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Old 02-17-2010, 10:37 PM   #15
1972 Travelux Princess 25
 
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Probably 9/10ths of the people who gut their Airstreams end up trying to sell them incomplete, at a substantial loss.

The others are like Spiffy Gem and manage to complete the job with the expenditure of far more money, time and talent than any sane person would commit.

Paint your trailer or, if the layout really bothers you, sell it and buy one you like better. You will save huge amounts of time and money and avoid the possibility of another heartbreaking Airstream for sale ad.
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Old 02-17-2010, 10:46 PM   #16
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On the other hand if you want to build a trailer to suit yourself it would be cheaper to buy one already gutted. There seem to be lots of them for sale.
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Old 02-17-2010, 10:50 PM   #17
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Since you asked for opinions, there is no excuse to gut a trailer in the condition you show in those pictures. None. Find a wreck to play with and let someone else appreciate the unit you have.
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Old 02-18-2010, 01:13 PM   #18
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Don, this is fantastic and very functional! I love it...
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Originally Posted by adonh View Post
Nothing wrong with "gutting" it as long as you have a plan in mind. Take pictures of everything now as is and then carefully remove beds, cabinets, counters couch, fridge, etc. Take more pictures as you go along and store everything so that you can reinstall those items that you need.With everything out you can inspect the water lines, flooring, walls and make any repairs needed. You can also clean and paint those areas that need it as well.

I can't even speculate on the possibility of switching the rear bath to a center bat configuration. But maybe others will offer some input on this.

On my 1976 A/S when I bought it in 2000 it was it good overall condition for a trailer that had been sitting in a dirt field for 10 years. But it was dirty and all of the appliances, AC and furnace didn't work. My water lines must have had 20 or more holes in the copper pipes and all of the fixtures were bad.The drapes and material on the couch were dry rotted. So I brought it home and started taking things out. I made my repairs, cleaned it up real good, painted where it needed it and remodeled the trailer from front to back replacing the old Formica and carpet with wood floors, oak cabinets and Corian counter top. I replaced the old back breaker couch with leather recliners and installed new drapes. I added a few upgrades along the way in satellite TV, new axles with disc brakes, RV 500 tankless water heater, new AC, new fridge and a great bar with a pull out shelve.

All of this did not happen overnight, it has taken 10 years working on a few things at a time and I was still able to travel in between projects. I stopped keeping track of the cost a few years ago, but whatever you estimate, double it. But by doing the work yourself you will save a lot of money but it is time consuming. You need a place to work on the trailer and the tools do it with as well.

Here are a few pictures of the current results.

Don
1976 31' center bath Airstream Sovereign
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Old 02-18-2010, 01:20 PM   #19
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Thank you! Did you see my photos?

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Originally Posted by fotochop View Post
Kevin's videos are well done and informative but I noticed that he really omits or glosses over A LOT of the time-devouring details. I understand that this is necessary to make a good snappy video segment but I think it would be safe to add at least 30% more time (and probably that much more money too) to each project he tackles. Maybe more like 50%....75% ??

I learned a lot of home renovation skills from working with a good friend who's a contractor. His "philosophy" when approaching old house renovation work was to never destroy more than is necessary to get the job done correctly. A full-gut of an Airstream to tackle an interior paint job seems like over kill to me, personally, especially if the floors are sound.

Can you post any photos?
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Old 02-18-2010, 01:26 PM   #20
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Photos

Tell me what you think? What would be the easiest way to paint out the blue?

THANKS!
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Old 02-18-2010, 02:05 PM   #21
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When I was in the process of covering over yellowed plastic and walls I took a sample of the tan trim that was still in good shape and then had Sherwin-Williams match the color and mix up a can of their high quality latex in a flat finish and a semi-gloss finish. I then just painted the areas that needed painting including the areas in the bath room similar to the blue areas in your bath. I also painted the overhead tambour doors with the semi gloss finish and the trim area and they look brand new. I prepared the surface like any other painting job and it has help up very well. I did not paint the original coating on the interior walls or ceiling just cleaned these areas real well, except in the bath area. This area had the pink and blue flower design which was ugly. So I painted this with a tan base coat and the used a sponge with a gloss gold type color to produce a more modern looking finish. I did paint the end caps which are plastic and had yellowed as well. So it is possible to paint the interior walls and ceiling if need be.

I also went to a local wall paper store and looked through reams of samples until I found some a vinyl wall covering that matched the texture and color of the actual coating on the interior walls and ceiling. It was not an exact but a good match. I used this on the walls separating the kitchen from the center bath area as well as other flat surfaces. The big closet doors in the center bath area as shown in my pictures are covered in the wall covering with oak trim. These are actually the original doors but now look a lot better with the covering. The two small cabinet doors in the kitchen under the Bar as well as the front panel as you enter the trailer also have the wall covering. I used a heavy duty paste to apply the wall covering.

Hope this helps.

Don
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Old 02-18-2010, 02:19 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Spiffy Gem View Post
Been there, done that (check my photo's).

You DO NOT want to gut your trailer if you just want to paint.

But if you do, it will cost big money, so you might as well do anything and everything while you have it down that far ... it's hard to stop once you get started!!

We estimated $4,000 - $5,000 to renovate ours and ended up re-doing everything, $40,000 later!

So how much more do you think you could sell your Airstream for AFTER the paint job, if you were to sell it? Yea, that may not be your intent, but you need to know, if you can't get your money back, that your efforts are a labor of love.

If only someone had enlightened me before I fell down that path!!!

What's a sheet of cabinet grade ply (1/8th, 1/4, 3/8ths, etc) now days? And how many sheets will you need if you have to rebuild a cabinet piece, or two, or.... to get things back in correctly?

And how much will it cost to rebuild the framework for the ply? How many board feet of solid 1x oak, or even worse (price wise) black walnut?

And one last thought: how many camping days are you willing to miss while you are doing all that work?
Hi Spiffy Gem;
My hat off to you for being truthful. Both of us know what the labor of love is and what it can cost. I have not sub out any work in restoring my 1973 26" Argosy but not counting my labor I have well over 30K in total restoration which includes all new interior consisting of 18 Sheets of Marine OKUME [African Mahogany plywood] with 5 coats of urethane Marine Varnish. All new appliances, lighting, bedding. To make this explanation simpler, we have only saved the shell. Total restoration time with building a new SS frame over 2000 hours. In order to attempt such undertaking it takes a good reason and deep pockets.
Thanks, "Boatdoc"
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Old 02-18-2010, 02:25 PM   #23
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Hi Spiffy Gem;
My hat off to you for being truthful. Both of us know what the labor of love is and what it can cost. I have not sub out any work in restoring my 1973 26" Argosy but not counting my labor I have well over 30K in total restoration which includes all new interior consisting of 18 Sheets of Marine OKUME [African Mahogany plywood] with 5 coats of urethane Marine Varnish. All new appliances, lighting, bedding. To make this explanation simpler, we have only saved the shell. Total restoration time with building a new SS frame over 2000 hours. In order to attempt such undertaking it takes a good reason and deep pockets.
Thanks, "Boatdoc"
Sounds like a great looking Airstream, how about some pictures. Would love to see it.

Don
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Old 02-18-2010, 03:41 PM   #24
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Thank you so much Don! I was told the tambour doors will not stand up to a paint job no matter what you use, and as for the tub, sink, and shower area I thought an automotive painter would be able to spray it - I persevere!!!
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Old 02-18-2010, 03:43 PM   #25
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It does sound great, would love to see it!

With all of this great advice for all of you experienced Streamers I shall paint on, do the upholstery and just aesthetically tidy this up...THANKYOU!
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Old 02-18-2010, 04:25 PM   #26
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Hi Spiffy Gem;
My hat off to you for being truthful. "Boatdoc"
Thank-you for the kind words.

I just hate to see people fall down the same road without warning.

That said I do enjoy the fruit of my labor, but my wife is already wanting something else, as Spiffy does not have a 'full time' bed, meaning we have to make one at night and put it up in the morning. That's a hard thing if you have more that two people, especially if it's cold outside and nobody want's to go out while things are being put up.
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Old 02-18-2010, 04:40 PM   #27
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Paint out the blue and use it as-is for 2010. If you really don't like the layout after this camping season you can start the renovations then. Remember, these trailers are called "Land Yachts" for a reason.

Definition: Boat, a hole in the water into which huge amounts of money are thrown.

Definition: Renovation of Airstream, a hole in the asphalt into which huge amounts of money are thrown.
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Old 02-18-2010, 05:06 PM   #28
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I enjoy the transformational end result and anticipated an easier road, though when I appears to be "too good to be true", it usually is. I will face lift it and move forward!
Thanks again for making the time to save my, well, bank account!!!
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Thank-you for the kind words.

I just hate to see people fall down the same road without warning.

That said I do enjoy the fruit of my labor, but my wife is already wanting something else, as Spiffy does not have a 'full time' bed, meaning we have to make one at night and put it up in the morning. That's a hard thing if you have more that two people, especially if it's cold outside and nobody want's to go out while things are being put up.
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