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Old 05-29-2012, 04:02 PM   #1
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Preferred method for pulling shell from trailer

K...researched and see there are two options for pulling the shell off the trailer....
1) Make an A-frame., add some supports across to hold the shells shape and lift off...using a couple come-alongs.

2) Make supports (sawhorse like) and crib up from inside and raise the shell using jacks. sliding additional supports and rest on horses.

Pros/Cons???

Bruce
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Old 05-29-2012, 04:19 PM   #2
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I'm going with the A-Frame building them today in fact. I was going to do the other method but it looked to complicated with all the braces and jacks and then it would sit high of the ground and we have winds that could catch it.

Plus AS must have dropped it on the body from above. Because my end caps and bath tub don't fit out the door. So if it was good enough for them it ok by me.

this Thread has some good pics and you can use the A-frame to work on the frame of the trailer.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f36/...lly-89975.html
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Old 05-29-2012, 04:30 PM   #3
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One other method that I have seen on this forum, is lift with gantry's thru vent hole and 2x8 running along ceiling and utilizing straps around 2x8 thru vents.

I have tried any of these method, but I will need to decide shortly.
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Old 05-29-2012, 05:22 PM   #4
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Through the vent holes, thats what I'm building my A-frame/ Gantry's for. it's seems the easiest way.
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Old 05-29-2012, 05:42 PM   #5
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That's what I was leaning toward... because I think I can skip the channel removal, since mine are in great shape. Also think that when setting the shell back on...it being suspended may have advantages if adjustments are needed for final placement. Remember the internal bracing.. wanna keep things "square"...haha well in the same shape as it was before lifting off....
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Old 05-29-2012, 06:06 PM   #6
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Take a look at this http://www.airforums.com/forums/f36/...lly-89975.html

Seems his method did not cross brace interior, what does "y'all " think?
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Old 05-29-2012, 08:21 PM   #7
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Map man...I'm thinkin that I got 52 more rivets ( solid ones) to remove. Got to looking at things and it looks much simpler to have the floor mounted to the frame and then lower the shell back on. I'm running a 2x8 all the way across the top to be sure to catch the last rib (where the round starts) running a brace across the width of the trailer in a couple places....Better safe than sorry !!! I have seen the making video and they do just pick up the shell and put it on the floor. Hopefully get to the removal next week and will post pics...
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Old 05-29-2012, 08:33 PM   #8
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Lift the shell with your frames. Then, use the frames to lift, turn, rotisserie the frame. It is pure pleasure working on the bottom of your frame with it facing up.

Also, don't lift with come-alongs. They are for pulling only, and get sketchy supporting weight and especially when lowering. Besides, they take up a lot of space, which just means your frames have t be that much higher. Get a couple of 1 ton chain hoists from harbor freight with the 20% off coupon, and you won't regret it.
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Old 05-29-2012, 08:41 PM   #9
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Just finished the Gantry's here is a pic. Getting dark here. They are 12 feet tall and could be a foot or so shorter, but for now I thought better safe than sorry.
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Old 05-29-2012, 10:36 PM   #10
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A-frames and pulled a 31 footer thru the front and rear vents. Used about 5 ft of 4x4 to catch 2 ribs on each end with no bracing inside. With the HB 1 ton chain hoist. Really a slick way to pull the shell. Hope it goes back as easy.
I made Mine 16 ft tall almost too tall but I had enough chain in the hoist. I would think 12 ft. might be cutting it close.
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Old 05-30-2012, 08:05 AM   #11
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Purman--those are some pretty frames!

I think the ones I built were only 10 ft. tall. I was using threaded rods to lift the shell, which I thought was pretty stinkin' cleaver, and it worked fine, but was quite tedious running the shell down to the ground. The clearance using the 10' frames was so tight that I had to pull the trailer frame forward until the wheel wells were nearing the front of the shell, and then lower the back end of the shell, to tilt the front up enough to get the front of the shell to clear the wheel wells. You should be fine with 12'.

When I put mine back together, I will be using two 1-ton chain hoists. I will need to rig the interior lifting beam so that it accommodates the added length of the hoists in the rig-up.

good luck!
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Old 05-30-2012, 08:19 AM   #12
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*If* I had a cavernous shop or even a firm level pad the crane method would've been my first choice; and then I might've been able to work smarter on the frame too.

The only suggestion to making gantries is 1/2"~ plywood webbing to make little monoque box sections where cross-bracing is needed, increases the load bearing across fifty screws (and glue?) instead of a few nails/screws/bolts.
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Old 05-30-2012, 08:23 AM   #13
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Belegedhel-- thanks I basically copied yours Hope you didn't have a patent on them. yeah I'm going to start with the 1 ton hosts. My neighbors have some that I can borrow. I also used treated lumber as I will be keeping these around, as I will get other use for them on my hobby farm Also will be using them like you did to string up the frame to get the rust of and paint.
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Old 05-30-2012, 08:41 PM   #14
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Thanks Guys!!!! I'll be pickin up items this weekend and hopefully do the "raising" next weekend....have a GREAT n PRODUCTIVE WEEKEND!!!!

Bruce
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Old 07-23-2013, 08:26 PM   #15
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I just bought a 1970 Overlander and may need to lift the shell. This may be an obvious question, but did you remove all of the interior panels first to make it lighter, or did you keep them in place for frame rigidity?
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Old 07-23-2013, 08:54 PM   #16
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I had removed the entire interior, but not because of anything to do with the lift, just that my insulation was all full of mouse trails and other nasties. The shell is really pretty light, with or without the interior skins, certainly shouldn't stress your gantries, or tax your hoists.
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Old 07-24-2013, 08:44 AM   #17
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My concern was with flexing of the shell while sitting on the ground waiting for the frame to go back under it. I do plan to remove the interior skins at some point in the restoration, but didn't know if it should be prior to shell lift or after re-attachment of shell to frame.
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Old 07-24-2013, 09:47 AM   #18
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I wouldn't worry about the shell flexing while sitting on the ground. If you read enough posts, you will see that many people who pull the shell are convinced that there needs to be all kinds of cribbing/bracing interally. I could agree only if I am actually using that bracing to lift the shell, otherwise, I think it serves no purpose. The inner skins might add a little rigidity to the shell, but without the inner skins, it really isn't THAT flexible and flimsy.
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Old 07-25-2013, 07:16 AM   #19
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Last summer we pulled the shell on our 72 Safari. As others have said it was because of mice and tha fact that the floor was rotted in the front and back.
That said we chose the hoisting method. 2 - 1 ton hoist thru the front and back hatch attached to a 4x4. Used a 6 ton hoist strap from Harbor Freight wrappped around the 4x4.

Like you I was concerned that the shel would bow...so I did cut a couple of 2x4s to go across the shell nead the door and toward the back.
As for the rigging...12ft seams to be high enough to get all the work done...
ONE caution....most of the folks use a 4x4, as I did. When I was disassembling it one of the 4x4s broke. It looked to be from a knowt in the lumber that I didnt see. If I did again I would use doubled 2x6. Better yet Son in law suggested pallet rack as a possibility..but need to doulbe check the distances...
We raised and lowered the frame to the ground and moved the frames to the side to do the trailer frame restorations as well.
One not on flor replacement if you replace the channel that is bick riveted to the shell and you get it from Air Stream.... it is smaller as the newer trailers have thiner floors and you will need to router out that difference in the new floor...IF the original channels are good I wouldnt replace them.
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Old 07-25-2013, 08:43 AM   #20
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Quote:
When I was disassembling it one of the 4x4s broke (Debnw)
Pressure treated (PT) lumber is stored & shipped wet to prevent warping and splitting when nailed/screwed, and also so the deck/structure shrinks around the fasteners to make the entire assembly tighter & more stable.

Hidden flaws, burls or swoops of grain can pop apart on their own once the drying action gets fully in gear, especially buying the PT flavor-of-the-day from a big box store.

For structurally vital bits a private lumber yard that supplies the trades may be more expensive but usually has a better grade on hand and will provide their best if you explain where its going to be used...

Anyhow - Debnw & purman - great photos & thanks for sharing. Wish I'd gone the crane method, next time right?
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