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Old 12-16-2011, 05:52 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by exthemius View Post
Doesn't it also happen whenever you have a defect in said clearcoat, like a small scrape, chip, dent, etc?
I have read that flaws in the clear coat give it a place to start. The filiform on my AS is mostly where there is dissimilar metal attachments. For example: where the stainless steel front window guard clips are riveted to the aluminum, where the Airstream name plate is attached to the side of the trailer, where the tail lights are attached to the trailer, and where the stove vent cover is attached. Very - very little filiform otherwise. I have used techniques described in other treads to control it.
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Old 12-16-2011, 06:20 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Ridgerunner3 View Post
I have read that flaws in the clear coat give it a place to start. The filiform on my AS is mostly where there is dissimilar metal attachments. For example: where the stainless steel front window guard clips are riveted to the aluminum, where the Airstream name plate is attached to the side of the trailer, where the tail lights are attached to the trailer, and where the stove vent cover is attached. Very - very little filiform otherwise. I have used techniques described in other treads to control it.
Hmm...I can say that on my '71, I have it everywhere, including in the middle of a panel without any holes, rivets, seams, etc.
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Old 12-16-2011, 06:28 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Wayne&Sam View Post
Bingo. They aren't clear coated at the factory (JC), the coating comes on the full sized sheets of aluminum they buy.
Hmmmm? That's a bit disappointing too. There are miles of "raw edges" on one of these things.

Well, I'll have to set aside an allowance for all this Wilberizing, Waxing, and Washing - the Three W's. I do understand the comments that these are "just trailers," and not space shuttles. A $60,000 trailer is simply not built to the standards of say a $60,000 car, and I better get use to that idea real fast.

I am 2 miles from the Pacific ocean. Salt will be ever present here.

Ok, here's a specific question about the actual corrosion itself. Aside from the unsightly appearance, does it destroy the metal? By which I mean the way rust destroys steel? And as a follow up, let's say in some years from now I had this corrosion - could it be all buffed out - the way I see these older mirror-like Airstream finishes?

(sigh)
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Old 12-16-2011, 07:45 PM   #18
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Corrosion will in time destroy metal. When aluminum is left uncoated it forms a protective oxide layer. When there are situations where the oxide layer can't form properly or where there are two different metals, or constant water being trapped between the clear coat and the metal surface then you have a problem. Places where I see corrosion are in nooks and cranies where there is dirt and mold etc that hold water and dirt against the surface. Also any damage to the clear coat will be a place for corrsion to start. Older Airstreams were Alclad with pure aluminum for corrosion resistance. I believe the newer ones are not Alclad. Alloys will corrode faster than pure aluminum. The clear nail polish trick is probably not a bad one. Using something like WD 40 might also help to repel water. Alclad was developed so that high strength alloys could be used on airplanes to help minimize corrosion. Unlike airplanes, Airstreams are not inspected for corrosion and other structural problems on a regular basis. Anodized aluminum is going to provide the most durable finish but is it expensive. Anodize is a way of enhancing the natural oxide layer that aluminum has. It is a conversion of the metal to an oxide or ceramic coating. There is alodine that is used as a semi anodized coating to protect aluminum. If you can alodine the surface and not change its color you would have a good way to preserve your Airstream.

Perry
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Old 12-16-2011, 08:05 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redwoodguy View Post
Hmmmm? That's a bit disappointing too. There are miles of "raw edges" on one of these things.

Well, I'll have to set aside an allowance for all this Wilberizing, Waxing, and Washing - the Three W's. I do understand the comments that these are "just trailers," and not space shuttles. A $60,000 trailer is simply not built to the standards of say a $60,000 car, and I better get use to that idea real fast.

I am 2 miles from the Pacific ocean. Salt will be ever present here.

Ok, here's a specific question about the actual corrosion itself. Aside from the unsightly appearance, does it destroy the metal? By which I mean the way rust destroys steel? And as a follow up, let's say in some years from now I had this corrosion - could it be all buffed out - the way I see these older mirror-like Airstream finishes?
(sigh)
RWG,

Grab your favorite adult beverage and prepare for an enlightening read.
Notice when the thread was started, a chronic problem that JC has chosen to ignore.



KSC Corrosion Technology Laboratory -- Filiform Corrosion




Different Types of Corrosion: Filiform Corrosion or Underfilm Corrosion - Its Causes and Prevention, by WebCorr Corrosion Consulting Services. corrosion types, corrosion forms, pipe corrosion, generalized corrosion, pitting corrosion, galvanic corros



aluMATTER*|*Aluminium*|*Forms of Corrosion*|*Filliform Corrosion

Just enter filiform corrosion in the search function above for the additional chapters.

POI...ignore the dealer add-on. Just keep the AS clean and sealed, inspect often and address the filiform as it appears.

Bob
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Old 12-16-2011, 08:27 PM   #20
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If you read the guarantee it will simply state that you will probably need to apply a renewer treatment every so many years and that if their product fails they will reapply it at no charge.
They will not fix anything they will just reapply at no charge hmmmmmm?

I think I will just clean and wax and save the $1500 and use some anti
corrosion techniques listed elsewhere on these forums.And if I fail I will reapply at no charge.
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Old 12-16-2011, 09:53 PM   #21
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They try to rip you off, by a can of Nano protection fluid, that will last 5 years and is used in the industry for this purpose
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Old 12-16-2011, 10:17 PM   #22
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Aircraft sealant for Airstream?

Great comments in previous posts. Our experience with our Airstream is limited to two seasons. I'll need to rely on previous experience with aircraft maintenance. With aircraft regardless of coating the drill is to clean, treat, inspect, remove - repeat. Nothing made of aluminum is immune. Aluminum close to salt water is less immune.

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Old 12-16-2011, 10:31 PM   #23
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$1200 for insurance that they'll replace any panels that develop filiform corrosion is an iffy proposition. $1200 for some mystery coating that's not guaranteed to do anything and has no enforceable conditions on the scammer...errrr... seller of the snake-oil is some of that old-time car salesman religion.

If you negotiated a nice price, tell Mr. Salesman to keep his snake oil and take your Airstream home. If you're still close to list, call another dealer first and see what they can do.
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Old 12-17-2011, 09:34 AM   #24
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I think it is a dealership problem. Dealership probably has a manager that is interested in how much money they can make. Selling 1500 jobs that do not cost near that much is certainly making money. Salesman may not even have a choice not to offer it. Had a friend who was manager of a local Pennys store back when they sold appliances. His comment on the add on warranties was "I know how many they can sell. If a salesman does not make that quota I just fire them and get someone who will." Airstream dealers come and go.
I am not up to date on the filiform corrosion. I do know that I have 2 trailers made in the late 80's that have been dragged all over North America and that have sat outside all their life and they still look pretty good and there is no real damage from corrosion to the aluminum. I would worry more about the steel frame rusting.
You bought a good trailer. Keep an eye on it for leaks and catch any problems if they develop. Use it. That is the best maintence plan.
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Old 12-17-2011, 11:02 AM   #25
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Filiform KSC Corrosion Technology Laboratory -- Filiform Corrosion and other corrosion will be generated when the unit is in a wet environment.
No one has addressed the need for a weaker metal to help control this.
Although the following article applies to underwater, or underground conditions, it still applies to your aluminum trailer when it is wet.
Unless you have a sacrificial metal weaker than aluminium, the aluminium will be the weakest point on your Airstream trailer.
I had a IH9670, 475 twin turbo A , with aluminum frame in the 80's and had to keep a zinc on the frame all the time. I operated on the Island, 24/7, where it has many wet days and salt roads over the winter.
The Zink has to be mounted where is is going to get and generally stay wet. On my truck I mounted it exposed to the wheel well.
Maybe, on a trailer, it could be mounted in the rain gutter behind the awning????
On my Clipper motorhome, I use an Anode Rod in the water heater and have to replace it every year.
Read this and make your own decisions.
Galvanic anode - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Old 12-17-2011, 11:29 AM   #26
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POI.... filiform is not caused by galvanic action, (dissimilar metals).

Note that under prevention methods the application of a brittle coating is suggested.
In the past that coating was applied at the AS Factory. It is now done by Alcoa. Every uncoated edge or coating defect is susceptible.


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Old 12-17-2011, 11:54 AM   #27
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I was really excited to have a new AS. Now however, I am feeling a bit taken in by the manufacturer. If you build a product where aluminum is the primary material, wouldn't you take every conceivable measure to do it properly?
Probably more conceivable measures could be taken, but even that would be incremental. The construction methods of Airstream trailers simply are favorable for corrosion to start. Holes, panel edges, etc. To the point I would not recommend the trailers to those sensitive to the corrosion and plan on lots of exposure to salt or sea air.

At least from my experience a spritz of ACF 50 or (gasp) WD40 sprayed along panel edges, rivets, the ever questionable license plate fixture, and other corrosion prone areas will at least retard the corrosion. I usually do this application before using trailer at immediate coast. This and applications of Meguairs Synthetic Spray detailer have kept my trailer looking good. My '05 has a few little spots but the appearance of this seven year old trailer is certainly one of its strong points.

I'd be likely to dismiss a $1200. treatment out of hand, but if anyone were even thinking of selling it to me, I'd want to know complete specs of product applied, with the company info provided.
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Old 12-17-2011, 01:15 PM   #28
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Most of the skin corrosion that I have seen on my 30 yrs old trailer is superficial and not a structural problem. The big corrosion problems are underneath where the wet fiberglass and water soaked floors eat away at the frame and sometimes the aluminum in contact with same.

Perry
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