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Old 12-10-2007, 10:15 AM   #1
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1960 22' Safari
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Is my spare tire causing frame sag?

My 1960 Safari has seems to have frame separation from the shell at the back of the trailer. The frame has been extended about 1 foot at the rear, and a spare tire carrier has been added to it. I have noticed that when I put jacks under the rear of the frame, it moves up about 3/4", and closes the gap between the shell and the frame. Should I cut the frame extension off to decrease the load on the frame?
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Old 12-10-2007, 10:24 AM   #2
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Our 23' had a bumper extension on it too when we bought it. It was the first thing I took off and returned the bumper to original. Airstreams don't like extra weight on the rear end.
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Old 12-10-2007, 10:34 AM   #3
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Where did you put the spare?
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Old 12-10-2007, 10:34 AM   #4
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yes, it is likely your spare tire is causing frame sag as is the frame extension. remove both and your going to have to remove the bellypan to look at the frame damage below.
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Old 12-10-2007, 10:38 AM   #5
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It sounds like you have some floor rot in the back. Removing the spare will not fix the problem. You need to do some surgery in the back and get the frame reattached to the shell.
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Old 12-10-2007, 10:47 AM   #6
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Yes, there is some rot in the bathroom corners. Does the plywood serve a structural function here? I thought the shell attached to the outrigger ends or the frame somehow. I have noticed that there are no cross members or outriggers in the rear 3 or 4 feet of the trailer, so the whole assembly looks weak to me.
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Old 12-10-2007, 11:05 AM   #7
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Yes the plywood is structural. the sequence is frame, ply floor, "C" channel, shell. The shell attaches to the "C" channel, The "C" channel attachs to the plywood floor, and the plywood attaches to the frame. In the back there are bolts that go through the combined components of the "C" channel, plywood, and rear frame cross member. If the plywood is rotted out then you will see movement of the thickness of the ply, at the rear end, usuallly around 5/8 to 3/4 of an inch.

Kip
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Old 12-10-2007, 11:23 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pauly g
Where did you put the spare?
We have a dual axle so a spare is not as important to us. The PO did carry a spare in our 23 up front within the frame rails under the front of the TT.
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Old 12-10-2007, 11:31 AM   #9
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hi pauly,

you can purchase a undermount tire carrier that they use for new airstreams. that's what i did for my '56 flying cloud. scroll down on the link and you'll see a picture of it;

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f411...d-27533-5.html
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Old 12-10-2007, 11:36 AM   #10
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Ahh - I see. I have read numerous posts about floor replacement, but I still am not clear on these bolts attaching the "C" channel. Do you have to cut holes in the skin to access them at the attachment points, or do you remove all the rivets holding the skin to the "C" channel, and take the whole thing apart?
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Old 12-10-2007, 11:45 AM   #11
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The popular method is to remove the lower inner skin. There is no advantage to removing the outer skin. Do a search on floor replacement and you will find more informatin then you can digest. I played this game on this thread.http://www.airforums.com/forums/f381...nte-26902.html
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Old 12-10-2007, 02:33 PM   #12
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In addition to removing the belly pan to look for frame damage, many people remove the inner skin to access the elevator bolts that bolt thru the C channel and attach the body shell to the plywood. If they are not there already, two bolts that are over the frame rails can also be installed to hold the frame, plywood floor and c channel of the shell together. The quick Airstream authorized fix that was done by the Airstream dealers in the late 70's and early 80's was to cut away the outer skin in the area over the frame rails and install these bolts from the outside. They would then Olymic rivet some patches on to cover the holes. That is why it is called the elephant ear fix. If you do not want to dismantle your bathroom, you might get away with that type of fix. You definitely want to get rid of that spare tire and the bumper extention. My 63 was factory designed to have room behind the propane tanks to put the spare in a vertical position. I use a solid van external tire cover to make it look a little better.
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Old 12-11-2007, 01:01 AM   #13
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Thanks for all the help! I think I will remove the spare tire, and maybe make the extension into a compartment to store lightweight stuff. My next big project will be a floor replacement. I'm going to wait until summer for that one.
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