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Old 08-30-2005, 12:07 PM   #1
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Arrow Bear bends door

Hello, This is my first posting. I have a 72 International 27', recently got it. Well the last time I went up to work on it, a bear had grabbed the bottom corner and bent the door up, nearly in half. The framing piece of metal that wraps around the door snapped near the latch, but for the rest it is just bent. The bear did not go in and the latch held and the door can be locked. I was able to bend it back to a somewhat reasonable shape, but of course it will not seal and be waterproof this winter. I priced new doors at $2,500. I am going to take the door off and bring it to an autobody shop as the trailer is not towable at the moment. Do you think with some major effort at providing a big seal that I could get it to be waterproof this winter, after of course the autobody shop does some work on it, or should I just get another door? I can't afford a new one, where can I look for a used one? Thanks for any advice.
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Old 08-30-2005, 12:12 PM   #2
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Man! That bear must have thought your trailer was a big ice chest! Did you have foor stored inside? Where was it parked?

Sorry I can't help with the door fix, just curious about the bear...scary!

Shari
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Old 08-30-2005, 12:34 PM   #3
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I have worked with my Airstream door and also worked extensivly with custom automotive body work. If you take the door to the body shop I would take the whole trailer as they will need it to make a proper repair and fix. The door in many cases is easier to form if attached to the trailer. If they can't fix it for a reasonable amount of money consider finding another used door from a "parts Airstream". Many Airstream dealers have a few parts trailers close at hand. Good luck.
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Old 08-30-2005, 12:51 PM   #4
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Hi Maxie and welcome to the forums. Man that bear must have been hungry.
I have a door that came off a '68 Ambassador which my son-in-law parted out. It's in nice shape. If you will PM me your email address, I'll send you photos and full info.
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Old 08-30-2005, 12:59 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rog0525
I have a door that came off a '68 Ambassador which my son-in-law parted out. It's in nice shape. If you will PM me your email address, I'll send you photos and full info.
Between '68 vs '72 there were quite a few body changes in trailers. You may want to triple check to make sure the dimensions & curvature of the door/frame are compatable...I would be very surprised if they are. I hope it works, but...even doors from different trailers of the same year vary from one to another. I'd hate to pay the expense to ship it from Michigan to California only to have it arrive & not work as planned. Good luck ~

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Old 08-30-2005, 01:45 PM   #6
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Try contacting Colaw RV salvage. www.colawrvsalvage.com about the door you need. Don't be scared off by the lack of info on their website - call them!

Also keep an eye out for folks "parting out" deceased trailers - you should be able to find this part.

I have trouble believing that any auto body shop will be able repair this door to your satisfaction.

Sorry for the bear encounter - at least you weren't in it at the time!
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Old 08-30-2005, 01:52 PM   #7
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I have been looking at getting this trailer about 1/2 mile from me, for parts that I need. I want the propane tanks, the roof vent for the fridge, and the door lock. If I get it, you can buy the door, but it would be pricy. I would say it is a 1971 or 72 trailer.

http://www.airforums.com/forum...ad.php?t=16098

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Old 08-30-2005, 05:38 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by InsideOut
Between '68 vs '72 there were quite a few body changes in trailers. You may want to triple check to make sure the dimensions & curvature of the door/frame are compatable...I would be very surprised if they are. I hope it works, but...even doors from different trailers of the same year vary from one to another. I'd hate to pay the expense to ship it from Michigan to California only to have it arrive & not work as planned. Good luck ~
Shari
Quite correct, Shari. There is no way I would ship it without first verifying that it would fit.
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Old 08-30-2005, 06:17 PM   #9
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I have seen both the 68 and the 72 door and I don't think they will interchange. I will go back and look at the pictures, but IIRC the 68 has a different latch assembly. Also there was a change in the extrusion style, but I don't remember if it was 68-70 or a little later.

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Old 08-30-2005, 07:10 PM   #10
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Question Mercy!!

Maxie so glad you are ok. Can you post a picture of the door? You've come to the right place for help!
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Old 08-30-2005, 07:28 PM   #11
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You might try one of the RV salavage companies around the country. There is one in Carthage MO. Colaw RV Parts & Salvage. Their toll free number is 877-548-2125. Their web page www.colawrvsalvage.com

Jim
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Old 08-30-2005, 09:05 PM   #12
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i have a similar issue with the door on my '59. no bear, though. the suicide door flew open during transit, and i guess when it hit the body, it snapped in the exact place you are talking about. i am planning on rebuilding the door anyway. but will need to find someone to make the curved channel that makes the edge. i had thought about just grafting a plate over the break, but since the break is right at the latch, i don't think there is room. it makes my door extremely flimsy, though, and when towing pulls away from the body just as you describe. on my door at least, the outer piece is the only complicated curve. the rest seems pretty straight forward. i would definitely agree that the door needs to be with the trailer, to insure a propper curve to fit the body. i was even thinking about making the door slightly more curved than the body, to make sure the lower corners stay tight against the body when towing.


them's the plans, anyway.
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Old 08-30-2005, 09:49 PM   #13
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I think thems good plans. I had the same thing happen but my door came completely off while cruising down I-40 east of Flagstaff. Riveted it back on and haven't done a thing to it since. That was 4 years ago. It needs some reshaping and a new skin on the inside top but that's it. I was lucky.

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Old 08-31-2005, 05:35 AM   #14
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Thanks for all the replies

Wow, How great to log in and see so many useful replies. No there was no food, so the bear walked away, leaving the delicate little screen door intact. I will bring a camera up this weekend and take a photo. I will also get the dimensions of the door. I will also look at the salvage possibilities mentioned in this thread. Sounds too that if I am going to try the auto body repair route that I better arrange for getting it off the mountain and to the shop. So much to investigate, hope the rain stays away for a while longer. I have a feeling the bear just got me going on all sorts of work I would like to do with my new old Airstream. Thanks again everybody.
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