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Old 06-01-2015, 09:47 PM   #1
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1977 31' Sovereign
Birmingham , Alabama
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Replacement Door

We just bought a 1977 Sovereign and have started working on taking everything out. The door is messed up and won't shut completely. There is a crack in the door around where the handle is which keeps it from shutting. Should we try to have it fixed or should we replace the door? If we have to replace it where should I look to purchase it?
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Old 06-02-2015, 11:17 AM   #2
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1973 21' Globetrotter
Houston , Texas
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Welcome to the Forums!

As far as sources for doors go, you will probably have to find a used one. There are a few used RV parts dealers that have Airstream parts. Silvertrailersupply.com is one of them. You might also check the "resources" section of vintageairstream.com, there are a lot of good parts resources compiled there. (Restoration Suppliers & Resources - Vintage Airstream).

Now then, when you see how hard it is to find a complete, and in good condition door (and the cost of the door plus shipping), you will be inspired to exhaust every effort to repair the one you have. Search the Forums for threads describing "sprung doors." There are a few threads on this topic that explain the whole process of straightening out a door. First you will need to find someone locally who can do TIG welding to repair your cracked frame. This is potentially a large, and involved project depending on how far you are willing to go. As long as you are in there, you might consider replacing the old KT latch system with someing more modern (which will also require modifications to your door frame and striker pocket.

Good luck!
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Old 08-08-2015, 05:59 PM   #3
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1965 20' Globetrotter
Fairfield , Connecticut
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Door repair

I just saw your post. I have a 65 globetrotter with a door frame that was cracked in three places. I am in the process of repairing it now. I considered replacing it but found that a used one would cost $900+. I traced the profile of the trailer exterior and then made a plywood cradel to set the frame into for welding. 2-3 hours. I then drilled rivets and removed the door leaving the hinge attached to the trailer. 1 hour. Laying the door into the cradle I then made bench marks locating various reference points. Drilled out interior skin rivets, removed skin then used air hammer to shear bucked rivets for ext. skin. 1 hour. I sandblasted frame. .5 hr with cheap sandblast rig. I brought to welder I know he said give me $150 for three hours work. I gave him 200 cash and thanked him. Polished out door on the bench 2 hours. Setup skin with clecos and buck riveted 2 hours. I planned to install a patch to cover existing locksets as I will be using new locksets. I thought I could do that later. unfortunately i found that I needed to remove some rivets to do this, in the process i cracked the frame again. Skin off -back to the welder-get patch ready-redo. All in all I have enjoyed the process and in addition to saving money I like the idea of working with the original parts. I am making patches from original aluminum found in floor. I considered new metal for door skin then decided that a pristine door on the side of a 50 year old trailer was not ideal. I have photos of the whole process that I hope to post upon completion. If you want those or more info let me know.
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Old 08-08-2015, 06:05 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JLGT5107 View Post
I just saw your post. I have a 65 globetrotter with a door frame that was cracked in three places. I am in the process of repairing it now. I considered replacing it but found that a used one would cost $900+. I traced the profile of the trailer exterior and then made a plywood cradel to set the frame into for welding. 2-3 hours. I then drilled rivets and removed the door leaving the hinge attached to the trailer. 1 hour. Laying the door into the cradle I then made bench marks locating various reference points. Drilled out interior skin rivets, removed skin then used air hammer to shear bucked rivets for ext. skin. 1 hour. I sandblasted frame. .5 hr with cheap sandblast rig. I brought to welder I know he said give me $150 for three hours work. I gave him 200 cash and thanked him. Polished out door on the bench 2 hours. Setup skin with clecos and buck riveted 2 hours. I planned to install a patch to cover existing locksets as I will be using new locksets. I thought I could do that later. unfortunately i found that I needed to remove some rivets to do this, in the process i cracked the frame again. Skin off -back to the welder-get patch ready-redo. All in all I have enjoyed the process and in addition to saving money I like the idea of working with the original parts. I am making patches from original aluminum found in floor. I considered new metal for door skin then decided that a pristine door on the side of a 50 year old trailer was not ideal. I have photos of the whole process that I hope to post upon completion. If you want those or more info let me know.
Great job.

What and how you did it, is about the only way those old cast door frames as well as the door jamb can be fixed.

Takes patience and determination.

Andy
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