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Old 06-29-2006, 01:14 AM   #1
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Question 1978 Sovereign 31' Value

I am bidding on a 1978 Airstream Sovereign travel trailer 31' long. It says she has been stored for the last 7 years. What would the value be on something like this. The pictures are limited but I am interested in purchasing the unit but it looks like it could really need some work. The cabinet looks like water has been leaking through the roof and it has a rear bathroom which is not my prefered choice. This is ebay item number 190002004225.ThanksOkie Guy
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Old 06-29-2006, 07:00 AM   #2
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1977 31' Sovereign
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Properly fixed up these units fetch about $5,000. If you do not have the opportunity to inspect this unit in person or use one of our people here look at it for you for a fee, you are taking a big chance. You may find lots of expensive surprises when you go to pick it up.
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Old 06-29-2006, 07:16 AM   #3
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The 3 big ticket items I would be concerned about are rear end sag, floor and axels. With out information about these items I would not consider the trailer. BTW, the trailer is sitting low, a bad sign for the axels.
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Old 06-29-2006, 07:50 AM   #4
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I have two 1978 trailers(one sold) and this looks good, but with three days to go the price looks high, at the present price you could improve and not be in to deep. Tires, battery, bearings are autumatic. I like the vinyl walls and our only problem was the vinyl on the bath plywood walls came loose. I replaced the bath/shower wall with a piece of acrylic plastic and glued the other wall back togeather. I think the full bath in the rear is great, with lots of storage. When we bought the sovereign 6 years ago the walls and ceiling were sticky and I tried everything to clean. Ended up with Krud Kutter on fifth washing of wall and it clean up nice. Had to wash last year, but it was a simple wash down. Flooring was bad on in three spots in the sovereign and all were patched prior to a coat of epoxy and new carpet. When I removed bath wall I found the worst section under the tub had gone undetected! This was the largest area to replace and most difficult to get at.
On my 78 Tradewind the floor is original and in good condition thru out. I have Zip dee awnings on two trailers and they are much better than any others, my sovereign has A&E and are definately not as good!
I rebuilt the furnaces, cleaned and replaced fan motor on one, cleaned other.
I think Ebay prices tend to be high, but without seeing the trailer its hard to evaluate. Owners tell you what the know usually , but probably don't understand that 7 year old tires that look good are not safe on the road. Batteries that were new and never used may be shot after years of storage.
Paul
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Old 06-29-2006, 09:30 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dwightdi
Properly fixed up these units fetch about $5,000. If you do not have the opportunity to inspect this unit in person or use one of our people here look at it for you for a fee, you are taking a big chance. You may find lots of expensive surprises when you go to pick it up.
sorry, but I would disagree on the pricing. Rear baths bring somewhat less than rear bedroom, but lately a "fixed up" trailer of this type is bringing 6000-8500 everywhere I have looked. In fact I have been looking for several months after settling on this model of choice for us.
I did buy one also, just last week.
The typical leaks will be in almost all unless the po already addressed that from what I understand. The layout is important as if you really want a rear bedroom, you will always be lusting for another trailer if you don't get it this time around.
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Old 06-29-2006, 09:59 AM   #6
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Thanks for all the great information. The axle isn't something I had thought about. I had planned on taking the trailer to the tire shop before driving anywhere.
Thanks Again
Phil
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Old 06-29-2006, 10:38 AM   #7
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Hard for me to tell by those pictures, that the axles are bad. Some folks might say that my axles are bad, and they are only 3 years old! How low the trailer SEEMS to set is determined by the tire profile, i.e., radials or bias ply tires. It is best determined by looking under the trailer at the arm angle.

Here is a picture of mine right after install. I used the old hubs, that's why the bearing caps look kind of ratty.
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