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Old 01-24-2006, 06:38 PM   #1
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1968 30' Sovereign
Chico , California
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Question Help! I need advice on fixing a big dent.

Hello, fellow airstreamers: I recently acquired a 1968 Land Yaght Sovereign in very good condition. The body was perfectly straight until last week when a well drilling company doing work on a water system nearby had a piece of equipment break, sending a large piece of flying metal into the top, front curve of my trailer! The dent is about 2 feet across, centered on a longitudinal seam. It is relatively shallow and does no have any creases. I have spoken with every body shop and RV repair shop in my area (chico, CA) and no one has a clue how to fix this,..in fact, i;'ve been told by more than one party that it simply can't be fixed. Any information to the contrary would be appreciated. If it can't be fixed, I need to attach a value to the damage. In terms of a straight vintage airstream that is no longer straight, what might that be? Any info much appreciated. Thank-you
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Old 01-24-2006, 06:46 PM   #2
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1993 21' Sovereign
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Welcome to the forums, I wish your first post could be about a happier event.
If you can't use a large suction cup to pull the dent out (doubtful, from your description), you will need to get the damaged segments replaced. You can go to Inland RV's website, (www.inlandrv.com) and check the prices they have on their individual segments. Note the price does not include installation.
There are several RV shops in your general area that can install the segments for you, although it is an expensive job.
Good luck with it.
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Old 01-24-2006, 06:47 PM   #3
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big dent

Hi Deborah, my husband fixed a dent on our 1969 tradewind, believe it or not with a bathroom plunger. It's worth a try. Good luck
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Old 01-24-2006, 07:00 PM   #4
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Deborah,

The best guy in the world to help you is Kent White. He does aircraft restorations and he teaches courses in how to build anything out of aluminum. He is a short distance from you in Nevada City.

He may not be able to do the work himself, but he could direct to to a local aircraft repair shop that could do the job right.

Forget going to a body shop. Aircraft mechanics have all the right tools.

Here's his website: http://metal-working.com/index.php
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Old 01-24-2006, 07:16 PM   #5
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Harbor Freight

Go to www.harborfreight.com and search keyword suction. Try one of these, as I have and they work pretty well. Good luck.

Rob
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Old 01-24-2006, 07:41 PM   #6
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I hope Campcollector chimes in here....he had to fix his brand new trailer after a tree fell on it while they were sleeping in it. Lawncondo had a neighbor trim a tree onto her trailer.

As far as the value of your trailer you can go to www.vintageairstream.com . He has a pretty extensive list of how to price a vintage airstream based on what it has or has wrong with it.
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Old 01-24-2006, 09:56 PM   #7
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Cool Just thinking legally......

Hope you are charging the well drilling company for all the repairs.....

Sorry, my former insurance claim/lawsuit/damages brain cell just kicked in.
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Old 01-24-2006, 10:52 PM   #8
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You say the dent is centered around a segment split line. If the suck cup does not do the job you might try the glued in place hooks like they take dents out of cars with. You would have to cement a number of them centered around the middle of the dent and then make a rig or park the trailer close to something big that you could attach a line to and put a pulley system on to slowly pull out the dent as you carefully pound with a rubber mallet around the edge of the dent. If that fails you might try drilling out a numbr of rivets at the segment edge and put some wood screw hooks in them and then pull with pulleys as above. Then put the rivets back in using Olympic rivets. Alot depends on if there was any metal stretching that occurred when the dent was made. If the metal stretched nothing will get the dent out. I do not believe there are any interior ribs in that area so I do not think you can push from the inside.
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Old 01-25-2006, 05:50 AM   #9
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I have to agree with Silver 67. Go get the estimates to replace the panels and present the bill to the drilling company's insurance company. Then go have your trailer repaired with new panels. That's why they have insurance.

Roger
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Old 01-25-2006, 05:58 AM   #10
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Ding King also

I used the Ding King as well on dents - it works well on Airstreams, not on Argosys as the paint the Argosy pulls off before the dent pops. I'd get a panel repair estimate still and present it to the well driller too...and if you just decide to pull the dents, you've got something in your pocket for the damage they did!

Rob
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Old 05-28-2008, 11:30 AM   #11
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Wow, this is a two-year old thread. I just started a thread about a dent in my Bambi and was interested to see the replies on this one.

So, how did this one work out?
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Old 05-28-2008, 12:52 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muddy Waters
Wow, this is a two-year old thread. I just started a thread about a dent in my Bambi and was interested to see the replies on this one.

So, how did this one work out?
We don't know, the person that started the thread never came back.
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Old 05-28-2008, 02:00 PM   #13
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Just emailed her to ask. We'll see if the address is current.
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Old 05-28-2008, 02:26 PM   #14
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Basketball

Hey Terry, was it you or someone else who used an underinflated basketball to push out a dent from the inside?

Paula
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