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Old 01-23-2011, 09:21 PM   #1
3 Rivet Member
1977 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre
deland , Florida
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 101
newb frame rot question

hey guys first off i love this website. i have learned a lot and since joining i have turned down a few airstreams from the knowledge i have learned on here

i went to look at a 66 safari that i really like. the belly pan is almost perfect so of course i can not see any of the frame under it. the frame in the back and in the front of the trailer look fine. the frame by the axles look good with the exeption of some rust scale starting but no rust through. the only area i found was where the step is. the one brace that the step slides on twords the front of the trailer had some rust on it and the main frame rail that that is welded to had a rust hole about 1 1/2 inch high by 3 inches long. i forgot to bring my camera so i could not take pics. the floor was also rotted above that area and it seemed like that area only. im thinking maybe a window was open or something for some time there. anyway is that a common area that rust starts at? or is that a sure sighn that the whole frame has rust holes in it? like i said the floor was only soft in that area that i can see. i didnt pull the couch out or the shelving out so i dont know about under those areas. also im located in florida and i belive the trailer has spent its life here. any help would be apreciated
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Old 01-23-2011, 09:29 PM   #2
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 2,601
The slots in the outriggers for the steps to slide in and out are usuallly a point of entry for water. Once the water gets in there the fiberglass insulation holds it and will actually wick up and saturate the floor causing the floor rot. Check the rivets in the belly pan if there is any serious corrosion of the frame usually they will show signs of it there. I would suspect that if it did indeed spend it's whole life in Fl that a lot of corrosion will be there due to the salty air. Check the perimeter of the floor against the walls that is where you will find the most serious floor rot.
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Old 01-23-2011, 10:18 PM   #3
3 Rivet Member
1977 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre
deland , Florida
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 101
im not to worried about the wood, im more concerned about the frame. as for the salt air in florida that is only true if you live on the beach once you are inland a few miles the salt dosent affect as much as most people think.
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Old 01-23-2011, 10:44 PM   #4
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1958 22' Flying Cloud
Folsom , California
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 468
Images: 4
If you have plans to restore the trailer, and will be taking the body off, fixing the frame is not as bad as one might think. The frame itself is a very simple design. When buying my second trailer, I was more concerned about the straightness of the body. To each his own I guess.
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Old 01-23-2011, 11:16 PM   #5
3 Rivet Member
1977 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre
deland , Florida
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 101
i dont want to get involved w taking the body off that is the concern to me. i dont mind having to drop the belly pan and fixing one or two rust spots i just dont want to get involved w replacing a entire frame. it sucks that the belly pan is perfect and cant get a good look at the rest of the frame
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Old 01-24-2011, 07:01 AM   #6
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1974 31' Sovereign
Ottawa , ON
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 11,219
Images: 25
Isn't the fact that the floor is rotten enough to show you that serious moisture has been into the "basement"? Remember, all Airstreams leak, it's only a matter of how much and for how long.

Unless you've got x-ray vision, you won't really know about rust on the frame until you look, so if you intend to buy it, be safe and budget on having to do a frame off restoration and a new floor.

Good luck with it!
“Courage is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway.”
...John Wayne...........................
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