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Old 01-09-2004, 03:04 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally posted by Big Dee
Dan,
I just gotta say you have one great attitude! There is no way I could be so positive after dropping so much money and having such an experience. This just proves again that Airstreamers are the coolest!
If Airstream keeps this dealer, I will be very disappointed in them.
Agreed!
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Old 01-09-2004, 03:05 PM   #42
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One more photo - the front lower right panel. Notice the filiform corrosion. Anywhere a bug "donated it's life to trailering" resulted in a tiny break in the plasticoat. This provided an entry point for water and air. The "worm tracks" are where it eats its way along underneath the plasticoat.

My trailer has NOT been on gravel roads, except a couple campground driveways that were travelled at 10 mph - so for the most part these are not stone chips. My tow vehicle, a 2002 Explorer, is stone chip and corrosion free.
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Old 01-09-2004, 09:17 PM   #43
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Corrosion

After looking at this thread I see this trailer has the same corrosion symptoms as my 2003 Bambi. But I am parked 2 blocks from the Pacific ocean, and based on my expeirience with corosion at the coast, I feel this trailer has sat for a few months by the sea. I have the identical filliform problems, and I too walbernized the hell out of the rig. I think it is just the salt air, I cant' win unless I have a dry heated storage facility.

As for the full pooper boy I would go ape **** over that.
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Old 01-15-2004, 06:55 PM   #44
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Unhappy

Sorry to hear about all the problems you are having. My wife and I have been experiencing quality issues as well along with poor local servicing. I got so sick of it, I starting doing the work myself. I wish I had time to take it directly to Airstream.

Anyway, let us know how everthing went at the factory when you get back..

Take care...
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Old 03-26-2004, 12:24 PM   #45
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Update

An update to all this... now that the snow is gone from the far northland I will tow the trailer to Jackson Center the weekend of April 3-4.

Jim P. of Airstream says to repair the failing plasticoat they will overlap with new metal. Basically they drill out the rivits, do not remove the old metal, lay a new piece of metal over the old, drill and Olympic rivit the new on. He says this is the way they have been repairing tears, dents, etc for years. Questions, will this:

- add a significant amount of weight?
- result in eventual corrosion between the sheets?
- drilling of new rivit holes turn the ribs into swiss-cheese, weakening the structure? This would be compensated by having two layers of metal.
- are Olympic rivits as good as bucked rivits?
- end up with the first bulletproof Airstream?
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Old 03-26-2004, 12:40 PM   #46
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You know, JodynJeep get intimate with a guard rail on the curbside of his coach. When he brought the coach to Jackson Center, they replaced the sheetmetal. You can see the work they did here:

http://wbcb.com/PhotoGroup/Airstream...3/default.aspx


I would think that they would do the same since the panel is defective. As you can see, they replaced the panels on Jody's coach, it does not appear that they overlapped them. I don't think it would add that much weight or have any corrosion issues if they did do it, but I always assumed that they just replaced the panels as they did with Jody's. From what I understand, buck rivets are better, but the Olympic rivets are good too. The issue is from my understanding is that buck rivets would require the inside to be torn up to properly apply a buck rivet.

Eric
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Old 03-26-2004, 12:46 PM   #47
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From those photos I'd think that when they drill out the rivits they will be 99.9% of the way towards completely removing the old panel, then just install the new one. I wonder why they want to overlay the old with new?
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Old 03-26-2004, 01:00 PM   #48
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I would think so. I know that there is some sealant that is applied to the sheet joints on the inside before the insulation and inner walls are attached. Perhaps they don't want to disturb that. But then I'd wonder what they did with Jody's coach as it does look like a panel replacement.

I've dealt with Jim, he's a real straight shooter, I don't know enough about the process to comment ouside of my couch coach position. Jim would be better suited to answer some of the questions brought up here.

Eric
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Old 03-26-2004, 01:22 PM   #49
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Delamination

Having lived in Florida for a number of years, I can tell you that the sun can heat the coach to very high temperatures and that can cause the laminating glue to become gooey; and that's the truth!

Ever pay a visit to Don Mar in South Carolina? There you can see first hand what heat can do to laminated surfaces.

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Old 03-26-2004, 01:56 PM   #50
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More 2003 Safari Issues

We purchased a 2003 Bambi in May of 2003 which as we have used it has developed any number of quality issues. The least of which have been the exterior. The unit was manufactured in May of 2002 and has the interior cabinetry described above not the cabinetry of the later 2003's. Our biggest problem with the cabinets has been doors coming apart, hinges pulling out of the "wood" misaligned doors, drawers places so low on the floor that they cannot be opened, etc. A furnace not installed correctly, wiring hanging loose in the closet, cracked air conditioner cover resulting from a very poor design. The shelving behind the table seats is pulling out of the walls as it was never supported properly and the paneling under the bed looks like a piece of swiss cheese as a result of the person putting the screws in to secure it not being able to find the proper location for the screws. And then there is the shower that does not drain because the drain line was bent up and over the water lines rather than being properly installed. The door that has to be slammed so hard that the lens cover on the outside door light pops out or the gas pig tails that started leaking with in the first week of ownership. We are convinced this was a prototype not a real Airstream. Dealer has not been overly helpful in addressing issues and when I took pictures and sent them to the factory I got caught up in the catch 22 of take it to the dealer. I have been slowly correcting the problems myself, but, yes, there are some quality issues with the 2003 Bambi I purchased.
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Old 03-26-2004, 01:58 PM   #51
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After rereading this thread, I have to say what a nice feeling it is that after a month of use of my new coach, I still have not had ONE quality control problem! I find that amazing. How can there not be one quality problem?

I do have a design problem. My A-frame box lid hits the generator outlet box when openning. But Toscano can fix it easy enough.

So no trips to Jackson Center for me thank god. Good luck dmac and hope they get it all fixed for you.
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Old 03-26-2004, 02:10 PM   #52
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Having had an '03 and now having an '04, it is a night and day difference.

Eric
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Old 04-05-2004, 05:14 PM   #53
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I just got home last night from a long trek from Minnesota to Jackson Center and back. I arrived in JC on Friday night and parked in a "Terraport" campsite behind the service building - nice to have hookups, although my sewer hose would not reach the drain (they also have a separate dump station, which worked fine). On Saturday the service facility was closed, so I parked it in their lot and left the keys, per their instructions. They can fix it at their leisure over the next few weeks, as I have no trips planned until summer.

They must do a lot of aluminum skin replacements - as I saw many dented trailers nearby, and a big dumpster filled with aluminum bits.

I saw one newer Bambi with major plasticoat peeling, much worse than mine. I also saw a number of newer trailers that do not show the corrosion problems that mine has. My frame rails, underbelly skin, A-frame, stabilizing jacks... everything is corroding. I still wonder if mine was parked in the surf by the Florida dealer!

My trailer came with a plastic battery box that holds one group 27 battery - like a Bambi. Most Safari 25's that I see have a metal box that can hold two batteries. I have requested a quote from Airstream on the cost to upgrade mine to the metal box.

Also, I noticed that my local Wal-Mart has group 27 deep cycle batteries on sale for $35.
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Old 05-04-2004, 09:50 PM   #54
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Follow-Up report

I received my trailer back from JC about 2 weeks ago... here is what I know:

1. When they replace a skin they may remove none, some, most or all of the damaged skin - depending on where it's located. In the photos referenced by Silvertwinkie you will notice that most of the damaged skin was removed, not all (the edges were left). My trailer now has a minor near-crease just below the belt line on the front right panel. I will attach a photo in the future so you can see what I mean. It appears to be caused by forcing the new metal over the left over underlying skin. Also, although the shaved "pop rivits" (Olympic) are okay, they are visibly slightly different than real rivits - you can see the center mandrel.

2. Corrosion on the skin surrounding Airstream logos was addressed by installing an extension to the logos - effectively making them larger, covering up the corrosion. Questionable tactic, but frankly I don't know what else they could have done short of replacing more skins - which would have probably caused more problems than it solved.

3. Corroded wheels replaced.

4. Corroded exterior light casting replaced.

5. Missing drop-down table - they said this was not included in my model/year (although I recall it was shown on the floorplan for a Safari 25SS in the 03 brochure). I'll either make one or live without it.

6. Delaminating cabinate doors were replaced.

7. Other interior problems all appear to have been addressed.

From my experience the lightweight balsa-wood-like core material that makes up the Safari cabinates do not hold screws well, so you can expect hinges, stays, and whatever else to pull out easily.

The quote to upgrade my battery box was $600, so I passed. I may have a welder build one for me at some point.

And yes - I have already Walbernized the new sheetmetal, and put the trailer back in the pole barn... until Memorial Day weekend.
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Old 04-10-2005, 01:31 PM   #55
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Another follow-up...

- For the record my trailer was built in April of 2002 as a 2003 model.
- I have attached two photos of the factory repairs: one photo shows a front skin where they creased the metal about 1" below the beltline, another shows where they covered up the corrosion around the Airstream logo with a plastic oval surround.
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Old 04-10-2005, 10:43 PM   #56
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Dmac, did the factory put the buldge in both sides? We have the same problem with our Airstream logo. That is a funky factory fix. The corrosion will eventually grow beyond the plastic cover.
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Old 04-11-2005, 08:04 AM   #57
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The crease, or bulge, is only on one side. The other side looks fine.

Yes - the corrosion will worm track it's way beyond the cover-up over time.
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Old 04-11-2005, 08:26 PM   #58
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Name plate

My trailer also had the same filiform corrosion behind the name plate. I used some acrylic -r and resealed the name plate. So far it has not migrated further. I wonder if this could be depriving it of the oxgen it needs to spread. Also that ring fix is a little hoaky.
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Old 12-07-2008, 09:10 PM   #59
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We have an 03 Safari SS mfg in July 2002. We are the 2nd owners of the unit and have not experienced any major problems. Yes, we do hve the peelng of the coating on the front and the back of the unit. Corrission around the logos and on the tire rims. No major problems with the interior. When not in use we keep the trailer in our hanger that is only 10 minutes away from our house so, at least, during our ownership it does not sit outsdie very much to be exposed to the elements of the weather. I clean the outside of the trailer after each use and in between trips. In other words, I don't let the dust settle on it

There isn't very much you can do about the corrission issue other than treat it with something like Corrission X. It's a way of life with Airstreams.
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Old 12-07-2008, 09:58 PM   #60
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I also store my trailer in a heated hangar... right behind my plane (see photo). The corrosion has not become significantly worse, probably due to the dry indoor storage.
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