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Old 02-11-2007, 12:08 AM   #1
Whirl with Earl
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1958 22' Flying Cloud
Ventura , California
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Intro and Howdy

Hi new to the forum. Srating the restoration on a 1957 airstream, Flying Cloud? Sorry to ask a basic question, what is the deal with the original rivets on the exterior? I obviously have to replace a panal on the outside so is it possible to duplicate the original exterior rivets? Was it a two person job, with one on the outside and one inside? Is it a solid rivet and not a pop rivet? My interior is off as well, so I can get to the inside of the exterior wall. Would it make sense to duplicate the original riveting? Or how are you guys doin' it? Thanks alot.
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Old 02-11-2007, 12:16 AM   #2
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Welcome -

Originals are a two person job - search "buck rivets"

If your don't have access to the inside or a second person, then search "olympic rivets". They work like a pop rivet but once "shaved" they blend with the originals.

1st rule of the forums - we always want pictures
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Old 02-11-2007, 12:38 AM   #3
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Welcome to the forums....

and you'll want to follow along NorCalBambi's resto of his 57 FC. He's been thru it all with a Bambi....and now is into his FC. He documents everything, so it makes it easy to follow his progression.
Hope this helps!
Good luck!
Jim & Cheryl

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Old 02-11-2007, 01:06 AM   #4
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Another welcome!

Good advice so far. There are multiple threads that will give you some direction. Along with the above suggestions, search for "Full Monte" or complete restoration, etc. You can also just browse through the Ribs-skins-rivets section of the forums. Good hunting, nice to have you here.
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Old 02-11-2007, 08:14 AM   #5
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Welcome to the Forums, and good luck with your new baby.
SuEllyn & Brian McCabe
WBCCI #3628 -- AIR #14872 -- TAC #FL-7
2015 FC 25' FB (Lucy) with HAHA
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Old 02-11-2007, 08:40 AM   #6
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1951 21' Flying Cloud
1960 24' Tradewind
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Welcome to the forum. Gosh, when I was looking, I could not find a '57 anything that was even worth attempting to restore so congrats on finding a good one. Using the search tool you will find pretty much any advice you need on redoing your rig, but the most important part is to post pictures. We love pictures and before, during and after are the most fun.

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Old 02-11-2007, 04:53 PM   #7
Whirl with Earl
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1958 22' Flying Cloud
Ventura , California
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Thanks for your help

Here are a few pic when I first got the trailer. Notice the "Whirl with Earle" on the front (and the back). The side panel is obviously the one I am replacing. So if buck rivets were the original rivets, would it make sense to use the buck rivets and what kind of tool hits the back of them? It seemed to me that the olympic rivets and the shaver were a little on the expensive side. I looked for NorCal Bambi but could not find them, sorry I am new to this navigation. Thanks again.
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Old 02-11-2007, 05:20 PM   #8
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1960 22' Safari
in the wilderness , The great Mojave Desert
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Hi and Welcome!

The search function is a little hard at first. Put in the word Rivet and start seperating the threads. It'll take a bit.


There are lots of California forum Rallies and this coming weekend there is one at the Malibu RV park on P.C.H. in Malibu. Stop by for Happy Hour and Potluck around 5:00. Bring your mate too. Not only will you be well fed but One of the finest Airsrteam Crafstmen around will be there and he's a very nice guy and will answer all your resto questions.

We ALWAYS have too much food and Everybody is welcome to drop by. Don't be shy come on by. We'll be waiting for you.

Check out the Rally thread at: Supporting Four Corners Rally from Afar.
I'd rather be boon docking in the desert.

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CA 4

Yes, we have courtesy parking for you. About an hour North of Los Angeles.
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Old 02-11-2007, 05:36 PM   #9
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The outside panels are structural, as are solid bucked rivets. If you are replacing a outside panel, I'd buck them. However, many do use Olympics for outside panels. Some argue one way, others the other! Look at my December 29th, 2005 post on our blog:

Sweet Sovereign of the Road

Good luck. Are you sure that is a 1957 as it does not have 13 panels? I know 57 - 58 was the cross over year. Cool trailer.

Rob, Zoe', Stanton, Bryce, Braedon and Finn Baker
Do you Listen to the
Plymouth, NY 13832
Courtesy parking
Flag Pole Holders -

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Old 02-12-2007, 10:04 PM   #10
Rivet Master
1960 24' Tradewind
santa barbara , California
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Im with Rob on this also ,if your interior panels are removed ,buck rivits are
what you want to use .Two man project ,air hammer with correct rivit bit
and a backing bar to put up againts the rivit from the inside as its hammered by your air hammer with rivit driver bit.Olympic rivits are good as well ,easier
one person job ,but the buck rivits are solid and much stronger .some definate pratice on your old section would be good ,drill out a few old rivits
and buck some new ones in place ,if you slip off the rivit or somthing while
its driven ,it wont wreck you new panel ,you can do a whole bunch and get
ready for your new panel install .

Scott of scottanlily
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Old 02-13-2007, 01:12 PM   #11
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Arvada , Colorado
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solid rivets

The cost to you to buy the minimun tools to install solid rivets is as follows:
All tools available at Brown Aviation Tool Supply Co.

T-3X Taylor rivet gun 149.95
1002-93 5/32 rivet set 6.95
K-5/32 clecos 50 ea 20.00
K-200 cleco pliers 4.95
BB29 bucking bar 17.95

Rivets can be purchused here Genuine Aircraft Hardware Co.
MS20470AD5-5 and -6 around 20.00/pound. They do sell in 1/4 pound increments.

I hope that this inforamation helps.
You might be able to find used or surplus in the Long Beach area where Douglas used to be and Boeing is now. Gulfstream is also there and you might be able to find someone there to point you in the right direction for used tools.

Genuine Aircraft hardware is pretty close to you. I'm not totally sure but I think they are in Ventura or Santa Barbara and they also carry some tooling.
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