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Old 04-15-2009, 12:24 AM   #1
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1960 Caravel
Bend , Oregon
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My 1953 Spartanette Tandem 131

Hi all. I joined in the spirit of sharing and learning. I recently aquired a 1953 Spartan Aircraft Spartanette Tandem 131. I saw a lot of support here for others who have purchased Spartans so I thought I'd join too.

The basics. This trailer was sitting on a recreational property for the last 40 years and has never been used full time. People were starting to pick at it and I convinced the out-of-state owners to sell it to me so I could bring her back to full glory. With a few exceptions it is probably one of the best preserved Spartans I've seen. It's original right down to the mattresses and couch,water heater and refrigerator. I'm really thrilled to own this jewell and hope to learn as much as I can. The Spartanette Tandem 131 was only built in the last half of 1953 which was also the last year of production for all Spartanettes. I have yet to find another one like it but I do hope one will turn up. Who knows.. maybe I'll find one here!

Anyway, here are a few pics I took when it breathed fresh air for the first time in many years. These are "as-found" pics. I brought it home over Easter weekend and we have already started working on it. First thing was to remove the nasty shag carpet to expose the original flooring. We're currently working on removal of the ancient window tint and beginning a thorough cleaning. If there is interest here I'll post progress pics from time to time. Glad to be part of the group! Don.

Obviously things tend to photograph better than they really look but I'm pretty thrilled to have found this old girl in the shape she's in. It has had a couple leaks over the years but I'm amazed at how it held up under the four foot snow loads of the central Oregon Cascades as long as it did. It had been sitting in the same spot since approx. 1969. Thanks for letting me share and feel free to share info if you know something I don't.. (highly possible) DD

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Old 04-15-2009, 12:47 AM   #2
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1963 16' Bambi
Yreka , California
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Hello and welcome!

Wow! You have found a beauty! The interior is great looking!

What are your plans for this great trailer? Do you plan on towing it around and camping, or using it in a stationary position?

Great find!

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Old 04-15-2009, 05:02 AM   #3
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1964 22' Safari
Elyria , Ohio
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Very nice, I love the woodwork. What a jewel.
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Old 04-15-2009, 05:14 AM   #4
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1968 22' Safari
Kalamazoo , Michigan
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Man...the interior is BEAUTIFUL!!! I can't wait to see what you do with it! Congrats.
'68 Safari Land Yacht, Double
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Old 04-15-2009, 07:28 AM   #5
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Jonesboro , Georgia
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Love it! Keep the pictures coming.
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Old 04-15-2009, 08:44 AM   #6
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Welcome from the Florida Panhandle

Welcome to the Forums. We're glad to have you with us.

That sure is one neat trailer. Were the axles still on her or had they been removed? It hard to tell from the pictures.

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Old 04-15-2009, 09:23 AM   #7
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Edmonds , Washington
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It's beautiful! I'm so glad you have adopted this and I look forward to seeing it return to its former glory. Please continue to share pictures.
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Old 04-15-2009, 09:53 AM   #8
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Old 04-15-2009, 11:15 AM   #9
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1973 27' Overlander
1963 19' Globetrotter
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Nice trailer,I have a 48 24' ,hope to bring back to it`s glory some day. Keep pictures coming of your progress.Dave
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Old 04-15-2009, 12:27 PM   #10
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1960 Caravel
Bend , Oregon
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Posts: 89
Thanks everyone.
I'll post more pics as soon as I have a chance to get them hosted and size them down. To answer a couple questions.. Though it was set on blocks and skirted, it had it's original suspension, axles, and even tires. It was really in a hole and it was a job to get it out . Even with two of us we snagged the sewer outlet and probably broke a pipe up in the underbelly. The trailer was only about four inches from a large shed on one side and we managed to avoid contact using planks on the soft ground. I put a set of new tires and wheels on it as soon as we got it pulled off the property. We also packed the bearings and replaced the seals on site. It was a 30 mile trip home and she towed like a champ. It was equipped at the factory with Linco torsion axles, which is a rarity among Spartans. Anyway, it's home now and I just got the shore power rewired and she lit up the yard a couple nights ago. now I can get some real work done. More to come..
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Old 04-15-2009, 02:37 PM   #11
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I'm drooling and I'm not even into restoring!

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Old 04-15-2009, 03:31 PM   #12
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Erie , Pennsylvania
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Wow!!! She sure is pretty. I would love to see more pictures as you progress. That inside is really cool
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Old 04-15-2009, 04:56 PM   #13
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Deerfield , Illinois
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That's a real breath of fresh air, after looking at only Airstreams for so long (no offense to our brand, of course.)

I too can't wait to see more photos of your resto. It was lucky you came along when you did... as nobody who was "picking" at it got very far. Just some missing lights, it looks like.
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Old 04-15-2009, 07:32 PM   #14
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1960 Caravel
Bend , Oregon
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Posts: 89
Here are a few more pics taken before I brought it home last weekend.
The next pics won't be so pretty. Time to do a major clean up.

The toilet still has a paper decal on the tank. This is the only Spartanette I've ever seen with a full 3pc. bathroom.

Love this curve in the living room ceiling!

Dixie Range

Original linoleum. Unfortunately not all of it is this good.

Mechanical doorbell. Best sound ever.

Original davenport and end table.

Mattress tag.

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