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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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Originally Posted by rluhr View Post
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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Old 10-29-2008, 02:22 PM   #321
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Hey All,

The axles on our trailer (Henschens, rated at 4200#) have clocked about 30000 miles since we received it in Oct. 2004. I see at least 5-10 degrees negative; much more than exhibited by the axles on Rich's trailer. The height from ground to aluminum is 25.5". We run 16" tires and rims, which should raise our trailer by 0.75" in comparison to Rich's. I guess we have about 400# extra in the trailer with a quarter tank of water and the mods I have performed. I would take pictures, but the wife hid the digital camera in her purse and took it to work. I will try to post pictures later tonight.

Bye,

Paul
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Old 10-29-2008, 03:10 PM   #322
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Photos will have to wait for weekend at least. I can see quite a bit of tire between rim and wheel well when I look at the trailer, but only have less than 20K miles on it. I will have to do the math to come up with more accurate total since I haven't added it up lately.

I know you have done a lot of boondocking and off pavement camping, could that have added to premature ware?
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