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Old 06-16-2007, 10:42 AM   #1
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1965 17' Caravel
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Popping Interior Rivets in Maine!!

Well, I've just put 1000 miles on my restored 1965 Caravel and am in Maine. I noticed one interior rivet over the door has backed out and the new paint is cracked around most of them. Any ideas why this is happening? It has a new Henschen Duratorque axle (3000#) supplied by Inland RV (Andy), new Ford F-150 shocks, new Goodyear Marathon Tires (running 35#) that were spin balanced. The weight distribution system is a Hidden Hitch 550# rated bars with sway control - the tow vehicle is a GMC Yukon. The only other thing that may have affected it is that I replaced the whole lower panel behind the door......could this be from new stresses? I talked to Randy at Airstream customer service and Steve at P&S Trailer Service and they couldn't figure out why this is occurring. Any ideas out there?
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Old 06-16-2007, 11:02 AM   #2
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Was the original axel rated for 3000 lbs?
When the panel was replaced was the trailer sitting on the wheels or was it on jack stands (maybe a little bend in the frame)?

I am throwing these things out because it sounds to me like you have a good setup for your trailer.
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Old 06-16-2007, 01:17 PM   #3
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Doesn't sound serious or unusual at this point. If you pop several rivets,then youmay have a problem.
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Old 06-16-2007, 03:55 PM   #4
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Wrong menu item?

Try popping corn instead! Use butter and salt! It tastes better than rivets w/ new paint! Trust me! Ed
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Old 06-16-2007, 04:02 PM   #5
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Now to the serious side...

I've read a lot about the flexing these trailers do and if the paint is cracking at the rivets and some are snapping off it sounds like too stiff of a suspension or perhaps the frame flexing as it travels is causing the trouble. Seems I read somewhere that the rivets should be painted after they where installed. Could it be that all the rivets have the chance to flex and the new paint does not? Just a few thoughts. Ed
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Old 06-16-2007, 04:36 PM   #6
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1961 16' Bambi
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A Few More Quetions

  1. Did you purchase/obtain your Caravel in the vicinity of where you live?
  2. If not, was the weather change great?
I ask because my Bambi lived in Tennesee and when I adopted it I took it to the desert of California. I never knew aluminum could shrink and stretch. Guess what? It does. So I did end up with a couple of popped rivets.

Also I believe simply changing from an old, tired and dried out axle to a nice new springy one would affect the skins. After all, the old axle gradually aged and then you give it an instant face lift. Not fun I am sure.

Drill out the old, pop in the new!

How long have you had your trailer?

And of course, we need pictures!!!!!!!!!
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Old 06-16-2007, 04:41 PM   #7
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We have traveled thru Maine and Nova Scotia and some of the roads were not that good when we went. We also had signifigant damage to rivet heads in our 31 foot 1977 on our trip. I never rode in the trailer when we were going but it must have been pretty rough back there. I have experienced the same thing in other locations when we have been going thru construction. Only 27 of the 41 trailers made it from Capetown to Cario. Nothing is indestructable.
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