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Old 12-07-2009, 06:41 PM   #1
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1965 26' Overlander
Chapin , South Carolina
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Stott Overlander 1965- PROJECT

Hi,
We just became members after purchasing (OK, just before purchasing but in anticipation of) our first airstream. It is a 1965 in very rough condition but it was only $650. The frame seems solid, it tows straight and easy, the skin isn't bad. Now the bad news: VERMIN, BUGS, ROT, inside needs to be gutted, windows need repairing, small 3 inch tear in top roof panel (on middle side just rear of door), steps need to be repaired and welded, ...
Most of you got the rundown in another category post but I thought I'd add pictures and continue to update this thread with progress reports.
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Old 12-07-2009, 07:00 PM   #2
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1965 26' Overlander
Chapin , South Carolina
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first day of demolision

After 7 hours of work (which I have to admit I can't take much credit for, my hubby did most! The bugs, mouse skeleton, vermin droppings, etc. really grossed me out. We made progress. Saved as much as we could for templates but I doubt we can use it for anything else. Floor is surprisingly good for the condition of the rest. Got all out except the bathroom and the heater by the end of the night. Take a look at what the screwdriver is pointing to in the first pic! Second picture is Russ uncovering the only "clean" spot of flooring under original? tiles!
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Old 12-07-2009, 07:19 PM   #3
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Keep up the enthusiasm and don't let a bump in the restoration road get you down. I've been getting the itch to do a restoration, but since we already have our Sovereign, I think I'm going to do a WWII Jeep.

Good luck and keep the pics coming; it gives the rest of us motivation.
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Old 12-07-2009, 07:25 PM   #4
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Congratulations on your Airstream...looks like you are well on your way to your home away from home. We had a SOB once that was so invested with mice that I ran around with a shop vac sucking them up. Glad you don't have that problem. It's amazing how fast the deconstruction can go...good luck!

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Old 12-09-2009, 03:07 PM   #5
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Getting started- looks a little better

OK, so we gave it a bath and it is almost gutted. Now it is starting to look like a camper I could stay in albeit a little bare. We also started to remove the window trim and lower panels. Many of you mentioned that it would continue to reek if we didn't get out the mouse soiled insulation so we are planning on replacing that too. Floor needs to be replaced.
A couple of questions:
Best wood for the floor? Do we need marine grade plywood?
Any suggestions on how to strip that awful dark blue paint that was slapped everywhere? It peels off in a lot of areas but some is stuck on well in others.
Thank you for the advice.
Jenn and Russ
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Old 12-09-2009, 04:32 PM   #6
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Floor and Paint

Jenn and Russ-

Great start! We used Exterior grade plywood for our floor, with the understanding that it is the same glue as marine, but doesn't have as many imperfections filled. It's quite a bit less in price!

I have heard that paint thinner will remove paint without hurting the zolatone underneath. Haven't tried it though.

You might want to consider reflectix insulation when you redo it. Plenty of threads on that. One piece of advice from someone who is currently on cabinets -- run a couple of extra wires in the walls -- you'll need them before you know it!

Best of luck,
John
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Old 12-09-2009, 07:35 PM   #7
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Marine or exterior good; pressure treated not so good. Might want to look at Ambie64 thread on installation of Prodex looks like good stuff, but will need deep pockets. See insulation for less.com

Kevin
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Old 12-14-2009, 06:57 AM   #8
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1965 26' Overlander
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1st week of restoration- 46hrs

Quick update,
One week and 46 hours of work later, we are making progress. The interior bottom surround is off, some of the floor has been removed, a few pounds of very smelly foul wood, insulation, turds, bugs, wasp nests (at least a dozen), ant homes, small unidentified bugs, one bird (alive and healthy- released), and I think we are getting to the clean stuff!!!
Taking up some of the floor, we are encouraged to see a solid frame. Ordered por15. Need to finish removing the floor, probably get some welding done by the steps, wire brush everything, paint the frame.... seems like the list goes on for ever. But, we are enjoying working on it and glad to find no unexpected or nasty surprises so far.
Any feedback from those who have reinforced their frames to prevent rear end separation?
While we were taking off the interior lower panels we found a funny cartoon that I assume was drawn on by the original factory worker as we don't think any repairs have ever been done to this unit. I have included a picture. Anyone else ever find anything like this? Just drawn in pencil. Gave us a chuckle.
Jenn and Russ
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Old 12-14-2009, 07:10 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JSTOTT View Post
Quick update,
One week and 46 hours of work later, we are making progress. The interior bottom surround is off, some of the floor has been removed, a few pounds of very smelly foul wood, insulation, turds, bugs, wasp nests (at least a dozen), ant homes, small unidentified bugs, one bird (alive and healthy- released), and I think we are getting to the clean stuff!!!
Taking up some of the floor, we are encouraged to see a solid frame. Ordered por15. Need to finish removing the floor, probably get some welding done by the steps, wire brush everything, paint the frame.... seems like the list goes on for ever. But, we are enjoying working on it and glad to find no unexpected or nasty surprises so far.
Any feedback from those who have reinforced their frames to prevent rear end separation?
While we were taking off the interior lower panels we found a funny cartoon that I assume was drawn on by the original factory worker as we don't think any repairs have ever been done to this unit. I have included a picture. Anyone else ever find anything like this? Just drawn in pencil. Gave us a chuckle.
Jenn and Russ
Reinforcing the frame, does not prevent rear end separation.

Reinforcing the shell hold downs at the rear, does prevent rear end separation.

When your nearing that point, make a post, and I will be glad to share with you, how that is vry easily done.

Andy
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Old 12-14-2009, 12:24 PM   #10
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1965 26' Overlander
Chapin , South Carolina
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Rear end separation fix

Thank you Andy!
I spoke to you on the phone this past week but I must have messed up something in my notes as what I explained to my hubby wasn't correct. Please give me the run down anytime you have a minute. We have almost 2 weeks off to work on our airstream (starting next week) and need to get supplies ahead of time, so we should be at that point very soon.
I appreciate the info!
Jennifer
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Old 12-14-2009, 03:53 PM   #11
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Andy...would you mind sharing this information with others on the forum as well. I know I would benefit from this information as well. Thanks for helping so many of us needy Airstreamers!

Bob
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Old 12-14-2009, 05:10 PM   #12
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Andy...would you mind sharing this information with others on the forum as well. I know I would benefit from this information as well. Thanks for helping so many of us needy Airstreamers!

Bob
JSTOTT, Roadrunner and others.

The following is a quick sketch I made of "how to" take care of the rear end separation, permanently.

Of course, the floor channel must be OK. The floor must be OK. The (2) steel plates are quarter moon shaped and should be 1/4 or 3/8 inch steel.

The hold down bolts should be 3/8 inch, with washers and lock washers.

The (2) steel right angled parts should be 1/4 or 3/8 steel plates about 2 inches long, and they are welded to the outside of the frame and should be located so the the banana wrap, when reinstalled, will hide them.

Several bolts should be installed in the rear hold down plate, and the steel plate. 2 nolts can be used in the angle bracket.

This fix, takes a little more time, but when done, the separation problem will not return, since you have greatly increase the shell to frame attachment strength. Also, when the rear quarter panels are fastened back onto the floor channel, use 3/16 inch pop rivets, about every 2 inches apart.

As you can see, the elephant ear fix, now becomes a joke.

Andy
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Old 12-15-2009, 12:04 PM   #13
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Thanks Andy from Inland RV!

Andy,
I REALLY appreciate the drawing. Makes perfect sense. I will post pictures as soon as we get that part done!
Thank you again,
Jennifer
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Old 12-15-2009, 09:35 PM   #14
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How do you plan to make a template for the floor since it appears the rear bath was rotted out? Also what was involved in removing the the bath/toilet unit.
My 65 Amb. is probably pretty close to yours.I will be following your work in the next week or so .Thanks for the pics.Steve
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Old 12-17-2009, 08:10 PM   #15
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Removing the shower and sink

How do you plan to make a template for the floor since it appears the rear bath was rotted out? I was going to make a cardboard template around the inside aluminum channel and then add the width of the channel.

What was involved in removing the the bath/toilet unit. I pulled out the divider wall to ease access to the shower. The bath and toilet unit removal required removing all the associated pop rivets at waist level and floor. Through the back door there were about 4 screws that attached the sink pipe cover to the toilet seat bench. Once the basin and toilet was loose and ready to move, I cut the schedule 40 and copper pipe to free everything up. (I plan on replacing it all anyway) My toilet and black tank were both falling out of the back and floor was rotted so it was not difficult for me to remove them...

Removing the floor has been tedious. Cut section, grind out elevator bolts and screws. Support shell and move on.

Russ
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Old 12-19-2009, 03:18 PM   #16
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Update-cleaning trim getting frame ready to paint

Update,
It is raining again as it seems to have been doing every day since we got the camper. I am inside trying to clean the trim around the windows, which Russ removed for me. We have the vinyl clad aluminum interior with that crosshatch/basket weave look. They painted everything dark blue or grayish white. No idea what kind of paint. The main panels we will sand lightly and paint as I don't think we really have another option. The trim around the windows I decided I wanted back to the original if possible. Spent days trying different ways of removing the paint without destroying the vinyl. Finally have a method, slow and tedious, but works. I soak the pieces in VERY hot water and then use a green kitchen scrubby to scrub it off. Sore hand but it is taking off 99%. I attached a before and after pic. The actual windows I will have to strip as they slapped blue paint on the aluminum too. The bathroom window has the zolotone painted finish as are a couple of the panels behind the closet. I guess they were using what they had.
Attached a pic of Russ cleaning up the frame so we can paint it. Frame looks great!!! Phew!!! Couldn't be sure until we got the floor up. We are planning on keeping the shell on, prepping the frame, get the new floor in in sections, dropping the belly pan one side at a time. I know not everyone agrees with a shell on redo, but seems most sensible for us. Will have Russ post more on what he is doing tonight or tomorrow.
Jenn
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Old 12-19-2009, 03:58 PM   #17
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Russ and Jenn...I am really enjoying watching the progress on your "65" Overlander. You two are doing what I wish I had the time to do. I am really impressed with what you have accomplished so far. It makes me want to go out and do some work on our "78" Ambassador...oh, forgot...we are covered with snow here in the NorthEast. Keep up the good work!

Bob
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Old 12-21-2009, 08:32 AM   #18
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The beauty of a power washer!

We were going to paint the frame with Por15 this weekend but I talked Russ into giving the inside a good wash first. Being a man, he had to pull out his manly power washer!LOVE the results! Seems like we may be able to salvage the crosshatch/basket weave vinyl clad interior and NOT have to paint it! The power washer is peeling off the layers of paint without ruining the finish. It is very time consuming and cold (only 28 degrees this am) but just might happen.
I attached a pic of the front. All the paint came off the fiberglass section. The second pic shows the blue and the grayish white paints before and after.
The best part is that our camper no longer smells like mouse turds. Whoohooo!!!
I also started repairing the window frames. I'll post pic when I have one done. The alumiweld on the corners didn't go as smoothly as I hoped, but I am getting better. Will post pics tomorrow of the windows.
Jenn and Russ
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Old 12-21-2009, 08:38 AM   #19
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Might want to check out Tom's 67 restoration web site, a wealth of info.

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Old 12-24-2009, 05:31 AM   #20
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Great Progress

Russ,I am making a start on my 65.Got the couch out to find a cracked water tank and rot holes on both sides of front floor.
I am considering using a 1 1/2 in. hole saw on the elevator bolts ,lift the old off in one piece for template and remove bolts after out.Did you attempt something like this for floor removal or cut in sections?

Also I noticed,although my vinyl was in good shape, the front shell has latex over the Zolatone paint.Did you attempt to strip this also and did the Zolatone remain after stripping? Thanks,Steve
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