Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 04-22-2005, 09:13 PM   #1
4 Rivet Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 261
Images: 14
Anatomy/repair of LeDeux openers for the Hehr roof vent

I had two LeDeux openers that were frozen and wouldn't turn. I soaked them for a week in PB Blaster and WD40 but they were still frozen tight. So I decided to open one up to see what the insides looked like. Turned out to be fairly easy to open them and repair. To do so :

1. lightly tap the end cap off with a screwdriver and hammer , working around the circle... tap and move a little ... tape and move a little. The end cap is just pressed on. Mine had oxidation and rusty crud inside from being wet. The roof vent had holes in it.

2. Now the end of inner cylinder in the outer cylinder is visible. To get the inner cylinder out I used a socket that would fit inside the outer cylinder and a hammer to tap the inner cylinder out after prying the small plug in the side of the cylinder out with a sharp knife. Both cylinders are aluminum ( I think) and are soft so I just held the cylinder in one hand and hit the socket with a hammer. After 10 or so hits the inner cylinder started moving. A few more hits and it popped out.

3. Then I bead blasted the crud away and sand papered to clean the working surfaces. Then a good coating of white lithium grease was applied.

4. Then reassemble the opener and I now have two good as new operating LeDeux openers.

Pic 1 shows the end cap off the opener
Pic 2 shows the way I freed the 2 cylinders
Pic 3 show the disassemled opener
Pic 4 show them reassembled ready for use
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	leduex3.jpg
Views:	247
Size:	28.0 KB
ID:	11716   Click image for larger version

Name:	leduex.jpg
Views:	249
Size:	19.0 KB
ID:	11717  

Click image for larger version

Name:	leduex4.jpg
Views:	248
Size:	34.2 KB
ID:	11718   Click image for larger version

Name:	ledeux5.jpg
Views:	259
Size:	31.4 KB
ID:	11719  

__________________

__________________
bjond is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2005, 10:42 PM   #2
Rivet Master
 
InsideOut's Avatar

 
1956 22' Safari
Vintage Kin Owner
Conifer/Evergreen , Colorado
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 11,793
Images: 108
Good job Herb! Thanks for sharing your experience & pictures. We haven't had to do this one...yet! I'm sure we will someday ~

Shari
__________________

__________________
Vintage Airstream Club - Past President 2007/2008
WBCCI #1824 - DenCO Unit Past President (2005)
AIR #30 - Join Date: 2-25-2002

RMVAC | WBCCI DenCO Unit | Sisters on the Fly | Tin Can Tourists
BIRDY - our 1956 Safari | 1964 Serro Scotty
InsideOut is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2005, 01:43 PM   #3
Rivet Master
 
Ken J's Avatar
 
1956 22' Flying Cloud
Durango , Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: 1975 25' Tradewind
Posts: 3,363
Images: 14
Thanks Herb - thats really great to know - I've always been able to get mine the work then use litheum grease on them.....

Ken
__________________
1956 Flying Cloud
Founder :
Four Corners Unit
Albuquerque National Balloon Fiesta
Rally
Vintage Trailer Academy - Formerly the original
restoration rally
Ken J is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2009, 03:03 PM   #4
4 Rivet Member
 
bevman's Avatar
 
1958 22' Flying Cloud
Saint Helena , California
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 253
Thanks for this post, Herb. I used your tutorial to successful un-stick a stuck lifter from my Astrodome. With the dome removed, I took the opportunity to use some Meguire's Plastic cleaner on the fiberglass. It didn't have any effect on the yellow cast in the fiberglass, but having it sparkling clean is a plus.
__________________
bevman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2009, 05:29 PM   #5
Rivet Master
 
nmbosa's Avatar
 
1959 26' Overlander
Nowhere , Washington
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 572
Very Helpful

64Overlander, I hope you saw this too. I guess we both needed to dig a little deeper in the forums for the answer to our lifter questions. I followed this little tutorial today and it worked just as advertised.
__________________
Norm and Mary
blog: Captain Wilson's Overlander
nmbosa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2009, 09:19 AM   #6
4 Rivet Member
 
pinktrailer's Avatar
 
1967 26' Overlander
1953 17' Clipper
Mendon , Vermont
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 392
Images: 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by jbond View Post
I had two LeDeux openers that were frozen and wouldn't turn. I soaked them for a week in PB Blaster and WD40 but they were still frozen tight. So I decided to open one up to see what the insides looked like. Turned out to be fairly easy to open them and repair. To do so :

1. lightly tap the end cap off with a screwdriver and hammer , working around the circle... tap and move a little ... tape and move a little. The end cap is just pressed on. Mine had oxidation and rusty crud inside from being wet. The roof vent had holes in it.

2. Now the end of inner cylinder in the outer cylinder is visible. To get the inner cylinder out I used a socket that would fit inside the outer cylinder and a hammer to tap the inner cylinder out after prying the small plug in the side of the cylinder out with a sharp knife. Both cylinders are aluminum ( I think) and are soft so I just held the cylinder in one hand and hit the socket with a hammer. After 10 or so hits the inner cylinder started moving. A few more hits and it popped out.

3. Then I bead blasted the crud away and sand papered to clean the working surfaces. Then a good coating of white lithium grease was applied.

4. Then reassemble the opener and I now have two good as new operating LeDeux openers.

Pic 1 shows the end cap off the opener
Pic 2 shows the way I freed the 2 cylinders
Pic 3 show the disassemled opener
Pic 4 show them reassembled ready for use

Hi--I'm new to this thread, and I thank you so much for the info. My '53 has the same type of lifter, and I have one that is frozen. My knobs say "LADEAU MFG, ACTUATOR BY LOS ANGELES". The knobs are really nice looking.

I'm going to try your process, and hopefully get this one to work.

Thanks!!
__________________
pinktrailer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2009, 09:54 AM   #7
4 Rivet Member
 
pinktrailer's Avatar
 
1967 26' Overlander
1953 17' Clipper
Mendon , Vermont
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 392
Images: 7
discovered the problem

I just pulled out the problem vent. It turns out that the cyclinder that wasn't working is just fine, but it is turning at the connection to the hinge, as someone put it on with a nut. I have sprayed the hinges and the nut with wd40, hoping to loosen them. Does anyone know if you can purchase just the hinges from Inland? Mine are so rusty they don't move at all.
__________________
pinktrailer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2009, 10:58 AM   #8
3 Rivet Member
 
1963 24' Tradewind
Cape Coral , Florida
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 200
The lifter is connected to the bracket with a small pinch pin on each side of the lifter. Its sort of like a gimble for a maritime compass. Slip a small screw driver between the lifter and the bracket, twist and pull gently. The lifter should separate from the bracket, Do that on both sides. Then lift the entire vent cover, with lifters attached, up and turn sideways to bring down through the vent opening at a diagonal.

Now you can work at a comfortable height. The hinge should be attached to the vent cover through three holes. Originally they used three rivets. These often break and come loose. If the vent cover is otherwise in good shape I'd recommend reattaching it with #6 x 1/2 SS mach bolts with nyloc nuts. Hit the hinge with a small wire brush and lubricate. With the lifter now reattached at three points it should no longer spin. Reverse the process and reinstall. Sit down with a cold one and contratulate yourself for a job well done.

If the cover is not in good shape replacements are available.
__________________
dieseleagle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2009, 09:15 PM   #9
4 Rivet Member
 
pinktrailer's Avatar
 
1967 26' Overlander
1953 17' Clipper
Mendon , Vermont
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 392
Images: 7
Ready to attach the new gasket

Alot of wd40 later.....all hinges work, and all lifters are clean and working properly! I just have to polish the inside, touch up the outside, and figure out how to install the new gaskets that I just received from VTS.

I did have a cold one, and it was great, as today was really hot!!
__________________
pinktrailer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-31-2009, 06:05 AM   #10
3 Rivet Member
 
1963 24' Tradewind
Cape Coral , Florida
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 200
Congratulations. These small victories give us the inspiration needed to move on the next item on the endless list of ought-to-do's.
__________________
dieseleagle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-02-2009, 01:54 PM   #11
4 Rivet Member
 
bevman's Avatar
 
1958 22' Flying Cloud
Saint Helena , California
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 253
When I first got the Flying Cloud I cleaned the lifters and then greased them as recommended with white lithium grease. In no time, the grease turned black, acting like flypaper for any lint or dust passing through the vent. My question is, should we NOT grease them, or use something dry, like graphite for lock cylinders.
__________________
bevman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-02-2009, 02:56 PM   #12
4 Rivet Member
 
Distantdrummer's Avatar
 
1975 31' Sovereign
Houston , Texas
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 494
I had never heard of LeDeux hardware. It took a while but from your profile and the other posts would I be right to assume the brand was a 50's & 60's only thing in Airstreams?

Any chance the VAC archivist/historian Fred can specify the years that LeDeux was on board? Hope so.
Also any documentation of what became of the LeDeux company? Quit or absorbed, or other?
__________________
__________________________
____ d'drummer ____

...aahh..rumm..pu..tum..tummm...
Distantdrummer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-02-2009, 05:50 PM   #13
Rivet Master
 
47WeeWind's Avatar
 
1948 16' Wee Wind
1953 21' Flying Cloud
Denver , Colorado
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 1,149
Images: 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Distantdrummer View Post
I had never heard of LeDeux hardware. It took a while but from your profile and the other posts would I be right to assume the brand was a 50's & 60's only thing in Airstreams? Any chance the VAC archivist/historian Fred can specify the years that LeDeux was on board? Hope so. Also any documentation of what became of the LeDeux company? Quit or absorbed, or other?
Hi ddr . . .

LeDeux and LaDeau are the same Los Angeles company and are pronounced the same, just spelled differently depending on regional accents. Their lifters might have been used in a few other brand travel trailers are well.

They are great, ingenious work-forever products if given periodic maintenance, a mostly forgotten concept today. These are all characteristics of the time when the U.S.A. manufactured thoughtful products that cound be rebuilt and/or repaired as opposed to discarded, the fate of too much stuff today.

LaDeau lifters were used in Airstreams from about 1948 to at least 1964 and perhaps a few years later. The pop-on operator knobs changed from the cool round knurled ones to the more familiar plain "T" style ones in early fifties. I like the knurled round knobs because LaDeau was so proud of its product that it cast its name into these round knobs.
__________________
Fred Coldwell, WBCCI #1510, AIR #2675
Denver, Colorado - WBCCI Unit 24
Airstream Life "Old Aluminum"
Airstream Life
"From the Archives"
47WeeWind is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-12-2009, 11:55 PM   #14
Rivet Master
 
66Overlander's Avatar
 
1962 22' Safari
2016 30' Classic
Somewhere , in the USA
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 1,973
Images: 41
I know we had these lifters on our '66 Overlander, so they were used at least that long. I suspect, but can't prove, that they were used until the roof vents switched from square corners to rounded corners. What year was that change made? 67? 68? 69?

I think (also can't prove) that the rounded knurled knobs were still used in '53 (some parts I have from a '53 Flying Cloud included the rounded knobs) and that the more familar "T" knobs were in use by '55 (at least my '55 Safari has the T's). There may have been a time where usage of both overlapped as they used up stock.
__________________

__________________
Joe
Wally Byam Caravan Club International Historian
Vintage Airstream Club Historian
WBCCI/VAC #6768

(Looking for a vintage 1960's fiberglass front window guard)
66Overlander is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Repairing roof vent covers? JohnGalt48 Roof Vents, Skylights & Fans 21 04-15-2007 05:45 PM
Roof Vent Covers Dwight Roof Vents, Skylights & Fans 2 10-13-2003 11:16 AM
Roof Air Problams ViewRVs Mechanics Corner - Engines, Transmission & More... 22 01-28-2003 07:40 PM
Roof Vent Original? pepper48 Roof Vents, Skylights & Fans 6 11-09-2002 06:44 AM
Roof AC units Questions FrankR Furnaces, Heaters, Fireplaces & Air Conditioning 15 07-22-2002 02:35 PM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:05 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.