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Old 06-04-2004, 08:38 PM   #1
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Weight of Shell

I am wondering how much a shell weighs. Any data is appreciated.
I am inquiring about the shell of a 1963 Overlander, no roof a/c, stripped of all interior components, and stripped off the lower section of the interior skin.
There is a picture floating around of two guys carrying a inclomplete shell...if it's light enough, I could suspend if from the roof in my shop, instead of making a brace that supports it from the shop floor. 4 pulleys, 2 come-alongs, might do the trick....if i knew how much it weighs.
Thanks for any information.
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Old 06-04-2004, 09:32 PM   #2
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Just doing some quick math and guestimating I would 550 to 600 lbs.
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Old 06-04-2004, 09:48 PM   #3
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I looked up the photo...

I found the photo you mentioned in my copy of "Airstream - The History of the Land Yacht". The photo definitely shows two men holding a shell between them and apparently not overly strained by it. It might be a little shorter than your unit and it does have a few of the bottom skin panels out along the sides. The front and back windows are definetly in place but not the side ones (or the door either).

I have also read somewhere in these forums that people have been able to set their body back on their trailer with one person lifting at each corner. When you think about the fact that your trailer totally assembled might weight as much as 4500lbs and start subtracting all the heavy stuff that is now not attached to the body I would be inclined to guess that the 500 or 600 lbs might even be on the high side.

I like the idea of a pully system from above by the way.

Malcolm
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Old 06-04-2004, 10:17 PM   #4
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One 4 by 12 sheet of .032 aluminum weighs 22 lbs.There are about 16 sheets in an Overlander thats about 350 lbs.Add to that ribs, windows, vents, inside end caps,insulation and wiring.I don't think 550 to 600 lbs is unreasonable.I know I can't budge either end of my shell without a jack.
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Old 06-05-2004, 12:00 PM   #5
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Here is a weight calculator. Pulling form the top will work very well, I did that with my mh body. Actually I have wondered why I never saw a trailer done that way, maybe I will now.

John
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Old 06-06-2004, 02:32 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 74Argosy24MH
Here is a weight calculator. Pulling form the top will work very well, I did that with my mh body. Actually I have wondered why I never saw a trailer done that way, maybe I will now.

John
Most likely you will. I am considering running 2 ea. 2x6's along the inside roof center line. One to cover the two rear/middle roof openings, and one for the front, large roof vent opening. Then attach the lifting tackle directly to the 2x6's, pulling the ropes from the inside of the trailer. This way I can pull each just a little at a time.
Any drawbacks, or perhaps better ideas?
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Old 06-06-2004, 04:40 PM   #7
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Some lifting thoughts...

It seems like you might still want to cross brace the body from side to side closer to the bottom. If you were going to have cross bracing any way you might very well be able to just run your cable to the bracing at the bottom. You could create a y-shaped connection closer to the sides where the cross bracing connects to the side walls. You could maybe use a short piece of 2x4 at each vent opening to keep the cable centered in the opening if that seemed to be any kind of a problem.Malcolm
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Old 06-06-2004, 10:05 PM   #8
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I lifted with a wider setup than you are talking about but my body weighed 2 or 3 times as much (a lot of glass, steel caps, cage around the front and the floor was still in). Plus I had to go up 30" to clear the cowl and I wanted it nice and stable. For 600 lbs. a 2x8 should work. Screw it to the ribs, it will hold the board in position while you are hooking up and lifting. Make sure your hoists will be convenient to work with, you are going to have to be over/thru the shell to operate them. If you can park it in the building parallel to the trusses you can lay 2x8s across several of them. This will distribute the load and make adjusting to match the vents and ac openings simple. Don't use plastic coated cable to hang your hoists from, no matter how well you clamp it the cable eventually slips out of the plastic. I like chain with a split link or screw link.

IMHO the ribs aren't solid enough to lift with. It will put all the stress on a few points on the sidewalls in a direction it wasn't designed for. You want the attachment point as close to the roof as possible, it is going to have a fairly high center of gravity, windows are in the upper body and you have a roof but no floor. You could run cables from braces to the roof openings but then it will be like a big pendulum.

John
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Old 06-30-2004, 10:55 PM   #9
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Well, it's hanging from the rafters as we speak. 3 chains going up through 3 roof beams. I guess they're 6x10's or so. Massive.
Pendulum is right! it seems very easy to get into motion, which makes me think that it's not very heavy. I can not lift it by myself from one side, though.
I ran 4 cross braces near the first horizontal rib from the bottom, and ran some stringers between them , to stabilize the lower shell walls.
I think I will build some sort of support below next, and let it down on the supports, I am not comfortable just letting it hang there. It's really wobbly.
I will go and find some 2x6's and run them across, and then support the shell with saw horses. Then I can drive the frame in and out from under it if space becomes an issue.
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Old 07-01-2004, 03:47 PM   #10
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I don't know exact specs, but im getting ready to do a shell off right now also, I have a 1968 tradewind 24', I have been told that 2 people can lift the shell... I know you are asking for specific weights, and i wish i could give you them... But i'm just chiming in with a little information I have been given. Good Luck!
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Old 07-01-2004, 03:59 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uwe
Well, it's hanging from the rafters as we speak. 3 chains going up through 3 roof beams. I guess they're 6x10's or so. Massive.
Pendulum is right! it seems very easy to get into motion, which makes me think that it's not very heavy. I can not lift it by myself from one side, though.
I ran 4 cross braces near the first horizontal rib from the bottom, and ran some stringers between them , to stabilize the lower shell walls.
I think I will build some sort of support below next, and let it down on the supports, I am not comfortable just letting it hang there. It's really wobbly.
I will go and find some 2x6's and run them across, and then support the shell with saw horses. Then I can drive the frame in and out from under it if space becomes an issue.
UWE
Can you post a picture of the shell hanging, that would be way cool!!!!
Just be safe.
btw, what does UWE stand for?
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Old 07-01-2004, 04:56 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeepinAudiophile
I don't know exact specs, but im getting ready to do a shell off right now also, I have a 1968 tradewind 24', I have been told that 2 people can lift the shell... I know you are asking for specific weights, and i wish i could give you them... But i'm just chiming in with a little information I have been given. Good Luck!
I doubt that 2 people will lift your shell, unless you take everything, out, including windows, inner skin and insulation. i can not lift up the end of my shell, needs a floor jack to budge. I think 600 or so pounds is just about right.
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Old 07-01-2004, 06:11 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by upallnight
UWE
Can you post a picture of the shell hanging, that would be way cool!!!!
Just be safe.
btw, what does UWE stand for?
Uwe is my first name.
I posted a pic on my other thread, A63 for me, and now it won't let me post them here.
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Old 07-01-2004, 06:51 PM   #14
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Ya I just saw it. Pretty incredible seeing something that big just hanging there. Were you lined up pretty close when it came off the frame, straight up or did it swing?
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