RV News RVBusiness 2021 Top 10 RVs of the Year, plus 56 additional debuts and must-see units → ×
 


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 11-21-2012, 09:56 AM   #61
2 Rivet Member
 
GreyMattr's Avatar
 
1978 31' Sovereign
Parkersburg , West Virginia
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 53
Images: 5
Update: I have rear sag on the curbside only that needs fixed. The sag is caused by damage on the bottom of the frame between the axles. Here are some photos:


Click image for larger version

Name:	ForumRunner_20121121_105315.png
Views:	181
Size:	398.0 KB
ID:	173082



Click image for larger version

Name:	ForumRunner_20121121_105326.png
Views:	181
Size:	609.2 KB
ID:	173083



Click image for larger version

Name:	ForumRunner_20121121_105340.png
Views:	180
Size:	476.9 KB
ID:	173084

It's causing about 1/2 inch drop on the curbside tail end:


Click image for larger version

Name:	ForumRunner_20121121_105445.png
Views:	168
Size:	590.7 KB
ID:	173085

My plan is to remove the wheels and jack the frame to level. Then hammer out the bend and weld/bolt a plate to the outside of the frame rail. Any objections or suggestions?
GreyMattr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2013, 11:20 PM   #62
3 Rivet Member
 
Protohyp's Avatar
 
1977 31' Excella 500
Los angeles , California
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 201
Send a message via AIM to Protohyp
you might want to check out of doors mart and most airstream dealers as they have a reinforcement plate that helps with bent and damaged frames. It goes right over that area that you need to repair just not sure it fits anything prior to 1982 but if you're able to fabricate something similar it might help

Main Frame Repair Plate 451120-01 [451120-01] - $399.95 : Out-of-Doors Mart!, More Airstream Parts on-line than anyone!
Protohyp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2013, 11:51 PM   #63
2 Rivet Member
 
1973 Argosy 24
Houston , Texas
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 67
Heck, just my 2 cents... you have the frame apart, I'd get some steel and have it welded in there after you straightened the frame out. If you used POR15 beware of the fumes. I understand they are toxic when welding.

Anyhow, I wouldn't pay $400 for a pair of steel plates.
Hotpuppy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-04-2013, 09:19 AM   #64
2 Rivet Member
 
GreyMattr's Avatar
 
1978 31' Sovereign
Parkersburg , West Virginia
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 53
Images: 5
Its been awhile since my last post, things have been crazy. Progress has completely stopped up until this week due to weather conditions. My job is relocating me to Columbus, OH in May so this project has been kicked into overdrive. (At least getting the shell back on the frame so i can move the camper)

The frame has been welded and painted. Probably not as well as I would have liked, but desperate times call for desperate measures.

I'm buying the subfloor this week as well as the epoxy (West Marine?). Any suggestions on type of plywood/epoxy to use are welcomed and appreciated.

Also, any recommendations on where to by the aluminum channeling would be awesome. I've looked at Out-of-Doors Mart and they have a possible 6 week delivery time which if i can circumvent, would be nice.

I look forward to posting more frequently and I will include photos detailing the steps over the next few weeks.
GreyMattr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-2013, 08:41 PM   #65
Tool Hoarder
 
Currently Looking...
West , California
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 907
Images: 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by GreyMattr View Post
Its been awhile since my last post, things have been crazy. Progress has completely stopped up until this week due to weather conditions. My job is relocating me to Columbus, OH in May so this project has been kicked into overdrive. (At least getting the shell back on the frame so i can move the camper)

The frame has been welded and painted. Probably not as well as I would have liked, but desperate times call for desperate measures.

I'm buying the subfloor this week as well as the epoxy (West Marine?). Any suggestions on type of plywood/epoxy to use are welcomed and appreciated.

Also, any recommendations on where to by the aluminum channeling would be awesome. I've looked at Out-of-Doors Mart and they have a possible 6 week delivery time which if i can circumvent, would be nice.

I look forward to posting more frequently and I will include photos detailing the steps over the next few weeks.
I used 3/4 " marine grade plywood. I bought a metal brake and bent up my own channel
marzboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-31-2013, 06:33 PM   #66
2 Rivet Member
 
GreyMattr's Avatar
 
1978 31' Sovereign
Parkersburg , West Virginia
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 53
Images: 5
I really should be posting more frequently between steps. The may move date was pushed back due to issues at the new house. Tomorrow is the big day to put the shell on. In fact, I'll basically be going from a frame to a shell on situation from morning til night tomorrow. I've been trying to get as far along as I can but there are lots of areas where an extra set of hands really makes a difference. Here's the update from last post; Read on if you want to see what happens when you are under a ridiculously short deadline:

1. Purchased 1/2" ply for the floor (the size that was previously used) and cut all the floor pieces using the old floor as a template.
2. Drove to Airstream and bought channeling and two end bows.
3. Got Home and realized the new channeling was too big for the 1/2" ply and had to move up to 5/8". (so i now have an entire floor in 1/2" hanging out in my basement )
4. Also, under a lack of judgement, the front and rear floor pieces that have the bow were cut under the assumption that the bow channel from airstream would fit. They do not.
5. Ordered West Marine epoxy and coated the flooring. Worst part of the entire process for me.
6. Cut the new channeling to size using old channeling as template.

I believe I have all of the necessary components to get the shell back on. Currently, they are all in pieces. I have two good friends that are coming over tomorrow and they are both incredibly skilled fabricators. Here's whats on the agenda:

1. Attach the flooring to the frame.
2. Attach the channeling to the floor/frame.
3. Lift shell from the ground using gantry cranes.
4. Place frame under the shell and jack until completely level.
5. Slowly lower shell onto channeling/floor/frame and pray that my measurements are correct and we can 'massage' the shell into the channeling.

Seeking Advice: I've seen countless posts and even youtube videos of shells coming off. I've yet to find a really good video/post about a shell going on (where gantry cranes were used; and by good i mean details about how you lined up the frame, etc.). I'm assuming its because most people give up after the shell comes off?

If anyone has any pics or good strategies to share about lining up the shell and frame when overhead lifting with cranes, please share. (i.e. what method did you use to counterbalance the weight of the awning so that the shell raises and lowers level?)

I am vowing here and now to get crazy with the photo documentation of the shell on process to maybe help shed some light.

One last question: If anyone has used the bow channeling that you get from Airstream, what did you do to get it to fit? I've read that you need to cut a section from the middle and weld it together. I do not have the equipment to weld aluminum so I'm considering just making the bow channeling a two piece situation on the front and back and sealing up the seam. thoughts?
GreyMattr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-31-2013, 07:48 PM   #67
Tool Hoarder
 
Currently Looking...
West , California
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 907
Images: 3
Dude take lots of pictures!! Also make sure that the length of the sub floor is correct or you will run into problems. Mine was a tad too long and damaged the rear corners so bad I had to replace both outer skins.
marzboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 10:20 AM   #68
2 Rivet Member
 
GreyMattr's Avatar
 
1978 31' Sovereign
Parkersburg , West Virginia
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 53
Images: 5
At Last!

The Shell is back on the frame/floor!!

Here's what I started with this morning:




Here is what we ended up with:



NOTE: Damage on the quarter panel is from the PO.

Details in the following post.
GreyMattr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 10:31 AM   #69
Rivet Master
 
GAStreamin's Avatar
 
2012 25' Flying Cloud
Moultrie , Georgia
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 521
I just read the thread and I am in the middle of a "full monte" of a 31' Sovereign 1978 as well. I did shell on ,but shell off is a great way to go. I agree with you. I could not find very much on how to put it back on, so it led me to not take shell of. I had bought the wood for the gantrys and everything. I am very interested to see how you get it back on. I am also interested about the channeling you got from Airstream. Excellent work! I will enjoy keeping up with your progress.
GAStreamin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 10:37 AM   #70
2 Rivet Member
 
GreyMattr's Avatar
 
1978 31' Sovereign
Parkersburg , West Virginia
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 53
Images: 5
Flooring

We began with the attaching the floor to the frame. The most difficult albeit important part of this task was adjusting the Airstream bow channeling to fit the front bow portion of the floor. You'll see in the photo below that we had to do significant cutting on the channeling to get it to fit, and it still was a little wonkier than I would have liked. Deadlines be damned.





We chose to attach almost all of the flooring using elevator bolts towards the center of the frame. This allowed us to center the floor placement so we could measure and attach the channel later.







We later attached the channeling using 1/4-20 x 1 1/2" bolts from Airstream. In the pictures below, you'll notice the wheel well channeling. If you have that and it is even remotely salvagable, do so. Airstream does not have a part number for that. If you need one, there's a good chance you'll be fabricating it yourself.







We did not attach the rear piece of flooring until the frame was under the shell. We took this approach to allow us to really tailor the length to the shell. I believe this is the one misstep we may have made. I will detail it in the next post.
GreyMattr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 10:49 AM   #71
Rivet Master
 
GAStreamin's Avatar
 
2012 25' Flying Cloud
Moultrie , Georgia
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 521
Did you make your channeling or did you get it from Airstream?
GAStreamin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 11:24 AM   #72
2 Rivet Member
 
GreyMattr's Avatar
 
1978 31' Sovereign
Parkersburg , West Virginia
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 53
Images: 5
Quote:
Did you make your channeling or did you get it from Airstream?
I bought it at the Jackson Center Airstream Plant. I live in Ohio so it's only about an hour or so drive.

A lot of people fabricate their own channeling, but I chose to purchase new from Airstream due to a hurried timeline and lack of a brake to bend the metal. I bought two pieces of bow channeling and roughtly 32 ft of straight floor channeling.

Things to consider if using channeling from Airstream:
On the '78 Sovereign, the original bow channel has NO lower lip on the bottom of the channel. Its basically just a U-channel bolted to the top of the floor. The new channel from Airstream has a lip so that will make it a bit of a different situation when adding/removing/changing bow channeling. Also, you will almost assuredly need to adjust the "bow" of the bow channeling.

Also, the original floor width on my camper was closer to 1/2" but the channeling from Airstream is most decidedly 5/8". I had to re-buy 5/8 flooring because the 1/2 just had too much play when fitting the channeling to the board.
GreyMattr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 11:40 AM   #73
Rivet Master
 
GAStreamin's Avatar
 
2012 25' Flying Cloud
Moultrie , Georgia
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 521
Quote:
Originally Posted by GreyMattr View Post

I bought it at the Jackson Center Airstream Plant. I live in Ohio so it's only about an hour or so drive.

A lot of people fabricate their own channeling, but I chose to purchase new from Airstream due to a hurried timeline and lack of a brake to bend the metal. I bought two pieces of bow channeling and roughtly 32 ft of straight floor channeling.

Things to consider if using channeling from Airstream:
On the '78 Sovereign, the original bow channel has NO lower lip on the bottom of the channel. Its basically just a U-channel bolted to the top of the floor. The new channel from Airstream has a lip so that will make it a bit of a different situation when adding/removing/changing bow channeling. Also, you will almost assuredly need to adjust the "bow" of the bow channeling.

Also, the original floor width on my camper was closer to 1/2" but the channeling from Airstream is most decidedly 5/8". I had to re-buy 5/8 flooring because the 1/2 just had too much play when fitting the channeling to the board.
That is definitely something to consider. I bought 1/2" marine plywood, because like you said that is what it came with. I can exchange it, but the only problem is I didn't do a shell off, however I have a good bit of channeling that needs replacing. I just wonder if I can fit 5/8" in with shell on. I think that might be difficult. It just would be nice for once to order something and just put it down and not have to make it.
GAStreamin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 11:52 AM   #74
2 Rivet Member
 
GreyMattr's Avatar
 
1978 31' Sovereign
Parkersburg , West Virginia
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 53
Images: 5
Shell attachment

Here are some photos of the crew sliding the frame under the shell. This part of the process was actually pretty simple. The most key part was counterbalancing the weight of the awning and door so that the shell lifts evenly from side to side. I used roughly 150 lbs of sand which was still not enough. Also, make sure its not windy; there were a couple times when we had gusts of wind so bad it took all of us to settle down the rocking.










Here is a close up of the rear of the camper. We cut the rear board to fit and slid it into place. You'll notice the rear of the frame is not original. We had to cut the rear 6 ft of the frame and fabricate as best we could. I plan on altering it to meet specs now the the shell is on.




Here is my friend John helping with the attachment in the rear.






Here is a shot of the front from inside:




Since we had to replace the bow channeling, it took some maneuvering to get the corners to fit properly. The floor was cut using the old floor as a template and since the new channeling didn't fit properly from the factory, we could only get it as precise as we could. During the deconstruction, it became very obvious that our camper was "handmade" by the less than precise rivet placement/floor cuts and various other signs of a handmade camper.

The truck in the last picture looks as if its uneven because this is in my yard and the truck is parked on a bit of an incline.
GreyMattr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 12:03 PM   #75
Tool Hoarder
 
Currently Looking...
West , California
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 907
Images: 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by GreyMattr View Post
Here are some photos of the crew sliding the frame under the shell. This part of the process was actually pretty simple. The most key part was counterbalancing the weight of the awning and door so that the shell lifts evenly from side to side. I used roughly 150 lbs of sand which was still not enough. Also, make sure its not windy; there were a couple times when we had gusts of wind so bad it took all of us to settle down the rocking.









Here is a close up of the rear of the camper. We cut the rear board to fit and slid it into place. You'll notice the rear of the frame is not original. We had to cut the rear 6 ft of the frame and fabricate as best we could. I plan on altering it to meet specs now the the shell is on.



Here is my friend John helping with the attachment in the rear.





Here is a shot of the front from inside:



Since we had to replace the bow channeling, it took some maneuvering to get the corners to fit properly. The floor was cut using the old floor as a template and since the new channeling didn't fit properly from the factory, we could only get it as precise as we could. During the deconstruction, it became very obvious that our camper was "handmade" by the less than precise rivet placement/floor cuts and various other signs of a handmade camper.

The truck in the last picture looks as if its uneven because this is in my yard and the truck is parked on a bit of an incline.
Be careful the positioning off the shell can affect the way the windows and door seal
marzboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 12:05 PM   #76
2 Rivet Member
 
GreyMattr's Avatar
 
1978 31' Sovereign
Parkersburg , West Virginia
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 53
Images: 5
Heres the bad side

Here is a picture of the streetside rear corner. There is too much space between the outer skin and the channeling. This will need to be fixed before I buck rivet the shell in place.



So, since we measured the rear bow channel to the rear skin of the camper and it actually lined up pretty much perfect, we ended up shaping the rear floor segment to fit the rear bow channel (which is the opposite of what we did in the front floor segment).

Initially, i thought we cut the rear floor segment too short which would create the extra space between the skin and channeling...but the rear curbside corner is flush. This makes me believe that the shell is somehow twisted a bit on the frame but I'm not sure how that would have happened unless its shape has changed a little from sitting off the frame for so long.

If anyone has any suggestions about how to fix this problem please let me know asap. I need to get this camper roadworthy so I can move it as soon as possible.
GreyMattr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 12:18 PM   #77
2 Rivet Member
 
GreyMattr's Avatar
 
1978 31' Sovereign
Parkersburg , West Virginia
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 53
Images: 5
@GAStreamin

Do you have a thread started detailing where you are at with your full monte?

@Marzboy

Yeah, the windows were all closed for the lift off and I double checked the seals after we set it down. I'll need to do a little work around the door to get it just right.


I did notice that the wheel well cuts on the outer skin are a little off in their placement. I'll post pictures soon.
GreyMattr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 01:37 PM   #78
Rivet Master
 
GAStreamin's Avatar
 
2012 25' Flying Cloud
Moultrie , Georgia
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 521
Do you have a thread started detailing where you are at with your full monte?

Yes, I do. It is called Need Help: Where to Begin. I am not sure how to link it.
GAStreamin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 01:57 PM   #79
Tool Hoarder
 
Currently Looking...
West , California
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 907
Images: 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by GreyMattr View Post
@GAStreamin

Do you have a thread started detailing where you are at with your full monte?

@Marzboy

Yeah, the windows were all closed for the lift off and I double checked the seals after we set it down. I'll need to do a little work around the door to get it just right.

I did notice that the wheel well cuts on the outer skin are a little off in their placement. I'll post pictures soon.
The wheel wells are probably off because the ribs that sit on top of them need to be raised and attached. Also the frame Bowes so try jacking the rear and front and see how that changes the alignment.
marzboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2013, 03:27 PM   #80
2 Rivet Member
 
GreyMattr's Avatar
 
1978 31' Sovereign
Parkersburg , West Virginia
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 53
Images: 5
@Marzboy - The vertical alignment is fine (assuming that the "raising and attaching the ribs" suggestion to fix alignment meant you were talking about vertically.) Its the horizontal alignment of the shell that is the issue. Whats most puzzling is that it's only on one side. The below photo is of the curbside wheel well, which is aligned correctly:




The street side skin is a little too forward on the floor:








If the shell was crooked on the floor, I'd imagine that both sides would be skewed. The rear curbside corner is also the same corner that has about an inch gap between the skin and channeling:






Thoughts?
GreyMattr is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
sovereign


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Airstream, Inc. or any of its affiliates. Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:30 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.