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Old 07-04-2012, 06:04 PM   #1
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ferndale , Washington
Join Date: Jul 2012
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31' '70 Sovereign, what am I thinking?

So I'm new to all the Airstream stuff and as such I need some advise. I do my homework and try to always put my best foot forward when making a life choice. I say life choice because I'm looking at buying an Airstream to live in, not just as a fair weather tin canner but year round wrapped up in aluminum. So anything I buy needs to be livable and quality. Up for sale in my neck of the woods is a 31' 1970 Sovereign fully restored. I'll post the ad and pictures so you can see and read it all for yourself, I just need the wisdom of those that know which stream to take and which one avoid. So here it is...

Clear Title/ current registration. She is ready to roll! Clean and fresh are words best used to describe this renovation. The trailer has been gutted and every inch of it has been cleaned meticulously. The sub-flooring and old insulation were removed and replaced. The belly frame was stripped and treated with rust preventative paint and the new sub-floor is moisture treated plywood and all seams were bondoed. The cabinets were cleaned thoroughly repaired and reinstalled with new working hardware. No dark, dirty, dusty corners in this trailer.Non-smoking/no animals. The bathroom was completely dissablemed. The components were cleaned and resurfaced and and all surfaces behind the components were scrubbed and painted before the bathroom was reassemled. So it is clean and sanitary even behind the surfaces you can see. We renovated this trailer with two purposes in mind- to be used as a guest cottage as well as be completely camp functional / road worthy. All lights inside and out work. A side note: We have never used the air conditioner. We have never needed it. It blows, but it could probably use servicing. It pulls like a dream we use a Toyota Tundra.
We stripped the clear coat off the exterior and we were so pleased with it's current shine we did not feel it needed a mirror polish. However, if that's what you want, the hard part has already been done for you. Now all you have to do is polish it.
This is a 42 year old trailer and she has well earned beauty marks. She is not perfect but pretty darned close! She is definitely a head turner. It is breaking our hearts to sell her but our circumstances have changed and we have to part with her.
This is a used trailer and is being sold as-is/where-is with no warranty expressed or implied. This Airstream is in wonderful condition, but please be realistic- it is used, it is not "perfect" there are minor imperfections. We would welcome and recommend that you see it in person. We will be available to show it all of this coming week, just call and we'll set up a time. Please DO NOT email questions we will answer any questions by phone call 360 599 9606.
New subfloor, insulation and wood flooring
New bathroom and kitchen faucets
New enamel finish on bathroom sink and tub
New kitchen countertop
New upholstery
New window blinds
New hot water heater with electric switch pilot
New water pump
New battery
Newer water tanks
New- 2 Worthington propane tanks
New tires less than 20 miles on them Bias ply (so if you were to have a blowout it shouldn't shred your alluminium)
New seals and screens on all windows (all windows are fully functional windows are the big rounded style)
New caulk around all windows, vents and exterior openings
New marker lights
All latches on doors and cabinets are fully functional (most new)
New bathroom fan motor
4 burner stove works great
Dometic fridge works great propane/electric
Microwave works great
New seven wire hook up
New break-away brake switch
Beautiful blue striped curbside awning in great condition fully funtional
All lights interior and exterior are fully functional

I sure hope this works, it's my first, and I'm a touch nervous after reading so many treads about separation! THANKS!
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Old 07-04-2012, 06:31 PM   #2
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1962 24' Tradewind
1962 24' Tradewind
Canyon , Texas
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 264
Looks beautiful, in the pictures. No mention of the axles, so you might want to see about them. Other places on the forums can explain about that issue. Also the rear bath models (like yours and mine) tend to separate and sag. A quick search on the forums has a lot of info about that. LOOKS like a beauty to me.
Cheers, bill b.
1962 Airstream Tradewind
2001 Ford 7.3 Diesel
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Old 07-04-2012, 06:33 PM   #3
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1976 Argosy 22
1975 31' Sovereign
Okotoks , Alberta
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Posts: 43
Beautiful interior is what I am thinking.
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Old 07-04-2012, 10:09 PM   #4
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ferndale , Washington
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I guess I should have included the price, the asking price is $12,500. I personally don't know Airstream values, I think it's a high but I'm always being told I'm a cheap sob. So really where I'm asking is what do you all think of the price vs what's been done even with the great unknowns that may not have been done. I appreciate it all folks!
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Old 07-04-2012, 11:19 PM   #5
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Sioux Falls , South Dakota
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Sounds cheap. I wouldn't sell mine for 12,500
Click on the link to see a picture of the Sioux River falls near my home.
Eastern South Dakota is very pretty with hills, rivers, and trees.
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Old 07-04-2012, 11:28 PM   #6
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1970 27' Overlander
Espanola , Full Timer
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We paid 14 grand for this one - and it was fixed up and restored to the max. You will get a big kick out of living in one...might even change your life and the way you think!
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Old 07-05-2012, 12:21 AM   #7
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2003 28' Safari S/O
Atlanta Burbs , Georgia
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The B-52s are still flying 64 years after their introduction into the fleet in 1953. Regular maintenance and occasional rebuilds are the secret to long life. It appears you have found another in the same vein. $12,500 is reasonable if the "recently done" list is accurate.

It has a very nice interior - love the colors!
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Old 07-05-2012, 12:57 AM   #8
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Los Angeles , California
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Totally worth it if mechanics are in order. We sold our '73 Sovereign for $9800 and it wasn't anything like this one. It was all original-functional and straight but wasn't near as nice as the one you're considering. Southern California does command higher prices though.
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Old 07-05-2012, 07:10 AM   #9
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1977 31' Sovereign
Tampa Bay , ^
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 754
Images: 122
It definitely looks very nice. However, if it were me, knowing what I now know about the underside of Vintage Airstreams, for that price, I would want to see some documentation of what has been done with the floors, insulation, frame, etc. They all look in good shape until you undress them! Oh, and of course don't forget about the axles.

Good luck!
Out in the woods, or in the city, It's all the same to me.
When I'm drivin' free, the world's my home....When I'm mobile.

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Old 07-05-2012, 07:57 AM   #10
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1974 Argosy 28
Tampa , Florida
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Looks fantastic. One way to get an idea of the quality of the work is to talk to the owner and just let them go on about it. I dont think you get to that point of refurbishing an old trailer like that and not take a great deal of pride in what you have accomplished. Lets face it, if the owner did the work they not only should be able to tell you in detail the amount of time, cost and 'story' of the work, but will want to tell you all about it. That is unless its been for sale for awhile and they are tired of tire kickers and have lost the passion and just want it gone.
Also note, when someone says "We havent tested that (a/c)" assume it has a problem/problems. I would have a hard time paying 5 figures for a trailer where all the appliances havent been tested. Its really not that hard to fire up an air conditioner. If I had to guess its probably blowing but not cooling which can be addressed with out replacement, if it matters to you.
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Old 08-02-2012, 09:18 PM   #11
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1970 31' Sovereign
Rockport , Texas
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 32
Images: 2
Holy smokes!!! What a gorgeous renovation! 12,5 sounds cheap for all the labor. I wouldn't part with her for less than 15, but I'm also in the middle of a reno of the same year and model, so I know how much work it was. I would like to see pics of the frame before buying, check sag, check tanks, I've put the most labor in there. Good luck!
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