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Old 07-12-2004, 04:47 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AYRSTRM2
BTW, if your husband is an electrician, ignore this post!
He's not! If he were I'd just keep my mouth shut!

Quote:
Originally Posted by AYRSTRM2
I hate to say this, but slow down. take a breather from ripping stuff apart. Clean up and take stock of what you have that is salvagable, and wipe some grime off of the camper. Sweep out the dust. It'll brighten your surfaces and your day. Then, start making a list. Go around and catalogue what needs to be done. If in doubt, post a picture.
John
You just spoke the exact words I said to my husband. Last night I finally talked him into stopping the panel ripout, and into taking the stuff we gutted to the dump. He was just stomping right over the piles of crap we pulled out and he just left them on the trailer floor! So we had a looooooooooooooooong talk, and also a debate over who knows more; the six people who all tell me the same thing on airstreamforums or Jeff, who has never done this in his life. Then I agreed to go get hamburgers and he would finish cleaning what he tore out and take it to the dump today. We'd sweep it, and think about repairing the frame and belly pan before we started ripping out any more walls. The trailer isn't going anywhere. We're also going to attend a rally or something to talk to others about interiors and stuff, and think a bit more about what comes first.

I can't complain; he's just really enthusiastic and wants to hit the road, and is excited about the project. But I would really be disappointed if he, in his eagerness, made a big decision that ended up being an expensive disaster, and all our airstreaming hopes will be dashed. Granted, I'm overly cautious, but then I look at pictures of burned out trailers and I would just cry if it came to that. He'd apologize forever and I'd forgive him, but wouldn't it be nice to NOT have that happen at all?

It's a remodel to our own specs, not a restoration.

i.
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Old 07-12-2004, 06:32 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sneakinup
On a happier note, what color curtains are you going to put up?
LOL Bless your heart!
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Old 07-12-2004, 06:48 PM   #31
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different wire.

here's another wire I found. Doesn't this look kinda burned? I know I'm obsessing but I don't want to remove panels!
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Old 07-12-2004, 07:09 PM   #32
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If it is, it is on the outside of the cable = not from the wire itself. If the wire created heat, then the plastic insulation on the individual wires would show it, melting, slagging, char. What's interesting, is that cloth type sheathing on the outside of the cable? It looks like it is, but I need you to tell me for sure. If is, that stuff gets pretty dirty. I really think it is water damage.

Keep me informed.

John
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Old 07-12-2004, 07:14 PM   #33
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Nothing wrong with the last wires in your photo. What you are looking at is just the outside sheathing with the paper wrapper. It just gets old looking and deteriorates with age. Put it is still doing it job.

What you need to concern yourself with is the black and white part and it is perfect.
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Old 07-12-2004, 07:29 PM   #34
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Whoa There Pinkmingoes, I agree that you guys are rushing to judgement.

I am not an electrician but the wiring looks alright to me.

This new "rumor" about bracing before removing interior walls is interesting but I am not sure how accurate. Obviously if you want to re-use the old panels it will be easier if the trailer is level and firmly supported (underneath with jacks etc) before you remove and when you replace. I wouldn't intentionally alter its position unless necessary. However if you do or if working underneath necessitates moving it, I wouldn't be overly concerned. Just re-level it and then replace one panel inside when the time is right. If that panel will not "plumb" up back (near) its original position, go and tweek the jacks til it is about right. I am not aware of ever reading of this dilemma before. I mean if we are talking a quarter of an inch, I think it can be handled. If an inch or more I think it could still be adjusted out.

Be careful in letting ever thing you read get you down...or up for that matter.
Just cause you read it on the forums doesn't mean its near right. There's even a disclaimer posted somewhere sometimes.
Go slow, be happy, have a wine cooler. or a vanilla coke. Or a triple scotch.
Oh and Ingrid be thankful you have a helper with so much energy. Course it takes so much more (plus money) to put it all back together.


One thing that would be of great help to all of us would be for the factory to come clean with some dates on the aluminum wiring usage.

Another thing to you Ingrid, do you still intend to send that seller in Wisconsin a Christmas card? You guys went along way to pick up a trailer that needed so much rehab. Is that what you all expected?
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Old 07-12-2004, 08:26 PM   #35
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hi y'all....

Quote:
Originally Posted by roadeo
Another thing to you Ingrid, do you still intend to send that seller in Wisconsin a Christmas card? You guys went along way to pick up a trailer that needed so much rehab. Is that what you all expected?
Ingrid takes a deeeeeeep, cleansing breath. And a vanilla diet coke.

We did some more talkin and guttin and whackin' and loadin' just now. Last truckload goes to the dump tomorrow.

The key to a successful marriage: compromise. He had apparently spliced off the burnt cover of the wiring so the picture(s) I showed you were not accurate. I do remember him asking for some wire strippers. He doesn't ever lie to shut me up (as far as I can tell!!) So there was a burnt wire. The rest are probably fine, but I conceded to letting him rewire the trailer.

He conceded to just fishing through new wires instead of yanking off panels. I agree that after all the work we put into this thing, it would be a crying shame to have a fire. Plus the discussion about the cost of a new aluminum interior vs. veneer over the existing, etc. He conceded to slow down and realize this thing ain't going anywhere...we can think all we want before we start a'rippin things apart.

And yes...unbelievably, we have been dreaming of doing this airstream rehab for about three years before I finally registered here at the forums...we specifically wanted a "good shell" with an interior that needed complete gutting, but still had the stuff in it, hubby wanted to see what was there "before". But anything with an interior with any degree of good condition would be a waste to rip out and we knew we wanted to start over.

We anticipated it all: rotted floor, ripped up belly pan, every appliance broken...mice poop...the works...the seller was very honest and up front about the condition, sent tons of pictures, and went above and beyond to make sure we got it home safely. He even lent me his mountain bike for an unforgettable ride in Wisconsin on beautiful 35 mile trail that was once a railroad route. Oh yeah...he's getting more than a Christmas card, we're going to show up for an unexpected visit and park the rehabbed trailer on his farm!! DING DONG!!! (just kidding, rickstream...we'll call first )

For the record, we paid $1400 for the trailer; and even now I still look around, and can't find anything resembling what we want for that price. Trailers in worse condition are going for more.

So we've worked out our pace in this airstream epic...and as sappy as it sounds, it works: Love, Honor, Negotiate.

Thank you everybody! I feel all warm and fuzzy! (maybe that was a triple scotch after all).

ingrid
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Old 07-12-2004, 08:39 PM   #36
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Ingrid

The only problem with not pulling the skin off the inside to rewire is a little thingy the electrician's call grommets.


The little yellow things the wire runs through in the rib are called grommets, extremely hard to pull wire through, if not impossible. When I replaced the floor in my Airstream I pulled all the lower sheets out and when I put thwm back was pleasantly surprised all the holes lined up. The only place I had any luck fishing wire was in the end-caps. You can get a 50' fish tape from Harbor Freight for $4.99. Good luck and keep looking at the overall.
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Old 07-13-2004, 05:10 PM   #37
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Partial panel remove...

I have indeed removed all of my interior panels for several reasons that have nothing to do with the wiring. I am hoping not to have trouble putting them back in but time will tell about that. At any rate I have a couple of thoughts to add to your thinking about whether or not you need to take the interior off to fix the wiring.

1.) It seems to me that virtually all of the wiring that I have examined in my rig has a lot of extra wire in the wall. The wire is generally attached to the inside of the outer skin with some plastic clips. Some of these have broken and are a bit brittle with age. The point is that you might be able to get more wire to come out of the hole if you do a bit of carefull pulling. In some cases I am seeing several feet of extra wire in the wall.

2.) Most of the wiring seems to make it up to the center of the ceiling on my unit. The general approach to the wiring seems to have been to go up to the center area, travel along the length of the trailer until in the right area and then to drop down the wall to the desired location. The point about this is that you might be able to fix most any of the wiring that turns out to have problems by taking off the center ceiling panel and working from there. Again the wires seem to be attached to the sides of the trailer here and there with plastic clips that could easily be broken with a bit of a pull if you need to. With the inner skin in place the wires are not going to fall out if you break a clip to get the necessary access. Examining the wires in the central core area might give you a much better feel for overall condition too. My wiring in general was a lot dirtier where it came out of the wall than it is further inside too. Having said that I did have some trouble getting the center panel out. You might check out the thread I started about this:

"Top-center interior panel problem?"

It is supposed to come out fairly easily according to the service manual but needed a lot of persuasion in my case. I do not know if your trailer has the same style of center panel mounting either.

If you do work from the center panel to replace a given wire just remember to tie a strong cord to the old wire before you pull it up to the center area. That way you can easily pull the new wire back in to position using the cord.

I hope some of this helps,

Malcolm
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Old 07-13-2004, 05:25 PM   #38
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According to my notes (yes I've been keeping a little notebook on Airstream trivia for about 5 years now) aluminum wiring was used for about an 18 month period from 66-68.

Leonard - did you move your trailer at all while you were putting the floor in, or did it stay in one place?

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Old 07-13-2004, 05:26 PM   #39
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Where to brace...

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeepinAudiophile
I have gutted my 68 tradewind 24', but did not brace it. I was un-aware that we had to do this, as it did not come up in any other threads i have read. I have everything out of the interior, all the panels are off, pvc and copper pipes removed, water heater, furnace, etc... I had begun to move on to the belly pan, but after reading this i am affraid. Should i get to bracing right away? If so, where do i brace it.
You should brace you rig at some point but I doubt that you have hurt anything so far. From what I have read about this in the forums you may see some problems getting the inner skin back on if you do not brace the unit back into more or less the original position. My inner skins are off and all the plywood is out in preparation for a full floor replace. I took off about half of my belly pan too. My conclusion about bracing is that it is most important for the back of the trailer if the front is being supported by the tounge jack. Refer to my posting in the following thread to see a photo of what I did to support my unit:

"getting to the belly pan?"

I had my rear supports in place before I took the inner skin off. Even so what I am thinking about doing before I start to put it back on is to check the vertical alignment of the frame along its lengh. If the back is still sagging a bit then I will crank it up as needed before attaching the inner skin. I am wondering if I should over compenstate a bit and crank it a bit higher than needed. Another thing I noticed is that with everything out of my trailer there does not seem to be a huge tendency to sag in the back. I can tell this because there is not a lot of weight on the back supports.

If you have not seen it yet you might want to look at the thread entitled:

"Shell Off vs Shell On Summary"


There is a lot of good info there about floor replacement and etc. I have a posting near the end (on page 4) titled "Time to post a progress report..." where I posted some information about my floor removal work. Are you planning to replace your floor?

I hope this helps,

Malcolm
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Old 07-13-2004, 05:46 PM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken J
According to my notes (yes I've been keeping a little notebook on Airstream trivia for about 5 years now) aluminum wiring was used for about an 18 month period from 66-68.

Leonard - did you move your trailer at all while you were putting the floor in, or did it stay in one place?

Ken
Ken
I moved it about 5 miles with half of the floor out. Had no choice. I lost the option on the location where I started doing the repairs. But it didn't seem to have any adverse effect, the lower wall sections lined up perfectly when I reinstalled them.
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Old 07-13-2004, 09:42 PM   #41
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thats what I figured - I moved mine 50 miles with the floor still in, but all the rivets out of the wall panels - just didn't take them out and nothing has moved.

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Old 07-13-2004, 10:30 PM   #42
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thats what I figured - I moved mine 50 miles with the floor still in, but all the rivets out of the wall panels - just didn't take them out and nothing has moved.

Ken
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Have you gotten an air riveter yet? I got a Dayton from ebay, best investment I ever made. Installed all of the panels in about 4 hrs.
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