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Old 08-14-2007, 03:58 PM   #1
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1971 23' Safari
Keller , Texas
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Angry 71 Safari Wing Window replacements don't fit

Hi All, I recently became the new owner of a 1971 23ft Safari. The trailer was a family item and well cared for. After checking out the systems for function and getting her road worthy we ventured out on our first adventure. About one week into our travels I pulled in behind a semi going uphill while passing another semi. The semi infront of me hung the trailer onto the median and sprayed me with rock and gravel. To say the least we lost all three front windows. Both wings and the Center. The old Rockguard was so brittle it was destroyed as well.

I ordered new windows from Inland RV, and replaced the center window ..... no big deal. This past weekend I removed the old wing window frame 1) removed the tie bar (what an effort), 2) drilled out the exterior rivets for the left wing window, 3) removed the interior surround and 4) cleaned everything up.
Got ready to fit the "new tinted curb side wing" into place and to my complete surprise, *****. The replacement appears to be too small. In comparing the old and new overall widths , the new is about 0.5 inches narrower than the old in the vertical dimension. The old also has slightly more vertical curve to it than the old.
In land RV says there are ways to make this fit?? Returning will probably cost me a restocking fee> I already have a significant dollar amount tied up in these wing windows. (my fault just trying to keep as original as possible)

Help needed!! Please beware that what you order and gets delivered may not be what you need.
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Old 08-14-2007, 04:11 PM   #2
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71 Safari Wing Window replacements don't fit

I thought I would post a couple of pictures.
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Old 05-09-2011, 04:18 PM   #3
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Hi 1971 safari,
I have been searching for the same answer recently and came across your post. Sorry to see that no one has responded to your question, at least not here on the forums. I have a call in to Jackson Center, and am currently awaiting a response. Here are some pics of what looks to be a similar case. If anybody has some input here would be greatly welcomed ! Thanks,
David
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Old 05-09-2011, 05:17 PM   #4
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You must make them fit, as they are the only ones available.

Don't install the splice bar, then move the window a little further out.

Fill the gap between the front and wing windows with some Vulkem sealer.

That's about the only answer other than changing out the segment.

Andy
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Old 05-10-2011, 07:35 AM   #5
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I ran into the same problem except my window was already installed and the old holes were exposed. I shot flush rivets in the exposed holes to fill them up. see posts 84 and 84 of the thread below


http://www.airforums.com/forums/f416...nte-26902.html
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Old 05-10-2011, 09:36 AM   #6
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Hi This is 1971 Safari which had the original problem. I returned the replacement windows to Airstream in Ohio and sent them in the old window frames. They matched the glass curvature perfectly as there were apparently several iterations of windows. The old frames with new glass went in perfectly along with new splice bars. The glass ended up being smoked but they look great along with a new rock shield that is smoked as well. Call airstream they should be able to help you out. I was very happy I toke great care in removal of the old frames.

Best Regards,

Jeff
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Old 05-10-2011, 07:35 PM   #7
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Thanks for all the replies and advice so far. Still waiting to hear back from Airstream. Good to see your still with us Jeff, and that The factory fixed things for you. I will be sure to put some backup sheet behind the skin since no matter what none of the holes are going to line up. And in the corners there are a couple of holes that miss the skin entirely. Not ready yet to accept the vulkem gap by eliminating the spline bar. Not yet ! I think my greatest concern is the greater curve of the new window. How much does safety glass bend, and how far will the skin conform to the new curve before they deform and or stress the glass. Still open to more ideas and or reassurance to make this work.

Thanks,

David
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Old 05-11-2011, 10:59 AM   #8
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Hi David, I considered cutting back the skin about two inches to match the new window frame profiles using the Vertical at the window splice bars and existing opening at the bottom as a starting point. I was then going to add material to the exact window frame shape. This would give the appearance of an extra set of rivets down the side of the window, around the arc and top but keep the integrity of the shell and tie in with the splice bar for strength and support. The glass should be embedded in a soft window edging material which allows it to float within the frame. This should take up some of the pressure for a difference in arc. I hope Airstream comes through for you. I like to keep it as original as possible without filling gaps with Vulkem. Let me know how it turns out !!

Best regards,

Jeff
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Old 05-11-2011, 07:11 PM   #9
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Hey y'all, heard back from Airstream today and they pretty much said what Andy did,
( he is right a lot of the time ). I must make it fit. So what I have begun to do is flush rivet the existing holes @ the radius that the new window will not cover, and make backing material
secured to the shell to fill in what is missing. I will also be using some rubber type material, ( thanks Jeff ) 1/8 " thick or so to absorb the variance in fit to the shell, butyl tape maybe ? And of course plenty of vulkem. If things go well I will post some pics. Hope to get things buttoned up this weekend.

David
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Old 05-11-2011, 08:13 PM   #10
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I don't know if they are still available but tin can tourists had a pair of 70's curved front windows for sale. Tin Can Classifieds - vintage airstream windows - Powered by PhotoPost Classifieds
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Old 05-11-2011, 09:39 PM   #11
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71 Safari Wing Window replacements don't fit

I also have a '71 Safari and lost the curb side window in a similar situation. However, given that I didn't have the tools or place to try a repair job on my own while it was pouring Oregon rain, I took a deep breath and went to the new Airstream dealer in the area. They gave Airstream the trailer serial number when ordering the replacement. They did a great job with it and I'm not aware of any challenges faced during the installation. It looks exactly the same as street side wing window. They told me I had the option of either clear or smoke colored glass, I chose the clear to match the existing windows. We have had a very wet winter/spring and have seen no evidence of leaking. It wasn't cheap but my insurance chipped in to bring it to a tolerable cost.

Enjoy your Safari!
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Old 05-11-2011, 10:45 PM   #12
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Our Tin Pickle lost its streetside window while we hauled it home originally. We bought a window from Andy last year, but various other projects took priority until a few weeks ago. We then also discovered that the new windows had slightly different curves in the corners so that the rivet holes in the new frames lined up w/ empty space. We riveted in aluminum patches, and fit the new window in on top of those. Worked like a charm... we did need to very carefully fit the new window's straight edge; there were some slight irregularities in the new window frame at the corner so the dovetailed tie piece didn't tap into place easily. I carefully dressed all the mating surfaces with a smooth pattern file, checking w/ a bright light behind the seam until the gap was completely flush. Once this state was reached, the tie piece went on easily.

This wasn't a really difficult job, but it was definitely kind of nerve racking, as that window came in and out lots of times. A helper is essential on this task - thanks @webspinner!
- Bart
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Old 05-25-2011, 11:13 AM   #13
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Finally installed, and looks o.k. I used small machine screws to draw the gaps closed all around entire window frame, drilling new holes in new material as I went. Then my wife helped buck rivets starting from center top and bottom and working out. Every rivet has a clean new hole. 1/8" butyl tape worked great, a lot cleaner than riveting through vulkem. I was able to use the new spline after machining the dovetail that was missing on the windows mating surface. Thanks for all the input and guidance.

David
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Old 05-25-2011, 11:18 AM   #14
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Pictures have arrived...
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