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Old 06-09-2020, 05:12 PM   #1
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Bumper Drag is a drag

Maybe I am the only one, but I suspect not (at least on AIR). Going in and out of a driveway, I had a 'bump and drag'. Luckily I didn't get stuck. It was a simple residential driveway with a very, very slight incline. But I caught the bumper/frame 'rub point'. It bent it slightly (was turning in to the driveway.

Since then, I feel like I have done something to the frame only because I see a slight 'dent', more of a depression, in the skin on both sides (but only one side got 'hit).

Was this depression there before? I don't know. The side of a 30' is not necessarily a flat mirror. It has slight 'waves' at the ribs. Nothing noticeable is loose or moved inside and I have looked in ridiculous detail. There is a small 'ripple' in the storage compartment box underneath where it joins the pan/frame. Still closes fine and doesn't leak.

What do you guys think? Am I the only one who has ever done this? If not, how bad do you think it is? What should I do other than feel bad, get a lift installed (already planning that), drink excessively?
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Old 06-09-2020, 07:09 PM   #2
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Bumper Drag is a drag

I’ve done that a few times on my 30’ before my lift. Those tabs don’t look all that bent. I wouldn’t sweat it.

Lift rocks.
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Old 06-21-2020, 03:20 PM   #3
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Don't sweat that bent tab.
No harm done.
Listen to Wulfraat about the lift.
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Old 06-21-2020, 04:00 PM   #4
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I did it psgr.side wrinkled little above rub rail, bumper, frame, side, all strait. Not bad but about 1/4 inch gap & about 1ft. 8in. inches long 1 in. up above rail. Have to look close to see. no leaks. Would like to install lift but have axis axles, not dexter. Has any one installed lift this brand axle. pur. from Colin Hyde. Bill
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Old 07-30-2020, 01:08 PM   #5
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My bumper rub points are almost completely flat from dragging the ass end over stuff. I wouldn’t sweat it.
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Old 07-30-2020, 01:46 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LilPeanut View Post
Maybe I am the only one, but I suspect not (at least on AIR). Going in and out of a driveway, I had a 'bump and drag'. Luckily I didn't get stuck. It was a simple residential driveway with a very, very slight incline. But I caught the bumper/frame 'rub point'. It bent it slightly (was turning in to the driveway.

Since then, I feel like I have done something to the frame only because I see a slight 'dent', more of a depression, in the skin on both sides (but only one side got 'hit).

Was this depression there before? I don't know. The side of a 30' is not necessarily a flat mirror. It has slight 'waves' at the ribs. Nothing noticeable is loose or moved inside and I have looked in ridiculous detail. There is a small 'ripple' in the storage compartment box underneath where it joins the pan/frame. Still closes fine and doesn't leak.

What do you guys think? Am I the only one who has ever done this? If not, how bad do you think it is? What should I do other than feel bad, get a lift installed (already planning that), drink excessively?
Not sure folks are seeing the photos well.



Here they are:





Are these two dimples in similar fore/aft locations? Looks that way IMO.

That might indicate that the frame DID flex a little, but hopefully there was no permanent damage, other than these two dimples. I would crawl under the trailer, and inspect the belly pan carefully in the same fore/aft location -- any buckling down there might confirm some frame flex.

More expert folks might have better feedback. Do you have any older photos which might show these dimples as pre-existing?

Happy trails,
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Old 07-30-2020, 03:32 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by wulfraat View Post
I’ve done that a few times on my 30’ before my lift. Those tabs don’t look all that bent. I wouldn’t sweat it.

Lift rocks.
How about those two dimples in my recent post?
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Old 07-30-2020, 04:54 PM   #8
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Like I said, I’ve nearly flattened mine; on both sides. See photo. Pardon the mess, in middle of repairing a floor leak. I also included a photo of the side of my trailer for comparison.
Even if you did tweak the shell, that area with the dimples would be in tension and the roof would be in compression. Any dimples would show up near the roof, not low on the trailer. Your trailer is fine.
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Old 07-31-2020, 12:16 AM   #9
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Those skids bend fairly easily. I tweaked them more than once, and to a greater degree than yours, with our previous 2018 30' Classic. There's a lot of trailer hanging out behind the rear axle and contact like you experienced kind of goes with the territory, so don't feel badly.

The impact had to have been fairly minor given the small amount of deflection in the skid and the dimples look to be at least 5 or 6 feet ahead of the bumper. I don't see any way that a minor hit like the one you experienced could cause damage that far forward on the trailer.
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Old 07-31-2020, 12:41 AM   #10
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Those skids bend fairly easily. I tweaked them more than once, and to a greater degree than yours, with our previous 2018 30' Classic. There's a lot of trailer hanging out behind the rear axle and contact like you experienced kind of goes with the territory, so don't feel badly.

The impact had to have been fairly minor given the small amount of deflection in the skid and the dimples look to be at least 5 or 6 feet ahead of the bumper. I don't see any way that a minor hit like the one you experienced could cause damage that far forward on the trailer.
That was my first reaction too, but the 30' trailer is a pretty long "lever" [as you recognize], so maybe even a minor hit, that far back, could cause some frame flex up by the axles? Remember that "rear end sag" took many years to diagnose properly, didn't it?

When the 30' Classic was designed and first manufactured, did Airstream use an old ~28' frame design, and lengthen it, thinking, "Two more feet won't hurt, will it?"



How about you other 30'-ers? Anything similar?

Happy trails,
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Old 07-31-2020, 05:44 AM   #11
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I've dragged tail several times. No bending of skids nor frame. Did pop the lower left trunk door frame weld through.
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Old 07-31-2020, 03:00 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OTRA15 View Post
That was my first reaction too, but the 30' trailer is a pretty long "lever" [as you recognize], so maybe even a minor hit, that far back, could cause some frame flex up by the axles? Remember that "rear end sag" took many years to diagnose properly, didn't it?

When the 30' Classic was designed and first manufactured, did Airstream use an old ~28' frame design, and lengthen it, thinking, "Two more feet won't hurt, will it?"



How about you other 30'-ers? Anything similar?

Happy trails,
Well Peter, I wouldn't rule anything out but I whacked those rear skids on my 2018 Classic 30 much more severely than the OP did (turned one 90 degrees) and never saw any visible signs of damage elsewhere. If the relatively minor hit the OP sustained somehow caused the frame to flex enough to cause those dimples, he was very unlucky.

Will await reports from others with interest.

Cheers.
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Old 07-31-2020, 06:02 PM   #13
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IMO, those dimples and waves are 100% normal and have existed on mine since day 1.
They even change with sun load in a given day.
Look at an old airplane. They ar anything but smooth and consistent throughout their body.
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Old 07-31-2020, 07:59 PM   #14
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Look for a 'suction cup' dent puller.. a small one. Use it over the 'dents'. If the vacuum holds, the rivet is probably tight...

Our 34' has many of those 'stretch marks' on panels.. The rear 'skid' panels have some drag marks.. but not bent... thankfully.

So, when transitioning a deep rise like that driveway, build up some wood blocks.. some way to fill in the low spot.. Next, try to go straight, not turning..

Compare previous pictures of your AS....

If you have a difference from side to side at the bumper or a horizontal crease starting above the beltline.. or if the beltline is puling away from the shell... need further investigation.
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Old 07-31-2020, 08:02 PM   #15
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Also when exiting wide drives, like gas stations, traverse them at a narrow angle, as much as possible.
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Old 08-01-2020, 07:02 AM   #16
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Don't intend to derail this topic, but although I've had the rear skids hit the ground on my AS I've had more of a problem with the front. Not the front of the AS, but the weight distribution bars in front of it scrapping the pavement:
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It got to the point where I'd ordered a replacement set of U-bolts and nuts for the Blue Ox WD to secure the chains to the bars. But then I installed the Dexter lift kit to raise the trailer about 2˝". No more dragging front or rear.
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Old 08-01-2020, 09:03 AM   #17
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. . .
What do you guys think?
. . .
OP are you still monitoring this thread from back in June? Did you get any other feedback about those dimples in the trailer sides?

Thanks and have a good weekend.
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