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Old 09-16-2014, 07:58 PM   #1
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My (new to me) '69 Sovereign

Well, I brought her home today. This is our first AS and can't wait to get started on her so we can start using her. I'm setting a 1 year goal. Not sure if it's realistic or not, but got to start somewhere. Speaking of starting somewhere.I know I need to make it water tight. Replacing all window, door, and vent gaskets are a first step. What else should I be doing to get it tight for winter? I'm going to try and get a metal carport instead of storing it for the winter so I can work on the interior with a little electric space heater.
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Old 09-19-2014, 02:58 PM   #2
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Hi tcoffee,

Congrats on your new trailer! If you haven't already, I recommend reading some of the full resto threads on here. There are some very talented and knowledgeable folks on the forums.
Waterproofing is definitely a good first step and there are some pretty common leak points. I know that our 67 Sov was leaking a lot around the rear tail lights and at the rear bumper. We of course had rear floor rot and separation. We also had a major leak at the fridge vent, it had rotted the floor under the fridge and in front of the door. After that look for other major leak sources. Mine were the roof vents, particularly plumbing vents and the fridge and stove vents. I also had to replace the astrodome and get it watertight. You will want to check out yours as well. Doors and windows next. And then check seams and rivets. I actually had a loose rivet that was letting water into the trailer.

Good Luck!
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Old 09-19-2014, 03:52 PM   #3
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Well, I brought her home today. This is our first AS and can't wait to get started on her so we can start using her. I'm setting a 1 year goal. Not sure if it's realistic or not, but got to start somewhere. Speaking of starting somewhere.I know I need to make it water tight. Replacing all window, door, and vent gaskets are a first step. What else should I be doing to get it tight for winter? I'm going to try and get a metal carport instead of storing it for the winter so I can work on the interior with a little electric space heater.
Make sure to check the sewer vent pipe cover gaskets, as they only last 2 to 3 years.

Andy
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Old 09-19-2014, 04:50 PM   #4
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1986 34' Limited
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Welcome to the Airstream community. You will be pleasantly surprised at the valuable help you find in these Forums. The Sovereign was the top of the line trailer in 69, and you have the first year of the new body style. It will be fun to fix all the worn out stuff and make it nice for you and yours.

David
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Old 09-19-2014, 05:20 PM   #5
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Thanks guys. I just got into the rear belly pan under the black tank. It was rotted. I'm not sure if the black thank has a hole in it or if it's from the rear leak from the bumper. Do the two cross bars that have a bolt on each side hold the black tank in? The galvanized box the foam is in is rotted to so I need to take I'd out but don't want the tank to drop out and rip the pluming up. I have about a foot of flooring that needs replaced so I prob have to take the bath out anyways. On a good note all the steel frame and outriggers look awesome. Still have the factory grey paint/primer on them.


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Old 09-19-2014, 05:25 PM   #6
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Old 09-19-2014, 05:54 PM   #7
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Old 09-19-2014, 05:56 PM   #8
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Old 09-19-2014, 06:05 PM   #9
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Thanks for the pictures. The shell looks in really good shape. And so does the frame in the areas you have explored so far.

My black tank pan was also completely rotted away, and the rear bath floor had holes in it. After a lot of work, the floor has been replaced and so have the tanks. I wonder if your trailer has an above floor black tank?

You're gonna have a nice Airstream for comfortable traveling when you're done.

David
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Old 09-19-2014, 06:17 PM   #10
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David, was yours below? Mine is. Did you take your bath out to replace subfloor? And did you have to drop the BT to replace you pan?


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Old 09-19-2014, 07:27 PM   #11
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Dave, sorry. Of coarse you took the bath out. How difficult and time consuming was that. I've heard nightmares.


Tom
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Old 09-20-2014, 04:59 AM   #12
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Hello Tom,

There are many, many threads describing our adventures in overhauling old Airstreams. My 66 Trade Wind is the older body style and quite a bit different from your 69. I suggest you explore the Airstream Knowledge Base section of the Forums, and look under the 69 Sovereign trailers. Look for it toward the bottom of the Air Forums home page. There you will find Airstreamers who have already done what you are about to do.

"Gutting" an Airstream bathroom is not difficult. We always say the dismantling takes one tenth the time of the rebuilding. So don't get over zealous with the saws all. I would say the first thing to do is assess your trailer's condition and determine what is needed to get it back in action. Usually you will find appliances that don't work (water heater and furnace come to mind), plumbing that leaks, corroded belly pans, bad axles and brakes, rusted frames, floor rot, and on and on. Go through your trailer and determine what it needs to get back in action. It's 45 years old for goodness sakes.

I have hundreds of hours in my 66, but I'm retired and have the time. I enjoy working with my hands, learning new things, and solving problems.
Vintage Airstreams are a hobby, a rather expensive hobby.

Here is a picture of my rotted out bathroom floor. It ain't pretty. I only replaced the last 4 feet of flooring with the shell still attached to the trailer. I examined the rest of the floor and deemed it okay for now.

David
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Old 09-24-2014, 09:46 PM   #13
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Tom,

As as above on my 69 ambassador. I also extended down the frame a bit to put in larger black tank, a grey tank, and a fresh tank. It was a lot of work, but was worth it in the end.

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Old 10-13-2014, 05:09 AM   #14
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We love our 69 sovereign! Took us close to two years to restore inside and out. Nice knowing where and how everything works. Good luck. If you have any questions just let me know
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Old 10-13-2014, 05:15 AM   #15
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A few interior!
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Old 10-13-2014, 05:19 AM   #16
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A few more...
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Old 10-13-2014, 07:06 AM   #17
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Wow. Great job! Thank for the pics. I enjoy seeing what they are and can become.


Tom
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Old 08-28-2017, 07:38 PM   #18
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Sovereign

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Wow. Great job! Thank for the pics. I enjoy seeing what they are and can become.


Tom
Amen on that Tom! My 69 Sovereigns a wreck. But when the old war bird is done (:

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Old 08-28-2017, 07:45 PM   #19
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Tom,

I have your twin (:
Yours looks great!

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Old 08-28-2017, 07:47 PM   #20
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Beautiful looking Trailer!
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