Sunday, December 8, 2013

1968 Caravel 7 of...

Work progresses, though as in my last post, there is very little to see dramatically. The shell is now completely put back together again. 

The  replacing of the belt line is always the last step in making the shell complete. The next priority is to make the shell completely water tight. My main focus has been the windows. Anyone owning a 1966- 1968 Airstream knows the windows are a very vulnerable part. They are notorious for leaking.  I began the process by removing all of the gaskets and all the sealant used in the past.

Do you see that glow in the center of the photo? If you can see light from the inside you for sure will see water from the outside. This is serious issue with this era of trailer. All 4 corners on all 5 windows have this issue. The engineers were really relying on sealant to make the shell water tight. 

I have gone over this a few times now but originally the bumper hatch went under the sub floor. Once the sealant fails here the water goes under the floor and quickly rots it out. I have yet to see a trailer with a bumper hatch that does not suffer this issue. I redesign the lid so there is a gap between the shell and the hatch so the water cannot go under the floor.

These new hatches always look great in my opinion.

Here you see the window shown earlier with new gaskets installed. This gasket is crucial since it is all that keeps the weather out. The upper corners take the most abuse and must be supple. I strongly advise you replace the window gasket every few years in any 1966- 1968 Airstream. Putting a bunch of goo around the window is not going to fix it. If that goo makes contact with the gasket, it will actually keep the gasket from sealing on the glass and make the leak even worse.

You might also notice all the black lines on the shell interior. I have applied a spray on, flexible, sealer to every single rivet tail and every seam. The objective is zero leaks going forward. Special attention was given to the corners shown earlier. All the exterior seams have also been sealed using Acryl- R. This flexible seam sealant is very familiar to most reading my blog. Acryl-R wicks into the seam and remains flexible for a long time. The shell is almost ready to be tested under the hose...


  1. No matter how many times I look at your work, I still love to see it being done the RIGHT way. Things like cleaning all the old sealant off before applying new sealant, gap between the bumper trunk lid and the shell, elevator bolts, all of it! Keep it on 11

  2. Wow beautiful work. It seems you are a true craftsman. Thanks for sharing this post with us.

  3. Favorite gasket for the 1966-1968 windows?