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Old 03-09-2016, 01:20 AM   #15
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1973 31' Sovereign
Middletown , California
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 424
It looks like there must have been water trapped in there to rust the frame member that badly! Was there a spare tire mount under there also? The damage isn't all that bad right there and could be fixed a couple of different ways. Is there more rust in other places on the frame? If it's roadworthy I'd use it for a few years and think long and hard before gutting the trailer.
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Old 03-09-2016, 07:24 AM   #16
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1975 31' Sovereign
Waldorf , Maryland
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Markjitsu, I'm about an hour from Fredericksburg. My trailer has the exact same layout as yours and mine is (mostly) gutted now. She's a very slow work in progress but I love every step of the way!
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Old 03-09-2016, 10:33 AM   #17
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Culpeper , Virginia
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Totally not camping in this thing. I haven't decided on what truck I want to pull it. 97 Ford Diesel with International in it?

I have about an hour on lunch every day to continue working on this. Pictures of the exterior (as requested) will be up following this post.

The Cancer on the frame. As soon as I can pull the floor up in it, I can get to that. The goal is to have a shell with an open floor so everything is exposed to the best of my ability. Then my first task if going to be taking a million pictures and sharing them with you all to get your feedback on how I should first tackle the repairs and or upgrades.

I also wanted to know, I did a search on here for "removing interior rivets". I've never done it before. Do I just drill into the rivet until it pops? A lot of the cabinetry and paneling are all held in by rivets, some screws here and there. Any quick advice or a decent link to a thread. I would think the search function would automatically link me to the phrase I was looking for. Sorting through 47 pages isn't fun. Will keep looking though.

-M
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Old 03-09-2016, 10:51 AM   #18
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1976 27' Overlander
Tampa , Florida
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An hour on lunch every day isnt enough for what you just described- especially if you're asking how to remove the rivets..... If you are ripping out the entire floor, you might as well be pulling the shell so you can fix the frame.

Not to discourage you, but this is a BiG job you should seriously think about before you go tearing that apart. Yours actually looks usable from your pics.

The red flag just went up when you asked how to remove a rivet, which is about as basic as this job will be. Gutting everything including the floor will open up MANY MANY more issues you likely have not thought about.

You can google your search topic by adding "airforums.com" to your search. i.e. "subfloor airforums.com", or "gantry airforums.com", or "shell off airforums.com"
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Old 03-09-2016, 12:33 PM   #19
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1965 24' Tradewind
1962 28' Ambassador
1961 19' Globetrotter
Mesa , Arizona
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A 1/8 drill bit good quality, several, and some pliers to unstick the parts that wont come out. Try not to widen the holes to much.

You are correct about sifting thru pages but it's part of it

As Mixter said,
"Airforums drilling out rivets"
"Drilling rivets Airforums.com"

Check out some full Monty threads here and the VAP on utube for great videos.
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Old 03-09-2016, 02:07 PM   #20
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Culpeper , Virginia
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Eh, I got this.

Not worried. I know how to take a rivet out, I'm just super cautious about this process and I will have a need to verify what I'm doing up front for a little bit in the beginning.
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Old 03-09-2016, 08:31 PM   #21
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Culpeper , Virginia
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Pictures of exterior as promised.
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Old 04-18-2016, 07:45 AM   #22
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1966 26' Overlander
Woodstock , Georgia
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I would not do a shell off unless you have a lot of time, money and patience. Tear out the floor where it is rotted and see what needs repair underneath. If you can get to the frame areas that need repair it can be done with out the frame and interior skins all coming out.
Shell off repairs and restoration are great,not knocking it. But it is a very big & serious task. If you choose to do it. good luck. But it may not be necessary to get this trailer to a workable and enjoyable one.
I personally like the rear bedroom models a lot.
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Old 04-18-2016, 08:23 AM   #23
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1965 22' Safari
Cumming , Georgia
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I am very new to the group. I, too, was a lurker and only recently found a unit that was not too big of a project within my price range. Therefore, everyone that has responded to you has WAY more valuable experience than I do. But this is my newbie take on your situation:

For what you paid, your unit looks GREAT! I would make it safe-- axles, electrical, plumbing etc.. and then use it. You will figure out your priorities and triage your to-do list better than you could ever without living it. Also, attend some rallies in your area. The community is wonderfully helpful! BEFORE you gut, take a hard look at the forums. Ever wonder why the for-sales are filled with gutted units? People get them, gut them and then realize that they are way over their heads in time and MONEY. Your initial investment is super-- kudos on the find! But you don't mention how much you are willing to put into your renovation. The expertise part-- you could probably figure out (again, the community is super helpful). Best of luck to you on your AS adventure!
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Old 04-18-2016, 11:31 AM   #24
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Woodstock , Georgia
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I had my first Airstream with absolutely no knowledge at the time. Flew up to Dayton Ohio from Atlanta and drove it back.
6 or 7 of us web seeking folks, started this forum with the idea of helping each other. It obviously worked. LOL
You can pretty much fix anything on your Airstream with what you find here. Just don't take every OPINION as fact..
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Old 06-16-2016, 10:31 AM   #25
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1971 18' Caravel
Nokesville , Virginia
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Hey Mark,
Welcome to the site. I am not sure how much help I could be, but I am in The Manassas area and have been working on a "Full Monte" resto-mod of a 71 Caravel. My best advice is Try to stay motivated and be really patient.

Bullit
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Old 06-16-2016, 12:07 PM   #26
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1968 22' Safari
Austin , Texas
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So I just dropped 3k on an airstream...

Mark,
My renovation took 2 1/2 years to complete and mine is 22 ft long, just as point of reference. We did a complete shell off,


Sent from my iPhone
David & Diane
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Old 06-23-2016, 11:14 PM   #27
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1976 29' Ambassador
Atlanta , Georgia
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You put a 1/8 drill bit on it and slowly drill through the head. It pops off fairly easily. Don't get too enthusiastic. Aluminum is soft compared to the bit and you could enlarge the hole accidentally.

Price seems excellent. I just purchased a '76 Ambassador for $3300. Interior is a bit more worn. Price around where I live (Atlanta) was crazy so I ended up buying one from rural NC. Much more reasonable.
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