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Old 05-11-2005, 10:33 AM   #1
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1953 Clipper exterior damage

There is a 1953 Clipper on eBay I may be interested in bidding on but I want to understand what I'm getting into before I bid. The seller claims:

...looks to be a little on the rough side needs total restoration. It has great lines and can be an easy restore. the few tears in the side can be patched and riveted and once polished will look beautiful...

As you can see from the attached photo below, it seems to me that this project would be more than an "easy restore."

Any thoughts on what it would take (labor hours, parts and $$) to restore this exterior damage?
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Old 05-11-2005, 10:53 AM   #2
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If the photo is the worst of the damage, your talking about A LOT of money and tons of labor, just to repair what you can see. Looks like a nightmare to me or maybe just a career job . My experience comes from working on and restoring Land Rovers (aluminum body) and all the segmented panels that are shown in the photo would have to be replaced.I would think that the body and frame would be the two most important items to be found in the best possiable condition. Andy would be a great one to respond to this.
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Old 05-11-2005, 11:17 AM   #3
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Poor guy just finished the Bambi and you are looking on Ebay?

Needs at least complete new end section. With the holes you can be sure it needs a new floor. The top surface of the frame is very likly deteriorated from the fiberglass wicking the water from the rotted floor and holding it against the frame. Run away unless you are going to collect a few of these and make one trailer from the parts or sell the parts. This will never see the road again short of $20,000. Most of us want a 13 panel but this one is gone.

Lots of 2024T3
All new Floor and covering
New Applicances (Fridge, heat, water heater, fresh tank, grey tank, black tank, pumps, toilet, ect)
New Tires and Wheels
New axel brake plates drums (springs may be OK)
New interior
Frame repair
Belly pan will be brittle and need replacing


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Old 05-11-2005, 11:33 AM   #4
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I have seen pics of the interior of this trailer (supplied by the seller). It is in equally bad shape. Expect near-total floor replacement due to long term water leaks, no interior appliances, broken windows, and not much furniture that is salvageable. My feeling is that this is a $500 parts trailer.

The seller wrote: "I expect the airstream to sell for around 3000 give or take a thousand. If not I will restore it and sell it for 15K. This is a great money making opportunity I just don't have the time or space this summer."

I agree with over59: the trailer would need at least $15-20k to be restored.
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Old 05-11-2005, 11:50 AM   #5
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This one I like. http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eB...category=50063
Someone buy it.
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Old 05-11-2005, 12:30 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rluhr
I have seen pics of the interior of this trailer (supplied by the seller).
Rick, would you mind emailing me the photos?
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Old 05-11-2005, 12:36 PM   #7
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Question Thumbs down!

I hope this doesn't offend, but I'm incredulous at this auction.

Well, Rich, I wonder how this will be scored on the Ebay watch column in your magazine? Could you post the pics? I"m dying to see the inside!

$3000 for that thing? It's a heap of dented aluminum and a toilet! That's close to what we paid for ours, and even with its problems, it's a far cry from this! I though someone was crazy to bid over $800 for it! You'd have to be truly desperate for a 50s trailer to take this one. It'd be easier to build a new one from scratch! This one is just plain gross!

Mary
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Old 05-11-2005, 03:50 PM   #8
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Interior pics

OK, you asked for it. Note the can of Body Filler in the entryway ... gives you confidence in bidding, doesn't it?
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Old 05-11-2005, 03:56 PM   #9
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Yukionna, why?
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Old 05-11-2005, 06:59 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minnie's Mate
Yukionna, why?
No need to ask "why" as I won't be bidding on this trailer. Thanks for everyone's input, though! And thanks to Rich for posting the photos of the "glamorous" interior!
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Old 05-11-2005, 08:21 PM   #11
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I had noticed the trailer spotlighted by Over59 when browsing through eBay. Though I have to wonder, if someone is trying to sell what they genuinely consider to be a decent coach, why do they post pictures filled with their "messes" displayed? This looks like a fairly nice trailer inside, yet there, spoiling the appeal, is a messy bed, "stuff" around the dinette, and so on. My instinct is to click off and pass it by. I am sure that savvy buyers disregard this, but I suspect I am not alone in this reaction. If I see mess on the surface, I suspect hidden messes other places. I just don't get it. Someone needs to offer an "ebay 101" school for sellers. As I see it, it's rather like selling a house: when you spruce up your "street appeal" and simplify/clean up the interior, you can usually get a pretty "cheap" increase in your selling price. So, why all the messy. . .to awful. . .shots? Hope I haven't offended anyone with my thoughts. Off topic, I guess, but I have to wonder.
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Old 05-11-2005, 08:42 PM   #12
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That trailer doesn't look so bad.My Overlander was in worse condition and I hope to get done for about 10000.I wish I had found a trailer with 11 panel ends as all pieces are flat and easy to replace.A great project for a young fellow who wants to hone his riveting skills.
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Old 05-12-2005, 07:50 AM   #13
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Greg, I think the reason that we are all shying away is that the damage which is visible is likely to be only the tip of the iceberg. Unfortunately, the seller is emphasizing that there is some riveting to be done, when in reality that is going to be only 5% of the job at hand.

1) The dented panels undoubtedly leak. This implies that the floor has rotted, a near-certainty in any trailer of this vintage that has been left outside. So you've got a major floor replacement, and probably serious frame work to be done as well. Right there you've got 50-100 hours, easily.
2) There are no appliances or fixtures visible except the toilet. Replacing heater, range, water pump, faucet, etc. gets expensive as you probably know!
3) The windows are broken and again probably leaking. More damage and tricky fixes
4) Running gear is probably trashed. Axle, brakes, wheels, tires ...
5) It is unknown whether the ribs of the body are straight, which means the scope of the bodywork may extend far beyond merely riveting on panels.
6) The furniture is of uncertain condition, but I would expect it to need extensive work.
7) Refrigerator, Zolatone, floor covering, upholstery, countertop, foam, 12v lighting (inside and out), wiring, plumbing, hitch, gas lines, propane tanks, vents, battery, Univolt, belly pan ... all of these items probably need replacement.

I would amazed if anyone could do a "restoration" on a trailer this far gone for $10,000. I would also be suspicious of it. Parts alone would reach that figure.
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Old 05-12-2005, 08:06 AM   #14
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That is roughly what I have estimated the cost of my Overlander refit.I had to replace everything including frame and running gear.
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