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Old 03-07-2013, 01:04 AM   #1
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1989 34.5' Airstream 345
la mirada , California
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Pulling engine questions

I have a 1989 34.5' Airstream 345. I blew up the Chevy stock 454 engine and have to replace it. I`m told I need to lift the entire shell off the frame, to do this. 911 HELP does anybody out there reading this, know anything about the engine swap?? Does it take a crane to lift the body?? Has anyone done this??
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Old 03-07-2013, 04:52 AM   #2
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1974 20' Argosy 20
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Originally Posted by TLTREAT View Post
I have a 1989 34.5' Airstream 345. I blew up the Chevy stock 454 engine and have to replace it. I`m told I need to lift the entire shell off the frame, to do this. 911 HELP does anybody out there reading this, know anything about the engine swap?? Does it take a crane to lift the body?? Has anyone done this??
You were told wrong! A lot of people here on Airforums have removed and replaced the 454 engines in their motorhomes.

Here is a thread on one of the latest well documented members to do so, 454 removal & install.

I have also performed this task on a 345 and an Argosy 20. It's not a fun process but it is definitely doable. I found it easier to do on the later 345 than I did on the earlier Argosy.

The engine comes straight out the front which is why the 345 is easier than the Argosy. It appears Airstream realized engines would need to be replaced at some point and in the later coaches the redesigned the front to make removal somewhat easier. On the Argosy motorhomes there is more to remove before you can get the engine out.

Brad
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Old 03-07-2013, 04:56 PM   #3
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1989 34.5' Airstream 345
la mirada , California
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Originally Posted by bkahler View Post
You were told wrong! A lot of people here on Airforums have removed and replaced the 454 engines in their motorhomes.

Here is a thread on one of the latest well documented members to do so, 454 removal & install.

I have also performed this task on a 345 and an Argosy 20. It's not a fun process but it is definitely doable. I found it easier to do on the later 345 than I did on the earlier Argosy.

The engine comes straight out the front which is why the 345 is easier than the Argosy. It appears Airstream realized engines would need to be replaced at some point and in the later coaches the redesigned the front to make removal somewhat easier. On the Argosy motorhomes there is more to remove before you can get the engine out.

Brad
Thanks Brad

I have forwarded this information to
Frank Bridwell my mechanic in Pahrump Nevada
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Old 03-08-2013, 01:04 AM   #4
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1989 34.5' Airstream 345
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Brad, Any tips or sugestions how to approtch this

I have bought a Chevy 468 bored out 454 motor and fuel injection kit along with giving my mechanic $1500 upfront he had had it in his yard since November 2012 promising me in September 2012 to change the engine out, so he has my Airstream and the money for the motor and injection along with pay paling him $1500 upfront to supposedly waiting for a friend to get the crane or large forklift to do it. I was abit skeptical so I went and talked to him, know hearing this from you, I feel like I am being fooled by him I hope he reads this and does this work or he has been deceiving me and drawing this out. How long hour wise did it take you as we just had a handshake deal with my cousin and him? Any tips tricks you can give me to tell him if he's not reading this, as the procedure or special tools ect. to do this? Please Sir Help me out here Thank you Brad, I`m Terry my number is 714-234-6006
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Old 03-10-2013, 07:48 PM   #5
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Terry,

That's a nice looking Airstream!

As we discussed on the phone, you need to be very leery of this mechanic that has your motorhome. I see nothing good coming out of this deal. When he said he needed to get a crane to lift the shell it tells me he doesn't have a clue what he is doing.

It is a straight forward process to pull the motor out the front. As we discussed give him my phone number and I'll be happy to walk him through the process.

Better yet, get your money back from him any way you can and take the motorhome to the other guy in town. I just don't see how the current situation is going to work. There is so much he could damage or destroy if he doesn't know what he is doing.

Good luck and keep us posted as to what happens.

Brad
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Old 03-21-2013, 02:48 AM   #6
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Terry,

That's a nice looking Airstream!

As we discussed on the phone, you need to be very leery of this mechanic that has your motorhome. I see nothing good coming out of this deal. When he said he needed to get a crane to lift the shell it tells me he doesn't have a clue what he is doing.

It is a straight forward process to pull the motor out the front. As we discussed give him my phone number and I'll be happy to walk him through the process.

Better yet, get your money back from him any way you can and take the motorhome to the other guy in town. I just don't see how the current situation is going to work. There is so much he could damage or destroy if he doesn't know what he is doing.

Good luck and keep us posted as to what happens.

Brad
Brad,

I did give him your number and told him to call, he's still insistent on doing it somehow with a fork lift to save time, I asked him for the motor and injection kit along with recouping the money back and told him if he couldn't do it Id take it somewhere else he still says he can do it. I`m giving him 2 more weeks as today he's supposed to have the forklift love the stickers keep you posted thanks terry
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Old 03-21-2013, 06:41 AM   #7
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Brad,

I did give him your number and told him to call, he's still insistent on doing it somehow with a fork lift to save time, I asked him for the motor and injection kit along with recouping the money back and told him if he couldn't do it Id take it somewhere else he still says he can do it. I`m giving him 2 more weeks as today he's supposed to have the forklift love the stickers keep you posted thanks terry
Terry, he won't save any time and will likely mess things up pretty good because you can't control a forklift as well as you can a standard engine hoist. A forklift might work ok for pulling a motor out of a car with no hood on it but the motion for pulling the motor on an Airstream is up 1/2" back 2", etc. Up 1/2" back 3". I shudder to think what damage this guy is going to cause

I have no idea how he is going to be able to attach the motor to the forks. Chains will not work due to the lack of clearance. The lifting plate that attaches to the intake manifold is the ONLY way to do it safely and easily.

If he hasn't started the prep work yet then having the fork lift right now won't make a difference. There is several days worth of effort just to get the front end of the motorhome ready for the engine removal.

All I can say is keep your fingers cross...

Brad
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