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Old 01-20-2010, 08:24 AM   #1
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Looking at 1970 Land Yacht Need Help

I have been a "Lurker" for several months, and I am finally ready to take the plunge. iam looking at 1970 Land Yacht on Saturday. What sort of things should I be looking for to insure my renovation doesnt become a complete rebuild. While I am pretty handy, I dont want to get into the frame and shell.

I plan on redoing the cabinets and new flooring etc.

Any help would be great.

Thanks
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Old 01-20-2010, 08:33 AM   #2
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I have been a "Lurker" for several months, and I am finally ready to take the plunge. iam looking at 1970 Land Yacht on Saturday. What sort of things should I be looking for to insure my renovation doesnt become a complete rebuild. While I am pretty handy, I dont want to get into the frame and shell.

I plan on redoing the cabinets and new flooring etc.

Any help would be great.

Thanks
Check the trailer for rear end separation, bad axles, tires, rusty wheels, bad exterior gaskets, missing rivets especially below the front window, body damage, windows that are plastic, warped entrance door, sticky interior walls, and general neglect and/or abuse.

Andy
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Old 01-20-2010, 08:42 AM   #3
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Thanks I know it need tires. Not sure I follow rear end separation? Could you explain?
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Old 01-20-2010, 08:53 AM   #4
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If you've been lurking for several months, you should already know the typical things that the trailer could be *inflicted* with - axles, floor rot, rear-end sag, leaks, window fog, etc.... You'll want to make sure these are in order before embarking on the cabinets/flooring. You don't want a leak (from old gaskets and/or failing seals) or busting rivets (from worn axles) to ruin all the work you put forth!

After reading posts here for about a year, I haven't noticed anything causing a shell off renovation except major flooring problems. Though there are other issues that are a major PITA - like repairing rear-end sag. Axles are almost a given for a 70's trailer and it does take some effort. The other things like replacing gaskets, updating plumbing, updating umbilical, replacing Univolt, etc take a little time and cash but aren't otherwise too taxing for a handy-person! And you can finish the cosmetic updates like curtains & upholstry as needed - like your intentions with the cabinets and flooring.

Good luck and post some pics of your *find* if you move forward with the purchase!

Laura
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Old 01-20-2010, 08:56 AM   #5
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Check for floor rot around the exterior walls and bathroom/kitchen area. Look for owner applied caulk-or other signs of leaks. Check for Olympic rivets on the outside. Verify all systems work don't take owners word for it, they may not know it is broken. Share pictures..
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Old 01-20-2010, 08:58 AM   #6
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Thanks I know it need tires. Not sure I follow rear end separation? Could you explain?
Two person job to diagnose: one person standing on bumper and able to jump up-n-down on bumper. Second person standing nearby watching to see if any gap between top of bumper and bottom of shell opens up. There should not be any substantial gap between the two.

Do a quick google search (using link at top of the forum) on rear end sag and you'll find lots of info! Actually, search for things like buying vintage trailer, tips for buying trailer, etc and you'll find that questions similar to yours answered. There's lots of info on this forum but you have to search for it!

Laura
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Old 01-20-2010, 09:03 AM   #7
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Check for floor rot around the exterior walls and bathroom/kitchen area. Look for owner applied caulk-or other signs of leaks. Check for Olympic rivets on the outside. Verify all systems work don't take owners word for it, they may not know it is broken. Share pictures..
Best advice - owners are not always aware of the problems. They aren't necessarily trying to be deceptive - but they just don't know what is needed. My trailers prior owner had NO idea that the axles were shot. I guess he thought the broken, interior rivets and hole in the ceiling at the divider were just coincidence. But he really didn't know the cause and I found out after my purchase! I didn't do my homework either! I didn't know a thing about the Univolt (or why you want one -or some type of converter/charger) - and neither did the prior owner. Being on shore power 24/7 doesn't alert you to why it is of value I guess. So, his belief that all was good with the trailer was incorrect after all....

Do your homework and know what to expect! Knowledge is the deal.

Laura
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Old 01-20-2010, 01:15 PM   #8
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Wow I have read alot today about rear separation or rear sag (as it was called in on topic).

As I read today I want to confirm some of what I read:
1) Rear Separation: Test is to observe someone jumping on bumber and watch for separation. Preventative is Wheel, Axel and Hub balancing (right?)
2) Axel replacement: No sure what to test or what to look for. Axel replacement is fix.

I am not sure of the history of this trailer and will post pictures once I get them.

Also the rear separation seems to happen more on rear bathroom (which this is) seems to be caused by vibration and unbalanced rear load, possible from holding tanks. Would traveling with empty tanks help? Just a thought from an uneducated possible new owner.......
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Old 01-20-2010, 01:23 PM   #9
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Unless they have been replaced, it's a fair bet that all the major appliances are finished, or very nearly.

By that I mean the furnace (~$600), the refer (~$1,000), and the water heater (~$500). The AC (if it has it) is easily checked, and may or may not be done.
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Old 01-20-2010, 01:29 PM   #10
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Yea from what I have gathered oven is broke, no big deal replace with microwave. It doesn't have a frig, could I not use a "college" size refrig combo with an inverter of some sorts. Furnance I planned on using in summer months, but during cold weather why not use a plug in heater.

AC can be replaced, planned on that

I want to use as soon as possible for summer travel. Would what i suggested work as far as appliance's go?
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Old 01-20-2010, 02:22 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by F250PUP View Post
Wow I have read alot today about rear separation or rear sag (as it was called in on topic).

As I read today I want to confirm some of what I read:
1) Rear Separation: Test is to observe someone jumping on bumber and watch for separation. Preventative is Wheel, Axel and Hub balancing (right?)
2) Axel replacement: No sure what to test or what to look for. Axel replacement is fix.

I am not sure of the history of this trailer and will post pictures once I get them.

Also the rear separation seems to happen more on rear bathroom (which this is) seems to be caused by vibration and unbalanced rear load, possible from holding tanks. Would traveling with empty tanks help? Just a thought from an uneducated possible new owner.......

Bout half-way down the page in the following link is a graphic for what you need to look at to determine what kind of shape your axles are in...
Dura Torque Axle

I think a quick gauge (for a 70's trailer) can be made by assessing the distance between your wheel and the wheel well; you should have a few inches there. When I looked at mine, the wheel well was about an inch higher than my hubcaps. As Andy told me on my first picture post, my axles were "shot". And indeed, they were shot. After replacing them, my trailer sat a good 2.5" higher! Once you post a picture, someone will surely give you an assessment on your axle/clearance!

Also, I think the rear sag is/was partly due (in addition to your list) to poor design. I think I have the start of some sag - I see some caulk along the bumper and it is cracked - but I'm ignoring it for now. There's only so much you can deal with!

Laura
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Old 01-20-2010, 09:06 PM   #12
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New issue with the proposed land yacht. the guy who has it stated I should repack the bearings before i tow it....and suggested i pick up with a flat bed. Thoughts or advice ?
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Old 01-20-2010, 10:52 PM   #13
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New issue with the proposed land yacht. the guy who has it stated I should repack the bearings before i tow it....and suggested i pick up with a flat bed. Thoughts or advice ?
Water can collect in the bearings, especially if the trailer has not moved for a long time.

Repacking the bearings and replacing the grease seals, would assure you of being able to tow the trailer ok.

Andy
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Old 01-20-2010, 11:16 PM   #14
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Well, if you are planning on buying it, you better ask yourself if it's safe to drive home (tires, brakes lights, etc), and if not, a flat bed tow could be the way to go.

But you haven't even seen it yet, could this be the first trailer you're looking at? Take your time, and look at a bunch is my best advice. What seems to be a little work to be done can well be a LOT, in a trailer that old.

By looking at more, you'll have a better idea of the market, and who knows, you might just find a really nice one, where some of the work needed has already been done by a caring owner.

Just a thought, do as you please, of course...
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