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Old 02-02-2011, 08:26 AM   #1
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Chester , Vermont
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Opinions requested: '60 Tradewind

Hi! I'm new to this, looking to purchase my first Airstream with the goal of being road-ready by July 2011. My "must-have's" are less than 30', twin beds (would love to have bunks too), and in good condition with all working systems OR a reasonable renovation (which I will have done by professionals) to keep the total price below about 12K if possible. I like the look of the older models, '60s-'70s era. I'm a sucker for the retro look.

Here's where I'd like an opinion: I have been talking with a guy who does restorations and started on a 24' 1960 Tradewind with mid-twins and a curbside bunk, with an unusual window arrangement to accomodate that bunk. Perfect! The interior is removed and not put back in. Here's what is done: repaired damaged skins where there was a blow-out, rebuilt frame front to back, plywood floor and pergo over all, new windows and rubbers, zolotone interior, new wiring and lights on outside, polished once, insulation replaced on lower part (higher up was fine), axle is old-style surge brakes and will need replacement, has fixtures and appliances (not installed), interior is complete but dated and owner recommends completely replacing this (as there is damage where things were hung up, and it is original and not in great shape) using original parts as template for a cabinet maker to reproduce. He says it needs modern "pex tubing" as old copper plumbing was leaky and this can be done as interior goes back in. Also needs belly pan after all installed. He thinks this can all be done for 8-10K if hired out.

Questions: without seeing it, can anyone estimate how much this is worth, in it's current condition, ballpark? The seller seems to really know his airstreams and I trust him, but does the information above all sound like it's on the up and up? Opinions on the model? Has anyone seen this model with a curbside bunk? I want something that will be functional for our family of 4 as well as staying true to the Airstream look and feel, is it better to keep the original plumbing fixtures or go new (I know this is subjective, I'd love to hear opinions). We never used the oven in our last (modern) RV, but used the sink, fridge, and microwave; is it reasonable to install just those parts of the kitchen and leave a little more space? Thanks for any and all opinions and input.
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:34 AM   #2
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1965 22' Safari
Vassar , Michigan
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 848
Images: 6
A 60 TW is a great trailer. Just to give you something to compare we purchased our 22' 1965 Safari for $2500. Skin in pretty good shape. Had the belly pan. Copper plumbing leaked. Fresh tank leaked. Fridge shot. Stove very rusty. Cushions needed replacing. Windows needed gaskets. Furnace shot. Water pump shot. No awnings. Axle shot. Tires bad. And the list goes on. On the good side the AC had been replaced and worked very well. The bathroom was in very good shape. All of the cabinetry was very good and had not been varnished or painted. We replaced everything that did not work with new. We painted the interior walls, darkened all the windows and added new gaskets. Got rid of the old oven and replaced it with more cabinet doors for added storage. New counter top with stainless cooktop and single sink. New cushions, new carpet, Hunter Douglas blinds for all windows. lightly sanded all cabinets and applied Red Mahagony Watco oil. New FW tank, new water pump, new water heater, fixed leaks so still have the copper pipes. New fridge, 3 new Life Line batteries, new polished propane tanks, new axle w/new wheels and tires. Elect. jack. Polished entire trailer and installed new Zip Dee awnings all the way around. We kept all invoices so we could establish an agreed price for insurance purposes. We have a bit over $12,000.00 in new equipment, parts & materials. With the purchase price of 2500 we got an agreed Insurance price of $15000.00. You can see before and after pics. Non of these figures include any labor. Some of our biggest costs were - Awnings, fridge, axle w/wheels & tires and Life Line batteries.

I think you might have a pretty good deal. Best of luck.
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:46 AM   #3
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1956 22' Flying Cloud
1953 32' Liner
1955 22' Safari
Valley View , Texas
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It is still a BIG project

Whether you want to admit it or is still a major project. It does sound like all the big items are done....better recheck the items and the work quality...are the appliances old or new? An entire water system? an entire electrical system (outside of wiring)..tanks? fixtures? Do a complete inventory...objectively...and DO NOT FORGET.TIME AND LABOR...both yours and hired. If its so close to completion why did not the previous owner finish it? This is a good time of the year to find a completed Vintage at a price less than what you could do it for yourself. All that said.....if the price is right and you can get the work will be on the road this summer.
"If it can't be reduced, reused, repaired, rebuilt, refurbished, refinished, resold, recycled or composted
then it should be restricted, redesigned or removed from production."
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:48 AM   #4
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1956 22' Flying Cloud
Durango , Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: 1975 25' Tradewind
Posts: 3,480
Images: 14
It sounds all very good to me - it sound like he has done everything you are supposed to do - I would quiz his a bit on his frame and floor repair to make sure that was done properly.

I don't think you are going to be in your price range though - I would imagine he is going to want to at least recover his costs - I'm sure at this point he has about 5-6k + whatever he paid for the trailer - excluding labor - and if he does a lot of these will probably want to get something for that.

I had the exact same experience as Tim above - bought for 2500 and have at least 15 in mine.

So not trying to discourage you - it sounds like you found a good one and sounds like it will be worth it....

Ken J.
1956 Flying Cloud
Founder :
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:24 AM   #5
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Chester , Vermont
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Thanks for all the input! I think that you all are right about the cost and time. More research leads me to believe that it is probably better to start with one in good working order and nice condition, rather than the unknown quantity of $$ and time that I'd invest in the unfinished trailer. BTW, the guy is moving and can't take all of his Airstreams with him, he has 3 in various states. Thanks!
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Old 02-02-2011, 11:01 AM   #6
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1974 31' Sovereign
Ottawa , ON
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 11,219
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I agree with all the above, and would add two more points:

1) He has his AS in an awkward condition to sell. No matter what he has invested, he won't get much more back than what Tim Kasten said: a couple of grand. How are your negotiating skills?

b. IMHO, the only way you would get that one back on the road for this summer is if you used the original interior. It was real wood in those days by the way, how bad can it be? Did you see it?

But as Melody said, it's a big job, and just depends on you and how much time you can devote to it, and that's whether you do it all yourself or farm it out.

Good luck!
“Courage is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway.”
...John Wayne...........................
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Old 02-02-2011, 11:26 AM   #7
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1974 Argosy 26
Morrill , Nebraska
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I have put a lot of new in my Argosy. Totally remodeled the galley and dinette area and completed major changes in the bath. All new PEX plumbing, new range top, new sinks and faucets in bath and galley. New water heater, new converter, new toilet. Patched the floor and installed new carpet and flooring in bath. New shocks, new tires. Have not touched the berthing area and have $8K in it and completed all of the work myself.
Repaired the original refer, checked out the furnace which is OK and the original AC still works. If any of these crap out, it's big bucks to replace, could be another $2.5K to $3K if all need to be replaced. Axles will probable need to be replaced, that's another $1K.
If I were doing the work for someone else, I don't know how I could do it for less than $16K not counting the cost of replacing the stuff that still works..
I would think if you paid someone to do this work and make all of the necessary repairs, you would be looking a $20K for labor, parts and materials.
I have a few photos on my blog.
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Old 09-11-2013, 08:47 AM   #8
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mattydale , New York
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Originally Posted by saranesler View Post
Thanks for all the input! I think that you all are right about the cost and time. More research leads me to believe that it is probably better to start with one in good working order and nice condition, rather than the unknown quantity of $$ and time that I'd invest in the unfinished trailer. BTW, the guy is moving and can't take all of his Airstreams with him, he has 3 in various states. Thanks!

I know this thread is old, but what was he asking for it in the condition it was being sold in?


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