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Old 06-18-2009, 03:43 AM   #161
Restorations done right
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Hey Truck, you avoiding my question? Why .040? The original skin is .032. Personally I do not see what you are gaining in going thicker. Sometimes I am a slow on the uptake.
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Old 06-18-2009, 08:57 AM   #162
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Originally Posted by 62overlander View Post
Hey Truck, you avoiding my question? Why .040? The original skin is .032. Personally I do not see what you are gaining in going thicker. Sometimes I am a slow on the uptake.
When I did the skin on AIRSTREAMGYPSY's Bambi, AEROWOOD recommended 0.040. The down side is cost and very small weight gain. The up side is reduced risk of an oil can wrinkle, possible increased damage tolerance, and much better "feel" when handling. I think Airstream used 0.032 as an acceptable compromise on cost, but it's a very small delta in cost for a vintage restoration project, compared to all the other costs of keeping a Vintage Airstream in shape. I think the upgrade is well worth it. 'Course, we were dealing with only a 4'x4' sheet...

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Old 06-18-2009, 09:08 AM   #163
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Hi Frank, Zep nailed it. I think the gist is that the 040" is easier to handle, and will stay flatter or hold a smoother curve compared to lighter gauges. But it is about 8 oz heavier per linear foot and is harder to roll for shipping.
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Old 06-18-2009, 09:41 AM   #164
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I went out and gave my panels the 'thumb test' where I pushed lightly against new skin and old. Same front panels, opposite sides. I don't doubt Frank's information that the old skin is .032, but the new skin feels thinner when I push with my thumb. Maybe the older skin is slightly stiffer because of age or difference in alloy. If you want the feel to be equal, 0.40 is what I would use if I had to do it again. (not that I want to do it again soon. )

Say hi to Airparts for me, I was very happy with their service.
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Old 06-18-2009, 08:14 PM   #165
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Hot metal

Yup, I keep wanting to post that the belly is complete but it still needs another few hours, plus channel rivets too! (they're still in the mail).

Just some shots of the rear skin and the first flat section installed today.

I had to use some 040" on one curved section behind the wheels, at least it looks the same (to me). Weirdly every corner seems to get progressively worse, or maybe the first was beginners luck

The BAL jacks arrived via UPS, to a local hotel, I guess that makes me rural..
I'll pick them up tomorrow and get them on ready for the shell down day.

So todays lesson is a toss up between "drill swarf being subject to gravity and it's very hot" and "not to roll in PL300, it's sticks to T-shirts". Still it could be worse last weeks lesson was do not get epoxy in your hair.

I'm also curious to know if anyone has fallen asleep under their Airstream because it was pretty tempting today.
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Old 06-19-2009, 11:23 AM   #166
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I see in your pictures, one, nice work being done, but also, you drilling many holes to hold your belly skin on the channel. Remember that your shell will overlap the belly skin and it too will need rivet holes. If you are using new skin around the bottom you may be alright, but it will be hard to drill the holes from the inside. If you are using the existing shell skin the chances of the the holes matching up are slim. The original only had a sample of rivets holding the belley skin up (the dreaded hidden rivets) until the shell was put on and then rivets all he way around were used.

You may have plans for all this and I may be off base, but hopefully I may be heading you off in drilling too many.
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Old 06-19-2009, 11:40 AM   #167
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A good point and I have gone a little fastener crazy, but I have a plan, kind of..

I'm going to flush rivet the belly pan on using only as many rivets as I need, marking their location once complete. Once the shell goes back on my current plan uses mostly new skin so I should be OK. Looking back at my old belly pan it was riveted about every 4 inches on the straight sections and one or two in each tab or the corners. The worst rivets for hiding were those on the corners which were overlapped by the straight side sheets. I still need to pick up a pancake drill attachment or use the strap duplicator from Spruce if it arrives in time.

I did think about using aluminum tape to hold the belly in situ but I think it would have been too tricky.

Your point is very valid though; I should have used less holes on the straight sections.
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Old 06-19-2009, 07:10 PM   #168
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Stabilization

It rained most of the day so all I got done was the rear BAL jacks this afternoon.

They seem OK and came with the feet attached. (no mounting hardware though). They make the floor rock solid even though they detract from the smooth flow of the belly, (in my opinion). I would have liked to install them 24" further forward but my tank set up precludes this.

For the keen observers the 4x4 block was necessary as the trailer is on very uneven and sloped ground. Rest assured I wouldn't try it if the chassis wasn't already very well supported.
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Old 06-29-2009, 08:22 PM   #169
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Towing with an import!!!!!

The BIG day started around noon and took me 7 hours. Some of that was taken up with cleaning and priming a rib with corrosion but then the scary stuff started...

I lifted the shell about 4", relocated the sawhorses and let all the air out of the trailer tires to get the chassis back in place. I used my trusty Husqvarna to back it carefully in and it worked great.

I just leveled the chassis with axle stands and the BAL stabilizers and bit by bit lowered the shell down moving between the front and back with a 3 1/2 ton floor jack and blocks.

All in all it seems good, the wheel well rivet lines aren't perfect but I can see a way around that. There's just gravity holding the shell, and probably 500 lbs of lumber, down on the chassis right now so I'm hoping for zero storms.

Now I know it will go back together I'll get on with ordering some exterior skin and maybe a tongue jack!
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Old 06-29-2009, 08:28 PM   #170
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"The Rover Has Landed".



Congratulations!
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Old 06-29-2009, 08:33 PM   #171
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Congratulations! She is starting to look like a trailer again.
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Old 06-29-2009, 08:52 PM   #172
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Thanks guys, I'm really happy that I can get going on this project now I know the bones are all good.
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Old 06-30-2009, 11:00 AM   #173
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WOW Great job! Keep up the good work man
Quote:
Originally Posted by truckasaurus View Post
The BIG day started around noon and took me 7 hours. Some of that was taken up with cleaning and priming a rib with corrosion but then the scary stuff started...

I lifted the shell about 4", relocated the sawhorses and let all the air out of the trailer tires to get the chassis back in place. I used my trusty Husqvarna to back it carefully in and it worked great.

I just leveled the chassis with axle stands and the BAL stabilizers and bit by bit lowered the shell down moving between the front and back with a 3 1/2 ton floor jack and blocks.

All in all it seems good, the wheel well rivet lines aren't perfect but I can see a way around that. There's just gravity holding the shell, and probably 500 lbs of lumber, down on the chassis right now so I'm hoping for zero storms.

Now I know it will go back together I'll get on with ordering some exterior skin and maybe a tongue jack!
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Old 07-01-2009, 01:42 PM   #174
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questions, always the questions

Happy Canada Day!

The shell and bracing is still just sitting in place on the floor so it's time to get it secured. My current plan is to:
-raise the shell about an inch all around
-apply a decent bead of Vulkem 116 onto the belly pan just below the shell but only on the end sections
-maybe apply Vulkem on the inside of the shell just above the C channel
-lower the shell again
-attach the steel bow and door frame brackets (bolt and buck)
-drill, cleco, re-drill and buck the end sections
-remove and replace the side panels, (using mucho Vulkem at this point)

I'm hoping to pick the sheet up in a couple of weeks and maybe I'll get some Vulkem 635 as it's smoother in texture. (Ryan is letting me have some stuff shipped to his business address, how kind is that!)

I think the riveting is going to messy with all the Vulkem so if there's any tips I'm all ears.

Does this sound like an OK plan based on the premise that I keep the curved sections and just replace the straight side panels?
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Old 07-02-2009, 06:13 AM   #175
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Originally Posted by truckasaurus View Post
Happy Canada Day!

The shell and bracing is still just sitting in place on the floor so it's time to get it secured. My current plan is to:
-raise the shell about an inch all around
-apply a decent bead of Vulkem 116 onto the belly pan just below the shell but only on the end sections
-maybe apply Vulkem on the inside of the shell just above the C channel
-lower the shell again
-attach the steel bow and door frame brackets (bolt and buck)
-drill, cleco, re-drill and buck the end sections
-remove and replace the side panels, (using mucho Vulkem at this point)

I'm hoping to pick the sheet up in a couple of weeks and maybe I'll get some Vulkem 635 as it's smoother in texture. (Ryan is letting me have some stuff shipped to his business address, how kind is that!)

I think the riveting is going to messy with all the Vulkem so if there's any tips I'm all ears.

Does this sound like an OK plan based on the premise that I keep the curved sections and just replace the straight side panels?
Yes, the riveting can get messy with all that vulkem. Keep a roll of clean paper towels, a can of WD-40, and a jug of mineral spirits handy. The WD-40 cleans the vulkem off the aluminum (and/or your tools ) and then the mineral spirits will clean the WD-40 up and give the alumunum (and/or your tools ) a final cleaning.

Good luck, sounds like fun!

-Marcus

Oh, and Happy (Belated) Canada Day!
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Old 07-02-2009, 01:09 PM   #176
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analysis paralysis is over

At last the sheet is ordered. I've gone for some 040" for the curb side lower panel (12') and some 032" for the longer panels (16'). I wasn't losing my mind after all, 040" T3 Alclad from Airparts is only available in up to 12' lengths.

I'm getting enough material for the two curb side sheets and lower street side plus one extra length which I can use if I have a hick-up. If there's no errors I'll use it on the tail, roof or maybe the ceiling, we'll see how it all goes.

I've been messing around with iPhoto to see what it wold look like with less curb side windows but I guess I'll see it for real soon. I was looking at nunya001's remodel photos and it's making me think maybe I'm staying too conventional in my thinking.

Quick question #1, I'm looking at Removal 620 (paint on) to strip the layers of paint from the fiberglass end caps whilst they're still out, it seems kind of spendy at $60 (CAD) a gallon and I'd need two probably. Is there anything else I should consider before I order some? (I need to repair a crack in one cap and I'm thinking about cutting the medicine cabinet out if that makes a difference).

Quick questions #2, It's a way off but what rivets will I need to reattach the door hinges and will a 3x gun drive them?
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Old 07-02-2009, 04:01 PM   #177
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...
Quick questions #2, It's a way off but what rivets will I need to reattach the door hinges and will a 3x gun drive them?...
AIRSTREAMGYPSY fixed her door problem a couple months ago and had to take the lower hinge off to replace the adjacent skin. The rivets were weird--very distinctly cone-shaped heads, but I think I recall that they were 5/32 (perhaps you can PM her--she might recall exactly). We used Universal head rivets to replace them. Whether they were 5/32 or 3/16, a 3X gun did a fine job driving them.

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Old 07-02-2009, 05:12 PM   #178
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At last the sheet is ordered. I've gone for some 040" for the curb side lower panel (12') and some 032" for the longer panels (16'). I wasn't losing my mind after all, 040" T3 Alclad from Airparts is only available in up to 12' lengths.

I'm getting enough material for the two curb side sheets and lower street side plus one extra length which I can use if I have a hick-up. If there's no errors I'll use it on the tail, roof or maybe the ceiling, we'll see how it all goes.

I've been messing around with iPhoto to see what it wold look like with less curb side windows but I guess I'll see it for real soon. I was looking at nunya001's remodel photos and it's making me think maybe I'm staying too conventional in my thinking.

Quick question #1, I'm looking at Removal 620 (paint on) to strip the layers of paint from the fiberglass end caps whilst they're still out, it seems kind of spendy at $60 (CAD) a gallon and I'd need two probably. Is there anything else I should consider before I order some? (I need to repair a crack in one cap and I'm thinking about cutting the medicine cabinet out if that makes a difference).

Quick questions #2, It's a way off but what rivets will I need to reattach the door hinges and will a 3x gun drive them?
It's your Airstream, and I am a firm believer in doing anything and everything you like to it. If you've followed my renovation, you know I'm nobody's traditionalist.

But man, I'd hate to see those jalousie windows go. The jalousie windows are one of the top 3 or 4 reasons I chose the particular era that I ended up buying. I absolutely love them.

Also, they do a really nice job of letting in air without letting in rain. But really, for me, the aesthetics are what I like best.

Whatever you do I am certain will be well-done and well thought-out, as is the rest of your renovation. Just throwing in my own $.02 from one early 60s Overlander owner to another. Now, please feel free to completely ignore me, won't hurt my feelings a bit.

-Marcus
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Old 07-03-2009, 10:18 AM   #179
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It's your Airstream, and I am a firm believer in doing anything and everything you like to it. ...

But man, I'd hate to see those jalousie windows go. The jalousie windows are one of the top 3 or 4 reasons I chose the particular era that I ended up buying. I absolutely love them.
....
Gotta say I agree with Marcus. Many of you know I'm a window hater, in general--all my upper and lower vista view windows are gone in the Overlander, Safari, and Sovereign. Not to mention the wing windows in the Safari, too.

But the jalousies make the models they're in.

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Old 07-03-2009, 10:51 AM   #180
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I think you're both right. The jalousie's are probably the ones to keep, even if they may be a weak point in the structure (I read that on the forum so it's not gospel).

The regular curb side unit will still come out for panel replacement but again it will probably go back in otherwise the bathroom would be windowless.

And don't worry the door within a door is safe too....
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