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Old 02-10-2010, 02:35 PM   #1
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Acting More Like a Harley Everyday

Stuff continues to break, fall off, or quit working.....all due to poor craftsmanship or materials. This AM, as we returned from our morning exercise, I noticed something dangling from the side of the Airstream......another piece of the rubrail. Trailer has not been moved since last month's Canopener.....just sitting there winterized......and, it decides to fall off! I have already reattached some pieces, and replaced others that were completely missing, with double-sided 3M tape.....appears I have more work to do. It is really bad when the neighbors (who know how much you paid for this thing), remark "Oh, there is something hanging off the side of your trailer." And, then you have to make up an excuse about maybe snagging it on your last trip.....because you're too embarassed to tell them "it just fell off."

It really does remind me of our other adventure with an "American Icon." After six years of riding a Harley Road King over 36k miles, we had invested $27k in that bike......sold it for $13k. Some of the monies spent were on doo-dads, but quite a bit was for fixing engineering mistakes and replacing stuff that "just fell off."

I'm beginning to believe that "icons" are really meant to be "driveway jewelry" or "yard art"........not for everyday use.

BTW, the wife still has a nice Harley jacket (Med), if anyone is interested.

Ron
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Old 02-10-2010, 03:15 PM   #2
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Ron,

Not that it's any consolation....your not alone.

I've been at it since 2003 with our Classic, seems it never ends, discouraging that so little has been done to improve QC.
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Old 02-10-2010, 05:14 PM   #3
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Your not alone

I didn't have trouble with things falling off but I have had to pull all the rugs out of my 2005 because of leaks and I took it back to the dealer many times....after a while I just gave up and tore out everything, removed the rugs then made sure nothing was leaking anymore before I put in Pergo flooring from front to back. I also put vent covers on and bought a portable garage so it doesn't sit out in the rain all the time. I wish people were more honest about the quality issues. Seems to me 5th wheels and motor homes are better made. O well, I paid too much to get rid of it now. Just have to keep it covered. Some day when it stops depreciating it may be worth selling. Time will tell. Good luck.
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Old 02-10-2010, 07:11 PM   #4
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Love and sometimes hate it. Reminds me of Range Rovers, expensive and always in for repairs.
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Old 02-10-2010, 08:54 PM   #5
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That is disheartning , is that a word?, have you had someone in the trailer to see if there is a vibration at 55 to 60mph? A tire out of balance or out of round will beat up your trailer pretty good. MY Harley Ultra had stuff falling apart until 11,000 miles then from then to 24,000 it was fine, all in a year and a half, I got lucky paid $18,000 as a 10 mo old factory bike and sold for $18,000.

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Old 02-10-2010, 09:12 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by bobandcarla View Post
I didn't have trouble with things falling off but I have had to pull all the rugs out of my 2005 because of leaks and I took it back to the dealer many times....after a while I just gave up and tore out everything, removed the rugs then made sure nothing was leaking anymore before I put in Pergo flooring from front to back. I also put vent covers on and bought a portable garage so it doesn't sit out in the rain all the time. I wish people were more honest about the quality issues. Seems to me 5th wheels and motor homes are better made. O well, I paid too much to get rid of it now. Just have to keep it covered. Some day when it stops depreciating it may be worth selling. Time will tell. Good luck.
Exactly what I did. I just assume it leaks even after sealing the whole thing up and spending hours on her. I bought a portable garage and when it rains I dont have to worry...

Too bad really because i used to think they were an all weather trailer and maybe they are.. I just worry less about it now.

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Old 02-13-2010, 09:21 AM   #7
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Ron, my Dad had the same problem. The chrome-look vinyl "rubrail" strip fell off one day in his driveway (just like yours). His trailer is a 2008. I believe the two-sided tape Airstream used to attach that strip was defective. Airstream mailed him a new vinyl strip (under warranty) and he had a professional auto accessories place where he lives (no A/S dealer near) attach the new one with strong two-sided tape. If you don't reattach the old one fairly soon, the length shrinks so you will need a new one. You'd think A/S would upgrade their tape and maybe they have. I haven't had anything fall off my trailer yet.
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Old 02-13-2010, 09:42 AM   #8
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In this instance, I'm thinking the rub rail shouldn't have an insert at all. We've had problems with the rub rail insert on our '74 (shrinks, cracks, falls off), and I'm beginning to think they should go back to making rub rail without any insert at all. We have friends with a '73 (never had insert), and they have necer had the problem with it falling off.
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Old 02-13-2010, 09:50 AM   #9
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I solved that annoying problem by putting a rivit through the end of each strip.....it's barely noticeable.
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Old 02-13-2010, 10:20 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Luckyducks View Post
Ron, my Dad had the same problem. The chrome-look vinyl "rubrail" strip fell off one day in his driveway (just like yours). His trailer is a 2008. I believe the two-sided tape Airstream used to attach that strip was defective. Airstream mailed him a new vinyl strip (under warranty) and he had a professional auto accessories place where he lives (no A/S dealer near) attach the new one with strong two-sided tape. If you don't reattach the old one fairly soon, the length shrinks so you will need a new one. You'd think A/S would upgrade their tape and maybe they have. I haven't had anything fall off my trailer yet.
Had the exact same problem with our Classic two Seasons ago. The "chrome" was still in very good condition so I decided to give a cheeeper solution a try.

Used this for the repair, important to get all the old adhesive tape off and clean very well with mineral spirits. So far the repair has held up well.

Used the same product on the belt moulding where it started to come apart.

POI...if you use the double sided tape 3M is the best.
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Old 02-13-2010, 10:20 AM   #11
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I've noticed over the years that "rubber" strips on anything tend to shrink. I wonder if just removing it isn't the best idea? Probably won't work because the "rubber" is covering some fasteners. Just an idea, good luck.
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Old 02-28-2010, 04:03 PM   #12
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25000 miles down the raod and my 2008 safari se 25FB is nutin but a dream
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Old 02-28-2010, 05:50 PM   #13
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Wondering....

It is interesting to read the threads that deal with quality control, most complaints seem to come from owners of 2000 and up models. So, is it a change in quality and materials from the 90's? Because these people paid so much so recently? There are a lot more 2000's owners on the forum? The 90's owners were complaining 10 years ago? I ask this not to create a stir but as I consider the purchase of a newer trailer in the future. Should I be looking for a lightly used 90's model and avoid the 2000's? I am sorry to hear about all the troubles that you guys are having with such expensive investments.

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Old 02-28-2010, 06:03 PM   #14
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Airstream inc. is killing the golden goose.I was looking for a 80k Airstream,guess what . I will buy a older model , remodeled and save my money. I am a big winner ,big loser airstream inc. PSS. Thanks all for saveing me from a new poorly made airstream trailer.
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