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Originally Posted by mrb9491
We are looking at an airstream where the owner reveals the exterior finish has been damaged by 7 years of exposure in Texas sun. Is this a big problem? How difficult or expensive is it to repair this exterior finish?
I am guessing that you are inquiring about the 2001 model in your profile. Should this be the case, I believe that the coach may have been manufactured around the time that Airstream began utilizing factory-coated aluminum which I have been told is more difficult to strip and/or repair. There are two factors that can influence the difficulty . . . the toughnes of the factory-coating as well as the mill-finish of the aluminum . . . the factory-coating can be difficult to remove and the mill-finish of the aluminum can make obtaining a uniform re-finish difficult.
There are several professional refinishers throughout North America, and the cost for refinishing can vary considerably based on the amount of work necessary . . . such as body repairs, finish abraisions that need extra work, amount of polishing/finish restoration necessary, and whether you wish to have new Plasticoat sprayed once the finish restoration is complete . . . the experience and reputation of the shop performing the work will also have an impact on the cost as well. Depending upon the above issues, I have spoken with owners who have been quoted from $125 to $295 per linear foot. I had my 1964
Overlander polished and Plasticoated several years ago, and due to a previous owners botched polish attempts, my cost was at the upper end of that spectrum. When I had my Overlander refinished, I went with the Ruths of P and S Trailer Service
and have been completely satisfied with the quality of their refinishing.
Good luck with your investigation!
P.S.: The photo below is of my Overlander after its refinishing, you may note that it isn't as shiny as some . . . I asked the Ruths to apply an "original sheen" finish so that the Overlander would look like I remembered it when it was factory new in 1964
The photo below is of the coach prior to having the exterior refinished: