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Old 04-10-2012, 07:51 PM   #1
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1978 31' Sovereign
Tampa , Florida
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Proud and excited new '78 Sovereign owner in Tampa

Hey there, first time, long time...

I should open by saying I've gained invaluable information here from you guys, so thanks.

We picked up a 1978 Sovereign a week ago and have been having fun since. I'd looked at four different ones and this was the highest price of them all. For some reason it really spoke to me though, and it was the one I ended up bringing home.

The exterior is in immaculate condition with no dents or dings in the skins and just perfect otherwise. The frame, axles, etc, are in great shape and we're so stoked to be the new owners of this 'ol girl.

We intend to halfway gut the interior and modernize it. I'm sure I'll be asking dumb questions along the way, I've already asked a few... heh.

Anyway, it's good to be here. Thanks again for all the info already provided.

Cheers!
Scott
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Old 04-10-2012, 07:55 PM   #2
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1973 25' Tradewind
Ringoes , New Jersey
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Congrats!

Congrats on bringing her home, now don't forget we need baby pitures!!! Nothing better than getting her home for the first cleaning/sorting out. Before you change out the interior, give her a weekend trip to feel out how it works for you, then you will really know what to improve (make no changes, only improvements) So, what upgardes are you thinking anyway? MPJ
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Old 04-10-2012, 07:56 PM   #3
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1977 31' Sovereign
Fresno , California
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Scott,
Congrats and welcome! Yes, there are a lot of knowledgable folks here who are incredibly helpful. Good attitudes too!
You must post pictures of your new rig!
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Old 04-10-2012, 07:57 PM   #4
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p.s. You need to give it a name too!
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Old 04-10-2012, 08:31 PM   #5
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Well, alright, here are a few pics of "Ethel". This name is subject to change but I found a notepad in it while cleaning up and on it was written "Don't Mess With Ethel" and beneath was a list of the items the PO wanted to accomplish.

The PO bought it 6 years ago with the intention of cleaning it up and restoring it, but had health problems that prohibited him from doing such. With that in mind, I thought it'd be good karma to keep her named Ethel until the restore is complete, and then, if we choose to, we'll change it to something else.

As for renovations, we're going to replace the kitchen and living room cabinets, do some tile work in the bathroom and laminate flooring, build a new couch for the living room, all kinds of fun stuff.

For now, I'm trying to ensure everything works as it's supposed to. I have purchased the owners manual along with the service manual and hope they're here sometime this week. I ordered a new PD9260 power converter as well. New tires and rims and started polishing as well.

It's got the dreaded double paned windows that will all be coming out (except for maybe the vistas) and probably put back in as single pane.

I called the locksmith out to try to rekey the cam locks and have been checking out appliances. Did I mention I've had this since last Friday? Ha! I'm a bit obsessed.
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Old 04-10-2012, 08:53 PM   #6
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1977 31' Sovereign
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Wow! After finding that notepad, I don't think you CAN'T call her Ethel! I think it's a great name. When people ask about the name, you can tell the story about how the trailer named itself. Some things are just meant to be, you know?
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Old 04-10-2012, 09:01 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mrs.Mod View Post
Wow! After finding that notepad, I don't think you CAN'T call her Ethel! I think it's a great name. When people ask about the name, you can tell the story about how the trailer named itself. Some things are just meant to be, you know?
I agree 100%. I hope to do her proud!
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Old 04-10-2012, 11:32 PM   #8
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1977 31' Excella 500
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Smile

I agree with the previous poster that said camp in it a few times before gutting. For example, if the copper plumbing is in good shape, no need to replace it. I take it the tambour in the kitchen is shot? Laminate flooring is a nice improvement and hopefully there are no rotted spots on the plywood. Rear end looks good and no signs of separation. It will polish up beautifully. Once polished, all you need is new beltline trim, a new tongue jack and I personally would splurge on a new zip dee awning. Perhaps buy a propane tank cover as well unless you want to buy new aluminum tanks to shine with the rest of the trailer. Once it is polished, those white tanks will stick out like a sore thumb. Perhaps a couple of fantastic fans too? Your double pane vista view windows appear to have failed which is common. They will look good as new once fixed.

In other words, welcome to the land of the obsessed where the bank account runs out before your renovation ideas...
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Old 04-10-2012, 11:45 PM   #9
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Welcome to the forum. We hope Ethel gives you many years of fun and enjoyment!
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Old 04-11-2012, 06:55 AM   #10
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Thanks for the warm welcome everyone! As far as my phrasing of "gutting it", I probably should have better specified what I meant. All the cabinetry and tambours throughout are in great shape. We're just going to redo the kitchen and living room cabinetry basically. The sink/furnace, the fridge/pantry and the living room "entertainment" cabinet. I'm a hobbyist woodworker, so I'm excited about the opportunity to do all this. The floor is in pretty good shape, save for the front right corner, which I'll need to replace. The copper seems to be in good shape, although there's an aftermarket heater, so I'm not sure the factory furnace works. It's largely irrelevant for us anyway, down here in Florida. The Term X add on should more than suffice.
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