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Old 07-13-2011, 05:03 PM   #113
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1976 31' Sovereign
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Krumkake, lefse, and kringle

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Oh my word Sandy,
It is a bit humorous sometimes to hear of other people's mis-fortunes with contractors because most of us have had the same problems! I had the same kinds of experiences with welders and plumbers too. Don't worry, It'll get done. It just might take a bit of extra effort. Krumkake can't hurt either!
Stayed up all night making Norwegian treats for the neighbors. I told my dearest the plan on the frame when he got up to go to work and he said "No way are we doing that to them." So here I sit with a kitchen full of tasty treats.

Went to plan B at that point. Headed out to the shop and started to work on a 75 year old oak teacher's desk I got over the weekend. I found some interesting anatomical drawings of the human species on one of the drawer bottoms and some not so nice messages for Barbara Smith. Also found a book report form and suspected the following conversation "Jason? Did you get that book report done?" said teacher. "Yes ma'am. I did " replied Jason. Teacher states "Then where is it? I don't have it on my desk." Turns out I have Jason's book report form and I hope she didn't do anything too drastic to him. Jason has probably been in therapy for years over that missing book report.

Got the desk all stripped down and set up for stain. Dearest came home for lunch and told me I could start on the Albatross windows while I wait. He knows I don't do sitting around very well.

By that time my tape/texture guy shows up and tells me all he is going to get a lot done. He worked about 3 hours and left. Haven't seen him since. He got about as much done as I could do in about an hour. Maybe I am too harsh but doesn't seem like he is going to get this done any time soon. I did tell him I need to have that room ready by the end of July-son is moving back home for about a year. He said "No problem." When I told him I needed to be able to paint this weekend he said, "No problem."

So please don't say "No problem" to me at this point. I just don't get the whole thought process of saying one thing and doing another. I have decided whatever he gets done, that is going to go towards what I have already paid him. Of course, my dearest is laughing his head off because he didn't want to hire anyone in the first place. I knew there was a reason I married him...he's way smarter than I am.

These people are giving contractors a bad name. We had another guy out on Monday evening to grind some tree stumps down and he, number one- came when he said he would. Gave me the quote. Told me he could do it later that day. Came out when he said he would. Did the work. Charged what he said he would. Did a great job. So I know these people exist.

I always tell people "Don't tell me. Show me." I think I should take that one step further and apply it to contractors. Don't spend a lot of time blowing smoke and making promises. Just do what you are saying you will do and I will pay you and all is well.

I have two weeks until my son moves back home, neice from Denver arrives, daughter and friend from St. Paul arrive, and last but certainly not least, two granddaughters from Minneapolis arrive for a week at our house. They are 4 and 6 and haven't met the words slow down yet. I also have to finish up the work for eight graduate credits during that time. Should prove to be an interesting week or two.

Who wants to bet I won't be parking that frame next door about midnight tonight? The treats are still fresh and by the time their two dogs get done, they will be so busy trying to figure out why their dogs are full, that they won't bother with that rusty heap for a day or two. Just hoping my dearest doesn't get too upset when the neighbors drop by. I've done worse....I bought an AS (the Albatross) over Ebay as my first Ebay purchase ever and then told my husband "Guess what? We are going to MN to pick up an Airstream this weekend." Amazingly, we are still married. At least to this point.
Sandy
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Old 07-16-2011, 08:54 PM   #114
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1976 31' Sovereign
1959 17' Pacer
1965 26' Overlander
Bismarck , North Dakota
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We called the guy who volunteered to build the frame today after waiting all week for a call from him. He promised us the last of May he would build it, we hadn't heard back from him other than when we call him. He tells us every week "I'll call you next week". Are we slow or what? Now he says again "I will call you next week." I told my better half that we wait one week and then move on. My patience is gone at this point.

Husband measured the old frame today to get some thoughts on how much steel to order. Any movement forward feels like a ton of progress since we haven't seen much so far.

On another note, picked up a used cutting torch from a guy headed back to Phoenix. He said he's been here four years and can't take the winters. Can't say I blame the guy but those summers there might be a lot more than I could take. Nice guy and hopefully the cutting torch works well for our purposes. More tools that will come in handy if we ever get the frame redone.
Sandy
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Old 07-16-2011, 11:29 PM   #115
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That's too bad that the guy doesn't call back. To me, it means he doesn't want your business and money. That is sad. I hope it works out for you. As many people as I've met needing frames for Airstreams in the last nine months, you'd think someone like Dexter would be building new frames for a reasonable price. Maybe I need to get into that market! Plans, fabricators, trucking/shipping....
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Old 07-17-2011, 02:30 PM   #116
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1976 31' Sovereign
1959 17' Pacer
1965 26' Overlander
Bismarck , North Dakota
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Taking the long way to see the USA

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That's too bad that the guy doesn't call back. To me, it means he doesn't want your business and money. That is sad. I hope it works out for you. As many people as I've met needing frames for Airstreams in the last nine months, you'd think someone like Dexter would be building new frames for a reasonable price. Maybe I need to get into that market! Plans, fabricators, trucking/shipping....
I have it all figured out, Top. You load up your family, tools, and all other necessities and travel the US making new frames for AS. That way you can use your expertise and see the country all while earning a living. If you decide to do that, put us first on your list and we will have the krumkake waiting.
Sandy
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Old 07-29-2011, 12:52 AM   #117
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Hi Sandy
here is a better shot of my trunk. Expanded metal is the grate like section in the pic.
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Old 07-30-2011, 10:18 PM   #118
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1976 31' Sovereign
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Thanks Marzboy

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Hi Sandy
here is a better shot of my trunk. Expanded metal is the grate like section in the pic.
So if I am getting this right, you made a new box in the area of the bumper and put a grate in it so it drains? Did you enlarge the whole area or just redo the design? I think ours must be different from yours. We are able to salvage the bumper but not much else off of it regarding the frame. Still waiting on getting the frame started...at least we can watch other people's progress and that is the next best to making progress ourselves. Our goal is to be out camping summer of 2012...or else....
Sandy
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Old 08-02-2011, 12:24 AM   #119
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So if I am getting this right, you made a new box in the area of the bumper and put a grate in it so it drains? Did you enlarge the whole area or just redo the design? I think ours must be different from yours. We are able to salvage the bumper but not much else off of it regarding the frame. Still waiting on getting the frame started...at least we can watch other people's progress and that is the next best to making progress ourselves. Our goal is to be out camping summer of 2012...or else....
Sandy
I did rebuild the trunk as mine was non existent. The only part that is original was the bumper. I took the opportunity to enlarge the area and make the trunk section removable to do repairs or better access to the rear of the trailer if needed
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Old 08-03-2011, 09:21 AM   #120
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1976 31' Sovereign
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Wonder if that would work on a 76?

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I did rebuild the trunk as mine was non existent. The only part that is original was the bumper. I took the opportunity to enlarge the area and make the trunk section removable to do repairs or better access to the rear of the trailer if needed
I am curious if that would work on our 76 Sovereign? Might be worth exploring anyway. Thanks for that info and hopefully we will get moving on our frame before winter. Good news is my husband went over to look at steel this morning for the frame and our axles are on the way.
Sandy
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Old 08-04-2011, 08:19 AM   #121
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Hi there,

Speaking of the back end of 76 Sovereigns... has anyone given any thought to any re-design that might help eliminate future leaks? I suspect this is a common problem with our 'habit'...

The old floor along the back side was the most rotted out on my 76, and the frame rails in that same area were in the worse shape of any other part of the frame. From other threads it seems apparent that the factory design encourages leaks or water to funnel under the shell.

My frame is off, all covered with POR 15 and just waiting for some new outriggers to show up before I can begin to put things back together... so now is the time for me to start thinking about this. I have to replace the rear hold down plate that is at the center of that back wall, it was so rusted out from past leaks it couldn't be salvaged.

Thoughts?

Thanks,
Pete
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Old 08-04-2011, 11:22 AM   #122
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1976 31' Sovereign
1959 17' Pacer
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Bismarck , North Dakota
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Ideas...

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Hi there,

Speaking of the back end of 76 Sovereigns... has anyone given any thought to any re-design that might help eliminate future leaks? I suspect this is a common problem with our 'habit'...

The old floor along the back side was the most rotted out on my 76, and the frame rails in that same area were in the worse shape of any other part of the frame. From other threads it seems apparent that the factory design encourages leaks or water to funnel under the shell.

My frame is off, all covered with POR 15 and just waiting for some new outriggers to show up before I can begin to put things back together... so now is the time for me to start thinking about this. I have to replace the rear hold down plate that is at the center of that back wall, it was so rusted out from past leaks it couldn't be salvaged.

Thoughts?

Thanks,
Pete
Hello Pete,
Our entire frame was pretty much shot so we are starting from the ground up. My husband's welding instructor is coming out today to take a look at the situation and the steel will be here in about a week or two. We have had all of our outriggers here since last fall because we foolishly thought we could find someone to weld it up. What a dreamer I was.

I would like to incorporate some of the great ideas I have seen on the Forums to our little project too. It always is a question because sometimes the ideas on done on trailers that are of a different year so some will work and some won't. Of course, I have been accused of having way too many ideas....that accusation is completely false of course.

Some people on the Forums have come up with some ideas on how to fix the infamous leak situation and we have saved some of those ideas. I think the real fix will be when we start reconstructing. Some things can be figured out until you get into it. I think the Forums are a great place to look for suggestions and people are really great to help with questions.

You seem to have made considerable progress on your trailer and so will likely be done before we will. My husband is going to work all winter on the interior rebuilding using the old stuff only as template material. No more plastic and vinyl for us. We survived the 70's once already so that was enough.

I keep watching the Forums for more ideas and have much of my interior upholstery and curtain fabric ready for the interior to be done. I am ready and just waiting on that durn frame to be fixed so we can feel we can move forward. Good news is that the Albatross now has an almost completed Rookery to go into once the frame is completed. A little progress is a good thing even if it isn't on the AS just yet.
Sandy
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Old 08-18-2011, 08:51 PM   #123
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We finally got our steel today for our rebuild. Our axles are supposed to be here but we haven't seen them yet. I can't really imagine getting both the steel and the axles and being ready to go. Wow.... Dearest husband has been out in the Rookery since he got home caressing the steel and imagining what he might be able to do once the axles are delivered. I can see progress for the first time in a long, long time. Yippee!!
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Old 08-18-2011, 09:00 PM   #124
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That's encouraging news! Hope your husband enjoys making a new frame. Looking for some progress pics....
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Old 08-18-2011, 09:05 PM   #125
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Cool.. good luck on the frame... Thats some serious fun
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Old 08-18-2011, 09:32 PM   #126
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Hoping for fun

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Cool.. good luck on the frame... Thats some serious fun
Thanks for the encouragement. I hope he doesn't hurt himself, start a fire, or have a stroke moving those long, long pieces. Stay tuned on that front and I will post pictures once we have more than a pile of steel and no axles.
Sandy
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