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Old 07-26-2013, 10:06 AM   #1
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1963 19' Globetrotter
Marfa , Texas
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Marker lights

Hi, this is my first post to the forum ... and first Airstream. I wonder if some of you very knowledgeable and creative folks could advise me on the marker lights on my '63 Globetrotter. It looks like a marker light bar was added and replaced. There are old, sheared buck rivets sitting out. The apparently smaller current one is secured with screws. I want my trailer to appear as period correct as possible. Is it possible the trailer came from the factory with a marker light bar? I haven't seen any others with this setup so I presume not. Regardless, I don't care for the look. Is there something period looking I could do with lights or a light? I'm considering either patching the hole or replacing with a single teardrop. What do ya'll think? Would the teardrop look wierd? I'm open to suggestions! Thanks a bunch.

-Gus

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Old 07-26-2013, 11:00 AM   #2
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Hello Augustine. Welcome to the Forum!

Multiple '63 Globetrotters pictured at VintageAirstream.com suggest that these were not sold with marker lights. However you can see an example of the teardrops placed if you click the files for 1963 Globe Trotter 19′ at the lower right corner of that page.

I hope we get some feedback from vintage folk on how to proceed here...
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Old 07-26-2013, 01:30 PM   #3
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Marker lights

Greetings Augustine!

Welcome to the Forums and the world of Vintage Airstreams!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Augustine View Post
Hi, this is my first post to the forum ... and first Airstream. I wonder if some of you very knowledgeable and creative folks could advise me on the marker lights on my '63 Globetrotter. It looks like a marker light bar was added and replaced. There are old, sheared buck rivets sitting out. The apparently smaller current one is secured with screws. I want my trailer to appear as period correct as possible. Is it possible the trailer came from the factory with a marker light bar? I haven't seen any others with this setup so I presume not. Regardless, I don't care for the look. Is there something period looking I could do with lights or a light? I'm considering either patching the hole or replacing with a single teardrop. What do ya'll think? Would the teardrop look wierd? I'm open to suggestions! Thanks a bunch.

-Gus

The clearance light bar on your Globetrotter is definitely much newer than the trailer as teardrop marker lights were utilized at least through 1964. I am going strictly from memory, but I believe that Fred Coldwell in his presentation on the history of Airstream Trailers (Fred Coldwell is the Vintage Airstream Club expert on Vintage Airstream Travel Trailers) that the small, single axle trailers built before 1964 or 1965(?) weren't equipped with clearance lights above the front/rear windows . . . and it may have also been a difference between the Ohio and California manufacturing plants. I suspect that a prior owner may have had to add the clearance lights to satisfy a particular DMV inspector. The teardrop clearance lights would be appropriate for a 1963 or 1964.

Good luck with your projects!

Kevin
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Old 07-26-2013, 01:52 PM   #4
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1963 19' Globetrotter
Marfa , Texas
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Thanks Bob. Pictures of those very nice trailers help quite a bit. The teardrops up high do look snazzy. But rather than putting any more holes in her I think I'm going to patch with either a half circle shape or maybe something fun like a heart. It's the same story up front of the trailer, btw. I just ordered some Olympic rivets. I have some big orange box store sheet aluminum and Alcoa gutter seal for the job. If I would be making a mistake using that aluminum someone please chime in. Fortunately, this is the worst a P.O. has done in form of modification ... although I guess there is a likely safety benefit.
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Old 07-26-2013, 01:57 PM   #5
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Marker lights

Greetings Gus!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Augustine View Post
Thanks Bob. Pictures of those very nice trailers help quite a bit. The teardrops up high do look snazzy. But rather than putting any more holes in her I think I'm going to patch with either a half circle shape or maybe something fun like a heart. It's the same story up front of the trailer, btw. I just ordered some Olympic rivets. I have some big orange box store sheet aluminum and Alcoa gutter seal for the job. If I would be making a mistake using that aluminum someone please chime in. Fortunately, this is the worst a P.O. has done in form of modification ... although I guess there is a likely safety benefit.
The answer to the use of the proposed aluminum is that it depends. If you don't plan on polishing your Globetrotter, then the proposed aluminum should be fine. Should a polish job factor into your future plans, you will want to use Alclad aluminum . . . it has a special coating of pure aluminum applied to the base aluminum alloy . . . it is this special process that produces aluminum that can be shined to the mirror surface that so many desire. Aircraft Spruce is a mail order source for small quantities of this product, and it can often be obtained locally from an airframe repair specialist.

Good luck with your Globetrotter!

Kevin
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Old 07-26-2013, 02:05 PM   #6
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1963 19' Globetrotter
Marfa , Texas
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Thanks Kevin. I considered too that it was maybe a legal requirement. Even if it is, somewhere, and not grandfathered in as from the factory, I'm going to go ahead and patch. I just registered it and the folks at the DMV didn't want anything but my check. It's a California-made trailer with no other holes where factory teardrop clearance lights might have been.
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