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Old 04-14-2013, 10:59 PM   #1
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1978 Argosy 30
locust , North Carolina
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Looking for first, how to attach cabinets etc?

So we are looking for an airstream. Wife wants big so we have looked at 2 sovereigns in 2 days, a 71 and a 74 I think...both a bit crusty and dusty. I have spent the last 3 hours researching tips on remodeling one. I cannot figure out how stuff is attached to the walls. I see cabinets hanging from walls so I know it is done. I know the backs of the attached cabinets need to follow the same shaped curves. Cool, but how to get them to stay?
Any suggested books on redoing some of the common problems? tutorials? The one we liked the best needed a good bit of attention in the bathroom.
Also, what kind (R value) would have been used in the walls/ceiling? Does it have any function?

I really wanted to attend the Spring Stream I read about here on this site but it woulda been almost 4 hours with a toddler that hates a car seat away to be able to ask questions.
thanks for any assistance.
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Old 04-15-2013, 12:06 AM   #2
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1971 25' Tradewind
Menlo Park , California
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We just replaced the walls in our '71 Trade Wind. The 1/4" walls attach to the sides of the trailer by fitting inside aluminum channel that curves to match the sides of the trailer. These channels are usually screwed into the inner wall of the trailer. The walls themselves in the '71s might be secured to these channels with a rivet or two at the top and/or bottom.

Mostly, the walls seem to be held in by what they are also attached to: a desk top, a closet top, something at the end away from the outer wall. Our walls all had special extruded aluminum pieces that slid over the straight edge of each wall. These had special U-shaped metal pieces that had barbs holding them to the wood wall and then locked the aluminum edge piece in place. It's hard to explain. I'll see if I can find pictures.
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Old 04-15-2013, 09:16 AM   #3
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Barbie, thanks. I'd love pix. We are thinking of selling our house and living in one for a few years. Trying to think how we can make it 'homey' like having a more normal mini kitchen like a house. I have seen pix online of people attaching stuff to the wall, I just can't see how to do and have ANY weight at all. thanks
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Old 04-15-2013, 09:19 AM   #4
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Barbie, I checked your site out too....do you have any more pix of your bathroom remodel? It looks nice. Did ya'll make it?
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Old 04-15-2013, 09:47 AM   #5
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Our "72 Sovereign has aluminum channel type extrusions that are riveted to the walls (which are also aluminum). Then cabinets, etc. are attached to them with rivets. In our remodel, we are attaching aluminum strips onto the backs of our cabinets and then riveting those to the walls trying to hit the aluminum ribs for more support. Nothing in our trailer will be attached to the floor due to the flex of the trailer when traveling. We saw at the Restoration Rally 2 years ago (now the Vintage Trailer Accademy) cabinets being attached to the walls with plywood strips that had been "kerfed" to bend with the walls and screwed in place. For attaching other things, you could try what my hubby calls "French Hooks" which attach to both the walls and the object you are hanging and then slide together. We used them to hang our window valances in place.
Trailers of this vintage, and even now, I think, have fiberglass insulation in them. Mice can be a problem (our trailer had had a number of them at one time but not by the time we bought it) tunneling in the walls. Fun! There are many threads on the forums if you do some searching on some pretty extensive remodels done. Ours is one in process: Little Girl Refurb.
We have read and continue to read extensively about others ideas and remodels, trials and tribulations, for ideas. It has helped us immensely. Just due to the age of the trailers you are looking at, you will probably have to replace axles, floors might need to be redone because of rot. It's all do-able!
Good luck in your search!

Kay
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Old 04-15-2013, 11:47 AM   #6
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The overheads are attached at the bottom with an angled "C" channel secured to the walls with #8 panhead screws and a few rivets. The top of the cabinet face is attached via bent strip of aluminum sheet screwed to ceiling and the cabinet frame. This method of attachment allows some movement of the cabinets while being towed so that they don't rip out of the walls.
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Old 04-15-2013, 01:27 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minno View Post
Our "72 Sovereign has aluminum channel type extrusions that are riveted to the walls (which are also aluminum). Then cabinets, etc. are attached to them with rivets. In our remodel, we are attaching aluminum strips onto the backs of our cabinets and then riveting those to the walls trying to hit the aluminum ribs for more support. Nothing in our trailer will be attached to the floor due to the flex of the trailer when traveling. We saw at the Restoration Rally 2 years ago (now the Vintage Trailer Accademy) cabinets being attached to the walls with plywood strips that had been "kerfed" to bend with the walls and screwed in place. For attaching other things, you could try what my hubby calls "French Hooks" which attach to both the walls and the object you are hanging and then slide together. We used them to hang our window valances in place.
Trailers of this vintage, and even now, I think, have fiberglass insulation in them. Mice can be a problem (our trailer had had a number of them at one time but not by the time we bought it) tunneling in the walls. Fun! There are many threads on the forums if you do some searching on some pretty extensive remodels done. Ours is one in process: Little Girl Refurb.
We have read and continue to read extensively about others ideas and remodels, trials and tribulations, for ideas. It has helped us immensely. Just due to the age of the trailers you are looking at, you will probably have to replace axles, floors might need to be redone because of rot. It's all do-able!
Good luck in your search!

Kay
Thanks...I have used french cleats on two different home remodels. I like them, but then how would the initial receiving cleat be attached. I can't find pix of anyone attaching to the walls.

I hadn't thought of the axles...is that a costly repair? and are there signs to know they need replacing?

My wife wants to go make an offer on one we saw the other day but I am a bit more slow to agree.
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Old 04-15-2013, 02:11 PM   #8
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Quote:
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Barbie, I checked your site out too....do you have any more pix of your bathroom remodel? It looks nice. Did ya'll make it?
Yep, we made did the bathroom woodwork, including the shower pan, entirely from scratch.

I'll get some inside the cabinet pictures up in a day or two. Life's a bit hectic at the moment.
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Old 04-15-2013, 03:19 PM   #9
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1972 31' Sovereign
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Ummm, lets see: axles. Not quite my area of expertise except to know that they're probably worn out by now. I know if you jack your trailer up off the ground and the axles don't drop, it's time for new ones. You can also look at where the trailer edge is in relation to the rims. If the rims are partly covered by the side of the trailer, you probably need new axles. Ours were about a third to a half covered when we bought the trailer. New axles brought it up to the top of the rims or so. We bought ours from Inland RV. They came with shocks attached. Cost was in the 2 grand range for us. One of the more expensive things. Others have gotten them cheaper, depends on where you go. Ours still towed wonderfully before the axles (we towed it home from Mississippi to Minnesota on old axles, with car tires on it, and rear floor essentially gone and you wouldn't have known it by the way she towed). So it may not necessarily be something you have to do right away. Others will probably chime in with a lot more wisdom than I have on the subject.

Kay
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