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Old 05-25-2006, 12:18 AM   #1
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1970 27' Overlander
Conyers , Georgia
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 32
Off the deep end...

Well, we've gone and done it. 1970 Overlander followed me home tonight (or actually to my folks place. Shorter haul, and it needs tires bad).

About the only thing I know about Airstreams is that I like them, and they seem pretty pricey. I've had about a week of studying all kinds on campers on the web, done a couple of local inspections, and then this one popped up.

Good skins, only a couple of dents up high, some road trash dings down low on the front, and a tow-vehicle-turned-too-tight crease. Original interior, missing most curtains, although the fridge (ac only) and toilet are replaced with new, as is the air conditioner.

Some ills with the interior cabinetry, but not terrible. I do high end woodwork professionally, so no problems here, except I don't think a whole lot of the woodwork (which is true for any kind of RV I've looked at.). Thinking to keep it as original as possible until we know more about these things.

Still have lot to figure out, like how all the systems operate. Where is the inverter? Does it even have one? And so on.

The reason I don't know about the details on this particular one is that the PO named a price, and after making sure I heard correctly, I paid him and got it moving down the road. I'd seen enough to know we were in it good, and details can be figured out later.

Tires are the first thing, along with brake and bearing inspection, brake controller in the truck then on to systems testing and then maybe we'll start using it. Already bogged down on the tire thing. Too little sleep, I'll read more posts on tires tomorrow.

So I'm exhausted from getting it settled, but happy for now and looking forward to learning about it and getting her Bristol and on the road.

Hope to learn lots more here, glad to have found it (camper and website),

Thanks,

Rob
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Old 05-25-2006, 12:23 AM   #2
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1964 26' Overlander
1964 19' Globetrotter
Eastern , Washington
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The deep end is where the fun happens...

Congrats and welcome to the forums. You're gonna have a great time fixing that trailer and an even better time using it!

Now get some sleep!
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Old 05-25-2006, 03:59 AM   #3
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1978 31' Sovereign
Texas Airstream Harbor , Zavalla, in the Deep East Texas Piney Woods on Lake Sam Rayburn
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Rob:

Congrats on your new baby and your first post.

With your first post comes the distinction of being to access the "search" functions withinthe Forums - see the pull downs in the dark blue line at the top of the page. The search function is not very sophisticated, so you may have the ask the same question in various ways before you find many hits. It does not take long to get the hang of it, and I'm sure you will be navigating this information source like you were born to it.

For many of us working with these icons of americana has become a therapy - a very expensive hobby, but not as expensive as a shrink.

Most are in agreement here that ANY tire should be replaced at about 7 years of age...do your homework and get a properly rated tire - determine if you need a Load Range C, D, or E prior to going shopping for one. As a first test of the search function, read up on how important balancing the rotating assembly is....Oh, yeah, do you know how to locate the jacking points?..another question for the search.

Good luck with your porject!
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Old 05-25-2006, 06:21 AM   #4
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Welcome to the forums. I am looking forward to pictures.
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Old 05-25-2006, 07:37 AM   #5
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1993 21' Sovereign
Colfax , North Carolina
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackboat
Still have lot to figure out, like how all the systems operate. Where is the inverter? Does it even have one? Thanks,

Rob
Rob, the quickest way to find your Univolt (special converter for an Airstream) is to plug in the trailer to 120v, and follow the HUMMMMMMMM. You should find it in short order.
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Old 05-25-2006, 09:06 PM   #6
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1970 27' Overlander
Conyers , Georgia
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Thank you all, about to begin the search for tires. Got distracted today looking for interior decorations; still tired enough that I'm not quite ready to get dirty again.

Have learned Sam's club doesn't carry trailer tires, and I don't mean to be asking questions here, just sort of rambling. I'm sure most of what I want to know has been covered, just have to finish a drawing for work and then I'll start rooting it out.

Thanks,
Rob
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Old 05-25-2006, 09:40 PM   #7
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Rob,

Your Airstream will have a converter, not an inverter. The converter takes the incoming 120VAC and converts it to 12VDC to charge your batteries and provide control voltage to operate tha RV applianced like the refrigerator, furnace, water heater, water pump, etc. To find it, follow OL63's suggestion. You won't miss it!

Welcome to the Forums and don't hesitate to ask if you have any questions. There is an abundance of practical knowledge here.
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Old 05-26-2006, 09:18 AM   #8
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1970 27' Overlander
Conyers , Georgia
Join Date: May 2006
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Lew: Thanks, mistake in my terminology. I've done a fair amount of marine work, and am finding these a bit different electrically. Fortunately between boat systems I still have around, and my current job having piles of rectifiers, if the Univolt is dead or problematical I can rejigger the whole thing to my liking.

Lots left to learn, will hopefully get a chance to test power systems this weekend.

Rob
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Old 05-26-2006, 10:22 AM   #9
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1990 34' Excella
Parsonsfield, , Maine
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Tires for 1970

Quote:
Originally Posted by blackboat
Thank you all, about to begin the search for tires. Got distracted today looking for interior decorations; still tired enough that I'm not quite ready to get dirty again.

Have learned Sam's club doesn't carry trailer tires, and I don't mean to be asking questions here, just sort of rambling. I'm sure most of what I want to know has been covered, just have to finish a drawing for work and then I'll start rooting it out.

Thanks,
Rob

Rob,
I bought a new AS in 1972. It was a 29' dual axle and came equipped with Goodyear Travel Trailer Tires, load range C. I have used the same make tires and never had any trouble. Those tires were bias ply tires. Today I believe most folks are running radial ply tires. My triple axle is running on Goodyear Marathon Radial tires. Don't jack under the axles, they can bend, use the jack points under the frame close to the wheels. Or run one wheel up on a couple planks or cut off pieces and this will lift the other wheel off the ground. CharlieE
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Old 05-26-2006, 08:01 PM   #10
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1970 27' Overlander
Conyers , Georgia
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Posts: 32
CharlieE, Thankis for the input on the tires. Spent a couple of hours last night searching this topic. Triesd to get some tires going today, but can't find any in stock, or were priced high. It doessn't help that I thought tires should be about $80 each, and then for some reason I multiplied it by 3. $240 for tires? That's OK. Find out it's going to be closer to $400 because, obviously, I need FOUR of the things. HTH did I ever start using 3 aa a multiplier?

Taking that as a sign of my hurried mental state, I figured maybe I should give it until next week, and not many places are open this weekend with the holiday (forgot it was a holiday weeken too). Not sure what I think of the bias ply/radial thing just yet. My equipment trailer runs bias plys, and it often sees loads that exceed the weight of most airstreams, plus the trailer itself. Never worried about the tires much. All this research has me paranoid now. Don't want to wreck the camper; if i rolled the equipment trailer over, you probably wouldn't be able to tell it, it's ugly. Would like to keep my nearly straight Airstream looking that way.

The only tires I can get near the trailer are Carlisles, they cost more than the Goodyears, so I don't know. Will probably just go up there and pet it tomorrow, take some measurements, check the rest of the house electrical and daydream a bit. And maybe I'll get lucky and find the spring bars for the hitch hidden in there somewhere, otherwise we get to send of about $150 to Reese to complete the set.

Probably just need to let my mind absorb everything for a couple of days and come up with a list of what needs doing.

Thanks everyone,
Rob
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Old 05-27-2006, 03:29 AM   #11
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1992 34' Limited
Falls Church , Virginia
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Carlisles are AOK!

Rob et al -

Reading the post with great interest. I have SilverToy (Triple axle) and a 6x14(Double axle) covered Utility trailer. The UT runs on Carlisles since day one - they are ST rated. They track fine, they are the right size and can handle the likely loads at sometimes extra legal speeds....! I don't recommend that, but they did the job and are still in service today.

I DO keep them at max sidewall inflation pressure whenever hauling anything, period. I have been back and forth accross the US twice (ABQ to DC and back via JC!!!!!!) and have had NO troubles whatever.

Your choice, but I can offer that my experience with those tires was and has been fine.

Good luck with your choice!!!

Axel
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Old 05-28-2006, 12:46 AM   #12
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1970 27' Overlander
Conyers , Georgia
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 32
OH HELL, Went to take the family to see the new treaure today. In doing some searches on this site about how to repair stuff, I ran across mention of rear end seperation. Lucky us, hopped on the bumper and got movement. Found a gap I can see from the inside that I missed in two inspections, and my axle arms are about parallel to the frame with the trailer light.

I feel like the biggest idiot now. Gloating period ended about 4:00 PM today, and I'm not getting any happier. Thought the purchase of the trailer would help make some of our frequent traveling easier and more affordable. On paper, it seemed a lot cheaper than all the hotel bills, as well as more comfortable. Now, instead of being able to get out on the weekends to where I need to go, I've got another project, scope not yet known fully.

Obviously need to figure out what I've got here, but it's clearly not quite as good as I thought. I've only myself to blame, and haven't made it any better by filling the wife and daughter's heads full of plans for doing stuff, and then having to yank the rug out from under it all at the grand unveiling.

Added to this is that this was to fulfill some dreams we've had since college twenty years ago, thought we were getting there, and I flat out blew it.

So much for interior decorating for now (which we were having a ball with),

Rob
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Old 05-30-2006, 12:10 AM   #13
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1970 27' Overlander
Conyers , Georgia
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OK, feeling better; have a thread about the problems in the General Repair forum.

Not thrilled, facing more work than I had wanted, but we'll do it and get on our way someday.

Will now do the tires this coming weekend and hopefully get it home.

Rob
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Old 05-30-2006, 07:39 AM   #14
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1963 30' Sovereign
Des Ruisseaux , Quebec
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 37
Hi and welcome, don't feel bad you have an AIRSTREAM!!!! I will only require a little more TLC than expected, then you will have a beautiful piece of automotive history to travel in. Congratulations!
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