Restoration of Scott and Kathy's 1955 Flying Cloud Whale Tail - Our California Vintage Airstream.
Airstream Restoration by Colin Hyde Trailer Restoration

Monday, March 30, 2015

End Cap Panels - Dent Be Gone!

When we first looked at buying an Airstream, we were offered a small discount on a new trailer with a basketball sized dent in the rear drivers-side end cap panels.  The dealer had backed into a tree branch when parking at the RV show at their fairgrounds.   Not knowing the work involved with end cap replacements we wisely passed on that opportunity.  Whew!  Good decision for us.

Two years later, we decided that our ideal vintage Airstream trailer was a 22 foot 1955 Flying Cloud.  One year after that we found our vintage Flying Cloud...perfect with a twin bed layout...and a basketball sized dent in the rear drivers-side end cap panel.  Guess that we were meant to buy a dented Airstream.

Now that has all changed.  Colin tried to remove the dent but the aluminum was stretched and could not be reformed.  As we were doing a full restoration with the interior skins removed, it was decided to replace the panels...One of those one time events in our lives, so "do it right" things.

With beads rolled at the bottom of our two new end panels, the panels were fitted with clecos before being buck riveted into place.

The final window frame was also buck riveted to the shell and end cap seam.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Colin's New Hobby - Beading

Colin added new equipment to his shop and just in time!  1955 Airstreams, actually "all" of the Airstreams until approximately 1959 were made with 13 panel end caps.  These thirteen end cap panels each has a rolled edge at the bottom of the aluminum which is made with a set of bead rollers.

Our 2008 CCD Airstream does not have this feature.  Don't run your fingers over these sharper seams!

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Hehr Ventalation - Vintage Delight!

The rear Fantastic Fan is polished and installed.  In 1955, each Airstream was built to a customer's specifications.  And we are very fortunate to have on our 1955 Flying Cloud Airstream the "Very Rare Hehr Lid Skylight Panel" and Colin reconfigured it to work with the Fantastic Fan vent housing using a new gasket.  Someday I'd like to find the names of the original owners, and send them a huge thank you for their choices!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Beautiful Back End!

The new rear hatch door with a new 1950's reproduction Airstream name plate from Vintage Trailer Supply is installed.  I'm so glad for the custom hinges that Colin built for us.  More holes were cut into the shell, these are for the housings to hold the tail lights.
Colin has been busy working on our Airstream!!!
Now I will get busy updating this blog - there are lots of photos to study and share. 
Stay tuned!
May 2014 posts are being dated to time when work was done.