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Old 04-29-2015, 01:47 PM   #1
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1995 34' Excella
St. Charles , Missouri
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 9
Front of Excella 1000 pulled loose.

34 foot, 1995 Excella 1000, with front Kitchen.
Picture shows where previous owner had placed lag screws through the rubber strap.These pulled out and I tried to replace them with several deck screws.Now the deck screws have begun to come out and the aluminum shell has ripped out. I had to shorten the door of the utility compartment to open it.
I am going to the dealer on Friday to see what the problem is and for an estimate to repair it.
Can anyone give me a heads up for what is coming?
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Old 04-29-2015, 02:17 PM   #2
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1972 31' Sovereign
Lexington , Minnesota
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Looks like the screws are going into the plywood floor - they are at the right height to be doing that. Since they are screwed into the edge of the plywood, they will not hold very well at all, and that section of plywood is probably compromised. As in rotted away. I'm guessing that they will want to replace the front section of plywood. The question will be how much plywood needs to be replaced and how much of the trailer needs to be dismantled to get the repair done.

Good luck!

Chris
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Old 04-29-2015, 07:27 PM   #3
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1986 34' Limited
1966 24' Tradewind
Conifer , Colorado
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I see your trailer has battery compartments in front like mine does. The heavy batteries fit in a plastic cabinet that is visible under the front gaucho. I found the battery boxes were not all that well supported, and could move, or wag side to side. I think the weight of the batteries at the front puts more load on the shell and floor. If your floor is rotted some, that might explain the buckle in the skin.

The repair isn't easy. It's going to be over $1000 I bet. And find the leak if that is the root of the problem.

David

PS I miss Inland Andy telling us we are towing with too big a vehicle. But I'm sure my Super Duty and ProPride puts more stress on the Airstream.
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Old 04-29-2015, 11:12 PM   #4
cwf
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1999 34' Excella
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Hillsboro , Texas
Join Date: Feb 2013
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Wow.. bad news... that is gonna be 'spensive... I am guessing over $3000.
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Old 04-30-2015, 04:15 PM   #5
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1956 26' Cruiser/Overlander
Wimberley , Texas
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 52
DIY. Your AS is almost vintage so it can be your hobby to maintain it and upgrade it from now on. Avoid making the dealer unnecesssarrily richer to do this easy one day max job for you. Start by exposing any rotted wood. Open up *only* the bare minimum metal to expose the extent. You should plan to approach from all approachable paths, e.g. top-from-inside-of-trailer, outside-from-removed-front-rail-panel, underneath via belly skin panel remove, etc. If rot is VERY extensive then you'll need to plan to remove & replace by adding suitable sturdy and durable material, like aluminum plating (from big-box store or any metal dealer; you can cut alum w/ a skil-saw metal blade, or similar; rout a "lip" on the good floor exactly deep enough to secure the alum plate FLUSH to the good floor use flat-head stainless-steel screws, or for added lifetime but longer job time use flat-head SS through bolts. (I don't think you should consider using any wood product to replace because the same problem will likely reoccur in 20 years time.) If rot is limited in its range, as I suspect, then it's also likely it will all be removable by a combo of wire-brush/chip/sand. Get it all clean and dry, then apply Bondo, yes Bondo. It is a tried and proven repair product. It's hard, durable, rot-proof, termite-proof, very shapeable, very water-resistant, and anyone who can already pull an AS Excella trailer can learn to work really well with Bondo in less than 20 minutes of practice and watching YouTube How-To videos - a gallon can of Bondo will probably be more than you need for this job and costs only about $35 to $40, at last look - it's also sold in qts & pts. Grind-to-shape/apply-finish coat(s)/sand smooth, then "button up" everything and get back to enjoying this beauty with the satisfaction that you did it yourself and saved a ton of money in the process.

Newbie poster but long time owner and always the DIY maintainer/upgrader of my one-family, 60 years young 26' 1956 Overlander-Cruiser whaletail, tandem axle, #6713, that still gets towed several thousand miles each and every year! (Yoda said, "When 900 years old you are, look as good you will not." That staement aptyly describes what having a vintage AS is ALL about )
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Old 04-30-2015, 04:56 PM   #6
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1978 31' Sovereign
Hot Springs , Arkansas
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The frame seal at the tongue is the culprit. It allows water to infiltrate and soften the whole front end... Mine is passable but will need to be replaced. When the day comes, I WILL use aluminum clad plywood.
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Old 05-01-2015, 07:54 AM   #7
in the rising sun toaster
 
1956 26' Cruiser/Overlander
Wimberley , Texas
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Preclude future water infilltration at your eventual repair time by considering the addition of a piece of shower pan liner material between the wood and the front alum skin/frame. Add a dollop of good sealant to the threads and the exposed tops of all screws that penetrate the shower pan liner.
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Old 05-01-2015, 12:37 PM   #8
cwf
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1999 34' Excella
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Hillsboro , Texas
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I have thread somewhere showing our weakened wood flooring repaired with "Git-Rot"... Maybe it will help???
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Old 05-01-2015, 12:57 PM   #9
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1991 34' Excella
1963 26' Overlander
1961 26' Overlander
Central , Mississippi
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Your front is structure is just like mine and has a common issue, Airstream stopped using a 'front hold down plate' in our vintage campers and the front is subject to failure. Use the search function and you will find lots of threads on 'front end separation' and 'hold down plate'

I added a plate to mine while I had the front torn apart preparing the floor.
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