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Old 08-05-2004, 10:43 PM   #1
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Painting Airstream

I am considering painting my 65 Airstream in knowing it can be done. There is a specialized painter in my area (specializing in helicopters and aircraft) with 28 years experience in painting aluminum. It would be paint silver to look as natural as possible. I know Andy does this, however; I do not have the time to travel to California. Perhaps he would share some of his knowledge and or advice.
Thanks
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Old 08-06-2004, 08:00 AM   #2
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others have painted their trailers, and motorhomes. Your painter will probably know just what to do with the experience he has. From a few feet away you can't tell paint from skin.
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Old 08-06-2004, 08:09 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roswell
I am considering painting my 65 Airstream ... silver to look as natural as possible.
I don't get it. Why would you paint it silver to look "natural" (like aluminum?) when you could strip whatever's on there and leave it aluminum? Isn't that kind of like painting woodgrain all over a piece of mahogany furniture?
Sorry, maybe I'm not understanding.
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Old 08-06-2004, 08:46 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by bredlo
I don't get it. Why would you paint it silver to look "natural" (like aluminum?) when you could strip whatever's on there and leave it aluminum? Isn't that kind of like painting woodgrain all over a piece of mahogany furniture?
Sorry, maybe I'm not understanding.
What it is all about; is not having extensive long term maintenance! From some examples I have seen, they look great.
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Old 08-06-2004, 10:07 AM   #5
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Hmm. Haven't seen one, but if you think it looks good, go for it! Still sounds crazy to me... maybe you'd better glance over some of the threads on waxing and keeping a shiny polish, before investing in a silver paint job.

If you could find something reasonably close in maintaining your bare aluminum, I'd consider it carefully. If the paint job looked bad in 5 or 10 years, you risk lowering the value of the whole trailer until it's all stripped off again!
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Old 08-06-2004, 10:48 AM   #6
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A properly painted (metallic silver) Airstream trailer or motorhome requires waxing once or twice a year.

Some of our paint jobs, at this point, are over 20 years old, and still going strong.

A good wax job, will increase it's life, just like the finish on a car.

Part of it is the process anf then the quality of material.

Cheap paint equals a short lived finish.

Expensive paint equals a long life finish.

You can see a painted 25 foot trailer on our web site. http://inlandrv.com

Andy
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Old 08-09-2004, 11:17 AM   #7
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Paint

Andy,
What do you recommend for preparation? Some of original clearcoat exists, of course a fair amount of "old dull grey" and a little filiform. Type/brand of undercoat, finish paint and clear coat. Do have these items for sale. I have someone wanting clean with soda blasting, what do you think? Thanks for all your help.
Darrell Lyons (customer of Inland RV).
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A properly painted (metallic silver) Airstream trailer or motorhome requires waxing once or twice a year.

Some of our paint jobs, at this point, are over 20 years old, and still going strong.

A good wax job, will increase it's life, just like the finish on a car.

Part of it is the process anf then the quality of material.

Cheap paint equals a short lived finish.

Expensive paint equals a long life finish.

You can see a painted 25 foot trailer on our web site. http://inlandrv.com

Andy
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Old 08-09-2004, 11:38 AM   #8
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Darryl.

Since the process and materials are proprietary, we will not post it.

However, if someone wants to purchase the materials, then we are happy to give them step by step information.

Andy
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Old 08-09-2004, 12:21 PM   #9
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Andy,
That is more than fair. Thanks. We will contact you for purchase info.
Darrell


Quote:
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Darryl.

Since the process and materials are proprietary, we will not post it.

However, if someone wants to purchase the materials, then we are happy to give them step by step information.

Andy
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Old 08-09-2004, 01:21 PM   #10
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Roswell:

Look at this thread. Very nice, very detailed.
http://www.airforums.com/forum...ad.php?t=10522
Hope this helps!
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Old 08-31-2004, 08:03 AM   #11
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Greetings!
We recently bought a painted 73 23' Safari. The paint is quite dull and makes it look older than it would, had it not been painted. The inside was in such good shape that we couldn't pass it up. Has anyone ever stripped the paint off? I guess it would help to know why they painted it to begin with. We'd hate to remove the paint only to discover we need to paint it again. We'll try waxing it and see if that helps.

Newbie Happy Campers!
Marie & Randy
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Old 08-31-2004, 08:41 AM   #12
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...I guess it would help to know why they painted it to begin with. We'd hate to remove the paint only to discover we need to paint it again...
Ay! Therein lies the rub!

I always thought Argosys were the only thing painted at the factory. But one forum member has a '72 Overlander which he strongly believes was painted at the factory.

My guess on your situation is that you will probably find large amounts of Bondo somewhere on the body if you strip the paint off. Hopefully, another member can shed some light on whether or not the factory ever painted Airstreams.

Tom
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Old 08-31-2004, 10:44 AM   #13
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DesertRats52

Most paints today, will turn dull, unless it is protected with a good clear coat (not the Airstream clear coat).

The type of paint job that you have, looks nice, for a short period of time, then slowly, changes to dull. Of course, it costs less as well.

I would suggest that you "compound" a small area first. If a gloss returns, then make arrangements to have a "clear coat" applied to your trailer.

Then you can compound the complete trailer and have the clear coat applied, as soon as possible after completion of the compounding.

Time is of the essence, since the exterior surface of the paint will once again oxidize. Then you be through with the problem, as long as you wax the clear coat once a year or so.

A cheaper option would be to compound the paint, then wax it. That will solve the problem, but only if you routinely rewax the trailer, perhaps every 3 to 4 months, depending on where you live.

Removing the paint would not be a good idea, since you may uncover far more than you bargained for. If that was the case, another paint job would be in order.

A properly prepared and painted Airstream trailer, with top shelf materials, costs about $180.00 per foot.

Andy
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Old 09-01-2004, 06:36 AM   #14
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Thanks!
I really appreciate your expert advise. So do the natural aluminum ones require just as much care? I really love the look of the shiny ones, hard to tell how old they are. We love our new "old" house on wheels.

Heading to the desert this weekend!

Marie
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