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Old 03-07-2010, 06:30 AM   #127
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Actually, Andy, giving my family history, I'll probably go deaf naturally soon enough.

I think of Airstream renovations like the old "hot rodders" in the 50s and 60s. There were lots of theories and lots of trial and error. The biggest differences... the Airstreams have fewer moving parts and we have the Internet to swap stories rather than the local parts store.

Just a word, Tiki... someone is going to tell you the Airstream has a different design than the Avion and will flex more. My wife and I took a long look at an Avion, but we went with a vintage Airstream instead. In fact, the guy still has the '62 Avion T-27 for sale. For us, the Airstream had better headroom (a real important consideration) and dual axles. The Airstream also has a much bigger "following" which means more after-market stuff. But back to the subject, I hope people keep trying things and sharing information. Maybe not everything will work as well as we hope, but maybe... just maybe, some experiments will be successful and give future vintage owners more options.
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Old 03-07-2010, 06:45 AM   #128
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Actually, Andy, giving my family history, I'll probably go deaf naturally soon enough.

Maybe not everything will work as well as we hope, but maybe... just maybe, some experiments will be successful and give future vintage owners more options.
Sorta like our Federal government.

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Old 03-07-2010, 07:24 AM   #129
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Unless you're writing me a check, Andy, I'm paying for my Airstream experiments by myself. We're both paying for the federal government.
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Old 03-07-2010, 12:34 PM   #130
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Unless you're writing me a check, Andy, I'm paying for my Airstream experiments by myself. We're both paying for the federal government.
And then some.

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Old 06-25-2010, 09:08 PM   #131
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Being an experienced fabricator I am going to throw in my .02 First of all nothing is perfect and I mean nothing. Practically speaking though the right type of spray foam I would think would be a great addition to a trailer. Many have talked about putting up a release agent or plastic to keep the foam from bonding to the skin, I would do something that is the exact opposite, I would prep the surface to maximize adhesion. Why? it will make the trailer stronger.

Look at a cheap plastic foam filled thermos, if it had no foam the walls would be flimsy and weak, the foam core sandwich gives it good structure and strength.

My next point would be this is going to depend a lot on the materials used. For instance, a refrigerated trailer for a Semi has an aluminum skin that has foam sprayed inside of it with a plastic inner wall veneer that forms up its structure, and the refer van relies solely upon its skin to hold up loads up to 48-50,000 lbs!

If these refrigerated trailers can handle literally 1-2 million miles of bumps and ruts, road vibration and abuse having knot heads with forklifts drive in and out of them on a regular basis, why then would not doing something similar with your camper not be a good addition?

Furthermore, will an air stream see the kind of moisture conditions that a refer will see? Absolutely nothing close. A refer will see temperature extremes from 45 degrees below zero to 120 degrees above. And at the far extreme you will have conditions where the outside air temperature will be 120 and the temperature in the box will be between 0 and 40 degrees, this temperature extreme inside of a big aluminum box is going to produce some serious condensation and you will really notice if f you have seen one of these trucks that has been unloaded and the refer shut down after having been on for a few days, it will have little river running out of the back of it.

Other things to consider, what about your electrical and plumbing connectons that may require repar? For me when I do my trailer I am going to run all of the electrical in smurf tube to junction boxes that will be assessable from inside the trailer, then I can pull the wires through leaving me the ability to repair and and remove circuits after the fact.

As far as plumbing goes, I see no reason that the plumbing can not be installed after insulation, as well forming a fiberglass or aluminum race way that will not be filled with insulation in the floor sounds like a winner to me. In fact making that race way capable of holding water with a drain at the front middle and rear could serve to save you a lot of grief in the event of a leaking pipe.

As well why not expand the fiberglass pan to the area under your water heater in case it leaks? it would not be too difficult or weight that much to do the entire area under the tub giving you some added piece of mind.

The next advantage I see with this method of running the pipes is you can keep them on the warm side of the insulation for operations in winter months.

As well covering a piece of foam in fiberglass then laminating it to the back of your access doors will do a great deal of good too, along with good weather stripping, I think that an air stream could be insulated very nicely.
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Old 06-28-2010, 03:48 PM   #132
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So far, the stuff we have in the coach is working for us.
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Old 09-13-2010, 12:44 AM   #133
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Just wanted to share some BEFORE and AFTER pictures of our "under floor" Spray Foam upgrade. If wondering, I hired a contractor to apply 2lbs Closed Cell approx 3.5" to 4" thick. Before spraying, I put all wires into plastic flex lines and secured its dangling wires. Also installed a 3/4" Grey PVC for its 12V wiring. re: For its electric brake wiring. If wondering, I did NOT spray the bottom of its holding tanks. Since we only do spring, summer, fall camping at our seasonal site, its under side of each belly tank is not sprayed.

For lots of pictures, surf: Seasonal Camp Site pictures by Spike99-Pictures - Photobucket

If wondering, I'd replace the fibreglass insulation (which is great homes for critters) and replace with Spray Foam material again. This Spray Foam also secured our trailers floor movements as well. Win-win across multiple fronts.

Hope this helps others - who are thinking of installing Spray Foam as well...

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Old 08-31-2011, 11:53 AM   #134
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I own a 1986 Avion and all of the spray foam is intact like the day it was built and it's so quiet inside that it's not unusual for us to sleep in to 9 AM in a busy campground. I just noticed that they insulated around the window frames with fiberglass only and I've been considering spraying non-expanding foam but I'm afraid it may become too airtight.
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Old 08-31-2011, 03:22 PM   #135
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Another AVION vote: (from a current one for sale at Estes Park)

"1971 Avion v-25 for sale. 200 watt solar system with charge limiter installed on roof, double deep cycle batteries. Rebuilt cabinetry and remodeled interior. 2" rigid foam insulation throughout, aircraft grade plexiglass windows with removable acrylic interior storm windows. 6,000lb load distribution hitch with 2" ball.

I have spent multiple nights at -10 degrees in this trailer, and was able to maintain 60 degree overnight temps with just small electrical heaters running. This is a very functional rig that has been used for fulltime occupancy for six seasons at 7,500'.


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Old 08-31-2011, 04:50 PM   #136
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Vintage, you could remove the fiberglass and use spray foam in those spaces. The pink stuff is usually crammed in too tight in place like that and when done so, becomes a poor insulator. Be sure you use the foam that doesn't expand too much. The other stuff can distort the frame as it expands.

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Old 02-26-2012, 12:56 PM   #137
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One of my (many) silly ideas is to build an "anti-hail" rain/sun fly of sorts using flexible aluminum poles and ultra light material. While this wouldn't help with heating the Airtream, the shade and air space could make cooling the Airstream far easier.
This is not a silly idea at all. I agree with you. I've thought about putting an awning above my truck camper after I finish restoring it.

As a boater I can assure you there is a huge temperature difference in comfort inside a boat with the deck exposed and one with an awning over it. Of course, one could always park in the shade if there is any.

My idea was to use two roll-out awnings on a pair of pivoting fold out arms to create an A-frame type portable shade, like a tent. One awning horizontally would do a lot of good also but if not sloped could collect a lot of water.

I'm considered expanding the storage rack on my truck camper to hold a number of solar panels, I have two I want to install covering 44"x42". The airflow would help cool the panels to make more power. Attaching a thin rigid panel above my camper, with a fairing on the leading edge to create an air gap and shade where there are no panels is another idea I have.

The bottom line is it makes me wonder why airstream doesn't have a provision like this at the factory. I suppose it is something more suited to people who boondock like me.
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Old 02-26-2012, 12:59 PM   #138
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Hamp', where are you? How's the Airstream project going? Did you sell your house?

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Old 10-10-2013, 10:37 PM   #139
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Foam insulated rv

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Welcome to the forums. Spray on (or any) foam insulation is not a good idea. The movement of the walls and outer skin will make the foam crumble to powder. This is any foam insulation, no exceptions.
Except 1
Closed cell 2lb or higher density Foam insulation when applied properly adheres to the skin to bind the entire unit together. Minimizing the movement of the skin adds to strength and durability. I have a trailer that has been taken on the road since 2010 we have had no issues. The trailer cools down rapidly and heats very efficiently. Feels like an igloo. I have also notice increased dent protection due to the hard substance backing the skin. We have a proven method of installing electrical and plumbing to make modification or repair to the trailer a breeze. As
Far as weight goes you only add 2 lbs every 12 sq feet. Really takes a great design and product to the next level. I love the nay Sayers we have proven them wrong over and over. I use the foam for everything I even built a bathtub out of it once. Hot water stays hot a long time for those soaking moments.
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Old 10-10-2013, 10:55 PM   #140
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Actually the formaldehyde based foams have been illegal for years now. Check it out. The new foam is made from petroleum polyols, resin, and sugar. My home and trailer are both sprayed and I love it. I am all about comfort when I get the camper or home. I can't stand a cold draft when I am relaxing. I want to be cozy. The foam makes it happen. I can literally heat my camper with a candle in a metal coffee can and cool it on low even on the hot days. It is the best thing since hair grease as far as I am concerned. It must be applied by a skilled professional, however. It's pretty easy to mess it up so hire someone who is an innovator and really cares about his work. We have been foaming everything we can get our hands on since 2005 and we have not found any instances where the foam did not hold up to the rigors
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