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Old 05-05-2005, 10:08 AM   #1
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Walbernize/wash- 1st time....

Greetings.

This coming weekend, I will be schlepping our '04 19' ccd to the car wash place next to our storage facility for what will be it's first exterior bath since we bought the unit one year ago.

I know. I am a little late.

Right after the thorough wash, I plan on Walbernize-ing the unit.

My question, and I think I asked this before, but could not find the answer in my search:

Aside from a good washing, does the white coated roof part of the trailer need to be waxed or treated, or can I save myself from a possible visit to the emergency room and embaressemnet of non-camping relatives laughter?

I definately plan to Walbernize all things alluminum, and at some point soon also tackle the interior walls of the ccd as well. I'm just wondering how many of you actually climb to the roof.

Would there be any consequences of NOT treating the roof that anyone is aware?

Thanks.

Jonathan
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Old 05-05-2005, 12:01 PM   #2
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I have at the very least used one of those wands with a soft cloth attached to wash off the top. This season, I Walbernized the street side roof which was fairly easy with a good ladder. I might even do the curbside, but I don't think much needs to be done to the roof, except for a good cleaning.

Make sure to use Armor All car wash. I have heard it's not a good idea to use petro based cleaners or waxes on the finish.

One last thing is that cleaning and maintaining the roof will lessen those black lines that run down the side after a rain storm.
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Old 05-05-2005, 03:26 PM   #3
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Thanks Mr. Eric.

This is what I was hoping to hear.

And yes, the roof will need a good cleaning, or I can see endless black crud running down the sides.

I will give the guys at the wash a hand, and I do have one of those retractable brush things that up until now have been brushing my teeth with.

Best.

Jonathan
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Old 05-05-2005, 07:22 PM   #4
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Jonathan,

I washed and Walbernized my 22' CCD three weeks ago. I did get up on the roof and washed the white part with a brush. I'm 250# so I was careful to stand on the rivets. I used a sponge for the aluminum end caps and sides. I Walbernized all the aluminum from a 6' step ladder and didn't have to get back up on the roof. It was a long reach on the center end cap segments, but I was able to get to all of the surfaces. The wash was Turtle Wax Zip Wax and has wax in the solution, so at least the white roof got some wax on it. The trailer looked beautiful!!! Then the pollen came.

If the weather is nice this weekend I'll be wire brushing the rust on the tongue, then spot priming and painting.
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Old 05-05-2005, 09:30 PM   #5
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My practice is wash the trailer before and after every outing. I Walbernize in the spring and in the fall after the last trip. I haven't Walbernized the white roof though. While I have a tall A frame ladder and an extension brush to allow me to wash the roof, I just haven't brought myself to the point of getting up on the roof. I just don't like heights.

What will happen to the roof if I don't Walbernize it is still a mystery to me. My guess is that in the long run the white finish may eventually chalk up, and maybe I will get white streaks. I had the Safari for 3 years and the roof seemed to be as good as the day I bought it. Now keep it 10-15 or more years, that might be another story.

Eventually I'll either get up the courage to go up there, or I'll figure out a way to Walbernize using an extension pole.

Jack
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Old 05-07-2005, 12:22 AM   #6
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Walbernizing our 31' classic is a monster job. We do the roof down. Even though we use an electric buffer there is still a huge amount of rag polishing. My arms are soooo worn out after a polish. But when your done and the aches and pains subside, you look at your Airstream and go, WOW! now that was really worth it. It's beautiful.
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Old 05-07-2005, 01:53 PM   #7
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My solution to roof cleaning

I got a couple of carpet samples from a carpet store (Don't get ahead of me: I didn't ask to borrow them to see how they looked in our house; they were discontinued carpets!).

I wrapped them around a 2X4 about four feet long, and stapled them on the back side of it. I then drove it some large electrical staples (also on the back side) spacing them to match the spread of the legs on my 8' stepladder.

When it's waxing time, I use some plastic wire ties to secure the board about one foot below the top of the ladder. I can then set it against the AS and the ribs will support it without the skin taking any of the weight.

I can then do a section of roof, move the ladder about 4 feet and do another. I have to do it from both sides but it saves the hassle, and possible danger of climbing out on the roof.

I've been using this successfully for many years ('77 Argosy 6 Metre from 1978 to 2001, 29' Excella since 2001).

And, like everyone else says, it's wirk, but pride is in the shine when it's complete!

jim
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Old 05-07-2005, 08:01 PM   #8
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Alternative to Walbernize Polish/Wax?

Has anyone had success with anything other than Walbernize products? With the clearcoat finish on the newer coaches, I would think any premium clearcoat-approved polish would be fine. I notice in the Airstream Manuals they only suggest any good automotive polish approved for clearcoat.
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Old 05-08-2005, 10:43 AM   #9
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Thank you for your help.

It just was not meant for me to detail the AS yesterday!!!

The road I take to the storage place was closed for repair. All traffic, and I mean alot of cars, trucks, etc., diverted down side streets as detour. A trip that normally takes me about 50 minutes, was 1 1/2 hours!!! I went over to the car wash place next door, and even though the road that the wash place was on was the one under construction, there were lines of vehicles waiting to get washed. It was a mad house. I dropped off a coat and some rugs in the trailer and then spent another 2 hours getting home.

Mother's day crowd I suppose. My original plan was to do this during the week, on an overcast day. I need to heed my own advice.

Jonathan

P.S.- for all you mom's, grand-moms, or moms to be, happy Mother's Day.
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Old 05-16-2005, 10:41 AM   #10
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Well Saturday was a great day!!!

I wheeled my 19' CCD over to a relatives house who gladly offered water to wash and Walbernize the AS. And I was even invited back, when ever I want!!! In addtion to saving $45.00 for a wash at the local wash place, I was able to do it myself. Something the wash place said I couldn't do, due to liability.

I can safely say, that aside from the day I married my wife, this was the happiest I've ever been!!! Looks great.

I scrubed the roof, but did not go on the roof.

A couple of things I noticed that I will take up with Jackson Center: The AIRSTREAM lettering on both the front and the back of the trailer, appear to be de-laminating from the shell. They kind of look like they slightly curl at the tips of the letters. I was careful buffing with a cloth so as not to catch one of those corners and complete rip-off a letter.

I also really hosed the top with water. I had terrific water presure, sprayed water everywhere, anticipating a flood in the trailer. But it was as dry as my sense of humor. Wash and wax took about 3 1/2 hours. Interestingly, I used up only a small amount of Walbernize. Maybe 1/4 or less of a one quart bottle.

One thing I screwed up: I used Walbernize on the Stainless wraps on the front, and they now are very streaky. They don't look so good, but being stainless, there has got to be something I can do.

Any ideas on this would be appreciated.

Blinded by my love.

Jonathan
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Old 05-16-2005, 10:44 AM   #11
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Been there, done that and wrote the book.

Use some stainless steel cleaner (I got some at Home Depot). After a few cleanings, it will look better....but stress a few cleanings. Also follow the wet stainless cleaner with a dry towel and follow the grain. In time it will look great!
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Old 05-16-2005, 04:47 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazylev
The AIRSTREAM lettering on both the front and the back of the trailer, appear to be de-laminating from the shell. They kind of look like they slightly curl at the tips of the letters. I was careful buffing with a cloth so as not to catch one of those corners and complete rip-off a letter.
Hi Jonathan,

I'm having the same thing happen with my AIRSTREAM letters. I'm still under warranty and have asked my local dealer to get me new ones. They are "currently out of stock"! Does that mean that the assembly line has come to a screaching halt because they're no AIRSTREAM letters? I don't think so. Anyway I wait.

Also I noticed while on the roof, that it ain't pretty up there. A sloppy mess. The guy with the sealent did a sorry job. They used the sealant to hold down my antenna support bracket. Needless to say it came off. I had to use a real marine adhesive to reattach it.

I also noticed a raised corner on the white roof section as it mated with the rear end cap sections. There was no sealent there and an extra rivet hole. This is why I had water stains on the inside seam above my desk (22' CCD). I thought a guy was supposed to stand inside the shell with water spraying on it to locate leaks. He must have been on his coffee break when my trailer came through. This was obvious! Sloppy workmanship. I've sealed it now and I'll make sure that the dealer ensures it stays that way when I take it in for my letters.

While I don't want to make it a regular practice to go on the roof, I'm glad I did, so I could see what's going on up there. A real eye opener.
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Old 05-16-2005, 05:50 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rseagle
Hi Jonathan,

I'm having the same thing happen with my AIRSTREAM letters. I'm still under warranty and have asked my local dealer to get me new ones. They are "currently out of stock"! Does that mean that the assembly line has come to a screaching halt because they're no AIRSTREAM letters? I don't think so. Anyway I wait.

Also I noticed while on the roof, that it ain't pretty up there. A sloppy mess. The guy with the sealent did a sorry job. They used the sealant to hold down my antenna support bracket. Needless to say it came off. I had to use a real marine adhesive to reattach it.

I also noticed a raised corner on the white roof section as it mated with the rear end cap sections. There was no sealent there and an extra rivet hole. This is why I had water stains on the inside seam above my desk (22' CCD). I thought a guy was supposed to stand inside the shell with water spraying on it to locate leaks. He must have been on his coffee break when my trailer came through. This was obvious! Sloppy workmanship. I've sealed it now and I'll make sure that the dealer ensures it stays that way when I take it in for my letters.

While I don't want to make it a regular practice to go on the roof, I'm glad I did, so I could see what's going on up there. A real eye opener.
I experienced the exact same thing with the 2004 16' ccd Bambi we had. The TV anti support on ours blew completely off. There was 3 miss drilled and open rivet holes on the roof plus, like you, an area that was open with no sign of sealant. I discovered this when water was running down the inside wall in 2 places during a rain. As to the advertisement telling us how they water test the shells before installing the interior---frankly I DON"T BELIEVE IT !!!!!!!. Obviously the first thing I did when we traded for our new 25' classic was to examine the roof. I found it to be ok so maybe they are making some quality control improvements.-----Pieman
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Old 05-16-2005, 05:51 PM   #14
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My roof isn't the prettiest thing either, but she works well. Guess they figure it's not within eys shot so they goop it on real good...to bad they did do it to my wheel wells.

I so far don't have any delaminaing of the Airstream logos (key word is so far).
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