Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 08-30-2016, 08:58 PM   #29
Some Guy
 
djarrett's Avatar

 
Nashville , Tennessee
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 220
Ray -

I understand where you are coming from.

I had the first Conqueror Commander (UEV490) in the US.



It was robust - I had an entire wheel come off while traveling 60 MPH (passed us) and the trailer rode a good half mile or more on the wheel hub. No body damage at all. We had the wheel studs re-threaded and on the way we went.

That said there were several things that facilitated our move to the airstream -
1) We are in the south and the access to places to off the beaten path are so very limited. Of the places we have camped in the Conqueror, only two would have not been possible in the airstream.
2) While it was very well built for off-road, it was extremely limited in amenities - No air conditioning, no heat, an immense amount of set up. No screen doors.
3) It leaked around all the weather seals.
4) It was starting to show age after only 4 years (powder coat finish was chalking, areas were starting to rust.
I'll add to this that I am about as OCD as they come, and I was constantly cleaning, maintaining and restoring wear.
My point - They aren't all that and a rubber biscuit. Off road capable? TOTALLY! An Airstream? Not even close.

We own the Eddie Bauer Edition as our answer to the outdoor-to-indoor experience. We didn't buy it so we can schlep a kayak in and out of the interior of the trailer.

That said, we had some pretty rough damage (fixed by the great folks at Jackson Center) from a truck throwing a turn-buckle handle. I worry about scratches, etc.

I've given much thought to beefing up the off road prowess of the AS.

A diamond plate bottom stone plate instead of aluminum (talking under-belly here). Diamond plate stone guards/LP tank guards. That sort of thing ...

As for the Oliver - I have been in one. I felt immediately like the Oliver should have been the Airstream acquisition over the Nest. It has the same feel as an updated Argosy. That said, it was very, very nice if you like nautical. It has a very nautical feel inside, but the biggest thing for me was the fiberglass outgassing smell. I simply couldn't stay in one. But it was a great trailer.

Our set up now:
__________________

__________________
The Jarretts
Nashville, Tennessee
2015 25' Eddie Bauer
2015 F250 TV-Petrol
djarrett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2016, 10:15 PM   #30
Rivet Master
 
switz's Avatar

 
2014 31' Classic
2015 23' International
2013 25' FB International
Apache Junction , Arizona
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 4,492
Images: 8
We are very happy with our 2015 23D International Serenity after some modifications that make it very off-grid friendly. It came with factory installed street and rear awnings, convection microwave and a 1,000 watt inverter we discarded. All 120Vac outlets are now powered by the Magnum inverter. We are towing it with a 2007 Mercedes ML320 CDI four wheel drive diesel with a CanAm reinforced receiver.

Installed 15" SenDel T03-56545T wheels and Michelin LTX (P) 235/75R15 XL tires with Centramatic wheel balancers #200-221, and a Dill 1506-453 TPMS
Installed Tekonsha Prodigy RF brake control head on front of empty battery box.
Installed auto adjusting drum brake upgrade and four sets of Timken bearings (#4 and #17 bearing sets and #441151 seals) Built a larger spare tire carrier, used McGard 24138 Chrome Cone Seat Wheel Locks and McGard 64010 Chrome Bulge Cone Seat Style Lug Nuts

Maxim skylight with white frosted lens installed
Two MaxxFan 7000K fans installed
Truma "AquaGo comfort" instant on propane only water heater installed with custom external door hatch skin
Installed 10" Rocky Mountain mattress with their fitted sheets
Installed all available Airstream stainless steel parts
Flooring replacement with Marmoleum Vivace (hole worn by dinette table leg in stock flooring in 2000 miles)
Brass wear plate installed under dinette table leg
WiFi Ranger, XM/Sirius and Verizon MiFi antennas installed
Voyager wireless rear camera installed with lighted power switch
Winegard Rayzar autotune TV antenna replaced crank-up TV antenna
Installed Rigid Industries LED reverse lights
Rewired all electrical outlets to Hubbell 20 amp GFI
Five 100 watt solar panels system with Magnum MSH-3012 inverter, Blue Sky 3024iL solar controller and 300 amp-hour lithium battery, Magnum ME-ARC control, Blue Sky IPN Pro remote control
New main 30 amp circuit breaker panel and new six circuit sub-panel
Power outlets added to rear storage area, both hanging closets, in furnace air return space under dinette, rear of trailer
12Vdc outlets in hall and front under dinette
Special 12Vdc power outlet behind refrigerator for Viavir 450P portable air compressor
Special blocking plate w/3 fans to cool refrigerator
Added front outside power inlet with automatic transfer switch
Custom Hickory panels for ship's clock and solar controls, converted to a Hickory dinette top and added a Hickory lift up side table by the sink, made Hickory spice rack like in Classic
Custom curtains made by a friend
Replaced all plastic cabinet catches with brass ball catches
Power on/off switch for subwoofer
Installed Dometic CU434 stove and Vitrifrigo DP150i refrigerator
Created additional storage under the bed and made storage beside the curb side wheel well

The solar system has no issues replenishing the power consumed by the freon based Dan Foss 12Vdc compressor in the refrigerator. The hybrid Magnum MSH-3012 inverter can draw the necessary additional startup power for the air conditioner when using just one 2000 watt propane converted Honda generator.

We gained over an inch of ground clearance when going from the stock 14" tires and wheels to the 15" Sendel wheels with Michelin tires.

All the electrical changes fit under the sofa and dinette seat with no loss of accessible storage space.
__________________

__________________
WBCCI Life Member 5123, AIR 70341, 4CU, WD9EMC

TV - 2012 Dodge 2500 4x4 Cummins HO, automatic, Centramatics, Kelderman level ride airbag suspension, bed shell

2014 31' Classic model 30 twin beds, 50 amp service, 900 watt solar system, Centramatics, Dill TPMS, disc brakes, 16" tires & wheels
switz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2016, 06:09 AM   #31
Vintage Kin
 
slowmover's Avatar
 
Fort Worth , Texas
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 6,692
Images: 1
The thread title question starts with frame flex. It's not quite a "real" frame under an AS. And not quite a monocoque structure, either.

Id think total length and weight almost exclusively over the wheels would be the requirement.

Then there is tongue strength and attachment. Rotation on the ball.

Not looking to start argument, but thinking that an old unit, redone specifically for this purpose, would be the way to go.

Coming in and out of oilfield with new equipment that wore out quickly on unpaved roads not always that bad was sobering.
__________________
1990 35' Silver Streak Sterling; 9k GVWR.
2004 DODGE Cummins 305/555; 6-manual; 9k GVWR.
Hensley Arrow. 9-cpm solo, 15-cpm towing
Sold: Silver Streak Model 3411
slowmover is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2016, 07:10 AM   #32
Rivet Master
 
1999 30' Excella 1000
Brookeville , Maryland
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 595
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray Eklund View Post



OK... Maybe the Oliver or the Casita has potential. I am still trying to get an Oliver owner in the Denver area to permit me to examine the construction... with no success, yet. Even Oliver itself is reluctant to send any information concerning interiors and exterior construction. The web site is closed to NON Oliver participation and questioning.
Ray, Going to the Casita or Oliver plant for a tour would be the best way to inspect. Casita plant is in Rice Tx. 8am to 1pm m-f. Oliver tours are in Hohenwald Tn. I hope all engineers from airstream have been at both plants with ''open minds'' for ideas.
__________________
streaminwild is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2016, 07:28 AM   #33
2 Rivet Member
 
Bullit's Avatar
 
1971 18' Caravel
Nokesville , Virginia
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 98
Ray, thanks for this thread. I am currently working a full Monty on a 71 Caravel with a specific intent to boondock. I will be revisiting this thread for all the good information. Currently have a welder building a deeper (stronger) frame to accommodate bigger storage tanks. Things like construction, solar, insulation, clearance, radio/internet, etc have all been concerns of mine as well. You have a great crew of forum members in your area, you should start a project and resto-mod the airstream you want.
Bull
__________________
Bullit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2016, 07:45 AM   #34
2 Rivet Member
 
Bullit's Avatar
 
1971 18' Caravel
Nokesville , Virginia
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 98
Thought I would include this offering from Uinta brewing in Salt Lake. I think they might be like minded individuals...Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByAirstream Forums1472651112.289870.jpg
Views:	96
Size:	87.0 KB
ID:	270438
__________________
Bullit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2016, 11:33 AM   #35
Rivet Master
 
Ray Eklund's Avatar

 
2014 25' International
2006 23' Safari SE
Currently Looking...
Boulder City , Nevada
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 2,146
Kitchen Sink: Secure the lower support and frame

Our 25 foot 2014 International has the curved kitchen sink fixture which is much, if not the same as our 2006 23' Safari. At the bottom is an aluminum kick plate. It has about ten wood screws holding it to the cabinet.

Remove those from the left to the right side, leaving the last wood screw on the right side to keep the kick plate aligned. The ends slide between the horizontal and vertical cabinet frames. Lightly pull on the left side and it will spring out of this inset.

Find the wood screw, dead center at the bottom of the vertical wood strip that has the door ball bearing latches. It is just above the linoleum floor. Is there some black residue on the linoleum? If so, this screw is already loose and catches a lot of movement when the trailer is in motion. Remove it. The wood support frame for the plastic trash can will handle a much longer wood screw. Put a small washer on the of this wood screw (you will never notice it) and secure this lower end. It is just above the linoleum.

The lower 'wood' frame that houses the plastic trash can (would have been a nice touch to have been aluminum) is not secured to the front vertical support, so do not push down on the forward/front section. Even avoid putting any stuff on top as that front edge had no support on my trailer. I took two wood screws and by holding this thin sheet of wood up a little and screwed each in about half way. The part of the screw that sticks out... now supports the front and you can use the surface to store kitchen items, if needed.

When the aluminum kick plate is removed from the left side, let it go straight. It will naturally 'unspring' to the right of the cabinet. Remember that the right side should have ONE screw holding it to the cabinet base for alignment.

There are two white wood screws holding the lower flat base to the floor. Unscrew both of them them, and note the length. If they were loose, if you use the same hole, add a small washer to the end of your better wood screw so it does not pull through the fiber board when securing. Then add one extra wood screw on each side, of your own, for a firm tightness. I added another wood screw to the back and center, as well. I use a long nail and hammer an indent to get the wood screw started. Saves you some cursing, as well.

Then I added about eight 1/2" wood screws around the lower base that is in contact with the floor. This counter is not going to be moving while the trailer is being towed! The entire cabinet feels secure and should remain so when out Boondocking.

Possibly the theory when attaching the cabinets to themselves and the floor and walls is to keep them 'flexing' when the trailer is moving. If so, the factory is doing a fine job.

If by attaching the cabinets with additional support and better wood screws (not the soft metal white headed ones)... they are snug and secure, but maybe the factory discovered that this is not recommended.

My theory... if the cabinet is showing movement on the linoleum and the white factory screws are backing out... they tend to fall out eventually. More support with better hardware is better. Also feel the backs of some supports. Metal brackets secured by wood screws are also to be found. Snug them up if needed.

I found that to return the lower kick plate back to its original position takes an extra hand to hold it secure on the left side. I found one wood screw that was shorter than the others when removing all of them. So, maybe the person who assembles a cabinet grabs whatever is laying nearby, or... I will look closer to understand why this odd one in the group.
__________________
Human Bean
Ray Eklund is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2016, 12:43 PM   #36
Rivet Master
 
Gearheart's Avatar

 
1973 Argosy 24
Kitchener , Ontario
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 812
Images: 1
Flexing is what causes screws to shear off the way 3 out of 4 screws holding the back bed support to the wall did on my Argosy. The only screw that did not shear was supported by a post going down to the floor thus preventing flex at that point.My repairs will include floor supports at all locations that were previously hung to flex. The bed support rail at the wall was not even installed level with the floor. It seems that shoddy workmanship was already in place 43 years ago. I was taught to be fussy about my work even when the "no one will ever see it" card was playable. I also think that the constant thumping I got on the interstate highways with the uneven concrete slabs did more harm than the back roads that Ray took us down.
__________________
Gearheart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2016, 04:04 PM   #37
Rivet Master
 
Ray Eklund's Avatar

 
2014 25' International
2006 23' Safari SE
Currently Looking...
Boulder City , Nevada
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 2,146
Loose Screws find a home

"I also think that the constant thumping I got on the interstate highways with the uneven concrete slabs did more harm than the back roads that Ray took us down."
Gearheart

The thumping sound were the trout you had in your sink from Grey' River.

******
Update to post #35. The lower shelf that supports the 'plastic waste basket' versus a 'durable aluminum trash receptacle' is supported by the aluminum kick plate screws. Just be careful with it when the kick plate is removed and you are securing the cabinet to the floor.

In response to Gearheart Post #36.
We, now, all understand when someone says either of us has a 'screw loose', it is common knowledge and fact. Owning a vintage or a current Airstream may have lots of loose screws to the benefit of those who need any. There is no shame having one or more loose screws, nowhere to be found. Carry a variety in the event that you or a friend needs to find their loose screw(s).
__________________
Human Bean
Ray Eklund is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2016, 04:12 PM   #38
aap
2 Rivet Member
 
2015 23' FB Flying Cloud
Seattle , Washington
Join Date: Jan 2016
Posts: 37
Wow, what a wealth of information. I just came back from my "1st major outing, what a mess". Please see post with same title in On the Road forum. Ray is familiar with my story...1st travel trailer/1st trip and a bunch of damage over nothing but essentially whats been described here. I am curious what amount of time/ $ it will take to get my 2015l 23ft FB FC off road ready...I realize there are many variables, but for those who have gone before me...whats a ballpark figure on time/ $...some quick fixes I can do myself l, others not so much...just wondering if cost benefit is there or if I need something different.

Thanks,
-anthony
__________________
aap is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2016, 05:15 PM   #39
3 Rivet Member
 
Burnside Bob's Avatar
 
2009 25' FB Flying Cloud
1973 31' Sovereign
Mt Angel , Oregon
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 158
Secret Sink Compartment

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray Eklund View Post
Our 25 foot 2014 International has the curved kitchen sink fixture which is much, if not the same as our 2006 23' Safari. At the bottom is an aluminum kick plate. It has about ten wood screws holding it to the cabinet.
We've the same sink cabinet, although in our 25 foot 2009 FC FB I believe it is a mirror image of yours. As our trailer is short on storage, any unused space could be converted to same.

During that rainy afternoon at Doublecabin it occurred to me that there was an unused cavity in the sink cabinet behind the magazine rack. True, the wheel well is in there, but I don't think the wheel well occupies even half the width of that area.

So there it is. A secret location for a safe, contraband, pots and pans, canned goods, or?? Maybe we should have had Q dog check it out when we had the chance?
__________________
Best, Burnside

"To err is human, to air is devine."
Burnside Bob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2016, 06:55 PM   #40
Rivet Master
 
Ray Eklund's Avatar

 
2014 25' International
2006 23' Safari SE
Currently Looking...
Boulder City , Nevada
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 2,146
Some or maybe all models have, just to the right of the cooktop, a closet. Below the closet is a vent for the furnace and air conditioning air flow.

Open the closet. (This is not a Simon Says game. Just do it.)
Below it, the smaller door opens with the vent attached. It is hinged.
Find Burnsides roll of car wash quarters. Or if empty, anything you like.
__________________
Human Bean
Ray Eklund is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2016, 07:18 PM   #41
Rivet Master
 
Ray Eklund's Avatar

 
2014 25' International
2006 23' Safari SE
Currently Looking...
Boulder City , Nevada
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 2,146
I have spent maybe $50.00

Quote:
Originally Posted by aap View Post
Wow, what a wealth of information. I just came back from my "1st major outing, what a mess". Please see post with same title in On the Road forum. Ray is familiar with my story...1st travel trailer/1st trip and a bunch of damage over nothing but essentially whats been described here. I am curious what amount of time/ $ it will take to get my 2015l 23ft FB FC off road ready...I realize there are many variables, but for those who have gone before me...whats a ballpark figure on time/ $...some quick fixes I can do myself l, others not so much...just wondering if cost benefit is there or if I need something different.

Thanks,
-anthony
******
I may have spent $40 to $50 for actual hardware with many screw sizes from years of fixing stuff that falls apart I already own.

If my wife will dig out the receipt, I can make up a list. Some materials would not work for my intended use and returned them to Lowes.

-Hard black steel screws (sheet rock and coarse threaded wood- Ask sales people)
Grip-Rite Fas'ners- buy the one pound carton. A Lifetime of Airstream fixer uppers! Figure out what lengths you need first. Some if a bit too long... you can break off what you do not need of the sharp end to make it shorter. You then must start another screw and swap the shorter one soon afterwards to finish the job. Avoid it if you can, as this is for last resort.

These are strong and I can put what I want to break off for length in a vise grip, lightly whack with a hammer and it breaks the tip and threads not needed.

Mostly hard steel wood / sheet rock kinds of screws in various lengths. One inch, 1.5" to some 3 inch. You must be careful as the widths / thickness of various cabinets can vary considerably. Standard seems to be 1/2" thick and 1/4". If you use too long a screw, the sharp tip will protrude from the interior of another fixture. Cabinets seem to be made in different places as the screw lengths will vary. Some are much too short. Be aware of that, as then the a longer replacement is best.

-Bathroom to Bedroom wall repair

For the bathroom wall that had two 'floating walls' as there were no screws behind the pvc black vent and without breaking the pvc to screw the angle metal corner to the other cabinet side... I drilled through each hole of the angle metal into the bedroom area. The hole drilled was to fit a bolt, washer and nut... so the drilled hole is just the size so the bolt can be forced through, not sloppy.

A carriage bolt would have a better finished look, but I had those with a straight edge... so that was good enough. Maybe carriage bolts and hardware to tighten might add $4 if new... zero if you have them sitting around in the garage, unused from some other lame project.

-Latches (Lowes has all kinds. Some are practical, some... forget it.)

I found some two part latches where one swivels to tighten. By thinking about how it could unlatch... you will figure out how to install the set. I did that on drawers and doors that were flush when closed.

The majority of 'upgrading' are taking out the WHITE headed screws and putting in the aggressive threaded black screws of similar lengths. Sometimes you will note that a longer screw can be used and not enter the other side, into a water line or something you could really mess up... all by yourself. So THINK first.

You will THINK FIRST when you run a screw into the toilet's black water vent and wonder what stinks.
__________________
Human Bean
Ray Eklund is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2016, 07:36 PM   #42
Rivet Master
 
Ray Eklund's Avatar

 
2014 25' International
2006 23' Safari SE
Currently Looking...
Boulder City , Nevada
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 2,146
What are your Fixes? Here are some I have found.

Number ONE Airstream Cabinet disasters:

Some doors hang with no support beneath, creating excess interior hinge flexing, which causes the small interior threaded hinge screws to loosen and the door can fall off the hinge. Yes.. you can keep tightening the small screws, but they will fail again.

Doors that fit flush and have a door edge below or a drawer below that is flush have some kind of support for up and down vibration when moving. Having a 'swivel latch' will reduce this up and down stress. When the hinges begin to fail... the door will have the lower drawer as support, until you fix it.

Where you have two door handles side by side... bungie cord them together, or if you are cheap like myself... tie together with a small diameter nylon rope... or large shoelaces to keep the doors from opening.

Drawers that line up below one another, sometime you can do a loop on the bottom handle, run the cord through the others on the way up and secure them onto something that is stationary, or something you added to tie them down. This works well with the 2006 23 foot Safari, as we took this end of the rope and secured it onto the magazine rack to the right of the refrigerator. It worked absolutely perfectly for maybe 10 cents of rope.

If anyone found some small easy to do cures... do not be bashful. I can make a fool of myself any time I want... I am old and do not mind. So... lets hear it.
__________________

__________________
Human Bean
Ray Eklund is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Upgrading from tent-trailer to Airstream... kirkland1833 Member Introductions 4 10-04-2012 06:44 PM
Tax info on upgrading Airstream Mackhopp Local Regs & Licensing 27 05-11-2011 07:04 PM
upgrading airstream with argosy front window turfclubroad Windows, Doors, Locks & Vents 5 03-17-2009 10:58 AM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by



Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:00 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.