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Old 11-08-2003, 04:29 AM   #1
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Port Elgin , Ontario
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Good Years?

After looking into new Airstreams this last summer I think I have decided that buying used may be a better option for myself. This is mainly due to a desire to modify the interior to my own specifications and to bring the Excella models to an acceptable price for me while still gaining their advantages.( I would most likely be looking for a 25' model.

Is there years/eras of the Airstreams that I should be avoiding and any that appear to be especially good? For instance I recently saw a post that late 90s AS had trouble with their clearcoat. I would likely want something within 10 years old however I would be open to older models if they have a high expectation of being a good performer.
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Old 11-08-2003, 05:13 AM   #2
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1975 31' Sovereign
1980 31' Excella II
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I wouldn't worry too much about specific years and problems. I would look for the unit that you want in the condition that is acceptable to you. We had made the decision that we wanted an AS but the new ones were out of price range. We felt we wanted something in the 22-27 ft range, Those are the hardest ones to find. I knew I wanted something between 1969 and 1985, I just like those the best. We ended up with a 1975 31' Sovereign. Not exactly the 25 footer we were looking for But this unit was in a condition that was acceptable to us, the price was what we were willing to pay. A very large factor in the condition of the unit will be the Previous Owner(s) and how well they took care of the unit. This will drive the price too. I have seen gently used, well cared for units from the late 60's that looked fantastic, as well as some units fromt he early 90's that looked like garbage because the PO's had never done anything to take care of them. FWIW Clear coat can be redone if necessary.

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Old 11-08-2003, 06:56 AM   #3
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Best years for an Airstream are 1936-2004
2003 GMC 2500HD 4X4 D/A Ext. Cab
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Old 11-08-2003, 08:36 AM   #4
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I agree

I agree with Aaron. Have some idea what you want, go after it with flexibility and find the best overall "package/unit" that fits Aaron's suggestions.
"would you rather have a mansion full of money or a trailer full of love?"

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Old 07-12-2007, 04:56 AM   #5
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. , AZ to Maine
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This thread while older, seems appropriate.
Having looked at the new trailers, drooled actually, compared to my unrestored treasure I wonder if there is some middle ground out there for me.
Do not want to hear about middle age sag, frame sag, or new trailer aluminum rust or cracks, just a cheap (relative term) quality Airstream.
Just looking for quality in a older model.
Is it late 80's early 90's?
Am I dreaming or just dilusional?

"Talk is cheap, Airstreams are expensive," Wally Byam.
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Old 07-12-2007, 07:46 AM   #6
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2004 30' Classic Slideout
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Propane Honda

Originally Posted by Pick
Best years for an Airstream are 1936-2004
Hey, PICK where and how did you get your Honda 2000 changed over to propane? richg
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Old 07-12-2007, 07:47 AM   #7
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Hailey , Idaho
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"Airstreams are like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get!"

If you purchase any travel trailer over 15 years old you need to be prepared for the possibility of significant repairs. You may get lucky or you may get unlucky and it's nearly impossible to cover all angles to ensure the trailer you are getting will be troublefree.

Shortly after I bought my Argosy my black tank broke and had to be replaced. There was practically no way anyone could have known that would happen. I believe it cost me around $500 to fix.

I don't have the time or patience to go through a thorough restoration like some people do. It's amazing what some people can do with one. So when I was looking for my unit I wanted it to be ready to camp in and if stuff broke I'd fix it as it happened.

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