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Old 02-01-2014, 09:33 PM   #15
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1961 16' Bambi
grass valley , California
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I was wondering who was going to get this trailer in Reno! I looked at it but the price was too high. I ended up getting a 1961 Bambi that is ready to camp in. Anyway, I am so glad you got this. Great potential and there are only about 30 of these around. From my research before I looked at it, you are correct, the closet, medicine cabinet, sink area are original. The burner area should have a stove instead of the burner. The fridge is original and it has a ice box in great shape! The trailer is meant to run on propane only without electricity - hence no battery or internal wiring. The front and end panels are a rare single ply - this is original. I was looking for something to use camping and I just didn't have the time to bring it to that level. It needs an new floor, some skin repair, new towing wiring, the dinette and bed area redone, new mattress and cushions, curtains, and other miscellaneous. It would be great if you could find an original stove. Don't let the list scare you off, it is a gem and it is going to be great with time, effort, and some funds. Congratulations!
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Old 02-02-2014, 11:36 AM   #16
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1953 21' Flying Cloud
Encinitas , California
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Here is a link to my shell-off thread. Lots of photos in the linked Picasa album.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f36/...sto-68769.html
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Old 02-02-2014, 06:01 PM   #17
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1951 15' Cruisette
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Star-man -- I looked through your pictures. Really great, clean work! Very impressive. Hopefully, I will be somewhere near as clean and efficient as you were in your work. I noticed you were using a fair bit of Vulkem reuniting the body with the frame on the C-channels, etc (my plan also). Just as a general point, what worked best for you from a seam sealing standpoint? We both have fairly old vintage Airstreams, and I imagine water proofing is probably an issue for both of us.
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Old 03-07-2014, 08:14 PM   #18
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1951 15' Cruisette
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Been a while since my last post -- but progress has been made! We've only had every 2nd or 3rd weekend to work on this, so progress has been slow. but it is a long term project.

So far, what we have done:
- Removed all interior furnishings and cabinets
- Stripped 90% of paint from interior endcaps

In the next couple of weeks:
- Remove interior skin panels
- Clean out insulation, etc

That should put us in a good place to remove the body from frame.
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Old 03-07-2014, 08:18 PM   #19
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1951 15' Cruisette
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Some more pictures of progress...
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Old 03-07-2014, 08:28 PM   #20
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What a great find! That really makes my duck quack. It's great that you're preserving originality. Have fun.

Poppy
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Old 03-14-2014, 12:31 AM   #21
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1951 15' Cruisette
San Francisco , California
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Continuing to make progress!

Started out with most of the paint off the end cap, but still some left to go:


Other end cap looked pretty clean, but some weird green stuff under the window that wasn't coming off and a lot of trace residue still remaining:


Started removing the interior skins. Amazing how clean/new the aluminum looks on the inside, given that it is literally 63 years old!


Strangely, the Cruisette only had insulation starting at the shoulder line. Is this normal?


Looking better:
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Old 03-14-2014, 12:39 AM   #22
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The insulation on my 1947 as shown here has insulation all the way to floor levelClick image for larger version

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Old 03-14-2014, 12:39 AM   #23
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1951 15' Cruisette
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The next day we got it stripped down to bare aluminum on the inside!




That's a lot of little scrapings... and this is after we swept most of the old stuff out:


Side view:


Great riveting. For panel replacements, is there some kind of a rivet position template to help get them this straight and even?


Some minor aluminum corrosion in here. Going to try walnut blasting (we don't want the interior aluminum to be a high gloss shine anyway)... but would 0000 steel wool work better?


Is this white patchy stuff aluminum corrosion? what's the best way to clean this?


Getting pretty close to lifting body off frame, which we are excited about. For an Airstream this short, would the "lift body with gantry crane and chain hoist" or "brace the body and jack it up from the frame" approach be better? Which gives better control for lining things back up together when rejoining body to frame?
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Old 03-14-2014, 06:50 AM   #24
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1954 22' Flying Cloud
Saline , Michigan
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We have done the brace and jack method and it was very easy. The wife and I did it in 20 minutes once all bracing was in and we're both in our sixties. As far as aligning when going back on- make reference marks with a sharpie on inside wall and on you c-channel in several places. Looks good so far, keep it going!!
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Old 03-19-2014, 02:12 AM   #25
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1953 21' Flying Cloud
Encinitas , California
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Great Progress!

As you saw from my photos, I did the brace and jack method. It was easy. I didn't have any floor, wheel-wells, or C-channels that got re-used so my alignment was with the step.

Just a heads up for when you replace the shell, make sure to measure the perimeter of the floor. It needs to be a smaller measurement than the perimeter of the shell at the bottom. If the existing floor is intact, measure it before removing it.

I really love your little trailer!

Chris
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Old 03-19-2014, 07:24 AM   #26
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Don't use steel wool on aluminum!

... but would 0000 steel wool work better?

Steel wool will leave tiny bits of steel imbedded in the surface of the aluminum. Galvanic corrosion will set in around each and every bit, and you'll have a real problem in a few years.
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Old 03-19-2014, 08:21 AM   #27
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1956 22' Flying Cloud
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Quote:
.. but would 0000 steel wool work better?

Steel wool will leave tiny bits of steel imbedded in the surface of the aluminum. Galvanic corrosion will set in around each and every bit, and you'll have a real problem in a few years.
we did use 000 steel wool and have had it 4 yrs and it did not do this. however, in theory its correct. you can get aluminum wool which would prevent any chance of it happening.
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Old 03-19-2014, 10:45 AM   #28
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Saskatoon , Saskatchewan
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You mentioned something to get rivet lines straight and even earlier, depending on where you want the rivets a "rivet fan" is probably the tool you want, it's a common aviation tool so I'd imagine aircraft spruce and the like would sell them. And yup steel wool is bad but the damage will only show up when there's an electrolyte (moisture) introduced later on. Aluminum wool, Scotchbrite pads or Scothbrite discs on a die grinder work a treat.
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