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Old 05-22-2006, 09:40 AM   #1
65 Tradewind
 
1965 24' Tradewind
Cody , Wyoming
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Howdy...new guy bitten by the bug

Howdy to all,

I recently fell into a great deal on a 1965 24' airstream and am thinking of resotring it. It is in pretty bad shape but from what I see here and on the web. Nothing is impossible. These things are built to last.

I am looking for the, for lack of a better term, Bible on how to start restoring, where to start restoring, and better yet, WHY to start restoring. I think I know the answer to that but will take any advice anyone would like to hand out. Where can I find Manuals on:

What fits what
Electrical
Plumbing
Running gear

The whole shebang I guess

Thanks in advance for any advice or info given and please be patient with a neophyte restorer.

Best Regards

Dannear
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Old 05-22-2006, 09:46 AM   #2
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1964 26' Overlander
1964 19' Globetrotter
Eastern , Washington
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Hi and welcome. There is no manual. But this forum is a wealth of information on restoration.

Most systems in airstreams are basically the same model to model and there are how -to instructions on repairing all of them here. Use the search tool on the blue tool bar to help get started. Ask questions - we can help. Learn to post pictures in your posts..... it helps get more concise info about your issue across. You can buy repro owners manual from Helen Davis secretarial in OH - but they contain only basic info about your trailer.
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Old 05-22-2006, 09:54 AM   #3
65 Tradewind
 
1965 24' Tradewind
Cody , Wyoming
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Many Thanks

Hi Janet

That was FAST! OK so there is no bible. I was hoping some guru had taken the time to write something like a what fits what book. Anyway I am sure I will be up to my neck in airstream very soon and will be burning up this forum with rookie type questions.

I don't think the trlr I bought is in too bad a condition ...but it must be like peeling an onion.

Thanks again.........we'll ne talking

Rgds

Dannear
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Old 05-22-2006, 09:56 AM   #4
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1967 26' Overlander
1968 30' Sovereign
Vintage Kin Owner
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Mosheim , Tennessee
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Welcome to the Forums

There is a wealth of info available here in the Forum. Search and find threads on all of your concerns, and if you need an answer more quickly, collectively we can get you an answer. Dig deep into your pockets, fix the major concerns with having a safe operating coach, use it and most of all enjoy the Airstream Way of Life. My 29' Ambassador is not 100% restored, but I still camp in it "as-is."

"If I don't fix it right the first time, when will I have time to fix it again?"

Kev
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Old 05-22-2006, 10:13 AM   #5
65 Tradewind
 
1965 24' Tradewind
Cody , Wyoming
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Wrong terminology

Siverhobby,

Thanks for the encouraging words. Perhaps restore is not the right word. I don't want to bring it back to stock as they say. Re-build would probably be a better fit. You know fixing whats broken, making changes, making it mine I guess, but I want it to remain an Airstream and make er SHINE

I want to make it roadworthy again and have a nice, comfortable, well functioning, safe siver home to live in on the road to who know's where

Thanks

Dannear
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Old 05-22-2006, 10:30 AM   #6
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1975 31' Sovereign
1973 27' Overlander
1977 23' Safari
Palmer Lake , Colorado
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You ought to have lots of opportunities for people to drop by and show you a few ideas, being right there on the east side of Yellowstone. You can do anything, but having said that I have four rules of thumb.

Don't move the fridge.
Don't move the toilet or shower (unless you're redoing the holding tanks)
Make sure the floor is sound.
Replace at least one vent with a Fantastic Fan.
and
If you've got most of the fixtures out, it is a good time to find and fix leaks.

I even cut the bathtub in half in my Overlander (rear bath unit) and moved the double bed aft so I could get more counter space in the kitchen.
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Old 05-22-2006, 10:50 AM   #7
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1966 24' Tradewind
Albuquerque , New Mexico
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More Rules of Thumb

First make it roadworthy; tires, wheels, brakes, bearings. Replace axles if necessary.

Second, make it functional. Get everything in working order; H2O system, H2O heater, furnace, fridge.

Third Make it esthetically pleasing and pleasant to use.

Projects become longer and more expensive when we do step three first only to discover that we must rip out that which we have already done to fix some problem with plumbing, wiring, or flooring.
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Old 05-22-2006, 11:01 AM   #8
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1973 27' Overlander
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Quote:
Projects become longer and more expensive when we do step three first only to discover that we must rip out that which we have already done to fix some problem with plumbing, wiring, or flooring.
I have become very good at this!

Darn, how could I have glossed over the "make it roadworthy." Maybe I think that's obvious. First thing I do is tires, brakes, and bearings. But I have learned that it ought to be tires, bearings--get it home with minimal brake work--new axle, then tackle the inside.

The biggest mistake we all make as newbies is (IMHO) we think to ourselves, "well, the axle is marginal, but gee wiz, the PO got by with it so it's only a small additional damage that I'm doing." WRONG. The Airstream may have sat for years and the axles now are much worse, have taken a set, and now every mile is 100 times worse than when the PO was towing.

So you don't see much shock damage when you pull it out of the tall grass in the back yard, but very soon you discover that you have done noticeable damage and you can't quite figure out why. Duh. (I should change my motto to "Duh"... )
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Old 05-23-2006, 09:13 AM   #9
65 Tradewind
 
1965 24' Tradewind
Cody , Wyoming
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Good advice ........

Thanks to all the answers posted. I was thinking first of replacing the entire axle out to the lug nuts. I have seen complete axles sets on Andy's link here. This being a 1965, will I have to install some kind of converter for the battery vs AC electrics, and having said that is there a switch somewhere in there that I have to trip to run off of either one or the other.

I don't intend to move anything inside appliance or plumbingwise. I envisioned terrible nightmares, lack of sleep and cold sweats.

Good advice all around. Thanks again

Rgds

Dannear

Dannear ready,...Dannear started,....and Dannear goin crazy doing this.
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Old 05-23-2006, 09:33 AM   #10
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DIY Channel

Dannear...the Do it Yourself channel has a series which I think starts on the 29th about redoing an airstream...check it out and if you have a tivo get a season pass... I think it comes under CLASSIC RIDES....they talk about a different system every show....Good Luck
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Old 05-23-2006, 09:50 AM   #11
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1968 24' Tradewind
Eureka , California
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I started out with just the intention of uncovering all possible dead mice... unscrewing was easy... drilling out a few rivets-easy- and now? I'm smack in the middle of re-assembly.. but I'm growing a little concerned: I cannot hardly think of anything but Airstream! Seriously, I'm starting to think I have a real problem, like an overeater or alchoholic. I'm wondering if this obsession will dissipate over time or if it's here to stay- my family would like to know.
Anyway have fun, research, dream, make it safe and make it yours!
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