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Old 03-09-2012, 07:18 PM   #1
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What will it take to fix this?

How do I repair a gash like this, or how much should I expect to pay?


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Old 03-09-2012, 07:21 PM   #2
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I don't know about cost, but you will need a least one new section.
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Old 03-09-2012, 07:24 PM   #3
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... probably three. Do you have any photos from further back?
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:12 PM   #4
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I'd bet on three panels on the outside. You may also need one on the inside. If you take it to Jackson Center I'd guess about $1400 per panel. $5600 total.

If you're insured they may total the unit for that much damage depending on the year of the Airstream.

You MIGHT, repeat might find another wrecked unit with the front segments intact - but mating them together isn't all that easy. Rivet holes are drilled by hand and won't match up between one unit and another. If this were even possible, you'd have to replace the whole front end (at least all 5 curved segments) or even include the bottom segments as well. I'd guess you'd need to replace the rib where the sections join, then spend a lot of time carefully sealing the seam while joining the whole shebang together.

Sorry about your damage. Paula
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:14 PM   #5
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I hope I don't need three!
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:19 PM   #6
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I hope I don't need three!
Ball park cost is about $1200.00.

Those old segments were all sold to us many years ago, by Airstream.

Andy
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Old 03-09-2012, 10:00 PM   #7
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I'm afraid it will be 3.
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Old 03-09-2012, 11:57 PM   #8
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This older lady (trailer) is 48 years old. I would say that if the panel with the gash in it were replaced that it would be good enough even though the adjacent panels are not perfect.

Dan
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Old 03-10-2012, 07:48 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by TouringDan
This older lady (trailer) is 48 years old. I would say that if the panel with the gash in it were replaced that it would be good enough even though the adjacent panels are not perfect.

Dan
Agreed, I am not looking for perfection right now I just want to get it sealed up. Is it at all possible to pull the dent out, re rivet the panels, and patch the gash for now with an overlay? I understand this won't look good, possibly hideous. Is it doable?

Also, does anyone know a good repair shop in Omaha, NE?
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Old 03-10-2012, 10:39 AM   #10
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I would first see if I drilled some holes in the area that is pushed in, then screw some sheet metal screws into the holes with the heads above the surface. Get hold of the heads of the screws and pull as much of the damaged area out as possible. You may even be able to re install some of the rivets along the seam on the piece to the left. Put sealant along that seam before riveting. If you are successful at pulling most of the dent out you may be able to make a patch to prevent moisture from entering.
Once you get the area somewhat pulled out remove the screws and make a patch to cover the area where the holes are along with covering the tear in the skin.
I don't think you could do any further damage by trying it.
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Old 03-10-2012, 10:54 AM   #11
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Is the interior endcap still in place? Is the window frame pushed in and distorted also? It is my experience on aircraft that you remove the obvious damage first and relieve the internal stresses in the adjoining structure before you determine how much you really need to repair or replace. As I see it the single panel replacement is a given, the others to be determined later.
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Old 03-10-2012, 10:58 AM   #12
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Front Panels

Hello all. I had two of the front panels replaced, at P&S in Ohio, last year and they were $1,200 each installed.
Happy camping nm1oqrz
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Old 03-10-2012, 01:09 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by nm1oqrz
Hello all. I had two of the front panels replaced, at P&S in Ohio, last year and they were $1,200 each installed.
Happy camping nm1oqrz
The interior shell is still in place and in good shape. The window and panels around the two damaged ones seem to be in good shape. Did the $1200 include materials? Did they have to remove the interior shell or did you do that?

I am in Omaha, does anyone know a good shop close or should I go to the dealer in DesMoines which is about 2.5 hours away.

Thanks for all the input. I think I will need to see what inland marine has for parts. Keep the thoughts coming!
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Old 03-10-2012, 11:25 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by TG Twinkie View Post
I would first see if I drilled some holes in the area that is pushed in, then screw some sheet metal screws into the holes with the heads above the surface. Get hold of the heads of the screws and pull as much of the damaged area out as possible. You may even be able to re install some of the rivets along the seam on the piece to the left. Put sealant along that seam before riveting. If you are successful at pulling most of the dent out you may be able to make a patch to prevent moisture from entering.
Once you get the area somewhat pulled out remove the screws and make a patch to cover the area where the holes are along with covering the tear in the skin.
I don't think you could do any further damage by trying it.
Sorry - I disagree with this - you'll just add more damage and holes. This technique will work on a car with steel panels. On aluminum, you'll just distort it in the other direction. If there's a cabinet inside you could remove it and push the segments out from inside. A soft basketball has been used with success by some.

The two panels on the side of the one that looks like it took a 2 x 6 through it - First look at the rivet holes. If a lot of them are pulled into ovals or split to the edge, then you'll never stop the leaking unless you use giant rivets or replace the panels. For a temporary fix you could mush the panels into roughly the right shape and overlay a patch where the hole is. (for a very temporary patch, get some aluminum tape (next to the cloth duct tape in the big box hardware stores and just tape it over. That could get you to Jackson Center for a prettier repair. THECATSANDI made an epic trip there after being hit by a state trooper!

Paula
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Old 03-11-2012, 10:25 AM   #15
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So what happened to it or did it come that way to you?

Shari
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Old 03-11-2012, 04:31 PM   #16
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So what happened to it or did it come that way to you?

Shari
I bought it like that! A flying canoe hit it.
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Old 03-11-2012, 05:55 PM   #17
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What will it take to fix this?

Greetings Olivebranch!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Olivebranch View Post
Agreed, I am not looking for perfection right now I just want to get it sealed up. Is it at all possible to pull the dent out, re rivet the panels, and patch the gash for now with an overlay? I understand this won't look good, possibly hideous. Is it doable?

Also, does anyone know a good repair shop in Omaha, NE?
I don't know of a facility in Omaha, but you are only about 260 miles from a shop with 50+ years of experience repairing Airstreams. They were an Airstream dealer until a few years ago and so far as I know are still an Airstream Authorized Sevice Center. The shop that I am referring to is Ace Fogdall RV in Cedar Falls, Iowa. I have trusted their shop for any kind of major repair that either my Argosy or Airstream has needed since aquiring my Overlander in 1995 . . . . including such things as repairing rear end separation . . . . axle replacelemt . . . air conditioning installation/replacement. . . . exterior panel replacement . . . . refrigerator replacement. . . . water heater replacement. . . etc. They do quality work and won't attempt a repair if they know that the result won't be satisfactory, and I don't know if that curved front panel can be successfully repaired with an overlay as I suspect that it would be difficult to make the repair waterproof.

Good luck with your investigation!

Kevin
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Old 03-11-2012, 07:02 PM   #18
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Thanks Kevin, that is helpful I will look those guys up.
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