Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 09-20-2014, 11:21 AM   #1
1 Rivet Member
 
Currently Looking...
Currently Looking...
San Antonio , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 5
Thoughts on a 345 LE

First post here so forgive me if I posted in the wrong place. I am currently looking at several Classics. I would appreciate some advice as I've never owned an Airstream. Here are some pics of the under carriage and engine of one I'm looking at. I'm concerned the rust is going to be too much of a problem but wanted a second opinion to be sure. Thanks in advance.

Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByAirstream Forums1411229713.466382.jpg
Views:	100
Size:	484.9 KB
ID:	222347Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByAirstream Forums1411229727.552343.jpg
Views:	102
Size:	491.5 KB
ID:	222348Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByAirstream Forums1411229741.119721.jpg
Views:	98
Size:	491.7 KB
ID:	222349Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByAirstream Forums1411229756.697512.jpg
Views:	100
Size:	555.0 KB
ID:	222350Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByAirstream Forums1411229775.308542.jpg
Views:	101
Size:	560.2 KB
ID:	222351Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByAirstream Forums1411229790.485258.jpg
Views:	95
Size:	545.7 KB
ID:	222352
__________________

__________________
roscoe210 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2014, 01:44 PM   #2
Rivet Master
 
345bill's Avatar
 
Las Vegas , Nevada
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 608
Welcome and it looks like you posted in the correct place. From the pics I'm guessing it's just surface rust as if maybe it was thoroughly steam cleaned then parked and sat. If so and you're thinking of buying it be sure to take it for a good long drive then give it a good looking over for any oil leaks, etc.

There are many people here to assist in if help is needed to check out all other systems as well.
__________________

__________________
345bill is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2014, 02:44 PM   #3
1 Rivet Member
 
Currently Looking...
Currently Looking...
San Antonio , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by 345bill View Post
Welcome and it looks like you posted in the correct place. From the pics I'm guessing it's just surface rust as if maybe it was thoroughly steam cleaned then parked and sat. If so and you're thinking of buying it be sure to take it for a good long drive then give it a good looking over for any oil leaks, etc.

There are many people here to assist in if help is needed to check out all other systems as well.

Thanks for the reply. Did the 345's typically come with 30 or 50 amp?The owner said he thought it was 50 amp.
__________________
roscoe210 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2014, 04:12 PM   #4
Airstream Driver
 
PeterH-Airstreamer's Avatar

 
1997 30' Excella
1983 31' Airstream310
Austin , Texas
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 3,374
Images: 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by roscoe210 View Post
Thanks for the reply. Did the 345's typically come with 30 or 50 amp?The owner said he thought it was 50 amp.
30 amp was stock, you get 30 and 20 amp if you run the generator and can use both A/C's
I would take a closer look at the rust and make sure it didn't cause problems beyond surface.
I am in Austin, Texas and could check it out for you if you can run it by my house. I am very familiar with the MH's especially the 280 and the 345's.
Its very easy to sink 10-15 k in these rigs, so consider that when you do the negotiating.
Good Luck
__________________
1990 29' Excella Trailer
1996 Airstream B190
1997 30' Excella Trailer
AIR #13
PeterH-Airstreamer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2014, 08:43 AM   #5
Rivet Master
 
wxbuoy's Avatar
 
1991 35' Airstream 350
Carriere , Mississippi
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 1,205
Send a message via Skype™ to wxbuoy
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterH-Airstreamer View Post
...............

Its very easy to sink 10-15 k in these rigs, so consider that when you do the negotiating.
Good Luck
Just to get them usable and reliable..... Even more if you want to make it nice looking and fashionable! ....but so worth it!
__________________
Dave and Felicia
wxbuoy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2014, 11:39 AM   #6
Rivet Master
 
Vycan's Avatar
 
1994 36' Classic 36 Diesel
Manhattan , Kansas
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 803
Blog Entries: 1
Couple questions for you:
1. How handy are you?
2. What is your experience removing, and treating rust?
3. How long do you plan to keep it?
4. How much is too much before you move to another prospect?
5. Where can you go in your area to have this taken care of?

The answer to your question is "it depends..."
__________________
1994 36' Classic Diesel Pusher
Vycan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2014, 01:02 PM   #7
1 Rivet Member
 
Currently Looking...
Currently Looking...
San Antonio , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vycan View Post
Couple questions for you:
1. How handy are you?
2. What is your experience removing, and treating rust?
3. How long do you plan to keep it?
4. How much is too much before you move to another prospect?
5. Where can you go in your area to have this taken care of?

The answer to your question is "it depends..."
Oh Manhattan. I had many a fun nights in that town. I lived in a house off of Osage for a year during college. Loved Pilsbury crossing, tutltle creek and Rocky Ford Tavern.

1. I'm just handy enough to be dangerous but have very handy friends and I'm not affraid to get after something and learn. After scouring these forums for the last month and a half. I feel reasonably confident that I will be able to tackle most of what I've seen on the forums. With the help of a few friends that have owned or own a trailer.
2. limited
3. forever
4. 10-15k
5. Honestly, I haven't gotten that far. I would be willing to exhaust all DIY methods before I would take it somewhere.

From a price standpoint, what do you feel a well maintained, 70k miles, beautiflul inside and out classic is worth? I see them anywhere from 10k to 65k. Obviously the lower end are going to be more project oriented but some in the 30k range look as though one could get lucky and find one with minimal issues. I'm trying to decide wether to go on the low end and just accept that its going to be a project regardless and make it mine. Or spend a little more and hope that there aren't any major surprises. Surprises are inevitable, this I'm aware of but that's part of what attracts me to the Airstream lifestyle. Thanks for the input.
__________________
roscoe210 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2014, 01:26 PM   #8
1 Rivet Member
 
Currently Looking...
Currently Looking...
San Antonio , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterH-Airstreamer View Post
30 amp was stock, you get 30 and 20 amp if you run the generator and can use both A/C's
I would take a closer look at the rust and make sure it didn't cause problems beyond surface.
I am in Austin, Texas and could check it out for you if you can run it by my house. I am very familiar with the MH's especially the 280 and the 345's.
Its very easy to sink 10-15 k in these rigs, so consider that when you do the negotiating.
Good Luck
I would love to however its not in Texas. I'm hoping to get an inspector out to look at it this week. I share your concern with just how far did the rust spread. Any other advice you can offer will be much appreciated. Nothing speaks like experience.
__________________
roscoe210 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2014, 02:29 PM   #9
Airstream Driver
 
PeterH-Airstreamer's Avatar

 
1997 30' Excella
1983 31' Airstream310
Austin , Texas
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 3,374
Images: 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by roscoe210 View Post
I would love to however its not in Texas. I'm hoping to get an inspector out to look at it this week. I share your concern with just how far did the rust spread. Any other advice you can offer will be much appreciated. Nothing speaks like experience.
Only collective experience would speak louder.
There have been may posts about pre purchase inspections with many good inputs from the experienced MH owners on this forum.
If you would ask me personally, what my criteria to purchase another classic would be, here you go:
1. One owner vehicle
2. Low documented mileage
3. Maintenance records
4. Original, non modified Interior
5. Original, non modified electrical system
6. A well maintained generator, able to pull the 50 amps it's supposed to.
7. Lots of zip dee awnings
8. Accident free exterior (clear coat peeling is part of the game)
9. Southern vehicle, not to close to the coast

Right away, you can count on $2000 for tires, no matter how pretty the thread is.
__________________
1990 29' Excella Trailer
1996 Airstream B190
1997 30' Excella Trailer
AIR #13
PeterH-Airstreamer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2014, 05:49 PM   #10
Dazed and Confused
 
Isuzusweet's Avatar
 
Currently Looking...
1983 31' Airstream310
Hillsburgh , Ontario
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 2,425
Where there's that amount of rust on the chassis there could likely be sub-floor rot as well. Be carefull as a moisture meter will not detect a bad floor with dry rot.

Also make sure that the metal frame work that the sub-floor is mounted to is okay. The metal is very thin walled stuff to begin with so having to jack the floor up to replace sections will be a beeaatch.

Welcome to the insanity.
Cheers
Tony
__________________
Isuzusweet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2014, 06:27 PM   #11
Rivet Master
 
Vycan's Avatar
 
1994 36' Classic 36 Diesel
Manhattan , Kansas
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 803
Blog Entries: 1
I spent five years researching and lurking on these forums before I purchased our classic this last March. (These were my observations for 345 and 360 any other models or yers before 78 were not involved in my research):
1. 78-84 classic gas; average was 12-18k, usually had lots of work to do, and were in disappointing condition. Add 5K if it was a diesel. (only looked at four)
2. 85-93 classic gas; average was 18k-22k, a couple very nice ones, and I mean Solar, Cable, and lots of goodies was 30k. Add 7k to the price if it was a diesel (majority of the ones we looked at approximately 12)
3. 94+ Classic Gas; average was 28-39k, best of the best here, but if you were looking for a diesel pusher, add 40-60k due to rarity. I think a total of 25 were made from 94-97, and four went on sale this last spring. One in California was stock setup with polished exterior, and 400 watts of solar on top, sold for 90k, another in Georgia with tiled bathroom and all reupholstered leather in modern themes sold for 60k.

I would recommend finding a place that can service it before you get forced into a corner on a project. It is nice to have the lifeline. I would also highly recommend a diesel over a gas, just on the fuel economy. I get double the economy with 12-14 mpg over my gas counterparts at 6-8 mpg stock, and 11 mpg with toad attached, compared to their 5-6 mpg.

Additional considerations:
1. When traveling in the summer months the Generator will run when you are driving to provide power to the A/C's. The Dash A/C is about worthless unless you add a clear plastic curtain right behind the driver and passenger captain's chairs. In the winter it's not so bad because of the auxiliary heater core next to the entryway.
2. To make the RV worth the purchase you need to spend at least one weekend a month camping.
3. Recommend looking into what your RV insurance covers.
4. Recommend you have the seller get an RV appraisal to validate the price, then use the appraisal for your 'cash value' insurance.
5. Always use a ground guide, and do not trust the backup camera.
__________________
1994 36' Classic Diesel Pusher
Vycan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-22-2014, 06:45 PM   #12
Rivet Master
 
crazeevw's Avatar

 
1989 34.5' Airstream 345
Saint Petersburg , Florida
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 1,687
Images: 28
Ok, here's a few questions.

1) Where is the Classic located?
2) Inspector someone familiar with Airstreams? Or Airstream Motorhomes?
3) What is asking price? Is it negotiable?
4) Is interior in 'good' condition, awesome, or lots of tears and ripped upholstery?
5) What years is this Classic, any idea if if has any of the options?

While to me your chassis photos appear to be surface rust, a one-on-one close up look is the only thing that will be satisfactory.

The 454 Chevy motor is about indestructible. Just read a Hot Rod article where they totally rebuilt it for less than $1500. Yes, the gas mileage can really suck on these things, but from what I hear, if you want to do 70mph in a Classic, you don't want a Classic, back off and do 55mph and enjoy the view.

Yes, if you can't go camping in it once a month, it's hardly worth the expense, but when you're working on it day and night to get your Classic to where you want it, waiting on camping is a small price to pay. I've had mine 3 years, and only camped twice before tearing it apart and getting rid of previous owners 'improvements'.....

This is totally a personal decision. Go by what you're told by Inspector. I drove over 7 hours to look at one, almost cried when I saw that about the only thing worthwhile on it was the brand new tires. Poor girl was just on eBay for $3000.00 more than what asking price was 3 1/2 years ago, so maybe these things are going up in value??

Good Luck, Derek

PS if you want, PM me, I'll try my best to answer any questions you may have.
__________________

__________________
crazeevw is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
345 Motorhome :: 2011 Airstream 345 cowboy7877 Airstream Registry Discussions 0 12-27-2011 04:38 PM
Thoughts? Paying $20K for 1989 345 LE crazeevw Classic Motorhomes 29 08-31-2011 06:17 PM
Thoughts on end of camping season yukionna Our Community 34 09-30-2003 09:31 PM
Thoughts on flat screen tv yukionna Off Topic Forum 15 09-16-2003 09:40 AM
Thoughts on quality and prices ipso_facto Our Community 4 04-29-2003 09:04 PM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:03 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.