Free 7 Day Trial RV GPS App RV Trip Planner Campground Reviews RV Maintenance Free 7 Day Trial ×
 


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 05-28-2015, 12:46 AM   #81
2 Rivet Member
 
1972 27' Overlander
Loomis , California
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 74
Breaking Bad

One of the other tasks was to fix the bolts on the front C-channel curve. The elevator bolts just wouldn't stop spinning, no matter what I tried. I finally realized that the amazingly clever idea of using the big flat head instead of a washer wasn't worth my sanity (or my marraige), so I went and bought some regular hex-head 3/8th x 2" bolts. That let me reuse the washers and nyla-nuts, at least.

I had purchased a bunch of nasa-spec IR-reflective personal safety tarpolins via mail order from a secure supplier, er, Mylar emergency blankets off of EBay, and cut squares to use as a sperator between the steel washers and the C-Channel. Worked like a dream. Total cost: $3.25

Once that was done, I turned to the wheel wells. For those of you following along at home, you'll recall that we were sold the wrong item, and had decided to fabricate our own. How hard can it be, right?

I ordered two sheets of 0.063" 3003, and made some fab plans. I stopped by Blue Collar Supply in Sac, and got some 0.063" remnants for testing. Damn, it's hard to bend! So, time to make a brake. Bought some angle iron, steel piano hinge, bar stock, and headed home. Being "Web-Certified" in iron-mongery, I whipped up a brake, and gave it a test.

Nada.

The brake needed to be 60" long for the wheelwells, and what I had built wasn't nearly stiff enough. Not having access to a welder (hint, hint), I had made it using bolts as the connection, and then clamping it to my work bench. The press down bar might as well have been made of ribbon. Looking back at the videos, most folks were bending 18 - 22 gauge steel sheet. I was bending 14-gauge. (Which is why I couldn't just buy one at HF.)

That was Friday. Fortunately, Friday night is steak-and-martinis night at the lazy-K, and that helped my mood significantly.

As I was drifting off to sleep, with visions of elevator bolts dancing in my head, it occurred to me that if I drilled another few holes in the hold-down bar, It should hold it rigid. That meant drilling some holes through my aluminum stock, but I figured I could patch that with aluma-weld, or rivets and vulcom in a pinch.

The next day, I gave that a try, and it worked quite well! Did the first set of bends w/o much problem. Not quite as sharp as I recall form shop class, but beggars can be choosy.

I realized too late, however, that I had forgotten to bend the flange that would go under the floor boards first, and now it wouldn't fit into the brake for me to make that bend. Out came the peening hammer and the sharp edged table. Much, much banging later, I had hammered the flat, and was ready to fit.

Bummer.

It didn't fit.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3525.jpg
Views:	70
Size:	312.6 KB
ID:	239433   Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3531.jpg
Views:	67
Size:	324.8 KB
ID:	239434  

Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3532.jpg
Views:	82
Size:	274.2 KB
ID:	239435   Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3533.jpg
Views:	85
Size:	159.5 KB
ID:	239436  

digidad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2015, 12:59 AM   #82
2 Rivet Member
 
1972 27' Overlander
Loomis , California
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 74
Measure twice, cut once, then determine the facts on the ground

Airstreams of the day were not precision manufactured. They were made from blueprints, not CAD systems, freehand by men, not CNC milled.

And, in the last fifty years, they dimensions have changed. The "interior" wheel wells (which is the one closed to the wheels - go figure) on our trailer had been shattered, and so measuring them was a best-guess kind of thing. I used the size of the existing cut-out in the floor panels as a guide, and the measurements of the current wheel wells ("They're just the same size! I promise they'll fit."), and thought I had it nailed.

Nope.

They were 1" too wide, 5/8" too long, and the inside flange was 1 1/2" too long. Out came the metal sheers (HF - worked great!), the hand circular saw, and then the Ryobi multi-tool. Quick work, for once! Loosened the elevator bolts, used a couple of putty-knives for shims, and in it slid.

Woo-hoo!

Next morning, i added an additional hold-down bolt through the middle of the brake, and that improved the performance. Knocked out the second wheel well, riveted the ends together, and installed it.

Off to a movie with the familly, and sweet dreams...
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3527.jpg
Views:	58
Size:	338.2 KB
ID:	239437  
digidad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2015, 01:08 AM   #83
2 Rivet Member
 
1972 27' Overlander
Loomis , California
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 74
Channelling your energies

On her whirl-wind trip of part procurement, my lovely wife picked up some straight C-channel. With that, along with a wire brush and the good channel we pulled off the frame, I replaced the track all the way around the floor. That includes the back steel hold-down plate, with more mylar spray-adhesived to it. Mylar, of course, between the washer and the channel, and the channel and the outriggers. For the moment, bolts are only through the outriggers. Inter-rigger bolts I can do later.

Turns out that the 2" bolts I had were a little too long - they extend past the end of the outriggers. Back to HD for 1 1/2" bolts.

Phew.

Remember the comment about wheel well measurements? Yeah. Well, the C-Channel curved piece that went over the originals don't fit. My simple 45 degree bends don't match the graceful curve of the original, by a blasted inch. Ordered the replacement channel from Grainger.

Back to work in the real world... Blah.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3534.jpg
Views:	72
Size:	426.9 KB
ID:	239438   Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3535.jpg
Views:	68
Size:	419.2 KB
ID:	239439  

Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3538.jpg
Views:	83
Size:	371.7 KB
ID:	239440  
digidad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2015, 08:36 AM   #84
Rivet Master
 
dbj216's Avatar

 
1986 34' Limited
1975 27' Overlander
Conifer , Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 6,602
Images: 1
What's with this making posts on your thread in the middle of the night? You need your rest. You're not a college student any longer!

Your descriptions of all the trials and tribulations of building an Airstream are typical of what we all experience. There are countless problems to solve.

I am enjoying your writing style. You make all these problems sound like fun!

You know you will still be working on your trailer next year at this time, don't you?

David
dbj216 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2015, 09:34 AM   #85
4 Rivet Member
 
youngpeck's Avatar
 
1976 25' Caravanner
Salt Lake City , Utah
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 397
Very informative and helpful descriptions. And useful pictures. I'm especially interested in following your progress, as I am in many ways following in your footsteps. Recently pulled the shell, removed the old subfloor, and this weekend will be flipping the frame to remove the belly pan and the tanks on my 25-foot '76 Caravanner. Thanks so much for the detailed and intelligent updates!
youngpeck is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2015, 12:38 PM   #86
2 Rivet Member
 
1972 27' Overlander
Loomis , California
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 74
David - I work some weird hours for a variety of weird reasons....

I tend to do my posts after I get home from work on Mondays/Tuesdays, which makes it about 10PM PST.

The problems suck, but finding the solutions is fun, and the sense of accomplishment when you get past them is great. And given all the inspiration that I've received from reading other folk's blogs (although they never seem to make the same mistakes that I do), the least I can do is to true and help someone else either avoid my errors, or not have to re-invent the wheel solving them.

And hell, I'll be working on this trailer the year after next at the same time. but by then it'll all be "inside". :-}
digidad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2015, 01:06 PM   #87
2 Rivet Member
 
1972 27' Overlander
Loomis , California
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 74
Wheel Well drawings

Here are the CAD drawings for the wheel wells. They are done in Geomagic Design/Alibre, along with a PDF version.

Feel free to use them as a starting point!

Edit: I cannot upload the CAD files themselves, so please e-mail me if you'd like them.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf document.pdf (87.0 KB, 38 views)
digidad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-29-2015, 11:14 PM   #88
2 Rivet Member
 
1972 27' Overlander
Loomis , California
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 74
Shiny belly

Today was very productive. Spent the morning wiring up the brakes. I read in one of the threads that the brakes pull 3A apiece, so with the tandum axle, I need to handle 12A. I ran 14/2 romex from the A-Frame to first axle. From each brake drum I ran a pair of 14 gauge stranded wire. Wire nuts tie them all together.

I was worried about how to keep the wires from chafing, and I think I must have done everything I could think of. There was a small gap between the axle and the mounting bracket, and I put a piece of 3/16" vinyl tubing through it, and fed the brake wires through. That got me from outside the frame body to the inside. I took apiece of 3/8" tubing and glued it down the mounting bracket, to get the wires through the bellypan. I had used romex staples (the plastic ones with two small nails) to hold down the 14/2 run, and used some more for strain-relief/imbolization for the stranded wire. With any luck, nothing will move...

Laurel picked up four rolls of reflectix to use for the underflor insulation, and the instructions noted that we needed an air-gap. The sisters provide an offset on every other stringer, so she decided to make 1" rails for the other stringers for stapling the reflectix. While she was cutting the strips and sealing the wood, I drilled for the first belly pan panels. Vacuumed up the swarf, and had a beer.

Tomorrow, the belly pan.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3543.jpg
Views:	95
Size:	503.3 KB
ID:	239538  
digidad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2015, 11:27 PM   #89
2 Rivet Member
 
1972 27' Overlander
Loomis , California
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 74
She's dead, Jim

We had our first casualty. The little pancake compressor from HF lasted a good 5 years, but finally died. In the middle of installing the insulation.

Crap.

No worries, I have a 2nd hand Sears 240V compressor that I bought at a flea market and got working. Admittedly, the number of extension hoses left more than a little to be desired, but I don't have a 240V extension cord. Got it up and running, but the 100 degree heat was too much, and it shut down just after I got the tank filled. Looks like a pump tear down is on the project list.

Crap.

A very exhaustive ten minute search showed the 8 gal Husky from HD to be a fine candidate, at only $99. Laurel was off, back, and we were in business again. Finished up the insulation, and then the sheet metal belly pan. It looks *awesome*, but the full pict is on my wife's phone.

crap.

I love my HF pop-rivetter. It makes those belly-pan rivets from VTS fly! I also learned why people put clecos in every hole as they drill it. I have one hole off by less than 1/16", and ended up having to redrill a long line of holes. Thank goodness it's only the bellypan. And since they'll have to come off at some point when I do the plumbing...
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3557.jpg
Views:	85
Size:	678.0 KB
ID:	240296   Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3560.jpg
Views:	70
Size:	326.5 KB
ID:	240297  

Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3558.jpg
Views:	67
Size:	532.9 KB
ID:	240298   Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3561.jpg
Views:	67
Size:	313.1 KB
ID:	240299  

Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3562.jpg
Views:	67
Size:	405.0 KB
ID:	240300   Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3563.jpg
Views:	75
Size:	324.3 KB
ID:	240301  

digidad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2015, 11:53 PM   #90
2 Rivet Member
 
1972 27' Overlander
Loomis , California
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 74
Cover yourself, madam...

Today's the big day. Flipped the trailer back over, disconnected the gantry slings, and made ready to re-unite the 1972 shell with the 2015 frame and floor. While I had the chance, I decided to crank out new C-Channel for the wheel wells. 2" x 1" x 8' from Granger, delivered to my local store in two days. Shweet! The forming was pretty easy - two V-cuts at either end for the in-bends, and four slices for the out-bends. Two bolts apiece, done.

The other thing I did was to take "alumiweld" and patch over the seams on the wheel wells. It was really easy, and since they're non-structural, it doesn't even matter if they were to fail. What it does do is provide a great backing for applying Vulcom. I sealed the inside of the wells, and that is that.

Moving the gantries from the trailer-frame assembly plant to the upper-stage alignment facility wasn't nearly as awful as the original move had been. I picked up a pair of solid wheels from HF, stuck an old # -7 screwdriver through it, and put it between the rails of the gantry. The Mrs. and I wheeled them over without too much difficulty. The HF trailer dolly was enough to move said trailer from said plant to said facility with a minimum of bad language, and no hernias. We lined it up best we could, and raised the shell.

Yuck. Once we had cut the vines that wanted to keep the shell earth-bound, there was lots of crud on the bottow inside of the shell. 20% old butyl tape, 15% dirt that three power-washes hadn't removed, 60% corrosion byproducts, 1% missed rivet heads, and 4%, um, mouse art. Brass wire wheels make short(-ish) work of that. Everyone helped.

I don't remember the door being that hard to use before...

We pulled the trailer in, and started lowering. The faithful reader will recall that there was no back floor panel when we started this little journey. The layout was essentially a best guess. So we started with the back, and tried to ease it together. NFWIH. (NSFW) I tried, Laurel tried, the girls tried. The shell was just too narrow to want to fit. We straightened ribs, nipped out interfering C-channel, tried shims, heard load and terrifying "Bang-Crashes" when pieces, um, shifted, but nothing worked.

Terror. I kept a happy face, not wanting the rest of the crew to know just how nervous I was. And it didn't help that the yard isn't exactly level, and the shell tilts toward the curb side (we finally realized it was the door). We were getting ready to give up, when I figured we might as well get the front on, and then I could figure out what I had to fix on the back. Raised the shell a little, moved the trailer forward a little, started lowering from the front. The hold-down went in OK, as did the door. A couple terrifying scrapes from the wheel-well area, and that seemed to be moving. one corner of the back in place... nothing. Stuck.

In a stroke on engineering genius, Laurel kicked a rib in the back corner, and issued an old french spell. Crash! The girls scrambled out of the trailer. I look to assess the damage.

Laurel is in the back, smiling.

Houston, we have completed docking. The damn thing fits.

Beer time.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3567.jpg
Views:	74
Size:	451.3 KB
ID:	240302   Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3572.jpg
Views:	88
Size:	285.7 KB
ID:	240303  

Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3573.jpg
Views:	70
Size:	403.8 KB
ID:	240304   Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3574.jpg
Views:	80
Size:	396.4 KB
ID:	240305  

Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3580.jpg
Views:	90
Size:	349.2 KB
ID:	240306   Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3581.jpg
Views:	73
Size:	336.1 KB
ID:	240307  

Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3583.jpg
Views:	77
Size:	269.6 KB
ID:	240308   Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3584.jpg
Views:	88
Size:	372.5 KB
ID:	240309  

digidad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2015, 11:54 PM   #91
2 Rivet Member
 
1972 27' Overlander
Loomis , California
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 74
Goodnight, sweetheart

I leave you with a last image
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3586.jpg
Views:	88
Size:	163.0 KB
ID:	240311  
digidad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2015, 03:59 AM   #92
Rivet Master
 
dbj216's Avatar

 
1986 34' Limited
1975 27' Overlander
Conifer , Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 6,602
Images: 1
Enjoyed reading your update. Very, very good you got it to fit with a carefully placed kick in the rear. It must be very satisfying, and a big relief to get the shell on your new chassis.

David
dbj216 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2015, 05:19 PM   #93
4 Rivet Member
 
millertimeUS's Avatar
 
1976 25' Tradewind
, Florida
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 353
Awesome! Well done and bravo on a successful reunion. I know the feeling, enjoy the victory and then take a deep breath..... It ain't over yet



Sent from my iPhone using Airstream Forums

76 'Airstream Tradewind
__________________
Matt
millertimeUS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2015, 07:58 PM   #94
2 Rivet Member
 
1972 27' Overlander
Loomis , California
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 74
David, a HUGE relief. For a while there, I thought I was going to have to redo the entire floor. I have a hunch that wouldn't have gone over very well...

Matt, Thanks! We're following right behind you, and it's great to be reminded that it's actually possible to do it.

Now, the big challenge is that we're supposed to take this beast on our first rally this weekend...
digidad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-10-2015, 10:58 AM   #95
Rivet Master
 
Currently Looking...
K.C. , Missouri
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 585
Wow. Awesome looking work. Both you and Millertime.... I am watching both. These resto threads are the main reason I hang out here, because I still have it in the back of my mind I want to do one of these eventually.
Keep up the good work....all of you doing these projects, and thanks for documenting the progress.
gmw photos is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-10-2015, 11:07 AM   #96
3 Rivet Member
 
chilipepper's Avatar
 
1971 27' Overlander
Dickinson , North Dakota
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 115
Images: 5
Great post! Shell off is a big step and it looks like you nailed it. I have a '71 and did the sneak a sheet method of fixing the rear rot and separation issues. I would have had to purchase another trailer to camp in if I did a shell off. My family loves to camp too much!

Do you have a plan for the electrical and interior?

Congrats on the progress!!
__________________
Ryan Jilek
WBCCI 7165 | TAC ND-3

Ms. Streamy - 1971 Overlander Restoration Blog
chilipepper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2015, 12:20 AM   #97
New and Eager
 
O Shiny's Avatar
 
1972 27' Overlander
Vintage Kin Owner
Loomis , California
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 53
Images: 5
Blog Entries: 7
Update from digidad's little missus....he worked his rear end off and we made it to our first rally! The trailer towed great behind my Odyssey minivan (LOL) and was a wonderful aluminum tent for two nights. We had such fun with a NorCal WBCCI group. Lots of new friends, trailers to inspire us, and they were all super supportive of our efforts with the Overlander.

Click image for larger version

Name:	11391768_10206985963832909_2527367627467258974_n.jpg
Views:	84
Size:	90.3 KB
ID:	240760

Click image for larger version

Name:	11401007_10206991972903132_5603283785206898052_n.jpg
Views:	88
Size:	36.6 KB
ID:	240761
O Shiny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-20-2015, 12:54 AM   #98
4 Rivet Member
 
millertimeUS's Avatar
 
1976 25' Tradewind
, Florida
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 353
Very nice work! Glad to see you all enjoying the fruits of your labor.


Now get back at it!!!

Cheers


Sent from my iPhone using Airstream Forums

76 'Airstream Tradewind
__________________
Matt
millertimeUS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-20-2015, 07:06 AM   #99
Rivet Master
 
dbj216's Avatar

 
1986 34' Limited
1975 27' Overlander
Conifer , Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 6,602
Images: 1
An Airstream rally, what fun. And many more to come I'm sure. Not you have to take you aluminum tent and start adding the comforts of home. That's why Airstreams were invented.

I'm installing a very expensive Dometic fridge in my old Trade Wind so I can keep the milk cold. Such a luxury while camping. As well as running hot and cold water, as well as your very own private biffy, as well as a real mattress, as well as an AC to keep you cool at night. Yep, lots of work and expense ahead.

David
dbj216 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2015, 10:28 AM   #100
Rivet Master
 
1972 27' Overlander
Denver , North Carolina
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 760
Images: 4
Well worth it...


Sent from my iPhone using Airstream Forums
__________________


Lucky Dave, Denver NC
mccrosti is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


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


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Paris Hilton, Nicole Richie begin a second season of 'The Simple Life' Andy R Airstream "In the News" 1 07-03-2004 03:14 PM
Adding a second battery... drboyd Electrical - Systems, Generators, Batteries & Solar 3 07-28-2003 12:45 PM
Time for that second Honda 2000 Raptorrider2001 Our Community 2 06-17-2003 05:57 PM
Second Battery w9det 1997 - 1999 Safari 5 12-06-2002 06:42 PM
Second Proud Wally Award BobbyW Our Community 0 07-02-2002 05:41 AM


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 03:39 PM.


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