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Old 01-29-2010, 09:40 PM   #41
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Move on. Sell it and get something new to you. You have way too much ill feelings about this trailer. Quite posssibly you are angry, but I do believe it maybe more about grieving. Wishing you all the best.
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Old 01-29-2010, 09:54 PM   #42
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... You have way too much ill feelings about this trailer...
Of course option #2 is fix it youself, then you will know its done properly. Personal pride can then give you a sense of "You did it yourself when some ( insert appropriate derogatory adjective here ) couldn't for all the money in the world..."

Who's the better 'streamer now?
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Old 01-29-2010, 10:09 PM   #43
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Here are the invoices (There are ten pages total).
I'm numb at this point... I remember not being happy about all the money I was spending, but I don't remember spending this much.

I don't know, I really just don't know at this point...
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Old 01-29-2010, 10:10 PM   #44
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Four more.
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Old 01-29-2010, 10:13 PM   #45
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Last two. Unless my math is way off, it adds up to $35,257.98

There is the extra $1700 charge, which doesn't show up on these papers, because I had to bring it back, so the total is $36,957.98. There were other incidentals bringing me over the $37,000 mark.

Mods, you can change my screen name to Charlie Brown now.
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Old 01-29-2010, 11:50 PM   #46
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Everyone makes mistakes and occasionally, those mistakes come with a price tag. I guess in some cases the price tag is 10 pages long. I'm not saying it's right. I'm not saying it's fair. It simply is what it is.

You can always make more money; you can't make any more time. Dwelling on the past is inevitably more expensive than whatever you paid in cash dollars. For the sake of your own mental health, make a decision and move forward. The best place for a bad decision is in the rear view mirror getting smaller by the minute.
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Old 01-30-2010, 12:22 AM   #47
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Hi, I feel your pain and frustration, and I understand where you are coming from, but you claim you have owned this trailer for about five years. You have been on this forum for about five years. You have made over eleven hundred posts. And now you want to put all the blame on a New Jersey shop. In your own picture, at the time of restoration, your trailer is sitting on the ground with your tires stuck all the way up inside of your wheel wells. The top of the rims are, or look to be, level with your wheel lip mouldings. I don't see any way you could not have seen or read about what to look for in bad axles. Sometimes, instead of trying to blame someone else, [as my Mom would say] "Try looking in a mirror."
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Old 01-30-2010, 01:12 AM   #48
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I hate to say it, but really, I find it hard to blame the shop. Work billed at a hourly cost adds up, simple. It appears in the documentation that you personally visited the shop and oversaw the work. The hours may be long, but pretty well detailed as to what was done.

Would I personally pay to have the the small stuff done, no, but then I like to get dirty. Nothing wrong with that. Nothing wrong with asking the shop to do everything asked of it. I'd expect to pay for what I wanted.

I would've asked to have a free trailer wash, but that's about the only frivilous charge there.

Appliances break. RV stuff is kinda cheaply made, but expensive. While I hate the fact that my $700 fridge is kinda cheaply made, and my five year old furnace already has been in the shop twice for heat limit switches burns me, it's not the shop's fault. Actually, I was the shop, so I can't blame anyone else! I think it was pointed out before that any brand trailer would have these problems.

Good luck! Buyers remorse sucks...
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Old 01-30-2010, 09:43 AM   #49
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Originally Posted by ROBERTSUNRUS View Post
Hi, I feel your pain and frustration, and I understand where you are coming from, but you claim you have owned this trailer for about five years. You have been on this forum for about five years. You have made over eleven hundred posts. And now you want to put all the blame on a New Jersey shop. In your own picture, at the time of restoration, your trailer is sitting on the ground with your tires stuck all the way up inside of your wheel wells. The top of the rims are, or look to be, level with your wheel lip mouldings. I don't see any way you could not have seen or read about what to look for in bad axles. Sometimes, instead of trying to blame someone else, [as my Mom would say] "Try looking in a mirror."
Bob,

It's not that I want to put all the blame on the shop but, after spending that much money on this trailer, wouldn't you expect it to hold up longer than four years 2 months (I actually noticed the separation a couple months ago)? Am I really asking too much? As for the axles, I asked the shop on several occasions about putting in new axles. Here's the answer I received:

The owner told me that the axles were fine, due to the fact that they still showed down angle. He also told me that he didn't want to buy the new axles, because they came from one place and one place only, and he didn't want to deal with the person who owned the place where they came from. He told me that, if I really wanted them, I should consider different axles, but it would require extra work to make them fit....extra work=extra money. At one point, he even told me that we could put in a leaf sprung axle. Here's the pic I was sent to show that the axles were still okay.

To give you an idea of how goofy this got, the original air conditioning shroud was shot to hell and the shop tried to get me to buy a new A/C...there was nothing wrong with the original one; it still blows ice cold to this day. I told him that I wanted the shroud replaced. The owner had his daughter buy the shroud from Inland RV, because he refused to call and buy it himself...Andy, if you still have your records from 2005, you can confirm this.

I know there was a lot of work done to my trailer, and I'm not complaining about that, though I do think there were frivolous charges and, given that I lived in Maryland, I was only able to go up there twice a month to check on the progress.

At that price, my rig shouldn't be falling apart this damn soon. I understand appliances fail. My beef is the frame separating. The other things failing just add to the frustration. Let me ask you, would you have paid that much? The owner of the shop initially told me, by the way, that $10,000 would take care of what I wanted to do. Only after it was torn apart was I told that I would need to pay more and then more and then more...the guy had my trailer and my cash, what was I supposed to do, say no? Go into litigation, which would cost even more? The saying, "Stupidity should be painful and expensive" has applied here. F me once shame on you, F me twice shame on me. I don't want other people getting F'd. By the way, I lived in a townhouse at the time and was not able to work on the Airstream where it was kept, otherwise I probably would have stripped it out myself.

on edit: Knowing what I know now a few years later, those axles were shot in 2005.
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Old 01-30-2010, 10:21 AM   #50
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Originally Posted by StingrayL82 View Post
Bob,

It's not that I want to put all the blame on the shop but, after spending that much money on this trailer, wouldn't you expect it to hold up longer than four years 2 months (I actually noticed the separation a couple months ago)? Am I really asking too much? As for the axles, I asked the shop on several occasions about putting in new axles. Here's the answer I received:

The owner told me that the axles were fine, due to the fact that they still showed down angle. He also told me that he didn't want to buy the new axles, because they came from one place and one place only, and he didn't want to deal with the person who owned the place where they came from. He told me that, if I really wanted them, I should consider different axles, but it would require extra work to make them fit....extra work=extra money. At one point, he even told me that we could put in a leaf sprung axle. Here's the pic I was sent to show that the axles were still okay.

To give you an idea of how goofy this got, the original air conditioning shroud was shot to hell and the shop tried to get me to buy a new A/C...there was nothing wrong with the original one; it still blows ice cold to this day. I told him that I wanted the shroud replaced. The owner had his daughter buy the shroud from Inland RV, because he refused to call and buy it himself...Andy, if you still have your records from 2005, you can confirm this.

I know there was a lot of work done to my trailer, and I'm not complaining about that, though I do think there were frivolous charges and, given that I lived in Maryland, I was only able to go up there twice a month to check on the progress.

At that price, my rig shouldn't be falling apart this damn soon. I understand appliances fail. My beef is the frame separating. The other things failing just add to the frustration. Let me ask you, would you have paid that much? The owner of the shop initially told me, by the way, that $10,000 would take care of what I wanted to do. Only after it was torn apart was I told that I would need to pay more and then more and then more...the guy had my trailer and my cash, what was I supposed to do, say no? Go into litigation, which would cost even more? The saying, "Stupidity should be painful and expensive" has applied here. F me once shame on you, F me twice shame on me. I don't want other people getting F'd. By the way, I lived in a townhouse at the time and was not able to work on the Airstream where it was kept, otherwise I probably would have stripped it out myself.

on edit: Knowing what I know now a few years later, those axles were shot in 2005.
Frederic.

Our records go back to over 10 years ago.

Some dealers, Airstream and otherwise, still don't get it, thatwe sell to them as well, so that they can help you with OEM axles. Of course they receive a discount. That's how one business work with another.

I am not sure at this point, who owns South Jersey.

At the top of your invoice pages, there are some letters,
J B H R JH. What do those letters mean? One thought was that those letters were the intials of the mechanic.

Yes, from your photo, the axles have lived their life.

Rehab shops are all over the place, or so they say.

A rehab shop, does have a constant flow of that kind of work. A "wanna-be" rehab shop, is far removed from those with years of background. Any shop, as many do, claim "complete restoration". What they are really saying, as many of our customers tell us, is that they have knowledge and experience rehabing a persons finances.

One of the funny but sad recent cabinet work done by a southern California "wanna-be" was assembling the cabinets, with "dry wall screws". Ouch.

Frederic, as you well know, the battle is not over, until it's over. Back up a little, regroup, rethink, replan, restudy, and go forward, as any good commander would do, of which you are one.

We are glad to help you with any questions you may have.

Andy
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Old 01-30-2010, 01:03 PM   #51
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Frederic.

Our records go back to over 10 years ago.

Some dealers, Airstream and otherwise, still don't get it, thatwe sell to them as well, so that they can help you with OEM axles. Of course they receive a discount. That's how one business work with another.

I am not sure at this point, who owns South Jersey.

At the top of your invoice pages, there are some letters,
J B H R JH. What do those letters mean? One thought was that those letters were the intials of the mechanic.

Yes, from your photo, the axles have lived their life.

Rehab shops are all over the place, or so they say.

A rehab shop, does have a constant flow of that kind of work. A "wanna-be" rehab shop, is far removed from those with years of background. Any shop, as many do, claim "complete restoration". What they are really saying, as many of our customers tell us, is that they have knowledge and experience rehabing a persons finances.

One of the funny but sad recent cabinet work done by a southern California "wanna-be" was assembling the cabinets, with "dry wall screws". Ouch.

Frederic, as you well know, the battle is not over, until it's over. Back up a little, regroup, rethink, replan, restudy, and go forward, as any good commander would do, of which you are one.

We are glad to help you with any questions you may have.

Andy

The initials are of the people who worked on it. The same people still own SJRV.

There were things done that I didn't ask them to do and was told that it was necessary. Was it? Who knows?

I'm going to get out of the house today, to go see some cutting and reigning.
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Old 01-30-2010, 01:06 PM   #52
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On axles... here's my take. We encountered what I'll call "varying opinions" on our axles. What I knew is... they were over 40 years old when we bought the Overlander. And as I believe has observed, you can't always trust the angles to tell you the whole story. It's like the commercial, "You have a lot riding on your tires." Well, we have a lot riding on our trailer tires and axles. Vibration and shock are dire enemies of all mechanical devices including travel trailers. Every shake, shimmy, bump and jolt stresses things in the trailer. Anything you can do to make your Airstream ride more smoothly makes everything from the frame up (and down) last longer. I know axles aren't cheap but if you are putting money into a renovation or restoration... why not protect the investment with new running gear.
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Old 01-30-2010, 01:49 PM   #53
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After reading your invoices I noticed that back then there was a note that the outriggers need to be replaced in the future, 11/07/05, were they done?
I can see your photo of the axle and see why you questioned their replacement but 4 years ago that would have been more money as well. I always suggest when not comfortable with a shops decission go somewhere else for a second opinion, Colonial RV could have looked at them for you.

In the retail auto world everyone knows it cost 4 times or more of a car's cost to build it part by part so a $20,000 car would be $80K to $90K.
Your Airstream new is about $100,000 now I think, and that would equate to $400K to rebuild from the ground up, so $37K is only 10% of building one from the ground up.

I remember putting an engine in a customers $95,000 Benz 500SEL and the cost to the factory was $50,000. The owner turned white and thought uh oh if I had to pay for that I'd croak, he sold the car soon after for a new 6 cyl 300E.

Anyone who rebuilds something on a retail level assumes that they will never get out of it the money put in but they want and love the thing they are rebuilding and don't care.

I'd fix the axles and tackle the rear seperation and go on enjoying the Airstream for many years to come. Something else will eventually break, stove, furnace, A/C finally, regardless. My new 40 foot deisel MH had 11 problems in 3 years, machines break even $200,000 ones.

So now I'm enjoying rebuilding a 34 year old 22 ft Airstream and will pump more than it's really worth into it until I tire of it or find my next toy.
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Old 01-30-2010, 06:34 PM   #54
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However if someone installs a bad component manufactured by an outside supplier... is it the supplier's or the installer's fault?
Both can be liable. The installer installed a bad part and is responsible for that; he has to collect from the manufacturer.

Because the restoration was more than 4 years ago, it would be extremely difficult to show at least some of the things were the fault of the restorer. Some might be, but the statute of limitations may have run out, but not necessarily. If you want to, you can talk to a NJ lawyer—many give a free half hour consultation and may work on a contingency basis. Too many factors here to say more. Vague legal advice done.

I don't think people get angry at inanimate objects though they think they do. I have cursed out cars, trucks, remodeling jobs, etc., but the person I was really mad at was the people who built these things or were fixing them, and a lot of times I was really angry at me. I did a sloppy repair job, I picked the wrong tool, I bought the wrong car. We are all pretty good at blaming ourselves sometimes and getting angry, but we direct it at someone or something else. I would guess you are angry at yourself for choosing this restorer and letting it go on and on. Give yourself a break—it's impossible to do everything perfectly or to know in advance you are selecting the wrong business to deal with. Once you get over the anger, you can make good decisions and keep or not keep the Airstream. Therapy session over.

I hope this works out for you.

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Old 01-30-2010, 06:37 PM   #55
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Went to the Cutting Horse show today and enjoyed my afternoon watching what relaxes me most. Then I went to H&R Block and and found out I'm getting a nice return this year. It made up my mind as to what I should do.

I stopped by the local RV dealership and will put the Sovereign on consignment, starting Monday.

2010 is about paying my bills. I'm done spending money.

Joe, thanks for helping me make my decision.
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Old 01-30-2010, 08:01 PM   #56
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Fred...

If your head feels good.....do it.

After all thats where the piece of mind lives.

Good Luck keep us posted.
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:40 PM   #57
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Mistakes? I have made them.

Man, have I made them.

............................................

When you get into a bad deal, don't let it drag you down. Get out of it. Get out of it the best way you can, break even or make a profit if possible, take a loss if you have to but GET OUT.

The way you feel right now, trading for the Silver Streak trailer is probably the best thing you can do.

There are only 2 things. I hope you are not kidding the buyer about the condition of your trailer. And I hope you have inspected the other trailer (or had it inspected) and are not setting yourself up for another jack pot.

I have been where you are on car deals, house deals etc. I found out, for me anyway, the best thing to do is make a clean break and start over.
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