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Old 11-20-2005, 09:40 PM   #1
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Frame Replacement Cost

I have spotted what I believe to be a '56 Overlander that I might inquire about, but I know it has a bad frame as the tongue portion is bent upward at an unhealthy angle.

I have previously shied away from anything needing frame repair. I should probably run away this time, but I just can't do that (yet). However, I did peek inside this unit and other than the front to back, floor to ceiling junk that is stored inside it, it looked to be in decent condition (well about the 5% of the interior I could see anyway). I am wondering whether it is worth my time to find out more about it and possibly see if it might be "for sale". Needless to say it would require a flatbed to move it and I suspect that it'd take more effort and $$$ to repair the frame than to just replace it. I assume that the floor is also shot and would need to be replaced. Right now I can only hope that the rest of the interior wood work is in decent condition. Obviously the appliances are also a big unknown.

Can anyone tell me what it might cost to have a new 26' frame made? I assume that there'd be enough left of the original to use as a template. Anyone know of any good shops that can remake an Airstream frame? Anyone got a used frame in reasonable condition that should fit a '56 Overlander? It's a single axle, if that matters, but I assume either the frame or the trailer could be modified to fit the opposite with enough effort if a tandem axle frame were available.

Anyway, I am just trying to gather enough info to decide if it is worth finding out more about this unit. I hate to see any Airstream rot away, especially one from the 40's or 50's.

Thanks in advance . . .
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Old 11-20-2005, 10:21 PM   #2
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66Overlander,

On the bend tongue, the repair cost will depend on how far back the damage is. I had the tongue on my 1954 Liner replaced from the body out, for two reasons, 1) needed a longer tongue since the equalizer brackets were touching the body and 2) wanted a 2 5/16 ball to match my Safari. The shop bent the frame staight at the point it the taper stops about four feet inside the front and replaced the frame from the body forward. Pictures of the straightened frame and new tongue are below. The cost was about $800.
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Old 11-20-2005, 10:34 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wkerfoot
On the bend tongue, the repair cost will depend on how far back the damage is.
Thanks for the quick response. In the case of this Overlander, the point of bending was just inside the front skin and it caused a little buckling of the skin when it did so. I think the skin can be bent back into shape without being too noticable (it will be behind the LP bottles after all). Of course replacing that section of skin could also be an option.

I am assuming that the frame has more issues, though, because there is also rust thru on the rear horns that go to the bumper.
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Old 11-20-2005, 10:45 PM   #4
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Title Change Request

In case one of the moderators sees this post, I am thinking that a better title for this string might be " '56 Frame Questions ", if you wouldn't mind changing it for me. Thanks.
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