WOOHOO! After months of looking, reading about rear end separation (both related and not related to travel trailers
, jumping on bumpers, using big words like "rivet" and "pop rivet" with prospective sellers etc., I pulled the trigger on my first airstream today. I'm so darn excited...garsh...and I'm kinda assuming that, based on all the horror stories on here, that while it checked out great today, there will be a family of honey badgers living under my toilet seat when I start to remodel...
But...many, many thanks to all who post on here. I started about 8 months ago reading...have honestly probably spent close to 40 hours just reading through threads on this site...fascinating...it's kind of like Wikapedia, you start on "Bob Hope" and pretty soon you are reading about "how cold rolled steel is made"...cept here you start on "rear end separation" and end on, well, "rear end separation"
So. I think I did right. I climbed all over the trailer (mid-bath model with double bed in back), looked under the cabinets, pulled up carpets, jumped on bumper, ice picked the floors, waved the #7 chicken bones over everything etc. etc. I've looked at a bunch of Airstreams, and this one seems by far the most sound (I was most concerned about a solid shell/floor/frame/guts as I will be renovating the interior pretty much completely). Everywhere I looked there were no signs of water/rot, subfloor was sound etc. etc.
But, its 26 years old. So I've got a couple of concerns/questions, based on the photos below:
1. This one passed the bumper test, on both sides the bumper and shell move together. But on one side (where the water hose attaches) of the bumper the outer side of the frame is pretty rusted (the other side, per the pics, looks fine). When I poke through the rusted part it is solid behind, but should I be concerned or make this a priority to address?
2. No pic, but underneath this model the black water tank is by the axle and is enclosed in a steel (?) case. On this unit one side of the steel is rusted through, can I just replace the steel or does this "case" play some part in holding the black water tank from falling onto the road. All else underneath looks great.
3. On the top of the trailer, the clearcoat looks all splotchy, but the sides look great. Can I just strip the clearcoat off the whole trailer to make it look better, or do I have to polish the whole thing once I do that? Does one polish a mid-80's Airstream, seems like most of the highly polished ones are older? I don't care so much that it looks like a mirror, just want to figure out a way to clean up the top.
Again, many, many thanks to all who post on here...without this forum I would still be wandering in the wilderness :-)