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Old 06-10-2012, 11:24 AM   #1
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1956 30' Sovereign of the Road
Huntsville , Ontario
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Assuming it's a '56 Sovereign?

We just towed home our first project and I would like some help confirming it's vintage! Research has left me wondering?? Serial # 5083 but it's a bit questionable because of the makeup of the trailer. It has 13 panel front & back so I'm not sure if it's 55,56,57 or 58. It's registered as 58 on the Ontario ownership (which didn't come with the trailer!) so I'd like some help from the experts??! It sounds like the 13 panels changed to 7 panels in 57-ish so I'm perplexed. It had a curbside stove & furnace and a door within a door (if anyone knows where I can find that replacement that would be terrific).

PS - It sat in a park for 40yrs and we towed it home on the orig tires without any problems! Few parts missing (door & some windows) but as i said, it's a project...we just could leave it for someone to ruin! If nothing else, it can be a garden shed in our yard and sit beside our 96 Excella!!!

Any experience is appreciated...thanks.
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Old 06-10-2012, 11:34 AM   #2
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1956 22' Safari
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Thumbs up Congratulations and welcome to the 13-Panel club!

First things, first - I would get new tires on it ASAP! You don't want it to have a blow-out...next, post some pictures for us all to see! Pictures, we ALL like pictures!

Looks to me from the info provided (VIN #) that it's a Ohio built (13-panels front & back opposed to whale-tail in back), 1956 Sovereign. Pictures of yours could confirm this.

Oftentimes, the registration is issued & dated when the trailer was sold and registered by the first owner - not when it was built. It's not uncommon to have a trailer built one year and registered the next...

Shari
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Old 06-10-2012, 12:06 PM   #3
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1956 30' Sovereign of the Road
Huntsville , Ontario
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Did I mention it's a 30ft 1956 SOR

From the ads we've been reading it seems that it's a rare find? Is that true at all, or is it just sales hype!?

Any knowledge on parts?
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Old 06-10-2012, 12:36 PM   #4
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Generally, speaking - the older the trailer > the rarer it is. SOTR, being the longest trailer made in the line, there were probably fewer made/sold than the shorter lengths in the middle of the line. The shortest ones like the Bubble &/or Caravel would also have fewer. It's a typical bell curve.

As far as parts, check out Vintage Trailer Supply - they have the best selection of items for 50's trailers...also, Inland RV has some crossover parts, but they are better for 60's & 70's rigs. Another source is the AirClassifieds (tab @ top of page) and eBay, RV salvage yards and rally swap meets.

Good luck & have fun!

Shari
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Old 06-10-2012, 12:49 PM   #5
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If it is an Ohio built trailer, it should have an "O" in front to the serial number, otherwise I would bet on an California built trailer. Are the front and rear end caps vertical or is the rear sloped?

Bill
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Old 06-10-2012, 01:55 PM   #6
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1956 30' Sovereign of the Road
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It's O for Ohio...

Sorry, I forgot the O for Ohio. The front is vertical & back is sloped.
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Old 06-10-2012, 02:00 PM   #7
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1956 30' Sovereign of the Road
Huntsville , Ontario
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Restoration Swap Meets

Are there any Airstream Restoration Swap Meets coming up this year?
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Old 06-10-2012, 03:27 PM   #8
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Most rallies are opportunities for swaps regardless of if it is an organized "swap meet" or not. I know the RMVAC rally coming up next month always has a great swap meet - everybody always bring their "trailer part treasures". Also the Four Corners Unit's Restoration Rally has a great one - but it's going on THIS weekend, so you'd have to wait until next year for that one. Check to see if there are any Vintage Airstream Club or other vintage rallies that you could visit.

We've also have good luck placing "Parts Wanted" ads in the classifieds for hard-to-find parts. It may take awhile, but we have always been sucessful eventually. Persistence pays off.

Shari
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Old 06-10-2012, 07:57 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by InsideOut View Post
First things, first - I would get new tires on it ASAP! You don't want it to have a blow-out...
I wouldn't rush into tires until you're planning to use it, unless you need to tow it some distance in the mean time. Trailer tires usually need to be replaced due to age before they wear out, and you don't need new tires on it while you're working on it.

I'd love to see some photos! It sounds like a great find.
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Old 06-10-2012, 09:11 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by DavidsonOverlander View Post
I wouldn't rush into tires until you're planning to use it, unless you need to tow it...in the mean time.
Agreed.

Shari
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