View Poll Results: How do you trailer?
Can see through the trailer while driving 3 37.50%
Windows obstructed - can't see through 5 62.50%
Voters: 8. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-14-2003, 09:31 PM   #1
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Question Front & rear windows clear or covered?

Have you ever wondered why some of the vintage AS trailers have such large windows in the rear bath? I read somewhere that Wally Byam wanted to be able to look through the trailer to see what was happening inside and also to be able to see the road directly behind the trailer while traveling. How do you travel? With the windows unobstructed or otherwise? Here's a photo I took on a recent trip to demonstrate what I mean. If you look through the back window of my '66 GT you can see a mountain as well as the road behind. The photo picked up a lot of glare -- the view is actually much better. There have been a number of times this arrangement has allowed me to see that I forgot to secure a door or cupboard and stop to secure it before everything fell out.
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Old 07-14-2003, 10:09 PM   #2
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2018 Interstate Grand Tour Ext
Austin (Hays County) , Texas
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Not much chance

With tinted windows, a tinted stone guard in front, and an offset back window, there is not much chance of detecting anything short of someone's high beams through the trailer.
John W. Irwin
2018 Interstate GT, "Sabre-Dog V"
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Old 07-14-2003, 10:29 PM   #3
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I thought about tinting my MH windows, but decided against it because then I wouldn't be able to get that 'panoramic' view the owner's manual refers to. Also, it would be tough to see out the back (no camera) at night.
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Old 07-14-2003, 10:41 PM   #4
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Right now...we can see through. But that's only because we have the rock guard off during polishing. I like it, although we will probably put the rock guard back on...I'd rather arrive with our window intact and use the mirrors. Can't have it both ways ~

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Old 07-15-2003, 05:54 AM   #5
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Front & rear windows clear or covered?

Both of my coaches have the see-through design, and that is a BIG factor in my satisfaction with my coaches. On the Overlander, I have never had a shattered front window, however, the original front window was cracked when I purchased the trailer. Rather than replace with plain flat glass as it had from the factory, I chose to go with Lexan - - this was over five years ago and has been entirely satisfactory.

Given the cost of replacing the "wing-windows" on the Minuet, I made a concession and had a rock guard installed. Eventually, the center section of the unit will have its solar grey tinted Plexiglass replaced with clear Lexan to regain the see-through design. The plus with the Minuet is that it is narrower than the Airstream so it is easy to see around the trailer even with the CIPA slip-on mirrors on my Suburban that are of little use with the Airstream (I usually use McKesh mirrors with both the Suburban and Cadillac).

On a trailer with either "wing-windows" in the front or the near irreplaceable Corning windows ('66-'68), I can see a need, if not necessity, for a rock guard. On the Vintage trailers with a single, flat glass, front window; my choice is to go without a front rock guard and maintain my coach's see-through design. For me, the Lexan replacement for the front glass has worked out very well.

After having the advantage of the "see-through" design, it was a little disconcerting when I first towed the Overlander with the Cadillac. The Cadillac, or just about any automobile for that matter, sits too low to take advantage of the see-through design so all you get to see in the interior rear-view mirror are the LP tanks. It was even a bit more disconcerting the first time I towed the Minuet with the Suburban after the front rock guard was installed.

Kevin D. Allen
WBCCI (Lifetime Member)/VAC/Free Wheelers #6359
AIR #827
1964 Overlander International/1999 GMC K2500 Suburban (7400 VORTEC/4.11 Differentials)
1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre/1975 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible (8.2 Liter V8/2.70 Final Drive)
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Old 07-15-2003, 06:12 AM   #6
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I don't really see much advantage to being able to see thru the coach, maybe to see if there is an 18-wheeler riding your butt or to see the headlights following at night. It's not like it's that useful for backing it up. Didn't Wally basically put the big rear window being pioneer in safety, as an emergency escape?

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Old 07-15-2003, 07:49 AM   #7
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I think WB just wanted to enjoy the scenery while on the throne
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Old 07-15-2003, 09:07 AM   #8
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Bite Your Tongue!!!

The GREAT ONE never had to use the "throne."
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Old 07-15-2003, 10:35 PM   #9
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Question Window size a mystery

I can't imagine using the back window in a real emergency -- at least not when it's closed. I'd have to crank open the three latches and then crank up the glass pane and then get through the screen just to get out. Okay, I suppose I'd just kick it out if I was really in a hurry (assuming that would work). Anyway, I think the emergency escape that Wally is credited with was the large hatch big enough to stand up through the roof. But that was most likely for sight seeing, not safety.

It's the size of the windows that is a mystery to me. The back one needs to be big to use it for seeing through from the front. If it wasn't designed for that purpose then wasn't it made a tad big, considering that usually the bath is there? My neighbors (who all own SOB) have teased me often about that, saying that Airstreamers must be exhibitionists.

The front window on the other hand could've been made half the size to still work as an aid for seeing through the trailer. So, I suppose the size of the front is more for the view outside when you're inside. Does that make any sense? Or maybe it doesn't have anything to do with the view, but instead it's all about ventilation.
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Old 07-15-2003, 10:48 PM   #10
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63: I love it

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