Skip to comments.Vanity: Anyone with experience owning an Airstream Trailer
Posted on 12/24/2011 6:13:11 PM PST by Jet Jaguar
Just looking for advice. I am headed back to Alaska. I bought a 1964 Tradewind.
I gotta fix it up and use it. I am looking for people who may have been through this before.
There are lots of clubs online that will help you out. Just get that piece of crap out of my yard.
I think I have a tank that fits one. It came from someone who had an Airstream before a divorce.
I hope you got money to burn. There are people who’s entire livelihood is restoring airstreams. I almost bought an old airstream motorhome(yes they actually made a drivable version for a short period) until I found out what it costs to refurbish one.
I have seen that.
Let me know the model. I might be interested.
Posted from someone who has never lived in Alaska.
The Summers make up for it. Believe me.
Mine is a trailer. I need a space I can drag with me. Most easy to do work on. It looks like.
...So what’s the best trailer for cold weather camping / living...?
Is this a trial visit or permanent?
I don’t know. I have survived -50 in North Pole before. This thing looks like it could survive as well with proper care.
Permanent. I am to be stationed there again. I am traveling during the Summer months up there. So weather should not be a big concern.
For winter, too? LOL! Okay.
Slap a layer of polyisocyanurate insulation all over the outside of it (top, sides and bottom, none on the inside of the trailer—toxic fumes if burning), and seal it all really well. Get some insulated window shades. Get some kind of storm windows on it—some that are easily removable (for switching wind directions). Get two of the most powerful Platinum Cat catalytic heaters (5200 BTU each, IIRC), and install those properly (vents). If you’re going to be off-grid, study PV solar systems thoroughly, and install one of those properly—at least 400 watts of charging (PV modules), but more is better (600 watts or more), with great charge controller, inverter, all of the switches required by code, and at least 6 golf cart batteries in an array two wide (series) and three long (parallel). Make sure that your water and waste won’t freeze.
Generally, the gas-fired appliances in travel trailers are dangerous in winter and often start fires.
Get an on-demand propane water heater with a good vent installed, and do thorough study on how to keep that from freezing (possible but very involved). The heat exchangers in those will freeze very easily if not installed with much technical consideration. Make sure that it has its own vertical air intake just under it (through the floor), because the forced exhaust heater might draw air through the water heater vent and freeze it up.
It will look like a space shuttle, when you’re done, but it will work if done well. Better yet, park the trailer in a heated building. That will work for sure. ;-)
What an adventure - All the best! Keep us posted.
It’s a camper.
Not gonna be living it year round.
I will winterize it when the freeeze comes.
Just using it to travel back up to the north.
It would almost be easier to go with all electric appliances and even electric heat...all powered by a massive generator, I think. He’s gonna need heat tape on all the pipes and tank heaters for fuel, water, and waste, and even heaters on his batteries. Might as well go totally electric.
Lots of rebuild project, some very well documented in text and photos. They even have a big section dedicated to winterizing and winter living.
So once its there, it stays there? Are you going to take the wheels off?
Chill man. Pun Intended.
What kind of fixing up are you talking about?
No, I have a cabin. It will be home while I get back up there.
Really, not a lot. I was interested in feed back for doing the interior furnishing of it.
It has no beds currently.
Just wanted to see what others have done.
Oh. I’m a professional cabinetmaker and I live in a trailer house.
Like that helps.
I guess my only suggestion would be to delineate hours of use. If it is summer and you plan on being out more than in, take up the space with decent sleeping arrangements. Otherwise, a sleeping bag on the floor and 36 more cases of beanee-weenies.
Check out the rv.net forum. Sign up and ask your question over there in the trailer forum. You should get some feedback. It’s a high volume forum.
You’re not planning on towing it up this winter are you?
Suggest you get a Friction Sway Control Bar installed on your hitch. It will help dampen out wind gusts and tractor/trailer or other large vehicles passing you at speed and sucking you over. Good luck.
This link will get you at least part of those shows:
Do a search for the Wally Byam ( society? club? ) — that is the collector’s / fanatics group for the Airstream. They had a meet one year in the town I worked in (diff town every time) and there were THOUSANDS of people who are just crazy about the things. And acres and acres of every variety of Airstream ever made...
Keep the shiny side up and MERRY CHRISTMAS,
No, Summertime trip.
Leaving South Carolina,
Ping to 38
Very sharp....and you made it safely thru all the “construction season” stuff along the way.
What kinds of critters did you encounter?
You are leaving now? Can I come? ;)
Did you get the inside how you wanted it? It’s sure looks great from the outside. Do you plan on ever coming back?
Couldn’t you just move one state north, I hear it’s nice and have considered moving there but it’s only a thought now. And may not turn into anything.
How long will it take you? Are you driving solo? When you stop for gas, etc, will you be able to keep in touch with us here?
Questions, questions. I certainly don’t have that adventurous spirit like you have - although if I was leaving Alaska, I probably would. ;) It’s by far one of the most beautiful states and a nice place to visit but I cannot imagine living there much less driving there like you are.
Please keep in touch w/updates - and once there stop in to see the Palin’s and say Jim from FR sent you. They might take you fishing and hunting. And a home cooked salmon dinner. Hmmm. He may want to join you if he didn’t have us to babysit for.
Godspeed, Jet Jaguar! And remember, the lower 48 will keep the lights on for you!
Not an Airstream, more rectangular but great Postwar fifties styling, aircraft grade riveted aluminum exterior bodywork, wraparound panoramic window in the living area, clear birch paneling everywhere, porthole windows in the doors. Looks almost entirely complete and original.
On the downside, that furnace looks scary for some reason, the green carpet has got to go, water damage underneath one bedroom window, some minor dents and dings on the exterior, no air conditioning.
A roof-mounted unit or two would solve both the scary furnace and the lack of a/c, you'd have to have a cabinetmaker put something period-appropriate in it's place. He can replace the damaged paneling beneath that bedroom window while he's at it. Flooring, I'd honestly go with authentic Linoleum, low maintenance, appropriate to the era.
All in all it doesn't look like an especially expensive proposition unless you were actually planning on towing it like a travel trailer. I was thinking more along the lines of those permanent RV campsites you see around lakes and beaches.
$6,900 or so and it's yours, lol.
No, I left last Summer. I did get most of the inside redone to my liking. I have some more plans to work on the inside. I got all the electrical and propane working. The plumbing is a different story. I will probably pull it all out when I have time and then remake the interior with more space.
I stripped and polished the outside, and it shined up very nice.
I will come back to the lower 48 when my tour is done here.
It took 13 days to get to Fairbanks.
I had very limited internet connectivity once getting on the Alaska-Canada highway.
I have since taken the camper down the Seward, AK for a salmon fishing charter.
It is a very easily towable camper and I have enjoyed it.
I will say hi to Mrs. Palin the next time I make it down to Wasilla.
No, I left last Summer
?? I asked because of your post
Leaving South Carolina,
38 posted on Saturday, August 03, 2013 2:13:20 AM by Jet Jaguar
In Seward, AK.
In Whitehorse, Canada.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.