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Old 09-22-2021, 07:21 PM   #1
1 Rivet Member
PachariAdv's Avatar
1978 Argosy 24
Dallas , Texas
Join Date: Sep 2021
Posts: 8
1978 Argosy 24 - Pachari Adventures

Hello everyone!

This is my second time typing up this post, as the first time I didn't finish it before the forum auto-logged me out... live and learn I guess.

My wife and I recently picked up this '78 Argosy 24 and we're excited to eventually starting renovating it with the goal of living out of it full-time.

We had been planning for a few years now to be doing an international overlanding trip from Alaska to Argentina, but a number of factors have conspired to cause us to postpone that adventure for at least another year or three.

In the meantime, we agreed that a cool vintage trailer would be a nice in-between adventure :-)

After narrowing our target to the Argosy lineup, we felt like the 24' would be the right size to offer maneuverability and boondocking accessibility while still functioning for full-time living and working while on the road.

We're used to a roof-top tent so a ~20ft living space is luxury :-)

Anyway, searching high and low, this 78 popped up in Tucson and it looked like it fit the bill nicely, so we paid an inspector to go check it out.

We had him do a high-level inspection focused on towability in its current state and overall structural condition. We didn't feel it necessary to shell out for a complete systems test, etc as we had in our minds that we'd be doing a full gutting and resto-mod type renovation.

Satisfied with the results, I made the 14-hour drive from Dallas to Tucson to pick up the trailer.

Hooked up to the trailer and just pulled out of the seller's driveway. As part of the deal, they installed new tires and re-packed the hubs. Axles checked out in great condition during inspection.

The trailer had the old-style round 7-pin connector so I couldn't hook it up to my truck. Luckily, there was an autozone around the corned where I was able to buy some magnetic 4-pin lights and a couple extensions to make it work.

Before I could hit the highway, I stopped in at an RV store to see if they could swap out the plug for me, but no dice. I picked up some beefy new safety chains and hit the road.

It took a few miles to get used to towing the trailer but before long I settled in and was cruising at 65mph without issue.

The GX definitely feels a bit underpowered as a tow rig, especially on the hills, but overall it's not too bad. It's also extra heavy from all the overlanding gear :-P

It was a 2-day drive back to Dallas... had to stop at sunrise on day 2 for a quick photo. I made it home just before sunset and parked on the street. The next day, it was a bit of an adventure to back the trailer into our driveway.

We have a pretty decent sized dip in the transition from street to driveway, so we ended up having to disassemble one of our raised garden beds and use the wood as a bridge to keep from slamming the rear end into the driveway.

We were just barely able to squeeze in past our gate with about 1/2" of room on either side. TIGHT!

The next day it had cooled down enough to finally spend some time checking out the interior of the trailer. As mentioned, I was pretty surprised to find it in such good condition.

Still, for as good of condition as it's in, every time I go inside I notice more issues that will need to be addressed.

Since we're planning on being in it full-time, I'm thinking a full-monty is still a good idea so we can be confident there are no lurking/hidden issues.

Also, the center bed, rear bath setup isn't really ideal for us anyway.

This is our first take on a potential layout that we think will function for us while living/working out of the Argosy full-time... nothing earth shattering here.

Our rough design parameters are:
  • make it suitable for full-time living and working (remote jobs)
  • dinette needs room for 2 people to be working on laptops comfortably
  • dinette table will need to be large enough also for my wife's puzzles w/ storage for one in-progress puzzle inside... this will be a custom build for sure! Maybe #1 design requirement ;-)
  • queen or slightly larger bed
  • bathroom with shower and bidet-enabled toilet
  • boondocking beast - we'll stuff as much solar and lithium batteries as we can, re-using 300W and 300AH that we already have in our overlanding rig and adding whatever else will fit.
  • lift kit - researching to see if we can do better than the standard dexter lift.
  • internet is important for work so we'll have a couple systems in place around that
  • reuse as much of the interior as possible

In terms of my renovation strategy, I'm still researching and learning.

We'll be leaving Texas for Oregon in December and will be starting the full renovation sometime in January/February.

I'll be working on it full-time with nights/weekend help from the wife, so hopefully it will progress briskly.

For now, I've just got a new 7-pin blade style plug wired up which has most of the marker/running lights working. I've ordered new bulbs for the rest so hopefully the trip to Oregon will be slightly less stressful than Tucson->Dallas.

I am really looking forward to being inspired by everyone else's trailers and I'm sure I'll be asking a lot of questions along the way!

I'll do my best to post regular updates once the renovation is underway.

Cheers to all!
Pachari Adventures
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Old 09-22-2021, 10:06 PM   #2
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Hittenstiehl's Avatar
1962 28' Ambassador
1961 19' Globetrotter
1962 26' Overlander
Mesa , Arizona
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 5,120
Images: 9
Welcome. What a great find. 24 ft is a great size. Nice photos.

Clean it up and use it for some kind of camping (dry camping) before you take it apart. Gutting is easy. Putting it back is a whole different story. Like a old house remodel one thing begets another and the next thing years have gone by.

Of course if you are going to full time and work in it you'll be extra motivated.

We'll follow along and root for your success.

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Old 09-28-2021, 04:01 PM   #3
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PachariAdv's Avatar
1978 Argosy 24
Dallas , Texas
Join Date: Sep 2021
Posts: 8
I've been working on getting the exterior lights working.

Got a new 7-blade plug spliced in and so far I've confirmed that the left/right turn signals and brake lights are functioning normally.

I've confirmed that there is power to the top marker lights, but pretty much all the grounds seem to be bad... so I need to get that figured out and cleaned up effectively.

For the life of me I can't get the tail/reverse lights to work

Also, does anyone know if there is a place that sells the tail light housings? Mine seem to be extremely brittle and I've cracked a few of them trying to get the lenses off.

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Old 09-28-2021, 11:34 PM   #4
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1978 Argosy 30
Auburn , Washington
Join Date: Jun 2018
Posts: 78
Images: 1
I am in the same boat as you when it comes to those lights. I bumped mine and cracked one. I haven't seen then on anything but a late model Argosy. The earlier ones have a bar that goes across the back. Getting lights with a flat bezel doesn't work because the aluminum is molded and recessed. So my solution if nobody else has any other options is to take it to a vacuum former and see if they can mold me some new bezels. I haven't done more than look up to see if someone does it. Hope this helps and welcome to the forum.

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