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Old 05-25-2002, 10:29 AM   #15
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Jim, you are correct. But I know of no standard of quality which considers a propane line repaired with electrical tape and hose clamp as acceptable. That one repair could of cost my family and me my life. I have a very varied mechanical background and many skills. The first thing I do on any project is inspect every system from one end to another. Had I not done so I may not be typing this now. To sell someone a unit with this type of repair and not inform them of it is criminal. The rest of the story is the seller told me he had the counter top replaced so I know the stove was disconnected by him are his agent. I sent him the pictures and he thought it was no bid deal. On used equipment I take no one’s word I inspect before I use. Life can be very dangerous for a novice restorer who believes what a seller tells him. Unless you know the person and unit you are buying take no one’s word and even then use caution.

In getting the title corrected on my trailer I did work down the line to the person who sold the trailer to the person I purchased it from, he was much more honest and I found what he told me to be true. He told me he had the brakes inspected and the wheel bearings packed, he did. Once I catch you in a misrepresentation you are on my list and I will never take you word for anything. Helps to keep you from getting hurt and losing body parts.
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Old 06-04-2002, 09:13 PM   #16
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345LE owner adds voice to this thread...

Heya

Well I read your story with interest. You don't mention what year your coach is. However, $3000 at least is really what you could expect to pay to get an older machine in working order when you first get it. If it has not been regularly serviced, and it sounds as though it was not, or even if it was, to be honest with you you did pretty good.

For your info, my coach is a 1990, it is nearly immaculate, had done only 28,000 miles when I bought it last Sept. I had to drop around $10,000 as soon as I got it back. New airbags, brakes (everything), AC unit, hmmm pretty much everything. It had been stationary for around 8 years in a hanger. All rubber was perished.

Older 454 engines need constant vigilance to be reliable, and all the other bits and pieces, well...let me say that I have usually got dirty fingernails when we are on a trip! Part of the fun though, no?

Even given the price I paid, which was very fair in my case, I now have a fantastic unit.

What we need to do is to keep the whole thing in context...at least that's what has kept me sane. <grin>

What I mean is this.

The Airstream motorhomes give you AMAZING value for money, even when you have to pay out like you did on top of a higher purchase price. You get an awesome amount of bang for your buck, and a vehicle that literally turns heads.

The alternatives are some boxy badly handling plastic generic looking piece of RV cr*p that will set you back at least *double* what your Airstream has come to!!! Oh and will depreciate faster than you can believe.

My wife and I are looking at going full time for a couple of years and had been looking at buying a Prevost 45ft. Oh my goodness have my eyebrows been raised on the cost of those.

Yep. Sell a VERY nice house in San Francisco and expect to have the same kind of monthly costs as running the house too...jeeeezh. At least we wouldnt need a pool guy. Different kind of machine....tires cost 800 bucks each!!!! So don't worry, we won't be selling the 345LE just yet!!

Good luck with it, and drop me a line if you have any questions about the 345. I have learnt alot by trial and error!

Best wishes

Will Henshall
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Old 06-05-2002, 07:42 AM   #17
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My comments reflect over 30 years around the automotive business...mechanics are in business to make a living repairing, replacing and restoring. Even the most honest and fair technician has to be somewhat of a salesperson (or have one working with him- called a service writer) in order to present to you what they feel needs to be done. In most instances there are those things that he sees need for, and those things that in reality are needing to be done. The word "need" is the operative term here. My technician (and friend) on my Porsche as an example, will give me a laundry list of the things he would do at inspection and maintenance time.
I can ususally eliminate a big chunk of this due to his perfectionist nature ( although I am pretty fanatical myself), and his need to "sell" me on the work, and my own experience. With any mechanic- from Midas mufflers up the line...they will try to up sell you what they can. "You know sir you really should replace those belts"....when they actually have 10000 miles of life left.
Replacing spark plugs and such after wires have been improperly connected sound like up sell to me. If the wires were out of sequence the timing would have been off enough to cause poor running to say the least. Even then, they would require reconnecting not replacing. Not to impune the honesty of the tech, but they are all in biz to make a living....you are their next sale and they need to get you to pay what you will while you are in front of them, as who knows? you might not be back.
I have met very few dishonest techs, but also very few who would not take the opportunity as it is presented to sell whatever he could, "in your best interest" of course.
Even my doctor does some of that.....but I tend to be a bit less sceptical of him.
Sorry about the long post here...but I have seen a lot of money spent on repairs that were not really necessary. One more comment and that is that 1300 for a transmission on a 345 sounds actually pretty fair.
I just bought a low mileage tow dinghy- 95 saturn,clean as a pin with 39k on it and the alternator left me on the side of the road on my 4 th day of ownership. So it goes.
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Old 06-05-2002, 03:46 PM   #18
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Sometimes it really pays to keep your eyes open an an ear to the ground. My daughter works at a hospital complex in Saginaw Michigan and knows that I am a big fan of Airstreams. She called me one day last fall to tell me that one of their beancounters mentioned that they had an Airstream trailer in storage which they wanted to dispose of to eliminate the storage fees.
I went to see it and found a 1980 31' tandem axle trailer which had originally been custom built by Airstream for Ford Motor Company as a mobile hearing clinic. It was in great shape other than some of the vinyl lettering peeling off the sides.
Long story short, I managed to "take it off their hands" for just $250. I listed it for sale on airstream.net/classifieds and within 3 weeks a fellow in California bought it for $3,250 and paid to have it towed to his home.
I used some of the profit to buy a nice 1960 Overlander which I am presently fixing up. If I wasn't "hooked" on Airstream trailers before, I definitely am now.

I tried to insert a pic of the '80 custom but couldn't get it to go thru. How u do that?
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Old 06-05-2002, 06:07 PM   #19
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Rog0525

How to attach a picture to your post

Good luck...it really is quite easy once you know how....

Shari
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Old 06-05-2002, 07:05 PM   #20
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Thumbs up Here's the pic

Thanks Shari, here's my $250 Airstream
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Old 06-05-2002, 08:20 PM   #21
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Dr Joe,
As you know, I have complimented you before on your direct and to the point style of communication.
However, since there are members on this board that enjoyed meeting you as well as the seller, I find it highly inappropriate for you to make a statement of public record about your personal dealings with the seller.
To take the word of a person that in my humble opinion was not at all mechanically inclined, is also a short coming on your part. Not everyone has the desire to keep their MH up to par to the degree that you and I have.
I know you spent money on your previous MH, before you handed it over to the buyer. I also sold my previous MH in top condition. The cold fact is that most MH's are sold because they will need lots of work now or in the near future. I do not believe that is the case in your situation.
You and your wife expressed interest in the MH, when you learned that it might be for sale. Your next step should have been hiring a professional to check it out and try to negotiate the sales price accordingly.
Making public statements about your perceived short comings or possible deception of the seller
does not serve the purpose of our desire to gather here.
I trust you take the above in the spirit intended.
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Old 06-05-2002, 08:54 PM   #22
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Thanks Peter for your usually succinct message. I hated to see the venting, although I can understand where Dr Joe is coming from, unfortunately he takes too literally the opinions of the tech. You have to take some of what is prescribed for your vehicle health and welfare and do what makes sense. Its a shame that so many repairs facilities look at us customers as open wallets.
As for the seller, he had what certainly seemed to be a mighty fine vehicle, and may not have been all that aware of pending problems.
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