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Old 11-17-2006, 11:38 PM   #29
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2000 25' Safari
West of Fort Worth , Texas
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Originally Posted by Aerowood
I fixed mine by throwing them in the dumpster
That may very well be my next step. I'm considering replacement doors instead of Tambore. (See, if I can't spell it, I probably don't need it.)

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Old 11-19-2006, 07:48 PM   #30
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1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre
1966 17' Caravel
Las Cruces , New Mexico
Join Date: Feb 2006
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Still another vote for tambour doors. The later ones used in our 1978 Minuet are still working well, open easily, don't interfere with the AC when open, etc., etc. The early AS tambours were backed by something resembling heavy paper. They started tearing almost before you got off the lot. The canvas backing used in 1978 is pretty sturdy stuff.

In the '79 Minuet, the cabinet doors are literally doors that open out into the living space. They are not as convenient as the tambours and no more sturdy. I do have one tambour in the '79 below the sink. This is a large door that slides sideways. To make it work properly, I had to shim the plastic foot down so the foot rode on the track rather than having the lower edge of the door ride on the bottom of the track. In addition, I glued a small wedge of wood on the back side toward the top of the door to stiffen the tambour where someone had forced it and torn the fabric slightly. A little silicon grease and the door works perfectly. I didn't have to tear the cabinet apart to get the door to function. It didn't help that the tracks aren't parallel to the point that, before the shim, the top of the door could walk out of the track when drawn fully closed.

After all this, I still prefer the tambours. A little care is all they really require.

1978 Argosy 6 Metre Minuet
2006 Toyota Tacoma
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Old 11-19-2006, 08:09 PM   #31
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1972 31' Excella 500
Ozark , Missouri
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 8
My attempted repairs

I feel your pain! Our '72's cabinet doors have fallen apart, and they're that kind of nicely grained maple-ish wood that can't be matched. As a quick fix, I used the new Gorilla-brand duct-tape on the back to piece things together for our upcoming trip. It's not thick enouch to bind movement as the door rolls up, and so far it's holding together pretty well (I used a number of strips running perpendicular to the material's natural breaks). This is probably a temp fix, but I can keep you posted on how well it holds up. The longer-term fix I'm planning is to glue muslin on the back with contact cement, which I'll attempt at the appropriate time. The tape soluition requires a bit of dis-assembly (taking off the roller guides) in order to access the back of the doors, and I ran into a roadblock with the doors under the sink (roll-up guides are horizontal, and I haven't figured out how to access the tracks without getting into the rivets). Most of the others are not too bad, but use a guide to align the edges of the material....

Rod & Karen F.
California ex-pats with too many projects!
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Old 01-30-2007, 05:50 PM   #32
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1976 31' Sovereign
St Petersburg , Florida
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 65
Originally Posted by LI Pets
Refinishing cabinets is the least expensive way to go to get a fresh look.

To get all of the color options available, prime the cabinets first with a Pittsburgh Paints Seal Grip primer. Then you'll be able to paint over it with any paint or color that suits your contemporary taste.

Have you had any problems with the paint cracking or peeling??

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Old 01-30-2007, 06:30 PM   #33
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1977 31' Sovereign
Riverhead , New York
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So far so good!
'77 Sovereign Intl 31' CB
WBCCI R2 Rep VAC 11411 Metro NY VP

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Old 02-14-2007, 08:45 AM   #34
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1976 25' Caravanner
1977 31' Sovereign
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Richland , Missouri
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 40
Tambour Doors

Tambour doors seem to stir up a lot of discussion I have them in all three of my Airstreams. As I am in the process of restoring them all... I have mixed emotions on whether to keep or replace the tambour doors.

I have repaired a couple of the tambour doors by replacing the canvas backing as discussed in previous posts and it works well, and as said before, clean the tracks, use silicone and they will work.

I have also purchased used replacement doors from Colaw RV Salvage COLAW RV PARTS & SALVAGE | WE HAVE YOUR PART! although the price per door is a bit pricey...

Good Luck!
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Old 02-14-2007, 01:42 PM   #35
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Sorry so late with this, but if it helps, maybe this will do some good. I just finished r&r ing the tambour in my 76 sovereign. I bought a full sheet (4x8), which makes a lot of doors. most are 9 inches by 23 1/2 inches. I cut them with my circular saw and had no problems. I bought the sheet (wood laminate tambour) from a company called click on tambour and then wood laminate. They have two sizes specifically marked for airstream. One sheet with shipping was a little over $200. But one sheet will do almost a complete 34 ft trailer. If you need any info on installing the tambour, it's easy after you get the first one done and understand the engineering. If anyone needs to know. send me an email at and I will give you what info I have. good luck ken
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Old 02-15-2007, 06:26 AM   #36
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1972 31' Sovereign
roanoke , Texas
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 13
I'm about to start a full replacement of all of my tambour. I bought it online for $88/sheet (4X8). I'm starting in March. I tried taking the separated ones apart and gluing together, but there had been too much swelling over the years and even they fell apart...quickly.

The tambour that I bought will need to be stained, but I am not a finish carpenter and do not want a shoddy appearance when I look around. I'm sure that it will take a little extra time, but these silver babies are worth it.

I'll take plenty of pics that perhaps will be helpful to someone....if only to show what NOT to do!

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Old 02-16-2007, 07:21 AM   #37
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1972 27' Overlander
cass , Texas
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Those stuborn to open was fixed by spraying a silcone lubricant on them. we fixed the ones that had fallen apart. We glued (gorilla glue) the individual strips and fasten with some heavy material, and added weight till dried. Be sure and keep it off the part thats in the tracks. I will see how long this works. I have a couple of more to do.
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Old 02-16-2007, 09:21 AM   #38
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1976 25' Caravanner
1977 31' Sovereign
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Richland , Missouri
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Tambour Doors Sticking

My experience has shown that the primary cause of tambour doors failing has been dirty tracks which cause undo strain on the "strips" when attempting to open and close them.

Another alternative to silicone spray is to apply a hard canauba type wax to the doors and tracks.

Good luck!


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