Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 04-08-2018, 09:14 PM   #1
Rivet Master
 
Soyboy's Avatar

 
1999 28' Excella
Frederick , Maryland
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 738
Images: 50
Who Has An Older AS with Orig AC / Fridge?.

Our '99 is coming up on 20 years old. I see folks with way newer Airstreams commenting about new AC/Fridges. Our originals (knock wood) are still going strong. How about yours? How old? Problem free? I think my only problem was that I needed a new control board (put in a dinosaur) for the fridge after we bought the trailer in 2010.

KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK LOL
__________________

__________________
1999 28' Safari
2012 F150 Platinum Max Tow 7650 GVWR 3.73 Elec. Locking Diff.(Prev 2003 Dmax).
Honda EU2000i, Equalizer Hitch
AM Solar Panels 150W - 2 Trojan T 105 6V Batteries

KC3MAP

On internet forums, please research and separate the wheat from the chaff (including mine!)
Soyboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2018, 09:32 PM   #2
Overland Adventurer
 
AtomicNo13's Avatar
 
1991 34' Excella
2009 34' Panamerica
Telluride , Colorado
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 2,473
The original penguin I on my 91 classic had to be replaced just last season. The blower motor had no replacement. Otherwise it was meat locker cold. My newer, bigger penguin II isn't nearly as cold or able to distribute the sir as well.
__________________

AtomicNo13 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2018, 10:25 PM   #3
cwf
Rivet Master
 
cwf's Avatar
 
1999 34' Excella
Currently Looking...
Hillsboro , Texas
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 6,282
Images: 2
Our original 1999 working better than the 4 year old Penguin
__________________
Peace and Blessings..
Channing
WBCCI# 30676
cwf is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2018, 10:36 PM   #4
Rivet Master
 
nickclifford's Avatar
 
1972 31' Sovereign
Currently Looking...
felton , California
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 644
Images: 1
1972 & still working, we camped in the Cali gold country town of Nevada city last Labor Day, we had shade, but it was 100 ... we managed to keep trailer about 80 inside, but can't imagine much good if we'd been in full sunlight. I'm curious how newer units perform like that? We have a 30' trailer, just one unit of course .. keep (rear bathroom) door closed.
nickclifford is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2018, 11:15 PM   #5
CRH
Rivet Master
 
1995 25' Excella
xxxxx , xxxxxx
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 1,722
Both are original in my 1995
CRH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-09-2018, 09:07 AM   #6
4 Rivet Member
 
1976 31' Excella 500
Chappell Hill , Texas
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 379
Images: 1
1976 original Armstrong A/C. I changed the compressor start capacitor last year. The rest is original.
tbashin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-09-2018, 09:20 AM   #7
Rivet Master
 
kdickinson's Avatar
 
Currently Looking...
Taos , New Mexico
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 566
The Dometic in our 69 was still running fine but the plastic on the inside was literally disintegrating right along with the original carpet and formica and, probably the stove/oven. Furnace, water heater, A/C, water pump, water lines have already been replaced. Each of these items worked for us with no complaint for nearly 50 years (single family trailer) and the poor Dometic owed us not a single thing. So - it is being replaced with a new unit - bigger, I think it will have a door light in it, and I just need to switch it to "propane" instead of, well I won't go into detail of how I used to have to light the pilot on that thing without lighting everything on fire ...
kdickinson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-09-2018, 09:24 AM   #8
1 Rivet Member
 
1958 22' Caravanner
Bath , New York
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 5
Who Has An Older AS with Orig AC/Fridge?

1958 22' Caravanner with International Pack, no AC but original Dometic MKT 500 that works like a charm. You folks with "new" Airstreams (70s, 80s, 90s, 2000s) have a while to go but if you take care of your appliances, they will last. Serial No. 0-9390
pitajey45 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-09-2018, 09:29 AM   #9
1 Rivet Member
 
1976 Argosy 24
Excelsior , Minnesota
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 11
Old appliances

1976 Argosy 24'. Have owned it since '77. Original fridge, oven, stove top, air conditioner. Newer hot water heater due to accident about 30 years ago, new water pump due to plastic warping during storage, newer inverter due to rodent urine ruining original.

Been from Canada to Mexico, housed in Colorado and Minnesota.

Did have oven and stove top powder coated due to some rust blooms, and repainted some of fridge inside lower attachment due to rust.

BTW - we live in a 90 year old house with original hot water heating (still is ~90% efficient), knob and tube wiring with fuses for protection, original double hung windows with individual screens and storm windows for each one, original toilet fixtures. We must take care of some of the lasting things well.

Hope this helps.
Steve Finch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-09-2018, 09:33 AM   #10
2 Rivet Member
 
Rockton , Illinois
Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 90
Blog Entries: 1
Ac

My 69 AC in my Sovereign stills works with a little help of the fan. She’s getting service done soon though. What a war bird it is.

Jbknowso
jbknowso is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-09-2018, 10:18 AM   #11
1 Rivet Member
 
1996 25' Excella
Port Stanley , Ontario
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 16
Blog Entries: 1
We have a '96 Classic with original AC and fridge. Still going strong and we use the trailer 3-5 months per year. We start the units gently when ready to use and increase as required.
Aprilrivet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-09-2018, 10:35 AM   #12
S/O#080
 
Tschupp's Avatar
 
2006 30' Classic S/O
Tucson , Arizona
Join Date: Aug 2017
Posts: 63
My 2006 Classic just got a new AC last week. The fridge is original and works well.
Tschupp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-09-2018, 10:48 AM   #13
4 Rivet Member
 
Nomad518's Avatar
 
2001 25' Safari
Ridgefield , Washington
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 296
Our 2001 70th Anniversary Safari still has the original AC and fridge. The AC had a small leak in the condensation collection pan that caused it to drip on the dinette table but only during heavy rain (common here in the Pacific Northwest). I had that fixed last year and it works like a charm. Seems quieter than newer AC systems too. The fridge needed a little attention a couple of years ago when the igniter wouldn’t work if the outside temperature was below 50 degrees. Simple fix and now it works like a charm too.
Nomad518 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-09-2018, 11:41 AM   #14
Rivet Master
 
Soyboy's Avatar

 
1999 28' Excella
Frederick , Maryland
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 738
Images: 50
Wow, I am amazed at how long some of these have been in use! As the OP, I didn't expect to see this. I guess the older ones like so many things of that age were built to a purpose, not so much to a price, as things today seem to be. Maybe there is hope for mine, but I'm still knocking wood LOL.
__________________
1999 28' Safari
2012 F150 Platinum Max Tow 7650 GVWR 3.73 Elec. Locking Diff.(Prev 2003 Dmax).
Honda EU2000i, Equalizer Hitch
AM Solar Panels 150W - 2 Trojan T 105 6V Batteries

KC3MAP

On internet forums, please research and separate the wheat from the chaff (including mine!)
Soyboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-09-2018, 12:47 PM   #15
Rivet Master
 
TG Twinkie's Avatar
 
1974 Argosy 26
Morrill , Nebraska
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 5,873
Images: 2
Blog Entries: 5
'74 Argosy 26'. Original A/C and refer still working.
__________________
Knowledge: "A gift to be shared. A treasure to receive."
TG Twinkie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-09-2018, 12:47 PM   #16
4 Rivet Member
 
1973 31' Sovereign
1978 Argosy 30
1985 31' Excella
Sacramento , California
Join Date: Nov 2016
Posts: 323
Interesting... I bought a 1985 used.. and the refrig RM 1303 was barely working. I knew nothing about them except for the cooling process.. I checked the heat and it was within specs but on hot days the refrig just was not keeping the bottom section at 34-38 deg.

I talked to several of the old timers who said that it was the boiler unit. Seem dometic is not kidding when they want them level to work.

I was surprised to hear that mine was typical of a refrig which was not run level and probably had a clogged boiler tube.
Now before you say ok these are supposed to last a lifetime... wrong. According to the old timers who knew them well... The day that you fire 'em up they are dated... by that they ment that the fluids inside are conten breaking down. Not that they are not nasty.. and will start corrosion from the inside out... (one reason why they put cormate in the mix is to keep the fluids from eating the metal from the inside of the tubes)

Eventually its going to happen.. but they said the major problem with them is the boiler tube.. a small tube inside that boils away the liquids (where you apply the heat)
At this point... the cormate in the solution starts crystalizing as heat is applied.

If you allow it to run longer than 30 min in a parking lot off level.. you can shorten the time and destroy the refrig. (although the manufactures say that they now have made a better refrig .. supposedly it works better... and damage won't occure... but if you check they still are around 30 min off level and you toast the refrig. )

A good indicator that the refrig is loosing it ... is when you find out that on warmer days its just not cooling as well as it did when it was new... (even if you do keep it level)

So yes they do wear out.. or Age out...

I was suprised to hear that you can damage them also by letting them sit and not use them also. (as corrosion and seperation of the fluids start to occur.. )

So your between a rock and a hard spot... seems if you keep 'em level.. and use them they will last the longest.

As to age vs the elect ones.. the absorbant refrig is still better than the electric compressor ones... according to the oldies...

Their are several places that re-manufacture cooling units that can be replaced in the old dometic refrig...

is it worth it.. yes... as they are about 1/3 the price of a new refrig... and the fact that dometic and other quit making the physical size in a replacement. So keeping the old box and replacing the cooling unit.. is a better way to go...

Only problem I found was that the places that sell the repaird cooling units... DIDN'T know how to fit the new one into the old box... Their was a lot of 'short cuts' they wanted you to make it simple... which it is .. if you have done it before... but a lot of the cooling units get damaged by the delivery service.. who is not resposnable for the way it gets to you all bent up...

Lost of good info on Utube... but we found that after being advised by some of the oldies... we had little or no problems... and it ended up taking about 2 hours to change them out.

So now ours is perking along almost better than advertised... we get -5 in the freezer and 34 in the box... when the temp is 85+ outside... and yes we also did the cooling fan with a thermostat... but so far the fan has not come on.. unless we force it .. so it seems its working good

while we were at it the oldies said that the insulation around the box was not as good as it could be... expec'ly the space at the top and sides... So we put good old pink fiberglass in around it.. and it seems all is cool in the airstream once again.

So that is the story on ours... oh and the oldies say that if you get 5-7 years out of the dometic or norcold 'gas' your doing good... but they also said that a lot of the older units have been around for 10-20 years... I personally am shooting for the 10 year mark with my overhauled cooling unit.. as the box is in great shape...

pix of adding fiberglass to the empty space around the box... oh to to get the refrig back in.. you use cardboard like a shoe horn to keep the refrig from tearing it up going in...

good luck... and no we don't keep it lit or on elect on the road... only after we have stopped and had level'ed the refrig out..

OH and one other thing.. we found that the frig to the trailer floor.. i.e outside level indicators.. were off... we had to shim the refrig to make it match the trailer frame/floor... might want to check yours.. once done... quick and easy to level the whole trailer at one time.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	GMA_1528.JPG
Views:	47
Size:	112.1 KB
ID:	308266   Click image for larger version

Name:	GMA_1529.JPG
Views:	47
Size:	112.9 KB
ID:	308267  

Click image for larger version

Name:	GMA_1530.JPG
Views:	48
Size:	112.9 KB
ID:	308268   Click image for larger version

Name:	GMA_1862.JPG
Views:	50
Size:	112.6 KB
ID:	308269  

GM Airstream is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-09-2018, 01:48 PM   #17
2 Rivet Member
 
1993 34' Excella
Randolph , Vermont
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 34
94 Excella 1000 with both still running. Fingers crossed, used alot..ten yrs full timing.
forfulltimin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-2018, 02:20 PM   #18
1 Rivet Member
 
1970 25' Caravanner
Wichita Falls , Texas
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Soyboy View Post
Our '99 is coming up on 20 years old. I see folks with way newer Airstreams commenting about new AC/Fridges. Our originals (knock wood) are still going strong. How about yours? How old? Problem free? I think my only problem was that I needed a new control board (put in a dinosaur) for the fridge after we bought the trailer in 2010.

KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK LOL
1970 Caravanner, original AC works fine, fridge works fine on propane (wont work on electric). Put new 110 convertor in couple of years ago. New water pump a few years ago, leak in fresh water tank limits capacity to 8gal, original blackwater tank good, my rule "plan ahead".
Calltheball is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2018, 09:50 PM   #19
4 Rivet Member
 
1973 31' Sovereign
1978 Argosy 30
1985 31' Excella
Sacramento , California
Join Date: Nov 2016
Posts: 323
Well.... I have the new 1985... excella... and I found that how they are taken care of deteremines the length that the appliances will last...

In my case... the PO (0nly one year owned) who flipped the trailer... let it run off level... and probaby took out the refrig... but, for a mer 400 bux... we got a new cooling unit and the refrig is back up and going strong.. matter of fact.. on the last campout with some friends... ours stay'ed much cooler than theirs... in the same climate...

I did improve the effecency of the refrig by putting dual fans on the back side... that help move air from the bottom out the top.. but we also put the temp switch and seperate fan switches... and so far the fans never have come on... and so we leave the switches off...

Airstream didn't do a good job of putting the refrigs in.. according to the manufacture... they left a lot to be desired in the insulation dept... So we followed the manufactures suggestions and put fiberglass insulation around the 3 sides... of the box. I think I posted a pix of that before we put the refrig with the new cooling unit in. (if not I included it here too)...

Believe me when I say that the manufacture of the refrig was right... IT DID MAKE A HUGE DIFFERENCE ... the top of the frig was the most important.. and now it seems to keep it cool much faster too...

As to the electronics... techno has come a long way from 85... and so new better control boards in the aftermarket area replace the old ones... even if they still are working... just don't want anything to spoil the vacation.

The heater was the second biggest fixit that we had to do... their we found that the little mud dappers made a new home... inside the thing.. so we had to overhaul it... works great now.. but we did put a new motor and valve in it... again the old one worked but new just means it will go the distance again while I own the beast...

One other thing that did go out.. was the door bell... yep.. someone wired the thing wrong and the fuse that was supposed to protect it... well it wasn't in the wireing... so we made our own.. and replaced the melted door bell with the local box store brand... for pennies on the buck according to A/S

And we had to replace the propane regulator.. again sitting didn't help it.. and so we had to change its location too... as we didn't want the new lines being high pressure from the tanks to the old regulator location... again... no sense in tempting fate... so we got a new regulator.. made up a bracket from early A/S parts... and now good to go... while all this happend because we had to change the propane tanks shut off valves to the newer regulated ones... so while we were their... made the upgrade...

Otherwise we replaced the water pump... with new... because it was orginl. and changed the radio out for a new CD one...

Yep now we have a brand new 1985 that we think is much better than the new ones... and in the end... cheaper too.. as we figure we put about 25K into this one... (includes purchase) added new 16 inch tires and rims... and went on from their... vs spending 150K for a new one that our friends who went that way... are visiting the dealership at least 3 to 4 time the last year... Their whole refrig went out... and had to wait almost 4 months for the replacement... after only using it for 3 weeks... go figure...

So do I recommend that you replace the cooling unit.. indeed.. not a hard job.. but finding someone who knows how is the tough part... the old 1300 ref is not a easy thing if you follow the suppliers video on youtube... they are built different and so we had to learn how to put the new unit in... and seal it up... (want to know how)... being a engineer.. we figured that if someone built it.. we should be able to take it apart and put it back again... and we did... but we mocked it up 3 times to get 'er right...

The rest of the refrig is in pretty good shape... so we figured instead of reaming out the place it lives.. we would replace the cooling unit that was damaged from sitting and off level operation... yes we looked at the elect ones... but after visiting someone that had done it.. found that the old gas/elec was a better idea due to vibration and noise... and longivity when boondocking... them old engineers knew what they were doing when they put them in the trailers...

would I do it again.. yes if the interior of the refrig is in good shape... as now we know how... and when we did it.. only took 3 hours to get the old one out. and new one back in with the new insulation to boot... but the go for factor .. can put a dent in the time you spend doing it... However, its about 1/3 the cost for a new one... and why just junk something that can be repaired... grin..
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	GMA_1526a.JPG
Views:	43
Size:	170.8 KB
ID:	309160   Click image for larger version

Name:	GMA_1527a.JPG
Views:	44
Size:	73.2 KB
ID:	309161  

Click image for larger version

Name:	GMA_1529.JPG
Views:	43
Size:	112.9 KB
ID:	309162   Click image for larger version

Name:	GMA_1530.JPG
Views:	45
Size:	112.9 KB
ID:	309163  

__________________

GM Airstream is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Older G.E. Fridge BambiTex Refrigerators 11 02-24-2015 02:56 PM
Orig.Vent Pipe Covers - Still Available? Creampuff Roof Vents, Skylights & Fans 2 07-24-2014 05:50 PM
Airstream Classic 350 LE Motor Home 1992 Orig. Owner eBay Watch Airstreams on eBay 0 09-15-2009 06:00 AM
1977 AIRSTREAM ARGOSY 20’ Motorhome 39K all orig RARE!! eBay Watch Airstreams on eBay 0 06-14-2009 03:10 PM


Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Airstream, Inc. or any of its affiliates. Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:47 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.