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Old 09-16-2014, 04:24 PM   #1
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Refurbish the 'Airstream' Placard

Is there a thread on how to refurbish the Airstream placard for a 196X ?
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Old 09-16-2014, 04:29 PM   #2
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The PO of my trailer repainted ours by hand, but over the years the paint has faded and worn off again. I think when I get tired of looking at it, I will go with this:

1960s Airstream Plate
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Old 09-16-2014, 04:37 PM   #3
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Wow, was it blue ?

For some reason I was thinking red ?!?!?
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Old 09-16-2014, 04:54 PM   #4
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I did mine this last spring. Replacing would have been easier, but it's buck rivited on and I didn't want to go back with pop rivits.

I polished the whole thing. Then lightly sanded the background with about 400 grit sandpaper. I masked the entire thing with clear packing tape and cut around the letters with an X-acto knife, then peeled away everything that was supposed to be blue. I used Rustoleum Sail Blue spray paint. It seems to match the Airstream color really well. I masked the trailer to about 3 feet beyond the plackard, but got overspray beyond that. I should have masked better. The packing tape didn't seal well around the rivets, so there was paint under the tape. I had to clean that off. It was kind of a pain. So mask extra well around the rivets.

I made a mistake when I did the model sign by the door. The paint says to recoat within one hour or after 48 hours. I didn't read that and came back the next day to recoat. The paint crinkled up badly. I had to clean it all off and start over again. It was quite a mess.
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Old 09-22-2014, 06:43 PM   #5
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Check out a member's thread on her 1963 Overlander. Her screen name is Reinergirl. She does something similar to what you have done. I am inspired by the work she's done on her AS. I am going to try to do this on my 1962 Safari International. I have had success with using Olympic rivets when doing work where I cannot buck rivet. Looks somewhat similar to buck riveting. When I took my 1976 Safari apart, I found that 1/2 of the shell was buck riveted and the other half was Olympic riveted!
Vintage Trailer Supply has just received new 60's Airstream nameplates.
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Old 09-22-2014, 06:52 PM   #6
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Thanks Surfpod

My threads here, starting with post 44.
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f109...ml#post1110414
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Old 09-22-2014, 07:00 PM   #7
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I left mine in place and used clear contact paper to cover the placard after I had cleaned it. I cut out the area with a new blade in my exacto knife leaving the letters covered. I use Krylon paint in a blue that closely matches the original color. I don't remember the exact name but it is obvious which "blue" it is when you go to the store. It has been 4 years and mine still looks good. It would have been a little easier had I taken them off the trailer but I did not want to risk a leak.
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Old 09-22-2014, 07:01 PM   #8
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That is some impressive results! Hmmm, I already have a can of Ford Blue in the shop, maybe this is a winter project I should tackle?
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Old 09-22-2014, 08:11 PM   #9
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Badge Refinishing

I'm not sure if this would work for you but it might. I removed the badges off of our "78" Ambassador to make them more attractive. I started by stripping with Citrus Strip and rubbing letters and frame with fine scratch pad. Then I polished with 3" cotton wheel. Once this was done I sprayed with Rustoleum "Sail Blue", let sit for 15 minutes and then wipe the letters and frame with lacquer thinner. What a difference.

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Old 09-22-2014, 08:48 PM   #10
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You can buy a rubber wheel for your power drill. It looks and feels like a pencil eraser. It works awesome. It takes off decals and paint with no left over scratches.

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Old 09-22-2014, 09:02 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aktundra View Post
Is there a thread on how to refurbish the Airstream placard for a 196X ?
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f4/r...ml#post1444951
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Old 10-09-2014, 12:57 AM   #12
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Did the door placard also have blue background ?
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Old 10-12-2014, 05:07 PM   #13
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On the Motor Homes, these badges are cast aluminum...
As such, they never polish up well, or even retain the polish long.
I had tried polishing after rustoleum satin black, but it did not last or look good after 8 months in the CA sun.

I was told Powdercoating was more durable, so it was time to learn how.
I bought an Eastwood Powdergun and found a used outcast double oven off CL for free!



Test pieces at the ready...
Sandblasted them clean.


Heated them in the oven to 550F to outgas the casting and clean ready for coating.


Hung, and ready for powder..


Here we go..


Brushed off the areas that will be highlighted before it went in the oven..
This makes it a lot easier to finish them later, as the powdercoat is darned tough!
You can see how thick the powdercoat is.


Into the oven they go at 400 to flow out and cure.


After curing they looked like this.



After, the top was sanded with 180 grit sandpaper, it looked like this..



After clearcoating with clear powdercoat they are done..


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Old 10-14-2014, 06:12 AM   #14
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Hey Keyair - you are a river master. Did not know that powder coating worked with aluminum. Great look on refurbishing the logos. I've been wanting to try powder coating some small pieces. Looks like I'm now in the market for a powder coating kit - off to eBay.

ps - I to have an old oven in the back of the shop!
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Old 10-14-2014, 12:18 PM   #15
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Thanks, just trying to give some solutions to this badge finishing problem!
Looks like I messed up with the link to the last image...

Should have been this one.



Powdercoating is kinda fun, and very different to paint.
That badge blue should be easy to find in powder, and a metallic version would look really cool... if not totally original...
Something like this...
Hotcoat Powder Metallic Blue

FYI, I resecured my badges with screws, so I can remove them for skin polishing when it needs a touchup.

Yes, Aluminum is VERY good to powdercoat...
Here are some other Aluminum "Test Pieces" I have done...

Cast Aluminum Alfa Romeo valve covers..


And Airstream stuff I am working on...
Pair of Mickey Thompson cast aluminum valve covers destined for the 454 in the Motorhome.
These were ugly and corroded/stained... required some unrequired holes welded shut too...
End result.


This week I am finishing off one of the cast headlamp covers for the motorhome.
They were "Furry" with corrosion, which is the same issue I had with the badges.
Had to sandblast them a lot to get them ready... so maybe add a media blasting cabinet to you wish list... I LOVE having useful tools in my garage... got mine of CL for $100... just needed some TLC..


Coated with gloss black powder and ready to be cured.



Done, but still working to get the brush finish consistent on the corners of this complex casting before I put the topcoat of clear powder on.
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Old 10-14-2014, 12:23 PM   #16
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Thank you so much for posting the step by step powdercoating process! I have been considering trying this myself. In addition to the Airstream, I have a classic Mustang that has a lot of bits and pieces that could use the powdercoating treatment. I definitly need to get into that!
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Old 10-14-2014, 03:08 PM   #17
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Pleased to help!

Couple of pointers...
You cannot use your food oven... you will not get away with it... the cook will know. Even tho they say is more environmentally friendly than VOC paint, its a bit smelly when curing.

The powder uses static to cling to the part... and so its easy to knock it off, or rub it while transferring to the oven... that has been my biggest issue!

Once its flowed out(400f for 10 mins), and cured(a further 20 mins at 375) it is incredibly tough... I messed up a small steel part(about 2"x 3"), and it took me about 2 hours with aggressive aluminum oxide in my blaster to strip it off!
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Old 10-14-2014, 05:36 PM   #18
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So how much and where do we send our badges to get done? The cook would not only know if I used the food oven but also if I went out and bought everything to do the 5 badges!


Sent from my iPhone using Airstream Forums
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Old 10-14-2014, 06:33 PM   #19
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Dave... You are a powdercoating stalker.... ROFL
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