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Old 01-16-2021, 06:01 PM   #1
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1965 17' Caravel
Marietta , Georgia
Join Date: Dec 2020
Posts: 5
New owners of a 1965 Caravel!!!

Hey there so excited to find this community. We just took the plunge after dreaming and looking for a vintage Caravel for years we finally found one in great condition and all we have to do is tweak it for our liking. We have never RV'd in the past and heck don't even really know how to pull a trailer but we are taking it easy and so excited to start this chapter.

We actually took a road trip to pick it up and camped our first night so are jumping in feet first. Here are a few of our initial questions if anyone has any input we would be so grateful.

1. Shower curtain, what the heck, there are snaps in the ceiling, is there a pattern for one, can you find one anywhere?

2. Should there be a second curtain or folding door before you get to the shower area/wet bath?

3. There is an odd shaped chase on the kitchen counter that comes from the fridge area to the upper cabinet. My guess is it is a vent for the propane fridge. If our was converted to electric do we still need that chase. Would love the counter space and to replace the counter top.

4. There is a vent hood fan but can't find a switch anywhere, any idea how to turn it on?

5. Gaucho cushion puzzle. I think with some modifications that the prior owners made our cushions are not correct. They gave us an "extra" cushion but it was actually two cushions sewn together. So I think from pictures that should go on the side gaucho. There was no back cushion on the front gaucho so I think the one from the side goes there however the front gaucho does not pull out, should it? It appears it may have been screwed together so it does not pull out? So I think I have it figured out just need to know if the front gaucho should slide out at all and if it should have legs like the side one? I think it can all be fixed with some simple carpentry.

Thanks all and appreciate the help with any of these questions, so excited to get started.
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Old 01-16-2021, 06:31 PM   #2
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2020 23' Flying Cloud
Sebastian , Florida
Join Date: Nov 2019
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What size is your trailer? Floor plans vary.
Tension rods or suction hooks can be very handy in a trailer, and may get you by (with a generic shower curtain) until you can find something to match the original design.
I like your trailer! And, you have the appropriate adventuresome spirit to own a vintage Airstream! (You’ll understand better as time goes by.)
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Old 01-16-2021, 06:47 PM   #3
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1965 17' Caravel
Marietta , Georgia
Join Date: Dec 2020
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Thanks so much. It is a 17 foot model.
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Old 01-16-2021, 06:48 PM   #4
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1966 22' Safari
1955 22' Flying Cloud
Fredericksburg , Texas
Join Date: May 2015
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maggard2, welcome to the vintage Airstream world. Your questions are valid and can be simply answered. Iíve helped friends work on a couple of Caravels but donít remember much about them. The fiberglass vent scoop above the fridge has value if you decide to remove it. The front gaucho may have had Walter of Wabash slides. If it didnít, it may lend itself to those to allow a larger bed. You have come across a popular trailer. Others will chime in with specific answers. We Look at some pictures on Vintage Airstream Archives/Pictures. Good luck and stay safe.
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Old 01-16-2021, 07:16 PM   #5
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1986 34' Limited
1975 27' Overlander
Conifer , Colorado
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Greetings from Colorado and welcome. Congratulations on your vintage trailer find and jumping in the deep end. I believe you will find these Airstream Forums very informative as you begin to ask questions. Airstream still makes a small trailer as they are very popular. I like vintage trailers but I prefer the long, long ones; kinda like Lucy of years ago.

I'd like to refer you to the Airstream Knowledge Base found near the bottom of the Forums tab. Find Caravel and then find your year 1965. Now stay up all night reading all about other's adventures with this trailer. This is a good category to ask questions about your trailer also. For example, title could be "65 Caravel shower curtain". Other Caravel owners prowl around here and are very knowledgeable. They like helping new members.

Here are a couple links to the Airstream Inc "document archives" related to the 65 Caravel. They may help you learn more about your trailer.

David

https://www.airstream.com/wp-content...gazine-208.pdf

https://www.airstream.com/wp-content...aravel-204.pdf
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Old 01-17-2021, 09:33 AM   #6
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1973 23' Safari
Arroyo Grande , California
Join Date: Oct 2016
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Greetings Check out the website www.vintageairstream.com and select Airstream model resources and then yearly photo archives. A great source for old Airstream interiors and it looks like they do have pics of your model.
Good Luck, Steve
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Old 01-17-2021, 09:38 AM   #7
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1973 23' Safari
Arroyo Grande , California
Join Date: Oct 2016
Posts: 29
Oops, I didn’t read Bubba’s response, sorry.. great minds think alike!
Steve
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Old 01-17-2021, 10:43 AM   #8
CC
 
1972 27' Overlander
Heinsburg , AB
Join Date: Jul 2018
Posts: 197
Welcome, and congratulations! Please post more pictures. Don't let the orientation of the photos stop you. I'm told that if you resize (make smaller), they will post the right way. I'm curious about the shower curtain set up; can't visualize it. Not sure if this helps, but my range hood fan is activiated when I open the vent using a rod/lever right next to the vent in the upper cupboard.
CC
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Old 01-17-2021, 01:46 PM   #9
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1965 17' Caravel
Los Angeles , California
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 24
Congrats! I too own a 65 caravel and I SO love it!! Mine is modern on the inside but still has the glamour of airstream. I too was a COMPLETE newbie when I bought and just took it slow and only took next steps when really comfortable- I’m still learning.

I’d like to thank David for posting those links o the magazine articles- I have not seen those before and really love that history- thank you so much!!!

Paige
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Old 01-17-2021, 02:47 PM   #10
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1966 17' Caravel
Pine Plains , NY
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 161
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Maggard2, welcome to the Forum and to the Caravel Club [there isn't one, but there should be, because we are a fun lot!]. This is a great resource for new vintage trailer owners - I got a 1966 Caravel in mid-summer 2019, and have just finished restoring it...as close to original as I can. Based on that "journey," I am able to answer a number of your questions:

"1. Shower curtain, what the heck, there are snaps in the ceiling, is there a pattern for one, can you find one anywhere?"

I just wrote a detailed post about the shower curtain (I believe I have an original), the ceiling track and the placement of the snaps. Click on my link below and go to Post #178 - it will tell you more than you probably ever wanted to know about a Caravel shower curtain! If I had to guess, you probably are missing the track. If you will post a photo of the bathroom ceiling, the group can possibly help you with that.

"2. Should there be a second curtain or folding door before you get to the shower area/wet bath?"

Yes - the original trailers came with a plastic folding door. On the edge of the curbside (CS) bulkhead, you should see a small metal plate (unless it was removed). You pull the folding "door" from the streetside (SS) to the left. I've attached a couple of pictures of the one I had made - I used the original door as the "pattern" and harvested as much of the original hardware as I could to create it. I have posted about this too! hahaha! [warned you!] [Post #166] I still have the carcass of the original door, so I could give you the dimensions. You can purchase these at Walmart, etc. for a lot less hassle...and $$ (but I wanted cloth and am glad I did it).

"3. There is an odd shaped chase on the kitchen counter that comes from the fridge area to the upper cabinet. My guess is it is a vent for the propane fridge. If our was converted to electric do we still need that chase. Would love the counter space and to replace the counter top."

Yes, that is the refrigerator chimney. If you still have the original refrigerator, it is an ammonia heated unit - they are great and as you will learn from the forums, you should try to keep your original refrigerator if at all possible. Even if you are only going electric, you still need a way to vent the heat out of the trailer [it's a whole thing]. There are some very talented folks on the Forum, who have handled this in all sorts of ways - check out Atomic_13's tradewind resto [Post #103], and SteinVT [Post 109] - both did some first-rate venting arrangements. as you can see.

Me, I wanted to go original. But mine was too far shot and had vestiges of scotch tape. I took mine to a local Porsche fiberglass expert [that's a whole other moment...] and he used my old one to create a form and then hand-molded a new one for me. I then had that one painted by an expert vintage car restorer. It just blends right in now. [If you're interested, Posts #7 and 110] But if you are going to try a newer approach, Bubba is right - the original chimney has value for sure. I am sure someone on the forums would love to have it if you want to upgrade.

4. There is a vent hood fan but can't find a switch anywhere, any idea how to turn it on?

If you could share a photo perhaps someone can help. I also restored my fan. It has a simple on/off toggle switch and a pull-down chair to open the vent. Yup, I wrote about that too -- [Post #71] I've also attached a photo of my fan just after it was reinstalled-- it is the best picture I have of the on-off button.

"5. Gaucho cushion puzzle. I think with some modifications that the prior owners made our cushions are not correct. They gave us an "extra" cushion but it was actually two cushions sewn together. So I think from pictures that should go on the side gaucho. There was no back cushion on the front gaucho so I think the one from the side goes there however the front gaucho does not pull out, should it? It appears it may have been screwed together so it does not pull out? So I think I have it figured out just need to know if the front gaucho should slide out at all and if it should have legs like the side one? I think it can all be fixed with some simple carpentry."

Not sure if the gauchos in the 1965 are the same as the ones in the 1966. If you can take a photo of the ones you have, we all can try to help out. Surprisingly, I don't have a post on this... FOFL.

At any rate, congratulations - these are fantastic trailers...and very well laid out. Send me a note if you need any measurements or more photos! Hollie
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Restoration of my 1966 Caravel: https://www.airforums.com/forums/f13...on-210688.html
Start at Post #7.
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Old 01-17-2021, 05:57 PM   #11
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1965 17' Caravel
Marietta , Georgia
Join Date: Dec 2020
Posts: 5
Thanks to everyone for your responses so far, this is awesome and I am so thrilled with the support and answers. Had to have the brakes fixed but will have the airstream back tomorrow. So will shoot some more pics, just spending tonight digging through the information.

Flostream66 - where did you find the teak mat in your shower pan, that looks great. I found a website but did not have any vintage options. I searched your thread but did not see a source, but again I am also new to the forum and while I have found the information and people amazing, but the search feature not so much. But I am still learning probably user error.

Thanks all.
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Old 01-17-2021, 11:39 PM   #12
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1966 17' Caravel
Pine Plains , NY
Join Date: Jul 2020
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maggard2 View Post
Flostream66 - where did you find the teak mat in your shower pan, that looks great. I found a website but did not have any vintage options. I searched your thread but did not see a source, but again I am also new to the forum and while I have found the information and people amazing, but the search feature not so much. But I am still learning probably user error.
Thanks, Maggard2, that's a home-made job, using a pattern and newer teak (because it's lighter [and cheaper] than old growth teak), which I then lightened to minimize the natural orange tone of teak. The piece was built with the support slats underneath going front to back, so they would help move the flow of water to the drain.

The door to the sink cabinet is also home-made...but to keep water from going thru the slats, I used a solid piece of wood and then had a local carpenter cut kerfs to mimic the bath mat. I also salvaged the original hardware...which was a trick to re-attach...getting up from the shower pan floor was the hardest part!

Look forward to your photos. And yes, the zforum's search function is quirky...but it does lead you to the most interesting threads...I started saving the URL's for reference points because getting back to ones you've read snd want to refer to is equally challenging!
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Old 01-19-2021, 12:23 PM   #13
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1967 17' Caravel
Mukilteo , Washington
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 1
1967 Caravel

Welcome to the Caravel Club! We have a 1967 that we bought in 2008. Our interiors are very similar!

Shower curtain: I combed the web for a pattern, or a new shower curtain for our trailer. I found absolutely nothing. Iím in the middle of a multi year project, life is busy, of making a new curtain. Iíve used the old one as a pattern for the new one. Hopefully it will get installed this spring.

Vent above the stove top: Our event is just that, a vent. There is no fan involved! I sure wish there was!

Have fun!!
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Old 01-21-2021, 09:03 PM   #14
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2005 25' Safari
1968 17' Caravel
1967 22' Safari
Leawood , Kansas
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 360
Images: 7
Blog Entries: 2
Hey welcome aboard. Keep your posts coming. One little quirk of the forum platform is photos. If you open them in a program like Paint on a PC and then slightly crop them, they will stay right side up. Jerry
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Old 01-21-2021, 10:31 PM   #15
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1965 17' Caravel
Curtis Wright
San Marcos , Texas
Join Date: Jun 2009
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shower curtain

We skipped using the studs because it looked like a huge hassle. We use a fabric type of shower curtain. The top is mounted with hooks on the slide for where the folding door should be. The ends are mounted with velcro to the roof. One is above the towel rack almost at the toilet. The other is above the shower faucets. This allows for the huge and very comfortable shower. The curtain is bunched up for storage with a velcro strap that hooks to a hook on the inside post of the door opening where the folding door would go. All works very well and has for years with thousand of miles and months of traveling.
We use an Ikea mattress. It is a full size, 53" wide, that folds with one side being 30" and the other 23". Obviously the 30" stays on the base during the day and the 23" acts as the back to lean against. We initially got a 4" thick one but then got the 5" and much prefer it. I am not sure if Ikeas still sells it --you would have to hunt their website that isnt very friendly.
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Old 01-24-2021, 01:08 PM   #16
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1965 17' Caravel
Benicia , California
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 65
shower curtain

my 65 caravel has the snaps for a shower curtain, but no curtain, and not a curtain track. I just used a shower curtain from IKEA and put in snaps. to use i just snap it to the ceiling. when done you can snap it off and haul it outside to dry or hang it on one of the towel racks. I think the only trick was finding the right length curtain that reaches from the ceiling to the floor.

My bathroom folding accordian door was shot, I replaced it with one from vintage trailer supply. Not as nice as the fabric one that others have made but it works.

As other have said these forums have lots of resources.

Have fun with it!
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Old 01-24-2021, 08:06 PM   #17
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1967 17' Caravel
Pocatello , Idaho
Join Date: Apr 2007
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Welcome!

Maggard2, welcome to Airstreaming and the Forums, you will never regret joining either. The folks here are wonderfully well-informed on all things Airstream, and happy to offer that information to others.

Hope to see you down the road!

Vivian
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Old 01-26-2021, 08:36 PM   #18
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1969 18' Caravel
Vista , California
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 30
Images: 1
Shower Curtain

My '69 Carvel (18') has the snaps in the shower and I just added snaps to a custom shower curtain. My stove vent was set up for a fan but did not have it when I purchased the trailer; I took the whole metal vent assembly out; restored it and installed a fan and new switch (there is a hole for a toggle switch just to the right of the vent swing door. You should have existing wiring (12V DC) for a fan. I have the old folding curtain that separates the back from the front; however, I took it out and installed a fabric sliding curtain matching the other curtains. I still have the old Dometic refrigerator (gas and AC Electric); works great. Don't understand your cushion issue but here are pictures of my cushions. There is a smaller long cushion to make up the back bed when fully pulled out (it is behind the back rest cushion (not attached).
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