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Old 11-05-2007, 12:43 AM   #21
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Hi, I think he's talking about the, typically stuck, Fantastic Vent Fan; Not the oven vent. He mentions the smoked cover near the kitchen and the white one in the bedroom area.
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Old 11-05-2007, 01:16 AM   #22
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ah u r right robert....

front fantastic fan...

1. turn power lever from 0 to 1/2/3
2. hit the raise button
3. turn temp setting blue (cooler)
4. be sure hand 'knob' is pushed fully in...

should hear the motor grinding now....

bingo.

IF not working check the fuze, if grinding but not opening check the hand knob or break the stuck rubber seal holding it closed.

spray with silicone lubricant.

cheers
2air'
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Old 11-05-2007, 03:26 AM   #23
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'Sad part about it is, as in my case, you may end up preferring to stay in your Airstream as opposed to your home....I have an Historical home, but I find more peace and tranquility in my 1974 Sovereign.....Perhaps it is because everyone else feels as though the space is 'cramped'. Oh, well, whatever the case, I can escape for a few hours away from high home mortgages, ect., and be thankful for the mansion on wheels that may someday allow me to travel to new places....Only if I win the Lotto of course.....
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Old 11-05-2007, 11:23 AM   #24
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Ahh Arches Nat'l Park, what a beautiful place. My daughter lives in SLC, while visiting her and went to Arches, and the other parks in the area. Hope we will be able to take a trip out there with our AS in the next year or so.

a.d.d that is so funny. I agree with you Gene, I do not know why anyone would want the cloth interior. The aluminum is so much cooler.

I still have about 4 weeks until mine comes in, so in the mean time, I will have to be happy reading the posts of other new AS owners! I am learning about what to look out for though.

Diane
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Old 11-05-2007, 08:49 PM   #25
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We're home and I started thinking about spending the night in the Airstream anyway. I may need therapy. Imeynstein, I understand, we have a log house that I've been finishing for 7 years into our perfect dream home, but the call of aluminum….

We put a medium grade 2" memory foam pad on top of the Airstream one. It was much more comfortable for us and I slept better. Because the foam pad is longer, our feet didn't reach the end as they did without it.

This morning we got everything detached (water, cable, etc.) and hitched up the truck in 55 minutes. No one came along to distract us, so we did it right because the trailer didn't go backwards down the road. I kept the cruise at 65 on I-70 because otherwise I would be going 75. We discovered that 3 showers and dishwashing fills the grey water tank. Now the Safari is sitting out there with the furnace set a 40˚ (digital thermostat is very precise—I checked with another thermometer) to kept things from freezing.

I did mean the Fantastic fan. I'm not sure I know how to use it. It's far easier to hand crank it up anyway, but the motor is important if it rains. I don't have any trouble with the bedroom one though. But, I'd better check the stove fan because I didn't know about tabs, so 2air's confusion from my imprecise wording turned out well because I learned something.

When we got to Sam's Club in Grand Junction for gas, I used my 2' level to check trailer and truck—all bubbles within the inner lines. Trailer ever so slightly low in the front, but within the lines. Truck perfect. That parking lot is so goofy and empties into a traffic circle, it was a challenge, but no trees or stop signs leveled; all nearby cars still have fenders.

Another new experience—Colorado weigh stations say "all towed vehicles". My first thought was to send the "towed vehicle" only because it didn't also say "towing vehicle", but I figured the state wouldn't understand my wordsmithing. We went in, but did we really have to? What do the various states and provinces require? It did weigh all my axles for free, but the numbers went by so fast, I couldn't read them.

Bernermom, there's so much to learn, but by reading these posts and some books, you'll do fine. Of course, if you get a new Tundra and an Equalizer, it'll be even better. After reading some of the horror stories, I was expecting to have the trailer fishtailing down the road, tires blowing out every 5 miles, and generally leaving a path of destruction behind us across the Southwest. We hope to take 10 or 11 days in a couple of weeks, so we still have a chance to mess up.

Gene
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Old 11-09-2007, 06:30 PM   #26
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Today's adventure was replacing a window. When we were coming home a week ago, we stopped for lunch and I opened the door and there was no window on the streetside. It was one of two large windows there.

The rear latch was up, the front was down (open). I remember I had opened that window the evening before for ventilation and was fairly sure I had properly secured it. Maybe not. With the wind blowing in, and possibly a truck sucking it further out, it may have been stressed enough to shatter. I felt sick and then realized I had to tell Barb. She took it well, better than me.

We ordered a new window and it came yesterday. Today we put it in, but it took a lot of time. The new steel channel at the top of the new window would not mate with the aluminum one on the Airstream. I started measuring the new one (it comes bolted to the window ) and it needed some straightening. Once I got it straight, it did fit, but when I tried to close the window, it was binding. Back to the hammer and wood block—I had to straighten the aluminum channel next. I also sprayed silicone on both channels. It went in a little easier, but still binds a bit.

When we went to lock it, I discoved the latch I thought I hadn't secured, was about 3/16" loose when "locked". No wonder it opened—no friction, gravity and road vibration did it. Nice to know I am not a dufus. I repositioned the latch so it would lock properly. Then I checked all the other latches. I called the dealer and am waiting for a response. I am concerned there is too much pressure on the window because it didn't close as freely as the other one does and it might shatter again though the rubber seal should cushion it.

I have no idea who "adjusted" the latch badly, but this is surely a warranty claim. If I designed these windows, the latches would have a more positive locking system. The window would have a metal frame around the glass to strengthen it.

Everything else went so well, so I guess the first shoe has dropped. I have to figure out how to get the duct tape glue off the aluminum. I already tried alcohol, but refrained from acetone. The clearcloat should resist a pretty strong solvent, but I am unsure. On another thread there was a recommendation to use aluminum tape when a window goes, and I'll get some. That stuff is amazing—doesn't leave glue—and also great for ducts and matches the coach. Duct tape isn't much good for ducts, but it was what I could get on the road. We had a garbage bag for the substitute window.

We've also found the obligatory wood shavings in cabinets and some on the dinette cushions. Must be an Airstream trademark. I looked over the roof—no metal shavings I could see. Lots of sealer everywhere. If it ever rains or snows here (we can go months without), we'll find out if they missed some spots. I looked at the clamps (not exactly what they are, but will do) to secure the stove exhaust fan door, and both were unsecured. I don't know whether the dealer left them like that when they tested the fan, or they loosened. They look pretty cheapo.

Now I'm looking for a canopy. I saw a perfect sized one ($650 or so) on the Sam's Club website—wide enough to walk around, various lengths for any size trailer, and it looked silver! I don't think it said what the material was and I don't trust Sam's so far as quality goes. At least I know something similar to what I want is made. I want something that gives me easy access all year long so I can check out things inside and out and protects all sides. That'll save me some money on wheel covers—I need 4 because the Airstream sits north/south and all the wheels get sun.

We were going to take pictures of the window job, but forgot. We have one in the camera taken in red rocks country. We'll have to take more, but are really slow at that. The neigbors have been getting tours and are impressed. A neighbor here is anyone within 5 or 10 miles.

Gene
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Old 11-10-2007, 06:50 PM   #27
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Use good ole' W.D. 40 to remove duct tape glue....It won't damage the skin, and it comes right off....Man, you are not having any good luck.....
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Old 11-11-2007, 01:40 PM   #28
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Thanks, imeynstein. Not only are you responsible for the theory of relativity, but your recommendation for WD 40 worked fine. Before I saw your post I bought some 3M adhesive remover, but when I read the label the contents looked pretty drastic and the warnings made it sound like you couldn't use it on anything except maybe the earth's iron core. WD 40 is pretty benign and effective.

Luck hasn't been all that bad—the window has been the major problem. The dead bold lock is difficult, maybe impossible to lock now. I've realized RV quality control standards are not very high and nowhere near those of the auto industry. It's a bummer, but if we complain a lot the company will notice and so will prospective customers.

If I start finding more stuff, I may not be so calm and philosophical. I'm not ready to lead a caravan with torches and pitchforks to Jackson Center yet.

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Old 11-12-2007, 09:28 AM   #29
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Gene,
Sorry to hear of your troubles. I will make sure I check the window latches when I pick up my new AS in a few weeks.

It is rather disheartening for to hear of such quality issues. It seems to me that AS devotees are willing to overlook quite a bit. Are they covering this under warranty? They certainly should.

But you are right , we need to let the company know our complaints, and if we all speak up, maybe things will get better.

Diane
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Old 11-13-2007, 12:05 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bernermom
Gene,
Sorry to hear of your troubles. I will make sure I check the window latches when I pick up my new AS in a few weeks.

It is rather disheartening for to hear of such quality issues. It seems to me that AS devotees are willing to overlook quite a bit. Are they covering this under warranty? They certainly should.

But you are right , we need to let the company know our complaints, and if we all speak up, maybe things will get better.

Diane
Hi, I think if you read all of Gene's posts you will see most of all of his complaints were due to lack of knowledge of the product he purchased; And the lack of planning on his part to assume that Airstream should have hooks and hangers Etc. At this point we should be reading all of the manuals included with this hand made master piece so we would know how to turn off that $1,000.00 radio if the display bothers you, learn how to open the oven vents, to operate the Fantastic Vent, and how to make that corner bed because you chose that model. So why don't we all line up to picket, complain, and sue Airstream so they will make things better or go out of business? Airstreams will never be perfect, but far better than whatever is in second place. I love my trailer; Was it flawless? no, but that is part of why Airstream comes with a warranty and most RVers are, or learn to be, handy.

"You may not like what I have to say, but it's the truth."
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Old 11-13-2007, 08:25 AM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERTSUNRUS
So why don't we all line up to picket, complain, and sue Airstream so they will make things better or go out of business?
"You may not like what I have to say, but it's the truth."
Never did I suggest we all line up and picket or sue Airstream, nor do I want to put them out of business.

I have recently purchased an AS (not yet delivered) and I am reading a lot of posts about quality issues by many AS owners. That is discouraging to read. I think AS would welcome our feedback if it can help improve the product. I assume that is why they have the link at the top of this website for the customer survey.

Companies spend hugh amounts of money all the time to do research on customer satisfaction. I only suggested that customers let the company know of quality issues to help improve the product.

I am glad to hear that you love your AS, I can't wait for mine to come in and I am sure I will be very happy with it. I do not expect perfection, but I do expect quality that matches the pricetag.

Diane
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Old 11-13-2007, 08:54 AM   #32
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Utah 128 drives better in the dark ...

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Originally Posted by CrawfordGene
... Some of road along the Colorado R[iver] coming to Moab (Utah 128) is above the river, no guardrail and seems to have lanes not much more than 9' at times. No heavy trucks are allowed (30,000 lbs. plus). Another new experience. I'm glad an RV wasn't coming the other way. The Tundra/Safari combination takes the curves as well as the Tundra does alone—and this '07 handles far better than any pickup I've driven. Very little lean on curves, and maybe less so with the Safari. Gene
Hi Gene:

First, congratulations on purchasing your new Airstream Safari! Have you met Just Plain Polly [Pulver], your neighbor in Crawford? She has a 1964 Airstream 19' Globe Trotter (among others) and along with her adult children has attended many of our Rocky Mt. Vintage Airstream Rallys over the past 7 years. Great people.

I just drove Utah 128 at night both ways going to and from Denver to Prescott, AZ. It's easier when you can't see what's not beside you.

The Fiesta Mexicana restrauant in Moab is great and their house Margs are killer. Two nights ago I ate an undercooked wood stove pizza at KAX in Moab and wished I had returned to the mexican restaurant instead.

There is a free RV dump station at the I-70 Rest Area in Fruita, CO. that is very handy and relatively close to your home. Another task to quickly master. The Robert Wood state park in Fruita looked nice on a drive thru, but I spent the night in the rest area, which was quiet in spite of 5 OTR trucks parked there with their engines off.

I and other Denver Unit #24 members look forward to meeting you and Barb on the road in the near future. Welcome to Airstreaming and a bad case of aluminitsis.
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Old 11-13-2007, 12:28 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERTSUNRUS
Hi, I think if you read all of Gene's posts you will see most of all of his complaints were due to lack of knowledge of the product he purchased; And the lack of planning on his part to assume that Airstream should have hooks and hangers Etc. At this point we should be reading all of the manuals included with this hand made master piece so we would know how to turn off that $1,000.00 radio if the display bothers you, learn how to open the oven vents, to operate the Fantastic Vent, and how to make that corner bed because you chose that model. So why don't we all line up to picket, complain, and sue Airstream so they will make things better or go out of business? Airstreams will never be perfect, but far better than whatever is in second place. I love my trailer; Was it flawless? no, but that is part of why Airstream comes with a warranty and most RVers are, or learn to be, handy.

"You may not like what I have to say, but it's the truth."
Well said Bob. Expectation of perfection is not realistic.
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Old 11-13-2007, 01:20 PM   #34
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Quote:
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Well said Bob. Expectation of perfection is not realistic.
Yep, just ask my bride of almost 39 years. It doesn't mean she isn't still trying after all these years, but I keep telling her, when my Mom and Dad passed that ended any warranty claims .

For us we've often found that when buying something new, through our own lack of knowledge and the typical learning curve, we've created issues. Fortunately in most circumstances the dealer has been kind enough to overlook them to a point - but the onus was on us to learn to do it right without causing the problems. This has mostly been with cars/trucks and a few campers.

I highly encourage anyone who is buying a new Airstream to go to the nearest and earliest Forums or WBCCI camp out they can and ask as many questions as they can. There's always a lot of willing folks who have already done the learning curve thing and can get you over a ton of hassles quickly.

I still remember a dealer we used to supply components to who insisted that his salesmen and service people take a trailer off the lot and go camping with any client they'd sold trailers to their first time out. Sometimes it was just one client, other times it could be several, usually a Saturday night near town. They'd set up a deal with the campground as well so if it just didn't work out that one of the dealership folks could be there then the campground host did the "coaching". It got a knowledgeable person out with them to show them how/what to do, in the setting where they'd be using the camper. They had very low warranty/service work issues. Unfortunately that level of service doesn't come around any more.

Barry
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Old 11-13-2007, 03:50 PM   #35
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Question Quality??

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Well said Bob. Expectation of perfection is not realistic.
w) BUT REALISTICALLY SHOULD BE STRIVEN FOR
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Old 11-13-2007, 04:20 PM   #36
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hi folks...

those that have already purchased and are living with the reality of repairs (some of us have been dealing with a/s and the product for 25+years)...

have a different need/view than those that JUST got one and are now getting it (the repair training)...

while those waiting for delivery (bernermom) have still other concerns...

some issues seem important and others not so much, and expectant owners are the most nervous of the lot.

for example the metal shaving topside can lead to scratches when washing,

but pose virtually NO risk to bare feet, human or doggy. it's aluminum shavings and they are relatively soft on the ground.

now INSIDE the unit is another issue (lots of screws and loose rivets in dead spaces) so wear shoes inside!!!

the most important thing for soon2be owners to remember is THIS...

IT ISN'T YOURS till ya sign the paper work.

at that point IT IS YOURS along with ALL of the fit/finish/defects and so on...

so DON'T ACCEPT THE UNIT if it doesn't meet your needs (realistic or not) or has too many issues.

let someone else have that unit! and somebody will want it.

there are folks here (many) who have accepted crappy units, based on "we can fix it" promises from a dealer

for some the fix-it promise did NOT come true.

there are also folks here (not many) who have rejected the order and insisted on a new unit!

wow that takes nuggests, but for them it was the only solution.

IF YOU ACCEPT A UNIT THAT ISN'T RIGHT (in your view ) IT IS YOUR OWN wimpy FAULT!!!

here is my post/disclaimer on READING the many threads on 'fit/finish issues'

http://www.airforums.com/forums/223971-post7.html

now once you've digested that post and signed a waiver...

proceed on to the many threads on these topics; here are some examples...

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f365...ues-27802.html

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f48/...eam-21668.html

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f48/...bad-21921.html

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f142...ity-16147.html

and post YOUR fit/finish/quality bashing or relief that yours isn't buggy, in ANY of them...

now let's let gene get back to fumbling along in the joys of ownership, with the one that followed him home...

it's been fun reading his version of paper training the pooch.

thank you and good nite...

cheers
2air'
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Old 11-13-2007, 04:42 PM   #37
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Stove fan VENT

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrawfordGene
...
Today we discovered:
They really mean it about turning off all the stove burners when lighting the oven pilot light. I can't imagine the gas pressure is so low it makes a difference. As soon as the pilot stays on, then the burners can be (re)lit.
I think the galley fan isn't working right—the button for the motor to raise the cover doesn't seem to work right, but all the controls are so confusing, maybe it's me...

Gene
Gene, go outside and look at the side of the A/S where the stove is. There's a plastic vent there with a flapper cover AND TWO LOCKS... turn the little thingies straight down and when the stove fan is on the vent will open.

Gas pressure low - are you at high altitude? Do you have both tanks open? Sometimes ONE tank won't push enough pressure.

Glad you're having so much fun.

Paula
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Old 11-13-2007, 05:51 PM   #38
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I've owned 3 motorhomes. The last one was $200k and it was far from perfect. I'm not saying you should accept obvious and blatant problems but to bu a trailer or motorhome and not expect some issues is just plain unrealistic. If you enter into it knowing there will be some issues it won't be soooo disappointing.
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Old 11-13-2007, 11:22 PM   #39
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Expectations and reality have a nasty way of meeting each other. I have taken a crash course in reading RV books, reading Forum posts and asking lots of questions. I brought 2 pages of questions on a legal pad to the dealer. Reading is abstract and actually having the unit and using it test the knowledge gained is overwhelming and leads to more learning—for years to come. An entire house compressed into 200 square feet! Quite an accomplishment.

We had a truck camper 5 years ago and the quality was awful—it went back to the manufacturer. We have owned some Toyotas that were perfect and that was a better surprise. From reading the threads on the Forum I knew there could be problems and what we have experienced so far has been much better than some have posted. When problems arise, they are disappointing because this is a luxury product, but what I want is to solve them and move on. I try to write about all this with some humor, but apparently some have missed it and posted a snarky reply. The Safari isn't a disappointment; some items are.

I now have discovered 3 things, none of which were created by lack of knowledge. The window latch was improperly adjusted; the replacement window would not fit in the C channel and I had to straighten its C Channel and then the one on the trailer body. It still isn't quite right, but I talked to a tech at the dealer and he said so long as the window closes and isn't hitting the body, it should be ok. The deadbolt lock won't turn anymore (neither key works well). Graphite didn't solve it. I may remove the lock and see if I can discover why it binds. More likely the lock is faulty though the deadbolt moves back and forth in the cutout in the door. I've never seen a deadbolt with so much play—the cutout in the door is twice as wide as the bolt. Third item—one of the task lights over the dinette is only working intermittently. I haven't had a chance to see what's wrong with that; maybe a bad bulb, loose socket, who knows? The oven wouldn't light because I had a burner on—seems strange to me, but so be it. No harm done. It was in Moab, about 4,100', not particularly high. The exhaust fan door flap was open and probably had been when we left the dealer. The Fantastic fan was the one I couldn't understand—too many controls to master right away. I didn't expect hangers, we forgot them; I think hooks would be a good idea, but we bought some and I hope the Thor CEO reads about it and adds them.

When we picked up the trailer, we received a load of manuals. I wish we had been given them a week before when we made the deal, but we weren't. Forgot to ask. I doubt our experience has been so different from most. Wood shavings are preventable, but are so common I wonder why the factory tolerates it. We simply vacuumed. The dealer prep seems to have been very good and if they missed the badly adjusted latch, I can't expect them to see everything. The latch is the factory's responsibility. The radio/nightlight became funny. Trying to understand all the options on contemporary electronic gear is maddening. There's more to learn than anyone can absorb in an afternoon at the dealer and a few days camped nearby. Some mechanical things break only after several weeks. Maybe only 1 in tens of thousands of deadbolts fail. Maybe 10% do. I wonder if this happens to others?

When we signed the waiver I added that everything was ok "so far as I know at this time." I was told no one ever did that before. They accepted it anyway. I think it tends to waive the waiver and makes it of no practical effect. So, Diane, when you pick yours up, try that and see what they do.

I think when someone picks up a new A/S, no matter what they have learned, no matter how many RV's they have owned, they are excited at now owning an Airstream, they try to be diligent and can't help feeling disappointed when something doesn't work right. We know perfection is unattainable, but human nature intervenes and normal feelings arise. Our Safari is pretty perfect, but not wholly so. Some problems seem to me to be faulty parts or inattentiveness or in the case of the window glass, compounded by a design issue. Some items seem strangely out of date—I read the wheel bearings have to be repacked every 10 K miles—auto ones go far, far longer in the past few decades. I don't get that. I know how to repack wheel bearings though I haven't done it in decades and would rather not. Disappointing? Sure. If it's part of owning an Airstream, I guess I can accept it. I know there are quirky things about an Airstream. I see on the Forum that many experienced owners are confused about what to do, how to do it and make plenty of mistakes figuring it out. For ex., read the threads on how to jack it up and whether to believe the factory instructions or not. It gave me a near headache to try to figure that out, but I will, hopefully not to soon.

Next week we go to Arizona and the Mojave Reserve in Cal. Maybe we'll get to the Pacific depending on whatever. After all, this is an adventure and a challenge. Maybe you'll see me by the road with my 2 tool boxes and a bunch of instruction manuals cursing in several languages, but when I fix it I'll will have won another challenge. Unlike an imperfect car, I can go inside and wash my hands with hot water and have a cold beer. Now, that's great!

I ask myself why I am writing about this adventure. I guess because I like writing, and because maybe others will appreciate our experiences are similar (we are not alone), and maybe someone will learn something. Maybe I'll learn something (like about the exhaust fan thingies).

Fred: Polly Pulver moved to Cedaredge a couple of years ago. I don't think we ever met her, but have heard of her. There's someone in Paonia that has 3, but we don't know who they are.

Gene
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Old 11-14-2007, 04:54 PM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CrawfordGene

I ask myself why I am writing about this adventure. I guess because I like writing, and because maybe others will appreciate our experiences are similar (we are not alone), and maybe someone will learn something. Maybe I'll learn something (like about the exhaust fan thingies).



Gene
YOU ARE DEFINITELY NOT ALONE.............PLEASE KEEP POST'N!!!!
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