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Old 12-07-2014, 04:23 PM   #1
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1991 35' Airstream 350
Austin , Texas
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Help Needed !

I'm in serious negotiations to purchase a 1991 Airstream 350LE (Classic) motorhome. I've commissioned the dealer to have the 454 engine, transmission and drive train fully checked-out by a Chevrolet mechanic familiar with this chassis. What I would like to complete is a checklist of items that 350LE owners would suggest need to be carefully examined. Can anyone help me out here?
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Old 12-07-2014, 04:56 PM   #2
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1994 36' Classic 36 Diesel
Manhattan , Kansas
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All systems.
1. HVAC [Heating, Venting, and Air Conditioning] (Dash, both rooftop units, auxiliary rear, and both furnaces.
2. Refridgerator.
3. Toilet functionality.
4. Verify air admittance valves (AAV) are good (if not you will get a sewer smell when the coach is sealed up and you turn on the ceiling vent fan to exhaust)
5. Ceiling vent fans (all of them to include the bathroom)
6. May try to have them change all the internal 12v bulbs with LEDs. It is something you would do anyway over time, and so might as well have them cover it.
7. Ensure the gauges on the dash work.
8. Verify the black water tank flush if equipped is working properly and not clogged.
9. Ensure the generator has a full service completed to include, filters, carb rebuild, oil change.
10. The brakes should be a considerable concern, either check yourself, or leave to the mechanic.
11. When you test drive remember the P30 chassis is a bit loose on the steering side, but you could play it to your advantage requiring the super steer bell cranks to tighten it up.
12. Go over the electric carefully.
13. Check the water pump for age, leaks, and consider having them replace it anyway, and consider requiring them to keep the old one for a pinch.
14. Also have the coach appraised by someone with no stake in the deal. The appraisal can be used for cash value insurance for the first two years after the purchase in most states regardless of age. Also can be used to further negotiate.

Let me know if there is anything else I can do to help.
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Old 12-07-2014, 05:16 PM   #3
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All of the above PLUS.....

Condition of subfloor main steel grid work which is welded onto the truck chassis and supports the subfloor.

The steel used for the steel framed grid work which is very thin and very susceptible to rusting out. If it collapses it is a real pain and costly to replace.

Subfloor condition.

Look for damage in the corner by the step up to the passenger seat. Windows leaking will allow water to come down to the channel and it usually ends up coming out at the bottom corner. There are other spots in the coach to check but mainly around windows and doorway. I'm not 100% sure what subfloor were put into 91 345's. It could be OSB board (very bad if wet) or plywood (not so bad but wet is never good). IF it has rotted out I have a thread about replacing it.

Tires....getting harder to find 8R19.5" and you will have 8 to possibly replace, $2,000.00 plus.

Electric deadbolt working if applicable?
Spot lamp work?
Condition of main door latch as parts are non-existent.

Check all warning lamps that they light up when ignition turned to on and the bulbs haven't been pulled.

Last but defiantly not least.......does the door chime work....if not, RUN.

Cheers
Tony
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Old 12-07-2014, 05:38 PM   #4
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Air suspension bags, front and rear. Dont let anyone tell you that it doesnt have air suspension because its supposed to. Ive heard of some sellers trying to pull that one.
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Old 12-07-2014, 05:52 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mayco View Post
Air suspension bags, front and rear. Dont let anyone tell you that it doesnt have air suspension because its supposed to. Ive heard of some sellers trying to pull that one.
It's better without the air suspension as it gives you a more direct feeling for the road....

Seriously???my door chime joke fell flat again?

Cheers
Tony
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Old 12-07-2014, 07:33 PM   #6
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Tony, where the heck were you when I decided to buy Dad's Toy? If I had known about that damn door bell and that it was a sign of all to come, I would have taken my brother's advice and I would have run like hell in the other direction!


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Old 12-07-2014, 07:34 PM   #7
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By the way, my door bell goes "dink donk" instead of "ding dong"


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Old 12-07-2014, 07:36 PM   #8
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1991 35' Airstream 350
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There is a door bell????
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Old 12-07-2014, 07:38 PM   #9
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Seriously, make sure the power plant, frame and skin is good. Most folks do allot to the interior to make it there own anyway. But with out good bones you will be chasing your tail!!
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Old 12-07-2014, 08:20 PM   #10
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I want a door bell
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Old 12-07-2014, 09:52 PM   #11
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Mike If you have the balls to take this one off him....it's yours and it would make for a hellava door bell...Donka-Donk.

Just remember...he can run a lot faster mad than you can scared.

Cheers
Tony
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Old 12-07-2014, 10:12 PM   #12
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Just thought of this... The original converter for our motorhomes is awful. Recommend getting them to add a xantrax inverter/converter/charger in the deal if at all possible.
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Old 12-08-2014, 04:06 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vycan View Post
Just thought of this... The original converter for our motorhomes is awful. Recommend getting them to add a xantrax inverter/converter/charger in the deal if at all possible.


Good point!! If it still has the old Energenius It is a fire waiting to happen and must have the inverter/converter stripped off of the breakers. Then a seperate converter can be added and even an inverter if you wish.
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Old 12-08-2014, 09:43 AM   #14
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Austin , Texas
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I'm not sure how this reply will work but it is to all of you fine gentlemen and ladies who volunteered these valuable check lists which I will use as negotiations proceed. Clearly chassis/body and mechanical items are critical and will be checked-out (including the door chime which could end-up being a deal breaker of course!)
I'll keep you'all posted as the deal unfolds and maybe post some pics as the rig head to Austin (Texas). again mille grazzie all!
Chris
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