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Old 05-30-2015, 09:02 AM   #15
The Sign Lady
1969 23' Safari
1974 Argosy 22
1964 24' Tradewind
Victoria , British Columbia
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 674
Hi SteveSueMac, yes definitely I had areas where getting the suction cup to play was an obvious issue. Here's where I noticed issues, in some areas I had minor tree branch scratches that affected the seal, some it was mottled clearcoat, and then some areas of the big compound curves in the end caps pretty much matched the profile of the suction cup so it was easy to pull it off as not enough suction was gained. But the most problematic area was the rivets along the overlap seams, It was hard to get the cup placed in between the boundaries of the neighbouring rivets and the cut aluminium edge..the style of suction cup I show in the video is flat in its dormant state and kind of wide for that area. I found it tedious and sometimes impossible to get the cup to work along these edges so I am keeping my eye out for a dent puller my mom had when I was a kid for these areas. Moms kind of looked like a little bathroom plunger with a 2 foot long wood handle and a deep welled suction cup that was only one inch wide, no fancy release lever on that baby, just a good old fasioned suction cup on a stick :-) I'll let you know if I ever find one like it.

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Old 05-30-2015, 11:27 AM   #16
Rivet Master
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1967 17' Caravel
Cadillac , Michigan
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 500
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Great idea!
Thank you!

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Old 09-04-2016, 12:08 PM   #17
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1968 22' Safari
Edmonton , Alberta
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 21
Originally Posted by thesignlady View Post
OK, I've been meaning to post this one for a while...

Here's a simple but amazing way to find and repair leaky rivets

First I had already visually gone over my trailer and replaced any obviously failing rivets. Then I went over every one of my rivets a few times with Captain Tolley's creeping crack cure, Captain Tolleys is nice because it wicks in under the rivet and seals it, but only if the gap is not too big.

Capt. Tolley's Creeping Crack Cure

Now for the cool part...

Everyone know the concept of how a suction cup works right, apply a suction cup to a smooth surface and it will seal, if you place it on incorrectly and air gets under, there is no seal...so based on that concept I went out to my trailer and went over each rivet one by one. If I tested a rivet with my suction cup and it didn't stay stuck on I knew that air was coming through from under the rivet itself and if air is getting through so can water.

Here is my video showing the process we used to find and repair leaky rivets


The suction cups can be found at pretty much any auto repair place

This is the Olympic rivet kit I bought from vintage trailer supply

Olympic Riveting Kit

The rivet remover tool I also bought from VTS
This video should be utilized in some sort of vintage airstream owners manual! Well done!!!

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airstream leaks, olympic rivets, riveting, sitka flex 221, leaks, mystery

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