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Old 11-05-2011, 05:11 PM   #201
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Hey Sandy,
Nice progress! I guess I'm not picturing what the problem with the wheel well is. The wheel well is sandwiched between the frame and the floor, then the outer portion is riveted to the exterior shell. I had to modify the new wheel wells, with a sort of extension. The channel you have a picture of is the double U/C floor channel. The wheel well isn't attached to this piece. You can purchase it from any Airstream dealer. Try ODMRV. They have to special order the channel. Here is their catalog listing.
As for the rear hold down plate, I'd use stainless steel or thicker aluminum.
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Old 11-05-2011, 05:18 PM   #202
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Thanks Top!

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Hey Sandy,
Nice progress! I guess I'm not picturing what the problem with the wheel well is. The wheel well is sandwiched between the frame and the floor, then the outer portion is riveted to the exterior shell. I had to modify the new wheel wells, with a sort of extension. The channel you have a picture of is the double U/C floor channel. The wheel well isn't attached to this piece. You can purchase it from any Airstream dealer. Try ODMRV. They have to special order the channel. Here is their catalog listing.
As for the rear hold down plate, I'd use stainless steel or thicker aluminum.
Thanks for the info Top,
I think I need an Airstream parts store in town for all of the stuff we are ending up ordering from faraway lands. The shipping ends up to be a large part of the purchase. At least it is still available anyway. Looks like another order going out from ND pretty soon.
Sandy
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Old 11-06-2011, 08:28 PM   #203
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Good luck with the wheel wells. I do not know if I need new ones or not. I intended to repair the ones I have with a plastic welder but the welder would not heat up. Why did you replace yours?

Everything is looking great.
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Old 11-06-2011, 08:54 PM   #204
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Plastic welder?

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Good luck with the wheel wells. I do not know if I need new ones or not. I intended to repair the ones I have with a plastic welder but the welder would not heat up. Why did you replace yours?

Everything is looking great.
Thanks for the interest and the comments...now I have to ask, what is a plastic welder? Never heard of that and these forums are great to learn new things. Just curious....

Our well wheels were broken-large crack on one and the other one had a galvanized metal patch on it from a PO. We got the new wheel wells awhile back and found they don't fit the original hardware that holds them to the shell. It was back to the drawing board on that one.

I think I may have found a source for the channel to replace the old stuff and hopefully get it to fit our new wheel wells. It will take awhile to get here. The ND winter will not wait that long and our shell is sitting outside still propped up on blocks like it has been for a year. We had hoped to have it back on the frame a long time ago. Progress is slow and some days it seems like we go backwards.

The good news is that I saw another small vintage AS today headed east in Bismarck. I held myself back from chasing it down and asking if I could take a look at it....and see if it was for sale .
Sandy
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Old 11-07-2011, 07:18 AM   #205
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I am curious why every project step involves the purchase of more tools?
Sandy

That's funny, we men always wondered why a new dress always required a new pair of shoes......
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Old 11-07-2011, 07:32 AM   #206
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Doesn't Bismarck have any metal fabricators? Back in the 80's I did business with a company in West Fargo that made farm equipment and did job work. Those guys could make about anything from metal. There were quite a few metal fabrication businesses in West Fargo. I wonder if your parts are closer to home than you thought.
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Old 11-07-2011, 05:52 PM   #207
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A plastic welder is just a heat gun with a small tip. You can use filler rods to rebuild pieces or you can repair cracks by just heating and massaging pieces back together with a metal rod.

Plastics are either thermo set or thermo plastic. You can only weld the thermo plastic type. I have not tested my wheel wells to see If they will weld. There is an inner and outer shell and one is black and the other tan. I think they Are different plastics as well.

My company purchased one for a job and it worked great. I was excited to use it but the heat element must have burnt out when it was used last. I have seen some wheel wells fabricated from sheet metal, I may do that.
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Old 11-07-2011, 07:19 PM   #208
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It is all clear now

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That's funny, we men always wondered why a new dress always required a new pair of shoes......
I think it is the same principle. This analogy makes a lot of sense to me now. I think we will have tons of new tools when this adventure if over. If it is ever over that is....
Sandy
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Old 11-07-2011, 07:21 PM   #209
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Good idea...

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Doesn't Bismarck have any metal fabricators? Back in the 80's I did business with a company in West Fargo that made farm equipment and did job work. Those guys could make about anything from metal. There were quite a few metal fabrication businesses in West Fargo. I wonder if your parts are closer to home than you thought.
Thanks Splitrock,
I did talk to a couple of people today so I am going to see what can be done locally. I will need all of the channel that holds the wheel wells down and enough channel for the entire skin to be replaced on the frame. Does anyone know how much channel I need to do a trailer this size?
Sandy
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Old 11-07-2011, 07:32 PM   #210
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Hmm...welding plastic

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A plastic welder is just a heat gun with a small tip. You can use filler rods to rebuild pieces or you can repair cracks by just heating and massaging pieces back together with a metal rod.

Plastics are either thermo set or thermo plastic. You can only weld the thermo plastic type. I have not tested my wheel wells to see If they will weld. There is an inner and outer shell and one is black and the other tan. I think they Are different plastics as well.

My company purchased one for a job and it worked great. I was excited to use it but the heat element must have burnt out when it was used last. I have seen some wheel wells fabricated from sheet metal, I may do that.
That is good to know. It is a learning adventure every day in this Airstream business. Our wheel wells were too wrecked to even try to repair and since we didn't know anything about plastic welding...too late. The good thing is now that we know about it, we might be able to use that on another project.

We also figured since we are basically rebuilding it from the ground up, we are going to do it right the first time. So that means we are spending a ton now in hopes we will enjoy this trailer for years and years.

The new outer wheel wells that we ordered online look good and my husband is going to try to build the inner wheel wells using aluminum. This is part of the reason he wants the spool gun for welding. I think he will use it for a number of things which might include building a cabinet to lock up my computer and phone so I can't find anymore Airstreams to buy.
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Old 11-07-2011, 07:59 PM   #211
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Thanks Splitrock,
I did talk to a couple of people today so I am going to see what can be done locally. I will need all of the channel that holds the wheel wells down and enough channel for the entire skin to be replaced on the frame. Does anyone know how much channel I need to do a trailer this size?
Sandy

There's a thread here somewhere where somebody made the channel and showed how it was done. Maybe do a url specific search on "channel".
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Old 11-07-2011, 10:29 PM   #212
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Hi Sandy
Not sure how much you will need but I made mine with a 36" metal break
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Old 11-08-2011, 06:04 AM   #213
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Do you buy a sheet?

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Hi Sandy
Not sure how much you will need but I made mine with a 36" metal break
Hey Marzboy!
I did remember your metal break but I don't know how you work them. I think my husband could figure it out but my biggest question is if what to buy for the raw material. Is it a sheet of aluminum that you cut into strips or do you buy strips and bend them ?

I would like to get one of these metal breaks because I can see they would be very handy. Especially if we want to use them on a couple of trailers....plus the one I haven't found yet . The shipping here would be atrocious so maybe I can find a used one. I did look at Ebay but they often specify local pickup or lots for shipping. I am also going to try to see if anyone around can make them for us. If not, I will have to order it premade and wait on that to arrive. Thanks for your input and keep posting pictures on your progress. I'm watching....and learning.
Sandy
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Old 11-08-2011, 07:10 AM   #214
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Cool! Here it is!



Nice job!
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Old 11-08-2011, 09:31 AM   #215
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Hey Marzboy!
I did remember your metal break but I don't know how you work them. I think my husband could figure it out but my biggest question is if what to buy for the raw material. Is it a sheet of aluminum that you cut into strips or do you buy strips and bend them ?

I would like to get one of these metal breaks because I can see they would be very handy. Especially if we want to use them on a couple of trailers....plus the one I haven't found yet . The shipping here would be atrocious so maybe I can find a used one. I did look at Ebay but they often specify local pickup or lots for shipping. I am also going to try to see if anyone around can make them for us. If not, I will have to order it premade and wait on that to arrive. Thanks for your input and keep posting pictures on your progress. I'm watching....and learning.
Sandy
@ Sandy All you need to do is buy some sheets of aluminum and cut them into strips(I used an air shear). Then I just copied a piece of old channel. I used 3003 H14 .032 I wished I would have used 5052 H32 .032 (much stronger and corrosion resistant). Its not that difficult to figure out, and judging by your husbands handiwork that should be no problem. I picked mine up on ebay for $150 used ($250 new harbor freight). The guy even delivered it right to my door for free! You might want to contact someone in your area that specializes in trailer restoration if you want it premade (I went with Area 63 Productions)
He was very generous with his time and I can drive to him. Good luck!!
@Splitrock Yep thats my handiwork and hand.
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Old 11-08-2011, 09:37 AM   #216
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Why not have Marzboy make these up for you? Won't cost much to ship a couple strips of aluminum channel.
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Old 11-08-2011, 05:52 PM   #217
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Thanks...

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@ Sandy All you need to do is buy some sheets of aluminum and cut them into strips(I used an air shear). Then I just copied a piece of old channel. I used 3003 H14 .032 I wished I would have used 5052 H32 .032 (much stronger and corrosion resistant). Its not that difficult to figure out, and judging by your husbands handiwork that should be no problem. I picked mine up on ebay for $150 used ($250 new harbor freight). The guy even delivered it right to my door for free! You might want to contact someone in your area that specializes in trailer restoration if you want it premade (I went with Area 63 Productions)
He was very generous with his time and I can drive to him. Good luck!!
@Splitrock Yep thats my handiwork and hand.
Thanks Marzboy,
I did do some checking today and if I can find the kind of aluminum we need, I can either have our school do it or a business place locally for the channel. I hate to ask people to do things and would rather just either do it myself or get it directly from a company but the cost gets to be too prohibitive. I have not decided what to do exactly yet. I still don't know what the process will be do get the wheel well channel. Stay tuned...
Sandy
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Old 11-08-2011, 05:56 PM   #218
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Oh I like this idea!

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Why not have Marzboy make these up for you? Won't cost much to ship a couple strips of aluminum channel.

I love this idea! I just haven't quite figured out how to break it to Marzboy that he is going to be supplying our materials and his labor. Hmm....I will have to think of a way to surprise him with this idea.
Sandy
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Old 11-08-2011, 08:12 PM   #219
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Ha! How bout I sell you my gently used metal break!!
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Old 11-08-2011, 08:34 PM   #220
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Sold if it comes with delivery!

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Ha! How bout I sell you my gently used metal break!!
I would love to buy your gently used metal break if you can deliver it. Just drive north and then hang a sharp right after you hit Washington state. And as long as you are close to Oregon, there is a cool trailer out there I would like you to drag here. Two birds with one stone!
Sandy
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