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Old 10-04-2010, 01:57 PM   #1
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Buck riveting in Austin, TX

Hello all,
I know there are quite a few Airstream folks in the Austin area and I am looking for someone that has a buck rivet setup. I just picked up a 1948 Boles Aero and there are a few missing rivets along the base where the frame meets the skin.

Ideally I would haul my trailer over to your place when you're working, we could drop some rivets (there are about 15-20) and I could compensate with my time/skill or otherwise. I haven't used a riveter but am good with the hands and could probably figure it out quickly. Thanks!
-Blake
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Old 10-04-2010, 03:08 PM   #2
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When my riveter gear is returned, you'd be welcome to use my tools and I could run you through it and buck for you.

I should have it back in the next few weeks - I'll make a note and PM you when I do.

Advantage: I can come to you.
Disadvantage: you'll have to wait until my friend is done - he's working on an aircraft.
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Old 10-04-2010, 04:06 PM   #3
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1971 21' Globetrotter
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Hi Dave,

I am new here as well and in the process of renovating my '71 Globetrotter. I am also somwhat new to Austin, having moved from Dallas. Are there any places in Austin that you have found to be helpful in working on your airstream (i.e., aluminum, rivets, other misc. items). Thanks for your input!

Paul
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Old 10-04-2010, 05:36 PM   #4
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Hi Paul...

Basically, no. I have found Metals4u (three or four locations around the area) good for buying alclad and other sheet metals and box section steel for frame repair. The Airstream dealer in Kyle (south of Austin) has a very poor reputation for both work and price. On the upside there are some fun and knowledgeable locals who would be happy to help you out! If you ever need help with something, I'd be interested, or could point you to someone if it's an area I am less skilled in.

Hope this helps.
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Old 10-04-2010, 05:45 PM   #5
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Check the aircraft folks

Suggest you get in touch with the local chapter of the Experimental Aircraft Association www.EAA.org

Someone in that group is bound to be doing some sheet metal work and will have the tools and skills. They tend to be friendly.
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Old 10-04-2010, 08:49 PM   #6
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1971 21' Globetrotter
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Thanks Dave and Mimiandrews for the information! It is good to know I can get some alclad here for the couple of panels I need to replace and talk to people who can teach me how to do the riveting etc. I need to load up on some clecos too.

Right now I am in the process of replacing the subfloor and also came across and interesting possibility. My 71 GT has a wet bathroom and I want to modify to create a small shower area. I have access to a bathroom from a 70 International with a small tub/shower. I know I would loose closet space, but I wonder if this would fit? Thanks!
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Old 10-04-2010, 09:23 PM   #7
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Lots of great Airstream folks in the Austin and San Antonio area. Look 'em up here. If it does not work...and your passing the DFW area...stop by I have everything you'd need

oops.....I just re read your location....Austin...Colorado. Well, it was a good thought.

oops again....the thread says Austin.....Texas. I am SO confused.
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Old 10-04-2010, 09:44 PM   #8
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A friend of our in Georgetown is do the same thing with a vintage Airstream. You might contact him and compare notes. His name is Ken.

k.h.sands@verizon.net
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Old 10-04-2010, 09:53 PM   #9
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"Buck Rivet" - great rodeo name.
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Old 10-04-2010, 11:12 PM   #10
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You might want to consider a different approach. The meeting point where the aluminum skin meets the iron frame on a Boles is a weak point resulting in dissimilar metals corrosion. I had some damage on both my '48 and '49 Boles Aeros. To help prevent any further damage I removed the rivets entirely, added a thin rubber membrane barrier between the skin and frame, and refastened with 10-24 x 3/4 truss phillips stainless steel machine screws with SS nylock nuts and SS washers. There is very little reaction between SS and aluminum, unlike between aluminum and iron. Aluminum rivets would still react with the iron frame and spread the corrosion to the skin even with a barrier between the skin and frame. The nice thing is that it takes no special tools other than a drill. I repaired one section at a time to reduce the possibility of movement between the shell and frame.
Feel free to PM me if you have any questions about my experiences. I think the Boles Aeros are exceptional trailers.
Sam
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Old 10-04-2010, 11:17 PM   #11
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1971 21' Globetrotter
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Thanks to everyone's responses. To make things more complicated, I actually live in Plano, but work in Austin and my AS is at a friend's house in Drippin Springs. The good news is that I can meet AS folks either in Dallas or Austin!
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Old 10-05-2010, 11:43 AM   #12
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Sam-
Great idea. I was thinking about that approach, but thought the buck rivets would suffice. I got lucky and found a gutted but structural fantastic trailer as I think it's been sitting in the California desert for most of its 60 years. I was wondering about how stainless steel and aluminum interface. Very good to know there.

I'm also painting the frame and was wondering how I would get access to that section of it. Regardless, there are some other missing rivets and a number of random holes that have been drilled in my trailer. I assume a buck rivet is the easiest way to plug a hole?

Thanks for the input. I knew there would be some kind folks in the Austin area.
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Old 10-06-2010, 10:23 AM   #13
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PS - Do keep me posted Dave. I appreciate the offer.
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