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Old 01-18-2021, 09:45 PM   #1
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1981 31' Excella II
High point , North Carolina
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Posts: 4
Help please...value of 1996 21í sovereign!

Hi everyone,
Iím interested in purchasing this little beauty, but unfortunately I canít find any similar units out there to help me with a value in its current condition. Seems like Airstream only produced the 21í Sovereign from 1992-1996. Iím not sure if this makes this particular unit rare or not, but I havenít had much luck finding any out there for sale. This unit is a one owner with working plumbing, working electrical, working refrigerator, and working A/C. Propane tanks and front couch are both missing. The current owner started removing the vinyl padded headliner because the adhesive backing had started to fail causing the headliner to droop in areas. Original flooring and cabinet doors have all been removed. Sub floor is super solid. No leaks and all windows work. The exterior shell has oxidation in some areas but overall in decent shape. There is one medium sized dent on the drivers side rear corner of the airstream. Underbelly is extremely clean. Tires, axles, and awning are in good working condition.

The Owner is firm at $14,000. I know itís currently a sellers market but I want to make sure that Iím being fair to myself on the front side. Any help with the value of this unit in its current condition will be greatly appreciated. Thabks!
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Old 01-19-2021, 02:52 AM   #2
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1977 31' Sovereign
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Sunset Valley , Texas
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A 21’ sovereign, huh... a few years observations if I may.
On the plus side, that looks to be a great layout for its size.
21’, while cozy, would be a breeze to tow and park.
As for unknowns ... the axles are at or approaching the end of there lifespan, it’s hard to tell from the pictures but one way to test them would be to jack the trailer up and if the wheels drop down as the trailer raises, they’ve got some life left in them. With no propane tanks, you don’t know that the water heater, furnace, stove or LP mode on fridge work. What is the date code on the tires? 5 years is about the cutoff for tire life. Do the holding tanks work/leak? Does the water pump work? I’d inspect any cubby or access panel to determine the health of the plumbing. Pex or copper supply lines? Also, it leaks... somewhere. They all do. Whether from the exterior or plumbing, there is a leak or two. Check the floor with an awl or ice pick particularly around the perimeter near windows, the door and access panels.

That said, value is up to you, but I’d think it’s a fair-ish deal especially for the size and layout. There are a lot of unknowns but since the seller is firm, it’s up to you. I’ve never heard of one, but it’s rarity doesn’t make it especially valuable, it’s size, condition and the market dictate that.

I like it, it’ll require work, but it looks fun.

Ian
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Old 01-19-2021, 03:37 AM   #3
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1977 31' Sovereign
Rochester , WASHINGTON
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It looks like a good project trailer.Its sitting good over tires.I would put some LTs on it.
If you plan on keeping it, it's not bad for a 25 yr old trailer.
Those smaller ones are the ones that sell quick.If you compare the price with a new SOB, that's a way more unique trailer, and much less $$$ in that length range.
If you look at what people are paying for (45 K?) those new sawed off / single axle 14 footers, or whatever they are, new Airstream Basecamps, thats way more trailer, for way less $$$.
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Old 01-19-2021, 08:44 AM   #4
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These are very sought after units because of its short size and two axles - this one is a bit rough but assuming it has good bones is probably worth it - only thing that would turn me off to it is the dent in the back
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Old 01-19-2021, 09:07 AM   #5
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1977 31' Sovereign
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken J View Post
These are very sought after units because of its short size and two axles - this one is a bit rough but assuming it has good bones is probably worth it - only thing that would turn me off to it is the dent in the back
Ken- I think "A bit rough" even describes a brand new Airstream sitting at a dealer with a 2-3 page punch list
As for the dent, it makes it look like it's been used as intended, like a pickup.
You're a vintage guy, you know what I mean !
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Old 01-19-2021, 10:48 AM   #6
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Napa , California
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Anything is worth what anyone will actually pay for it. If you feel it is worth it, it is. Older "things" are harder to value and there can be so much hidden stuff to deal with that even a crystal ball won't help.

Does it have a clean title and can you check the vehicle records? Not that it will help. We once purchased a wonderful older used car driven by a little old lady who kept ALL the service records, had never driven on a highway and had lovingly had it detailed on a regular basis. A mechanic looked at, looked at the records and thought it was a great deal. And it was for a month or two until the engine died -at least it look cool in the driveway.

If you want it and if you think it is worth it, then it IS. If you are doubtful and hesitant, don't do it. And if you are waiting and thinking about it, our experience is that someone else will buy it just when you decide go for it.
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Old 01-19-2021, 12:09 PM   #7
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Assuming you fit on the bed and in the "Throne room" comfortably.

I'd bring a propane tank and if all the gas appliances work. I'd probably go for it.

Nice size and two axles is a winning combination.
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Old 01-19-2021, 12:35 PM   #8
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2001 28' Excella
2005 25' Classic
1988 23' Excella
Daphne , Alabama
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Cabinet doors.

Does the seller still have the cabinet doors ?
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Old 01-19-2021, 12:44 PM   #9
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1994 21' Sovereign
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Knoxville , Tennessee
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I bought my 21 footer 4 years ago for that amount, it had the same issues, gross carpet, sagging headliner, a dent(much smaller), old drapes. I put in new flooring, wife made some new drapes, I half way fixed the headliner, put on four new tires and we have put about 15,000 miles on it. That is the perfect traveling size, easy to park and maneuver gas stations and it has big tanks. I bet you can find a couch for it out of a gut project.
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Old 01-19-2021, 01:14 PM   #10
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The real question becomes, "What can you afford to have in the trailer?"

Trailer 14K, New axles/tires 3k, Frig 2K, AC 2K, New couch/bed/curtains/etc 2K, etc... Now, you might get lucky and frig/AC work (for now), but you'd still have 20k in the trailer and that does not include water heater, pump, etc.. and can you do the work or will you be paying someone to do it for you? If you have to pay someone to do the work, add more dollars.

Its a great layout, I have a 1970 23' Safari Special that has the same basic floorplan.

Enjoy,
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Old 01-19-2021, 06:47 PM   #11
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1981 31' Excella II
High point , North Carolina
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beaubill View Post
Does the seller still have the cabinet doors ?
He has all the cabinet doors but one.
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Old 01-19-2021, 06:49 PM   #12
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1981 31' Excella II
High point , North Carolina
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Khale View Post
I bought my 21 footer 4 years ago for that amount, it had the same issues, gross carpet, sagging headliner, a dent(much smaller), old drapes. I put in new flooring, wife made some new drapes, I half way fixed the headliner, put on four new tires and we have put about 15,000 miles on it. That is the perfect traveling size, easy to park and maneuver gas stations and it has big tanks. I bet you can find a couch for it out of a gut project.
How difficult was it to repair the sagging headliner? Did you redo with new vinyl padding and new adhesive?
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Old 01-19-2021, 08:31 PM   #13
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1994 21' Sovereign
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You canít glue it. A few strategically placed screws and white duct tape, not the best looking, maybe next winter Iíll do something nicer.
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Old 01-19-2021, 09:31 PM   #14
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1968 26' Overlander
CORDOVA , TN
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About $10,000.00, if everything works properly. If some system is broken, then it comes off the 10,000.00

Look at it his way....What will it be worth when you get everything fixed, and what will that cost you.....now put a value on your time, and be sure of one thing...whatever number you put on your time, it will not be close to enough....

If you think it will bring $30,000.00 all fixed up, then calculate it......but be realistic...as mentioned earlier, what something is actually worth is what someone will actually pay for it....
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Old 01-25-2021, 05:26 PM   #15
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1995 21' Sovereign
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Daphne , Alabama
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Duke,
I have a 1995, 21’, Sovereign. I paid $9,000 5 years ago in Denver. 88 year old man put many dents in it. Interior was a time capsule, even the carpet. Ins totaled mine after a hail storm for $17,000 2 years ago. I took $11,000 and kept it. What you have is a money pit. Unless you do it yourself and then divorce is a possibility. Thinking I would pass on that. Value $8,000 in that shape.
My headliner is doing the same. Really a problem as you have to remove the furniture to make it “right”.
Best of luck.
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