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Old 06-27-2007, 09:12 AM   #15
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It's all in the weld!

Each of the last 6 Airstreams I have purchased have had step issues - from weak to completely torn off - luckily, the torn off ones still had the steps inside the trailer. We've (me and my welder) have developed a nice rebuild of steps team - about $125 for the welding and man are they strong! Of course, the $125 does not include my time to get to the frame so he could weld or putting it back together. It's quite a process with removing the floor but anyone can do it. Airstream did not do a great weld on the outriggers so over the years on these vintage units, the welds have broken and / or become weak. Call the salvage yards and you'll find some!
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Old 06-27-2007, 09:25 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3Ms75Argosy
Slightly related... my second step on the Argosy needs a new bolt ... the folding arm doesn't connect to the main step anymore. Is this bolt and bushing what I need? I thought it looked like a big rivet.

Any part number you can refer me too?
Andy, do you sell this?
Thanks!
Marc

Marc.

We stock all of the aluminum footstep parts.

Biggest reason the footsteps need parts? lack of proper running gear balance.

The various parts can be described in many different ways, depending on the individual.

We found many years ago, that there is but one way to get the correct footstep parts the first time, everytime.

We FAX a part breakdown to the customer and have them call us back with the parts they need.

Solves a lot of mis-communication and errors.

Our scanner is down, therefore I cannot post that exploded view of the footstep.

Provide your FAX number and we will forward that drawing within a few minutes.

Andy
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Old 07-25-2007, 11:57 AM   #17
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Running gear Balance?

Andy, What effect would running gear balance have on the aluminum step? Are you refering to vibration?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In
Marc.

We stock all of the aluminum footstep parts.

Biggest reason the footsteps need parts? lack of proper running gear balance.

The various parts can be described in many different ways, depending on the individual.

We found many years ago, that there is but one way to get the correct footstep parts the first time, everytime.

We FAX a part breakdown to the customer and have them call us back with the parts they need.

Solves a lot of mis-communication and errors.

Our scanner is down, therefore I cannot post that exploded view of the footstep.

Provide your FAX number and we will forward that drawing within a few minutes.

Andy
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Old 07-25-2007, 01:29 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Gkiesel
Andy, What effect would running gear balance have on the aluminum step? Are you refering to vibration?
Anything that it held together with rivets, screws, nuts and bolts (unless safety wired) will come loose sooner ot later, if shaken or vibrated enough.

Lack of, or improper running gear balance is a "HUGE" generator of vibration.

It's not a matter of what, it's a matter of when.

The "when" usually happens on that trip or vacation.

Doesn't matter if we like it or not, it "WILL" happen, and of course always at the wrong time or place.

No one would even think about getting in a tow vehicle with unbalanced running gear, but for some strange reason, that same owner typically will argue that the "Airstream or Argosy" trailers don't need it........

Huh?????

Just because they don't ride in the trailer, doesn't mean that it's running smooth down the roads.

Balancing the running gear, as it should be done, is the "BEST" health insurance policy any owner can have against unnecessay, crazy, and expensive repairs, that could have been avoided.

But, there are those that will disagree, but they still won't ride in a tow vehicle that has bouncing tires. Of course, most of those folks don't believe in Physics, either.

Different Physics for the tow vehicle than for the Airstream?

I don't think so.

Balancing the running gear has been talked about for over my 41 years experience with Airstreams. The facts were the same then, as it is now.

The laws of Physics, has not changed, but I understand that a couple of politicans are asking for a federal grant to study the problem.

Andy
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Old 07-25-2007, 02:06 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In

Biggest reason the footsteps need parts? lack of proper running gear balance.
The biggest reason my SOB rv had step issues was a concrete bridge.
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Old 07-25-2007, 02:52 PM   #20
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That, or my 400lb brother in law. But thanks Andy I get what your saying.
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Old 07-25-2007, 03:05 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In
...Biggest reason the footsteps need parts? lack of proper running gear balance...
Andy
I don't disagree with you, but sure seems that if everyone had their running gear in balance the A/S repair shops would be out of business. LOL!

I can admire a guy that stands by his convictions.
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Old 07-25-2007, 04:48 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wader
I don't disagree with you, but sure seems that if everyone had their running gear in balance the A/S repair shops would be out of business. LOL!

I can admire a guy that stands by his convictions.
No way would they be out of business, unless..........

They would still do the regular PM, like brake work, rebalance, replace tires, clean reefer burners and flue, clean water heater orifaces and burners, R & R furnaces and clean them internally, repair faucets, water pumps, toilets etc, change dump valves, holding tanks and gaskets, window, door, access compartment gaskets, vent cover and sewer vent pipe cover gaskets.

Then a real good shop will do the body work (ouch) and how about replasticoating?

Repairing the AC or installing a new unit, or installing awnings, rock guards and segment protectors happens frequently.

How about water leaks, plumbing leaks, and LPG leaks?

Repairing and/or replacing part of the floor that was water damaged happens a lot.

How about correct LPG pressures, so that the oven and water heater and furnace work correctly along with the reefer working correctly in the mountains as well as it does at sea level?

How about electrical problems, both 120 VAC and 12 VDC?

How about updating with new appliances, etc.?

And then we could bring up the subject of carpet, drapes and upholstery.

And then (hello insurance companies) broken windows.

If they keep a good or better inventory of parts, especially parts for the older coaches, such as we do, they will keep busy with ordering, receiving and shipouts.

Then to add to the overall picture, if they make parts for older trailers, buy parts and modify them so they will work on the older trailers, or have parts made for older trailers, that is a job in itself, as we do.

If they are dedicated to help the owners of older coaches, they will come up with things that will update the coach, and keep the costs down whenever possible, such as we do.

Then, heavens to Betsy, if they have a web site that is helpful to Airstream owners, that will take some time, too, not to mention posting on the Forums.

But then, there are shops that only want to do the PDI work on coaches that their dealer sold, and not much else. Oh well, how can they ask to be supported by their customers down the road?

A good service department will always be in demand, and if it contributes to the overall Airstream way of life, they will have plenty of work. Seasonal maybe, because of geography, but certainly busy.

The list of what a service department can do to help Airstream and other RV owners, is almost endless.

But some of the service departments that are around, hardly know where to begin. If it's outside the realm of PDI, their usually lost, someplace.

When a good dealer is found, they should be supported, so that when you really need them, they will be there for you.

Like I said many times, "And so it is."

Andy
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Old 07-27-2007, 12:00 PM   #23
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Perhaps you could go to an iron fabricator and they could make you a system For less that $300 or 600

Rae
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Old 03-31-2012, 09:19 PM   #24
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Steps

I am so glad I read these post. I have a set of steps that did not work properly so I removed them. My original plans where to leave the camper on my pond and I would use perminant steps. As of late I decided to strart camping with it. I will be using the steps I removed. Glad I didn't throw them away. Wow didn't realize they where so high. 76 Excella 500
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Old 04-01-2012, 08:50 AM   #25
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One of the biggest problems with the step assembly is the way it is supported. The outriggers are inherently weak because of the lightweight frame. A$ bolts the outriggers thru the floor of the trailer to help with the support. Bolting anything thru wood is inherently a problem. Even new wood will compress when pressure is applied. If the wood has been even slightly damaged by moisture it is even easier to compress. As the coach ages and the steps have been used multiple times the bolt heads begin to work their way down into the wooden floor. This causes the lose of support of the outriggers and they begin to flex each time you use the step. If you have the step assembly with two steps it makes the problem worse because of the additional leverage. eventually the bolts will pull completely thru the wood and in some cases the outriggers break lose from the frame.
If A$ would install an aluminum plate 1/2" thick by 2 or 2 1/2" wide across the door opening just inside the threshold then bolt the outriggers thru it. The floor would be sandwiched between the plate and the outriggers and the pressure applied to the bolts would be spread across the floor instead of just two small areas the size of a 50 cent piece.
A small improvement for a problem that has existed for more than a half century.
My question is. If there is a design team at A$. Why are we still dealing with half century old problems? The step problem is only one of many reoccurring problems that we as A$ owners have to deal with.
If A$ had it's act together they would design and produce upgrade kits to resolve issues like the step problem and make money with it.
I'm sure that owners of older coaches would be happy to pay for something that would fix the ongoing problem.
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