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Old 05-25-2020, 11:38 AM   #1
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1968 26' Overlander
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Worried about buying a polished airstream

Weíve found an airstream that has the floor plan we want, in the price range we can afford. This would be our 4th airstream. Itís polished to a gorgeous shine but that is terrifying. We donít have an enclosed storage area for it; we could modify our carport to accommodate it. But Iíve read that once itís polished, itís needs to be repolished every two years and washed after every use. We have 3 kids and own a business and that sounds like something we could probably not commit to. What has been your experience with a high shine polish? Goodness knows itís beautiful, but Iím just not sure itís worth the effort.
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Old 05-25-2020, 11:44 AM   #2
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I had a highly polished Airstream. I polished it every year, a section at a time. Two years would have been too long between polish jobs.
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Old 05-26-2020, 09:40 AM   #3
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Another option is to let the polish age normally. Over time it will age to a dull but lovely patina. Because it was recently polished each segment and panel will age at the same rate. Shiny is awesome but I think the rich flat color of a vintage trailer is beautiful.
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Old 05-26-2020, 10:16 AM   #4
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Sorry, But once polished and not "re-coated" you should plan on continuing with subsequent re-polishes. That's the trail you'll be on.
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Old 05-28-2020, 05:39 AM   #5
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Is there anything that can be done between polishing to extend the life? We still have 3 kids and run a business and aren't great about finishing projects. Luckily, I'm very self aware!
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Old 05-28-2020, 05:55 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Janet H View Post
Another option is to let the polish age normally. Over time it will age to a dull but lovely patina. Because it was recently polished each segment and panel will age at the same rate. Shiny is awesome but I think the rich flat color of a vintage trailer is beautiful.
^
X2

We thought about polishing our '63...but never got around to it.

Bob
🇺🇸

I believe it aged pretty well...at 18 Seasons.
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Old 05-28-2020, 07:26 AM   #7
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You can let the polishing go and over time the shine will fade to a gray patina - if you want to keep the shine you can have it clear coated and it will last for many years - whatever you decide you should keep it washed and clean - but thatís any trailer :-)
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Old 05-28-2020, 08:53 AM   #8
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If you like the polished look and want to maintain it (but don't have the time or inclination to do it yourself), see if there's anyone locally who does that sort of thing, and work a polish every 3-4 years into the total cost of ownership. In my area, there's a crew that polishes tanker trucks, trailers, etc., and their prices are pretty reasonable.

But if you don't care so much about maintaining the perfect shine ... don't!

When we bought our '65 GT 13 years ago, it was highly polished. For the first five or so years, we kept it outside and only washed it as needed.

We then built a new house and garage with space for the trailer inside, which helps a lot, but we still haven't re-polished it in all that time. It's definitely not as shiny as it was, but it still looks great ... You can definitely tell it's a polished trailer, and hasn't mellowed to a dull gray at all. I think the middle ground is often a good place to be ... I'll probably spring for a polish later this year as part of other maintenance I'll be doing on her. But when she starts to fade ever so slightly again, I won't sweat it ...

I will say this: Having seen what happens to trailers left outside, unprotected, I would urge you to find a way to squeeze it under a carport if at all possible. Finding cover has made a world of difference for our trailer, and greatly reduced maintenance of all sorts, shine notwithstanding. Good luck!
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Old 05-28-2020, 09:52 AM   #9
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Thatís correct - if you can garage the trailer the polish will last many years
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Old 06-06-2020, 05:05 PM   #10
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Our plan is to build a carport for it. We have the perfect spot. My husband insists he'll keep up with it, but I think we'd be more inclined to hire someone to do it as needed. Hopefully, keeping it covered will extend that time in between. It sure is pretty!
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