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Old 09-18-2023, 07:02 PM   #1
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Eugene , Oregon
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Getting a 1972 Tradewind 25 rolling

Hello all,

I am driving about 3.5hrs to rescue a 72 Tradewind this weekend. It has been sitting in the desert for about 25yrs in the same place.

I plan on bringing a set of wheels and tires from a 2007 along with a bunch of tools to change the wheel bearings with the plan to bring it home.

Can you tell me if the wheels/tires will fit? It appears that Airstream has not changed the wheel size over the years.

What size are the wheel studs and lug nuts on the 72? I plan on buying some extras as at least some may break.

Any other tips/suggestions? I've worked on cars a lot over the years so I think I can handle anything to do with axles/wheel bearings or races.

I was thinking of just pulling the brake shoes for the flat drive home. Towing with a F250.

Thanks!
Jeff
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Old 09-18-2023, 07:59 PM   #2
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Welcome to the Forums.

I'm not sure whether the modern 2007 wheels will be OK, but my guess would be that if they have 6 holes, then they very likely will be. I got my '73 home on a pair of new trailer wheels I bought at Northern Tool, and after renovating, I put some more modern (Airstream) mags on it, but I don't know specifically what year they came from.

Anyway, if the trailer has sat for 25 years, then there is a good chance the umbilical has not been rewired to modern standards. I would bring a set of temporary towing lights and a lead long enough to reach the back of the trailer. Also bring plenty of aluminum tape and tape up every window door and hatch that you aren't absolutely sure won't open.

If it has awnings on it, make sure they are fastened down so that they won't catch the wind and open up on the road.

Do a search in these forums for "Recovery mission" and you should find several threads offering additional advice.

Good luck!
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Old 09-19-2023, 09:55 AM   #3
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1973 23' Safari
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If your new trailer has the original axles and if they are the same as our 73 Safari were, thereís a good chance that the wheels are attached with a type of bolt that screws into the hub rather than the traditional stud/nut arrangement. Assuming that your newer wheels are aluminum, I donít know if the bolts are long enough to accommodate the thicker web of the aluminum wheels. Maybe another forum member has worked thru this before?
Good Luck, Steve
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Old 09-19-2023, 10:20 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StevenD View Post
If your new trailer has the original axles and if they are the same as our 73 Safari were, thereís a good chance that the wheels are attached with a type of bolt that screws into the hub rather than the traditional stud/nut arrangement. Assuming that your newer wheels are aluminum, I donít know if the bolts are long enough to accommodate the thicker web of the aluminum wheels. Maybe another forum member has worked thru this before?
Good Luck, Steve
Thank you for the reply. I have one picture of the side of the trailer and it appears that it has lug studs vs. the lug bolts. I am wondering about the length though, I think you could be correct, the alloy wheels likely require a longer stud that the stamped steel wheels on it.

I guess I just go buy longer studs and install them on site. I'm beginning to wonder if picking this trailer up will require two trips...
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Old 09-19-2023, 10:22 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Belegedhel View Post
Welcome to the Forums.

I'm not sure whether the modern 2007 wheels will be OK, but my guess would be that if they have 6 holes, then they very likely will be. I got my '73 home on a pair of new trailer wheels I bought at Northern Tool, and after renovating, I put some more modern (Airstream) mags on it, but I don't know specifically what year they came from.

Anyway, if the trailer has sat for 25 years, then there is a good chance the umbilical has not been rewired to modern standards. I would bring a set of temporary towing lights and a lead long enough to reach the back of the trailer. Also bring plenty of aluminum tape and tape up every window door and hatch that you aren't absolutely sure won't open.

If it has awnings on it, make sure they are fastened down so that they won't catch the wind and open up on the road.

Do a search in these forums for "Recovery mission" and you should find several threads offering additional advice.

Good luck!
Thank you for the advice, taping all the windows, etc closed is something I hadn't thought of!

Searching "Recovery mission"!
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Old 09-19-2023, 11:05 AM   #6
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RE: Getting a 1972 Tradewind Rolling

Greetings Jeff! Welcome to the Forums and the world of Vintage Airstream ownership!

While I can't precisely answer your questions, I did install the alloy wheels used by Airstream in 2008 on my 1964 Airstream without any modifications being necessary (this was in 2008). My 1964 Airstream had standard lugs and I just purchased new lug nuts to compliment the new wheels. I am running the original Henschen DuraTorque axles that were rebuilt at the factory a short time before I purchased my Overlander in 1995 so I will be replacing axles in the very near future.

The article in this link has quite a bit of data that may be of help in preparing for the first trip with your Tradewind: Preparing for the First Tow Home

The article in this link will provide data on how the original Bargman Connectors were wired on Vintage Airstreams: Umbilical Cord Wiring Diagrams

Good luck with your Tradewind! I am sure that you will enjoy the journey.
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Old 09-19-2023, 01:40 PM   #7
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Odds are rodents have chewed everything they could get to. So the wiring suggestion is sound. Wonder if you could get new axles with brakes as a precaution? Depending on distance to be towed and remoteness of location.
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Old 09-19-2023, 07:12 PM   #8
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A 72 Trade Wind 25' is a good find. The shell (or body) appears to be in good shape from the one photo you posted. And being "mothballed" in the dry southwest is also good news. Maybe less moisture damage. I believe you will thoroughly enjoy renovating this vintage Airstream into a comfortable travel trailer. You can learn alot from these Forums.

I enjoyed renovating a 1969 Globetrotter 21'. It was built similar to your trailer as 69 was the first year of the new body style. Airstream worked hard to make the new models successful and they were. I think you will find your Tradewind well built.

David
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Old 09-20-2023, 01:03 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbj216 View Post
A 72 Trade Wind 25' is a good find. The shell (or body) appears to be in good shape from the one photo you posted. And being "mothballed" in the dry southwest is also good news. Maybe less moisture damage. I believe you will thoroughly enjoy renovating this vintage Airstream into a comfortable travel trailer. You can learn alot from these Forums.

I enjoyed renovating a 1969 Globetrotter 21'. It was built similar to your trailer as 69 was the first year of the new body style. Airstream worked hard to make the new models successful and they were. I think you will find your Tradewind well built.

David
Thank you for the comments. I am hoping for the best as well. The interior seems to be complete without modifications as well.

I have been digging around on the forums and try to soak up all the info I can!
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Old 09-20-2023, 05:08 PM   #10
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Watching this thread. I'm doing a long term renovation on a 71 Globetrotter. Very similar to your Tradewind just a bit shorter.
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Old 09-20-2023, 09:43 PM   #11
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Watching this thread. I'm doing a long term renovation on a 71 Globetrotter. Very similar to your Tradewind just a bit shorter.
What a massive project you have undertaken! I know this could be a project like yours but I'm optimistic it isn't.

I saw that maybe you like airplanes. I have a picture of 16yr old me in my bosses Pitts S2E back in the mid 80s. I had a couple of wild rides with him over the waves and up the cliffs before he crashed it
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Old 09-22-2023, 11:00 AM   #12
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Aviation has been the focus of my work history for over 45 years, I built a Pitts S2B a long, long time ago..
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Old 09-23-2023, 06:44 PM   #13
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My recollection for our 1975 is that the wheel bolts were 9/16Ē fine thread.

The 1970s trailers used 7.00x15 light truck tires from the factory. 225/75/15 is very close to the same overall diameter.

I believe the bolt circle on the wheels has not changed. The 2007 wheels should be fine.
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Old 09-24-2023, 11:55 AM   #14
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I have restored both a 72 Tradewind and a 72 Safari and pulled them across the country to Houston. After changing out tires and wheels and some of the basics listed. Just take it slow. This trailer is very light and you can forget it’s back there.. one thing it doesn’t have is any kind of sway control.. Probably want a factor in 72 when a station wagon could pull this but today with 18 wheelers speeding by you will want it. Look at Anderson sway units. They work well with this trailer and are easy to install. Best travels.
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Old 09-24-2023, 08:19 PM   #15
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Congratulations on your new toy !

You will face a few challenges getting it ready to tow out of the field . Most have been addressed in this thread .

Now once you get it home the fun can begin .

But before you dig in take a look at my build thread it will give you some insight at what you may find and some ideas of what to look for .

Save everything you take out until it is finished .
Good luck and have fun with the build it may take you 2-3 years to get it on the road as a modern finished Trade Wind .

You can find my build thread by clicking the link in my signature .
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Old 09-25-2023, 11:31 AM   #16
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Hello All,

We left at 7:30am Saturday and took a 3.5hr drive up the Colombia river to a little farmhouse nestled among the wheat fields outside of The Dalles OR. The trailer was in the same resting place for 25yrs. Initial inspection of the lugs and bearings was surprising, the lugs were not rusty at all and came off easily. The wheels are turned freely, no drag from the brakes or bearings. I ended up removing, inspecting, cleaning and greasing all the bearings vs. installing new bearings. This took me about 5hrs working on a make shift work bench.

The biggest struggle was getting the 2007 wheels and tires (225/75/25) on the trailer. The diameter was approximately the same as the existing tires but the width was an issue. The tires squeezed between the fender lip and the brake drum tightly, once installed they fit fine. Replacement tires will need to be a 205 or 215 to make the fit a little easier. The original tires are at least 1" narrower, they looked to be from the 80s or earlier bias ply.

Wheel studs are 1/2-20 on both the 1972 and 2007. I used the lug nuts from the 2007 without any issues.

After the bearings and new wheels and tires I struggled a bit with the non-op power tongue lift. I unbolted it (only 1 bolt left was on) but couldn't get it off due to a steel collar/ring on the shaft. I did manage to remove a clip that allowed me to turn the shaft manually to retract it.

The trip home was uneventful (except the lost AC cover), the condition is original inside, no modifications with the exception of a cassette deck. The floors seem very solid but if I jump on the rear bumper there is movement between the frame and body.

There were many items inside the trailer cabinets that had been there for decades, silverware, potato chip bag, poker chips, etc, etc. It was very fun to see what was in it.

*This trailer was in a Tina Turner video in the 80s. It is clearly seen several times.



This was the owner of the trailer in the 80-90s, a college football stadium in Oregon is named after him. I purchased it from his son.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_M...rican_football)

I'll add some pictures later.
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Old 09-25-2023, 07:30 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by turbojeff View Post
Hello All,

We left at 7:30am Saturday and took a 3.5hr drive up the Colombia river to a little farmhouse nestled among the wheat fields outside of The Dalles OR. The trailer was in the same resting place for 25yrs. Initial inspection of the lugs and bearings was surprising, the lugs were not rusty at all and came off easily. The wheels are turned freely, no drag from the brakes or bearings. I ended up removing, inspecting, cleaning and greasing all the bearings vs. installing new bearings. This took me about 5hrs working on a make shift work bench.

The biggest struggle was getting the 2007 wheels and tires (225/75/25) on the trailer. The diameter was approximately the same as the existing tires but the width was an issue. The tires squeezed between the fender lip and the brake drum tightly, once installed they fit fine. Replacement tires will need to be a 205 or 215 to make the fit a little easier. The original tires are at least 1" narrower, they looked to be from the 80s or earlier bias ply.

Wheel studs are 1/2-20 on both the 1972 and 2007. I used the lug nuts from the 2007 without any issues.

After the bearings and new wheels and tires I struggled a bit with the non-op power tongue lift. I unbolted it (only 1 bolt left was on) but couldn't get it off due to a steel collar/ring on the shaft. I did manage to remove a clip that allowed me to turn the shaft manually to retract it.

The trip home was uneventful (except the lost AC cover), the condition is original inside, no modifications with the exception of a cassette deck. The floors seem very solid but if I jump on the rear bumper there is movement between the frame and body.

There were many items inside the trailer cabinets that had been there for decades, silverware, potato chip bag, poker chips, etc, etc. It was very fun to see what was in it.

*This trailer was in a Tina Turner video in the 80s. It is clearly seen several times.



This was the owner of the trailer in the 80-90s, a college football stadium in Oregon is named after him. I purchased it from his son.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_M...rican_football)

I'll add some pictures later.


Thanks for the detailed report.

Youíre right - 225 mm is about 8.85 inches, while the originals were only 7 inches wide (with a 92% aspect ratio, I believe). 225s are snug fit to get on, but they are fine once in place.

The last set of tires I had on the 1975 were LT215/75/15, and they worked very well. However, that size has become hard to find.

Ĺ-20 thread makes sense; I still think the 1975 had 9/16 bolts, but I may be mistaken.

If you decide to keep the original Armstrong A/C, you may still be able to find a reproduction cover. Inland RV had them at one time, but that business seems to be inactive these days.
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Old 09-27-2023, 07:34 PM   #18
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We were on I84 through The Dalles just a few weeks ago. It looked like a nice town from the highway. Glad you made it home without any major issues. You gotta post some "as found" photos of the outside and inside of your project trailer. You can build a very comfortable travel trailer out of this Airstream antique.

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Old 10-02-2023, 11:45 AM   #19
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I'm finally getting around to uploading some pictures. The trailer is in pretty original condition, the only thing missing/disassembled is the water heater. I was able bolt up and use the power tongue jack after I got it home.

Near term plans
Source 1 original wheel, powder coat all wheels and buy tires
Replace univolt
Install new battery and see what works!

The trailer definitely has leaks and is currently covered. The front and rear windows and missing front plastic vent cover. The floors appear to be solid.
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Old 10-02-2023, 11:47 AM   #20
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I have no idea why some of these images are rotated...
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