Post by tariacuri on Sept 15, 2016 20:40:04 GMT -8
In a bought of insanity I purchased a 1958 Airflyte. I've been looking for a while and everything here in CO is crazy expensive - basically many wrecks at incredible prices. The trailer is located in MT and is being stored at a family members place - it can stay there as long as needed and is secure. I am considering my options in terms of getting the trailer to CO - essentially by towing, paying for a transporter, or perhaps telekinesis.
My brother looked over the trailer with my guidance - it is sound but of course I will have to pull up the outer skins and for sure replace some framing, etc. No visible signs of leakage inside the trailer or the four inside corners but of course that means the rot is just hiding somewhere extra evil.
I have a suitable vehicle and have towed long distances before. The trailer has been towed and used recently, everything in terms of the hitch, chains, etc. works.
The owner did not know the trailer had brakes so either they are not working, have been disconnected, he never tried them, or . . it does not have them. I have a controller and hopefully my Brother can figure the brake situation out and repack the bearings before towing - if I go that route.
Included with the trailer (for free I might add) are the two ancient radial car tires that the camper currently resides on. They are even 15's which is of course the correct size. I was hoping someone out there could spell out for me exactly where and what to buy in terms of the appropriate tires for the trailer - and if they need to be narrow? I would probably get radials? One possibility is to purchase two new rims, have the tires mounted here, and then just bring them with me? Can I use a doughnut for a spare? Where can I buy one?
Or . . . does anyone have any experience with a transporter?
I've been trying telekinesis but so far the trailer is still in MT?
I assume I'm not the only one who has done something this hare-brained?
Thanks in advance Chris, terrified new Shasta owner.
Last Edit: Sept 15, 2016 20:42:33 GMT -8 by tariacuri
We've all been there. Your Shasta seems to be in pretty good shape. Good that your brother will pack the bearings.
The tire situation could be a problem. I'm guessing that the Airflyte is similar to my 57 Deluxe. The tires we tried first were too high and didn't clear the top of the wheel well by an 1". So, we switched them for a better fit. Sorry, all trailers are different, so no exact size. If the tires appear to have good tread and could make some miles, it might be worth a try?
The donuts work if you have the correct bolt pattern, but they aren't always easy to find. Also, 50 miles max until you get good tires under her. Junkyards sell donuts, I wouldn't pay over $20 each.
I'm hoping other Airflyte owners will chime in on tire size.
If it has a roof vent make sure it is secure (they like to open and rip off in the wind)
As for the donut tires I know from my time as a punk kid using them full time on my slammed VWs they are good for around 5000 miles, they are a very soft rubber compound and go bald by then. Ran them for years and never had a single problem with them you can even drive them flat for long distances.
Post by azshastanut on Sept 16, 2016 20:44:18 GMT -8
The wheels that your trailer came with originally were supplied by Ford Motor Co. or Kelsey Hayes and are 15 X 5, 5 lug. The wheels are steel stamped with the size and manufacturer. They are a wheel that Ford started using in 1953 on sedans. The pick-up wheels are not the same and are not useable on a Shasta. The tires for original rims are ST205-75x15. The wheels have 3 nubs to hold a 10 1/4 inch hub cap.
In order to make picking up a Shasta and tow a long distance, I purchased some modern 15x5 rims with the standard Ford 5 lug bolt pattern. I found them loaclly for $15 each on Craigslist and had new tires mounted on them. It makes things so much easier and safer. Just pull the wheels, re-pack wheel bearings, replace seals, check your brakes. I suggest that you pull the brake assemblies and tow without them to get it home. I didn't do that on a 59 and a brake shoe retaining spring broke and allowed the adjuster assembly to come loose and jam the brake full on at 55mph. By the time I got stopped the near new tire was ruined with a hole worn thru it. Fortunately I had a spare with me and I always carry a floor jack so I pulled the brakes off and installed the spare and was back on the road about an hour later. That was a real good lesson. I don't leave the brakes on a trailer that has been sitting for several years. When I get the trailer home and do the restoration, I rebuild the suspension and brakes. I haven't had any problems towing Shasta Airflytes without the brakes connected, but I tow with a heavy half ton long wheel base 4wd.
The best place to get grease seals is ebay. Let me know if you would like the manufacturer and part number. You won't need them until you put the brake shoes back on.
Hope you get your trailer home soon. Welcome to the forum.
Just a little hint for changing them off the trailer... jacking the trailer up by the frame rather than under the axle will give a lot more clearance for removing and replacing the tires in the space confines of the wheel wells. This hangs the axle from the spring and stretches out the space for removal.
I recall a few different stories regarding transporters. One that ended well, the camper was transported on a flatbed trailer and never touched the road the entire trip. Another was towed behind a rig and was rear-ended in traffic, the camper totaled. Another I remember was delivered safely, some three weeks behind schedule with no explanations why. As with all things, there is a large "caveat emptor" that goes with hiring transporters. That being said there are several stories of folks who had good results using U-Ship.
Telekinesis may be more difficult but may actually be much safer.
Thanks everyone for the comments. I just found out the axle on the trailer has been replaced within the last five years and has some sort of bearing buddy installed - I'm waiting on pictures. Trailer brakes were not installed at that time so they are not present. I'm assuming it's the same bolt pattern and original wheels? They did not replace the 'U' bolts which I don't understand. I'll post some pics when I get them. The trailer is tucked away on my families property safe and sound.
There is a newly discovered rotten section of ceiling where the fridge vent goes through the roof - other wise seemingly solid - at least enough to get home.
Post by tariacuri on Sept 22, 2016 14:40:26 GMT -8
Well, it just got here, had it shipped on a flatbed for a few hundred bucks. Worth the peace of mind.
Pretty much what I expected except for a couple of things. The rot does not look to bad - everything feels solid except around the bottom of the rear cargo doors. The floor is solid but covered with a laminate which will need to come up to fully evaluate
Top of the stove has a bullet hole in the front - crazy
I think this is the correct fridge? but there is no roof vent for it, just the louvered vent on the side? Works - on propane at least.
You can see the furnace to the left of the fridge that was installed in the closet - I think that's not factory? - I'm going to remove that and not reinstall the vent on the roof which was causing leaking - unless I need one for the fridge - I'm confused about that because there is a second louvered door that does not open?
Here is the exhaust coming through the ceiling
And can I get an award for the worst looking DIY roof vent?
NO, Ok then how about taillight?
I'm putting some questions in a second thread
Last Edit: Sept 22, 2016 15:01:08 GMT -8 by tariacuri
Post by tariacuri on Sept 22, 2016 15:18:00 GMT -8
And here are my questions - hopefully there are answers
1) Axle - it has a Dexter 3500 lb axle and it looks like hubs with bearing saver fittings on it from 2005. But, I can't figure out if it is the correct style and how to retrofit brakes onto it? It also looks like it has the wrong bracket (not sure what it is called) that is allowing the leaf spring to drop in the back so that it is not horizontal to the frame? Was this done to increase clearance?
Post by tariacuri on Sept 22, 2016 15:26:14 GMT -8
Questions # 2 center around the frame - the front member is bent as if they hit something - but the welds onto the other frame sections are not broken. Can I just bend this back into shape by heating and gently hammering. I can't see any place where the frame looks out of true - at least on the visible parts of the trailer at this point?
And a bumper has been added to the back - I don't think this is factory. It is bent up on one side but again it looks like it broke the weld on the curbside weld where it meets the frame rather then the frame itself. I'm assuming that the second member that runs across the trailer from side to side is the original?
So this photo is looking toward the back - the bolted side sections were added and the bluish section was also added meaning that the portion in front of that is the original frame? So if I want that off it should be removed there?
Well, an update 24 months later (sat idle during the winters since I did the work outside). Only thing left to tackle is the water, everything else is done and working including electrical (minor miracle - all worked on the first try). Not sure what to do about painting a color - may use it for the rest of the summer and decide in the Fall.