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Old 02-07-2008, 05:16 PM   #1
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Panel Replacement for a Small Gouge

My 6 month old A/S was hit while in storage and suffered a small but noticeable gouge. The other guy's insurance will pay for the repairs. I would like my A/S back like it was, but am I asking for more troubles having the panel replaced? I bought my A/S from one of the larger dealers, who has given me as estimate for making the repairs. Can a dealer do the same work as the factory? Any thoughts?
Ozzieboy
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Old 02-07-2008, 05:31 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ozzieboy
My 6 month old A/S was hit while in storage and suffered a small but noticeable gouge. The other guy's insurance will pay for the repairs. I would like my A/S back like it was, but am I asking for more troubles having the panel replaced? I bought my A/S from one of the larger dealers, who has given me as estimate for making the repairs. Can a dealer do the same work as the factory? Any thoughts?
Ozzieboy
When you say the factory, do you mean the production or service departments.

If you want the panel buck riveted, as it was built, you must remove some of the inside.

If you want the Airstream service department to change the panel, they will use Olympic rivets.

A dealer, likewise, will replace the panel in the same way that the Airstream service department would.

The key to proper panel replacement, is to inject vulkem sealer between the seams, which gives a perfect seal.

There are a few dealer, however, who don't do it that way.

Andy
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Old 02-07-2008, 05:41 PM   #3
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Thanks for the reply Inland RV

Yes, when I say factor I mean the service department at the factory. The dealer I am working with is Airstream of Arkansas. Do you know what panel replacement method they use?
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Old 02-07-2008, 06:06 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Ozzieboy
Yes, when I say factor I mean the service department at the factory. The dealer I am working with is Airstream of Arkansas. Do you know what panel replacement method they use?
Have no idea, but you could call them and ask, exactly how do they do it.

If they don't inject vulkem between the seams, then find a dealer that does.

If a dealer has not done it in the past, they probably won't appreciate you telling them how to do it better.

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Old 02-07-2008, 06:37 PM   #5
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hi ozzieboy and welcome to the forums...

first of all NEW UNITS DON'T have ANY vulkem on the panel overlaps, it's sikaflex.

the 'factory service center' can and WILL do olympic rivet repairs or bucked rivet repairs.

and they can completely replace the panel OR overlay another panel in the same location...

the approach and method is determined by cost, location, who's paying for it and customer demands.

it is very hard for the average customer to detect the difference in the final result...

and folks often argue about any functional difference in the 4 options...

have you got a photo of your damage?

put it up here for us to enjoy and learn from

for example an end cap or end panel ding requires much LESS deconstruction then a side ding...

even a tiny side gouge could technically require a full length side panel replacement,

which is a LOT of deconstruction for a few square inches of pain....

so i'd consider some other approach that's 'better than new' for a really small gouge.

the folks at aoa do fantastic work with panel replacements...

i could explain exactly how they do it since i've seen them in action...

but won't take that disrespectful approach, call them and discuss it.

another great option is the dealer in weatherford texas.

i'm sure you are in PAIN that the new baby is blemished...

NO ONE can make it like it was before, since your memory of the encounter cannot be erased.

but over time the memory will fade and the excellent repair will be overshadowed...

by new dings...

cheers
2air'
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Old 02-07-2008, 06:37 PM   #6
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PM Airhog1. Gene works at Airstream of Arkansas.
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Old 02-07-2008, 08:54 PM   #7
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Pics of Gouge

I'm almost embarrassed to show the gouge, but here are some pics...if I've done this right.


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Old 02-07-2008, 09:03 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Ozzieboy
I'm almost embarrassed to show the gouge, but here are some pics...if I've done this right...
good job o'boy!

no need to b embarrassed, we feel your pain.

the wheel well molding can be replaced very easily..

it's a 2 part molding and only the outer section is gouged.

just replacing this piece of trim, and having bill/mike at aoa work the spot out some, will make it look MUCH better.

personally i would NOT have the full side panel replaced for that skin blemish...

but i would determine the COST for a full panel job.

get 2 estimates and ask the insurance company to pick one and cut you a check for the repairs.

then i'd apply a coating of WAX or SEALANT to the spot....

or a cute decal OVER the spot (like a pirate flag or bullet hole or hippie flower)

then go camping.

in a few months (if you still REALLY can't live with it) reconsider the options for a creative plastic surgery in just that area...

NO WAY i'd have a full sheet of side skin done for that...

even IF someone else is paying for it.

cheers
2air'
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Old 02-07-2008, 10:05 PM   #9
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Hi, doesn't look a very big deal to me, but I feel the pain; Been there, done that. On your's I would replace the wheel well moulding and live with the little scrape or cover it up like 2air said or do what we did. American flag decal custom ordered to the perfect size needed.
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Old 02-08-2008, 10:24 AM   #10
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Great idea Robert...I like it a lot!
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Old 02-10-2008, 12:30 PM   #11
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Opinions are like...

First wound on a brand new trailer. I know how that hurts.

Call A of A and get the job done right so your trailer continues to look new. That is until you mess something up. (and you probably will.) Then go sticker shopping.

My advice would mirror others if your trailer was already showing the memories of past adventures.
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