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Old 05-19-2007, 08:28 AM   #1
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How much to paint an Argosy?

1977 Argosy Minuet 6 Metre' is how long? Anyone know what silver paint job would be like that of Big Al's Airstream? Where do you get an Airstream painted? There is a local Argosy for sale from a reliable seller and I know he has poured his heart soul and sweat into the retoration of it.
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Old 05-19-2007, 09:15 AM   #2
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Carol,
6 meters is about 19.5 feet. Are you thinking about buying it?
Some people paint there own Argys....otherwise you can use a local auto body shop.
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Old 05-19-2007, 09:38 AM   #3
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How much to paint an Argosy?

Greetings Carol!

Quote:
Originally Posted by wheel interested
1977 Argosy Minuet 6 Metre' is how long? Anyone know what silver paint job would be like that of Big Al's Airstream? Where do you get an Airstream painted? There is a local Argosy for sale from a reliable seller and I know he has poured his heart soul and sweat into the retoration of it.
I had three professional body shops estimate the cost to repaint my '78 Minuet; and to compare it to the cost of polishing and Platicoating may Airstream, I converted the amounts into cost per foot:
  • Shop 1: $142.50/foot (tip of tongue to outer edge of bumper)
  • Shop 2: $155.75/foot (tip of tongue to outer edge of bumper)
  • Shop 3: $169.50/foot (tip of tongue to outer edge of bumper)
The shops all had excellent reputations with collector car owners, and each had experience with painting aluminum bodied cars. Each of the estimates were for the entire job including preparation, repairing two small dents, primer/sealer, and premium quality paints.

This was about two years ago -- I haven't had the job done yet as I would like to put it off until after making my Alaska trip in two or three years. All three shops said that I could save up to $250.00 on the overall cost if I didn't insist on the two-tone treatment, but that is one of the things that I really like about the coach so my plan is to continue with the original two-tone utilizing the original off-white for the upper and 2005 Chevrolet Colorado metallic copper paint for the banana wraps, bumper, exposed frame sections, and LP tanks.

Kevin
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Old 05-19-2007, 12:37 PM   #4
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If you look at the classifieds here Lou Patterson has his Argosy just up for sale. I have seen it and got the tour of much of his work and the new drapes and work is all fantastic. I am having trouble convincing Bradley we need a vintage and another AS so far. So if someone is interested I think it's a great Argosy to grab up. I'm still pitching it though but he isn't encouraging in the least.

Kevin thanks for the quotes. The add says once it's painted, all will be new inside and out. Sweet unit!
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Old 05-19-2007, 03:47 PM   #5
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Type of paint for Argosy

Hi - we have a 75 22' Argosy (as well as a '96 34' front kitchen Airstream) & are new to the forum.

We bought the Argosy in original condition & are upgrading the gas appliances & cosmetics.

The paint is original & could stand a repaint job.
We've painted several boat that were bigger than the trailer, so taking on a paint job on a 22' trailer wouldn't be too much of a stretch.
What type of paint is used on the Argosy? Is there a "standard" off white color? The underside, hitch, & bumper are all a rust red/orange (no, that's the color, not the condition!) Is there a standard color for this red/orange?

Thanks for any feedback.
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Old 05-19-2007, 08:38 PM   #6
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The paint was made by DuPont.
It is an Imron paint. I am not sure if it is still made or not.
I had my old 1976 Argosy 24 painted using an epoxy resin paint. It is some WICKED paint. The reason I used an epoxy resin was because a buddy of mine painted it for me. He used to do collision work on semi trucks. He had a paint booth the sixe of a house!
That paint job was expensive due to the materials used.
All-in-all you need to keep a few things in mind when painting an Argosy, or even an Airstream for the matter.
They are predominantly made of aircraft aluminum. The Argosys have galvanized steel end caps. This means you have to make the paint "stick" to the metal.
On my 1976 Argosy we used a self-etching primer. This creates little crevices for the paint to adhere to. It is awesome stuff and gives a really nice finish for the paint.
I had cross-referenced the old Imron paint codes for my Minuet. If you do a search here on the forums for "paint code" you will more than likely turn up a couple of threads concerning this.
I had planned on painting the Minuet before I sold it but since my friend, who has my next Airstream, needs to move his I am selling it with the original paint on it.
When I sold my old Argosy 3 years ago, it looked like it did when we repainted it 8 years earlier. Nothiong stuck to that epoxy paint. You would not want to try the epoxy yourself though. My buddy had to wear a suit to use it. He said something about it absorbing into your skin and into your bloodstream.
If you have ever heard of a guy out in Idaho by the name of Charley Burke you gotta see pictures of his repainted Argosy. He did a bang-up job. Charley is the most intelligent man when it comes to all things Airstream or Argosy. I have never found anyone that could match wits with him. From what I know of him, he is a retired Airstream tech. If anything he knows more than any of us on here put together. I learned a lot about these trailers from reading his posts on another forum.
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Old 05-19-2007, 08:57 PM   #7
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DuPont still makes Imron; it's most commonly used in heavy industrial and transportation applications, notably on railroad equipment. The Imron is unlike most enamels and is actually quite flexible once it's applied, making it well-suited for vehicles.

My husband's shop repainted a 1977 28' Argosy using Imron. By the time all the old paint was stripped, the dings fixed, the aluminum and steel prepped, and the Imron painted, the total job came in around $5700. It was a very, very thorough job.

A lot of money? Yes. But it looked absolutely gorgeous, and having owned polished and clearcoated Airstreams as well as an Argosy, I would vote for the Argosy. A good paint job will far outlast the clearcoat, and one could contend it's a little easier to maintain.

A Minuet, particularly one with a good body, should be less to paint, and there are some beautiful silvers in the Imron line if someone wanted to go the route Carol mentioned in her initial post. At the museum where I work, we painted a Burlington E-8 diesel locomotive in silver, and several years later, it still looks great.
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Old 05-19-2007, 09:53 PM   #8
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Southern California Price

I looked into having a 20footer painted about a month ago and was given the price of $5000. Sounded like a bit much and I chose not to buy the trailer after all. I can polish but I can not paint - back to the nuvite, cyclo and skins I said. Good luck. Rick
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Old 05-19-2007, 11:41 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Midamrail
DuPont still makes Imron; it's most commonly used in heavy industrial and transportation applications, notably on railroad equipment. The Imron is unlike most enamels and is actually quite flexible once it's applied, making it well-suited for vehicles.

My husband's shop repainted a 1977 28' Argosy using Imron. By the time all the old paint was stripped, the dings fixed, the aluminum and steel prepped, and the Imron painted, the total job came in around $5700. It was a very, very thorough job.

A lot of money? Yes. But it looked absolutely gorgeous, and having owned polished and clearcoated Airstreams as well as an Argosy, I would vote for the Argosy. A good paint job will far outlast the clearcoat, and one could contend it's a little easier to maintain.

A Minuet, particularly one with a good body, should be less to paint, and there are some beautiful silvers in the Imron line if someone wanted to go the route Carol mentioned in her initial post. At the museum where I work, we painted a Burlington E-8 diesel locomotive in silver, and several years later, it still looks great.
I will tell you what... my old Argosy 24 STILL looks like it was recently painted.
I took it down to Louisiana back in '04, just before I sold it. I had a guy come up to me and say, "When did they start making those trailers again?" I had to laugh and tell him that mine was 28 years old!
I like the painted look of the Argosy better than the Airstream silver. It looks much more pleasing to the eye. At least that is my opinion.
The problem is, I am not up to another resto project. I have far too many hobbies now and precious little time for them.
I was told to have a shop do my Minuet with me doing the stripping and removal of moldings, that I would be looking at something around 2,500-3,500 for the refinish.
If I do not sell the trailer and pull the money out of my 401k to pay for the new trailer I will be stripping it down this summer and shooting it myself. My buddy that used to do the semi's has said that he would help and that we could shoot it in the shop next to his. He no longer does the truck painting.
I figure if I do the work myself that I would save approximately half the cost.
Seeing as how the ONLY thing that I did not do myself was the axle I am pretty confident that I can shoot it myself.
Marvin and Annie, (aka happycampers), did their 26 foot Argosy themselves. It is work but, judging by their paint job, it is well worth the effort.
BTW, Midamrail, your Argosy looks AWESOME! Too bad I will be leaving the Argosy family. I am getting an '85 Airstream!
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