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Old 09-07-2014, 08:13 PM   #1
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Bent Sovereign 25'

I've been offered an 85 Sovereign that the former owner allowed to get intimate with a telephone pole. It resulted in an extensive scrape down the right side--no structural damage. The interior is what we've been looking for and it has the center bath. All systems work, just needs a good cleaning and the front lounge put back together. The price is $5,000.

Is this a good deal considering the amount of repair necessary? Note (and purists cover your eyes!): We are figuring on flattening out the skin and putting it back together with the wrinkles/scrapes for all the world to see. (obviously a coupe sections will have to be replaced.)

Yes, it will look like heck. But it'll get us on the road and we can replace sections of alum. as we come up with the cash.

We haven't done the deal--mostly because it's a bit longer than we were looking for -- we're committed boondockers and national forestt campground campers--we had set our limit at 20ish feet.
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Old 09-07-2014, 08:20 PM   #2
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run.................free would be too expensive
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Old 09-07-2014, 08:32 PM   #3
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Must be at least $15,000 in repairs there. Buy a good one with out damage for less.
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Old 09-07-2014, 08:35 PM   #4
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Did they use OSB for the floors in '85? All that, and a nightmare too!
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Old 09-07-2014, 08:41 PM   #5
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This is more than a scrape. You are looking at major damage and a very extensive repair effort. Both ends and the curbside aluminum are heavily damaged. The area just fore of the rear shell seam is bashed in pretty good and there appears to be a skin buckle just ahead of the street side wheel well. Not to mention creases in the street side end segments.

The cost to repair this would likely be 3 to 4 times his asking price and simply not worth it. This is a salvage trailer IMO.


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Old 09-07-2014, 08:51 PM   #6
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"Bent" is an understatement. Too much is too wrong. Walk away. You can do far better.
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Old 09-07-2014, 11:04 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin245 View Post
This is more than a scrape. You are looking at major damage and a very extensive repair effort. Both ends and the curbside aluminum are heavily damaged. The area just fore of the rear shell seam is bashed in pretty good and there appears to be a skin buckle just ahead of the street side wheel well. Not to mention creases in the street side end segments.

The cost to repair this would likely be 3 to 4 times his asking price and simply not worth it. This is a salvage trailer IMO.


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Kevin245 noted the most significant thing, that big bend in the aluminum next to the wheel well on the GOOD side of the Airstream. Bent or broken frame! Damage to the floor has to be extensive too. I wouldn't pay $500 for it. You might be able to salvage some of the interior & the windows and door... but you'd never make this unit safe to use on a public road.

PLEASE RUN AWAY from this one.

When you find one you like it's easy to overlook flaws, but believe me this isn't worth a pitcher of warm spit! They did make others like this, and if you keep looking you'll find others in much better shape. This one will cost you more labor to scrap it than it's worth.

Paula
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Old 09-07-2014, 11:35 PM   #8
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Thanks! It's in the rear view.
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Old 09-08-2014, 06:56 AM   #9
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I an trying to reconstruct this accident in my mind..... I am not seeing a pole... Unless it was encountered at 50mph...
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Old 09-08-2014, 08:33 AM   #10
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I thought so too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by J. Morgan View Post
I an trying to reconstruct this accident in my mind..... I am not seeing a pole... Unless it was encountered at 50mph...
What's the difference between a fairy tale and a sea story?
  • a fairy tale starts "Once upon a Time"
  • a sea story starts "Now this is a no-sh***er"
A Seller's description of the condition of his/her unit is all too often the same as either
  • a fairy tale or
  • a sea story
I do think a phone pole could have been involved, and even one at low speed, but It looks more like he backed into it near the edge, and kept backing until the awning flew past his tow vehicle. (notice that was missing?) There's enough "persistence" to suggest a substantial indulgence in adult beverages or herbs only lately legalized in Colorado.

See, the awning is gone, even the curbside front window is covered in prodex, the lower curbside panel is missing. I'm even guessing that the door may actually be a replacement rather than original equipment. There aren't full-on pictures of the front or rear endcaps though we can see some creases in both, so they may tell a more complete story of whatever happened.

I'm just so very glad this newcomer found the forums AND was influenced by our Boundless Sagacity (BS?). I feel like we saved someone from totally ****ing away $5000! Even Colaws would just pull the intact windows and door and send the rest to the recycler.

This one is not destined to be one of the 60% still on the road - EVER!

Paula
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Old 09-08-2014, 08:43 AM   #11
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I've only got the seller's version which he got from the P.O. Added more fotos for your edification.

I agree it's a pretty mysterious accident--looks more like sideswiping a cement mixer or a garbage truck going the opposite direction.

We've got a 65 Tradewind $9K (the seller is living in it fulltime in an RVpark so we can at least see the systems working) and a 64 Kenskill 23' $6K to look at this week. The hunt continues. We're looking in the 4-figure price range with the goal of going fulltime and working from the road.

I can't say how much we appreciate the frank feedback from y'all. Thanks.
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Old 09-08-2014, 08:51 AM   #12
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Glen - good luck on your search. Those two pictures just kept pulling me back in. Like a gory highway wreck that you just can't avoid looking at. I JUST noticed the WHEELS and tires on the damaged side. They are replacements - and not even the same size! See the other side. The damage still looks like it started in the back, but whatever happened - losing BOTH tires and the wheels? That is just wierd! Maybe he ran over a grizzly bear!

Have you checked our "Classifieds" yet? Some really nice units there.

Good luck on finding a dream unit. Paula
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Old 09-08-2014, 08:52 AM   #13
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I get the classifieds via email. Because our posts are crossing, note I added more gory accident fotos.
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Old 09-08-2014, 08:57 AM   #14
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I really like Kenskills.
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Old 09-08-2014, 04:48 PM   #15
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Just got a call from the seller (who restores classic trailers). His his offer:
--The bent Sovereign for $4,500.
-- $5,000 to $6,500 for his team to restore the exterior to pre-collision condition. He says that it probably needs a new axle, which he includes in the higher figure. (The figure is conditional until his mechanics and fabricators go over it carefully, but he feels pretty solid about it.) I've seen their work and they do excellent work.

That would make the total $11,500 for the Sovereign.

But my wife and I have moved on for the moment.

We know of a nice '70s Tradewind 23' (hasn't been in an accident for $12,000) and a functioning '60s model for $9,000. They both need interior TLC and polished (if you're into that.)

Besides, according to the specs I've seen, the 85 Sovereign 25' is a HEAVY beast and a little long for our purposes.

Thanks again for the honest feedback--it's invaluable. If you don't mind, I'll post again when we are near striking a deal.
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Old 09-08-2014, 05:48 PM   #16
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I doubt you can correctly fix this one for 5 to 6 k. You would have to pull the shell and first of all check and more than likely replace the floor.. Then you got all the exterior skin... I see at least 15 k in just materials to do it right though...

Keep on hunting, you will find a better one..

Btw what area are you looking at?


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Old 09-08-2014, 08:07 PM   #17
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there's a term used here "polished turd" - which is basically a cosmetic coverup instead of a structurally sound repair. Any reputable restorer probably would immediately say that this is a unit that is good for parts only. I have seen many well-intentioned people do horrible things attempting to fix their Airstreams. That's most often ignorance, but to be in business and even propose that this unit is worth fixing isn't a straight shooter. There are parts that can be salvaged, period. Having the 'nads to offer that piece of garbage for more than $500 is just offensive.

I'm going to lead you into temptation now. My buddy Smokeless Joe has decided to retire from Airstreaming. He has an Argosy for sale on the classifieds here. Look at it, then go to the thread linked below and scan through what a true masterpiece upgrade can be. No one really HAS to go as far as Sergei did to have a nice usable camper (His is a marvel of technology and art)... but the first thing that he did right was START with a unit worth repairing! I have a nearly new Eddie Bauer and I'm still tempted by his Argosy, Mini Cooper, Sprinter truck combo. Drool over something worthwhile - it'll cure you of ever looking at something that doesn't have "GOOD BONES".

Airstream Forums - Search Results

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Old 09-08-2014, 08:57 PM   #18
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Sad but that is just a trailer...hangar queen...part donor....now.

Rip off your "rear view" on that one.
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Old 09-08-2014, 10:14 PM   #19
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Submariner,
We're looking in the mountain west. Nev., colo., wyo., idaho., ut. Arizona, etc.
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