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Old 11-22-2005, 01:27 PM   #101
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Originally Posted by JPAIRSTREAM


JPO, would it be possible to repost these pictures. I'm trying to decide if I need to use the elephant ears on my curretcly exposed frame before I button everything up. Thanks for the help and happy turkey day.

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Old 11-22-2005, 04:59 PM   #102
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Hi Gordon. Your Airstream will be ever so thankful, when you have it's running gear properly balanced.
I predicted that there are still those that "don't believe." That's fine with us, as it's their money and equipment that suffers, not ours.
Laws of physics don't apply to some non-believers, or so it seems.


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Calm down Andy, you'll burst a blood vessel. (Or balance yourself by applying one martini.)

I noticed that stuff was jiggling around more recently. So like the smart woman I am I checked my nuts (lug nuts) and air pressure. Then I went to my local service guy and got him to balance the whole assembly. Showed him YOUR website on my laptop when he said he didn't think it needed it. Lo and behold I must have dropped a weight from the rim because it was rather badly out of balance on one side. Now when I tow, the books stay on my nightstand and my sliding doors on the overhead cabinets stay in their tracks.

I'm not going to admit to anyone that I think I put Tin Lizzie out of balance in a parking lot, by wearing flat spots on the wheels while trying to teach myself how to back up!

P.
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Old 11-22-2005, 05:41 PM   #103
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Originally Posted by volvophile
Has anyone been able to find an automotive (truck) drum that fits the A/S brakes?
I'm thinking since the automotive drums are theoreticly ballanced from the factory, that would take care of 75% of the assemblys ballance problem.
Might be cheaper to if thier listed for, say, a '79 ford, rather than an airstream. (anyone whose used chevy part numbers to buy parts for thier corvette know what I'm talking about there)
Electric trailer brake drums have a second machined surface that is behind the face of the drum, where the magnet rides when you apply the brakes. No such luck on automotive drums....
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Old 11-26-2005, 02:26 PM   #104
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Bump....

Hey guys, does anybody out there have photos of the so-called "elephant ears" described above to correct for rear end sag? I've looked thru about a dozen of the 18 threads that mention this but I have yet to find pictures. I've got mine completely apart and would like to install these, but I just need more info. As always, thanks for the advice.

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Old 11-26-2005, 03:07 PM   #105
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim & Susan
Bump....

Hey guys, does anybody out there have photos of the so-called "elephant ears" described above to correct for rear end sag? I've looked thru about a dozen of the 18 threads that mention this but I have yet to find pictures. I've got mine completely apart and would like to install these, but I just need more info. As always, thanks for the advice.

Jim
Jim,
Look in the Airstream Photos for an album by "Jalina" she did an excellent job of documenting the process.

Aaron
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Old 11-26-2005, 03:20 PM   #106
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim & Susan
Bump....

Hey guys, does anybody out there have photos of the so-called "elephant ears" described above to correct for rear end sag?
Jim
I have been trying to understand what is meant by elephant ears also and this is what I have come up with. The elephant ear is not the repair. It is the patch placed over the skin cut to make the repair. I found this diagram that shows what they look like.
http://www.airforums.com/photo...&searchid=1451
I also read that some owners installed reflectors over the cut skin so that it would look more "natural". This information is from what I have been able to find and I have no first hand information about these repairs. Anyone who has done this proceedure, please jump in and let us know.
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Old 11-26-2005, 04:00 PM   #107
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AZ, I've seen this before. This seems to be a "patch" rather than a cure. From what I understand, there is a metal kit that can be ordered from Airstream that is actually welded under the floor to the frame, just behind the axles some place that stiffens the frame itself. I'm gonna look at that other thread mentioned above....be back in a minute....


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Old 11-26-2005, 04:56 PM   #108
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OK, I've had a chance to view all of Jalina's pic's now (I'm at the in-laws on dial up, so it takes a while). I would classify what Jalina did as a repair because of excessive vibration or "wiggle" as the trailer goes down the road.

Maybe I'm imagining things here, but I thought there was a steel kit that could be welded into the frame behind the axles that would dampen the vibration and "wiggle" that would prevent the problems Jalina has had as well as the sag inherent in the heavy rear areas of the trailers of this era.

I'll keep looking. As always, thanks for the tips!
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Old 11-26-2005, 05:32 PM   #109
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Have you seen the Airstream service bulletin to correct the sag?
Attached Files
File Type: pdf AS Sag.pdf (727.0 KB, 276 views)
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Old 11-26-2005, 05:51 PM   #110
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The Airstream bulletin, is out of date by almost 40 years.

The steel frame kit, is designed to beef up the frame, for the axles, "ONLY".

It "DOES NOT" and will not correct or prevent rear end separation.

It does not add any additional carrying capacity for the chassis.

It does not correct bad axles.

It does not eliminate the need for shocks.

It does not eliminate the need for running gear balance.

It does not make the trailer ride any better.

But, "it does", add strength to the frame so that the frame will not buckle or bend AT THE AXLE MOUNTING PLATE, ONLY. NOTHING MORE.

Elephant ears, is a sheet metal patch at the inside lower corners of the rear quarter panels, at the rear plate junction.

That patch covers up the "INCORRECT" way to repair rear end separation.

Most of the time, when rear end separation has taken place, the rear floor channel has cracked in half, in more than two places.

The proper repair is easy.

1. Remove the rear quarter panels.
2. Remove most of the rivets from the rear plate, so that you can curl the rear plate upward, out of the way.
3. Observe the damage to the floor channel. Remove the channel, have it welded back together.
4. Add an additional gusset the outside of the frame, under the floor, for additional bolts.
5. Jack up the frame to it's correct position.
6. Assuming the floor is ok, and that the rear "hold down plate" is ok, reinstall the floor channel, with new 1/4" grade 5 or better hardware. Drill additional mounting holes through the gussets that were added. Use washers under the bolt heads and at the bottom of the plywood floor. Add steel plates above the floor channel at the frame and gusset areas, that will spread out the stresses.
7. Add additional rivets to hold the "INSIDE" quarter panels with greater strength.
8. Reinstall the quarter panels and rear plate, with olympic rivets at the sides and top. Use plenty of Vulkem sealer between the seams.
9. Use 3/16" pop rivets at the bottom of the quarter panels.
10. Reinstall the rub rail molding.

The above is a professional way to correct the rear end separation problem, and, at the same time, gives the rear shell to frame attachment considerable additional strength. Done properly, no evidence of repairs can be seen, other than the olympic rivets.

Keep the bikes or whatever, "OFF" the bumper.

The elephant ears is a dead give away of "short changed" repairs.

The axle beef up kit, won't do a thing for the above repairs.

Andy
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Old 11-26-2005, 06:29 PM   #111
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Andy,
Thanks for jumping in with a very informative post!
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Old 11-26-2005, 08:47 PM   #112
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Question tire balancer

Andy,

I just went to InlandRV web site. I did not see a wheel balancer.
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Old 11-27-2005, 01:49 AM   #113
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uucal
I just went to InlandRV web site. I did not see a wheel balancer.
It's in the article section. http://www.inlandrv.com/articles/wheel-balancing/
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Old 11-27-2005, 08:41 PM   #114
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Smile Inland balancer

Thanks for your reply. I must confess to going back later to the site after seeing another ref. to the articles. It looks pretty impressive, but not sure if my 2003 model needs this much attention. But after reading comments about checking wheel balance only maybe I should hook up and get them checked before heading out in January for warmer climes
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Old 11-28-2005, 09:57 AM   #115
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Inland Andy, Thanks again for the good info.

It seems part of my problem is what I am calling things. The term "elephant ears" apparently refers to the "cut outs" used in the repair to re-attach the shell to the frame in the rear area around the trunk door.

I suppose I have misunderstood that there was some type of kit available to beef up the steel frame itself aft of the axles.

This portion of the frame (aft of the axles) is the weakest part of the frame. I have the floor completely removed from mine and am in the process of repairing the frame (sandblasting and POR-15 all over). If you reach up and "shake" the trailer (by pushing or pulling on a frame member or such), the frame and shell forward of the rear axle remains steady. Aft of the axles, the whole assembly (shell & frame) wiggles back and forth, as if it were unstable.

I guess I'm looking for a way to make the rear of the trailer more rigid; a way to eleminate or at least reduce the amount of movement on the rear of the coach.

Again, thanks for the help.

Jim
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Old 11-28-2005, 03:28 PM   #116
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Jim & Susan.

Your correct, about the elephant ear patch.

Beefing up the frame, is not a good idea. First of all, it will add weight to the trailer, rearward of the axle. BAD idea, since that will also reduced the tongue weight.

What you can do, it simple and easy, plus cheap!!!

Remember the basic!!!!

The frame DOES NOT hold up the shell. Instead, "the shell holds up the frame".

Increase the number of bolts in the rear floor channel, at least double, if not triple. Remember to use steel plates at the top of the channel, underneath each bolt, to better redistribute weight. If the original floor channel was held in place with csrews, then replace all of them with 1/4 inch bolts, washers and lock washers.

Add additional rivets to the interior rear quarter panels, 3/16" preferred, especially at the bottom.

Remove the rear rub rail. Add additional 3/16 rivets from the front of the rear quarter panel at the bottom, through the rear plate, and then through the bottom of the other rear quarter panel.

Add the additional gusset outward of the frame as well.

Use plenty of rivets, such as every 3 inches.

That operation, adds considerable strength to the rear shell, which takes care of the problem for you, without adding any appreciable weight, or changing the tongue weight.

Easy enough?

Andy
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Old 11-29-2005, 06:49 PM   #117
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In
...Increase the number of bolts in the rear floor channel, at least double, if not triple. Remember to use steel plates at the top of the channel, underneath each bolt, to better redistribute weight. If the original floor channel was held in place with csrews, then replace all of them with 1/4 inch bolts, washers and lock washers...

Andy
Andy,

I am in the process of replacing the floor in my 1954 Double Door Liner. How far apart would you place the 1/4" bolts?

I am considering fender washers on top above the channel and steel plates underneath the floor to prevent any pull through of the bolts. Any comments?

Bill
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Old 11-30-2005, 09:28 AM   #118
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Bill.

That's almost an "over kill".

Flush self tapping screws have worked for over 50 years.

Every 6 inches would be outstanding.

Andy
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Old 12-06-2005, 11:02 AM   #119
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how well are disk brakes ballanced?

I'm currently looking at a 31' with Disk brakes.
I'm thinking the disks would likely to be more ballanced than the drums, seeing as how the entire spinning part is machined.
Any thoughts on this?
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Old 12-06-2005, 04:13 PM   #120
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Old style disk brakes were terrible to maintain and not reliable. No repair parts currently available. I have a set I took of my 77. Final straw caliper holding frames welds cracked. I have used Kelsy Hayes and Dexter electrics since I took the disks off. Do not know about the new ones.
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