Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 04-14-2016, 11:55 AM   #1
4 Rivet Member
trekerboy's Avatar
1979 31' Excella 500
Charlevoix , Michigan
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 335
Does it ever end?

We've been renovating our '79 Excella for almost 2 years and are finally near the end... or are we? I mean, the inside is done (well, almost), the outside is polished (most of it) and all the loose ends are taken care of (for the most part). But when you renovate an airstream, is the work every really done?

It seems like the items on my to-do list get crossed off, but more always get added on... I just notice little things and think "Oh yeah, I should finish that" or "I should really redo that before we hit the road" or even "it would be better if I did x this way instead" and of course the "well, if I knew then what I know now I would have done x differently; probably should replace it".

For those who have done complete or extensive renovations to their AS's, where do you draw the line? When is it "good enough"? I started this project to create a means for me to ESCAPE that kind of mentality, but it seems to have followed me into this new season of life (moving family of 4 in AS full time, selling everything, September 2016).

I'm guessing the advice I'm going to get will apply to other areas of my life as well. I'm 32, so those older and wiser lay it on me.

trekerboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-14-2016, 12:15 PM   #2
Rivet Master
centennialman's Avatar

2016 20' Flying Cloud
Centennial , Colorado
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 1,321
I think you draw the line when you have the peace in your mind that your Airstream is safe and comfortable. It's like owning a house. There will always be something to do. You are young and have lots of time ahead of you. Your Airstream should appreciate in value as the years go by. Take a break when you are ready, get on the road and enjoy it. It's a good time to step back and re-think what has to be done and to prioritize everything. Go to rallies and see what others have done to their Airstreams....enjoy life

Steve "Centennial Man"
centennialman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-14-2016, 12:44 PM   #3
Rivet Master
Belegedhel's Avatar
1973 21' Globetrotter
Houston , Texas
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 2,265
Short answer is "If you are asking that question, then no, it is never really done." To wax philosophical, Airstream ownership is like a sound relationship with your spouse or kids. You have to pay attention to it every day, you have to nurture it year after year if you want it to stay healthy. It isn't like a car or some other random possession, that just wears out eventually and gets replaced.

I have read many threads on these forums where the poster asks the existential question: "Should I spend the cash and buy a newer trailer that is ready to go on day one, or should I buy a cheap old vintage unit that I know will require a lot of rennovation?" My asnwer is usually "Do you want to spend your time camping, or spend it working on a trailer?" In your case it is apparent that you want to spend your time working on your trailer, as this is the decision you have already made, consciously or not. I can't offer any solution to it as, I am almost 4 years into my total

Only you can decide where to draw the line and call it "good enough." It is like the story about the millionaire that was visiting his friend the billionaire. The billionaire was bragging about his massive estate, his 100 ft. yacht, and his trophy wife. He kept asking "don't you wish you had more money so that you could buy all this stuff too?" The millionaire responded by saying "this is all very impressive, but I have something you will never have...enough money."

Good luck!
Belegedhel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-14-2016, 12:49 PM   #4
Rivet Master
drboyd's Avatar

1978 25' Tradewind
Metro Phoenix , Arizona
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,430
Owning an elderly Airstream is not a destination to be arrived at; it's a journey to enjoy.
"Between what matters and what seems to matter, how should the world we know judge wisely?" - E.C. Bentley, Trent's Last Case
drboyd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-14-2016, 01:00 PM   #5
Rivet Master
Hittenstiehl's Avatar
1961 28' Ambassador
1961 19' Globetrotter
Mesa , Arizona
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 3,261
Images: 9
Agree to the good answers posted....... It will never end till you sell's an ongoing process........a work in progress....strive for safe, good, great, fun, full of memories but not perfection.

Hittenstiehl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-14-2016, 01:36 PM   #6
4 Rivet Member
youngpeck's Avatar

1976 25' Caravanner
Salt Lake City , Utah
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 374
And the good part is you and your family are young enough to do it all and enjoy it!
youngpeck is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-14-2016, 08:40 PM   #7
4 Rivet Member
trekerboy's Avatar
1979 31' Excella 500
Charlevoix , Michigan
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 335
Originally Posted by Hittenstiehl View Post
strive for safe, good, great, fun, full of memories but not perfection.

Full of memories, but not perfection. I like that. Thank you
trekerboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-14-2016, 08:58 PM   #8
3 Rivet Member
hippiechick's Avatar
1966 24' Tradewind
versailles , Kentucky
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 185
I asked this very same question about my kitchen renovation a few years back. There were and are still things I think about doing but now in using the new space with all the changes and upgrades I have put aside some of those outstanding things to enjoy it. Living in it has softened the need to do more . . . If your trailer is safe for travel and comfy for your family then start enjoying it. There will always be time for projects.
hippiechick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2016, 08:43 AM   #9
Rivet Master
AWCHIEF's Avatar
2006 23' Safari SE
Biloxi , Mississippi
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 8,283
Images: 33
Trailers and boats have at least one thing in common. They break sitting still. There is always something that needs to fixed, adjusted or replaced. My to do list always seems to have a couple of projects on it.

Do you know what a learning experience is? A learning experience is one of those things that says "You know that thing that you just did? Don't do that."
AWCHIEF is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2016, 11:01 AM   #10
2 Rivet Member
1974 Argosy 26
Joshua Tree , California
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 35
Treckerboy, you have something now that will slip through your fingers in the future...time to build memories with your family. Every moment with your mate and children is precious. And I mean "every!" Do you want them to remember your backside as you work on the AS or your smile and theirs as you sit around the campfire. If it's safe and sound get out and start enjoying it!
StarckMad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2016, 11:44 AM   #11
2 Rivet Member
1989 32' Excella
Sharon Springs , New York
Join Date: Jan 2016
Posts: 90
Laying it on you,
You could start by quitting your whining. What did you think you were getting into? Most "vintage" cars, trailers and even people need continuous upkeep to remain functional. Not sure what your endstate is with your AS but if you are looking to camp now, just do it with what you have and let the little things go. You have to ask yourself what makes you happy, is it in just finally owning an AS (my case) or having the perfect TT. Most folks will tell you that you need to own several RVs to see the good, bad and ugly in RV ownership. The great thing about AS's is that you can change them as your needs/wants change. Appreciate what you have, instead of wishing for that level of perfection you may never find. Good Luck in your travels...
MAJORJDB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2016, 12:15 PM   #12
Rivet Master
Commercial Member
Dan@LED4RV's Avatar
Currently Looking...
Denton , North Carolina
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 695
You might think this is crazy but once you hit the road and meet others you will look back with a selective memory, of all the accomplishments here, and want to fix-up another. Then you will realize that part of your soul is in this 31 and so you will have to get another.
Dan Brown
Denton NC
Dan@LED4RV is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2016, 03:52 PM   #13

2003 25' Classic
Zanadude Nebula , Milky Way
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 11,377
Images: 1

Does it ever end?

New or Old.... it never do.

I never considered 'restoring' our '63 Safari....just get it ready to Camp, constantly, again & again & again.



Sandra wanted to go to Cleveland on vacation,
but Im the Husband, so we went to Cleveland. 😂

Its a crooked piece of time that we live in.
John Prine
ROBERT CROSS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2016, 05:25 PM   #14
Rivet Master
2015 25' Flying Cloud
2016 30' Flying Cloud
Blenheim Ontario , Ontario
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 1,264
I agree with "Centenialman".
Once everything works as it's supposed to, and it's safe for the road; "THEN leave it lay where Jesus flang it." and enjoy the trip.
My first trailer was a Starcraft 'Centennial,' and right from the factory it had so many snags that I spent ten days of my vacation time to make the damn thing roadworthy.
And then in Newfoundland, the door popped open, and the lid raised a bit; took me two hours at the campground shop to make it work properly.
After that, everything worked OK until I traded it on a Hi-Lo. And THAT was good trailer.
Too bad that they went out of business.
My 25' FC? Lots of snags to address before it worked as it should.
Now I view my new 30'er FC with trepidation with the new season coming up.
I want to spend my time enjoying the ambience of the 'camp', and not spending it on idiot snags!
In the past few years, I have purchased two Subarus, one Toyota 4-Runner, and now a Ford F-150.
EVERYTHING worked from the get-go.
Why can't the R.V. Manufacturers do the same? Many RVs cost much more than the tow vehicles.

MelGoddard is offline   Reply With Quote

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
Is this the end of my end caps? unit13 Upholstery, Blinds, Walls & Interior Finishes 9 01-02-2017 10:42 AM
Ever heard of an 11 part end cap? lstyles Airstream History 3 12-05-2010 06:54 AM
Cell Phone Use In An Airstream: Does Anyone Ever Have Trouble Getting a Signal? snog Full-Timing 50 06-05-2010 06:44 AM
When does the current year end on production? THEPILL Buyer Guidelines 7 04-20-2010 08:36 PM
Is summer ever going to end? azflycaster Off Topic Forum 29 11-09-2007 09:03 PM

Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:28 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

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