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Old 08-05-2015, 03:13 PM   #15
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1985 31' Excella
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In looking at pictures and reading about this over lunch, the camper according to the pictures is an Argosy . . . I am not sure whether this is good or bad

My coworker and I are going to look at the camper after work
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Old 08-05-2015, 04:46 PM   #16
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Argosy

Alexj, This '88 if an Argosy may just be the best of both Airstream worlds' for you! Ask the owner if it has a clear title and if they have the paperwork (original) from a dealer when it was new. It may be a standard length or it could be a Metre version. Post which one you find it to be and what length it actually is. Find out from the current owner if it has an aluminum sub floor or not. If aluminum floor that would eliminate the rot issues common to lots of older trailers. If you can take some interior and exterior pictures and post them here! Oh yeah, REMEMBER! There are no such things as stupid questions! Ask away..... That's what we are here for! Good Luck, Ed
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Old 08-05-2015, 04:56 PM   #17
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How do you tell if it has an aluminum subfloor?
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Old 08-05-2015, 05:01 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by alexj View Post
How do you tell if it has an aluminum subfloor?

Alexj, Ask the current owner if they know. If not try to see if the belly pan metal under the trailer has an access panel. If so look up above the insulation to see if there is wood or aluminum. You really can't tell by looking under the flooring on the inside as most have a plywood or chipboard installed to lay the interior flooring/carpet onto! Ed
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Old 08-05-2015, 05:26 PM   #19
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I have a 1978 AS bought it for $6000.00 and have done about another $6000. in repairs over the years and it's in good shape, will probably last as long as I want to tow it.
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Old 08-05-2015, 05:31 PM   #20
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We own two 1988 vintage Airstreams. We bought them 9 and 5 years ago and paid about $12000 for them. Things to check is leaks and rotten spots in the floor, check the drain valves, tanks, and dump valves carefully. It s about $1000 to replace the drain valves and fittings. Tanks would be more. Check the water heater and the floor under it. We spend up to 6 months of the year in one or the other. Two of us and a dog. We have replaced the AC in both units. $1300 done on site the last time. Water heater runs about $500 plus installation. Check to see if the plumbing leks. If it has frozen you will nee P?EX tools and to develop a skill. If it has Vista windows you will have to caulk them and probably will have a hole in the floor near them. Rip all the carpet out, check the floors, and install a floating vinyl plank floor from Home Depot. Another skill to master. One person, you will have more room than you know what to do with in a 33 ft. Texas is awful hot for a Airstream. You can us the hallway door and only cool the half you are in in hot weather. The fidge is marginal in hot weathe. I would think about getting an apartment fridge with a comressor if the fridge is bad or if you have a shed to put it in. Lots cheaper and more efficient if you have full time electriciy.
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Old 08-05-2015, 10:02 PM   #21
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We looked at it . . . . . I never have before seen a trailer in such sorry condition

On a positive Airstream related note, my coworker has a very cool Airstream Sprinter we rode in on our trip and that was a lot of fun.
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Old 08-05-2015, 10:12 PM   #22
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Would an older Airstream be okay for me? Full time, stationary, non park

AVION and Silver Streak are better made. Will be cheaper as less well known and will need less as well. As above, it all comes down to condition.

My summer electricity bill runs $100-120 at .11KwH in my 35' Silver Streak in Corpus Christi. 15k single AC, 70-pint dehumidifier. 73F at 40% humidity.

A Dyson Hot/Cool heater makes winter easy used in conjunction with furnace.
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Old 08-06-2015, 08:57 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alexj View Post
We looked at it . . . . . I never have before seen a trailer in such sorry condition

On a positive Airstream related note, my coworker has a very cool Airstream Sprinter we rode in on our trip and that was a lot of fun.
Was this the "Squarestream" in Pinehurst?

Well, if you keep looking you will definitely find vintage trailers in sorrier condition. The fact is that any trailer, of any age (Airstream or otherwise) can/will leak, and that is just the beginning of the downward spiral. It helps if the trailer has spent its entire life garaged/covered, and has been meticulously maintained, but 99.9% of them don't fit this description. If you want to save yourself some time kicking tires, you might focus on the trailers that have already had work done to restore them.

good luck!
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Old 08-06-2015, 03:01 PM   #24
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EVERYTHING works in the Avion I bought for $9K - and I can and will splurge on the ugly dated interior - but if I were on a budget I could get it looking acceptable for under a grand, or much less since I can sew my own curtains.

You are also located in Texas - which I overlooked in your first post. There are two Airstream ONLY parks in Texas - where many have retired. Some people travel and home base in one of these two, others park them and stay... AND build roofs or companion buildings over/around them. I've never been to an Airstream only park that didn't have at least two to five trailers for sale as the owners age out of Airstreaming.

Those parks are your happy hunting grounds if you MUST have an Airstream, but you'll kick yourself later if you overlook an Avion or Silver Streak that might be available. I know you've already seen an Argosy and are aware of the Squarestream - so you know the pool may be deeper than you expected it to be.

Use google to find the Airstream only parks. Hope one is very close.
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Old 08-06-2015, 04:17 PM   #25
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I'm not absolutely set on an Airstream, I do think they are cool though. I'm mostly set on 'the roof is unlikely to come down on top of me in the next couple years'. My current trailer does not meet this requirement so it is time to go shopping (my mechanic suggests 'in the next few months' as being a good timeline)

Aistreams (and also the Avions and Silver Streaks) are epicly cool, and I'm a sucker for cool things (why I am driving around a long in the tooth Volvo instead of something that local mechanics actually willing to work). So I think as long as I am shopping for a trailer I should shop for a cool trailer (as opposed to my current trailer, where I discovered I needed a trailer yesterday and bought the first one I could find without a clue what I was doing), since if I'm going to live in it I want something I am excited to live in.



My mechanic thinks my situation is best served by a Katrina special park model Cavalier but . . . ugh. I don't want a Katrina special park model Cavalier.
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Old 08-06-2015, 05:53 PM   #26
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Ironically, the longer used ones are typically cheaper than the shorter ones. Look at 31 ft, 32 ft, and 34 ft models.

And if it's going to sit stationary, one with Sag/Separation could probably be bought for super cheap,but it wouldn't matter if it's stationary. I bought one that had both for $2K and that was a '77 Excella 500 31 footer.

These trailers are not insulated very well....but if you buy it cheaply enough, put a woodstove in it and have fun
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Old 08-07-2015, 09:15 AM   #27
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I wasn't aware some Argosys had aluminum subfloors. They really did experiment with the argosys !. What years were these ?
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Old 08-07-2015, 09:41 AM   #28
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I wasn't aware some Argosys had aluminum subfloors. They really did experiment with the argosys !. What years were these ?
I am not certain, but I believe only the late "Airstream shape" 77-78's in the Minuet series used them, and then not all of them. Like everything else Argosy, there were a lot of things tried out. As I recall, they also reduced the number of frame cross beams, and the aluminum honeycomb floor tended to sag.

The Argosy name was re used on the "squarestream" looking box type trailers of the late 80's. They tended to leak and rot and it is not easy to find one which was covered and maintained well. They were rare to begin with. I don't believe any of those had the aluminum honeycomb floor either.
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