New guy, Old T&C

Discussion in 'The Welcome Wagon' started by bredlo, May 1, 2012.

  1. bredlo

    bredlo Active Member

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    A few more shots from my folder of "trailer porn":

    - a rare, bumper-mounted "continental kit". This isn't ours, but we have the same one... polished and ready to attach. Because we have an exterior door to a little crawlspace under our bed, we'll install the assembly on a hinge that swings out to the side. Side note: we'll also match the trailer's rims and tires to the wagon's, so one spare tire will service either vehicle, letting us put a 30 gallon tank where the wagon's spare sat. A can of Flat Fix will have to suffice when the Airstream isn't with us. :2_thumbs_up_-_anima

    - someone built this removable flower box, and I love it. I'm designing something similar so we can tend a little herb garden wherever we set up camp. Plus, it'll be a little oasis of green when we're sitting at the dinette; even if we're in a Walmart parking lot. :)

    - these are the trailers we combined. The side and front windows from the '54 (top) were installed into the '57 (below). The 54 windows have simpler levers vs. cranks, which are pot metal and strip easily. We also wanted a full size queen in the back, and if you look closely you'll see that the '57's "torso" has a different rib layout, pushing the windows forward so the bedroom wall won't intersect the last window in the row. We also eliminated that extra lower window for the cleaner look of the '54, and more storage inside.

    - almost exactly how our wet bath will look.

    - and lastly, another 22-footer with 13 crown pieces on each end. This is how ours will look when finished.
     

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  2. ModelT1

    ModelT1 Still Lost in the 50's

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    I just love those early Airstreams. Especially when polished.

    tend a little herb garden

    So what kind of herbs are we gonna be growing in that garden?:naughty::rofl2:

    I'm gonna forward your RR info to a few Cleveland friends.
    Back in Illinois we had a neighbor with a RR about that scale on a maybe 1/2 acre lot. I think it ran on gas engines.
     
  3. bredlo

    bredlo Active Member

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    Haw haw... she's strictly into fresh thyme and chives. Anything more potent and we'd have to grow, smoke and toss the rest out all while passing through Colorado! :oops:

    Please do! Yeah, lots use gas and even car batteries if you really wanna be clean and quiet. There's certainly romance in the real coal (every last tiny gauge works and mimics the real thing) but there's a lot to be said for spending more time playing... and less on set up and take down.

    "See you coal guys next week, I'm outta here!" :tiphat:
     
  4. Krash Kadillak

    Krash Kadillak Well-Known Member

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    Cool video on the little steam train, Brad.....
    Last time I rode one of those was maybe 50+ years ago at Griffith Park in L.A. Yours seems to go quite a bit faster than that one...

    Those copters are revolutionizing the video industry.
     
  5. bredlo

    bredlo Active Member

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    Updates:
    I've been finishing up a large illustration project, so visiting the shop has taken a backseat. Hope to get out there Wednesday or so.

    1. Body work
    However, they haven't been idle up there; the lone areas of rust in the floor was concentrated in the driver / front passenger foot wells.... and has been replaced over the past few days! I'm looking forward to protecting the top and entire undercarriage soon with Rhino liner, or some version of high quality, worry-free sealant.

    I'm a bit concerned about how crusty that inner door frame area seems to be in the second photo... but the guys haven't raised any alarm bells, so I won't worry about it until they tell me to.

    2. Alas, poor Windsor
    Meanwhile, I've been hoping to find a new home for the ole '53. Gotta say, I feel like the guy who dumps a really nice girl when I see it's just not going anywhere.

    Now that we've removed her interior, dash, headliner... and left most everything else (including a running drivetrain) intact, I figured I might be able to get $2500 or so for it. eBay produced a couple interested people, and it was actually sold once for $1900: they backed out after a week of no contact, perhaps after going back and reading the ad.

    However, when I put it on the local Craigslist I fielded dozens of calls - several from guys with full blown restoration shops who are eager to add a wagon to their list of credits, it seems.

    My enthusiasm that I'd make a 'love connection' was tempered, knowing the photos hardly tell the whole story. Sure enough, by the time I clarified I'd be removing the rare windshield for our other car (I'd written it in the ad but they needed to hear it) all their excitement quickly deflated.

    3. Pain in the glass
    I estimate the total number of these wagons (Desoto, Chrysler Windsor + New Yorker) built in 1953 and '54 at between 6,600 and 7,200. They used specific glass: DW282, either clear or blue tinted.. and I've had a hell of a time trying to find any others. It was never reproduced to anyone's knowledge (somewhat unsurprisingly).

    It was suggested by one expert I spoke with that I might consider modifying the opening to accept the far more easy-to-find sedan windshields. The differences, apparently, may be in the overall height - or perhaps just the shape of the lower corners. That would probably also require finding stainless molding from a sedan as well - also not overly difficult.

    Needless to say, at this point I'd almost prefer to modify it so I don't have a heart attack every time a pebble bounces towards us at 65 mph. But until I'm absolutely sure I can, I've not delisted the '53 since its value will be largely determined depending whether or not we cannibalize it further. :hmmm:

    That's the latest ~ hope my fellow midwesterners are staying warm.
     

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    Last edited: Jan 27, 2014
  6. bredlo

    bredlo Active Member

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    The shop posted pics on Facebook this morning of the driver's floor area buttoned up.

    oh, and I was thinking I might keep an eye out for a pair of Bentley tray tables... like these from a 1956. I think it'd be neat, while on the road, to hop in the backseat with my laptop once we're set up in camp... and get some work done in peace and quiet, especially with the wife and dogs monopolizing the Airstream.

    Like the tight cabins in boats, our successful road trips have been about finding the maximum efficiency in everything we bring along. Utilizing the wagon as a little office in in that spirit as well.

    Obviously I'd have to downgrade that hoity toity veneer and instead match our marine plywood bed. :disagree: But those stainless hinged arms are too cool for school... a miniature version of the wagon's tailgate!
     

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  7. Stormin' Norman

    Stormin' Norman Well-Known Member

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  8. bredlo

    bredlo Active Member

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    Thanks for the tips! I've posted a want ad over at the H.A.M.B. in the meantime, perhaps someone has a pair sitting in a limo being parted out.

    Oh - Jaguar was the other car I'd seen some pretty examples in.
     

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  9. bredlo

    bredlo Active Member

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    Just found these on eBay while continuing to ponder these little tables. The wife and I are thinking we may keep the seats intact and reupholster these Jag seats at some point in the existing, alligator vinyl.

    These still have an era-correct low back, the advantage of armrests, and frankly look more comfortable than our bench seat. It's a slippery slope to stray further and further from originality... but either way, these trays aren't available separately in this auction. I think we'll pull the trigger and decide later. My sister lives in Long Beach where they're located, and can hold them for me until the next time we hit the west coast.
     

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  10. MikeT1961

    MikeT1961 Well-Known Member

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    I was going to suggest getting a pair of the Jag seats. Since the car is not original anyway, comfort reigns supreme, and the Jag seats will be a LOT more comfortable. Somehow, though, it seems a bit backwards to remove the Connelly leather and put vinyl in! Because I am tall, I've always been a fan of seats with a high back. More support for the shoulders, and that is important when towing. Makes for less tenseness in the shoulder muscles. Depending on the donor the veneer could be one of several different woods on those trays, too. Who knows, you may get lucky and be able to finish the load bed so that it almost matches the trays.
     
  11. bredlo

    bredlo Active Member

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    Right - these ones I found above are still pretty benchey too, for separates. I like that it wouldn't look like I'd tossed Chevy Blazer buckets in there.

    Ha! True, but we sure do love our alligator stuff. Seems to wear like iron, and Melissa has swatches of the same stuff available today.

    That's a fun idea, and it had crossed my mind.

    Our bed is in great shape but it's not hard at all to imagine how incredible it would be to add a real veneer of book-matched walnut, quarter sawn tiger oak, etc., and making it look like the Chrysler had a hot date with a Rolls. :dancing:
     
  12. bredlo

    bredlo Active Member

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    Hey guys - hope everyone's happy and healthy. Winter's death grip on Chicago is slooowly loosening, thankfully, and we're starting to plan out the cabinetry, cork flooring and other items to install in the Airstream as the mercury ticks upwards.

    Little update:
    Visited the shop a couple weeks ago. We're still waiting on the Fatman sub to make its way up from North Carolina; in the meantime, all the little areas of rot, the remaining original, crusty rustproofing and closing up unnecessary holes in the firewall are completed.

    The guys are finishing sanding the guide coat to level out all the skin, though I've repeatedly reminded them to keep the hours down on this: we don't want something so nice we'll be afraid to drive it, though I realize a dark paint job (if we go that route) will show imperfections more readily than lighter hues.

    As I mentioned a few weeks ago regarding our "rare windshield" quandary, we're proceeding with the plan to modify the wagon's opening so we can use easier-to-find sedan windshields. Measurements have been taken and I'm talking with old glass suppliers to get my hands on a windshield that we can work from.

    That's the latest - hopefully I'll have a lot more progress to report on next time.
     

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  13. bill s preston esq

    bill s preston esq New Member

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    any updates?

    i sold mine last month to clear space in my garage since it sat for over 4 years. i'll have another one some day.
     
  14. bredlo

    bredlo Active Member

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    Hey guys,

    Sorry for the long radio silence. We blew past our budget by the time we were in primer. The car has been sitting inside since then... while the old black '53 sits outside, with its interior removed for safe keeping.

    I have a new job so there'll be more income to throw at this thing shortly, and meanwhile I've spent the summer concentrating on fixing up the Airstream. It's looking good (not good enough to share photos of at the moment) so hopefully by the end of the year I'll have a happy update, with lots of photos.

    Thanks for checkin' in Bill S. Preston - sorry you sold yours. Hopefully it won't sit in the next guy's garage for another 4 years. :)
     
  15. ModelT1

    ModelT1 Still Lost in the 50's

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    Brad it's about time you checked in. We almost sent a posse up your way. Glad you got a new and improved job. Now you can toss more money into the wagon pit and get it on the road.
    Plus ugly pictures of an Airstream are better than none.:camera:
    Glad you are doing well.
     

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