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Old 11-27-2016, 08:41 PM   #1
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1967 30' Sovereign
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Hello all, water leak question

Hello all,
New to the forum and so please pardon if I rehash something that is thoroughly covered in a different thread that I have not found yet. I recently ( 4 days ago) picked up a 1967 sovereign and drove it back 14 hours to where I live. This airstream was my grandfather's and then my little sister had it for a few years.. I had a local Mechanic redo the brakes; bearings etc. It made the drive fine but after I parked it and went through it, it appears to need a fair amount of work. First question.. I notice what appears to be minor water staining down some of the interior skins not associated with windows..starting at a seam about halfway down the wall....where is this likely coming from? I'm starting to wonder if I should take on the daunting task of gutting and reinsulating. It also would allow for rewiring which it definitely needs. Thoughts? Thanks much and sorry for the long question
Cyrus
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Old 11-27-2016, 08:47 PM   #2
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Find a local RV shop with a Sealtech machine and get it pressure tested. That will get the shell watertight. Then go camping several times to get a feel for the changes you may want to make. What works? What doesn't? Then start your rehab.
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Old 11-27-2016, 09:00 PM   #3
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Fair enough. Needs several windows replaced.. I'm assuming I'll need to do that prior to pressure testing? Right now they are covered in clear plastic and aluminum taped
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Old 11-27-2016, 10:10 PM   #4
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Yep, get the windows and all the window/door gaskets replaced before getting it Sealtech'd.
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Old 11-27-2016, 10:40 PM   #5
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Thanks much! Any thoughts on taking off the interior skins to redo insulation and remove the old aluminum wiring? I know it's liable to start snowballing into ever bigger issues but I usually go by the old fix right fix it once philosophy
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Old 11-28-2016, 12:20 PM   #6
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Sounds like a project! Yes - do it once and do it right is a good motto.
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Old 11-28-2016, 12:27 PM   #7
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We just picked up a 2005 Safari last week. These guys are coming out to the house tomorrow morning and doing a leak test for $260. They're out of Tomball. I'll report back and let you know what the experience with them was like:

http://blackbirdrv.com/

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Old 11-28-2016, 12:31 PM   #8
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Pulling the interior skins off is tedious and dirty. If you are just replacing lines, you may be able to use the old lines to pull through new copper -- lots easier than pulling skin. As for insulation - it is probably in crappy shape but even with bright, new insulation, Airstreams are not really four season capable. My 86, with original insulation is good down to about 15f. Below that, even with the furnace and a couple of space heaters, life gets a mite brisk.
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Old 11-28-2016, 01:35 PM   #9
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Replacing plastic water lines with copper is possible without removing inside paneling. Replacing wiring by using old wires to pull new copper wire is very problematic for a couple of reasons. First, there is no conduit, so sheathed wires pass through holes at various places where they can bind up. Second, many wires are bundled together and at various places are taped together, so it's virtually impossible to pull single wires through the bundle. Third, some wires that serve multiple devices/outlets on the same circuit have hidden junctions behind paneling. In other words, if you choose to completely rewire, plan on removing the entire inside paneling.
I recently encountered a short to ground on a 12V wire. After much searching, I realized it would be easier (i.e.-avoid multiple panel removal) to run a completely new wire in a new location instead of trying to find the exact location of the short.
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Old 11-28-2016, 02:59 PM   #10
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Cyrus,
There are many "Ground Up" restoration videos here and on You-Tube. Spending some time watching those could help answer questions you haven't even thought of yet. But first get an idea of how far you intend to go and how much your budget will allow. In the end you could spend as much or more than what it costs for a new coach. However, you'll have a project you did and it most likely will be a better coach than anything new...if you have the budget and are willing to go that far with it. The next thing to consider is what you intend to do in the long run...pass it on down to other family members or sell it off. Each will dictate a different approach than the other. If you intend to fix it then sell it....consider resale every time you take out and replace. Because the future buyers will be comparing the cost of your '67 to the cost of a brand new unit. If you've put in things that are more personal and to your liking, they may have different ideas. What comes to mind right now are the folks who take out the bed and put in reclining chairs....or the folks who take out the 3-way refrigerator and replace it with a larger, but standard household 120V only refrigerator. (effectively eliminating any camping or boondocking outside of an established RV Park).

Good Luck....let us know how it goes and post some photos along the way.
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Old 11-29-2016, 07:43 AM   #11
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Thanks all for the Replies,
It is definitely a project and Im considering all the options I can and doing tons of research. Ill keep everyone posted as to what I am considering doing etc. My main issue at the moment is not having a dedicated space to work on it. The storage lot I have it in at the moment is not covered and if I go full on project mode Ill probably need to rent a covered place.
Thanks again all
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