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Old 03-08-2012, 06:49 PM   #1
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Under Consideration: 1970 Sovereign Int'l

Hey guys,
Looking at another coach: 1970 airsteam project.

That '68 I was looking at did sell... I guess it wasn't meant to be. I keep waiting for the new owner to show up here on the forums!

This '70 has newer tires and (according to the current owner, for what it's worth) okay axles. Some soft subfloor areas have been replaced. She sure looks like she needs a lot of love.

I'm going to go see her in person tomorrow afternoon, and will take lots of pictures. I'm not planning on buying until April but this one's close enough that I'd like to go check it out. I haven't been in a 31' before, so I want to see what it feels like. If it seems promising I'll definitely contact an inspector from the forum.

I know about checking for the rear end separation -- anything else specific to the '70 that I should watch for?

Also, I have not had much in the way of haggling experience. I'd love to hear from those who have. I'm not looking to rip anybody off but I also know that listed prices usually include some wiggle room... any negotiating strategies or anecdotes much appreciated!

--CarrieSue
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Old 03-10-2012, 10:30 PM   #2
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Hey CarrieSue...

Let me know how your search is going. I am looking also... specifically, a 29'-31' - don't care which model... just needs to sleep 4 adults and a toddler.

We'll be traveling from So. Cal to Seattle and back at the end of August. I'd like to purchase in July.

- Rick
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Old 03-11-2012, 12:05 AM   #3
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From the look of the wheels relative to the body opening, I would tend to stongly doubt that the axles are "OK", but I am not an expert.

From what one can tell in the little photos, the outside and interior appear to be undamaged and complete, but there are still lots of things to be carefully inspected before a value could be determined.

Have you downloaded and printed out the Trailer Check-list that Janet thoughtfully posted in her beginner's series?

It's a good idea to get that ready, having read and understood all the terms in it (ask here if you aren't sure what any mean). It will allow you to have a complete, comprehensive idea of what you are potentially getting yourself into.
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Old 03-11-2012, 01:50 AM   #4
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Hi carriesue,

Sure , the axles are not OK as you can see the level of the chssis on the tires.... inside , that seems disgusting and when you sell something, you try to present it in the best way ... No description about fridge, A/C, converter, .... in fact consider this A/S as only an aluminum body with nothing inside and for $4500, it's not a good deal.
My advice.... don't buy !!!!

Bruno
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Old 03-13-2012, 02:55 PM   #5
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Thanks for the feedback -- a few other alluring candidates have appeared (including the '58 Overlander that's in the classified section; it's only a two hour drive away), so I am going to put this one on the back burner until I've checked the others out.

I do have the checklist at the ready and have met with a local inspector from the forum, so I am feeling pretty prepared... not that I don't still have a fair amount of anxiety!
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Old 03-13-2012, 05:09 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Y2k_Knight View Post
Hey CarrieSue...

Let me know how your search is going. I am looking also... specifically, a 29'-31' - don't care which model... just needs to sleep 4 adults and a toddler.

We'll be traveling from So. Cal to Seattle and back at the end of August. I'd like to purchase in July.

- Rick
Hey,
Check out the Fresno craigslist. I saw a 31' Sovereign for approx $5k. There weren't any pics but from the description it sounded like it was worth emailiing the owner for some pics. Sounded like it had some replacements and was camp ready. Hopefully, Fresno isn't too far out of the way.
Classic Airstream Sovereign
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Old 03-13-2012, 05:16 PM   #7
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Also, Rick. Might want to give yourself a little time before your trip. We purchased in January. We were all fired up and read to go with our 'camp ready' trailer only to find a few things that caused us to cancel two trips. Finally, (fingers crossed) our first trip will be this weekend and then we're off to Oregon for 5 days at the end of the month.
My point, you just never know what will turn up with a these used units. In any case, you're probably up for a few (hopefully small) surprises once you start playing with things.
Good luck in your search!
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Old 03-14-2012, 12:06 PM   #8
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hi again,

I agree with Mrs.Mod as you never know what problem you'll get with the time, once you 've bought a vintage unit.... problems hidden by the prior owner or simply naturally with the old age and the use...

About mine ( 27' overlander 1971 ), one problem by year.... leak the 1er year from water pump and all the floor wet with electricity cuts, univolt and toilet then, leak from the porous water heater and last year, the electric jack.....

NOT to afraid you but you have to be awared that this is not a new trailer and you'll have to replace parts from time to time.... that's the rule game with vintage things....

Good news: No problems with my genuine fridge, the heater, the A/C ( not the genuine one), the oven always perfect.... and with all that, we live full time 2 monthes by year .

Good luck in your searches.

Nb: my advice: If you have a doubt on a unit, don't buy it.... after it'll be worst !
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:02 PM   #9
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Ms. Mod, Thanks for the tip -- Fresno is hypothetically not too far away, not for the right coach. I'll check it out!

brunooffrance, Bonjour -- Je voudrais voir un(e?) Airstream en France! J'ai etudier le francais au college, mais je ne parle pas bien! J'ai visiter Paris, Toulouse, Arles, et Bezier et St. Chinian l'ete dernier, J'ai tout aimer, sur tout le vin rose et la lumiere dans la sud. Quelle chance vous avez de la voir a partir d'une Airstream. Merci pour vos... advice! I tried to write it all without cheating, but my vocabulary fails me -- I can't remember "advice."

Y2K Knight, I am definitely no expert but from what I've read I too would recommend a longer gap between your purchase time and your trip. But maybe fate will be kind to you!

Take Care, CarrieSue
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Old 03-17-2012, 04:16 AM   #10
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Hi CarrieSue again,

your french is great.... I've all understooden perfectly and about "advice", the french version is "conseil " ( -merci pour vos conseils-). I know french language is not easy to learn but the goal is to share opinions , not to speak as Molieres for you ( and Shakespeare for me.... ). happy you 've appreciate France and I immediatly think we are all in the same situation: we always see the neighbor's grass greener than yours.... you say I'm lucky to have an A/S in France and my dream is to get one in.... USA !!!

... but I know I'll get one in your country.... one day and may be near yours !!!!

best regards from France.

Bruno.
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Old 03-17-2012, 06:03 AM   #11
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Seems you are on the right path...checking axles, rear end separation ( isn't it time it gets it own acronym...."RES"?) Sounds like its too pricy for a long trailer too.. That overlander sounds like something to look into for sure! Just keep looking at trailers and (unfortunately) driving to see them... If you end up buying a trailer you are not in love with (because we are all in love with our airstreams) you will regret it, BUT if you end up getting an airstream that is many miles away you will quickly forget / justify the gas and time it took to her her home.....regardless, just keep looking and DON'T settle. AND make sure you really want a 30' trailer, that's a lot of trailer!!!
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Old 03-17-2012, 08:14 AM   #12
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Hi CarrieSue,

If you need advices for your future Airstream, you can find some in one of my blogs about that.... You have to go step by step in your choice and not considering that the longest trailer is better....
if you are only TWO , a 31' seems to me too long.... as my 27' couldt be smaller if I knew better the space I need.... it's an example among lot of others you can find in the blog.... have a look even if you don't plan to import an A/S in France....

here is the translated link:

Google Traduction

Bruno.
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Old 03-17-2012, 08:48 AM   #13
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Carrie Sue structurally the longer the trailer the bigger the flex. Thats why there is more rear end sag issues with longer trailers. The C channel frame isn't strong enough for the rear weight and eventually over time gravity wins. Mine started at the fulcrum points just fore and aft of the rear axle. Are you sure you want a long double axle trailer? Those axles can get pricey. Cant see the ad but I'm sure the axles need replacement. Not are hard job but a decent amount of work for sure
Also any time I hear soft floor issues I cringe a bit. Water intrusion is common in all trailers. Especially old trailers that have not been maintained. You get a fair bit of moisture where you are. The windows on the 70's trailers leak a fair bit if the gaskets are bad. I have a 65 Sovereign so I know. The floor under every opening was completely thrashed! just wrapped up the frame repair/ floor replacement on my project. Take a look, and don't take any PO's word on any repairs that have been done.
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Old 03-17-2012, 10:08 AM   #14
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Ms. Mod, Thanks for the tip -- Fresno is hypothetically not too far away, not for the right coach. I'll check it out!



Take Care, CarrieSue
Just curious, Did you email this seller for pics? I was looking at this ad and was dying to see some pics. If you do, post them. I was wanting to see the diference between this one for $5k and the one I just bought for $8500.

Good luck in your search!
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