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Old 08-28-2016, 08:42 AM   #1
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1978 Argosy 27
1000 Islands , ontario
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Posts: 11
1978 Argosy Reno - Now What?

Hello,

We just purchased a 27' 1978 Argosy with the plan to spruce it up and get it on the road. Needless to say after removing the carpet and some cabinets we noticed a few issues and whole thing is now gutted. (pics below)

We are at a point now where we can replace parts of the floor that are rotted, clean it up, paint and move on or we could replace the whole floor and remove the interior skins and do the whole shebang.

I think we have decided to remove the floor, there were some major issues in the rear bath (this seems to be a common problem) that will require some frame work, so we might as well see whats under there and replace the insulation, etc. (I also think that by removing the old floor it will take care of a lot of the musty smell.
My questions regarding this is: 1) is this a straightforward process? Lift up the panels, cut new ones, seal the edges and screw down? or is there something I am missing? 2) Where do I source the fasteners? Can I get these at Home Depot or are they specific to Airstreams?

Now with the interior skins, they look to be in good shape, some minor corrosion where the kitchen was, but once the new cabinets are in you will never see it, its more what is behind the walls, THERE IS SO MUCH MOUSE POOP!!!! I'm not sure I will ever be comfortable sleeping in the trailer knowing what is behind there. My questions here are: 1) is it worth the effort, and I am sure this will not be an easy undertaking, to remove, clean and re-install the skins? 2) honestly, how hard of a job is this? we are pretty handy, but neither of us has any experience with rivets. 3) what is behind the interior end caps? They seem to be one piece of plastic, are there aluminium panels behind or would we need to fabricate those? YIKES! So many questions.

Thanks in advance for your opinions and suggestions. I am sure I will be posting often.
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Old 08-28-2016, 10:01 AM   #2
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1974 27' Overlander
Baltimore , Maryland
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There's a good chance the smell is in the insulation in the walls, especially if it's due to mice. Worth replacing if you have a smell. Rivets are no big deal to remove/replace, just time consuming. I used a rivet remover attachment for my drill that makes removing lots of pop rivets much easier. I replaced all the rivets with a Stanley pop rivet tool I bought from the hardware store. IMO, if you're going to do it, do it right the first time so you don't have to do it twice.

The plastic end caps are the interior skin. If you intend to remove them and not replace them, you would need to fabricate new panels. That's a tricky job, but lots of folks have done it successfully. You should be able to find detailed instructions on the forum if you want to try it.

I suggest Vintage Trailer Supply for sourcing floor fasteners. They have both regular elevator bolts and the floor repair screws that you can use if you don't have access from below.
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Old 08-28-2016, 10:50 AM   #3
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1978 Argosy 27
1000 Islands , ontario
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Thanks, I am leaning towards removing everything and starting fresh. I am just a bit freaked out by the thought of it
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Old 08-28-2016, 11:01 AM   #4
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1972 31' Sovereign
Lexington , Minnesota
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Do some quality reading in renovation threads here on floor replacement, inner skin removal, etc. It Will HELP! We did a full gut job and renovation on our '72 31 ft Sovereign. Inner skins are not hard to get out, but I'd suggest 2 people because on some of the longer pieces, 2 people can handle it easier so it doesn't land on your toes. Mark placement on the back side with marker including orientation to make them easier to get back in. Our insulation held lots of mouse poop, tunnels, and tree nuts, as well as smell. Very worth it to get it out. We re-insulated with fiberglass although there are many options.
There is insulation but no ribs behind the interior end caps. They come out and go back in in one piece. Took 4 people to get ours back in correctly (I'm very short - taller people work better!).
Vintage Trailer Supply, Out of Doors Mart, Inland RV, Ace Hardware are some places we found what we needed for the trailer.
Our thread is Little Girl Refurb, but there are many others, and all make worth while reading. We continue to learn new ways to do things!
Good luck and keep posting!

Kay
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Old 08-28-2016, 11:37 AM   #5
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1973 25' Tradewind
Beautiful , Oregon
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Well your work is just beginning but lots of help here to get you through it, and keep you strong. Kay of Minno was a great help to me in my restoration along with others. They have a nice thread

Here is one of my threads for 1973 Tradewind restoration reno
If want to see a thread on 73 reno go to below.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f44/...ab-143656.html

Tony
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Old 08-28-2016, 05:58 PM   #6
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1972 31' Sovereign
Lexington , Minnesota
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Tony's is also beautiful and beautifully written. Toastie has an excellent thread also of his reno. There are many others...

Kay
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Old 08-29-2016, 07:14 AM   #7
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1978 Argosy 27
1000 Islands , ontario
Join Date: Dec 2015
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Thank you for all the great information. I guess lots of reading is in my future before I tackle this.
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Old 08-30-2016, 11:10 PM   #8
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2008 19' Bambi
Ste-Julie , Quebec
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Argosy renovation

I have renovated a 24 foot 1976 Argosy. It took more than 500 hours. By chance, I lost my job and I was able to devote myself full-time to my project.(Finally, I found a better job). There are two significant challenges when we're renovating an Airtream: find great ideas that respect the basic concept and have the empowered to achieve! Personally, I am discouraged several times. My best source of inspiration has been Christopher Deam. I encourage you to watch the video that has been my main source of inspiration. In my opinion, he understood the principle which inspired Wally Byam and has push the concept 20 years ahead of the competitor.

http://www.Ted.com/talks/christopher..._the_airstream

Here's what I could realise with limited resource…
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