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Old 01-07-2009, 01:14 AM   #1
Augie R.
1960 22' Safari
carlsbad , California
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 73
Blog Entries: 1
Major floor problems

Hi there folks,
Wow so I had some rot started to invistigate and what I found was not pretty. I was planning on gutting the inside and and redoing the ply wood flooring before I leave on my trip back to CA. from FL. Since I found the mess underneath I'm woried I might not be ale to tow my AS home I wonder can I tow it without a belly skin? if the floor is put back or what if belly skin is not entirely secured (like missing some rivets here and there) will it fly off while I'm towing it? Anyway can't worry to much I guess.....I'll work on the imediate are some pics....

Oh I almost forgot..Any suggestions on where to get the C channel for replacing the rotted out sections ?
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Old 01-07-2009, 05:10 AM   #2
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1962 19' Globetrotter
1963 19' Globetrotter
1961 19' Globetrotter
Wheat Ridge , Colorado
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 624
Images: 2
If I was in your Shoes... Or ROT... I would not try a cross country trek with this trailer!!!! Many would back me up that there is little if anything holding the shell on the frame when there is this much rot! Trailer your trailer home and do it right! Furthermore, if not done right to will put further wear and tear on the shell, pop rivits, not to mention risk of a aluminum can on the side of the road! Sorry if I sound so "to the point" I just dont want to see you lose everything!

Vin...(Home of the NO rot trailer)
Wheat Ridge, Colorado
WBCCI # 1962
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Old 01-07-2009, 05:11 AM   #3
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2002 25' Safari
Dewey , Arizona
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 14,645
Images: 62
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The picture shows what appears to be major frame damage. It looks like the two beams that run from the hitch to the rear have rusted away in several areas. If the frame is in fact missing sections, I would not tow the trailer across the country.


Wally Byam Airstream Club 7513
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Old 01-07-2009, 08:26 AM   #4
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1984 29' Sovereign
Savannah , Missouri
Join Date: Apr 2002
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I agree Richard..
Depending on your timeline, it might behove you to consider having it trailered back on a flatbed.
I would considered this to be the safest way..

Good luck on your project~!
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Old 01-07-2009, 08:54 AM   #5
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1994 30' Excella
alexandria , Kentucky
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 2,065
Images: 3
From the looks of this frame - your better off having a new one duplicated.

To answer your other questions. I would rivet the belly pan back into place as good as you can. I would hate to see the wind get ahold of the sheet of aluminum and rip it from the trailer, causing more damage or possibly flying off into another automobile.

I would make sure the shell is secured to what's left of the frame, buy a cheap tandem axle utility trailer, make your journey and resell the utility trailer when you arrive at your destination.


If you could find any part of the frame that was solid you could temporarily weld a couple of stringers along the top of the original frame to strengthen it up enough to get you cross country.
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Old 01-07-2009, 01:26 PM   #6
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1967 26' Overlander
Huntsville , Alabama
Join Date: Dec 2003
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Need another picture

For towing, it really doesn't matter how the back section of the frame looks. If you think about the dynamics of towing, stresses start at the coupler and end at the axles.

Airstreams are of a uni-body design; the shell & frame work together. Believe it or not, the shell is stiffer than the frame. The aft frame is there to support your stuff, and there does not appear to be any stuff in your Airstream. If the C-channels forward of the axle are in reasonable shape, towing is possible.

Obviously, reattach or remove the belly skin. Foremost for the people behind you, but that skin ain't cheap either.

Towing on a flatbed trailer sounds good, but all the vibration and wind dynamics of a trip from AL to CA will still be there. Plus, if the Airstream's forward frame survives being winched onto a trailer, it is probably strong enough to be towed.

I say, "Inspect your forward C-channels, tires, bearings, coupler, belly skin, and lights and proceed accordingly".

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