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Old 01-06-2007, 10:04 PM   #1
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1977 31' Sovereign
Water Valley , Mississippi
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'77 Sovereign renovation

Does anyone have any recommendations on a reputable person to do a complete renovation on an airstream?
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Old 01-06-2007, 10:12 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thenewguy
Does anyone have any recommendations on a reputable person to do a complete renovation on an airstream?
GSM Vehicles in Plattsburg, NY.

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Old 01-07-2007, 03:37 AM   #3
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How much money are you willing to spend?

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Old 01-07-2007, 04:10 AM   #4
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I have a similar unit. Before you start spending signifigant money on the trailer it might be worthwhile having the local Airstream dealer really give it signifigant look over to uncover any hidden problems that might make for large expenditures to correct. It is better to know where you are going before you embark on a very long and expensive trip.
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Old 01-07-2007, 08:36 AM   #5
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do you have an idea of what it needs? It may look or seem worse ( or maybe better) than it really is.
You will find that there are things that can be done with guidance of the folks here, others that require an RV trained person, and maybe some that are general repairs that can be done by someone knowledgeable in that area, like the cabinetry, flooring, specific systems like heat and a/c etc.
In other words if you make a list of what you think the problems are, try out all the systems and so on, you will be better prepared to know what help to seek.
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Old 01-07-2007, 01:22 PM   #6
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1977 31' Sovereign
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This trailer was use as a hunting cabin for the last 4 to 5 years when I purchased it. I sent this trailer back to the airstream factory for a general inspection and to fix some roadworthiness issues. I plan to spend in the area of 30 to 40000 total on renovation. Nothing fancy but safe and livable and half the cost of a new trailer the same size. This trailer is to be a home away from home for business and used for recreation for my family. I am extremely busy and do not have the time to renovate myself. Thanks for any advice.
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Old 01-07-2007, 03:46 PM   #7
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1973 31' Sovereign
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$30K-$40K is a lot of $$. What kind of improvements were you considering?

Is it center or rear bath? Any idea of the condition of the frame? Floor rot? (rear separation)

Assuming replacement of all appliances, gaskets, light covers, axles, and running gear (tires/wheels) and you're still under $7000 in materials.
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Old 01-07-2007, 04:44 PM   #8
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That'll buy you alot of toys
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Old 01-07-2007, 09:37 PM   #9
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$$$$$$

Funny, for that much you might pick up 5-10 Airstreams.
Of course you might go to the Blue book, Yellow book or even the forums to find a similar trailer's value in good condition.
Movie stars can spend $200-500,000 for a custom job.
I like mine for the simplicity, economy and design beauty.
For the amount mentioned a 2 year old trailer might be better.
Please keep us posted.
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Old 01-08-2007, 11:25 AM   #10
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1977 31' Sovereign
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you guys are right. I guess this one goes back to being a mobile hunting cabin.
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Old 01-08-2007, 11:56 AM   #11
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does this need all that money spent on renovation? I mean would it not be servicable with some basic repairs and updating? It would be a shame to miss out on really using it.
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Old 01-08-2007, 05:57 PM   #12
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1977 31' Sovereign
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It is servicable now. I just had some other ideas for it as far as comfort goes. I love the trailer and it will suit my needs fine as a mobile base camp for work and outdoor recreation in its present state. I'm trying to entice my family to spend more time outdoors but I think they would like to have some of the luxuries of home come sundown. The more that I think about it I may be better off looking for a newer used camper to suit that purpose. I'm still considering the renovation on the old trailer-just without going overboard and I may wait until I can provide the labor.
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Old 01-08-2007, 07:22 PM   #13
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Enlist the family

Get everyone involved in the camping.
It might just be you and the Boss.
Ours is primarily for hunting and fishing.
The children are going fast.
We cannot keep them forever.
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Old 01-08-2007, 11:10 PM   #14
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Having just done mine, 300 hours and $4500 in materials, so it's not going to cost you more than $20K to have it done right.
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Old 02-09-2007, 05:45 AM   #15
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1977 31' Sovereign
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Hey guys,

I have taken up residence in my trailer at a temporary job site. Been living in it and have been through some pretty harsh weather-deep south thunderstorms. Noticed a few minor leaks around a window gasket which I plan to replace. Also I suspect that I have a leak at a seam toward the rear of the trailer. I was told that a "seal test" had been done on the trailer and that it checked out good. It as been sealed in the past but a looong time ago. I suspect that I need to strip the old sealant at the seams and redo.
Also, about 1 week ago I noticed about a 2 foot diameter wet spot in the carpet between the shower and the toilet. The toilet is brand new and no moisture around the base of the toilet. I suspect that the shower or the drain plumbing from the shower is leaking. All of the incoming water lines were redone at the factory so I will assume they are functional at this point. Any recs on a way to eval and fix this without tearing out the bathroom would be appreciated.
By the way, this thing is awesome. I underestimated the liveability of these trailers. I love this old trailer and can't see myself trading it in for a new one. This baby has found a permanent home.

thanks for the help and recs
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Old 02-09-2007, 08:25 AM   #16
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So glad you decided to keep her. Sometimes I get the feeling that the vintage trailers have learned how to whisper in your ear. They speak to your heart. Taunt you with visions of times past. They make you want to be a part of their history. So we adopt them, name them and bring them into our families. Our histories become entagled with theirs, and we are better for it.
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Old 02-09-2007, 12:17 PM   #17
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water can travel as you know, so leaks are not always easily traced. You might check outside also, as leaks around the beltline trim getting under the floor are common. Hose that area outside and see if the leak grows, I would pull up the carpet to se what the flooring looks like under it.
You could run the shower and watch for the leak to progress also.
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Old 02-09-2007, 12:44 PM   #18
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Good question

Quote:
Originally Posted by thenewguy
I plan to spend in the area of 30 to 40000 total on renovation.
Quote:
Originally Posted by PizzaChop
$30K-$40K is a lot of $$
Quote:
Originally Posted by balrgn
That'll buy you alot of toys
Quote:
Originally Posted by fastrob
Funny, for that much you might pick up 5-10 Airstreams
Quote:
Originally Posted by thenewguy
you guys are right. I guess this one goes back to being a mobile hunting cabin.
Don't give up so easy. If you can get a total restore from the ground up, only reusing the skin, I say its a great deal compared to buying new. I think you are a wise man asking that kind of question. The key word here is "IF", because I am not sure what it would cost to replace everything except the skin. Anyone know?

Dale
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Old 12-14-2009, 03:28 PM   #19
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yoo-hoo, still here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by thenewguy View Post
Also, about 1 week ago I noticed about a 2 foot diameter wet spot in the carpet between the shower and the toilet. The toilet is brand new and no moisture around the base of the toilet.
Wonder if he ever found this leak.

It soulnds suspiciously like the one I had in mine (assuming rear bath) and it turned out to be the water heater.

Result: new water heater = no leak
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