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Old 06-27-2013, 08:36 PM   #1
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1970 27' Overlander
Milford , Iowa
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Wheel well replacement

We are wondering how big of a job is replacing a wheel well on our 1970 Airstream Overlander. Most of the interior has been removed. Any tips would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
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Old 06-27-2013, 09:08 PM   #2
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1967 22' Safari
MILAN , Illinois
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Wheelwells

Check with InlandRV.com they sell replacement wheelwells that work on trailers with dual axles. A plus is they are not made of metal. I think the molded ones they sell are poly. Ed
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Old 06-28-2013, 03:01 AM   #3
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1976 Argosy 22
Pasadena , California
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I just replaced mine. The job isn't too bad but you need to be ok with selling out rivers, re-riveting and using some sealant... I am going to do my other wheel this weekend. I can posy photos tomorrow. Honestly the hardest part is cleaning the old sealant from the metal track...

Also, I highly recommend the wheel Wells from Inland RV. That is what I used.
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Old 07-08-2013, 11:57 AM   #4
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1970 23' Safari
Scottsdale , Arizona
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Well... it's not as easy as some would have you believe. The 1970 models (perhaps a few late 1969 and early 1971 models as well) utilized a one-piece ABS (?) wheel well, quite different from other years.

These are not the 'two-piece' insulated design with a separate inner and outer liner.

The flange around the edge sits on TOP of the frame, but UNDER the plywood floor. There are bolts going through the floor and flanges at the fore & aft outriggers. If you've got a lot of the interior removed, you're in a much better position to do it.

The interior skin is attached with screws on edge/lip, and a few more screws on the underside (exterior, above/behind tire) attached to the wheel well and floor from below.

I'll post a couple of photos from the overhaul of our 1970 Safari for reference.
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Old 07-08-2013, 01:03 PM   #5
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1970 Airstream wheel wells...

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Old 07-08-2013, 09:25 PM   #6
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1973 21' Globetrotter
Houston , Texas
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I'll second 1970 Safari's comments. Its easiest if your shell is sitting on the driveway, and the subfloor has not been installed on the frame yet. If that isn't the case, you will have to get creative. Question is, why do they need to be replaced? Mine were all kinds of jacked up--they had been squished from above, and worn clean through by the spinning wheels. Since I could not find a replacement for a single axle 70's vintage, I followed the path of some other posters and tried to patch them up with fiberglass. Well, fiberglass doesn't stick too well to ABS, so I am already regretting not having some replacements custom made out of galvanized 20 gauge steel.

Good luck!
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Old 07-28-2013, 09:29 PM   #7
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1970 23' Safari
Ham , Ontario
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Wheel well replacement...

I am restoring my 1970 20' Land Yacht and the plastic inside the wheel openings is in bad shape. The aluminum panels adjacent have no rigidity because of the poor condition of the wheel wells. Is there a company anyone is aware of who provides an aftermarket substitute?
Can anyone tell me the dimensions of the wheel well. I have found some on a site by the name of Pelland Enterprises. I am not sure if their single has similar dimensions to what I will need. If anyone knows the dimensions of the original wells, I would sure appreciate obtaining that info.
Any info about where to obtain replacements or fabrication of replacements/ best ways to fashion a new one would be greatly appreciated!
Thanks
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Old 07-29-2013, 07:41 AM   #8
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1973 21' Globetrotter
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Airhead--I wanted to replace my wheel wells on my 21' '73 Globetrotter, but looked high and low and found that "off the shelf" replacements were quite limited. There were lots of outfits selling wheel tubs on ebay, but none of them were completely enclosed, and the dimensions were always a bit off. If you look on Dave Winnick's site (vintagetrailering.com), he sells a couple different kinds of wheel tubs that look like they might fit the bill.

I checked around with some local sheet metal fabricators to see what it would cost to get some fabbed up out of galvanized sheet steel, and they typically quoted around $300 for the pair. I've attached the diagram I drew up of the wheel wells I was trying to get fabbed. No guarantee that it is the same as yours, but I'm betting it would work. I ended up patching my wheel wells with fiberglass. I have a bad feeling that this isn't going to be much of a permanent solution, but we'll see how long it lasts.
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Old 07-29-2013, 07:42 AM   #9
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I'l try to get the attachment on again... I might be steering you wrong--is your trailer a single axle, or double (the 20' length you quoted sounds like a GT, but I see Safari in your profile). The attached drawing is for a single axle trailer. If you have a double axle trailer, you can order the factory style wheel wells from places like Inland RV and Out of Doors Mart.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Wheel tub drawing.pdf (18.0 KB, 178 views)
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Old 07-29-2013, 09:11 AM   #10
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1970 23' Safari
Ham , Ontario
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Belegedhel View Post
Airhead--I wanted to replace my wheel wells on my 21' '73 Globetrotter, but looked high and low and found that "off the shelf" replacements were quite limited. There were lots of outfits selling wheel tubs on ebay, but none of them were completely enclosed, and the dimensions were always a bit off. If you look on Dave Winnick's site (vintagetrailering.com), he sells a couple different kinds of wheel tubs that look like they might fit the bill.

I checked around with some local sheet metal fabricators to see what it would cost to get some fabbed up out of galvanized sheet steel, and they typically quoted around $300 for the pair. I've attached the diagram I drew up of the wheel wells I was trying to get fabbed. No guarantee that it is the same as yours, but I'm betting it would work. I ended up patching my wheel wells with fiberglass. I have a bad feeling that this isn't going to be much of a permanent solution, but we'll see how long it lasts.
Thanks for your insight...my 1970 is actually a 20' single axle. When I made the profile the list did not include 20' for a 1970 so I went with the closest one there.
The badges indicate it to be a Safari Land Yacht.
If you could send along your diagram perhaps to my email it might help get me started. Email to: 9114me@gmail.com
Thanks so much and any continued information is thoroughly appreciated.
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Old 03-09-2016, 03:31 PM   #11
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1970 27' Overlander
Helena , Montana
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Hi all, has anybody found a product that will bond to these plastic wheel wells? I've got a 1970 Overlander and one wheel well has multiple cracks and has been rubber through leaving a big hole. the PO installed new flooring so getting the old well out really isn't an option for me. I've been looking at some of the new 3M auto body products they use for fixing car bumpers and wondered if anyone has had success with them.
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Old 09-02-2016, 08:40 PM   #12
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1970 23' Safari
Denton , Texas
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http://airstreamdiary.com/the-beat-goes-on/ -- I had my wheel wells (yes the plastic ones) rebuilt by a local company that does a/c duct work. They did a fine job. Be sure and look local! http://airstreamdiary.com/a-short-day-at-ap-vintage/
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