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Old 07-04-2007, 07:15 AM   #1
Silver Mist
 
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1977 31' Sovereign
Riverhead , New York
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Question Idiot backs into tree

I can't believe I did it!

My wife and I always use our cell phones to back in, I could find mine quick enough so I said just yell out how I'm doing........she said STOP ....too late!

After putting in almost 400 hours restoring this thing and driving 13,000 miles this year I backed into a tree

I pulled out 90% with a suction cup, but it still needs to be replaced.

Question, I need to replace two panels the one with the tail light and the curved piece above it.

Do I need to remove the inner skins for any reason?

What years are interchangeable?

I know the curved piece must be bought but can the lower piece be easily fabricated from a flat sheet?

What salvage yards are worth calling besides Colaws?
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Old 07-04-2007, 07:32 AM   #2
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Ouch. I know Bob's in High Springs, Florida has a 77 Overlander and a 76 Sovereign, they can pull off the panels, but they will not ship. Maybe you can find a forums member from around there to pick them up for you, and send them to you.
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Old 07-04-2007, 08:03 AM   #3
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Oh, don't feel like the Lone Ranger!

I prefer to explain that I was rear-ended by a large tree. Sounds better.

Wife and Daughter taking naps and the wind has come up. Site beside large lake is now a sand-blasting location and I need to move. Only get grunts from women when I suggest it, sooooo, I guess I can do this if I do it slowly. WRONG!!! Back into something I think is just brush to get turned and WHAM, tree hiding in brush. $14,000.00 damage. Aluminum bumpers don't do much do they?

Feel better Now?
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Old 07-04-2007, 08:19 AM   #4
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Don't feel bad, it seems to be happening more and more lately to a lot of folks....got any pics?
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Old 07-04-2007, 08:26 AM   #5
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We had to replace the rear segment on our '71 Sovereign above the tail lights this past winter (backing up into the garage...alone...12:30 AM after driving all the way from FL to MO including through an ice storm) and had it done at P&S in Ohio. They didn't have to remove the interior panels as the new segment was put in without bucking the rivets. However, we learned when we went to pick up the trailer that one of the previous owners had replaced the panel with the tail light with a flat piece rather than the proper curved piece. When the new segment was installed, it caused some minor wrinkling at the edge of that piece around the tail light; P&S said that tail light section is actually curved. Had we known, we would have replaced that section as well.

I would hazard a guess that the upper segment is the same from 1969 to about 1982 or so - just guessing - but I don't know about the segment around the tail light housing, as the housing itself changed after 1973 or so and then - I think - stayed the same for many years.
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Old 07-04-2007, 08:27 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overlander63
Ouch. I know Bob's in High Springs, Florida has a 77 Overlander and a 76 Sovereign, they can pull off the panels, but they will not ship. Maybe you can find a forums member from around there to pick them up for you, and send them to you.
Do you have a phone #?
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Old 07-04-2007, 08:33 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LI Pets
Do you have a phone #?
By a strange coincidence, I have the number in my cell phone...
386-454-5733
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Old 07-04-2007, 08:34 AM   #8
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Old 07-04-2007, 08:43 AM   #9
Silver Mist
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Midamrail
They didn't have to remove the interior panels as the new segment was put in without bucking the rivets.
That's what I was thinking

Quote:
However, we learned when we went to pick up the trailer that one of the previous owners had replaced the panel with the tail light with a flat piece rather than the proper curved piece. When the new segment was installed, it caused some minor wrinkling at the edge of that piece around the tail light; P&S said that tail light section is actually curved.
I thought there was a curve albeit a slight curve, I'll do both.

Quote:
I would hazard a guess that the upper segment is the same from 1969 to about 1982 or so - just guessing - but I don't know about the segment around the tail light housing, as the housing itself changed after 1973 or so and then - I think - stayed the same for many years.

I need more input on that issue.

I don't want to pay to ship these twice!
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Old 07-04-2007, 09:08 AM   #10
More than one rivet loose
 
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Hand signals

Ouch. All that work and a few seconds of disaster.
I would recomend hand signals. Aviation hand signals. The trick is to get the director to stand where you can see thenm and they can seee where you are going.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 2003.pdf (229.2 KB, 207 views)
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Old 07-04-2007, 09:17 AM   #11
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Ouch is right! A friend of mine tried to move his garage with his trailer. Eight panels later you cannot see any sign of the damage. Michelle, thanks for posting that document. I spent 4 years on the flight line with the USAF and I can relate to the hand signals. My wife has invented a few new ones which I can not post here
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Old 07-04-2007, 09:30 AM   #12
More than one rivet loose
 
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Four are the ones we use most often. Back strait up. Turn Left, Turn Right and the only one that needs to be clearly understood. STOP.
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Old 07-04-2007, 09:34 AM   #13
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Sorry to hear about the vegetation ambush. Or am-tree.

Our method in backing is for us - both of us - to get out and inspect the site, then I tell Page where I want to rear bumper to be. Then she will correct my line if needed, and stop me at the right place. We also agree that no brushing is allowed, no matter how small - twigs scratch like heck.

Hope your problem gets solved surprisingly cheaply.

Pat
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Old 07-04-2007, 09:41 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thecatsandi
Ouch. All that work and a few seconds of disaster.
I would recomend hand signals. Aviation hand signals. The trick is to get the director to stand where you can see thenm and they can seee where you are going.
Gosh, Michelle, if I pull this out after my "driver coaching" sessions and hand it to my wife I suspect it will end up in a place I would find very uncomfortable......

I backed my 1957 TV into an area a tree just happened to be passing through a couple of years ago. I thought the door opened kind of hard, and it was definitely a light tap. It was very expensive to have it repaired correctly. Since then I make sure someone is back there redirecting errant trees while I get the car or trailer into position.

Barry
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Old 07-04-2007, 10:20 AM   #15
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Hand signals

Quote:
Originally Posted by thecatsandi
Ouch. All that work and a few seconds of disaster.
I would recomend hand signals. Aviation hand signals. The trick is to get the director to stand where you can see thenm and they can seee where you are going.

I can attest for these too. My military pilot husband implemented these with me first off and they work well. No yelling, no divorce .

On another note, it seems to be less expensive to repair body damage to the TV than the Airstream.
We dinged up the new truck our first time backing out of a VERY narrow drive with trees on either side. We were bottoming out the back end of the trailer on the way out and were so distracted with that, that I wasn't watching the drivers side. Husband had pulled in his driver's side mirror so it wouldn't get snapped off, and he couldn't see. Oops! Oh my gosh we were sick, we got distracted! Lesson Learned!

It was under $1000 to fix .
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Old 07-04-2007, 11:08 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LI Pets
I can't believe I did it!

My wife and I always use our cell phones to back in, I could find mine quick enough so I said just yell out how I'm doing........she said STOP ....too late!

After putting in almost 400 hours restoring this thing and driving 13,000 miles this year I backed into a tree

I pulled out 90% with a suction cup, but it still needs to be replaced.

Question, I need to replace two panels the one with the tail light and the curved piece above it.

Do I need to remove the inner skins for any reason?

What years are interchangeable?

I know the curved piece must be bought but can the lower piece be easily fabricated from a flat sheet?

What salvage yards are worth calling besides Colaws?
I replaced the lower corner sections of my 71 GT using flat sheet so it is possible, But in order to make the backside "balanced" I had to do both sides. The original lower corner panels are indeed compound curved. Check out post 48 of this thread to see how I did it.http://www.airforums.com/forums/f381...n-26902-4.html
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Old 07-04-2007, 12:09 PM   #17
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Hand-held FRS Radios..

While I really appreciate the notion of being rear-ended by a tree, rather than backing unwisely into a stationary object, there is another reason not to rely on cell phones or hand signals for parking.. In many parts of the country, cell phones won't work, due to excessive distance from cell towers... In the dark, hand signals aren't visible either...

We learned about backing at night in large RV park in Calif Delta over July 4th holiday (coincidentally..) where watching couples scream drunkenly at each other (apprently they stopped along the way for a beverage ) provided more entertainment than the fireworks in the sky... Several power boxes and small trees were sacrificed along the way for having attached the RV..

We started with handheld CB's, but graduated to handheld FRS radios at less than $15/pair.. Always work anywhere, easy to find and use, and voices quietly communicating about obstacles, distances and level.. Dianne can move back and forth to watch both sides and see the sneaky trees lurking near the Excursion fenders while the trailer is happily swinging into place.. Often we are told that observers find our technique effective but boring, and as Martha says - "That's a good thing!"
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Old 07-04-2007, 12:19 PM   #18
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We knew we would be setting up at out last outing after dark and decided that the hand signals would not work very well. Earlier this year we had watched Silverback & Mrs Silverback park the stinger of his HA into the reciever with the use of a FRS and thought that would be a great idea.

We get to the campsite, break out the radios and begin the process. My wife is telling me left - right and so on. Then I go to ask her a question, she can not hear me. She never let go of the transmit button.
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Old 07-04-2007, 03:37 PM   #19
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Old 07-04-2007, 06:07 PM   #20
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Must of been using Miracle Grow on them trees to make 'em grow so fast...
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