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Old 04-22-2004, 01:00 PM   #43
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I know what I forgot.....

An easier way for me to get Roger's electric stabilizer jacks and keyless entry off his coach and installed on mine!
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Old 04-22-2004, 01:14 PM   #44
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Small Business airplanes have aluminum sheet flooring attached to rails that are drilled on top (and flush) with fixed spacing. The rails are strong enough to both support the floor and also things like seats and cabinets and such. They are not particularly large, thick or heavy...

This way, you may configure seats, cabinets and other fixtures almost to infinity without altering the basic structure, as all these are designed to mate with the fixed pattern on the rails.

If AS did that, we could get greatly-expanded configuability of our floorplans, and best yet, if they kept the spacing the same, we could easily upgrade the interiors of older AS with newer components, as we wish -- the best part is that all you have to do is unbolt them to move things around -- quick connects and standard busses can be used for electrical and water components...you could have a bunk-bed module to use when you bring extra kids, and install it like seats in a van...at worst, it would offer the ability to semi-customize things if cost requires AS to fix locations of things like the water heater, the galley, and the shower and such.

The aluminum sheet floor screws into captive fasteners that allows access to under-floor areas for maintenance or wiring upgrades. The bulk of the wiring for an AS could them be harnessed and routed in the floor instead of willy-nilly like in a house, and built inside of a wiring harness shop cheaper than the wiring is run now -- no more holes in the ribs, for the most part...

It is a modular idea that works in similar situations in another type of aluminum tube...it sort of dictates using carpet to cover things...

-Rob
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Old 04-22-2004, 01:50 PM   #45
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Smile Just my thoughts

In essences, from what I’ve read so far;
What is needed within the Airstream Corporate level is, a radically new “out of the box” paradigm type of “approach to thinking” as to how they select and, test materials used in the products currently manufacture.
I would recommend but, be not limited to, the following.

  • 1. A totally new and revamped design team formed to do a material comparison against what has been used. The end goal here would be to conduct a search, using high speed computers, for replacement materials. Other equations to be factored in this process would be compatibilities of those materials with each other and, on cost verse longevity. (For example, titanium vice steel frame)
    2. Recognize that a whole new wave of inventions have sprung forth in just the last 10 to 20 years. What is it we do now that could be improved or changed to our advantage? (For example, 3M’s VHB, double sided super tape verse the use of rivets in certain areas)
    3. Re-invent the whole factory’s layout to be more efficient in the assembly and at-factory service process.
    4. Make Quality Control everyone’s prime business along the entire assembly process.
    5. Conduct, and encourage sponsorship of, a Factory Training Center. So that there will be a more uniformed pool of properly trained service technicians.
    6. Reinstate the concept of, “Life Time Warranty” for the original owner.

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Old 04-22-2004, 02:29 PM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 53FlyingCloud
[b](For example, 3M’s double sided super tape verse the use of rivets in certain areas)
Aaacckk!!! An Airstream without rivets?!! Say it aint so!!

If Airstream replaced rivets with tape in a few hidden areas on an Airstream, within five years the entire thing would be rivet-free.

Airstream's marketing would then call that an improvement. (Squarestream comes to mind)

- Charlie
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Old 04-22-2004, 03:01 PM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by idahosafari
Aaacckk!!! An Airstream without rivets?!! Say it aint so!!
FWIW there was a test model made in the 50's that was 100% fiberglass and shaped just like the then current Airstream. The unit was written about in a Vintage Advantage article.

I think that improvements can be made, while still keeping the heritage that made the marque.

Would anyone buy a Harley that looks like a Ninja???
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Old 04-22-2004, 03:46 PM   #48
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Smile I was impressed~!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by idahosafari
Aaacckk!!! An Airstream without rivets?!! Say it aint so!!

If Airstream replaced rivets with tape in a few hidden areas on an Airstream, within five years the entire thing would be rivet-free.

Airstream's marketing would then call that an improvement. (Squarestream comes to mind)

- Charlie
Charlie,
I know the feeling..But, take a look at this project and, then think about all those leaks people have had. (Yours truly included)
This was quoted from Rob Gray's website.
Quote:
That's 2mm aluminum checker plate, it is fairly heavy and will look weird but it will take a hammering and that's what I want.

So how is this sheeting attached? Pop rivets?, tech screws?, Sikaflex? None of the above. It relies entirely on double-sided tape.

That's right, double-sided tape. But this is not your average hardware store mirror tape. It's 3M VHB (Very High Bond) and believe me, this stuff sticks. When I asked the 3M rep what I do if I make a mistake placing the sheet he simply said "You don't make mistakes".

Apparently the minute you press the sheet a 20% bond is created. At this point you need an air chisel to remove the sheet (destroying it in the process).


So the first thing we needed was a method of placing the sheet in exactly the right place. Bob and I came up with a solution, as follows...
Step 1. Shape the sheet as required then clamp it in position.
Step 2. Drill two or three pilot holes large enough to allow a pop rivet mandrel to be inserted.
Step 3. Remove the sheet and enlarge the holes in the body to a size appropriate for the pop rivet body.
Step 4. Insert pop rivets and hand pull so the rivet is firm, but don't pop. This will leave the mandrels sticking out from the body, thus creating some locating pins.
Step 5. Prepare the body for your VHB (I'll describe this later).
Step 6. Press the tape to the body and peel back the non-stick backing slightly from each strip of tape. Stick the backing to one side with masking tape.
Step 7. Hang the sheet on the mandrels ten or so mm off the tape.
Step 8. Starting at one end/side or the middle as appropriate for the situation, remove the backing entirely and press the sheet home.
Step 9. Now pop the rivets leaving them behind the sheet.
Step 10. Fill the small locating holes if you feel it's necessary.
There, that was simple wasn't it. Now what about preparing the body for the VHB tape.
If possible remove any paint, loose material etc then clean the areas to be taped with the appropriate 3M cleaner (I think you can use hydrocarbon thinners but I decided to use the official cleaner).
You should have a large supply of clean, lint-free rags for this job. The cleaning should take the form of a single stroke on each section of rag. Once you've wiped with an area of the rag it is dirty and should not be re-used. Also do not rub backwards and forwards as this simply moves the dirt from one place to another.
This should leave you a nice clean steel frame, something like this...
Now add the VHB tape...
Note that I haven't taped the cross member, I don't think it's necessary to tape everywhere and besides, VHB is very expensive (about $1.25 a foot). However this depends on the sheet size, larger sheets may need to be taped through the middle.
I plan to paint the entire interior with the Barrier 2000 insulating paint but if I'm not careful there will be some Achilles heals. The small areas behind the sheet that are not covered with tape, if these are not painted now I will never have another chance.
Now I add a bead of sealant to the cross member so there is no metal-to-metal contact to cause noise and possibly electrolysis.
Once the sheet is applied I run sealant around all the joints at the back and, eventually, paint the entire inside with Barrier 2000.
Here's a link to the site.
refer: Construction diary #23
http://www.robgray.com/index.htm
Then click on "Motorhome", once there..click on "Enter the Wothahellizat pages". Go to "Diary" then, "Construction Diary # 23"..(In fact, the whole process makes for some darn nice reading~!)
It works~

ciao
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Old 04-22-2004, 03:54 PM   #49
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Not an engineering issue, but.......

If I were an AS exec, all AS's would be Land Yachts and the model name would indicate the size, like in the good old days It was soooo much simpler then.
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Old 04-22-2004, 06:29 PM   #50
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Re-add the black tank flush to the CCDs!
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Old 04-22-2004, 06:47 PM   #51
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my number one gripe is the debris that gets sweeped into the basment (tank area) during assembly!

real nice suprize to find unused rivets, sawdust, bits of snipped off sheet metal. short pieces of wire etc. next to and possibly rubbing on the holding tanks!

other than, that gavanize the frame and use s.s. fasteners on the exterior!

john
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Old 04-22-2004, 08:46 PM   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by argosy20
And while I am thinking, how about moving the fresh water tank to under the floor, between the frame rails inside the belly pan,near the axle, or just in front of the axle on multi-axle units, Terry
Terry..mine is the water tank on the 75 Sovereign 31' is just ahead of the axle. 'Course they made up for it with the black and gray tanks being waaaay out the back

Aaron
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Old 04-22-2004, 09:05 PM   #53
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Stainless, stainless,more stainless. If it ain't al-U-minium.....it should be stainless......... series 400 or 600.

marine grade stainless toilets & sinks.......
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Old 04-22-2004, 09:39 PM   #54
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A stronger frame overall, that would allow bike racks and trailer hitches on the back. Would be nice to pull a "pup" trailer or boat trailer behind the A/S. A stronger frame may also allow things like on board multi-fuel generators capable of powering the air conditioning unit(s). Another idea to would be to have an extended tongue option to allow the bike racks or generator mounting.

Super bright LED lighting.

As others have stated, why not bring back the Argosy's? Saw a nice "Squarestream" style Argosy pull into the campground for the night this week. Sharp, clean looking unit. Can't imagine the logic in discontinuing a product line because it outsold another.
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Old 04-22-2004, 09:48 PM   #55
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i like the multi fuel generator idea, how about adding an airconditioning unit to the gen set? then you could cool the trailer with the gen set directly and avoid the electrical losses!

when i worked on the railroad the coaches were cooled with a propane powered waukeshaw engine coupled directly to the a.c. compressor and lighting was handled by a bank of 32 volt batteries. the batteries were charged by a generator run off one of the axles!

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Old 04-22-2004, 10:05 PM   #56
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Go Airstreaming

If I were an Airstream engineer...I'd go camping in an Airstream every chance I got. The success of the brand, and it's longevity are [famously] the result of the daily practical use of the product itself by "the original" Airstream engineer. What better way to improve the product then to spend quality camping time in the product, meeting with and living the lifestyle of it's loyal customers.

OK, that said, family friendly improvements like stowable bunks would be great, modular interior concepts and interior upgrade paths for older units would be amazing. And the ability to bring more "stuff" like Mtn. Bikes and Kayaks.
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