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Old 07-08-2019, 09:25 PM   #1
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What kind of Airstream am I looking at?

First time poster, long time lurker! Interested in looking at a Airstream I found in my area listed for around $9k. I have attached some pictures from the ad that I received and I have a couple of questions I would love some advice on...

1. What kind of trailer is this? The owner says its a 1970 24ft Airstream, but I am not finding this layout, some of the pictures show Land Yacht.

2. Based on the small amount of images, would you consider this worth a 2 hour drive to look at? I do understand there are some things that need to be updated, but my biggest concern is structure. I am happy to see there is no rust on the outside.

3. When i do go and look, what are some things I should keep my eyes out for? The goal is that if I will also have it checked over by a RV place to make sure there aren't any hidden surprises.

I am told that this unit has a furnace, but not air conditioning. My goal is to live in it full time (including winter) and to really remove the whole Black tank scenario and use a composting toilet to lessen freezing. When it comes to showering, I live in a large town with lots of family so during the winter I have plans to just use jugs of water and my local Planet Fitness.

Thank you so much!
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Old 07-08-2019, 09:27 PM   #2
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A very nice looking one!
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Old 07-08-2019, 09:32 PM   #3
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Maybe a 24ft double bed Tradewind, floorplan looks similar to that. Landyacht would be considered the trimline. Should be a tag by the door with a serial (Vin) # and it's name. Air conditioner could have been optional or removed. Check for soft floor and rear end sag. Looks nice.
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Old 07-08-2019, 09:38 PM   #4
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PS just looked at where you live, Wyoming in the winter will be tuff. Airstreams are not considered 4 season trailers. If you can skirt the bottom, heating will produce lots of interior condensation. They are kind of like aluminum cans and highly suseptible to what they're exposed to. A bit of sun and they heat up nicely, cold and they get quite chilly. Maybe you can find a barn or hanger to put it in. Several have done it with determination, dilligence and sheer stubborn. I don't think any of them ever came back and said they were doing it for a second winter.
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Old 07-09-2019, 05:22 AM   #5
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2003 25' Classic
Zanadude Nebula , Milky Way
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Welcome Aboard....👍

Beautiful trailer...take a close-up of the build tag, it's usually around the door. The Sr# will produce more info. The red numbers indicate Wally Byam Club membership, more info maybe available from the archives.
Keep considering it's usage & remember it's a trailer and meant to be on the road.
As noted...not the ideal choice for Montana Winters but definitely worth the 2hr drive. 👍

Bob
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Old 07-09-2019, 09:31 AM   #6
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1966 26' Overlander
1981 31' Excella Limited
1964 22' Safari
Ramona , California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryoukoe View Post
First time poster, long time lurker! Interested in looking at a Airstream I found in my area listed for around $9k. I have attached some pictures from the ad that I received and I have a couple of questions I would love some advice on...

1. What kind of trailer is this? The owner says its a 1970 24ft Airstream, but I am not finding this layout, some of the pictures show Land Yacht.

2. Based on the small amount of images, would you consider this worth a 2 hour drive to look at? I do understand there are some things that need to be updated, but my biggest concern is structure. I am happy to see there is no rust on the outside.

3. When i do go and look, what are some things I should keep my eyes out for? The goal is that if I will also have it checked over by a RV place to make sure there aren't any hidden surprises.

I am told that this unit has a furnace, but not air conditioning. My goal is to live in it full time (including winter) and to really remove the whole Black tank scenario and use a composting toilet to lessen freezing. When it comes to showering, I live in a large town with lots of family so during the winter I have plans to just use jugs of water and my local Planet Fitness.

Thank you so much!
Layout looks similar to my 66 Overlander. Looks to be in excellent condition for its age but as pointed out you have to dig deeper into subfloor and possibly frame. Price seems fair if nothing major is discovered. Unless heater is newer you must plan to replace as it is unsafe. Heaters are not expensive.
I would not want to live in an airstream in that climate. You will spend a lot of money on propane and/or electicity and still not be comfortable.
Make a fun day of it and check it out but weigh the realities of the challenges you face before you commit. If your goal is to own an airstream for years to come and your plan is to push through 1 winter and then go on the road to more moderate climates that trailer might be a good choice. But if you are expecting to be locked into the extreme winters for years to come the romance of an AS may quickly fad away
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Old 07-09-2019, 09:38 AM   #7
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2017 30' Classic
Carlisle , Pennsylvania
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Hi

Judging by the pictures, I'd guess that trailer never had A/C on it. If so, there will be a bit of work involved in adding it to the trailer.

Overall, it's in *way* better shape than many of the "look what I found" trailers that pop up here. None the less, the same basic questions about floor, frame, axles, brakes, .... all apply.

=====

Is the use scenario "fixed location"? If so things like brakes and axles really are not that big a deal. You would likely block it up in place and build a skirt around the bottom of the trailer. Doing so might also allow you to do some tricks with water and sewage.

You have water needs both for the toilet *and* for the kitchen. In our case, more water is used by the kitchen than the toilet. At least for me, living "totally dry" full time would get to be a very big hassle after a while.

As mentioned above, winter living in a "dwelling" with 1" thick metal walls is a challenge. Supplemental heat will be needed. The cost of running all that heating will not be minor. Dealing with the condensation will (likely) be done over many months.

Mobile or fixed, you are going to need a place to park this beast. You will need power to it and that involves a "custom" box to plug into. I'd put in a water line and a pipe to the owner's sewage setup at the same time. Even out of town, this *might* require a permit. You may also find that simply parking (while living in the trailer) for 30+ days bumps into local regulations.

None of this is to suggest you don't do it !!! Recognize the challenges ahead and factor them into your planning. Work thing out up front rather than being in the middle of yet another hassle for months (or years ...).

Bob
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Old 07-09-2019, 10:03 AM   #8
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Victoria , British Columbia
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it looks like a nice unit for its age at a fair price ..... no rust visible ever as its aluminium!! I have a 1970 and it was prewired even then for the AC at the factory. I installed one in a couple of hours.
As mentioned above you will not need to worry about having a shower as the condensation in your climate will give you a constant shower in winter......LOL.
I think trying to live 12months in a climate like yours would get very old very quick.... I had a compost toilet many years ago in a house in the woods ....I was really glad after 5 years to get back to a flush and would never go back!
If you can talk to some people who are actually living near you full time in a trailer(no matter the brand)......good luck.
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Old 07-09-2019, 10:06 AM   #9
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1969 18' Caravel
Greenville , whereEverIroam
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yes and no and no

Yes this trailer, just by the visual condition is worth 9K.

No, that does not mean it does not need work. The floor could be soft or even rotted. You might have rear-end separation (search the forum for these topics and how to fix them)

Worse case: shell-off frame fixing and floor replacement.

Next issue, full time living through the winter in Michigan, or anywhere North of the 30th Parallel. Lots of folks here cautioning against it. Some have done it ONCE, they usually don't a second time.

Picture a winter day living in a metal shed with a blanket hung on the wall for insulation and that it what an Airstream is like in the winter, only with wet walls from all the condensation. The single pane windows will have water streaming off of them constantly. The heater will run constantly, but you will still be cold. The cost of heating alone will exceed the cost of renting a warmer one-bedroom apartment. What plan do you have when the propane tanks run out at 11PM on a Saturday night in a snow storm?

Hope this helps.
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Old 07-09-2019, 10:39 AM   #10
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1966 26' Overlander
San Luis Obispo , California
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Overlander?

I agree, it looks like a 26' Overlander to me. My 1966 Overlander is about 23' in the body and 26' overall. Good luck!
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Old 07-09-2019, 11:11 AM   #11
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1988 25' Excella
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I like the trailer and it’s apparent condition. I would not want to live in it for a winter. You will need hookups and a large propane tank.
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Old 07-09-2019, 11:43 AM   #12
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Fair price. Nice trailer. Bad living plan though.
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Old 07-09-2019, 11:50 AM   #13
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1973 25' Tradewind
Fullerton , California
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This is a Land Yacht for sure. Middle bed turns into a couch and the front couch turns into a bed. Check to see if it has an Arctic Package which includes double paned windows. We had a ‘74 and sold it for $6k
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Old 07-09-2019, 12:26 PM   #14
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This fellow says that he lives in Wyoming, MI --- Michigan --- near Grand Rapids. Like the states of Montana or Wyoming, I imagine Michigan, too, gets cold in the winter, and living then in this (or any other) trailer, no matter its preparation, would be problematic.
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Old 07-09-2019, 02:22 PM   #15
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Mooresville , Indiana
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Ask for a photo of the VIN number on the plate near the door. The VIN number will tell you what year and floorplan it has. Then use this link to decode the VIN



https://vintageairstreamclub.com//wp..._1959-1979.pdf


Damon
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Old 07-09-2019, 02:24 PM   #16
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From the photos it looks unrestored. Hard to tell from the photo it looks like the trailer may be sitting low on the axles. If they are the original axles almost a guarantee they need to be replaced. The upholstery also looks like it needs replacement. Some of the formica is msmatched. If the appliances are original they need good examination. If it has a Suburban NS 28 furnace that model was recalled and cannot be fixed. I still have the original fridge in my 71 and it is still going strong. I did have to also replace the hot water heater. Find out if the layout is for 2 twin beds or 2 gauchos (one in front and one in back) The 2 gauchos is what I have in my 71 and I like it a lot better than 2 twins. $9000 sounds a bit high to me based on the photos. I think more like 7K.
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Old 07-09-2019, 04:13 PM   #17
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Long Island , New York
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryoukoe View Post
. . .
Thank you so much!
Welcome to the forum!

You need to inspect this trailer in person IMO, to determine:

-- water damage rot
-- floor rot
-- frame rust/rot
-- condition of all appliances, plumbing, electric, etc.
-- presence of rodent nests/excrement re: Hantavirus
-- how does it smell inside?
-- Etc. etc.

On the Portal page [grey tab at top left]:

http://www.airforums.com/

. . . you can fill out the form on the right edge of the page to find a local inspector.

Good luck!

Peter

PS -- "Hantavirus" search results here:

https://www.google.com/search?q=Hant...com&gws_rd=ssl

Nothing to joke about!






--
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Old 07-09-2019, 10:03 PM   #18
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High River , Alberta
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The body style is 1969+. My guess is that it is a 25’ Tradewind, 1969 to about 1972.
I agree; it looks good for the age. Interior seems all original.
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Old 07-10-2019, 06:08 AM   #19
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My 1966 came from a similar part of Michigan, and that area is definitely part of the salt the road and rust the frame belt of the US.

The interior looks good, and if you need to install an AC it should be wired for it, or possible to hide a wire run if the original wiring is not in good shape. If the rest of the frame is good, it is worth $9K.

The frame is a big IF. There is sure to be floor rot, likely around the entry door and bathroom, just a question of how much and if it damaged the frame.

Inspect the frame very closely. There are frequently significant rust, rot and cracking issues right behind the axles in the main longitudinal frame rails. Check underneath the bathroom and all around the rear of the trailer for the condition of the frame that might indicate any damage to the frame rail connection to the bumper, any crossmembers, or the brackets that hold up the tanks. These are all typical areas for rust issues that are serious enough to require major repairs. The entry step is also typical. With frame issues, there are often stress points visible on the interior where the top of bulkheads meet the ceiling.

The torsion axles are also likely sagged out, but that can be shelved as an issue if you are not travelling much.

Good luck!
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Old 07-10-2019, 06:42 AM   #20
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Hi

Another wrinkle to this:

Do you have the time / space / budget / gear to fix up the trailer? A lot of what you hear on the forum about "I did this" or "That was simple" does not go into the fact that a couple hundred man hours went into it. I'm very much guilty in that regard so no, that's not a knock on anybody.

Tearing everything (or almost everything) out of the trailer means having someplace dry and somewhat clean to store it. It's either a small barn or a pretty big garage for all that stuff. It *would* be nice to work on the trailer out of the rain. That doubles the space requirement.

I've been doing this and that for a lot of years. I have a reasonable inventory of tools and various bits and pieces. Doing things on the trailer *has* involved stocking up on stuff I simply didn't have. No one item cost a fortune. It has been a constant drip ... drip ...drip on the charge card.

Indeed if you have a couple of friends and nobody is very busy, you can bash something like this out in a month or three. Doing it solo while working two jobs with a deadline of end of August ..... yikes .....

Lots of variables ....

Bob
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