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Old 09-03-2018, 06:12 PM   #1
New Member
1976 31' Sovereign
Roper , North Carolina
Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 2
Images: 1
Blog Entries: 1
No Rush


My name is Dave. I just purchased a 31' 1976 Sovereign and will figure out how to post some pictures next. I talked my wife into buying it so that I can teach our daughter what I know about trade skills. She has taken an interest in tiny homes.

So far, we have not removed it from the owner's lot yet, but have disassembled the deck beside the camper so that it can be moved. We also managed to get some air in the nylon tires, loosen the lug nuts, raise the jack stands, roll her forward and put her up on blocks. I'm still trying to figure out what tires to put on her and we have not named her, yet. And judge me all you like, but I've always called them females because they are beautiful. I managed a campground years ago and worked in one for years. I've always wanted an excuse to get one. If all goes well, we'll probably buy a new 23 or 24' (dunno) International Signature in 4 or 5 years.

I love to hike and camp but my wife is not into tent camping. I'm hoping to do a through-hike of the AT when I retire in ten years and if life happens to be kind, she'll be pulling the new one up the East Coast...

Anyway, I'm not the most socially graceful but have learned to pick up on most cues. I am a 20 year veteran of water utilities, so I can answer questions about that, but think of myself as a lifelong learner. I'm least looking forward to welding on the frame, if need be. And most excited about incorporating lightweight composites and solar when the demo phase is complete. More importantly, I am looking forward to spending time with my girls, and increasing our core competencies!

Best Regards,

Mackeys, NC

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Old 09-03-2018, 07:29 PM   #2
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1986 34' Limited
1975 27' Overlander
Conifer , Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 4,580
Images: 1
Hello from Colorado and welcome to the vintage Airstream hobby. What a great new member introduction. What a great father / daughter project you plan to undertake. She will indeed learn many new skills and some project management.

I read here on the Forums that vintage Airstreams found in the lush, green, wet southeast or northwest are more likely to have moisture damage than trailer from the southwest. Duh! So be prepared for possible major repairs. As you well know, it is all repairable. Airstreams are not lunar spacecraft.

I have a 75 Overlander 27' I purchased a year ago. It too was a southeast trailer, but spent the last 15 years stored inside. It is in pretty good shape, but still had some rotted subfloor and frame issues in the rear. I've repaired all that now and have started putting the thing back together. I'll finish it this winter. Here is a photo of the day I towed it home from Louisiana.

Yes, learn to navigate these AirForums. You and your daughter will learn a lot about your Sovereign 31' right here. I'm going to go look at a 75 Sovereign Sunday with a fellow Airstreamer I recently met. It may have some frame issues too. We will do an assessment of it's needs.

Trailer tires last about 5 years. I recommend a ST (special trailer) tire; 205-70R15, load range D. There are many good manufacturers out there. You are wise to tow it home with new rubber. Go slowly and take secondary roads. Like you said "No Rush".

Again, welcome...

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WBCCI #8607
VAC Region 11

Link to my 1975 Overlander Improvement Journal:
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Old 09-04-2018, 09:23 AM   #3
1 Rivet Member
2004 19' Bambi
Houston , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 12
Images: 1
Hey Dave, I absolutely love that you are a Dad teaching a Daughter trade skills. I have always been regretful that my dad taught my three brothers about tools and not me. It certainly gave them an advantage in the world.
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