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Old 04-14-2015, 06:03 PM   #1
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1967 26' Overlander
warrensburg , Missouri
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looking for frameworthy advice

So we have begun the deconstruction phase of our 1967 Overlander rebuild. We have lifted off the shell and removed all the plywood off the frame. The condition of the frame is in poor condition. The picture is what the majority of the fame looks like, quite a few of the outriggers are in the same condition. I plan to remake the frame myself. The big question is what material would be best to remake the frame? I see people use tubing and some use channel. I see pros and cons to both but am having troubles deciding which would be best for our airstream.
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Old 04-14-2015, 06:21 PM   #2
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1981 31' Excella II
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If you are going to put the trailer back to original, you can just use what Airstream used. If you are going to put extra black water and add gray water capacity then you should think about a 5" box beam. It really depends on how much extra stuff you plan to add over what the frame was originally designed for.

Perry
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Old 04-14-2015, 06:39 PM   #3
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1967 26' Overlander
warrensburg , Missouri
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We will be adding gray water tanks but not putting a black water tank back in as we will be using a composting toilet. The idea tossed around to move the bath to the side and doing a full rear bed. Still not totally sure. We aren't so much going for original. We will be putting in a larger fridge and a few more modern amenities.
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Old 04-14-2015, 08:14 PM   #4
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1981 31' Excella II
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Newer trailers have a 5" tall box beam. Did your trailer have 5" tall channel? They started doing this in the late 70's. If you put your gray tank near the center of the trailer frame stress won't be bad.

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Old 04-16-2015, 09:10 AM   #5
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1967 26' Overlander
warrensburg , Missouri
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My frame now is the 1 3/4"x5" channel. I am leaning towards 2"x5"x3/16" tube. The outriggers and cross members are going to be made out the the same material. I will tap and thread a stainless countersunk bolt and washer to secure the floor. The outriggers will have a stainless bolt and nylock nut to secure the c channel and body. My gray water tanks will be located near over the axles with the fresh water tank near the front. Anything anybody would change or do differently?
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Old 04-16-2015, 09:23 AM   #6
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1981 31' Excella II
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Should work fine. Take into account the weight of the frame and other stuff you add to size axles properly. Beef up connections between the shell and the frame that were already week in the first place. It sounds like your outriggers will be a lot stronger than OEM. A perfect frame in my opinion would be one where the outriggers were connected with an angle and the c-channel would be bolted to that every few inches. I would at least put some load spreaders in the c-channel where it is connected to the outriggers. Maybe go with 5/16" bolts instead of 1/4".

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Old 04-24-2015, 02:46 PM   #7
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1967 26' Overlander
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great advice Perry, thank you. I will be ordering the steal within the next couple weeks. when you say connect the outriggers with an angle do you mean weld angle iron in between each outrigger? I would like to build this frame to outlast me. I will be remaking all the straight c channel since they were in pretty bad shape. As for my curved c channel in the rear it was split in two near the curb side curve. Should i just rivet the two pieces back together since that piece is no longer manufactured?
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Old 04-24-2015, 06:12 PM   #8
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A photo of the c-channel damage would be helpful. Yes weld something between the outriggers. This would be more of an issue in the curved areas. You might have to figure out how to bend something around that curve. Ideally, the frame and shell should not move relative to each other. The shell is really strong and will support the frame if the frame and shell are well connected. When a load is applied to the rear of the frame, the shell and frame try to move relative to each other. If there are lots of bolts, that can't happen.

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Old 04-24-2015, 07:41 PM   #9
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looking for frameworthy advice

Also, if you really want the frame to last, you can have the completed frame hot dipped galvanized all at one time. Then to overkill to the max paint over the gal with POR 15.
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Old 04-24-2015, 08:13 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pistonless7 View Post
My frame now is the 1 3/4"x5" channel. I am leaning towards 2"x5"x3/16" tube. The outriggers and cross members are going to be made out the the same material. I will tap and thread a stainless countersunk bolt and washer to secure the floor. The outriggers will have a stainless bolt and nylock nut to secure the c channel and body. My gray water tanks will be located near over the axles with the fresh water tank near the front. Anything anybody would change or do differently?
3/16" wall for the 2 frame rails and 1/8" for the cross members would work.
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Old 04-24-2015, 08:14 PM   #11
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1967 26' Overlander
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Here is a picture of the rear curb side c channel.

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Old 04-24-2015, 08:15 PM   #12
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Also, if you really want the frame to last, you can have the completed frame hot dipped galvanized all at one time. Then to overkill to the max paint over the gal with POR 15.
Or you can sandblast, epoxy prime, and paint the frame.
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Old 04-24-2015, 08:34 PM   #13
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Galvanize would work well and you would not need paint but I don't know how much it costs to do.

I would just make a bridge piece on that c-channel break and rivet or bolt them together. Maybe a U-shaped piece. It could also double as a load spreader.

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Old 04-24-2015, 08:43 PM   #14
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1967 26' Overlander
warrensburg , Missouri
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That's what I had in mind and probably bolt threw on both sides of that split as well . With the galvanized frame would I have to worry about a reaction between the frame and the aluminum belly pan? I'm sure someone in the Kansas city which is about an hour away from me offers it. I was thinking about just using POR15.
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