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Old 03-12-2016, 05:29 PM   #1
2 Rivet Member
1972 27' Overlander
Lamar , Missouri
Join Date: Mar 2016
Posts: 23
Preservation, refurbishment, modernization

Got a new 72 land yacht mostly intact. This my 1st AS, I need to do everything to this trailer. Do I try to preserve countertops, stove, oven etc. Is there a value difference between preserved to modernize trailers.

I believe there is strong push to preserve these but I what a functional trailer also. At this I am afraid to even paint the yellowed walls.

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Old 03-12-2016, 05:52 PM   #2
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1983 31' Airstream310
Hillsburgh , Ontario
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 1,460
IMHO Clean everything first with Spray Nine anti-bacterial cleaner, and I do mean everything, maybe even two or three times; you'd be surprised at how much gunk Spray Nine takes off.

Once everything is clean as clean can be, take stock of what works and what doesn't and if that dirty wall is now acceptable. You would also be surprised by changing curtains, cabinetry and easily replaceable surfaces with clean bright white surfaces turns a dark dirty place into a bright airy place without repainting anything.

Below is mine before and after. The interior walls were washed and thats it.

My theory is, If you cannot replace the Airstream part with something as lighter or lighter and better, then it stays and you work with it. All my interior gables are stock Airstream as they are aluminum clad paper core walls and very light. I didn't want the dark MacTac walnut so I reclad them in new vinyl.

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Old 03-12-2016, 06:08 PM   #3
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Southwestern , Ohio
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 1,620

Welcome to the forums!

The answer to your question would depend on how rare your particular trailer model might be, and what you want to do with it!

If a trailer is rare it has significant collector value, which modifications would reduce. But they made quite a few Overlanders, so my guess is that your 1972 model is not very rare. So modifications won't hurt the resale value much if any--and if you fixed something that didn't work, of course, you added to the value.

I agree with the above Isuzusweet--CLEAN the heck out of everything before deciding what you want to do about painting and refinishing. I think your 1972 still had the Zolatone paint interior, which is indestructable. You can clean it with anything, up to scouring powder. When we got our 1960 Pacer (years ago) the inside was a dingy yellow. My wife scrubbed it two or three times with some kind of dynamite cleaner (Simple Green, if I recall) and it cleaned up good as new.

We faced the same question with our 1960--on the one hand, we wanted more creature comforts--the Pacer was pretty Spartan--but we didn't want to butcher up the nearly original trailer because 1960 Pacers are rare--they only made 100 of them. So we ended up buying a 1980 trailer that had the things we wanted and sold the Pacer to someone who wanted a rare one.

When we first started Airstreaming (13 years ago now) an experinced trailer restorer said, "Clean it up and fix it up until it's roadworthy and habitable, then take it on the road." That was excellent advice. When you camp in an Airstream for a while you will find things you want, but you will also discover that some of the features were made that way for very good reasons. Your ideas about modifications will evolve as you use the trailer.

Good luck!
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Old 03-12-2016, 08:24 PM   #4
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1973 27' Overlander
Portsmouth , Virginia
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 775
Welcome aboard. I have a 73 Overlander, and AFAIK, there is nothing that cant be changed or upgraded that will negatively affect its value. In other words do whatever you want to it, its your trailer.

Camp in it for a bit, see what you like about it and dislike. Peruse the forums and see what other folks have done and get some ideas. I had no love for the dark 70's interior or the original gaucho setup so that is all changed. These links are some of what I've done with mine over the last three years:

Ongoing adventures at:
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