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Old 09-02-2010, 09:18 AM   #1
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Greetings and salutations to all!

Currently pushing past 52, planning on the big retirement at age 62.
Have a 40 foot endeavour sloop that we were planning on retiring to, but now plans have changed. Always thought that once the boat thing got old, we would switch to a RV, and have always loved the airstream look, the community, the quality of them, the history.
But the boat is moving on, and now have to make other plans.
But one thing I know is, at 6'1", I can not stand too small a place, and I like things my way. I am in the middle of a complete rebuild of the endeavour, so I can use my hands and brains....
A new airstream is out of the question. Cost to much for one, and sounds like the quality is not there like it should be. Besides, I would like the change of designing my own interior. If we should go that route.
Will be a few years from now before I go looking for that right trailer, but for now, indulge me in some questions please. There is so much on these forums, and I am going thru them a bit at a time, but have a few questions for those that have the time to answer them. And my thanks to those that do.

Currently our home has a long drive way, that is 9 feet wide, or more. But there is a 8'6" cover over the kitchen entrance that goes over the entire driveway. I see the specs of larger airstreams that say the hight is 9' 7" with AC but can anyone tell me what it is with the AC off the trailer ? Removing the cover would be a large hassle and drop the value of the house.

My plan is to go with a mid 80's model of later, 32' or larger. I would do a shell off remodel gutting the entire inside and replacing everything. New wire new plumbing, new pretty much all. I have read a lot of the threads here that have done it and it does't seem undo able, as long as I can fit it in my drive. it is 9' wide at first, but opens up to over 22' towards the rear. should be enough room.

Tow vehicle will probably be a ford F250 SD diesel, but there is a lot of time for that to work it self out. I also like the Cadillac ext.

I look foreward to this adventure even it if it is in 10 years. I work in the health care biz, as does my wife, and after 35 years of it, will be pretty tired of it all. During my younger days, I was a backpacker, and loved to drive all over the country. My older son has crossed the country multiple times.
While I will miss the idea of sailing off into the sunset, driving off into the sunrise is just as appealing, maybe more so. Easier to escape bad weather and hurricanes and the like.

Peace to you all.
Bob
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Old 09-02-2010, 09:46 AM   #2
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Hi,

I think you'll have a problem getting any airstream under your cover, even without AC. If you then say "shell off" resto, you have to lift it up a little too.

If you'd like any help with that restoration/custom interior, I'd love to give some time!
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Old 09-02-2010, 12:25 PM   #3
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Is there space (that you own) to drive around the kitchen carport off the driveway? Or is this your neighbor's space or blocked by something? If it's just grass that direction, you should be able to go around on a day when the ground is dry.
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Old 09-02-2010, 01:01 PM   #4
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My 1976 is just under 10' high with the air conditioner. 9' 7" might be about right.

The basketball hoop in the picture is exactly 10' high.

Click image for larger version

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Click on the link to see a picture of the Sioux River falls near my home.
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Eastern South Dakota is very pretty with hills, rivers, and trees.
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Old 09-02-2010, 01:10 PM   #5
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A comment on the size, floor plan, and materials for the interior design.

Airstream has worked out some pretty nifty floor plans over the years, that are convenient and useful, but also accommodate the weight and balance of the trailer, coordinated with water heater, furnace, batteries, storage compartments and such. Similarly, materials must be selected to be durable, and more importantly lightweight, as the trailer will be moving and jostling things around. While it may be fun to be creative, study of the various Airstream plans over the years will be instructive.

Personally, I believe too much space is spent on sleeping and bath space at the expense of living space on some of the larger newer models. Consider space allowance according to area that you will be spending the most (awake) time.

Looking ten years down the road, think about size, as it relates directly to fuel consumption. If many million newly middle class residents of China go out and buy SUV's, for example, or if the Middle East situation worsens, fuel will become very expensive over that time.

Doug
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Old 09-03-2010, 08:30 AM   #6
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Thanks for the responses.
The drive way is bounded on one side by a fence with a neighbor. While it might be possible to remove a 9 foot section and get in in our back yard that way.. it would then put the AS crosswise in the driive between the house and a garage apartment this is not really a garage and not really a apartment.... long story.
The house next door is a rental, so it is possible to do this as it is my fence.
The other idea is just to take the thing down, or make it so the AS could fit under. It would be very tight though.
This would be its resting space for the rebuild, and I figure it would take a few years. The last few might see us using it prior to retirement. But maybe not as those would be my big earning years putting the last few bucks away.

Doug you bring up some very interesting points esp about the fuel situation.
Not sure how that would change things except it would mean less mileage, but that shouldn't be to big a problem. It would be the same situation with a sailboat. You still have to motor, sometimes a lot, sails are built from petroleum, etc.

Weight is very important in a boat as well. Getting it right will be a challenge but not unsurmountable.
I envision a Airhead composting toilet, so no black tank.
The space then would be used for additional water storage, separated into house water supply and a separate drinking supply to one well filtered faucet.
I would forgo the usual range/oven for a induction cooktop and one gas cooktop. A on demand propane water heater. Since I don't have any expirence with a propane refrig, I would probably go with 110v/12v ones by Engel, one for the AS and one in the TV.
Most of our cooking would be outside on a Charcoal BBQ in good weather anyway.
I like the little Cobb, it would do.
Doug I agree that excess space for sleeping and toileting is a waste. More important to me is storage. But we will also have the Pickup bed with cover as well. A couple of honda generators will reside there plus backbacking gear, bikes, tents, tools etc.
Would be nice to have a small jeep 4x4 but not possible with a AS so will go with bikes.

Again due to financial constraints, this is a future project, but I will be on the lookout for a 30-34' trailer in these parts going for a real good price and if it happens then I can start on it earlier !

DAB SATX thanks for the offer !
Splitrock, nice looking AS !

Here is a old shot of the drive way on the left with a ford diesel excursion parked under the cover so you can get a idea of how large it is. The cedar shakes extend down below the cross beams.
I might be able to cut out the middle of the cross beams and build a supporting frame on either side of the of it. There are 3 supports mounted on poured concrete footings next to the fence.
Bob

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Old 09-03-2010, 08:50 AM   #7
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Wow, a entire post complete with a photo lost... whats up with that ?
Can't even remember everything I said now. But thanks to all for the replies.

I tried to post a image.. maybe thats why she crashed. I copy from now on ...

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Old 09-03-2010, 10:08 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobfnbw View Post
Wow, a entire post complete with a photo lost... whats up with that ?
Can't even remember everything I said now. But thanks to all for the replies.

I tried to post a image.. maybe thats why she crashed. I copy from now on ...

Try this link instead.
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Old 09-03-2010, 03:44 PM   #9
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Thanks Dave.
not sure why it didn't post, any ideas?
thanks
Bob
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Old 09-03-2010, 04:11 PM   #10
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You posted it as an image link, but it's really a web page link that points to the image. Picasa is funny like that.
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Old 09-03-2010, 04:23 PM   #11
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Lets see if this works better.....
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