I've certainly got the bug now! While at BASH IV this lovely trailer came up on eBay. Luckily I was within an hour of the seller's location and able to go and see it in person. I asked Frank Yensan to go with me so that we could determine what the overall condition of the trailer was and hopefully exactly what it was.
I did my research and became as familiar with the 1953/54 model year. Oddly I had just purchased an original 1954
Airstream sales brochure which has the 1954
Liner in photo and drawings. It was clear to me it was not a 54. Airforums has some information about the Liner in the 53/54 model year and this trailer follows that information.
The badge number is 5006 so it is most likely a California built trailer and most likely built early in the year as the Liner numbers start at 5XXX, I'm assuming 5001.
My architect hat has me thinking that if they were doing what I would have done then these very early large Liners were in somewhat of an experimental stage and I'm guessing were probably somewhat customized. The interior fabric of this trailer is similar to one in Texas that I believe is an Ohio trailer and it is similar to a later badge numbered one made in California. This one however is very simple.
The exterior is fairly straight, however it has some modest damage, nothing that can't be fixed easily enough. All of the exterior lighting, except the running lights appear to be original. I think the running lights are from the 60s. I'll post photos and see if anyone can ID them. The trailer has 15, yes 15 operable windows and all work and have all parts.
The interior is a mess, but it appears that everything is there, minus of course the stand alone stove and the Marvel refrig...if anyone has a stove they want to sell PLEASE let me know. There are 7 metal lockers with wood doors and those wonderful 40s early 50s door catches, the interior of the lockers holds the story of the true paint color which is a wonderful zolatone that I hope can still be matched. The kitchen counter was modified so the wonderful cracked formica is gone but hopefully a nice piece of it will turn up so I can restore the countertop to its original state. The galley drawers and cutting board a in fantastic shape.
The bathroom is way cool. It has the original sink, formica, the cabinet, light fixtures, frosted window glass, glass shower door and shower pan. The toilet was replaced. It is roomy and will make a great bath when the trailer is restored. I love the bathroom it is probably my favorite part of the interior so far.
The true 1954
Liner had a very different kitchen layout and a slightly different bath layout...adding further to my instinctive feeling that this was an early 1953
kind of prototype. The rear bedroom is similar, however this one has no drawers under the two twin beds. Instead it has nicely built hatched space under the bed. I think it became quite obvious to the builders at the factory that this was not a good option (where would all the cushions go when you need to get into the space) and so the 54 Liner has two drawers. In this model there is also no night stand between the beds. I cannot tell if the original was removed or if there just wasn't one there. The back storage hatch is currently filled with a window air conditioner...which I will be removing very soon.
I hope this thread garners a little more feedback than the one I have going on the restoration of my 64 Overlander...even though that is one cool trailer as well LOL.