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Old 04-02-2007, 07:45 PM   #1
4 Rivet Member
KeithC's Avatar
1994 34' Excella
1978 31' Sovereign
Mansfield , Georgia
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 275
New Georgia Member

My wife and I are about to become "empty nesters" as the third of our three children heads off to college in the fall.

When our older children were little we tent camped and boated a lot, but as the years went by and my wife and I entered our 30's, work demands increased. In our 40's we had multi-kids in college with all the accompaning costs, and all the fun seemed to stop. It became a work, to home, to work routine for both of us.

At the age of 50, I had a mid-life crisis. Instead of buying a flashy Corvette insearch of a 25 yr. old boxum blond, I started researching travel trailers.

Airstreams were the best by far and vintage airstream owners seemed to have more fun and appreciate their trailers more than any other group.

This week I bought a 1968 Airstream Land Yacht 24' Tradewind that has been setting unused for several years (upon my wifes' inspection and approval HA). The AS is covered all over, top and sides, with tree sap...but I think she will be beautiful.

The previous owner is a great guy, the relative of a co-worker, and the owner of two AS's in the past. After he bought this Tradewind he spent a summer refurbishing the interior. He is a craftsman. He sold the Tradewind to me at a "friend of the family" price.

But the exterior has three problems that I will be researching.

1) The front passenger side of the trailer, lower bottom extreme outer skin piece (I do not know the proper name for the panel) has a 6" dent with a crack in the skin, like a tire rub and cracked it if the trailer was turned too tight.

2) The out rigger (I think that is the name of the piece) under the door to the right is rusted through.

3) The passenger side rear frame, before the bumper, lower part of the frame that makes the assembly double thickness, is rusted out.

I will be making the necessary proper repair, I am reading, learning, understanding, and learning more from prior posts. I look forward to ya'll guidance.


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Old 04-02-2007, 07:55 PM   #2
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1995 30' Limited
Ashland , Missouri
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 2,610
Welcome to the forum! It sounds as if you have big work ahead of you, but you entered the adventure understanding the job. Congratulations on your new obsession Be sure to use the search function at the top of the page, and do not hesitate to ask questions. Someone is always sure to send some good information your way. ~G
1995 Airstream Classic Limited 30' ~ Gypsy
1978 Argosy Minuet, 6.0~Minnie/GPZWGN
Chev Silverado 2500HD Duramax/Allison, 4X4, Crew Cab
WBCCI #5013 AIR #2908
Go, Mizzou...Tigers on the prowl!
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Old 04-02-2007, 07:58 PM   #3
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1979 28' Airstream Excella 28
southwestern , Michigan
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 1,725
Images: 10
welcome and congratulations, both on your becoming an airstream parent, but also on your decision made during your midlife crisis. i'm sure you will get a lot more enjoyment out of your new metal baby than a sports car or a buxom (probably fake anyway) blond! you have come to the right place for all your questions and experiences. as many others will tell you, we love pictures, especially of the whole restoration process. welcome friend!
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Old 04-02-2007, 09:03 PM   #4
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KeithC's Avatar
1994 34' Excella
1978 31' Sovereign
Mansfield , Georgia
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 275
Thanks to all.

As a complete novice to travel trailers, a seasoned guys comment like Maxandgeorgia saying "big work ahead of you" has to make one a bit worried.

From stem to stearn of my 1968 Tradewind..and I checked...the trailer has:

1) E-Z load leveler hitch bars and receiver
2) Two new alum propane tanks
3) New propane regulators and lines
4) New power lift hitch jack
5) New flooring in front with three applications of epoxy
6) New fresh water tank
7) New three burner propane stove top
8) New microwave (replaced oven)
9) New AM/FM/CD stero
10) New fabric coverings for all interior, including front sofa, rear twin bed
11) All new pleated curtains throughout the interior
12) New frig, butane / electric
13) Late model air conditioner
14) New butane hotwater heater
15) New water pump
16) New procelain toilet with new falange and seal
17) New plumbing around "wastewater flush device" I do not know the proper AS name is is a grey/black water turbo break up flush system for the black water system.
18) New 12V deep cycle battery

Was $4,100 to much to pay?
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Old 04-02-2007, 10:19 PM   #5
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2013 31' Classic
Crossville , Tennessee
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 458
Images: 11
I think you might have several takers at $4200!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Enjoy your new acquisition. If you are truley smitten with aluminitus, you will indeed spend much time, and more $'s on her. She sure sounds nice.
There are several of us in GA. If you need help or advice, just ask. We have plenty of the advice catagory!
steelbird312 WBCCI #6673 jerry Hodge
2013 31" Classic limited
Have no intention of arriving at the grave safely, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, throttle in the other, totally worn out and screaming
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Old 04-03-2007, 08:14 AM   #6
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PizzaChop's Avatar
1973 31' Sovereign
Danielsville , Georgia
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 838
Images: 219
Welcome Fellow Georgians!


You may find out down the road that the corvette was cheaper.

Seriously, it sounds like you did pretty well.

Here are a couple of solutions to your issues (Not sure exactly what you're describing with your 1st item, but below is a pic of the scar I patched on my old unit (wheel came off 50 miles from home, very sad, still cry, even now):

Outrigger Repair

Rear Frame Rebuild
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Ron Kaes
Psalm 112
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Old 04-03-2007, 10:15 AM   #7
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Levon's Avatar
1981 22' Excella II
Currently Looking...
Currently Looking...
Colbert , Georgia
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: 1948 22' Liner
Posts: 201
Images: 168
Greetings and welcome to an informative group of streamers

Keith, the corvett would have definitely been cheaper, but the blond might have $ broke $ you or even worst! Ask lots of questions and you will get many answers and ways of fixing things. My wife and I are in Ga. also, and we have restored/refurbished 8 Vintage units in the past 6 yrs. Please PM me if you have questions or if I can be of assistance.

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Old 04-03-2007, 12:17 PM   #8
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1973 27' Overlander
Catfish Corners , Georgia
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 5,719
Images: 39
$4100!? That was a steal. Let me throw my hat in the ring, if you need some help, just let me know. Like others here, I'm in the middle of a rebuild. Sounds like yours needs some work on the frame that could be easy, or could be complicated. Try and post a few pictures if you can. We love to give "free" advice! Seriously, sounds like you got a good deal on a good camper. The first Airstream I ever looked at up close was '68 Tradewind. It was all down hill after that.

Solve for X, Or is it Y?
Air No. 6427
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Old 04-03-2007, 02:13 PM   #9
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empresley's Avatar
1984 34' International
1977 Argosy 24
Central , Georgia
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 492
Images: 15
Great? Adding more to the Georgia owners list!

Sounds like you are ready for a rally.

Wash her up and come on...

Travelers by aluminum roadships, loyalists to one species,
masters of convenience, herdsmen steeped in maintenance and restoration.

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Old 04-03-2007, 03:58 PM   #10
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1958 22' Flying Cloud
1956 30' Sovereign of the Road
1963 16' Bambi
Southeastern Area , Tennessee
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 2,116
Oh yeah, you stole it. Even though more restoration may be needed, at $4100 there was an awful lot of "new" in that list of features and amenities. Congratulations to another Tradewind owner. And do come on to the April Springstream. We would all love to meet you in person.
Traveling With Elvis
life with a 1956 Sovereign of the Road
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Old 04-03-2007, 04:12 PM   #11
Addicted to Aluminum
A-Merry-Can's Avatar
1959 18' "Footer"
1964 24' Tradewind
1954 29' Liner
Woodstock , Georgia
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,015
LOTS of 'winds in this group.


there's always room for one more!
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Old 04-03-2007, 08:20 PM   #12
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Hampton , New Hampshire
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 2,122
Images: 12
And definitely join us up the road in Hiawassee in a couple of weeks! Welcome aboard!
The Slowsky's
2008 Airstream 27FB International Ocean Breeze
2014 Ford F250 King Ranch 4X4 w/6.7L Diesel, Hensley Hitch
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Old 04-04-2007, 11:03 AM   #13
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1951 21' Flying Cloud
1960 24' Tradewind
West Coast , BC
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 3,790
Images: 10
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I can assure you, the corvette would not have been cheaper. Having owned several of them this comes from experience. The Airstream will always need some level of maintenance and that's the fun part for a lot of us. Playing with our trailer.

I have been watching the various sites for a trailer for a friend who's gotten the bug big time. He wants one in the fifties, 22' with twins but we've been looking at everything just in case something "new" (being 60's and up) hits the hot button. Any Airstream in the shape you are talking starts in the $6,500 bracket and the up significantly so you made out like a bandit on this one.

Glad to have you on board.

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Old 04-04-2007, 08:28 PM   #14
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KeithC's Avatar
1994 34' Excella
1978 31' Sovereign
Mansfield , Georgia
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 275
Thanks to everyone. I just got the trailer home this evening, she is all cleaned up and I will post pics as soon as possible.
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