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Old 12-14-2017, 12:19 PM   #1
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Question Please Help

I am thinking about buying a 1972 Airstream Sovereign , it is gutted except for the rear bathroom. I haven't seen much on a remodel of one with a rear bathroom. Is there a drawback to that? Is this model suggested to buy or no?
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Old 12-14-2017, 12:34 PM   #2
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Pictures and pricing would help with any recommendations as to purchasing
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Old 12-14-2017, 01:26 PM   #3
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Welcome to the Forums.

Your buying decision is going to be based on a whole lot more than where the bathroom is located--the condition of the whole trailer, specifically.

Some people prefer to have a mid-body bathroom, if only because it means you can have a dedicated bedroom in the rear of the trailer, and people sleeping in the front of the trailer, and they don't have to climb over one another in the middle of the night to get to the bathroom. That being said, there are many-many-many trailers out there with the bathroom in the rear.

There is an urban myth out there that long trailers with bathrooms in the rear are more likely to suffer subfloor rot and rear-end separation. A leaky bath can cause floor rot wherever it is located, and the rear ends of 70's vintage trailers will rot if there is a bathroom there or not. This is caused by the bumper trunk essentially funneling water directly into the endgrain of the rear most sheet of plywood.

Make sure you get good and educated as to what to look for when inspecting a vintage trailer. There is a checklist available on the Portal page, and a utility for finding volunteer inspectors. Usually a "mostly gutted" trailer means that someone else started the rennovation project, and when they realized what decrepit shape the trailer is in and how much work is going to be required, they throw in the towel. Don't buy someone else's aborted project unless you know what you are signing up for.

good luck!
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Old 12-14-2017, 01:51 PM   #4
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If you can do plumbing (basic PEX), understand both 12vdc and 120 VAC circuitry (including converters/inverters), are a pretty fair all around handyman (appliance repair, wheels/brakes/bearings) and a fair hand at carpentry (for the gutted interior), this could be a "deal of a lifetime".

If you would actually like to go camping in the next few years, run, don't walk, away regardless of price.
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Old 12-14-2017, 02:35 PM   #5
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Run! Unless you are completely confident that you have the time, tools, money and expertise to completely restore all systems you are in over your head. As stated previously, someone else probably attempted to restore it and gave up. Restoration takes yeas and $50,000 is a lower estimate of what you will be spending.
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Old 12-14-2017, 03:16 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by doonanner View Post
I am thinking about buying a 1972 Airstream Sovereign , it is gutted except for the rear bathroom. I haven't seen much on a remodel of one with a rear bathroom. Is there a drawback to that? Is this model suggested to buy or no?
Welcome to the forum!

For meaningful feedback, it would be advisable to post quite a few interior and exterior photos.

Also, what are your construction skills, and do you intend to do the work yourself or pay others for the renovation?

Lastly, do you have a covered and heated (air-conditioned) work space or shop?

The more details you can provide, the more helpful will be the feedback IMO.

Peter

PS -- You might want to check the various restoration forums and threads, in order to get the lay of the land, and the nearly endless road which lies before you:

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f3/
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Old 12-14-2017, 04:50 PM   #7
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Thank you
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Old 12-14-2017, 05:12 PM   #8
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Old 12-14-2017, 05:18 PM   #9
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I included some pics , have electrical, plumbing and some carpentry experience. I just dont want to make a purchase without having an idea on what I am getting into. This is a dream of mine as I am sure that I'm not alone in that. I just don't want to turn it into a nightmare. Thanks for all the help!
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Old 12-14-2017, 05:28 PM   #10
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My take...
#1 Establish the condition of the frame and sub floor plywood especially in the bath and under.
That will determine if your project is from the floor up or not.
The rear end from the bumper forward seams to be the trouble spot.
The shell looks good and thats a big plus.
This will cost allot of money and time no mater what so you need to want it bad!
Sounds like you have the skills part.
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Old 12-14-2017, 05:55 PM   #11
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Does it have a gray water tank? If not, that would be an issue to consider for me.
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Old 12-14-2017, 08:20 PM   #12
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Does it have a gray water tank? If not, that would be an issue to consider for me.
A 1972 would only have a tank if someone had added it. From the looks of this one I would say this will be her first redo.

To the original poster, polish up on your carpentry skills or find a friend with skills and go for it. If it is a dream of yours see it through and enjoy the hell out of it. A renovation can be done on a shoe string budget but the end result may not be what you are looking for. Do your homework on what you want to do and set a realistic budget. By the time you are done you probably could have purchased one that was in camp ready condition. That being stated you will have more of a connection to a trailer that you renovate and set up for your personal taste and uses.
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