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Old 11-13-2012, 08:54 PM   #1
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1968 30' Sovereign
Rowlett , Texas
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 23
newbie with a lot of questions???

I just purchased a 68' international 30'. Everything in it still works on the interior, and is original with exception of the water heater and front dinette. The first thing i did was remove the front dinette so i could access the water tank, and pump to clean up and make sure its in working order. Since this is my first trailer i am working my way thru the systems to see where they are and how they work.

Question 1: Is there a good place to find good affordable new appliances and parts?

2: Can some one tell me how to find out where to learn what parts were original(exterior driving lights, have four different covers)?

3: What converter/inverter(not sure what one is which yet) is enough powr to run this size unit?

4: Does remodeling the inside not back to as close to original as possible hurt the resale alot?

5: Im looking to gut the bathroom, where would the best place to buy replacement fiberglass/plastic shells to install back?

Im sure i have more but cant think of them at the moment
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Old 11-13-2012, 09:53 PM   #2
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1972 25' Tradewind
Hopkins , Minnesota
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 456
Welcome to the Forum! You will find a great deal of information to dig through on this site...and a lot of people to help you along on this journey. I'm not the most experienced, but I have been doing a lot of research on the Forum since starting my renovation of a '72 Trade Wind. I think I can tell you that most people who get into old Airstreams, do not do it for the potential resale value. They do it for the love of the Airstream. And unless your '68 was nearly un-used and hermetically sealed in storage, there is probably a lot of work to be done that you have not discovered yet...especially if you plan to update the interior.

First and foremost - treat everything as if it is no longer available...especially old bathroom parts. They are no longer made. You may be able to find some things on E-Bay...but don't count on it. Interior fiberglass and 'plastic' end caps are no longer available. Plastic trim pieces, tambour doors...lots and lots of stuff...are no longer made. So be very very careful before you start tearing things apart. If your bath is in need of replacement...then you can almost count on the floor beneath it being damaged and need replacement too...which then leads to finding other floor damage....and HOLD ON TO YOUR HAT....cuz it just keeps going and going and going. Hopefully, you are in it for the love of it and the long haul.

There are several sites where you can find new parts and appliances. InlandRV.com / Vintageairstream.com / VintageRV.com....and others.

For everything you decide to replace, there will be numerous opinions on what you should replace it with. Gotta do your research and find someone you trust. There are volunteer Airstream inspectors on this site who will gladly help you go over your 'project' and decide what needs to be done...what is possible. They will probably also be able to help you with identifying original and non-original parts. Lights are 'tending' to go LED these days...and there are companies out there supplying replacements.

Your converter is the main brain of your electrical system. Progressive Dynamics is a popular brand....but there are others. And the number of amps/features you need depends on what kind of camping you are going to be doing. Are you going to be hooked up to power most of the time? Or are you going to be boon-docking in the wilderness?

I'm sure many others will chime in here... this is just a start of your adventure. Post pictures of everything. TAKE pictures of everything....document everything....measure everything....you will be glad you did.

Good Luck!
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Old 11-13-2012, 11:51 PM   #3
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2009 27' FB International
Los Angeles , California
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Welcome to the forum... the adventure begins!
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Old 11-14-2012, 12:17 AM   #4
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1966 24' Tradewind
1995 34' Excella
Lynchburg , Virginia
Join Date: Sep 2009
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Congrats on your new to you 68 and welcome to the forums. 68 was the last year of the curved (Phillips) window and one of the last years with real wood cabinets.

Study the forum in detail. All the info you need is here. What ever problems that you run into have already been solved by somebody else. But remember that there is more than one way to solve a problem, so your new way may be better. However remember that "new solutions have new problems".

There is a place called PPL that does a big mail order business in Texas. If you are ordering appliances, they would be a good source.

Since you live in Texas and there are going to be a number of rallys going on between now and the end of the year, I recommend going to at least one of these rallys so you can meet some airstream folks and see some airstreams.

Your life will be forever changed.

Dan
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Old 11-14-2012, 07:51 AM   #5
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Corona , California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dereks57 View Post
I just purchased a 68' international 30'. Everything in it still works on the interior, and is original with exception of the water heater and front dinette. The first thing i did was remove the front dinette so i could access the water tank, and pump to clean up and make sure its in working order. Since this is my first trailer i am working my way thru the systems to see where they are and how they work.

Question 1: Is there a good place to find good affordable new appliances and parts?

2: Can some one tell me how to find out where to learn what parts were original(exterior driving lights, have four different covers)?

3: What converter/inverter(not sure what one is which yet) is enough powr to run this size unit?

4: Does remodeling the inside not back to as close to original as possible hurt the resale alot?

5: Im looking to gut the bathroom, where would the best place to buy replacement fiberglass/plastic shells to install back?

Im sure i have more but cant think of them at the moment
1. Look on line for an Airstream dealer that sells parts, as most of them do not.
2. Replacing many things on the 68 will update it as well as serve you better. Replace the exterior lights with LED's.
3. A current Univolt used by Airstream is 55 amps. Your original was 30 amps.
4. Remodeling your Airstream is like remodeling your home. Use some good judgement but keep in mind that an Airstream flexes when traveling. Adding to that, is bad rubber rods in the axles, which will cause the trailer to have a rough bouncy ride instead of it's required "soft" ride.
5. The original bathroom parts have not been available for many years.

Your first major project is to water proof the coach, by making sure all the gaskets are serviceable.

Andy
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Old 11-14-2012, 08:21 AM   #6
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1984 31' Sovereign
1978 Argosy 24
Zavalla , Texas
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out-of-doors-mart rv in Colfax, North Carolina is also a good Airstream Parts source and a has a guy that fixes old Airstream locks. PPL, as mentioned, is a good source, reasonable as these things go, and ships really quick.

Good luck.
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Old 11-14-2012, 08:57 AM   #7
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1977 31' Sovereign
1963 26' Overlander
1989 34' Excella
Johnsburg , Illinois
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 2,941
Remodeling the coach is a very expensive proposition, if you want to replace all the appliances. You will not get anywhere near your money back if you intend to sell in the future. Monetarily, the smartest thing to do is do all the work yourself and use as much of the original appliances and cabinetry as you can. The layout of this model is quite nice for the average camping or touring owners. Some appliances, in a unit that old, may need to be replaced for safety reasons. Be very careful with those windows. It can be expensive if you break one. Andy's advice is right, you should check that the axles work properly or your work will be shaken apart or damaged by the rough road and higher speeds we trailer at today.
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:49 PM   #8
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Welcome to the forum. You'll find lots of good advice, lots of good people here. And, we like pictures.
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Old 11-20-2012, 09:37 AM   #9
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2010 30' Classic
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South of the river , Minnesota
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 4,119
Quote:
Originally Posted by dereks57 View Post
I just purchased a 68' international 30'. Everything in it still works on the interior, and is original with exception of the water heater and front dinette. The first thing i did was remove the front dinette so i could access the water tank, and pump to clean up and make sure its in working order. Since this is my first trailer i am working my way thru the systems to see where they are and how they work.
Welcome

Quote:
Question 1: Is there a good place to find good affordable new appliances and parts?
Shop around, but there isn't a great deal of variation in prices. Tweety's is a high-volume mail order dealer. Vintage Trailer Supply is more restoration-oriented and provides excellent advice and a product mix geared more towards what you're doing. Out Of Doors mart and Inland RV are both Airstream dealers that provide parts on a mail order basis.

Quote:
2: Can some one tell me how to find out where to learn what parts were original(exterior driving lights, have four different covers)?
Look at photos of other member's rigs. Vintage Trailer Supply and Out Of Doors mart have some information on their web site showing the range of years for which their various products are correct replacements.

Quote:
3: What converter/inverter(not sure what one is which yet) is enough powr to run this size unit?
Typically people use 55 amp converters. The size isn't especially critical -- you can get by with less or use a bigger one if you want to be able to charge the batteries more quickly.

Quote:
4: Does remodeling the inside not back to as close to original as possible hurt the resale alot?
In general it is not possible to recover the remodeling costs when reselling a trailer, regardless of whether the end result is faithful to the original or not.

Most of the successful remodeling projects keep the original floorplan and cabinetry, but update the carpet, upholstery, and countertops. That said, there have been some remarkable projects that have been more extensive, though these require greater investments of time, money, and skill.

Quote:
5: Im looking to gut the bathroom, where would the best place to buy replacement fiberglass/plastic shells to install back?
They're no longer available. You're best off repairing and refinishing what you have.
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