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Old 08-29-2011, 08:53 PM   #15
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1985 31' Limited
Foley , Alabama
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Concession Trailer

I recently tried to do a conversion on a 31' airstream but decided that buying a new custom built concession trailer which was custom built for us just made more sense for us. We bought the unit from Concession Trailers, Concession Trailer, Mobile Kitchens, BBQ Smoker, Trailers they also said that they do conversions on airstreams as well. Airsteam On!!!!

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Old 09-04-2011, 10:30 PM   #16
1978 25' Tradewind
huntsville , Texas
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We have a "78 Tradewind we may consider selling. We spent the better part of a year restoring and transforming it into a mobile kitchen. 40% of the frame was replaced, new brakes axles, shocks, insulation, electrical, plumbing etc. We added stainless counter tops, and diamond plate floor. It even has custom home-made curtains! We did the majority of the work ourselves and hired professionals where needed. We have over a hundred photos documenting the entire process on facebook at HTX Street Food. email if you are interested or have any questions.

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Old 09-05-2011, 04:36 PM   #17
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1974 23' Safari
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1947 25' Spartan , Manor
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Not sure if you were also looking for feedback as far as just the idea, but I was in catering for ten years and I would say it's a fantastic idea. I'm currently working on my Safari for personal and business use (now in the film business), as I think something like this really makes you stand out.
In catering a lot of business comes from word or mouth and people will surely talk if you have a shiny airstream or a retro trailer! I love my safari, but I also think it could be very cool to re-do a spartan for something like that (I almost bought a Spartan). This place has some cool units: :: Vintage Campers, Vintage Trailers, Vintage Parts, Vintage Restorations
Not sure if you have ever put in a professional kitchen, but you'll need a hood and fire suppression which may end up being the most expensive thing in the trailer if you do it yourself! Anyway, I say go for it, and I agree that getting a gutted (or old) one and saving it from decay is a fun and noble thing to do (if you are able to of course).
Eric Hurt
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Old 09-05-2011, 05:31 PM   #18
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1962 26' Overlander
1961 26' Overlander
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This is probably the coolest concession trailer I have ever seen. It was converted in the late 40's...
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Old 09-05-2011, 05:44 PM   #19
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Gouldsboro , Maine
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Sounds like fun! Please let us know how it works out! Thanks!
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Old 09-05-2011, 11:32 PM   #20
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1979 28' Airstream Excella 28
Wheat Ridge , Colorado
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Engineering and codes first!

Before embarking on a project such as converting a camping trailer to a mobile foodservice vehicle make certain to check with your local code authorities on their requirements. Otherwise you can end up with a lot of time and money invested in a project you cannot license to use.

The most important aspect to consider is the engineering of the chassis and axles. Every trailer has a maximum amount of weight it can carry. Camping trailers are not up to the loads imposed by a commercial kitchen. We use an independent, 3rd party, Licensed Professional Engineer to review our designs before starting a build. Window openings need to be designed and made so that the structural integrity of the body is not compromised.

We have helped save many projects where critical (and expensive) errors were made and could have been avoided with planning and knowledge.
Brett Hall
Wheat Ridge (Denver) Colorado
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Old 11-29-2011, 01:31 PM   #21
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hi is your vending airstream still for sale ?
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Old 11-29-2011, 04:14 PM   #22
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1969 27' Overlander
Albuquerque , New Mexico
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I converted my '69 Overlander into a coffee concession trailer.
I would agree with most of the previous posts.
Brett, with TTT has some important information:
Do your research FIRST.
Find out what you HAVE to have in the trailer to satisfy the Health Department.
Then, design the layout with the lightest equipment possible. No fancy flooring, etc. Remember the original purpose of the trailer: To dispense FOOD. "Pretty don't pay" as they say.
Then have an engineer look it over. You WILL find the trailer won't carry commercial kitchen equipment, like a fryer or range, and the kitchen hood, etc. So plan on beefing up the entire frame and suspension. Airstreams weren't made for that.
Absolutely, find a junked trailer. Gut it completely, and rebuild it. You won't be able to re-use ANY of the old system, including furnace, water heater, wiring, plumbing, etc. You just won't. All you want is the exterior skin, and plan on a horrendous amount of polishing!!!!
But, that's OK. You can pick up an old vintage AS for less than $5K, spend another $25-30K and have a mobile food service for $30-35K.
A great deal!!!! You couldn't open a restaurant for anywhere near that, plus you're mobile. ("Location, location, location.")
In my opinion, the Airstream will sell itself compared to a regular "box" trailer. I just walk into a place, tell them I have a vintage Airstream coffee trailer and want to lease some of their space, and I'm IN.
The eye-appeal is incredible. Everyone LOOKS!!!

I think there should be a special Airstream Concession Club!!!
Hmmm.....that might not be a bad idea!
Ed Glenn
Registry name: "aerojava" .
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Old 12-01-2011, 08:08 AM   #23
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1974 23' Safari
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1947 25' Spartan , Manor
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Edglen, great info. I totally agree about the curb appeal of the AS for a concession trailer.

So, anyone out there have any success stories (or words of caution) they would like to share as far as AS food trailers?

I've been spending a lot of time in Austin TX which has a TON of food trailers (a lot of which are vintage) so a chef friend of mine and I have been talking about building out a AS for a food trailer and I'd like to hear any thoughts...

Not that you have to share exact numbers, or anything, but any thoughts on the best things to serve (as far as profit margin and mass appeal) would be great. My family has a health inspected kitchen they own (which you have to have in VA to have a food trailer), but assuming the trailer will be a full kitchen as well. I assume coffee is a good call.
One additional benifit to these things it seems is that if something isn't working they can be re-branded easily, any thoughts on that?


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