Thursday, December 16, 2010

We should get a camper...

Hello all, My name is Kevin and over the last few months my wife Kim and I had discussed maybe picking up a camper so we could enjoy some long weekends next summer with our 2 boys. Tent camping, while both of us have done it in the past, is a little too 'rustic' for our tastes, but we certainly don't need (or want) a Taj Mahal on wheels either. A small travel trailer that would be easy to tow and park, with a comfortable bed and a place to prepare food seemed like it would be the best fit for our family.

I'm a fan of all things 'retro' and have seen many cool old campers from the 50's - 70's online and had been keeping my eyes open for a decent deal for some time. Our budget does not allow for running out and buying something fabulous that has already been restored, what we needed to find was something under $1000 that would be 'campable' without major expense in repairs and renovations. We are fairly handy and I have no problem tackling do it yourself type projects so I was thrilled when a 1968 Shasta Airflyte popped up on Craiglist for $750 just a few towns over. (I know, this blog is called '1971 Shasta Airflyte refurb'..  read on)

We looked at the 68 Airflyte and it had some good qualities.. It was sitting on new tires (including the spare), it had 2 new propane tanks, the trailer frame is nice and solid, it had a working propane / electric fridge, and was water tight..mostly due to at least 5 tubes worth of silicone that had been 'liberally' applied to every single possible water entry point.

The downsides that were obvious were that the interior was partially painted white, the fridge cabinet area had been reconfigured in a very amature way, the door handle was broken, and the trailer wiring that hooks up to the tow vehicle doesn't work.

Still, for $750 deliverd to my driveway, we went ahead and purchased the camper.

Here are a few pictures of the camper as delivered, taken the day we got it:







Some quick measurements revealed it would fit in the garage! Bonus. We'd at least have a covered spot to work on the trailer. My plans were to take out the fridge side cabinets entirely, and rebuild them in a better way, seal off the potty hole and put a new floor down, repaint the interior and reupholster the cushions. Not too ambitous, and certainly 'do-able' by springtime.

So the camper was parked in the garage and a few days later... something came up...

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