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moogie32 01-13-2005 08:01 PM

leaking and broken windows
I'm new at this whole thing, so please be patient.... I just aquired a '67 Safari that had been sitting in the woods for at least 12 years for the cost of hauling it out. As far as I can determine it's in pretty good original shape but it does have its share of issues. I have decided that the first thing I need to do before even trying to get it roadworthy is to deal with its leaking issues. The front window has been totally broken and is missing. I have leaking problems with side windows, the ones with the fixed pane with the movable window over it having the worst leakage. I'm not sure where to begin on the front window. Where does one find a new pane of Corning glass? How does it get adhered to the top frame (since these are frameless windows)? I am assuming that I need new gaskets on everything,but it's not obvious how to replace them....Can anyone point me in the right direction or offer suggestions? Thanks!!!! Diane (moogie32)

eljay 01-13-2005 08:30 PM

Hi Diane! Corning glass is the most difficult to replace. Be prepared to use Lexan until you find someone parting out a trailer who is willing to sell the windows.

In the meantime, I suggest that you get 3m clear packaging/storage tape to seal the leaks. When I taped mine I used three strips of tape to cover the upper hinge beginning nearest the window with one strip, then repeating with another strip placed half the width of the first tape and then the final tape half the width of the second covering the hinge. I also "framed" the sides each window with this same tape. For the window that is missing, I cut a piece of heavy plastic and then used the taping technique I described for all sides of the window. Using this technique water will flow past the hinge and down the contour of the trailer.

Then I recommend covering the vents and everything on top of the trailer with plastic and taping it down in similar manner. When the world warms up you can go about sealing those up properly.

Yep, I am heavy into tape. Wouldn't you hate to open a present I have wrapped? :D And lucky you to have that Safari find you.

j54mark 01-13-2005 08:41 PM

I know only what I have read on these forums. There is quite a bit in the archives about replacing the Corning windows.

However, I would suggest you do a thorough survey before spending any money. You almost certainly are going to find some serious floor rot issues and possibly frame rust. Many people have tackled these problems but not without lots of time or money or both.

The floor is particularly serious in an Airstream as the shell is attached to the floor, not the frame.

Good luck, and here's wishing for the best...


moogie32 01-13-2005 08:57 PM

soggy safari
Thanks for both of your replies! The belly pan is firmly in place so I haven't had a chance (and would be hesitant to to be honest) to look from underneath, but I do have to say that I don't detect any soft areas in the floor. While it did spend time in the woods, the former owner did maintain it. The front window was broken by vandals just last year and he blanketed it with a tarp to keep the water out. I have been using duct tape to seal out leaks and while it did work for a couple of weeks the top portions are starting to detatch from the aluminum so it is time to try something else - packing tape seems reasonable - just need to ride out all this moisture to try and attach it (it's been a wet winter in Connecticut). I think I'll also put the tarp back on it - I didn't realize there was an archives here - thanks! I'll pull Corning windows up and see what I can gleen from it. I appreciate all your comments. This is such an education! Diane

pinkflamingoes 01-13-2005 09:15 PM

Hi Diane!

Welcome to the world of '67 airstreams. Congratulations on your find, a lot of people wish they could get one at that price, even if the condition would be worse. The other posters are pretty much right from what I've learned so far (I'm new to this too). The floor and frame are big deals, so before you spend lots of money on other things, I suggest you look into how the frame and floor of the trailer look.

I have a thread that I posted because our front window also broken, but I think it's less of a problem than side windows because the front one is a flat piece of glass. It's the fact that Lexan windows curve slightly to fit the trailer body that makes them a problem; if you put in something that doesn't fit there's a small amount of leakage.

Anyway. Good luck, how about pictures!!!!!

silver 67 01-13-2005 09:39 PM

Welcome Moogie - We too have a '67 - a Sovereign. It's our understanding that the 67-68-69 models are the only ones that had the frameless curved glass. You are fortunate that you have a broken front window. The curved ones are so rare that we have been quoted $400 for one. We have some that are still glass and some that are plexiglass, however one of the plexiglass ones was cut a little too big and does not seal properly. We too are looking at lexan replacements. Protect the window hardware... they don't make that anymore either.

You got a heck of a deal. Our best to you.

Why am I up this late??????:confused:

moogie32 01-13-2005 10:02 PM

I can't believe everything I am learning here! Ingrid, I saw your webpage a couple of hours ago and tried to email you but my server didn't want to work for me at the time - great to talk to you now! Your A/S looks great! I am beginning to really appreciate how lucky I was to just be given this trailer (and how also lucky I am to have a flat window broken instead of the curved ones!). The archives proved to be a goldmine of info - There was one thread that mentioned a glass place right here in CT - Killingly glass - that made a tempered piece of flat glass for a member - I might try that out, if not, Lexan it is! Is there any way to tell whether you have rot or rust problems other than removing the belly pan? As I mentioned before - it seems solid from the floor inside. I'll take some digital photos this weekend - this baby still has the original gaucho fabric on it!

silver 67 01-13-2005 10:33 PM

Looking forward to seeing your pics of original gaucho fabric. I'd just be happy if ours still had the gaucho.

Say, is your bathroom the lovely turquoise and lime green like our 67?

You're gonna have fun.... when the weather warms up.


67 Sovereign

InsideOut 01-13-2005 10:35 PM


... that the 67-68-69 models are the only ones that had the frameless curved glass.
Actually, the curved Corning Glass was used only in '66-'68 trailers. '69 was the transition year that was the beginning of the round cornered windows in a full frame that have stayed pretty much the same ever since, at least with the Classics.

Congratulations on your find 'moogie32'!

Shari :)

Forrest 01-13-2005 11:54 PM

Hang in there. You might want to wait awhile to replace your windows because there may be tempered glass replacements available soon. These will be Corning glass duplicates. Details are still being worked out with the factory, but I think it will happen by this spring.

eljay 01-14-2005 04:57 AM

You asked how to check for floor rot. Change into your old work clothes.:p Get a really long screwdriver and a flashlight. Experiment first in an area that you can actually see is good. Poke around with the screwdriver where the shell meets the floor. You should hear solid wood, like knocking and it should feel solid. If you hear crackling, Rice Krispy noises or it feels soft, you've got a problem. Proceed around the trailer by opening every compartment at floor level one by one. You can also open the gauchos and lift the plywood to check under them. Then go to the service area at the back of the trailer and check around the toilet base. Also want to check the battery area.

For checking for current moisture in rotted areas once you begin sealing leaks, I got a moisture indicator from the gardening section at Walmart. It is supposed to be used to tell you when to water plants. I used it to check to see the area was dry before I applied the Rotfix.

Now let me warn you...once you look and you find something, the project tends to grow ;). I was lucky in finding floor rot in just a couple of places. You can find my photos about the floor here:
and some about the floor fix in post #30 here:

Have you figured out how to search the archives? So glad you're here!

till 01-14-2005 06:30 AM

Ahhh another '67 victum, er I mean owner. :D

Welcome to the CCC "Curved Corning Club". I sarted with a $150 wreck about a year ago and am slowly puting it back to road condition. You may wind up doing the "Full Monty" if you poke around the floor enough, but you may be lucky. Hope for the best for you, keep the questions coming.

PS check out my photo gallery if you are brave enough. ;)

pinkflamingoes 01-14-2005 03:34 PM


Originally Posted by moogie32
Ingrid, I saw your webpage a couple of hours ago Your A/S looks great! !

*thump* that's the sound of me falling off my chair laughing. Thanks though!

I don't know that there's any other way to look other than taking off the belly pan, you could just open it up in various places and look in with a flashlight. That's what I would do.

Taking off the belly pan for us was a no-brainer because it had to go, plus a big chunk of it is somewhere in the Utah Salt Flats. I do suggest finding out how the frame looks and that stuff. Don't be discouraged by that. It's what everyone should really do at some point, or all the other money you invest can be lost. Think of a beautiful house on a brick foundation, in California (we know a couple who just bought one for almost 1/2 million; if there's an earthquake, they lose it all). Plus, if it's stinky inside, whatever carpet, insulation, foam or upholstery you have may either have to be replaced or washed. It could also be the floor, I don't know but we got us a stink going in ours that no bleach on the walls will remove, so the insulation between the belly pan and frame is going bye bye. It's asbestos; wear a HEPA mask and eye covering at the least.

I'm fixing my frame right now, little by little; if I can do it, you can too. Don't think about the whole thing; just do "what's next". And by the way I've never gotten flamed for dumb questions here. The only responses I've gotten are helpful, encouraging, and willing to answer me as many times as I need to until I get it. Remember you got this thing practically for free! I can see aluminum reflecting in your eyes right now!

Join us at Air-Anon!!

pinkflamingoes 01-14-2005 03:37 PM


Originally Posted by Forrest
Hang in there. You might want to wait awhile to replace your windows because there may be tempered glass replacements available soon. These will be Corning glass duplicates. Details are still being worked out with the factory, but I think it will happen by this spring.

I would be very grateful if someone would specifically let me know if and when this happens. Forrest, where did you find this out? I'd like to keep track. I can't really replace the floor until the front window is replaced, or water can damage the floor.


moogie32 01-14-2005 08:23 PM

You guys are great! What encouraging words you have - it's sooooo nice to know I'm not in this by myself - I think half the battle here is having the guts to just go ahead and get into it! Since the weather up here is still pretty bad (I think we got something like an inch of rain today) I'll spend tomorrow putting the repaired tire back on it (it went flat in its journey out of the woods) and do some serious poking around on the floor - top side only for now - to see what I'm up against. I think the next thing I'll do after putting tarps over it to secure it against the weather will be to pull the pan off - it makes sense to discover the ultimate condition of it before the dollars start to fly....just how bad does the situation have to be before you decide it's a parts only venture? I will take photos tomorrow and will post them for all to see - It was very interesting to see Eljay's interior shots - how do you ever figure out how to put everything back in place? I'd have to take some serious notes along the way - great job cleaning up the rot! It would be great to be able to replace the glass with real Corning pieces - I will definately stay tuned on this - it may well be Spring before I start getting into window replacement. Pink Flamingos - I give you so much credit! You towed your trailer half way across the country - right? How much work does it need? How bad is the frame? Is your front window missing as well? I have to say that this forum has given me the encouragement to get this project rolling. I'm in a bit of a difficult situation because my husband had absolutely no interest in this project at all and I am totally on my own here. I've always wanted an Airstream and couldn't pass up the opportunity to get this one! I'm hoping he'll come around one of these days but in the meantime it's a mother/11 year old son project. Thank you all so much for your encouragement and help!!! I can't tell you what it means!

eljay 01-14-2005 08:48 PM

just how bad does the situation have to be before you decide it's a parts only venture?

Did you check out Till's pictures of Shell Shock? It's ultimately a decision of resources-what do you want to have in the end and what are you prepared to do/pay? Call me ambitious but, with the help of this forum, an intact shell and frame is a do-able project ;). Every project will not be able to do a restoration but the potential for refurbishment seems limitless to me.

And how do I know how to put everything back? Where does everything go? Lots and lots of photos. I only post a select few. We film as we destruct. The pieces are also in some semblance of of Airstream order in our basment.

Good luck in your "poking around" I hope you have a gem.

silver 67 01-14-2005 09:06 PM

I agree with eljay. You now own a classic. Something people will stare at when you go down the road. That's what we did. Now we own one of those beautiful silver bullets. Just think of everything your son will learn doing this project. Your husband will come around. Just wait til your neighbors and friends say to him "Gee, I didn't know you own an Airstream. That's neat(great, cool, or whatever)". Just keep asking questions. We do all the time and we learn something everyweek.

Feel the love.....

moogie32 01-14-2005 09:12 PM

Just got a look at all of Till's photos. Wow. What a project! How far along are you on it and what are you going to do on the back end of it? I admire your bravado and suddenly feel like my problems are small (well, at least my dents are!) compared to yours.... Did a tree fall on it? I agree with you, eljay - it is a matter of resources and expectations. I would be happy with something that looked nice on the outside and was livable on the inside - it doesn't have to be perfect and if it just provides a roof over our heads while camping in the beginning (and if the windows don't "explode" out along the way) that would be fine with me. Getting the refrigerator and stove working would be a bonus as would the bathroom fixtures - but right now I just don't want it to deteriorate anymore than it has. Another issue I'll have to deal with before it's roadworthy is new locks all the way around. The previous owner never had keys for any locks and eventually just removed the door handle. I have it, it's just not in place. The only thing keeping the door closed is the dead bolt and it doesn't work that well. I also can't secure any of the doors on the trailer so they are duct taped shut to keep them from falling off. The concept of keeping your sights on one task at a time is a good one - if you look at the total picute it's very overwhelming!

moogie32 01-14-2005 09:40 PM

Oh, forgot to reply to Beth on the color scheme - let's see - if my memory serves me correctly, the gauchos are a green and blue striped plaid. The bath is a yellowish color with a striped yellow pattern in some areas - On the back of the pocket door? Over the sink? It's hard to remember - I know there's stripes back there somewhere...It has a yellow/gold Magic chef stove which looks correct but I don't think is original and the wood grained original Dolmetic refrigerator. All these things may or may not work. Haven't tried them out yet. 2 dents one in the curbside upper front, one in the street side lower rear. There are also a couple of tears in the area right before the curbside wheel well which occurred when they were pulling it out and snagged a rock. Could have been worse, I guess, but I wish they had been more careful. I'm psyched to go out tomorrow and get some photos to see what you all think about it!

pinkflamingoes 01-14-2005 10:37 PM

I hear it's not good to tarp an airstream, even if it's old...maybe just cover windows.

You wouldn't want to just "cover a vintage one with a tarp" either...the movement in the wind, however slight, will scratch the aluminum, especailly if it's polished!

Whatever protective covering you use should be held away from the surface of the trailer and be secured carefully.

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