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Old 11-09-2005, 07:47 AM   #1
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Question DC Wiring Problem? - "77 Argosy, 24'

We have put a deposit on a '77 Argosy - our first trailer! It is in A-1 condition in the interior, no dents, new ref, new AC, new hot wtr heater, new upholstery & carpet, all well done. It has the layout we like with the rear bath, no sags, paint in usable condition. Our question is that wiring issues keep popping up when we look at it. Tail light wouldn't work, then vent & light over stove, then the electric hitch. When the ref was installed they ran a funky wire on top of the paneling from the rear to the ref. We're beginning to wonder if we are looking at a complete rewire. What will that entail? Is it something that a couple of beginners can tackle? Any "how to" books out there? Are we better off to move on now and find a better one? He's asking a fair price, and will not bargain. Also developed a leak over the window in the middle of trailer last time we were there, owner said it hadn't leaked before, and that we would have to take care of it. We appreciate any help and suggestions you may have.
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Old 11-09-2005, 07:56 AM   #2
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Here is a good starting point, in two parts: http://www.ccis.com/home/mnemeth/12volt/12volt.htm
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Old 11-09-2005, 08:02 AM   #3
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Tincanalley:

Welcome to the Forums!!!

What a good decision on your part to consult within the Forums prior to purchasing.

Please do a search on "Pre-Purchase Inspection" - you may have to do several, possibly use only a single word such as "prepurchase".

The "Search" engine is not very powerful, but there is an abundance of good info within the archives.

More important than the wiring is to be sure there is NO floor rot on the perimeter of the floor....be prepared to pay a premium for a unit with flawless floors (no soft spots or decaying plywood or OSB ANYWHERE).
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Old 11-10-2005, 07:05 AM   #4
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Smile

Thanks for the info. The trailer seems to have a pretty sound floor, we did notice a slight indent in the floor when you step into the bathroom. Doesn't seem to be soft, just a bit lower...maybe the way the carpet was laid? So you feel the electric isn't a huge drawback? Good to know for someone new to this game. We're taking friends that have a 25' Airstream with us this time, although they've seen it prior, it's nice to have 2 more sets of eyeballs viewing it. We printed the info on wiring and batteries and that will help educate us. One item mentioned against the trailer was it only has one battery - do you consider this a problem, can an additional one be added? Yes, we'll definately download the pre-purchase inspection information. Thanks for your imput!
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Old 11-10-2005, 10:09 AM   #5
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Welcome to "the life". Hope you enjoy as much as the rest of us.

Wiring gremlins were rampant in my AS for the first month that I owned it. The ultimate fix was a new solid ground connection. No real problems (at least electrical) since then. Hope this helps.
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Old 11-10-2005, 08:46 PM   #6
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Thumbs up

Thanks so much for the encouragement, what I'm hearing is that electrical problems aren't a death sentence.
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Old 11-10-2005, 08:55 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tincanalley
Thanks so much for the encouragement, what I'm hearing is that electrical problems aren't a death sentence.
Just so you know, when you are standing inside your trailer, look up at the center panel that runs the length of the trailer in the ceiling. If you remove that, 80% of your 12v wiring is run down a spar just on the curbside (passenger's side if it was a car). It is pretty easy to work with.
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Old 11-11-2005, 05:10 PM   #8
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DC Wiring Problem? - "77 Argosy, 24'

Greetings tincanalley!

Welcome to the Forums!

Quote:
Originally Posted by tincanalley
Thanks for the info. The trailer seems to have a pretty sound floor, we did notice a slight indent in the floor when you step into the bathroom. Doesn't seem to be soft, just a bit lower...maybe the way the carpet was laid? So you feel the electric isn't a huge drawback? Good to know for someone new to this game. We're taking friends that have a 25' Airstream with us this time, although they've seen it prior, it's nice to have 2 more sets of eyeballs viewing it. We printed the info on wiring and batteries and that will help educate us. One item mentioned against the trailer was it only has one battery - do you consider this a problem, can an additional one be added? Yes, we'll definately download the pre-purchase inspection information. Thanks for your imput!
Tail light problems aren't unusual with any Vintage Airstream/Argosy products as Airstream utilized a wiring schematic for the Bargman connector that is quite different from the current industry standard -- so if the connector on the coach hasn't been rewired (or if it was rewired to suit the previous owner's preference) all kinds of strange things can happen when the coach is connected to the tow vehicle (both of my coaches had to have their Bargman plugs rewired to the current standard to be compatible with my tow vehicle). The likely wiring schematic for the '77 Argosy would follow the schematic below:

http://www.airstream.com/airstream/p...lug1966-81.pdf

Problems with interior 12-volt lighting aren't unusual either. With my Minuet, it was a Univolt that was beginning to go into failure mode that caused intermittent problems -- once the Univolt replacement was on-board, it was more an issue of cleaning and resecuring connections at light fixtures and appliances.

If the Argosy 24 that you are considering is one of the rear door models, it is among the more unusual floorplans of the era. It was offered for a very short time, and was unique to the Argosy series -- one of the few floorplans that wasn't shared with similar-sized Airstreams. The two Argosy 24 floorplans can be seen in the scan below:



Good luck with your investigation!

Kevin
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Old 11-13-2005, 06:58 PM   #9
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Thanks to everyone that responded to our inquiries, we appreciate the help.We purchased the '77 Argosy and anticipate we will be visiting the forum in the future. Happy Trails.........
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