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Old 03-24-2009, 08:33 AM   #1
1 Rivet Member
Oakland , California
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 5
Help buying a good trailer

Hello all
This may not be the right forum for this post but I couldn't figure out where to put it, so I put it where there were the most people looking
I have started looking around for a trailer, didn't have any particular vintages in mind, I just like rivets.
I have not the time nor the budget to take on a restoration/renovation project. I really like the look of the newer safaris, but I also don't have $20K to drop on a trailer at the moment...
I found a 1978 Tradewind in reportedly excellent shape not too far away from me and wondered if some of you kind folks would give me your opinion on it in. I guess the most specific questions I can think of as a newb are about the layout and interior finishes, so maybe I'm not so far off in posting here...
In any case, let me present the details:
"A beauty, vintage 25 foot Airstream in great condition. Working refrigerator, heaters, etc.... excellent awning.. ready for your next trip. Easy to pull, live in, or use for camping. New Airstream curtains, middle twin beds, double front bed, back bathroom. Ready to go to its new home. $7500 OBO own a classic. Easy to pull for cross country trips. Not many Airstreams in this good of shape. Clean, no mildew, non smoking. We are the third owner this trailer has not been used much and never lived in."
From an email:
"One thing the trailer does need is either a new carpet or wood floor... we had bought the materials but haven't done the work... but this is easy... the floor is solid the trailer has never had any leaks.... the curtains were custom made by Airstream still in the box cost $700 which seems like a rip off and at the time I thought so also... we had someone go through the trailer that knows Airstream and he said the trailer is in excellent condition for a 1978... it has the best refrigerator they put into trailers... get cold really fast... it also includes the sway bar in the front to stabilize towing... this is another expensive item..."

Do folks like the layout in this particular model? I know much depends on how the space is used, but I 'm thinking there may be some general consensus? Are there any threads that anyone knows about that discuss the various layouts? I know I have seen in an ad or two a claim about "best layout ever"...
Also I read that Beatrice Foods took over Airstream for the 70s - does this affect the trailers built under their watch?

Thanks for reading and thanks in advance for any helpful comments!


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Old 03-24-2009, 08:46 AM   #2
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1967 22' Safari
1960 Caravel
Edmonds , Washington
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Welcome to the forums Jeff, Take a look HERE. It's a guide on inspecting a trailer. On the portal page on the right is a box (Airstream Inspectors) that you can get a list of people in your area that will be willing to help you inspect the Airstream and give you pointers. Good Luck!


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Old 03-24-2009, 08:48 AM   #3
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1968 24' Tradewind
Louisville , earth
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I have a 68 Trade Wind and I love it. A few points: 1) they ALL leak, its just a matter of where and how much. 2) at the price they are asking it should be in really good shape, 3) yes, the drapes are expensive, 4) about the best thing you can do is see if there are any volunteer inspectors near the camper who can give it a dispassionate look over. Go to the portal page, on the right side you will find the search tool for the inspector list. Good Luck!

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Old 03-24-2009, 08:49 AM   #4
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1972 25' Tradewind
North Vancouver , British Columbia
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I have a 1972 Tradewind with the centre twins and love it. I have been living in mine since last June (while my house gets built) with my two Labradors and find it to be just the right size. Does the rear bath have the bathtub, or is it the wetbath? Mine has the wetbath, which I personally prefer because I'm over 6 feet tall. SHowering is easier for me in the wetbath than it would be in the bathtub, because the tub is off to the side and won't let me stand fully. With the wetbath, the whole bathroom becomes your shower - the floor is a shower pan allowing one to stand at the trailer's centreline and stand upright. I find that I have plenty of storage for my needs. If I were to do it again, I might go with the centre double bed with wardrobe for more clothing storage. That or I'd take out one of the twins and build a desk/entertainment centre for the computer and television. I use the centre twins area as my lounge/office and have the front goucho/double bed made up as my bedroom.

If you can go look at the trailer, take an ice pick and poke the floor. Look for soft spots under each window, at the door, near the wheel wells and in the bathroom (if it is a wet bath, don't use the ice pick but stand in the space and feel for soft spots in the floor with your feet - you'll feel the floor give if they are there). The floor in the bathroom will likely have some issues, as it seems water ingress at the rear bumper is a common problem, unless the previous owners corrected it. Have the owner to start up all of the appliances for you so that you can test the systems and see that everything is working. Especially the fridge, water heater and furnace. Check the plumbing, looking for obvious repairs or siigns of leaks.

Good luck and welcome!
Cameron & the Labradors, Kai & Samm
North Vancouver, BC
Live! Life's a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death! - Mame Dennis
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Old 03-24-2009, 09:02 AM   #5
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Welcome from the Florida Panhandle

Welcome to the Forums. We're glad to have you with us.
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Old 03-26-2009, 08:40 AM   #6
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Oakland , California
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thanks for the replies! that one has sold, and fairly quickly too so i guess it was a good one... the search goes on!
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Old 03-26-2009, 10:14 AM   #7
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1963 24' Tradewind
San Diego , California
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Posts: 360
Keep looking, it took aprox. 10 months of daily searching the internet, local paper, etc. to find my 63 TW,

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