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Old 06-13-2006, 04:03 AM   #1
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1969 23' Safari
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Seeking SF Bay Area info

I just joined (posted an intro earlier) and saw that there are a lot of SF Bay Area people here. Woo! So I am seeking out your local know-how since we are just getting started here.

1. I know Toscano in Los Banos is the big RV place to go for service, but is there any place closer to San Francisco/San Jose that is trustworthy and good? We just purchased a 1969 Safari and we want to have it checked out. Especially since I have been reading everything on this forum and am now freaked out by the thought of awful things like rear seperation*, floor rot and a bad axle. THANKS GUYS

2. We have room in our driveway for the short-term and possibly behind our house, but we eventually need to find affordable and secure parking for the new baby. Suggestions?

And 3... any other families/mamas with kids here? Our two girls are 2.5 and 6 months old. Would love to meet others. I didnt see any upcoming gatherings or rallies (April was the last I think?) Is there a local group that meets regularly?

I am so amazed at the amount of information on this forum. Totally impressed. Thank you! Even if it is making me paranoid with 'What-if-this-is-a-dud?' scenarios

*doesnt look like this is common in shorter (23') models with forward baths, right? whew!
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Old 06-13-2006, 07:23 AM   #2
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We store our AS at Napa Sea Ranch, which has space for 650 RVs although there are seldom availabilities. I doubt you will find a lower price anywhere in the Bay Area, $35 per month. Also, the location at the mouth of the Napa River makes it an ideal location for highway access. I-80 at Vallejo is only a few miles away and Camping World is nearby for those last minute items you may need when heading off on your adventures. Google Napa Sea Ranch if you are interested in details.
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Old 06-13-2006, 07:39 AM   #3
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If you are located over in the East Bay region, you may want to check out the RV storage at Alameda Marina. Safe, secure & well maintained. Card key operated entry gates, water off to one side, and a Marine Reserve unit off to another. You will have plenty of Airstream company too! It's on the leeward side of the island.
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Old 06-13-2006, 01:24 PM   #4
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Thanks for the tips! We are in San Mateo so both are reasonable in location, Ill check them out. Im totally shocked there is a place for as low $35 a month in the bay area, wow.
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Old 06-13-2006, 01:30 PM   #5
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The other good news about Napa Sea Ranch is that the hours of operation are generous virtually every day of the year, a bit shorter in winter naturally. We like this so we can get an early start and not be rushed to return.
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Old 06-13-2006, 02:20 PM   #6
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Yes, there's life in Bay Area...

Jennak;

Welcome! There are lots of us scattered around. We are in Sunnyvale. There are several pretty secure storage places near GM/Nummi plant on Fremont Blvd in Fremont, though not sure of space available. The other large one seems to be off Almaden Blvd in San Jose near Curtner. We are fortunate enough to be able to keep ours in fenced and gated area alongside house on conrete pad with power and water. One other option might be to look in neighborhood for people with oversized lots or RV storage room that is not used. We stored previous trailer a mile away in such a fenced area when woman bought home from former RV and boat owner, and she had neither. We paid her and it worked out well for several years.

As for outings, our local chapter of WBCCI seems not very internet-enabled, and often don't plan much in summer due to stress of attending International Rally in late June and July. Their outings (here in Silicon Valley) not always so family-friendly anyway... Look for Nor-Cal Forum Rally in October at Lake San Antonio near Paso Robles, and possible event in July somewhere in Sierra foothills if someone could get their act together... It's tough to get reservations at state/county parks for groups, and also tough to get spaces together in commercial RV parks on summer weekends when they are often full... Hopefully there will be some informal outings that people can join on relatively short notice...

Most of us recommend Ron and Toscano for Airstream-specific things because they have parts, knowledge and tools. I had experience where Camping World refused to install Fantastic Fans, or do other work, because they don't understand Airstreams and "airstream owners are so particular about the work done..." Long drive, but possible to stay over and sleep in trailer or get inexpensive room near Los Banos. Frame sag and floor rot and bad axles could happen to anyone, but might already have been addressed in your '69... There is a shop in San Jose that could do things like Air Conditioner seals, refrigerator or stove or furnace work, etc. Look at Leale's RV off Monterey Rd...

John McG
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Old 06-13-2006, 02:28 PM   #7
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Thanks John! We are looking on craigslist for local parking spaces too.
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Old 06-13-2006, 06:29 PM   #8
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For now my Caravel is stored in the driveway, but Napa Sea Ranch sounds like a good option.

Regarding getting work done....I have taken mine to Manteca Trailer (an airstream dealer/service in Manteca) and to Camping World in Fairfield. I would agree with the former post that Camping World seemed bewildered by Airstreams, they tried there best but it took longer than it should have and caused me a lot of worry. I don't think it was really the service guy's fault. They just don't seem to have the training or experience.

Manteca seemed to know what they were doing.

Now I try to fix things myself, which can be a disaster.
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Old 07-20-2006, 02:47 PM   #9
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Repairs in San Leandro

Hi

I took my '64 AS Globetrotter to Borstead and Donnick in San Leandro. They are amazing for things like brakes and axels, and were super helpful. They also had other trailer things, and I think do all sorts of repairs. They ordered unusual wheels for me, old style black ones.

510 357 0777

You live on the peninsula? I lived in Oakland until last summer, grew up in Piedmont, now we're on the coast at the Sea Ranch.

Good luck!

Peter
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Old 07-20-2006, 04:11 PM   #10
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Thanks for the tip! We just had new tires put on at Leale's RV in San Jose, but they were just ok - nice enough but overcharged/charged for stuff they didnt do (but corrected it when we pointed it out)

We just went on our first AS trip ever up to Gualala, just north of Sea Ranch. Very nice up there!
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Old 05-11-2010, 11:12 PM   #11
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North Bay checking in...

Hi SF Bay Area,

My wife, Lissa, and I live in Santa Rosa. We just got a '63 Globetrotter. We too have been trying to find a local outfit to replace our axle. I would take it down to Andy's in southern Cal since it isnt quite toast yet but it would be easier if there was a closer place. The North Bay is pretty sparse when it comes to places that will work on old Airstreams. Let me know if you know something I don't.

peace

paul
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Old 05-12-2010, 12:09 AM   #12
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We're in (unicorporated) Menlo Park; our Airstream lives in our driveway right now as we're working on it in some fashion almost daily.

So far, most repairs have been fairly straightforward; the most vexing has been repairing the rear window hinge, with removing the c-clips holding the window arms on and removing the gasket both taking far longer than seemed necessary before hand.

There's enough info here on the forums to manage many repairs; certainly swapping axles (esp. if you're sticking w/ drum brakes) is easily managed at home w/ a dolly or two, floor jack & jack stands, etc.

- Bart
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Old 05-12-2010, 02:23 PM   #13
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dont you need to weld the new axle on? i dont know how to weld at all. :| wanna help me do it? he he
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Old 05-13-2010, 01:12 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by G1obetrotter View Post
dont you need to weld the new axle on? i dont know how to weld at all. :| wanna help me do it? he he
No welding is required; it is literally a remove and replace operation. A single set of wires to disconnect, four bolts retaining the axle and two holding the shocks onto the trailer. The axles (less than 200 lbs/each) are manageable by a single reasonably strong person, easily by two. Most difficult part of the operation is getting the axles out of the delivery truck, since they're fastened together .

Any competent mechanic can handle this easily; there really is no need for an Airstream specialist for this repair. No special tools, sealants or knowledge are required. You'll want to know how to adjust your new brakes and wheel bearings, too.

- Bart
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