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Old 10-22-2014, 08:19 PM   #1
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1961 26' Overlander
DeWitt , Michigan
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 46
Vintage trailer with Vintage odors...

We have our first "project" home... and are cleaning and airing it out. Any suggestions on how to reduce the vintage odors?

She has been parked for several years and needs some TLC. I am looking at old tanks, a gutted bathroom (tub is left but that is all) and... We removed all mattresses, curtains, and mice homes and other remains (poop and skeletons)... and are getting ready to wash down the interior...

Any suggestions for a cleaning solution for the interior? Previous owners painted over the original finish....

But the exterior looks great!!

Thanks for any info or suggestions!
PS - my 5 year old love the skeletons!

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Old 10-22-2014, 08:58 PM   #2
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1956 22' Flying Cloud
1953 32' Liner
1955 22' Safari
Valley View , Texas
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welcome to the real world of vintage

Odors are withheld in the insulation and the wood. I recently found that I could only get the remaining smells out, after new floor and insulation, by replacing the wood interior. Even painting the old did not work,....I saved all the old wood for patterns and it stinks up the storage area of the shop. The burn pile is next.

"If it can't be reduced, reused, repaired, rebuilt, refurbished, refinished, resold, recycled or composted
then it should be restricted, redesigned or removed from production."
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Old 10-22-2014, 09:23 PM   #3
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New Borockton , Alabama
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I'm afraid Melody Ranch is right but some get lucky and you might too. I did on my 68 for some reason but we had a 94 that stunk from manufacturing process so bad our clothes smelled horrible when we came back from a trip and sold it. Nothing worked. I think it was the glue and adhesive they used. Your "vintage" oders might be must from humidity, mold or rodent droppings and decay. You will just have to explore and work it.
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Old 10-23-2014, 06:27 AM   #4
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1966 26' Overlander
Woodstock , Georgia
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use a good strong cleaner on everything I used Orange something and Murphys oil soap on the wood before I refinished it..
Then open up all the windows and vents and the door and air it out. Ours had lots of dead creatures in it and the odor was awful. It was a field find that had been sitting for 19 years unused.
After all that and new mattresses and curtains and flooring, and refinished wood it does not smell anymore. I have burned a few candles in there too.
If you have dead things inside the walls that might be a challenge for you too.
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Old 10-23-2014, 07:00 AM   #5
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1967 22' Safari
1978 25' Tradewind
NEW LENOX , Illinois
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On both of my Airstream projects i had to drop the bottom pan and replace the below-floor fiberglass insulation. That got rid of the old odor.

John H
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Old 10-23-2014, 03:01 PM   #6
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1961 24' Tradewind
1967 26' Overlander
1973 27' Overlander
Savannah , Georgia
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 152
I pulled my 1961 Tradewind out of a farm field where it had been for several years. Pull all the upholstery first and take up the floor tiles if they are loose. I washed down all the interior walls first with Krud Kutter - took 30 years of nicotine off the walls. The followed with a wash down of pinesol. I removed every door and drawer, lightly sanded, and followed with new satin poly. I also tried to seal all the unfinished wood surfaces to seal in odors. With all this, probably 90% of the odors went away. Before putting in new flooring, I used basement floor paint on the plywood subfloor. Since my Zolotone was in really good shape, I did not want to pull panels and replace insulation. With cleaning, sealing and MAJOR airing out and leaving vents going, it is pretty much livable again. Reminds me of how my great grandmother's old dresser smells. Not new, but "homey."
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Old 10-26-2014, 07:24 PM   #7
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1961 26' Overlander
DeWitt , Michigan
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 46
Ok... How difficult is it to "drop" the belly pan? to check the insulation for fun discoveries?
Can that insulation be accessed if we have to re-do the floor anyway?

We were going to try to wait on doing the floor until next fall...guess the smells will help us decide.

It is getting better!! Wiped down most of interior and removed all fabric covered items...working on getting to see what is rotted etc. The wood work is in very rough shape (I am sad to say!!). Taking lots of pix to try and bring her back!

Thanks again!
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Old 10-26-2014, 07:36 PM   #8
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1972 23' Safari
Camas , Washington
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Our 1972 Safari smelled BAD! but after replacing the sub floor and all the insulation the trailer now has that new car smell. No more musty odors. Here are a couple pictures of the insulation under the rotten floor we had.
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