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Old 05-01-2010, 01:16 PM   #1
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2007 25' International CCD FB
Northridge , California
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Newbie question re 70's rear bath trailers

Whew 1st post....ok we are considering purchasing our 1st we have experience No! but hey will learn as we go. We are considering a 70s Tradewind 25ft. Can someone explain if they have the grey & blk tanks and the advantages/disadvantages and all the hype about the rear bath/sag situation.


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Old 05-01-2010, 01:56 PM   #2
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1974 31' Sovereign
Ottawa , ON
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Welcome and good luck on your search!

Grey tanks didn't happen until 1974, so no, you won't have one on anything earlier. But be careful, we looked at a 25-footer that was tagged a 1974, and it didn't have one either, so buyer beware. Mind you, the '74 and '75 grey tanks were only 10 gallons!

Trailers with a grey tank will have two "guillotine" style valves in the rear "trunk". At least that's where i see them on all the '70s models I looked at.

Everything has a good and bad side, right? Rear bath is no option.

The way I see it, the PLUS of the rear bath is the space you get, way more than the mid baths that I've seen. No knees bashing walls.

Bad side of a rear bath is that if you are the person sleeping in the middle, everyone has to go by you to use the bathroom at night.

If you're always alone, no problem.

As for the rear sag issue, it's true that mid bath is less likely to have rear frame issues, but floors can rot causing problems on any vintage Airstream.

If it's to be, it's up to me.
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Old 05-01-2010, 03:22 PM   #3
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1974 29' Ambassador
1966 20' Globetrotter
Central , Illinois
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rear or center bath

We have a '74 rear bath Ambassador and really like it, others have the center bath and much prefer that set-up. There are many threads on the forum about rear end baths and the potential floor problems. I ended up replacing about 1/4 of our bathroom floor (not the finish floor, the wood sub-floor). There is way more info in the threads than I can summarize.

One factor to consider is how much remedial work you can/are willing to do. There will be some work, I can almost guarantee it.

The best recommendation I can offer, is find an inspector on these forums willing to look at the trailer and take them with you. The more experienced, the better.

Best of luck.
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Old 05-01-2010, 03:48 PM   #4
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1980 31' Excella II
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We like our rear bath Excella, there is a lot more room in the bathroom and you can shower, change clothes or get ready for bed without disturbing anyone or anyone disturbing you. There is the sag issue but it can also be a non-issue. If you buy the trailer without a sag after 30 or more years of use it probably has been fixed or will not sag if not abused. We try not to carry full contents in the grey or black tanks any distance or over rough roads. Put 12,000 miles on this year and nearly as much the year before and we have no sag problems.
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Old 05-01-2010, 06:20 PM   #5
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Rear sag is less likely in a 25' Tradewind than in a longer trailer.

If you're looking at a 70s Tradewind, it will have a rear bath. There are a handful of 27' Overlanders with center baths, but they're rare.

If you want a 25' with a center bath, you'll have to go into the 80s to get one. They're fairly common in those years.

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Old 05-01-2010, 06:34 PM   #6
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1974 31' Sovereign
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I just remembered that there are many floorplans of the various years over on the Airstream official site. They have scanned and uploaded a zillion old plans, ads, and spec sheets. This might give you a better idea of what was offered when.

Click here for that '70s section, both Airstream and Argosy.
If it's to be, it's up to me.
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Old 05-01-2010, 07:31 PM   #7
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1968 24' Tradewind
Oxford, , Mississippi
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Welcome to the forums.

Rear bath Trade Winds and Overlanders of that era are notorious for rotten flooring around the toilet and inside the rear hatch. Check very carefully for rot in the bath. Any sponginess is an danger sign. It is major effort to replace the rear floor, MAJOR. If you have the time and skill, you can do it. There are numerous threads on the forums about what is involved, you can read and see pics. Check that the galvanized box that holds the black tank is is good shape. There are folks active on the forums who will be glad to help you check out an older trailer. There is also a check list you can print, it will show you all kinds of things to look for. If you find floor rot, make sure you don't pay too much. My TW was a mess, but I bought it cheap. I have the time, but the hours required to really put one in shape are many, but I love it. Rather be working on my old Airstream than about anything I can think of (except camping).
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Old 05-01-2010, 10:13 PM   #8
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1972 25' Tradewind
Houston , Texas
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I have a 72 Tradewind. It's a great layout, just large enough at 25' and easy to pull for a starter. Mine has what's called a wet bath. No shower tub but a hand wand and curtains and a plastic bottom that seals to keep water in. There are Tradewinds that have the regular tubs, that takes an extra foot away from the front living space. No grey tank just the black until the mid 70s.
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Old 05-02-2010, 05:24 AM   #9
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Sometimes ours (depending on where we are at) will feel a little 'downhill-ish' in the bathroom, and we have benn known to take a small jack and set it under the bumper to give it that little bit of lift to keep us from worrying. I have heard of people welding their bumpers off to remove the extra weight...But I doubt we would ever alter this one. Enjoy your trailer!

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