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Old 10-06-2009, 10:01 PM   #1
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Long Beach , California
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1987 Sovereign refinish???

Hi folks, I am looking at a 1987 27 foot sovereign. It looks like the roof has been painted silver. The rest of it is pretty spotty. Can I polish? I thought I read that 82 and on used different aluminum. What is the aluminum covered with? Strip, re clear coat better? Please help....

Thanks,
BC
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Old 10-06-2009, 10:26 PM   #2
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1986 25' Sovereign
Atlanta , Georgia
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You are probably right that 82 was near the changeover year. I had a 1979 I polished, but my 86 won't get a mirror shine. Pretty close but not the same. I have some filoform corrosion issues that make polishing difficult, but i am slowly making my way through it. In the interim I am putting on Shark Hyde, but will eventually have it re-clearcoated. Probably will use P&S, they seem to be great.

I love this vintage trailer! Good luck.
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Old 10-06-2009, 10:50 PM   #3
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1977 31' Sovereign
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Many of the Southern and west coast guys give up on polishing after realizing it has to have a lot of attention each year. The clear coat only lasts five years in high sun areas, so some get them have resorted to painting. They look great from a distance and stay that way for up to 15 years. There are many routes to personal satisfaction. Some require more work (and sometimes money) than orthers. It is all about the camping and travel experiences in my mind.
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Old 10-07-2009, 06:56 AM   #4
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1988 34' Limited
1960 24' Tradewind
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No Mirror Shine

We've got an 88 and are in the polishing process now. It can be done and it will look good but you will never get the kind of mirror finish attainable on a pre 82. We are in coastal SC so the salty air is a problem but it is stored under roof. I expect this will be a maintenance thing to keep the shine on, but it will be most interesting to see how long it lasts.
There are many threads on the forum about painting an aluminum trailer--to sum up--if it is not done exactly right, it WILL fail (in a hurry).
Theres nothing like a shine, though. Why else would we spend the amount of time required and end up looking like a coal miner every day for weeks? For the shine.
Good luck.
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Old 10-07-2009, 08:04 AM   #5
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1985 27' Sovereign
1981 22' Excella II
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Colbert , Georgia
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1987 Soverign refinish???

Greetings BC

My wife and I polished a 85 Sovereign. The mirror finish is not quite as deep as one would expect from the earlier trailers, but if not parked right beside an older model, not many could tell the difference. And of course there is upkeep with any Airstream.

Best Regards,
Levon
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Old 10-07-2009, 08:53 AM   #6
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1985 27' Sovereign
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Colbert , Georgia
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Did someone say "Look like a Coal Miner"

Make sure you take two baths....one outdoors and the other indoors, otherwise your polishing will come to a stop.
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Old 10-07-2009, 11:45 AM   #7
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Long Beach , California
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Ok, well there is some hope. I wouldnt mind it even being the nice original matte color but a polished trailer would be cool. It just looks pretty bad right now although I dont see alot of corrosion. Just dirt and sun damage. If I were to just strip and have it reclearcoated would it look close to original? I suspect but am not sure that this aluminum will be more difficult to maintain over the long haul because lack of alclad?

I am going to try to make a deal on it this week.
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Old 10-07-2009, 12:17 PM   #8
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2000 30' Limited
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polish the trailer, don't blacken the polish dog

Okay, ya got my attention with the black polish(er) dog! Has anyone investigated those paper suits the auto painters use? Seems like they might be a good addition to the polish addiction. Wow, I am waxing poetic today. puns intended.
ol bill, who is gonna have the clear coat redone.
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Old 10-11-2009, 04:12 PM   #9
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1964 17' Bambi II
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I'm pretty happy with my 1986 mirror finish. It's not perfect, but it's pretty good. I have a few sections I need to rework next year due to overly aggressive polish. I previously did a 1976 Overlander. I just finished my 1986 Sovereign. Here are both in pictures:
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