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Old 04-05-2011, 07:33 PM   #1
1 Rivet Member
1981 31' International
houston , Texas
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 5
Is bead-board an option?

My DH and I are newbies to AS - as in 1 day ago. We have a 1981 International 31'. I would like to lighten it up a bit and wondered if anyone has ever applied bead-board to the woodwalls/partitions?

If that is not an option, would we just lightly sand, prime and paint?

Thanks in advance for any tips, suggestions, etc.

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Old 04-05-2011, 07:57 PM   #2
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2012 25' FB Eddie Bauer
Vintage Kin Owner
Virginia Beach , Virginia
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 6,087
A weighty Question

Airstreams have lightweight frames, so anything that adds weight should be thought over carefully. First look very carefully at your walls... are they real wood or a laminated surface? If they're the oak wood, the varnish darkens over the years, especially if people cooked a lot inside. There are Formby's products (very similar o laquer thinner or I miss my guess) that can be used with steel wool that liquify the top layer of the varnish and allow the steel wool to absorb the surface crud. This can lighten the wood considerably. You could also "wash" the surface of the wood with a glazed varnish. Have you ever seen "limed oak"? A white glaze could get that look. And of course you COULD just sand and paint a natural wood.

Laminate - I've heard of people painting it but I'd go to the "search" function and do an advanced search on that topic. You could wallpaper over it (YES I am being serious), but get advice about your adhesive. All wallpaper does not look like great aunt Rose's floral and lattice horror walls! Many commercial buildings use a heavy duty vinyl that is 45 or more inches wide, is scrubbable and will last for 10 to 20 years. It aint cheap but...

Lastly you can re-laminate walls just like you do on countertops. If you do, use a better grade of stuff than they have in the Safari/Flying Cloud line. I have a newer Safari with really cheap laminates and some are coming loose. They are about one step up from Contact Paper. One really big problem with them? I had some Skin So Soft (mineral oil based) in my medicine cabinet. It leaked and I didn't notice it right away. It got under the edge of the laminate and loosened a whole bunch of it. I got it semi-repaired but it's only a matter of time before I'll rebuild the whole cabinet in disgust.


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Old 04-05-2011, 08:00 PM   #3
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2017 26' Flying Cloud
1976 Argosy 28
Alamo Heights , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 6,574
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The 2nd owner of almost-my Argosy did a great job with wallpaper. He said he removed the plastic laminate first, so the wallpaper is on wood instead of the plastic laminate. He removed all the metal edge trim, applied the wallpaper and reinstalled the trim over it.

It's a mediocre photo, just with my phone cam, but you can see one of the walls that's original and one that's papered, you just don't get the texture of the paper from the crappy photo. It's nice, nubby wallpaper. It's on the roof lockers too.
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Old 04-05-2011, 08:00 PM   #4
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1967 30' Sovereign
1999 31' Land Yacht
Bosque Farms , New Mexico
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 6,517
Greetings, heatherblair, and welcome to the forums! I'm sure you'll find lots and lots of suggestions for what to do with your walls here.

One way you might consider, short of changing out wall covering, is simply to open the rig up to more light. Does it have the translucent vents? Window coverings that can be switched out?

Again, welcome to the forums!

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Old 04-13-2012, 03:38 PM   #5
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1975 31' Sovereign
Dallas , Texas
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 11
Images: 5
Beadboard wallpaper

I am installing a faux beadboard wallpaper in my airstream- definitely lightens it up without the weight. You will just have to be comfortable hanging wallpaper- be sure to prep the surface first. It has a thick texture and can be painted too...

Hope this helps!

Shop allen + roth Beadboard Paintable Wallpaper at
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Old 04-13-2015, 11:36 AM   #6
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2005 30' Safari
Golden , Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 37
Do you like it?

Originally Posted by idaramin View Post
I am installing a faux beadboard wallpaper in my airstream- definitely lightens it up without the weight. You will just have to be comfortable hanging wallpaper- be sure to prep the surface first. It has a thick texture and can be painted too...

Hope this helps!

Shop allen + roth Beadboard Paintable Wallpaper at
Ida, do you have any updated photos since using this wallpaper? This seems to be exactly what I'm looking for for our bathroom re-do. Thanks!


2005 30 Safari Bunkhouse

I'm restless. Things are calling me away. My hair is being pulled by the stars again. -Anais Nin
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