only work on her in summer (Minnesota, ya sure you betcha), so you will have an advantage over us. Full time jobs have kind of impeded the work too....
But, I have to say I think it is well worth it to us.

Good luck!

Kay
__________________
Minno is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-2012, 08:39 PM   #5
Rivet Master
 
Alumaholic's Avatar

 
1966 24' Tradewind
Albuquerque , New Mexico
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 1,751
Images: 33
Nice Airstream...

Looks like you found a good one.
DistantDrummer is correct, Leak testing will solve nothing, as they all leak in the same places.
Let's find out if it has a gray-water tanks before we do anything else. Some 1973 Excellas had them, I am told.
Repair or replace the roof vents, that's where most water comes in.
After that the plumbing vents, and then the seams.
DON'T USE SILICONE CAULK, WHATEVER YOU DO!
Those axles are shot.
Spend some time reading all the threads about axle replacement.
Plan on your first rally a year from now
That's realistic unless you have a full-time job, wife, kids.
If so, plan on 2014.
Good luck!
We are here for you.
__________________
Ken L
1966 Tradewind 24
2007Chevy Silverado 2500 HD Duramax/Allison
Four Corners Unit WBCCI #8654
Alumaholic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-2012, 08:45 PM   #6
2 Rivet Member
 
1976 25' Tradewind
Grand Prairie , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Minno
Kinda looks like what ours looked like when we bought her. Parts were missing, though (like the kitchen - still have the sink). We didn't pressure test, but after we had it gutted and the inner skins off, insulation out, we leak tested with a hose on the outside and a magic marker on the inside to pinpoint leaks. Once we had those,we were able to seal up.
Take lots and lots of pics as you're taking things apart. Even if you rebuild with all new interior (like we are), the pictures will help you figure out how to do things (like building new walls, upper cabinets, etc.). If you have a gray tank you're lucky! We did not (a '72), but we added them.
Make no doubt, it is a JOB to completely renovate! We are finally at the point of being able to go camping now for the first time in the 4 1/2 years we've owned her. We can only work on her in summer (Minnesota, ya sure you betcha), so you will have an advantage over us. Full time jobs have kind of impeded the work too....
But, I have to say I think it is well worth it to us.

Good luck!

Kay
Thanks for the words of encouragement, I'm really excited about starting this journey.

Txlogic
__________________
txlogic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-2012, 08:50 PM   #7
2 Rivet Member
 
1976 25' Tradewind
Grand Prairie , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alumaholic
Looks like you found a good one.
DistantDrummer is correct, Leak testing will solve nothing, as they all leak in the same places.
Let's find out if it has a gray-water tanks before we do anything else. Some 1973 Excellas had them, I am told.
Repair or replace the roof vents, that's where most water comes in.
After that the plumbing vents, and then the seams.
DON'T USE SILICONE CAULK, WHATEVER YOU DO!
Those axles are shot.
Spend some time reading all the threads about axle replacement.
Plan on your first rally a year from now
That's realistic unless you have a full-time job, wife, kids.
If so, plan on 2014.
Good luck!
We are here for you.
Thanks for the advice. I'll check on the grey water tanks and the axle. First rally will probably be in a couple of years. I want to take my time and do this right, so I can enjoy for many more years.

Txlogic
__________________
txlogic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-06-2012, 06:10 PM   #8
2 Rivet Member
 
1976 25' Tradewind
Grand Prairie , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 24
I pulled out the owners manual and I lucked out evidently. Per the owners manual, there is a 45 gallon fresh water tank. A 20 gallon waste-holding tank and a 10 gallon auxiliary waste-tank for sink and shower waste.
__________________
txlogic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-06-2012, 09:38 PM   #9
Rivet Master
 
Minno's Avatar

 
1972 31' Sovereign
Lexington , Minnesota
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 3,323
I hate to burst your bubble, but a 10 gal tank is about enough to brush your teeth and do dishes a couple of times, maybe. You may find you want to beef that one up... or get a Blue Boy tank to use for grey water. They come in various sizes and can be towed to the dump station as needed. Some people never camp without full hookups and some never camp with hookups. Some of your decisions on how you renovate or add to your trailer will depend on how you like to camp. We do both, but tend to "dry camp" more often than get hookups. I believe that lots of rallys are dry camp but I'm new to that part of the story so I may be wrong.

Kay
__________________
Minno is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2012, 09:07 AM   #10
Rivet Master
 
Alumaholic's Avatar

 
1966 24' Tradewind
Albuquerque , New Mexico
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 1,751
Images: 33
Glad You Have a Gray Water Tank!

Quote:
Originally Posted by txlogic View Post
I pulled out the owners manual and I lucked out evidently. Per the owners manual, there is a 45 gallon fresh water tank. A 20 gallon waste-holding tank and a 10 gallon auxiliary waste-tank for sink and shower waste.
Don't be discouraged by the fact it is only 10 gal. 10 gal is 100 times better than 0 gallons!
It gets you down the road from camp to camp, and you can always use a "blue-belly" for extra capacity when you boondock. We managed just fine with the 10 gal gray-water holding tank in our '76 Airstreams (Old Number 1, and Old Number 3 in the Registry).
__________________
Ken L
1966 Tradewind 24
2007Chevy Silverado 2500 HD Duramax/Allison
Four Corners Unit WBCCI #8654
Alumaholic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2012, 11:08 AM   #11
2 Rivet Member
 
1976 25' Tradewind
Grand Prairie , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 24
How hard would it be to upgrade to a larger tank?
__________________
txlogic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2012, 03:52 PM   #12
Rivet Master
 
Alumaholic's Avatar

 
1966 24' Tradewind
Albuquerque , New Mexico
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 1,751
Images: 33
Very hard. Only feasible with frame-off, restoration, though some may argue.
Why upgrade?
If you had found any vintage through 1979, it would have a 10 gal auxiliary tank.
You really lucked out to find a 1973 with the aux tanks as it is.
__________________
Ken L
1966 Tradewind 24
2007Chevy Silverado 2500 HD Duramax/Allison
Four Corners Unit WBCCI #8654
Alumaholic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2012, 07:08 PM   #13
Rivet Master
 
Wabbiteer's Avatar
 
1973 27' Overlander
1972 29' Ambassador
St. Paul , Minnesota
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,912
Images: 2
Blog Entries: 2
Some have cheated the plumbing to cure similar problems:

A 4" nominal I.D. PVC pipe twenty feet long will hold over twelve gallons of water. If you adapt your drain line up to a 4-inch pipe size then zig-zag or build a comb shape with twenty linear feet of that 4" pipe before (or after?) the 10 gallon holding tank you will have doubled your storage. The design has to be such that there is no/low trapped air in the pipe to reduce storage volume, and all parts have to drain dry..
__________________

Wabbiteer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2012, 09:41 PM   #14
3 Rivet Member
 
1973 25' Tradewind
Augusta , Georgia
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 123
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wabbiteer
Some have cheated the plumbing to cure similar problems:

A 4" nominal I.D. PVC pipe twenty feet long will hold over twelve gallons of water. If you adapt your drain line up to a 4-inch pipe size then zig-zag or build a comb shape with twenty linear feet of that 4" pipe before (or after?) the 10 gallon holding tank you will have doubled your storage. The design has to be such that there is no/low trapped air in the pipe to reduce storage volume, and all parts have to drain dry..
Wabbiteer I like this concept as part of a holding tank system. I added/ installed a grey water tank in a 1973 25' Land Yacht that I picked up of EBay. Added about 35 gallons of grey water storage.

Looks like floor of OP rig is removed in bathroom so installing either 4" pipe rat maze or extra tank could be achieved.

Dennis
__________________

__________________
DGJackson is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:57 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.