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Old 06-04-2010, 07:47 PM   #1
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Thumbs up My Silver Streak Project!

Hi everyone! I guess fate has landed me here! I bought the 1985 SS 3111 that is (still) advertised here in the vintage kin classified.

I have been corresponding with Rednax, an ex SS expert (IMO) of the same vintage and decided to start a thread to track progress as I "do" this trailer. It does need a lot of work but the amazing thing is the trailer is 100% original as far as I can tell. Right down to the tires I had to replace in order to tow it.

It is useable as it is as far as it is roadworthy and the a/c works! I'll get into all of the "issues" as I go. I am going to start taking pics this weekend to document the original condition and materials used in it's construction.

My main work is going to be to get it clean, reliable, all systems working and presentable. I do not have plans for interior mods until I have finished getting it as good as possible in it's original state. I want to camp in it as I go. I plan on breaking it down in a variety of projects and completing segments one at a time and keeping it useable during our wonderful 3 seasons of camping here in Tennessee and doing the major work during the winter season.

I think this is a cool looking trailer because it has the Armadillo type corners and it has radiused windows which play with the mind mixing old and new!

This one is a double bed rear bedroom with center bath. The front has the sofa bed on the port side and the table running down the centerline.

My first project besides cleaning is to get new batteries and box and update the propane tanks so I can begin bringing all the systems on line. I'm going to take care of everything on the tongue. The manual shows a build list with a power jack and it has a manual jack. Maybe that was one item that was replaced. I have ordered a power jack. So, add power jack, junction box for new trailer plug, sandblast and paint all steel on the tongue and propane bottle tie downs, new ebrake switch, chains, batteries, battery box. That will be a good start.

I'll post up some pics after the weekend.

BTW, not mentioned in the ad is that the pics are old. The trailer has weathered very much more.

Doug
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Old 06-04-2010, 08:08 PM   #2
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Congrats on the S-2 Doug.

Post the updated pics and let us know how the project progresses.

Kevin
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Old 06-04-2010, 08:14 PM   #3
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I ran into this guy (above) on a truck board in a "discussion" about aftermarket tuners for mpg . . . and then he goes and buys the trailer whose picture I use as a screen-saver! Can't argue with a turbodiesel Cummins and an aero trailer, IMO.

I am no expert (there is a good deal of expertise on the SS Mailing List at Toms' Web Page), but I am an enthusiast. The last "expert" was Bob Ashby of Texas who died several years ago. His stock of NOS parts was divided and sold not so long ago either. The SS List folks have done at least one group commissioning and purchase of stainless exterior door hinges, and, though I don't carefully read every mailing, I note that problems tend to get solved.

This 3111 (a 31') is a great example of late Silver Streak construction, 1985, not seen very often (most are from the period roughly 1965-1980) with a desirable layout and original right down to the tires [!].

I asked Doug if he wouldn't consider making extensive photographs of the "as bought" condition since original is so rare, and to share some of the better ones here. There will be others desiring that sort of documentation so as to puzzle out what they've found in theirs.

I believe the Vintage Kin subforum is in for a treat.
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Old 06-09-2010, 11:33 AM   #4
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Pictures Pictures!

Congrats! Can't wait to see your photos.

Good luck and have fun with it.

Tina
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Old 06-13-2010, 06:56 PM   #5
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June 12 2010 Update

Been busy buying parts and doing other things but here are some pics. I have started on the tongue which includes new power jack updated OPDs on the tanks, replace battery box, new GP27DCs. This weekend I stripped the tongue, sandblasted and painted. Need to weld up the battery tray next, install and begin the debug on 12VDC and gas for the appliances. The fridge works on 120 VAC and the the AC works! Awning works good too.

Exterior:
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Old 06-13-2010, 07:20 PM   #6
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June 12 Cont.

Here is the tongue project so far. The original batteries were small and the original box was badly deteriorated. I am up sizing to GP27s which will not fit in the frame rails like the recessed box did. My new tray will be above the frame like the older ones. The rotted steel base took a long time to cut out and grind the welds flush. Sandblasted the entire tongue, chains, and also the sandblased the wire terminal ends. Got the frame painted and the power jack installed.

Existing Battery Box Design
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Dual Breakers
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Big Time Rot
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Sandblasted and Ready for Paint
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Sandblasted Rusty Terminal Ends
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Painted with Power Jack Installed
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Found Three Jensen Power Vent Knockoffs on E-Bay. Excact fit and look of the originals. Maybe next week?
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Battery boxes that will sit on the fabricated steel tray.
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Old 06-15-2010, 05:22 PM   #7
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It looks super! What a beautiful trailer.
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Old 06-19-2010, 12:09 AM   #8
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looks good

I have a 1975 silver streak that I have been working on would like to pick your brain on a few things
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Old 06-27-2010, 08:09 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasonhalseth View Post
I have a 1975 silver streak that I have been working on would like to pick your brain on a few things
Sure, I would like to correspond with another SS owner. Keep in mind I have only had mine for 1 month. Done lots of reading though...
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Old 06-27-2010, 09:09 PM   #10
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Berkeley Springs , West Virginia
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Beautiful trailer mate! I know where there's one that's approximately a 28 footer...not sure what the name of it is...I stopped to look at it and talked to the owner. He's using it as a junk storage shed and he's lost the keys to it; but she looks solid from the outside at least.

I love the silver sisters! Best of luck with this girl!

Hope to meet you on the road,
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Old 06-27-2010, 09:24 PM   #11
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6/27/2010 Finished the Battery Boxes and Roof Vents

Hi back to add some updates. Thanks for the support and comments! I have finished the battery tray, hitch wiring, battery boxes, propane cylinders, and wiring. Also replace 3 power roof vents.

Of interest is my wiring diagram I created after studying the SS diagram I have from SS in my Owners manual. As you will see in the pictures and in my custom diagram I have disconnected the 12VDC positive feed that runs through the standard trailer plug and added a GIANT 12VDC Positive and negative through a separate plug. Reasoning as follows: 1. the Dodge truck is woefully inadequate in the ability to pull amps from the 7 pin connector. 2. I have #4AWG already on the back of the truck at a plug. It is direct to the vehicle battery and fused for 160 amps. 3. My Dometic 1303 fridge pulls 23 Amps on 12VDC and I intend on running it on DC when traveling. It is auto switching from 120VAC to 12VDC to Gas. A great fridge! 4. The heavy wire harness will let the Deep Cycle trailer batteries bulk charge off of the truck when driving.

So how does it work?? OK the standard 7 pin runs the trailer lights and brakes like normal so any tow vehicle can pull it. There is no positive house feed on the 7 pin. But there is a ground so all of the lights and brakes work.

My big 12VDC plug feeds power to the house and has a similar sized ground wire. When it is plugged in to the tow vehicle I can run the fridge, run the house, connect or disconnect one or both of my batteries, bulk charge my house batteries from the vehicle or bulk charge the vehicle batteries from the converter on the trailer. Lots of options.

The original positive feed from the 7 pin is capped in the trailer junction box so I can connect it quickly at any time. (Click on the images to make larger in a separate screen)

Welded steel battery tray I made from 3/16 x 2 inch flat stock and the plywood bases that support the boxes.
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Battery straps I made from 1 inch wide steel to hold down batteries in tray. Bolt through bottom tabs I welded on the tray.
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Blue Sea marine 4 way battery switch. This switch is ignition proof meaning it cannot arc externally so it is ok to have it inside the battery box.
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Original SS 30 Amp and 40 Amp breakers. I questioned putting these in the box due to arcing and explosion but SS had them in their box - enclosed.
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Painted and assembled on the tongue with battery hold down straps installed.
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Corner of new junction box and wiring hold down clips. Note: I looped the trailer harness and tow vehicle cable in case I ever need more length or need to redo the wire ends. I have an extra foot plus on both wires just in case.
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Battery tray underside showing how the hold down straps sandwich the whole thing, battery, plywood base, and battery box. Also shows the three ears I welded to the trailer frame. I favored this approach to mount the tray because it allows easy removal of the whole tray and the ears can be easily cut off if another design is made in the future.
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This is the giant connector I use for the separate 12VDC supply. Like I said, I already have the mating plug on the hitch of the tow vehicle. It is a Warn Winch disconnect.
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Finished installation with the propane tanks cleaned up and new OPD valves and hoses. Note I found some nice generic decals referrign to GVW limits, lug torquing, and e-brake use at a trailer store and stuck them on the hitch. Looks more factory?? The two big wires on the trailer jack are for the 7 pin trailer plug and the giant 12VDC supply
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Here is the wiring diagram I developed. double click on it and then you can zoom in and pan in a separate window. I know the debate about how the e-brake is wired and the possibility of having both batteries off. I intend to wire in a separate trailer brake battery in the future. I have a lot of stuff to get through and will refine later. Meanwhile I'll put a note in my tow vehicle to remember to have at least one trailer battery connected when driving so the e-brake will work. Interestingly, SS has the e-brake coming off the fridge wire like I have shown. They actually split the harness for it and I left that part alone to reuse on my setup. I'll divorce it when I get the separate trailer battery.
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Old 06-27-2010, 10:13 PM   #12
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Here is my Roof Vent Replacement

I had three Original Jensen roof vents on this trailer with light, fan, and power lift. All three had the original badly cracked and deteriorated covers taped up so they could not open. the gears to open them were stripped and the lens for the lights was badly yellowed. I found three new direct replacement vents, original style on e-bay. I decided to install them on this lovely 95 degree weekend!

I read many posts on how to get on top of one of these round sided trailers. I concluded from all the ideas that people used their own devices but all were mindfull of a few things. Stay on the rivits where there are supports underneath, spread the load if possible, stay off the ends.

My solution worked very well. I had to go up and down many times for each vent and had no problems. The pics are self explainatory. I used a straight edge razor with a screw driver handle style holder to scrape up the existing putty then lacquer thinner easily cleaned up the remainder. Other than having to drill 24 new holes for each vent they were completely interchangable with the existing ones. My trailer has aluminum C channel framing around each opening so self tapping screws would not go into it. Hence the drilling. Now I have 3 brand new roof vents!

I did consider better vents like the Maxx Air and Fantastic Fan but decided to stay original since my wall switches matched everything. Maybe later I can upgrade.

Here is my setup to get on the roof. 20Ft extension ladder taken apart into 2 ladders. Towels between the ladders and awning. Ladders touch awning only. Aluminum cross tube is held in place with tie downs on ladder rungs. A 2 by 4 would work good too. A 2 x 12 gang plank lays on top of the aluminum tube and the end of the plank on the roof is on a rivet line with a support under the riviets. So the whole system only touches the trailer on the awning and roof rivet line. The ladders are spaced so it is easy to cross from one ladder to the other. Worked good for me.
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close up of the ladder gang plank system
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One vent removed and 1/2 inch plywood to work off of and distribute load.
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1st vent in with putty under it and screwed down but not externally sealed yet.
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The rough openings cleaned up great with a razor blade and lacquer thinner.
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View showing how the original lids were taped down.
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View to the rear showing final sealing on the rear components. This picture also shows how bad this trailer is streaked on the sides. A lot of the pictures don't show the streaks. Exterior restoration is much later on my list. Functionallity is first.
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Same ladder setup used on the front. worked great.
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Old 06-29-2010, 08:24 AM   #13
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Boy, you are really doing a super job on this trailer! Hats off to you!
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Old 06-30-2010, 06:38 PM   #14
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The original batteries were small and the original box was badly deteriorated. I am up sizing to GP27s which will not fit in the frame rails like the recessed box did

This was also my first disappointment. My father's '75 had a raised box with more capacity. He went the 6V route in the 1980's and pleased with it. I knew I'd have to do what you have done (but had to acquire the skills or barter for).

It is auto switching from 120VAC to 12VDC to Gas. A great fridge! 4. The heavy wire harness will let the Deep Cycle trailer batteries bulk charge off of the truck when driving.

You just made the case for a three-way in not running propane while driving!!

My big 12VDC plug feeds power to the house and has a similar sized ground wire. When it is plugged in to the tow vehicle I can run the fridge, run the house, connect or disconnect one or both of my batteries, bulk charge my house batteries from the vehicle or bulk charge the vehicle batteries from the converter on the trailer. Lots of options.

Your thinking is invaluable. Someone else may have made a similar adaptation on these boards, but it's my first time to consider it at depth. Fantastic! We'll all of us be looking to see recovery time from that setup after some boondocking.

Here is the wiring diagram I developed.

I really enjoyed studying this. Made me want to run out the trailer that is no longer there in the drive.


Note I found some nice generic decals referrign to GVW limits, lug torquing, and e-brake use at a trailer store and stuck them on the hitch. Looks more factory??

Looks cool, no doubt about it. Nice reminders, too.

Corner of new junction box and wiring hold down clips. Note: I looped the trailer harness and tow vehicle cable in case I ever need more length or need to redo the wire ends. I have an extra foot plus on both wires just in case.

Others should know I've already agitated for a PP hitch and disc brakes. Glad to see that the present owner has the option, and a future owner would be very pleased as well. This is, IMO, a trailer impossible to replace; or, maybe we should say that the possibility of replacement is so small as to be all but. A sway-eliminating hitch makes this 8,000-lb GVWR trailer (approx 6800 empty [full water & propane]) more amenable to smaller TV's.

I'm a huge advocate of Do It Once, Do It Right which is why I find AIR full of great reading.


The rough openings cleaned up great with a razor blade and lacquer thinner

I used advice from AIR and added ACRYSOL Body Solvent plus plastic razor blades to my tool/supply kit. Have gotten plenty of use. MEK also has it's place.


Same ladder setup used on the front. worked great.

I was quite careful with mine (a multi-position type) and had no problems. On the other hand, an "experienced" tech left scratches . . . .

did consider better vents like the Maxx Air and Fantastic Fan but decided to stay original since my wall switches matched everything. Maybe later I can upgrade.

I bookmarked posts by "lewster" on this and A/C questions. Ken Wilson has a nice '79 gotten from his in-laws, and he's a whiz on A/C (on the List or on other RV boards). His comments about DOMETIC quality past and present causes me to think that keeping an old one running may be the better solution in some instances. It also gives me to think on a custom-formed metal cover . . in the meantime, some KRYLON "Fusion" in silver will give the shroud a factory look (1979 sales brochure) if you are so inclined.

Those plumbing stacks are new to me. Really cool looking, and I hope as tough as they appear. Mine were plastic, so I replaced with some VTS generic pieces that were lower profile (and they worked great in hot, damp windless summer weather as well as all others).

I pulled all covers on my roof and [1] resealed with DICOR after cleaning everything I could reach (reefer vent flue); or [2] with A/C went to a new thicker gasket. The dry rot of the old one wasn't apparent until we pulled it. Same was true for TV antenna where coax appeared okay until disassembly.

And, ALL Silver Streaks are "streaked" . . it's only a matter of how much. Try de-greasing (buffered acid products fine used carefully) and then some olive oil or kerosene to see how much shine comes up. "Shine" is easy . . depth of shine another question (A matte "glow" for the crowd around here).

Also, what was new to me was the lower painted panels. When I received the PO's 60+ photographs I thought it a spray bomb job, but the more I studied, the more I wondered if SS hadn't tried to soften the effect of height. Any report? Does the paint appear to have been factory, and how far underneath does it extend. I found I rather liked it, factory or not.

Great blend of work, photos, captions, descriptions. You can't add too much detail, IMO.

(And great to finally see the "hidden" port side of the trailer -- not included in PO photos -- so as to scope out SS way of setting up electrical/sewer access for a late model mid-bath.)

.
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