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Old 05-07-2013, 07:14 PM   #71
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1964 22' Safari
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enosburg , Vermont
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A little on clecos, rivits and rivit holes. Like many post of advice we sometimes don't think to mention the fundimentals. Keep that in mind now, and especially down the road when you are helping someone out! I'm sure guilty. Cleco sizes to some extent are task specific. 1/8" dia cleco for a 1/8th rivet hole. 5/32, 3/16 and so on. Length is also important. To long for the jointing thickness they let your work shift around. To small a dia. for the hole they tend to pop out. It can get frustrating. I expect they are still the same as when I bought mine a 100yrs ago, color coded. Copper, black, silver, ect. all different sizes. 1/8" dia. is the one you will use the most & it can work on a 5/32 hole, keep the grip length 1/4" or < . I pointed out the 5/32 rivit hole for good reason. Most all the rivits you deal with will be 1/8 dia. and you will replace with 1/8 rivits. BUT, no mater how good you are at drilling out the old ones some of the old holes will be distorted. When you go to replace with a 1/8" dia rivit it will be loose, hang out or "break long" [down the road break long will be your new cuss word!] The only way to solve this problem is re bore with a 5/32 bit and use 5/32 rivits. The interior panel rivit holes in our safari were so worn from the bad axle I replaced most with 5/32. A lot of referance here to Aircraft Spruce. Well deserved, very good quality. When the time comes for rivits I would urge you to avoid the well known chain that has the BLUE 500 to a BOX at a low price. Buy quality rivits once or do it twice. Another lesson I learned the hard way!!
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Old 05-07-2013, 07:28 PM   #72
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Go girl, you are so impressive! My aunt had your spirit and can do attitude.

Upon his retirement, they got the bug to do Alaska from California with the truck camper she rebuilt for the occasion. Eighteen months of prepping the decrepit shell she found into a cozy mobile haven surmounted many of the same challenges you face; from shell to mechanicals to sewing new fabrics.

All the family still tell tales of her fixing an electrical issue on my uncle's dead truck beside the roadway in Yukon Territories with her newly acquired electrical prowess. He loved saying he took his own builder/mechanic/technician along for the trip since he didn't know a screwdriver from a can opener.
Great story! I love it! I just don't feel impressive. I am full of fear and self doubt and I think I just keep going forward out of sheer ignorance, but the positive comments sure do help.
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Old 05-07-2013, 07:38 PM   #73
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Originally Posted by putback View Post
A little on clecos, rivits and rivit holes. Like many post of advice we sometimes don't think to mention the fundimentals. Keep that in mind now, and especially down the road when you are helping someone out! I'm sure guilty. Cleco sizes to some extent are task specific. 1/8" dia cleco for a 1/8th rivet hole. 5/32, 3/16 and so on. Length is also important. To long for the jointing thickness they let your work shift around. To small a dia. for the hole they tend to pop out. It can get frustrating. I expect they are still the same as when I bought mine a 100yrs ago, color coded. Copper, black, silver, ect. all different sizes. 1/8" dia. is the one you will use the most & it can work on a 5/32 hole, keep the grip length 1/4" or < . I pointed out the 5/32 rivit hole for good reason. Most all the rivits you deal with will be 1/8 dia. and you will replace with 1/8 rivits. BUT, no mater how good you are at drilling out the old ones some of the old holes will be distorted. When you go to replace with a 1/8" dia rivit it will be loose, hang out or "break long" [down the road break long will be your new cuss word!] The only way to solve this problem is re bore with a 5/32 bit and use 5/32 rivits. The interior panel rivit holes in our safari were so worn from the bad axle I replaced most with 5/32. A lot of referance here to Aircraft Spruce. Well deserved, very good quality. When the time comes for rivits I would urge you to avoid the well known chain that has the BLUE 500 to a BOX at a low price. Buy quality rivits once or do it twice. Another lesson I learned the hard way!!
Ok, I am still not exactly sure. I ordered some of all size clecos from VTS. I didn't know about the Aircraft Spruce at the time and yes, they are color coded. Do I need them now while taking apart? Or when I put back? Sorry if that is a dumb question. I am taking down all the interior walls, everything, almost done. Then, I want to remove subfloor. Then clean out that stuff, yuck! Then, drop the bellypan, then detach frame from shell. I am not exactly sure how I am going to do all that. I just keep reading thread after thread everyday. Hoping I figure it out when I get to that. I guess if I panic between now and before I take the shell off, I will load it and take it someone who knows what they are doing. At this point, I am still under the delusion I can do this. :-)
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Old 05-07-2013, 08:25 PM   #74
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enosburg , Vermont
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You will absolutely need the clecos to reattach the interior panels, only way to hold them exactly in place to re rivit. There are no dumb questions here. The clecos will be somewhat usefull to remove the upper interior skins. But PLEASE don't try that alone. Those aluminum sheets are huge and easy to damage at best, dangerious at worst. Get help for that step. Real easy to make a trip to the E R for a little sewing session. You don't have to do much floor removal before you lift the body off. In fact its much easier to do that after you lift the body and pull the remaining trailer out from under it. There's many ways to do it. I'll post mine later, then you decide.
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Old 05-07-2013, 08:45 PM   #75
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You will absolutely need the clecos to reattach the interior panels, only way to hold them exactly in place to re rivit. There are no dumb questions here. The clecos will be somewhat usefull to remove the upper interior skins. But PLEASE don't try that alone. Those aluminum sheets are huge and easy to damage at best, dangerious at worst. Get help for that step. Real easy to make a trip to the E R for a little sewing session. You don't have to do much floor removal before you lift the body off. In fact its much easier to do that after you lift the body and pull the remaining trailer out from under it. There's many ways to do it. I'll post mine later, then you decide.
Ok, wow, I have tried to get down the upper interior skin, but it was hard on me and I got tired. I will get help for the rest of it. I don't plan on putting back the same interior skin. I am going use something else. I think I understand it better now, I use the clecos to temporarily hold panels until I rivet them back. Right? Yeah, I'd like to see your photos.
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:31 PM   #76
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That's right. Clecos just temporarily hold things in place so you don't need four hands to hold them up! They're pretty handy things to have when you're rebuilding & riveting. Here is a picture of clecos around my doorway:Click image for larger version

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Old 05-07-2013, 11:03 PM   #77
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You may already know this, but one of the biggest local users of "clecos" may be out at your local neighborhood airport - if there is one nearby. I'm not talking about Hartsfeld International - but your local small-town airport. Lot's of folks who own airplanes, especially "home-built" airplanes, use clecos and often they (the clecos, not the pilots!) are passed on to others at a far cheaper price then buying them new. That's why someone mentioned "Aircraft Spruce" which is a huge supply house for all things that home-builders and people who work on small airplanes use. Those local pilots and mechanics also know all about the in's and out's of riveting and such. After all, riveting two pieces of aluminum sheet together is the same process, regardless of what the vehicle is! Remember, our Airstreams were born from jets... well, from piston airplanes, but airplanes nonetheless!

Just a thought, but it may be you've already purchased what you need from VTS. Of course, if you aren't near a local, small airport... then 'never mind!'
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Old 05-08-2013, 07:39 AM   #78
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Get you one of these kits and maybe a pack or two of extra fasteners. You would waste more gas driving to the airport and time trying to find someone to sell you used ones at the Airport than the cost of this kit.

http://www.summitracing.com/parts/sum-g1850/overview/

http://www.summitracing.com/search/d...keyword=clecos

Perry
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Old 05-08-2013, 09:32 AM   #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OilnH2o View Post
You may already know this, but one of the biggest local users of "clecos" may be out at your local neighborhood airport - if there is one nearby. I'm not talking about Hartsfeld International - but your local small-town airport. Lot's of folks who own airplanes, especially "home-built" airplanes, use clecos and often they (the clecos, not the pilots!) are passed on to others at a far cheaper price then buying them new. That's why someone mentioned "Aircraft Spruce" which is a huge supply house for all things that home-builders and people who work on small airplanes use. Those local pilots and mechanics also know all about the in's and out's of riveting and such. After all, riveting two pieces of aluminum sheet together is the same process, regardless of what the vehicle is! Remember, our Airstreams were born from jets... well, from piston airplanes, but airplanes nonetheless!

Just a thought, but it may be you've already purchased what you need from VTS. Of course, if you aren't near a local, small airport... then 'never mind!'
We do have a small local airport and we also have Maule Air here near Spence Field, but I did not realize the connection until now. They may be a good source if I need more and if I have questions on how to use them. Thanks for the tip.
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Old 05-08-2013, 11:40 AM   #80
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Just a little cosmetic work. My daddy pressure washed the Airstream today. I need to think of a name soon. :-)
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Old 05-08-2013, 12:43 PM   #81
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Just a little cosmetic work. My daddy pressure washed the Airstream today. I need to think of a name soon. :-)
I see in the pictures that you have a small jack stand under the Airstream fold out steps probably to stabilize or level the step. The Airstream foldout step is great piece of engineering that has been around for a long time. One problem is that over time the lower step fold up arms will wear a groove in the aluminum housing of the upper step and will cause the lower step to swing in and tilt downward. There is a fix for this by cutting and installing a small piece of 1/4" aluminum stock to the upper step housing to act a s brace for the lower step. Maybe someone can post a picture or a thread where is is covered in more detail.

But my main point in posting is to alert you of the potential danger of using a jack stand or any type of brace on the Airstream steps. These steps are designed to operate without any type of brace and can fold in and collapse at times when someone steps down on the step caused by the tension being released where it housed in the frame of the trailer due to the jack stand. I know that is probably confusing but I have seen this happen and the potential of a serious fall can occur. In the interim I would suggest a separate standalone temporary step arrangement similar the steps I made for my 1976 A/S attached below. This is nothing more than 2 wooden boxes with the smaller one sitting on top of the larger one cut to size to allow for an easy 2 step arrangement into the A/S. The top step should be attached to the bottom so that it will not move. In the long run this will be an easier means of going in and out of the trailer as you work on on it and may prevent a possible bad accident if the old Airstream steps collapsed on you.

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Old 05-08-2013, 12:54 PM   #82
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I see in the pictures that you have a small jack stand under the Airstream fold out steps probably to stabilize or level the step. The Airstream foldout step is great piece of engineering that has been around for a long time. One problem is that over time the lower step fold up arms will wear a groove in the aluminum housing of the upper step and will cause the lower step to swing in and tilt downward. There is a fix for this by cutting and installing a small piece of 1/4" aluminum stock to the upper step housing to act a s brace for the lower step. Maybe someone can post a picture or a thread where is is covered in more detail.

But my main point in posting is to alert you of the potential danger of using a jack stand or any type of brace on the Airstream steps. These steps are designed to operate without any type of brace and can fold in and collapse at times when someone steps down on the step caused by the tension being released where it housed in the frame of the trailer due to the jack stand. I know that is probably confusing but I have seen this happen and the potential of a serious fall can occur. In the interim I would suggest a separate standalone temporary step arrangement similar the steps I made for my 1976 A/S attached below. This is nothing more than 2 wooden boxes with the smaller one sitting on top of the larger one cut to size to allow for an easy 2 step arrangement into the A/S. The top step should be attached to the bottom so that it will not move. In the long run this will be an easier means of going in and out of the trailer as you work on on it and may prevent a possible bad accident if the old Airstream steps collapsed on you.
I have actually thought about that. I just haven't made up new stairs yet. My steps are already broken and when we take the frame and shell off, I thought we would fix them then. Thanks for the tip!
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Old 05-08-2013, 01:21 PM   #83
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Can I just say you're my new hero????! I'm reading this thread with such inspiration. My husband & I just got a '57 Overlander....neither of us are handy folks, but we're looking at a complete restoration....
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Old 05-08-2013, 03:22 PM   #84
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Hey girl great progress! I am on hold until next week waiting for the available storage locker. In the mean time I am working on the last remaining item on my frame supply list which is the trailer electrical pigtail. Make a list of things you will be needing for yours and on those days of massive rain or large groups of young minds you can concentrate on the logistics part. Are you replacing all of the insulation? If so take down the inner shell before the frame then you can start removing the frame. You do not have to remove anything from the frame but the few wires from frame to lights. Floor belly pan and all can and are easier to remove after the shell is off. You have to clear the wheel wells to get the frame out and you are going to find that there are 2 or 3 hidden rivets by the door which you may have to cut just remember to be safe and keep the kids away during the shell removal. Do not need distractions!
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