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Old 06-20-2006, 08:44 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by micsupply
Andy, thanks for the reply - it's a '78 excella 500. thoughts?
You will still have to replace the damaged segments, since they are compound curves.

They are made the same way as the old style segments, using soft aluminum.

Your dealer should be able to help you with replacements, along with olympic rivets and some vulkem sealer.

Andy
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Old 06-20-2006, 08:48 PM   #44
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i was recetnly reading old 'vintage advantage' and there were discussions (post fargo) of how to repair dents from the inside. it involved drilling holes in the interior and pushing the outer skin from the insde of the trailer.

i've been thinking about a quarter size hole in the endcap would enable me to hit this dent from various angles. anyone out there have any success with this approach?
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Old 06-20-2006, 08:55 PM   #45
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Originally Posted by micsupply
i was recetnly reading old 'vintage advantage' and there were discussions (post fargo) of how to repair dents from the inside. it involved drilling holes in the interior and pushing the outer skin from the insde of the trailer. anyone out there have any success with this approach?

Pushing on the soft metal segments from the inside, after the metal has been creased, is really a waste of time.

Secondly, why would a person want to drill holes in a perfectly good end shell head liner? And if you did, how would you hide them.

The holes would have to be very large to push out most dents, which will almost always look worse, after the fact.

Most owners have insurance on the trailer.

The purpose of the insurance is to also cover a persons boo bo's.

If you want to keep the trailer looking original, for heavens sake, if a person does not have the talent to replace a segment, then take it to a qualified dealer, and save the headaches.

Andy
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Old 06-20-2006, 09:06 PM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In
Pushing on the soft metal segments from the inside, after the metal has been creased, is really a waste of time.

Secondly, why would a person want to drill holes in a perfectly good end shell head liner? And if you did, how would you hide them.

The holes would have to be very large to push out most dents, which will almost always look worse, after the fact.

Most owners have insurance on the trailer.

The purpose of the insurance is to also cover a persons boo bo's.

If you want to keep the trailer looking original, for heavens sake, if a person does not have the talent to replace a segment, then take it to a qualified dealer, and save the headaches.

Andy
the postion f the hole would be behind the curtain. a little fiber glass and resin would fix a quarter size hole, that no one will ever see, nicely. however, if it will not yield results i'm looking for than i'll continue to live with the dent.

my concern about filing an insurance claim on a $2k repair is that my premium will go up and over the years i'll wind up paying much more for the repair via higher rates than what it would cost if i laid out the $2k in cash.

am i wrong?
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Old 06-21-2006, 01:42 AM   #47
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Dave, I agree with you. In the long haul you might see increased premiums that would amount to over the 2K outlay. Maybe a bone yard would have the segment you require that is in decent shape for quite a bit less.

At the risk of offending some folks, I am of the opinion that my trailer is not really a "classic" and have a hard time justifying large sums of $$ to make it picture perfect. I have a 78 31" Sovereign rear bath model. From what I understand that is not really a desirable model. I have made a few modifcations to make the rig more desireable to me (mending a rusted out rear frame, increasing black and gray tank capacity and moving them forward to aid with the rear end sag phenomena that fortunately has never been a factor with my rig). I guess what I am trying to say is I like the reliabilty and the craftsmanship that these trailers offer, We use our trailer a lot and really enjoy it, but it is not a high enough priority in my life to break the bank to keep the trailer perfect for resale.

I purchased the trailer about 4 years ago for 5K and have another 3K invested in updated furniture, tanks, appliances, flooring, etc. to make the trailer more useful to me and my family. If my family can enjoy the trailer for the next 5 - 10 years and I turn around and have to give it away due to the modifications I have made, so be it. It was $$ well spent on time spent with my family.

Sorry for the rant....

Anyway I would say it can't hurt to try to fix the panel yourself. Worst case, you buy an new panel or like Andy suggested, have it fixed by an Airstream shop. You have an Excella, so it is probably a much more desireable rig than mine.

sw
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Old 06-21-2006, 09:52 AM   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by micsupply
the position f the hole would be behind the curtain. a little fiber glass and resin would fix a quarter size hole, that no one will ever see, nicely. however, if it will not yield results I'm looking for than I'll continue to live with the dent.

my concern about filing an insurance claim on a $2k repair is that my premium will go up and over the years I'll wind up paying much more for the repair via higher rates than what it would cost if i laid out the $2k in cash.

am i wrong?

Dead wrong.

You cannot do, what you are thinking about doing. You cannot push out a large dent, with a small object. The first thing that happens, in the soft metal, is you will put a reverse dent in the panel. Then what?? You made it worse, and didn't fix the problem.

A good insurance company doesn't raise rates simply because you had a loss.

Your policy covers, as policies are worded, your negligence (boo boos and/or mistakes).

Therefore unless you a repeat claimant, your rates will stay the same.

On the other hand, if your company decides to raise the rates, simply change companies.

Most good insurance companies that insure your cars, trucks, home, personal effects, jewelry, a motorhome or travel trailer, boats and the like, don't want to take the risk of losing you as an insured.

This thing about raising your rates, just because you had a claim, is another in a long line of Airstream myths.

Granted some companies have raised the rates, and the answer is simply. Change companies.

Another tip off, to an insurance company, is when you want to handle the claim, and do the work, etc, etc.

However, if you turn in a claim, get the claim number. Take the coach to a good dealer. Have your insurance information with you. If the dealer is worth a hoot, they will prepare an estimate and submit it to your insurance company. That keeps you out of the middle.

Almost without exception, if an individual submits the claim, submits the estimate, is going to repair it themselves, it sends up flags of every color to most insurance companies, of potential fraud.

DON'T DO IT.

Let your dealer handle it, and if they can't or refuse to help you, then that answers is simple.

Find a dealer that knows how, and is more than willing to go to bat, for you.

Andy

Andy
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Old 06-21-2006, 10:36 AM   #49
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Andy, that may be the case in some places, but I can assure you, in MA, it is not.
We are in a unique position, here, as the state sets the insurance rules and rates; not the companies. The cost of automobile insurance is the same, no matter who your carrier is. There is a point-system of surcharging, based on the number of "boo-boos" any particular driver causes. If you're found "at fault" in an accident, you get points. go a period of time without "boo-boos", the points go away. If you cause damage to your own, or another's property that results in an insurance claim, (or get a speeding ticket!), you will be surcharged, and changing insurance companies won't change that.

just had a small dent in my car fixed about a month ago. $3K damage. Since it was caused by someone in my family (who shall remain nameless), we had to do some math to see if it was worthwhile filing a claim. It was...but not by much!! Our insurance is going to cost us an extra $2500 over the next few years.

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Old 06-21-2006, 10:46 AM   #50
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Sladew, Let me see if I got this right. Your in 8K for a comfortable trailer you like and enjoy. You seem to plan on using it til its worn out and then letting it go. So if it does not leak why fix the dent? Just make up an outrageous story as to how it got there include UFO's, Hurricanes and a plot to overthrow the Auto club. Thats just my opinion.
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Old 06-21-2006, 11:42 AM   #51
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Andy, that may be the case in some places, but I can assure you, in MA, it is not.
We are in a unique position, here, as the state sets the insurance rules and rates; not the companies. The cost of automobile insurance is the same, no matter who your carrier is. There is a point-system of surcharging, based on the number of "boo-boos" any particular driver causes. If you're found "at fault" in an accident, you get points. go a period of time without "boo-boos", the points go away. If you cause damage to your own, or another's property that results in an insurance claim, (or get a speeding ticket!), you will be surcharged, and changing insurance companies won't change that.

just had a small dent in my car fixed about a month ago. $3K damage. Since it was caused by someone in my family (who shall remain nameless), we had to do some math to see if it was worthwhile filing a claim. It was...but not by much!! Our insurance is going to cost us an extra $2500 over the next few years.

As Yogi Berra often said, "Never say never".

There is almost always an exception to the norm.

But the exceptions, don't alter, generally speaking, the norm.

Andy
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