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Old 07-27-2008, 05:32 AM   #301
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Nice to see that nobody wrote in (yet!) thinking I am nuts, though I get a fair amount of that around here anyway

Rich, wish I had asked to see inside of your BH at the JAM, but I knew you were very busy with the event and hoped that any free time you had (right!) would be spent catching up with friends or getting some rest. BTW, M and I learned a lot at your presentations, and thank you for all that you and the team did to make the JAM happen. Will be there early next year to help!

The only way DH is willing to let me do this "swap" is if I can find a way for it not to cost him any more cash. Have it worked out with the bank, working on the next part. MIGHT be possible, but having to be patient.

Would really love a 34' front bedroom! For right now, one with a center second bedroom that could later be an office would be way cool! Or an enclosed loft like set-up, so popular in college dorms, so his computer and school stuff could be other than at the dinette and he could still have his own bed - this would be perfect! Although, bedrooms at opposite ends would be a bit more private for all parties . But I do love the open and inviting living space that the FB floorplan affords us.

There is so much more that I know now than just a few months ago, that I am tempted to regret the impulsive purchase of our AS. BUT, long dormant dreams have been reignited thanks to the flash of aluminum in our lives, we are out camping, exploring, spending lots of time together, really using the AS! We especially enjoy have a quite, private place to slip away to often . We could so easily have been stuck in analysis parallisis, then the diesel prices would have risen, we would have remembered the central AC that we had hoped to have installed in our house this summer, kiddo's health, there would have been lots of "reasons" to delay the purchase. So, no regrets allowed!
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Old 07-27-2008, 07:18 PM   #302
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We have the sofa model and my warning there is if you don't just want it or need or think it would be more comfortable than the chairs (we did) you give up a lot of floor space for it, or at least the perception of floor space. We take our cocker spaniel with us and have two pre-teen sons and it can really get cramped on a rainy day.

BTW, our dog's feeding station is at the head of the bunk beds and we keep the trash can by the door...not my idea, my wife's. The L-shaped kitchen does make food prep easier. We really don't like the windows but the "padded" interior does deaden sound during rain and help keep it warmer inside during winter camping. We do most of our camping in Florida where it is generally too hot to not use A/C so the windows aren't that big of a deal for us, but we still would have preferred the Classic windows. We had the dealer install a roadside and end awning which helps with cooling on sunny days.
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Old 08-02-2008, 07:56 AM   #303
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Thumbs up It's home!

Howdy!

Well, got the new BH home. Beautiful! 2005 LS w/ a/v and solar upgrades, forest sage interior. Picked it up Weds and camped at Palo Duro Canyon before heading back home. We're so excited to finally go out w/ a unit that doesn't need constant repair, keeping us from enjoying what we should be doing: enjoying the Great Outdoors. As we have only ever camped in vintage units, some of the modern-day amenities will take some getting used to. I'm sure we'll adjust....
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Old 08-04-2008, 03:31 PM   #304
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Congratulations campw/4sons and welcome to the "Club". We used ours this weekend at a great lake near Columbus, GA. I'm sure you'll get lots of enjoyment out of yours. But wow, 4 sons...I guess you really need those bunk beds!
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Old 08-06-2008, 01:39 PM   #305
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Safari 30 BH Floor Plan?

I would love to see a floor plan of this layout. Does anyone have a copy or link to one? Thanks
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Old 08-11-2008, 02:54 PM   #306
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Hi all

Colonial Airstream maintains archived layout and exterior/interior pictures of the Safari Bunkhouse here.

On another subject, a not so funny thing happened to us in Vernal, Utah. As we were pulling out of a business parking lot, we somehow scraped the black tank valve and almost broke it off. Luckily it held and no black water surprise. The road surface/curb just touched the lower flange of the valve, but that was enough to bend the thing back and almost break it. We had been concerned that with the black water tank and associated plumbing being at the rear of the trailer that this would eventually happen. So it was time for re-engineering.

We took a look at some pictures of 34 footers (again Colonial Airstream's website) and decided that our trailer's cloaca needed relocation to just behind the axles for better shielding:

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Features include two flexible rubber elements, a 90 degree 3" elbow attached to the black tank opening and a coupler connecting the black pipe to the valves/cloaca. We hope this will give the pipes some degree of flexibility if they ever hit the street again. We also included a flexible 1 1/2" rubber elbow and extra piping to connect up the gray tank. After 700 miles of travel the stitches are still holding.

Bye

Paul and Miriam
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Old 08-11-2008, 04:07 PM   #307
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RossFam05BH View Post

Features include two flexible rubber elements, a 90 degree 3" elbow attached to the black tank opening and a coupler connecting the black pipe to the valves/cloaca. We hope this will give the pipes some degree of flexibility if they ever hit the street again. We also included a flexible 1 1/2" rubber elbow and extra piping to connect up the gray tank. After 700 miles of travel the stitches are still holding.

Bye

Paul and Miriam
An added "plus" is the extra piping will hold a couple more gallons of "stuff".
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Old 08-11-2008, 05:15 PM   #308
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Us too...

Cool! Bunkhouse custom work!!

On our three week vacation this summer we found out the hard way how tender the piping rig is. I was concerned about the design from the first time I saw it, it appeared to be an afterthought. We tore ours off off road when the trailer dropped into a trench/hole, and did get the blue water surprise (without solids!!).

I did a similar boot style repair in the True Value parking lot and it now sits at JC. It sure would be great to get the grey water tank up in the frame rails and the sewer line inside the belly wrap.
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Old 08-13-2008, 02:08 PM   #309
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I share in the concern for the black tank and sewer line. My concern has come from cutting too short when entering a gas station and nearly riding up on the vertical face of the curb and having to back up and try to maneuver away from the curb face to avoid riding up over the curb and then dropping down on the top of the curb with the sewer line being the thing that broke the fall. Luckily I was coming in off of a side street with virtually no traffic. Even so, while I was backing up a car came around my blind side and entered while I was backing up. Whew, close call on that one.
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Old 08-23-2008, 11:47 PM   #310
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I saw these videos some time ago and just ran across them again. The links below are to a 30' Bunk that was for sale on Youtube. After the modifications, we are down one 30' Bunk now.







I liked the relocation of the sofa, but it negated the dinette. I guess if you are a couple only, it would work.
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Old 08-24-2008, 11:20 AM   #311
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I saw those videos a while back. My question is why someone would go through the expense, time, effort to change the setup so drastically. Those mods did not look cheap! Seems it would have been easier to find a different A/S unit to change up for the necessities [unless he already had in his possession]
You're right MM, not only the issue w/ the dinette, but it negated the "spare bedroom" also. Seems to me that a different unit could have been easier to add the w/d and office to..... $0.02.
Wish I had some of that disposable income....
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Old 08-24-2008, 02:52 PM   #312
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I have to think they got a tremendous deal on it and thought they could do the mods themselves for very little so it would suit their needs easier than trying to do major mods to another plan. I can see that it would be easier to convert a spare bedroom to an office than to try to squeeze one in some where else on another plan. But then again, why do it to an Airstream when there are cheaper two bedroom trailers out there that would do the job if you just need a place to live for a year or so while renovating a house. I guess even for a temporary living arrangement they wanted to live in style!
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Old 08-24-2008, 04:13 PM   #313
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Maybe homeowner's assn would not allow anything but an Airstream...
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Old 09-15-2008, 10:15 AM   #314
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Front compartment leak fixed

I may have mentioned a few months ago that we took our bunkhouse to Colonial Airstream (NJ) to get the front compartment leak dealt with. I was holding back on commenting about it in detail until we had some experience with the fix. It has now been four months since the repair.

Overall, I'm very satisfied with the work. At my request, Colonial did not replace sheet metal to eliminate the cracks. Instead, they removed the front compartment door entirely and re-installed it. This allowed them to straighten the entire assembly (a bad fit was the reason for the rainwater leaks we were experiencing).

They also added reinforcing aluminum "L"-shaped pieces in the corners of the door frame, behind the main sheet, and riveted / caulked them in place.

Finally, they sealed some leak points along the underside of the door that I wasn't even aware of.

The final look is similar to the factory door, except that you can see where the technician adjusted the frame to make it fit, and there's a bit more caulk visible. The cracks are still visible too, but have been sealed. The extra rivet you see in the photo is securing the second sheet of aluminum (not visible, behind the outside sheet).

It is slightly less "pretty" than before, but after driving through several torrential downpours on the highway, I can say with certainty that it does not leak anymore! Not a drop. I'll happily take that in exchange for a slightly "beaten up" appearance on the door frame.

Also, after about 7000 miles of towing the repair has retained its integrity and the cracks are no longer migrating across the aluminum. I'll keep an eye on this and post again if anything changes. For now, my recommendation is to get this repair if you want to keep access to the front compartment. My total cost was about $400.
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Old 09-15-2008, 02:40 PM   #315
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Thanks for the update and description of the fix. I am afraid I'm going to have to go that route. I don't have the cracks but I do have the leaks when towing in the rain.
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Old 10-29-2008, 08:44 AM   #316
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2005 axles

Our Safari 30 has logged somewhere between 60,000 and 70,000 miles of towing at this point. Looking at the axles, I'm wondering if they are already starting to approach the need for replacement, or if they are typical of Safari 30s. (For this model year's production, I believe Airstream was using Dexter axles instead of Henschen.)

Check the pictures. The trailer is lightly loaded in these photos (perhaps 200 lbs of stuff, a half-full water tank, and empty gray/black holding tanks). It is unhitched, level, and parked on level concrete.

How does the torsion arm angle compare to yours? Mine is very slightly positive as compared to the frame in front of it. (Frame is black in the photo, torsion arm is brownish.)

How does my wheel well height compared to yours? Mine is exactly 26" from floor to bottom of wheel well trim.

Although I have disc brakes and most Safaris have drum brakes, this should not make a difference to the torsion arm angle. I'd be interested in any and all comparisons from other Safari 30 bunkhouse owners.
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Old 10-29-2008, 10:36 AM   #317
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The angle of the trailing arm looks like it is pointed up, instead of down. From what I have seen and read, they look like it is time to replace them.
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Old 10-29-2008, 10:55 AM   #318
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Unhappy Uh-oh

Whoops, you're right. I always get it backwards. Yes, our angle is slightly negative, not positive as I wrote earlier. That does seem to indicate we're needing new axles. Bummer.

I'm really surprised. Sure, we've logged a lot of miles. But 60k miles and three years wears out the axles? I checked the sticker on the axle and confirmed that in fact they are Henschen axles (not Dexters), rated at 4400# each. Is it just our full-time lifestyle that killed them?

I'm still interested in hearing from other owners as to the state of their 2005 Safari bunkhouse axles. When you post, it would be really helpful to know your total towing mileage and to have a picture similar to the ones I posted.
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Old 10-29-2008, 11:00 AM   #319
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Whoops, you're right. I always get it backwards. Yes, our angle is slightly negative, not positive as I wrote earlier. That does seem to indicate we're needing new axles. Bummer.

I'm really surprised. Sure, we've logged a lot of miles. But 60k miles and three years wears out the axles? Could it be that the Dexters don't hold up as well as the Henschens, or is it just our full-time lifestyle that killed them?

I'm still interested in hearing from other owners as to the state of their 2005 Safari bunkhouse axles. When you post, it would be really helpful to know your total towing mileage and to have a picture similar to the ones I posted.
Rich,

According to Andy, there is another test and that is run one axle up on a ramp and see if the other drops 3". If so, there is still elasticity in the rubber rods. I thought that non use was death on axles, and therefore hardening of the rubber rods, and not use. You certainly use the Airstream more than the minimum. You certainly can see the tires over the top of the wheelwell, as I recall, another test of the axles.

Bill
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Old 10-29-2008, 12:35 PM   #320
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Rich,

According to Andy, there is another test and that is run one axle up on a ramp and see if the other drops 3". If so, there is still elasticity in the rubber rods. I thought that non use was death on axles, and therefore hardening of the rubber rods, and not use. You certainly use the Airstream more than the minimum. You certainly can see the tires over the top of the wheelwell, as I recall, another test of the axles.

Bill
On our 31', there was still plenty of travel in the axle arms, but they were worn out to the point they just kind of flopped around, and one arm even fell off when I removed the shock. What this means is, there is more than one way for an axle to fail.
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