Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 04-03-2012, 11:35 AM   #127
Rivet Master
 
Ray Eklund's Avatar

 
2014 25' International
2006 23' Safari SE
Currently Looking...
Boulder City , Nevada
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 2,369
Tuning Up my Airstream

When you purchase an Airstream, new, you do expect things to work for awhile before needing replacement or repairs. But if you note the components within an Airstream, they are pretty much like the other trailers being manufactured. Arctic Fox was the next best trailer looked over from end to end at a RV and Trailer show in the Denver, Colorado area.

After two years and one trip to Jackson Center, Ohio to get our problem check list worked over... we are happy and content. It just took a bit of time to work around inexpensive hardware and hinges to actually feel confident the trailer was going to hold up.

I do believe that Airstream could use better hardware. Some options of major components are standard trailer options for everyone, so it is the frame and shell that you are purchasing. I am mechanically inclined, so can take on most projects myself. Like a boat, you need a tool box and be able to do your own maintenance, or the costs will discourage those having to do repairs with the "check book".

I am now content with our AS. It took some soul searching to figure out why cheap plastic components were being used (do not give me the "weight" savings blather) but it is to make a profit upon the sale. I ended up paying for my own upgrades out of pocket and my labor. Now I would be very resistant to purchase a new AS, as my 2006 is built to OUR standards and it is not the big items that bring the grief, but the little items. Plumbing fixtures, plastic tail light frames, fabrics for couches, linoleum, screws that fall out, hinges on cabinets... that drive one crazy. But after two years of tweaking the trailer... our problems are few and far between. My AS might weigh four pounds more than the original component hardware, but it works and have not failed since the installations.

CrawfordGene is being honest about his experiences. It is not "bashing the AS". Eventually you will upgrade the components that are problems and yours will be road worthy for years to come. It is just the anguish of paying through the telescopic steering orifice and your entire sink faucet weighs less than the gaskets used to keep it from leaking... not really, but it was so cheap that if fell apart within the first year. The shower plumbing came loose the first trip and fell between the shower stall and interior wall. But... not after I took five hours to figure out how to fix it to my standards at a parking lot in western Wyoming next to a hardware store. No problem since.
__________________

__________________
Ray Eklund is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 11:46 AM   #128
Rivet Master
 
mutcth's Avatar

 
2007 23' Safari SE
Central , Connecticut
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 1,632
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray Eklund View Post
I ended up paying for my own upgrades out of pocket and my labor. Now I would be very resistant to purchase a new AS, as my 2006 is built to OUR standards and it is not the big items that bring the grief, but the little items. Plumbing fixtures, plastic tail light frames, fabrics for couches, linoleum, screws that fall out, hinges on cabinets... that drive one crazy. But after two years of tweaking the trailer... our problems are few and far between. My AS might weigh four pounds more than the original component hardware, but it works and have not failed since the installations.
Ray, since I'm thinking of buying a similar used trailer to yours, I'd love to see a list of your upgrades. Seems to be a common trend of experienced Airstream ownership - upgrade and complete the job the factory almost finished...

Thanks
Tom
__________________

__________________
mutcth is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 12:24 PM   #129
Figment of My Imagination
 
Protagonist's Avatar
 
2012 Interstate Coach
From All Over , More Than Anywhere Else
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 10,327
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray Eklund View Post
CrawfordGene is being honest about his experiences. It is not "bashing the AS".
By definition, as long as you're talking about your own Airstream, no matter what bad things you might say, you're not "bashing" it. After all, if you still own it, and plan to keep it, you obviously don't hate it, no matter what's wrong with it.

It doesn't become bashing until you start talking smack about someone else's RV. CrawfordGene can tell the whole world what's wrong with his Airstream, without bashing it. If he started smack-talking about all Airstreams (including mine) then he'd be bashing.
__________________
WBCCI #1105
TAC LA-4

My Google-Fu is strong today.
Protagonist is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 12:36 PM   #130
Vintage Kin
 
slowmover's Avatar
 
Fort Worth , Texas
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 7,603
Images: 1
One can do both. It isn't exclusive by any means that problems on one trailer are not problems on all. One simply defines "problems": a cheap stove? Or wood cabinets built with staples and not screws? Only one of these is directly the fault of A/S. The other may be a matter of preference alone.
__________________
1990 35' Silver Streak Sterling; 9k GVWR.
2004 DODGE Cummins 305/555; 6-manual; 9k GVWR.
Hensley Arrow. 9-cpm solo, 15-cpm towing
Sold: Silver Streak Model 3411
slowmover is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 01:18 PM   #131
Rivet Master
 
Gene's Avatar
 
2008 25' Safari FB SE
Grand Junction , Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 10,842
I've never seen Protagonist's Interstate, but I've seen others and I suppose I could find design issues with all of them or cheap parts or whatever. The last one I was in was quite nice. Because we are not used to it, it sure felt small.

Some of the information we pass on is about what we have seen posted on the Forum. If 10 people post that in some Airstreams the water pump is installed in a way you can't get to the filter, it buried amongst other things and it is noisy because they don't put a rubber mat underneath it, I guess it is easy to conclude a bad design (ours was like that and that design has been used for decades).

But "bashing" is often in the observer's eye. The first definition is physical—a beating, violent act. From that comes a 2nd or 3rd meaning, crushing your opposition. By either definition, I don't think that has happened on the Forum.

Those of us with lots of problems have been disappointed, frustrated, critical and angry in varying degrees. The first time a bunch of problems come close together, the new owner, at first gaga in love with his or her new toy, suffers a big downer and is most vulnerable and crazed at that point. A bad dealer makes it even worse; then we feel screwed by a company without any morals. But even then, people are not "bashing", but they are angry and disappointed; they feel ripped off. Most of us keep them though some of us wondered at times whether that was a good idea. A vacation should be enjoyable, not a constant wait for another problem and another….

Other people have few or no problems. Some have more, but are willing to excuse them. An even smaller group defines "bashing" more loosely and seem to think nothing should be said—the "if you don't have anything good to say, don't say it" school of thought. Maybe they don't want their bubble burst, but for many reasons people have different tolerances for criticism.

By the strictest view, everything is an opinion and no fact is certain. I may be insane and my keepers gave me this computer to keep me from punching out people. I may not even have an Airstream. But we have to judge whether people are insane, neurotic or too critical or not critical enough. Forums will never be all that obedient and what is a fact, is flexible. All we can do is make judgments over what are facts, what may be true, who seems more rational, not always easy things to do. It is probably best to ignore the crazy posts and move on. Completely wrong advice should be countered. Do it in a nice way if you can, but be aware that to some people any questioning of their beliefs is war to them. I am still learning how to do this and I think most of us are—Forums are new to everyone, even after 10 or more years and the rules evolve.

I must go and talk to my space alien friends now and be fed by my keeper.

Gene
__________________
Gene is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 01:18 PM   #132
Rivet Master
 
rodsterinfl's Avatar

 
2006 25' Safari
Fort Myers , Florida
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 2,432
Images: 8
As a new used AS owner I must say that it is obvious that Airstreams are far from perfect. I considered other brands but I did not see better options. I was told to look at Galileo and the Evergreen element. I did. They were nice but untested and not that much different in price overall. Then there were other factors like the gentleman from a major rv brand telling me to avoid rubber-based roofs. I have since learned that is a very real concern at least in FL. TPO rubber is still rubber with some added bonuses EPDM rubber. In my climate, I have been told and shown that the roofs last about 10 years max. just for fun I priced a ballpark price on a roof replacement and was given a round about figure based on a 28 foot motor home at $4500. Another concern was parts availability. These are concerns that led me to Airstream. The larger used market was great. The other makes are new and their future unknown. Airstream, to me, was a logical conclusion.
__________________
WBCCI 8653/AIR 60240
2017 Ford F-150 3.5 Ecobeast Gen 2 3.55 Platinum
rodsterinfl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 02:14 PM   #133
JT
 
1973 27' Overlander
El Paso , Texas
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 44
Airstreams, like people, are not perfect and maybe that is why so many of us love ours. My wife thinks we save our 73 Overlander from a sad, sedentary life of over 20 years and gave her a new lease on life and possibly the two of us as well. Maybe it is our reflection in the aluminum, but we think we have developed a two-way relationship with our Airstream. After replacing the drapes, flooring, matresses, tambour doors, heating, AC, vents, entertainment systems, refrigerator, hot water heater, toilet, axels, wheels, tires, adding a gray tank, stripping silver paint off the outside, polishing, replacing or repairing panels, etc and then traveling to exciting places it becomes a relationship. And, sometimes we get upset with our relationships.
__________________
jimbob79 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 08:01 PM   #134
Rivet Master
 
Currently Looking...
Sioux Falls , South Dakota
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 843
One of the criteria that I've been using to help us "weed" our list of "possibles" to a reasonable number is the owners' forum. I'm looking for one that is fairly active and includes information on how to do various repairs and upgrades. Obviously, certain problems will come up more frequently than others, depending on coach, and that just tells me what to be especially careful of.

Does reporting a problem, or asking for advice, constitute "bashing?" I don't think so. I suppose that comments about the factory quality assurance/control issues might be considered "bashing," or maybe it is just someone reporting the the facts of modern life.

When we toured the factory last summer we were impressed with the shower that each coach gets before anything goes inside. Obviously, none of the coaches have any leak problems at that point, yet I read that leaks are a problem. Perhaps the factory ought to take each finished coach out for a 100-mile road test and then spray it again. That might find some leaks, but it would add to the final cost.

Whatever coach we buy will be a used one, and I expect that there will be items that need repair or upgrading. We are budgeting for that. One might hope that a brand-new coach would have very few problems right away, but as long as humans are designing and building things, there will always be some problems.
__________________
David Lininger, kb0zke
TAC SD-6
AIR 54240
Heartland mpg 181 (sold)
1993 Foretravel U300 (for sale)
kb0zke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 08:01 PM   #135
Capt W
 
2013 31' Classic
Jefferson , Massachusetts
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 78
Images: 1
Blog Entries: 1
I've not read every post, but I agree with the general consensus. Airstreams are a quality RV. Are thy perfect? No! Previously we owned a sailboat, a Shannon 38' ketch, recognized as one of the finest world cruising boats built. Yet, we found the need to spend considerable effort to correct unforeseen problems in order to make her perfect in our minds.

Like our Shannon, our Airstream represents a style, grace and quality of construction that speaks to our sensibilities. Both the RV and the boat attract admirors that allow us to make acquaintances and in some instances friends. I don't think we would be approached by so many 'strangers if we had not have had our Shannon or our Airstream.

See our blog at http://www.tinwheel.blogsplot.com

Drive on, be safe, be happy.

Wayne
__________________
Wayne and Sarah

Welcome aboard, Mary Joan, the Tin Wheeler

http://www.tinwheel.blogspot.com
wrochdvm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 09:34 PM   #136
Rivet Master
 
AirsDream's Avatar
 
1999 23' Safari
Perrysburg , Ann Arbor
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 914
Interesting Thread

My coach is a '99 we bought used, and so far, NOTHING has failed on it, over the course of five years and several tens of thousands of miles. I have replaced / upgraded several systems and done the "normal" maintenance, but by choice, not need.

I maintain my motor vehicles like a fanatic, but "stuff" still fails on them all the time ... alternators die, water pumps develop leaks, transmissions give up the ghost, etc.

Same with my "new" house ... the roof needs to be replaced every so often, the dishwasher dies, the sump pump won't any more ...

And remarkably, we don't go crazy over such failures with other items we own, so long as the time to failure is reasonably close to our expected mean time between failures and we're not too many standard deviations on the short end of the stick.

So I consider the Airstream to be a cut above most of the "things" I own - entropy being what it is, they all deteriorate and have to be fixed up every so often, and that's just life. But we should expect, and Airstream should deliver, a product that doesn't need a thing the day it is delivered, and sometimes that is not the case. That's simply wrong. But compared to other ownership experiences, I'm sold on the overall quality, and my little trailer just keeps on rolling along.
__________________
AirsDream is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-04-2012, 12:41 AM   #137
Rivet Master
 
2006 22' International CCD
2007 Base Camp
Elk Valley , British Columbia
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 657
I think (for myself anyway), that an Airstream owner has a certain pursuit of perfection that drives them to fix every little thing on their Airstream. Partially because it is expensive, and you want to maintain it... but partially because that is why you bought it in the first place. It's 1/2 trailer, 1/2 art. I wish the factory workers would see it the same way...
__________________
Friday is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-04-2012, 05:06 PM   #138
Vintage Kin
 
slowmover's Avatar
 
Fort Worth , Texas
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 7,603
Images: 1
I think it is that we don't consider them disposable that drives us to keep them as close to new as possible. When that is made difficult by factory practice it's when the cursing starts (nothing the automakers haven't also heard from owners). An SOB owner just trades for another one.
__________________
1990 35' Silver Streak Sterling; 9k GVWR.
2004 DODGE Cummins 305/555; 6-manual; 9k GVWR.
Hensley Arrow. 9-cpm solo, 15-cpm towing
Sold: Silver Streak Model 3411
slowmover is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-01-2013, 12:02 AM   #139
65th Anniversary CLIPPER
 
masseyfarm's Avatar

 
1996 36' Clipper Bus
Tub City , British Columbia
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 3,274
Images: 55
You think you have problems, try owning a Class A Airstream after reading the constant bashing and outright disrespect from your fellow AIRSTREAM FAMILY.

Dave



"
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fly at Night View Post
After reading a thread where the OP was very disappointed in his unit, I'm not so depressed that I need to phone the suicide hotline, but it's....it's.....upsetting."
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fly at Night View Post


Granted, I am still quite ignorant about this Airstream thing, but I am not stupid.
I suppose the naysayers or "realists" could say "caveat emptor" and "You're an idiot for not doing your homework," but I do not think I deserve that. I worked hard, was careful with my finances, and after so many years, was able to finally buy something new and shiny.
Maybe it's upsetting because I grew up poor and it seemed everyone else could afford something "new and shiny."
Or maybe it's because I bought my unit as the ultimate "escape" and any criticisms are viewed as a dead end along that path.
Oh dear.
Is the psychologist in?
p.s. Sorry for posting so many threads; I guess it's all part of that initial enthusiasm.
I will try to restrain myself now.
__________________
"LOVE and LOSS, are two of the greatest emotions one can experience. -- I went to school to learn about "WHAT GOES UP MUST COME DOWN" but I had to live my life to learn the lesson of: 'WITH LOVE THERE WILL BE SORROW'."
David Stewart. (after loosing my NAVIGATOR)
masseyfarm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-02-2013, 08:16 PM   #140
Rivet Master
 
rodsterinfl's Avatar

 
2006 25' Safari
Fort Myers , Florida
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 2,432
Images: 8
Awh, sorry bout that Massyfarm if I bashed you. I like your giant looking bus thingy! Tobe honest, this last weekend I stopped in at Camping World and they were having a big sale with a swarm of people. I confess, I looked at a used Georgie Boy 34' really beautiful class A that would make a perfect full time home. It had an office in the bedroom- desk and all and real wood everywhere. The paneled glass door and glass pane half wall to the bedroom was classy. So there, I looked at a bus type too. You just have more money than me!
__________________

__________________
rodsterinfl is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
NEW: 5th Wheel Airstream Airtrekker Boondocking 38 06-25-2016 10:52 PM
Where not to buy an airstream scorpiontimo Off Topic Forum 25 04-27-2011 06:09 AM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:00 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.