PlayMor

Play-Mor

History

Unfortunately, the company suffered a fire and all information, serial numbers and pictures have been destroyed. At this time, they make modern “Toy Haulers”.

Established in 1964, Play-Mor Trailers was started by Charles R. “Dick” Willibrand. It was his family’s love of the camping lifestyle that brought about Play-Mor’s beginning. Play-Mor continues to be a family owned company.

Manufacturer Information

Westphalia, MO

Years built

Produced 1964 to Present

Models

Models started with the 130, 140, 150 and 160 series. Play-Mor also built a 180 and 200 model. The 1960’s models were designed based initially on the popular ‘tin can ham’ style for the 130’s & 140’s. The larger models were more of the ‘tin bread loaf’ design with bustle backs (trunk back) and the 150’s also have a front bulge which is the only Play-Mor model known to have this design feature.

Play-Mor also made fiberglass trailers.

Standard Features

These trailers were standard tongue hitch trailers and there aren’t many left.

Photos/Videos

 

Clubs/Links

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1669282253307018/

Nu Wa

Nu-Wa

Nu-Wa Campers, Inc. / Nu-Wa Industries, Inc. Located in Chanute, Kansas

NuWa

(pronounced “New Way” as in “New Way of Camping” coined circa 1965)

1966-2013

These guys did it all from trailers, fifth wheels, motorhomes and big park models. They built quality into every model.

Models

  • Hitchhiker
  • Champagne
  • Discover America
  • Snowbird
  • Premier

Pictures

Links

Their website is still active even though it was last updated when they closed in 2013 – http://www.nuwa.com/

Norris

NORRIS

History

The NORRIS story begins in the 1950’s in Eastern Tennessee, where our entire operation still remains today. NORRIS was founded by the Gose family, whose members fished and trapped along the shores of Norris Lake, from which NORRIS was named. The Gose brothers both had successful businesses in woodworking. One brother worked in cabinets and the other in furniture. One of them would later venture into the travel trailer industry in Claiborne County, TN. Many travel trailer retail dealers began selling mobile homes. This sparked an idea for Mr. Gose to start a manufacturing facility.

In 1965, 50 years ago, the brother’s formed NORRIS Industries, Inc., secured property in Bean Station, TN, and built a 56,000 square foot manufacturing facility that’s going stronger than ever today. In the spring of 1966, production began with 500 RV’s. In the fall of 1966 “superbly built” homes started rolling out the door. In 1973, NORRIS Industries expanded with the addition of what today is the primary facility used for production. The new plant and a brand new cabinet shop grew the size of the operation to 250,000 square feet under roof.

In 1984, Clayton Homes, INC. purchased NORRIS Industries. Jim Clayton, founder of Clayton Homes, had a long history with NORRIS, as Clayton was one of NORRIS’ top retailers year after year. Recognizing the quality product and brand equity NORRIS had to offer, the NORRIS brand fit nicely into Clayton’s growing company. Today, NORRIS stands as the pinnacle of home building in our industry and is recognized as the standard for luxury and quality. Thank you for making NORRIS your preferred housing choice!

Volunteer was made by Norris Homes in New Tazewell TN. It was the middle of three product lines, Norris being the top of the line, then Volunteer, then Smokey was the economy line. We have a 1968 Smokey we’re restoring. They were bought out by Midas Intenational and eventually stopped building in the mid 70’s.

Connected to the production of travel trailers since 1960, Norris grew from a $5,000 investment to a brand under Midas-International Corporation. Building travel trailers ranging from 16 feet to just under 34 feet in length, Norris earned a reputation for being affordable, well-assembled recreational products. The Norris name was also involved in manufacturing truck campers up until the mid-1960s. After the 1982 model year, the Norris name was no longer part of the travel trailer marketplace.

Manufacturer Information

Manufactured in Bull’s Gap, TN

Years Built

1950s-1980s

Models

Norris
Volunteer
Smokey
Grizzly
Panda
Teddy
Cub
Ambassador

Pictures

https://norrishomes.com/norris-history/

Nomad

Nomad

History

Manufacturer Information

Skyline’s Corporate Profile

Skyline Corporation is one of America’s leading producers of manufactured housing and recreational vehicles. These products are built in plants located from coast to coast and marketed nationally through independent retailers.

HISTORY

Founded in 1951 in Elkhart, Indiana, Skyline initially produced the affordable housing units popularly known as house trailers or mobile homes. These units evolved into today’s manufactured housing. In 1960, Skyline opened its first travel trailer plant. During its 55-plus years of operation, Skyline has built more than 880,000 homes and 465,000 recreational vehicles (RVs), most of them travel trailers. Its sales over the years total in excess of $15.4 billion.

ORGANIZATION

Corporate headquarters, shown on the front cover, is in Elkhart, Indiana. It houses marketing services, accounting, information technology, engineering, product development, financial, legal, and other functions. Products are built by 21 operating divisions in 11 states from coast to coast. Of the 21 divisions, 16 produce housing and five produce RVs.

FINANCIAL

Skyline has operated in the black every year since it was founded. Its balance sheet is among the soundest in American industry with a strong cash position and no corporate debt. Skyline is publicly owned and its shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

HOUSING PRODUCTS

Skyline produces a wide range of manufactured and modular homes with price ranges to fit most budgets. Skyline homes are sold under a number of identifying names. The single-section manufactured homes emphasize affordability and frequently are sited in specially-developed manufactured housing developments. The multi-sectional and modular homes are also very affordable and in appearance they are indistinguishable from site-built housing. Many of the multi-sectional and modular houses are sited on conventional residential lots.

COMMITMENT OF EXCELLENCE

Skyline’s Commitment of Excellence program asks customers to evaluate their total buying experience. The result is a Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI) that serves as a benchmark from which we can measure progress. While the index continues to improve, neither Skyline nor our dealers intend to relax until the Total Customer Satisfaction goal is achieved.

RV PRODUCTS

Skyline builds three types of towable RVs: conventional travel trailers, fifth wheel travel trailers, and park models. The principal brand names for these products are Nomad, Layton, Aljo, and Rampage. All Skyline RVs are UL Classified.

Photos

1962 Nomad

1967 Nomad Road King brochure

1969 Nomad

1966 Nomad
1965 Nomad 16′ Vintage Travel Trailer
1968 Nomad Vintage Travel Trailer
Vintage 1969 Nomad Travel Trailer
1963 Nomad Vintage Camper

Meredith Reynolds & Paul Klein,Saint Johns Michigan purchased 1960-something Nomad on January 3, 2010

Not sure of the model year, but this picture was taken during the summer of 1971 of our family’s 19′ Nomad:

Some owners

Mark & Kathy Moore / Howard, OH /purchased Nomad Sept.27, 2008

Silver Streak

Silver Streak Travel Trailer

History

1949-1997

Silver Streak Trailer Company – El Monte, California

From 1946 to 1948, the Curtis Wright Company (not to be confused with the Curtiss-Wright aircraft company) produced trailer coaches. In 1949, the company sold the design rights to Silver Streak partners Kenny Neptune, James “Pat” Patterson, and Frank Polito. In the 1957, Neptune and Polito bought out their partner Patterson. Patterson then founded the Streamline Trailer Mfg. Co.

This coach is a variation of an early Wally Byam design, (the father of the Airstream), which he came up with while working for Curtis Wright from 1937 through 1947. Just before leaving to re-form the Airstream Company which, he’s actually begun in 1931. Byam was a major influence in the design of the 1946-1948 Curtis Wright Clipper. However, in 1949 Curtis Wright sold the rights to the design to three partners by the name of Frank Polito, James Patterson and Kenny Neptune who formed the Silver Streak Trailer Company and, who then simply renamed the coach the Silver Streak Clipper. After reshaping the front and rear Plexiglas windows in 1950, front and rear glass windows that actually opened became an option in late 1953. (In 1957 Pat Patterson left Silver Streak, and along with dealer Harry Lovett, formed the Streamline Trailer Co.)

Ad for the first Silver Streak Clipper in 1949

Manufacturer Information

Silver Streak Trailer Company in El Monte California Originally located at 1166 Chico St. and later moved to 2100 block of Chico St.

A BRIEF SILVER STREAK HISTORY

Two men, Frank Polito and Kenny Neptune, each of whom had previously worked for McDonald Douglas Corp, founded the Silver Streak Trailer Co. in approximately 1948. The first trailer was delivered in 1949. The factory was in South El Monte, CA. In 1986 another company wanted to buy the land the factory was sitting on. Polito and Neptune sold the land. At the time that Pollito and Neptune sold the land the factory General Manager was Rolf Zushlag. The partners had hired Zushlag from Airstream in 1978. Zushlag made a deal with the two partners for patterns and all machinery. He stayed at the South El Monte site for 12 to 14 months and then found a place in Chino, CA. There were no l987 models manufactured due to the move. Zushlag continued building custom built Silver Streaks until 1997. Both founders are still alive and live in the Los Angeles area. Mr. Zushlag, after closing the factory, is still active in the Los Angeles area in other business activities.

The company came out with the Sterling series trailers in 1985. This trailer had black trim and the gold trimmed trailer was discontinued. Silver Streak never built over 6 trailers per week. There was a national Silver Streak organization from 1968 to 1997. It was officially disbanded at the St. George, UT National rally when only 28 trailers showed up. There is still a Houston area club and they are planning a Regional rally at Burnett, TX between San Antonio and Kerrville this year on May 6, 2000.

According to Mr. Ashby, who has refurbished and sold over 110 Silver Streaks, it is his opinion the Silver Streak is a far better trailer than the Airstream, based on overall construction and a substantially stronger frame. In addition, unlike the Airstream construction, the Silver Streak skin was built right on the trailer frames. All internal structures and appliances were then placed within the shell through the entry.

The vents on the side of the trailers were placed there as “weep” holes. They resulted in condensation inside the trailer in very cold climates. Mr. Ashby recommends caulking them closed. Mr. Ashby has numerous Silver Streak parts including Hadco axles and grease seals and aluminum segments for the front and rear of some models.

No shop manuals or parts manuals were ever developed by the Silver Streak Co. The only manuals that were developed were the Silver Streak Owners Manuals provided with new trailers.

S/S moved to Chino, Ca in 1987, as it was “purchased” by Rolf Zuschlag around that time. I was first hired as a welder, but the only production person that followed the move to Chino quit and that left me as the sole employee to manufacturer, what was supposed to be the last S/S to be made. I managed to finish the trailer, a 26′ unit that was pulled by a VW Thing. The unit was featured in an issue of RV World. (I think that’s the magazine) The unit was dragged all over Mexico by the Thing. We were true experts on saving weight and maximizing storage space. Incidentally, that unit was ordered by the same person that eventually ordered and received the very last unit built in 1995.

I became production supervisor almost as soon as I started working there, and eventually took over the service dept. as well. In the late fall of ’87 Rolf proposed that with a new design we might start real production again. I agreed to redesign and make all new jigs, patterns, production proceeders, My Goodness, I remade everything. Granted though, I made more $ in the redesigning and manufacturer of the first prototype than at any other time with the company. The new Sterling was as slick as could get, and had many features that Argosy and Airstream copied from me. I mean me in that most all these features were created by me and only me.

I don’t have any of the brochures left of the new Sterling Series, but I may be able to direct you a source, and quite possibly some of our old business cards, as well as pictures of some special units,(government, police,5th wheels, ambulances,a prototype pick-up topper, lot’s of oddities) We actually made a 44′ unit once.

I left the company in ’95 due to impossible to resolve issues between myself and the owner. I could also see that the company was soon to fail because outside influences were abound. We were out of enough money to keep the place alive, and no decent financial proposals were being offered. I didn’t enjoy leaving something that I had literally put together, but the time had come.

As it stands now, I am the last person alive that can build or repair any S/S ever made, along with the Streamlines,(we’d get them in for service alot, mostly because we had the only .032 double anodized alum. skin anywhere) Here’s an odd one… S/S had a small part in the first Jurassic Park movie. Starr Waggons (Lyle Waggoner) sent a unit to Hawaiii to be used in the very first part of the film. On the way out there, a hurricane sank the ship that was carrying the entrance door that went with the chopped-up unit. I got a call from Lyle telling me that he needed a next day replacement for the door. Since I was the only one that knew how to make it I charged him around $800 for the door. It’s in the movie, in the scene where the people go into the trailer and open a bottle of wine.

I’m sure that if your site was more pronounced, like in a travel trailer magazine, you would get many more followers. That would mean more fotos, stories and copies of the original brochures ,specs,pricing, and if your lucky an original copy of the ‘lifetime guarantee’ We did, for the most part, even though not written down, continue the guarantee for structurally related issues.

I would love to start building S’Ss again, but the economy prohibits such dreaming.

Feel free to ask me anything about Silver Streak as I most likely have the answers.

P.S.: If the old man in Texas didn’t die yet or if someone took over his repair business, there may be some old parts still out there. I’ll try to remember how to find him.

by Kyle Morrison chipawaue123@hotmail.com this e-m no longer valid use kylexdanny8904@outlook.com

Years built

1949- 1997

Models

  • Clipper 18, 20 and 22ft.
  • Jet 19 ft.
  • Sabre 17 ft.
  • Prince 18 ft. (1969)
  • Sabre 19 ft.
  • SS210 21 ft. (1980-?)
  • Continental Atlas 22 ft. (1968)
  • Sabre 23 ft.
  • Atlas 26 ft.
  • Atlas Twin Continental 27 ft (1970)
  • Rocket 27 ft. (1956)
  • Rocket 28 ft.
  • Continental Supreme 28 ft.
  • Luxury Liner 31 ft. (1957-58?)
  • Continental Supreme 34 ft.
  • Deluxe Atlas

Interiors

  • Very little wood was used on the interiors
  • Dinette at front of the coach
  • Dixie stove and Marvel refrigerator
  • Dometic fridge, Magic Chef stove, Duo Therm AC (1968)
  • Princess stove (turquoise) in my 68 Silver Streak Sabre. Matching turq. fridge.

Unique features/Options

  • Pipe frame so very light weight trailer, about 2800 lbs.
  • Electric refrigerator option
  • Standard venetian blinds and drapes
  • Painted interior

Prices

  1. 1953 SS Clipper, non-restored, interior gutted, sold on eBay in October 2006 for $2500.
  2. 1974 Silver Streak Continental Rocket 28 foot (model 2800) with “moisture problems” and unknow interior condition, sold on eBay in Oct 2006 for $1250.
  3. Birchwood Beauties Vintage Trailer Coach Co. offered a nice 1954 SS Clipper in Fall 2006 for $5000 http://www.birchwoodbeauties.com/pages/54clipper-corning.html
  4. 1971 Silver Streak Sabre in great running condition and maintained by its former owners, with the exception of the floor furnace and small dent on back side, sold on craigslist in November 2010 for $3,200. Told it will be on the road for about a year then settled for a refurbished project.

Pictures/Videos

 

1978

1953 Silver Streak Clipper 22′

Sold on eBay October 2006 for $2500

1964 SS Sabre 17 Ft

    

spotted in a driveway

1980 SS210 21 Ft

RG Bohot, rgbohot@yahoo.com

Some owners

Brian & Melissa Morrow 1964 Silverstreak Sabre 19′ and a 1957 Silverstreak Jet 19′ email maxandchip@aol.com

Drew and alicia keller drewkeller 2010@hotmail.com 1974 continental 24′

David and Heather May 1968 Silver Streak Atlas Continental 26′ Dave@impulseaudiovideo.com

  1. Personal page about a Silver Streak Continental, including photos from a 1970’s brochure: http://www.lyalls.net/devoid/sstreak.html
  2. Tom Patterson’s Silver Streak web site: http://tompatterson.com/Silverstreak/Silverstreak.php
  3. Birchwood Beauties Vintage Trailer Coach Co.: http://www.birchwoodbeauties.com/pages/54clipper-corning.html
  4. Silver Streak Trailer Club, 226 Grand Ave. #207, Long Beach, CA 90803, 310-433-0539
  5. The best way that has worked for me, and some of the S/S’s were actually lift tested by cranes, (gov jobs),was as follows… We used two 10′ beams that would support the total weight of the trailer, in this case something along the lines of a box or round with 3“-4” diam. and at least 1/4“ walls. Since the lion’s share of the weight is usually over the axle assy. figure this for the center of the placement of the two beams that will be under the unit. Roughly on that 19’r it would be best to start with the beam at the rear of the unit to be placed about three feet from the rear of the wheel and the other about 10′ to the forward. Then you will be able to cinch these to the cable/chains with enough clearance on the sides of the unit, so not to damage the skin and balance the load. Be very sure to use some 4×4’s or the like, set on the roof to make certain that on lift the cables/chains don’t draw in and hit your unit.

I would have liked to send you a drawing, but to open it you would have to have a CAD prog to see it. So, I hope that this helps you visualize what I’m trying to say.

Please let me know how things work out. danny

To pull the dents out depending on where they are, you can try a wet suction cup. (like a window hanger uses, good ones can be had through PPG Enterprises, they are online.) Or just borrow one. If the dent is on a crease or one of the head section segments you will most likely have to do it from the inside. It may seem like a lot of work, but it goes by pretty quick.

We used to clear coat the ones built in the 90’s, and we clear coated many older units as well. Nylacote is the best, and you can get it from a decent sized airplane repair shop. It is the coating that is used on jet planes. Be careful though, a chief ingredient is cyanide. You don’t want to breath too much of it. We’d usually paint an entire trailer in about 20 minutes, then run like hell. The stuff drys within seconds. If you are trying to paint a small area just get a small spray kit from an auto body paint store. I don’t right off remember the name of the painter kit, but it starts with a P. For prepping the surface for the clear coat we used many gallons of lacquer thinner, and masked off whatever wasn’t to get shot. CARB would have had a fit to see us painting those units and openly letting thinner into the air. Too late now… Best of luck, keep in touch…..

As far as using invertors I’ve had great fortune in using several different brands. The programmable ones are the most efficient, but they require that you know what basic loads that you intend to put on it. So, for general purposes I tend to lead folks to use any generic brand to reduce confusion. Always use very high gauge wire to the invertor, from the batt set. The smallest wire that I would run for up to a 12′ run would be 1/0. Another thing to consider is the heat output from the invertor. Ventilation is extremely important! A cooling fan is not recommended as it would be a power draw, unless it’s wired into a solar collection source and builds batt back-up.

One of the ‘tricks’ that we used for new construction and repairs was what was called MIG-warping. Say a new chassis came in looking like a wad of spaghetti, all twisted and stuff. (yes, for some time we do farm-out chassis building, built our own flawless ones once again from ’92 on), well at first the guy that I put in charge of that sort of thing would wack at it with a forklift and torch. Well, this got too old, too loud, and too expensive. I showed him something that I’d learned from working at Miller Trailer (Bradenton, FLA). It’s pretty easy, and even better, simple. If you have a piece of metal that is bent/radius-ed in the wrong direction, just lay a MIG bead. (pretty hot) on the side of the radius that you want to decrease. The basic result is to shrink the area by forcefully applying extra metal to the area. I know, sounds reversed, but this is how it’s done all the way down from sheet metal on a car to 24 I-beams on a low-boy trailer. The resulting ecxess metal can be ground down slow and cold if needed. For something common, like a channel of let's say 5x1/2 to erase a radius over a 2' section at about 36 round with two light passes of .035 steel wire with an overlay of around 1/8 twice very close to the rib, along the surface of the 1 1/2 section. You will see almost right away that the channel will pull towards the weld and the temperament of the metal will stay intact. For other ways to use this method, you will need to experiment. Or maybe just remove the part, lay it on a concrete floor with an attached concrete wall and bang on it for a few hours with a soon to be doomed forklift.

Ok. I know that soon I will be getting asked about how to fix the cracks around the windows and the main door. The old tried and not so true method was allowed by the factory as a means of living up to the ‘lifetime guarantee’. The method was to ‘stop-drill’ the crack, fill the end with an Olympic rivet, then seal the crack and hope that we never heard from you again. (‘least ’til you needed something that put cash in our trousers) The two correct ways are as follows… This is somewhat based on the yr of unit you have. I’ll start by saying that if you have a unit that was built from about mid ’88-mid’89 you might be in for a real hum-dinger. I’ll address that later, so that you have a much better understanding regarding the repair technics by seeing how the other fixes are achieved. Please keep in mind that almost all S/S’s built before ’86 used off-fall for the production of the horizontal pieces that make up the skeleton of the unit. Off-fall is the little pieces of ‘junk’ that results from cutting out window/door/access doors, everything. It got bent-up into c-channels of about 1 7/8”x 3/4“ and would many times be clad with plastic and/or wax. This made it impossible to weld. So, since this was the case, all units made before ’97 were only riveted together. If you look through this file you will see that later that was changed. Anyways I will get on to correct repair procedure. First, remove the skin, drill it out per the instructions using the instructions just below this set. Be so very careful because with the Grace of God, you may be able to use the same piece again, and not loose the color of the trailer, or make a great deal of extra work for yourself. Now you’re down to ribs. There are two ways to deal with this at the moment. I will tell you the cheapest and easiest way, and it will be up to the individual to decide if they want to go the extra step and make this last forever. Since, in most cases, this repair will be involving riveted skeleton parts, the best option is to find a piece of aluminum that extends at least 12” more than the affected area and rivet it like crazy,and reapply the original skin. or, you Since you know of roughly what skin to look for, you’ve got that covered. Now, if you want to go the extra steps, do as follows, and they will be noted in order of importance. Since now you have reattached the skin, you will notice the gap between the skin, jack the trailer up as close as possible to the center of the crack, along the chassis’ front to rear main beam to where the crack ‘disappears’. Now you have the choice of being crude, and installing a 1“x2”x3/16“ ‘fish-box tube”, using bolts, this won’t last for long, both methods involve stripping away the underbelly to expose the chassis proper and welding a piece of 1“x2”x3/16“ piece in place, both cases spanning at least 18” from the center on each end of the center of the skin’s crack. Please keep in mind that when you weld the new piece in place, one must pay attention to the resulting contraction. (for a strip of around 48“ long on a typical 5”x1 1/2“ c-channel you would place welds of around 1/8”width X 3“ long passes over the distance, resulting in around a 1/8” lift, or about 1/2“ rise over that span. Notice that the welds are intended to be applyed ‘kitty-corner’ from each other and followed through quickly.The welds, kitty-corner provides a more stress relieved chassis and also keeps the imposing tensions to a minimal, by local disspersment. You can chose whether or not to cover this with the stanard .025 alum..

Unforunately for those that purchased the ‘new” units, from mid ’88-’95, you get a whole new ball of problems. On the upside, the unit is far superior than Mr Neptune ever dreampt, the downside is that it will cost much more to repair. Now, before anyone gets in a huff about the ‘extra’ cost, let me explain. Rolf and I made the decision to modify the units with an unwritten law that made us pay for all repairs that were inclusive to our design changes. We always held our part of this, even at the cost of the company. We were not ever required to, but it was our policy to make ammends in any and every way that we could, even to the point of honoring long past obligations for life-time warrantys that could no longer apply, as this was a new business, under new command. For this, consider the ‘super-taping’ of the main outer skin. Though a much more solid structure, this was done to ensure an almost rivetless skin along the main section of the outer skin. We used the tape to bond the skin to what we had an almost perfected rib structure. (horizontantals were then welded to allow flex and much solidity). This made a much more solid unit while allowing that replacement skins would still be availible. When the company closed, back in ’96 noone would support the metal used for the skin. (read on for info about how to get the skin)

For this,subject I should tell you’all about how to take off the super-taped skin. I had my first experience with a new unit that had just been rolled over on the freeway. It just happened to be the most cost-losing unit that we ever produced. (the first and only handi-cap one) At first I tried to rip the main exterior panels off with a forklift, tearing them downward, that was a giant mistake, the panels stuck to the ribs as if they were welded together. I had to let loose of the tension from the forks and slowly cut the tape loose. The disaster was that my initial pulling had rippled the main ribs, to the point of having to replace them. From this, I also had to pay back the insurance company a great deal of money because I could not “repair to new” for the fact that I had to use Olympic rivets in some areas.In the end, I had to shave and replace all material in regards to the roll-over, and took a mighty loss.

Skin replacement can go either real easy or go south in a heart-beat. I’ll confront the issue from a couple different points. Lets assume first that you already have the pie shaped segments from the factory. This would mean that they are .032 brushed and triple anodized aluminum with the beaded edges. First you would drill out the rivets (using a # 30 jobber sized drill bit), going in this order… Start with the rivet line on the bottom segment’s lower edge going from the center area of the head, then back towards the body of the trailer. Next, start from the center area of the head and pick the next one up and repeat. Do this until you can pull out the desired amount of segments to be replaced. Keep in mind that when you are drilling out the rivets you need to be careful not to elongate the holes too much, as you may need their exact centers later. A good trick is to pre-mark center lines of the rivets prior to drill-out on the old segment with pencil lines. Now, the hard part…

The sealant tape can also be had through just about any service center that deals with Thor Indust. Trailers or more directly from an Air Stream repair facility. You will also need the final edge sealant, Air Stream or Argosy folks for that. We would only let a few certain people apply the final sealant, it’s tricky. OK, first apply a strand of the tape to the side of the segment that will be covered. It helps to brush a light coat of oil on the sealant to allow it to move more freely. This is assuming that the holes were pre-drilled from S/S. If the segments were sent to you without holes, I would have sent them myself, for reasons you will see later. If they need holes, simply transfer them from the matching segment and pre-drill about every other one or every third one. This will give you a way to ‘play’ with how you finally drill the other holes to get a tight fit between the segment’s over-laps. Now keep in mind the we had cleeko rivets and their special pliers back then. Cleekos can be bought or rented usually from an aircraft repair facility or maybe an Aistream or Argosy repair shop. Cleekos are a temporary rivet installed by putting the cleeko into it plier, squeezing the handles and inserting the head into the #30 hole and releasing, where it will expand and make a quick temporary hold of the pieces. Keep in mind the all pieces must be re-installed using #30 size cleekos or rivets to make sure that all goes well before finally drilling out all the holes to accept the #20 size Olympic rivets. This will usually give enough room in the end to make a few adjustments. Most of our workers would waste many pieces and lots more man-hours before getting this down-packed. So, you must take your time. So, for the most part you reverse the order of removal. When it’s all ‘tacked-in’ with either #30 (1/8”) rivets and/or cleekos you can then go onto the fun stuff. The Olympic rivets are expensive so take care in using them. It doesn’t really matter what order you put them in, unless you find that since you left some spaces between your primary bonding (with the #30’s or cleekos), and now you see with careful placement of the final rivets, such as spacing them a little different or angling them this way or that you can manipulate the segments/skin to fit better. So, when you are ready to use the Olympics use a #30 to drill out the little rivets or pliers to remove the cleekos and one or two at a time enlarge the holes to #20 and pop in your final rivets, clean the excess sealant with a plastic putty knife wipe off with laquer thinner and carefully seal/caulk with the silver sealer. Now for a couple notes that I already see need some answers.

1) if you don’t want the expense of buying the Olympic rivet shaver, the resulting shank can be cut down as close as possible, the filed to look more like an original buck rivet 2) the plastic putty knives that we used were made from 1” strips of old Formica at around 1/8” thick (in the factory they were called Tiger knives) 3) if not satisfied with part of you edge sealing job, immediately wipe the bad area with lacquer thinner and try again

So that this set of instructions can be used for more than one repair area on the trailers, The rest will be a bit more inclusive of other types of aluminum bodied units.(including aircraft)

Ok, say somebody needs to replace an aluminum piece and can’t seem to match the type of material. Well, in the case of a S/S’s main body, above the lowest beltline it can be done. It will be extremely difficult but it can be done for a S/S and other alum skinned animals. For the anodized areas on S/S’s and such units that used that certain metal, you first need to procure a piece of ‘normal’ alum, that is at least the size of the one to be replaced,( around .032 in thickness). Then for creating the brushed look, use a piece of 00 steel wool firmly held to a 2×4 and with another 2×4 as a guide make many passes back and forth to effectively brush the desired look onto the piece. The guide is there to make sure that the resulting scratches are parallel to one another. The final part is the most difficult. You the need to find an anodizing shop willing to anodize the piece. Experience tells me that one “pass’ will suffice, but it may require more. OK, there you go, a piece ready to copy and replace. Anodizing can be done in a backyard or garage, but I’m sortta doubting that anyone really wants to try that. I have, it works, but it’s slightly messy. As far as the strengthening beads that were used on the older units and all the head segments for every year of the S/S’s; there’s two ways to go. For the head segments it is an edge set-back of 3/16” at a 45 degree angle. Because of the curve in the piece this might seem impossible unless you use a hammer and dolly. It ain’t so hard though. As you can see, both sides are broken. At most air conditioner and furnace installer shops they will have a Pittsburg press. With a simple modification to the edge guide they can set the depth of the brake,(they will need to remove the other form rollers), and for the fact that they have to make it be able to make the radial arc, the edge guide needs to be around 3” past the center of the rollers on either side. A total of 6” edge guide. The trick is when the piece is being pulled through, that constant attention is being paid to how much of the pieces edge contacts the 6” edge guide, and the while feeding it into the rollers the main part of the piece stay flat on the table. Any competent shop will do this, providing you pay for the edge guide. Show them this letter and say, to the effect, “…think ya can?”. Also, we’ve found that as the piece is being fed, keep the broken edge up away from the table, this allows for the curvature on inside curves to be fed. On the straight body sections a decent fabrication shop can manage the bead at the total length of the brake they have at hand. This brings me to the corner sections that have a seemingly 3-d bead effect on their radius. Because the stock the was roll-formed at the factory was initially made from 48” wide roll-off then sent through a 4-5 at a time beader we would simply place a pattern over the entire 48” piece, then cut to match. To get the centers of the beads measure from one edge and tell the brakeman about those centers. When measuring those centers measure from the body side, not the head as the curve may throw you off in the translation. ( try teaching this for a decade to all Mexican workers, and me at only conversational in Spanish) The majority of the horizontal pieces from start of production, ‘til ‘87 were just off-fall broken into 1 ½” channels with ¾” sides. Since these older units were not structurally welded this was of no concern. The rivets held this ‘floating’ assembly in place. In 87’, when I came in all structure was 2”x

¾ fully welded and ‘pressed in place’ construction. The bows ,door frames and frames were made from two separate hydraulic formers. Let’s just say for now, they existed and they worked. Explaining these machines would take up too much time. The ‘pressed in place’ concept and design was the brain-child of Rolf Zuschlag, the last owner of the company. The final decision to weld the skeleton as a complete unit was my decision. Regarding on how to make the radius pcs that make up the heads and the bows, oh yeah can’t forget the doors and doorways, on request I can provide that info.

Since I’ve been posted on the TCT I’ve received many questions, and am happy to answer them, you may want to see if the owner of the sight wants this letter posted as well. Don’t want to forget this!! When drilling out rivets go only as deep as needed. Otherwise you can drill into vital electrical lines. Mark the skin to remember where electrical is. Also, #30= 1/8”, #20=3/16”. If an Olympic rivet pops to quick, (leaves a hole in it’s center, drill it out with a #20 and pull it again to feel good pressure, let go, cut the shank then, and finish dressing it. Underbelly alum is just shiny .025, rip out old part, cut to size, rivet new back in. This will require you to loosen the lower belt molding. Notice how the slits were cut for the radius. One more note to all. After 1988 all units were put together with 3-M super tape. If you try to remove the skin without knowing how it was constructed, the repair cost will far exceed most estimates. The skin removal is grueling, and more than 10x the removal cost of riveted skin. The bows and horizontals will be ruined without proper procedure. I will tell anyone for free, how to do this. (better than the heart-ache that could otherwise happen). One day maybe I’ll tell folks about the hidden $100 bills….. a lot of the newer (87-95 units had them). Danny

OK, the pipe sounds as if it was an old gas line. To be sure, look at it’s diameter, a gas line would be around 3/4“ on the outside. Make sure it’s plugged off if not being used. If the dents warrant repair and aren’t too bad, usually a ‘paintless body shop’ can do that, otherwise the panel would need replacement. I have a document on repair/replacement of panels if you need that info. (bye and bye, at some point I will have written an entire repair manual) For chairs, try Ikea? Closet door, hmmm, try Lowes-Home-Depot…. For stoves/ovens,AC’s,furnaces,awnings,stabilizer jacks, try dometic.com. They handle all the original equiptment that will be closest to your needs.

Unfortunately, I’m the last of the Mohicans, (pardon the pun), for info regarding these units. Airstream can do many repairs but lack the mind-set that was used in the S/S’s. If you have any questions on anything concerning these units I’ll be happy to help.

danny/kyle The best place that I’ve seen for locating parts and new stuff is at dometic.com. Whenever we ordered new items,we went through Dometic. They always had replacement parts as well.

Happy shopping! kyle

Well, you’re fortunate to have all of the individual letters intact. That will allow you to copy them pretty easy. If it were me, since from what I know all the letters and stickers were thrown out in ’96,) I’d make permanent casting molds out of aluminum and market them the letters, for profit, of course. There seems to quite a market out there for some of these parts. You’ll be able to duplicate the material fairly well using resin that is used for making those clear paper weights and adding the color. Depending on how creative you want to be, you can actually add glow in the dark stuff as well. With all the newer machining tools we have now, it will be pretty easy to remove the wanted letters to get molds made from them. Originally they were self adhesive, but in repair we always used a very good quality contact cement that was impervious to UV light. I have been told that Mr. Patterson has some letters. As for as the vacuum system, I’m going to assume that your are referring to the water supply system. If that’s the case, it was originally a pressurized tank, under the roadside bed, that had a little air pump to pump-up the tank. This type of system had some flaws. chiefly, it caused the tanks to develop leaks, also it was unsanitary, and the pumps were prone to failure. To fix the leaks that I’m pretty sure that you will have, simply scrub the area well with a stainless steel brush ’til the metal is well buffed, then apply JB Weld, the original kind. to the area,extending outward by a good inch around the hole. This works equally well for both s/s and alum. tanks. To fix the initial problem of no water flow, disconnect the air pump and block it’s fitting at the tank, then install a decent water pump from the tank’s out let to the system to the system’s cold water supply. When you get a look at this you’ll see how simple it really is. And to think, we charged $75 an

hour for this! But in my defense we we worth every penny of the labor charges when it came to the skins, modifications,chassis rebuilding, retro-fitting etc… By the way, I’m in MI now, closer than you thought, hugh? The last S/S factory was in Chino, CA., and your unit was built in S. El Monte, CA.. I have serviced many of the S/S’s of every year, and I would think it’d be funny if you found a service order in your unit that it showed up in Chino.

Keep in touch, and I’m glad to answer your questions. danny or kyle (I used both names for many years)

P.S.: Your unit looks great! Oh, and for plastics, I was always using S&W Plastics in Chino, CA. Also, to remove the letters without damage, use a piece of guitar wire, or similar, and slip it behind the letter and using a downward sawing motion saw it off while keeping things wet with lacquer thinner or nail polish remover.

Yeah, we did do hi-pot tests on all new units. In all those yrs only one failed (at the 600 V test) It was delayed for delivery for a couple days. The problem was found to be that a drill caused a knick in the sheath of a 110 lead. It was really not a problem, but we were that very careful.I personally did all the Hi-Pot tests and with the one incident have never seen any unit fail. Of course we (I) did the 900V test as well.

On the subject of electrical diagrams…. AS far as I before 1987 there were no drawing and with the exception of a customer requesting a schematic for the units built in the late 80’s-90’s we threw them out when the trailer left. A good rule of thumb for tracing wiring is to know that it all begins at the breaker/fuse panel, and will be run on the shortest possible route to the first point on the circuit and on the the next point, and so on. All S/S’s and Airstreams were wired so that the wire use was as efficient as possible. That means the wires, as they came off of the panel box, would be run as if you were laying on the floor of the unit, looking up and imagined the shortest possible path, even if it were to run up over into the ceiling and back down to another point. This was done, not out of stinginess or to save weight, but more to lessen the over-all load on each circuit. No wires were run under the floor line. To find out the actual scheme of a circuit, the fastest way is to turn off all breakers or unscrew all fuses for the load circuits, keeping the main breaker/fuse on. Next, turn on one circuit, and go thru the unit with something that can be plugged in and mark each plug that has power in it.Turn off all power going into the trailer. Now go ahead and pull all the covers off of the outlets that belong to that circuit, remove the receptical, and unscrew all the black wires that feed into the recepticals. To make this go much faster it would, at this point be a good idea to use a continuity buzzer/light unit.Or, use an electrical meter set on ohms with long wires taped to the leads to see when you find continuity between two outlets the buzzer/light will alert you, or the meter will read (0).This will tell you in what order the circuit is run inside the trailer. To find out which is the first receptical on that particular circuit, with all power off going into the breaker/fuse panel box, and the black wires inside still being exposed, touch on end of your lead wire from the tester to the black wire that comes from the breaker/fuse for the circuit that you are currently checking on, then go inside of the trailer and the black wire for the circuit you checking out will set off your tester/meter. This will be #1 on that circuit, and the rest is now obvious. This method can be employed for the 12 volt circuits as well, with a few exceptions. In some cases you will have to use your imagination.

On repairing/changing flooring…. The S/S’s and Steamlines were furnished from the inside. This means that if you want to replace the flooring or get access from the top, to say replace a tank or change/repair the flooring plywood, it can be done from the inside. All the walls and furniture are screwed in from inside the unit. If you want to replace the entire flooring, it gets a little harder if it needs to be replaced under the aluminum structure under the skeleton. To do it very proper, one would need to remove the divider walls and anything that’s fastened to the walls and floor, tear out the carpet/linoleum then the wall material that is fastened to the skeleton. Then remove the screws that hold the bottom of the skeleton to the chassis that has the flooring between. Then you be able to use a skill saw, set at the depth of the floor, so the blade doesn’t hit the steel chassis, to make cuts that allow for removal of the bad flooring. You will need to find a way to jack the skeleton up to get the new flooring in, usually the outside materials will do this for you. Remember, you can’t replace the entire width of the floor in one piece, so you need to figure a place to make the dividing cut that won’t cause a weak area for walking on later. And, of course, screw it back down with good quality self tapping screws at least as wide and long as the originals, bigger is better.

               kyle

From time to time, I am asked what a unit is worth. Generally the going price is between $600-$1000 per foot. This is dependent, of course on the condition and amenities of the unit. (the pricing naturally discludes the ’88-’95 yrs, which are far more) Some purists may suggest the adding such things as modern A/C’s, sat receivers, microwaves and such reduce the value, but I say, HOW?. Happy dealin’……

Serro Scotty

Serro Scotty

Manufacturer Information

Serro Scotty trailers were built from 1957 until April, 1997, when the plant in Irwin, Pennsylvania burned down. The plant later reopened in Mt. Pleasant, Pennsylvania, but never again to make travel trailers. Today, known as Mobile Concepts by Scotty, they manufacture fire safety “houses”. Due to their easy availability, low cost, and the increasing population of retiring baby boomers, there has been a resurgence of popularity for these small trailers that can be towed by even a 4-cylinder, and stored in the family garage.

Years built

Serro Scotty trailers were built from 1957 until April, 1997

History

  • 1956: John Serro, recently retired as a car salesman, builds a 16 1/2′ trailer in his garage that no one wanted to buy.
  • 1957: Serro introduces a 10′ teardrop trailer. 225 of them were built through 1960. This trailer was called the Sportsman, Jr.
  • 1958: The 13′ Sportsman, Sr. was added. Later to be called a “Gaucho”. This trailer really took off.
  • 1959: A 12′ rear-door model is introduced. This model lasts only 2 years.
  • 1960: Sportsman, Jr. (teardrop), Sportsman, Sr. (13′) and a 15′ model are offered. Last year for the teardrop.
  • 1961: three 13′ models were offered: Mattress, Gaucho, and Front Kitchen, as well as two new 15′ Front Kitchen models, Sportsman 15 and Scotty with Potty 15. Wings were an option.
  • 1962: This is the last year for the 15′ Front Kitchen!
  • 1963: The Bristol, OK plant opens and the trailers are now offered in aqua and white as well as polished aluminum. Scottyland, a 230 acre campground, at that time, solely for Scotty campers, opens.
  • 1964: Only aqua and white trailers are now available. The “split-level” 15′ HiLander is introduced.
  • 1965: The HiLander is restyled to move the “Sun Deck” forward of the door for easier entry.
  • 1966: The “Front Kitchen” becomes known as the Tonga. Also, the Royal Scott, a 17 1/2′ one-piece fiberglass trailer was built. It proved too expensive and too heavy and was never manufactured.
  • 1968: A new plant opens in Ashburn, GA. This is the last year for the Tonga model.
  • 1969: Only the 13′ and 15′ Gauchos are offered, along with the 15′ HiLander The trailers move to the 60″ wide front and back windows.
  • 1970: Most of the Scottys offered have jalousy windows in the door.
  • 1971: Most still have jalousy windowed doors, and the interiors move from the blue spatter to a fake woodgrain.
  • 1973: A tan panel is added to the lower front of the trailers, in addition to the aqua and white. An 18′ model of the HiLander is offered, commonly called a “Trunkback”
  • 1975: A new model called the JS715 replaces the 15′ Gaucho model. This model had optional top bunks above the back gaucho and the dinette (JS=John Serro, 7=sleeps 7 & 15=length). Also offered were the 13′ Gaucho, the 15′ HiLander, and the 18′ HiLander.
  • 1978: Trailers now have a tan and bittersweet stripe down the middle of the sides are now used with the aqua.
  • 1979: First year for no aqua to be used on the Scotty. Also the first year for the jagged stripe down the side, using tan, bittersweet, orange, and black. Lots of new models introduced this year – the 12.5′, 13.5′, 16′, 16.5′, 17′, 19.5′, 24.5′, 26.5′, 28′ and 32′.
  • 1980s: Trailers are more boxy shaped and Serro offers a full line of trailers, all the way from 13′ through 50′ park models.
  • 1982: A new 13 1/2 model is introduced. The door is located behind the axle and the kitchen is in the rear. It has a bathroom!
  • 1985: By this year, the name Regalia is introduced.
  • 1990: The 1990 Scottys are top of the line.
  • 1995: Serro adds motorhomes to the mix.
  • 1997: Serro plant burns to the ground and Serro stops manufacturing travel trailers. Scotty is still in business in Pennsylvania but is now known as Mobile Concepts by Scotty. They now make Police and Fire Safety trailers.

Scotty Specs

**1958** Model Length Width Height Weight Sleeps Cost Sportsman, Jr 10′ 4′ 5’3″ 750 # 2 $495.00 Sportsman, Sr. 13′ 6’3″ 6’4″ 975 # 4 $795.00

**1959** Model Length Width Height Weight Sleeps Cost Sportsman, Jr 10′ 4’2″ 5’3″ 750 # 2 $495.00 Sportsman, Sr. 13′ 6’4″ 6’4″ 975 # 4 $795.00 Sportsman-12 12′ 6’4″ 6′ 925# 2 or 3 $695.00

**1960** Model Length Width Height Weight Sleeps Cost Sportsman 10′ – 6′ 665 # 2 $495.00 Sportsman 13′ – 6’4″ 975 # 4-5 $795.00 Sportsman 15′ – 6’4″ 1300 # 4-5 $995.00

**1961** Model Length Width Height Weight Sleeps Cost Sportsman 13′ 6’4″ 6’4″ 975 # 4-5 $795.00 SM-Front Kitchen 13′ 6’4″ 6’4″ 975 # 4-5 $825.00 Sportsman 15′ 6’4″ 6’10” 1300 # 4-5 $995.00 SM-Front Kitchen 15′ 6’4″ 6’10” 1300 # 4-5 $995.00

**1962** Model Length Width Height Weight Sleeps Cost Mattress 13′ 6’4″ 6’4″ 975 # 4-5 $775.00 Gaucho 13′ 6’4″ 6’4″ 975 # 4-5 $795.00 Front Kitchen 13′ 6’4″ 6’4″ 975 # 4-5 $840.00 15′ 15′ 6’4″ 6’10” 1300 # 6 $995.00

**1969** Model Length Width Height Weight Sleeps Cost Gaucho 13′ 6’4″ 6’11” 975 # 4-5 $795.00 Gaucho 15′ 6’4″ 7’2″ 1300 # 5-6 $995.00 HiLander 15′ 6’4″ 7’6″ 1525 # 6-7 $1165.00

**1979** Model Length Int.Width Int.Height Weight Sleeps Cost Scotty Lite 13′ 74″ 72″ 992 # 3-4 – HiLander 15′ 82″ 76″ 1990 # 6-7 – 16 Custom 16′ 90″ 76″ 2140 # 6-8 – 16 Deluxe 16′ 90″ 76″ 2400 # 8 – 18 Deluxe 18′ 90″ 76″ 3010 # 6 –

Pictures

 

Some owners

Mark and Kathy Bailey 1966 Scotty 13 ft gaucho model

Tammy Spangle 1967 15 ft Scotty Hilander model tammyspan@yahoo.com

Eric and Nicole Keiffer 1961 15ft Front Kitchen and 1972 HiLander scotty@keiffer.org

Clubs/Links

http://www.nationalserroscotty.org/ The website was created in 2004 and The National Serro Scotty Organization formed in 2005. With members in nearly every state and in Canada, Denmark and Germany, campouts held throughout the United States, and a National Rally held each summer – where it all began, in Pennsylvania – this group has become the primary source of information for anyone restoring and/or rebuilding their Serro Scotty or other small vintage trailers. It is also a way to connect to, and communicate with, fellow owners and campers.

http://www.serroscottycamperenthusiasts.com This yahoo group was created in 1997 by a man named Alan Colwell (RIP) so Scotty owners could connect.

Mallard

Mallard

Manufacturer Information

The Mallard trailer was manufactured in West Bend, Wisconsin. The Mallard Coach Corporation was founded in 1952 by Sylvester W. “Vesy” Hron and was located in West Bend, Wisconsin. Sylvester Hron was the majority shareholder and served as president from 1954 to 1969. Like many entrepreneurs Sylvester Hron founded and managed several businesses in the West Bend area and was very active in local civic activities. Mallard Coach Corp. initially manufactured travel trailers. During the 1960’s tent campers, truck campers, motor homes and snow mobiles were added to their product line. Mallard expanded into the tent camper market in 1964. Offered were two models, the Canvasback (model c140) and the Decoy. The Decoy was came as either the Deluxe (model c120) or the Standard (model c80). The Canvasback was a very unique and original camper. Unfolded it looked identical to a prairie schooner from the 1800’s. Very different, to be sure. It retailed for $745.00, or $5098.19 in 2009 dollars. The Decoy was of the typical design of the time, tent top with two side beds. The two models retailed for $679.00 and $589.00, or 4,646.54 and 4,030.65 respectively in 2009 dollars. In keeping with the competition the Canvasback hard top camping trailer was introduced in 1966. It featured an aluminum top with 77 inches of space between the floor and the roof. Strange enough the Canvasback c140 model was still in the lineup, but the more traditional designed Decoy was dropped. Sylvester Hron sold Mallard Coach Corp. to The Entwistle Company based out of Providence, R.I. in 1969. He served Mallard as the chairman until he retired from that post in 1971. After the sale of Mallard facts regarding the Mallard Coach Corp. are sparse. It appears that tent campers and snow mobiles were discontinued after 1970. The focus was back to manufacturing travel trailers. On December 16, 1986 the Mallard Coach Company, Inc. was incorporated in the state of Florida. At the time of this writing I do not have the facts concerning when the Entwistle Company divested itself of Mallard and why. In May 1992 Mallard Coach ceased its manufacturing operations and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. At some point after this Fleetwood purchased the Mallard brand name and used it for a line of their travel trailers. Fleetwood file for bankruptcy in 2009. Sylvester Hron died on June 10, 2004. updated 2-10-2014 Andrew Keller

Years built

1952-2009

Models

  • Duckling
  • White Wing
  • Drake
  • Drift Wing
  • Flight Leader
  • Flight Wing models
  • Migrator
  • Goldeneye
  • Pintail
  • Canvasback

Pictures

1963 VINTAGE MALLARD DUCKLING 12FT TRAVEL TRAILER SWEET OLD CAMPER
1965 Mallard White Wing 16ft
1959 Mallard “Canned Ham” Camper It’s almost done
1968 Mallard camper
1961 17 Foot Mallard Drake Camper Trailer
1963 Mallard White Wing 16′ Travel Trailer AD Reprint
1963 Mallard Drift Wing 19.5′ Travel Trailer AD Reprint
Mallard Vintage Camper Travel Trailer Flyers Ads 1963
1966 Vintage Ad Mallard Drake Travel Trailers
A vintage Mallard travel trailer ad from my 1962 Travel Trailer Park Guide.
Mallard Travel Trailer Brochure

 

Some owners

Roger and Stephanie Hager are owners of a 1962 Mallard Duckling Cody Main Orland, CA 1

964 Mallard Migrator John Ryan and Jennifer Egelhof, Plainfield, VT

1966 Mallard Drake 16T Jamie and Carrie Boettcher Marinette,WI

Clubs/Links

Vintage Mallard Campers Facebook group https://www.facebook.com/groups/vintagemallards/

Layton

Layton

Manufacturer Information

Skyline who builds Layton is the only UL certified travel trailer and have been building them since 1950! Skyline Corporation – Makers of Nomad, Layton and Aljo travel trailers and fifth wheels, Elkhart, IN. Founded in 1951 in Elkhart, Indiana, Skyline initially produced the affordable housing units popularly known as house trailers or mobile homes. These units evolved into today’s manufactured housing. In 1960, Skyline opened its first travel trailer plant. During its 54-plus years of operation, Skyline has built more than 870,000 homes and 460,000 recreational vehicles (RV’s), most of them travel trailers. Its sales over the years total in excess of $15 billion. Skyline builds three types of towable RV’s: conventional travel trailers, fifth wheel travel trailers, and park models. The principal brand names for these products are Nomad, Layton, Aljo, and Rampage. All Skyline RVs are UL Classified. Skyline is committed to producing the best products at the best prices. It has earned a reputation for uncompromising integrity in all of its relationships with communities, suppliers, retailers, and with the hundreds of Americans who live in Skyline-built homes and enjoy Skyline-built RVs. Skyline Corporation designs and produces manufactured housing and recreational vehicles (RVs). Approximately 80 percent of the company’s total sales are derived from manufactured homes, which are sold under several different trade names. Skyline makes two basic types of manufactured housing: single-section mobile homes and multi-section homes. Single-section homes, which range from 36 to 80 feet in length and 12 to 18 feet in width, are often located in designated mobile home parks. Because their size makes them easy to move from place to place, they are considered “mobile homes.” Skyline’s multi-section homes, however, are larger and more closely resemble site-built homes. Buyers typically place these homes on traditional lots, and rarely, if ever, move them. Almost 70 percent of the homes produced by Skyline are multi-sections. The company’s recreational vehicle segment manufactures three types of towable RVs–conventional travel trailers, fifth-wheel trailers, and park models–as well as a line of slide-in truck campers. They are sold under the “Nomad,” “Layton,” “Aljo,” and “WeekEnder” trademarks. Skyline operates 25 manufacturing plants in 12 states and distributes its products through a national network of manufactured housing and RV dealers. Skyline Coach, the predecessor to Skyline Corporation, was established in 1951 in Elkhart, Indiana. Its founder, Julius Decio, started the business to produce mobile homes, which were commonly called “house trailers” at the time. The business Decio chose was by no means an uncommon one for Elkhart and its surrounding communities. For 20 years, the city–located in northern central Indiana, just a few miles from the Michigan border–had been a major hub for the mobile home industry. The area’s mobile home business had begun in 1933, when a local merchant decided to try replicating a contraption he had seen at the Chicago World’s Fair that looked like a tent on wheels. Setting up shop in Elkhart, he began building “house trailers,” which resembled rudimentary recreational travel trailers. The trailers’ affordability and mobility made them a good option during the Great Depression, when many families traveled across country looking for jobs and a better life. The success of this first mobile home manufacturer led others to start similar businesses, and gradually the region became a major source of house trailers. During the Dust Bowl of 1937 and 1938, people began using house trailers not just to travel in, but as actual homes. In response, manufacturers modified their products to make them more closely correspond to traditional homes, increasing the size of the units and adding more amenities. By the end of World War II, mobile homes had evolved into something much different from their travel-trailer predecessors. Larger and more elaborate in design, they were no longer meant to be towed, camper-style, across the country by families on the move. Rather, they had become an alternative and more affordable type of house, typically stationed in one place. There were, however, a number of manufacturers still producing the early smaller trailers, primarily for use as recreational vehicles. After the war, these manufacturers essentially split off from the mobile home industry to form the RV industry. It was into this newly bifurcated industry that Julius Decio entered when he began building house trailers in a friend’s “welding garage.” His early efforts met with success, and the business was profitable from its first year in operation. In 1952, Decio’s 22-year-old son, Art, returned to Elkhart from Chicago, where he had just graduated college. Art quickly took an active role in his father’s business, working as a division manager in the plant and helping to build the fledgling company. In 1956, he became Skyline’s CEO. The company expanded geographically under Art Decio’s capable leadership, targeting emerging mobile housing markets in retiree states, such as Florida. Another important facet of the new CEO’s administration was a movement toward near-total reliance on third-party suppliers for materials. Whereas many mobile home manufacturers at that time produced some of their own cabinets and building supplies, Art Decio preferred to order virtually everything from outside sources. By having suppliers deliver inventory on a “just in time” basis, Skyline was able to minimize the need for warehouse space, reduce waste, and better control inventory. Decio kicked off the 1960s by taking Skyline public. At the time of its initial public offering, the company boasted an impressive string of profitable years and no corporate debt. Skyline’s second milestone of 1960 was to diversify its business by opening a travel trailer and RV plant in Elkhart. This reunion of the mobile home and RV industries made sense on several levels for the company. Since the industry split in the early 1950s, both the RV and housing segments had remained well represented in northern Indiana. Dozens of RV manufacturers–and the second- and third-tier suppliers supporting them–had production facilities in the region. In addition, many of the materials required to produce mobile homes corresponded with the materials needed to produce RVs. Therefore, Skyline’s addition of an RV division allowed for certain inventory and cost efficiencies. Skyline also used the proceeds from its 1960 IPO to expand its mobile home business via acquisition. In 1962, the company acquired Homette Corporation and Layton Homes Corporation. The following year, Skyline bought Buddy Mobile Homes, and in 1966, added Academy Mobile Homes to its growing portfolio. The company also changed its name from Skyline Coach to Skyline Corporation. During the 1960s and early 1970s, low interest rates and a generally stable economy had combined to keep the manufactured housing business in high gear. According to the Manufactured Housing Institute, the industry hit an all-time high in 1972, reporting shipments of more than half a million units. In 1973 and 1974, however, interest rates began to climb, and housing sales began to plunge. Shipments of manufactured homes declined by 42 percent in 1974 and another 35 percent in 1975. The RV industry, likewise, fell on hard times in the 1970s. The OPEC oil embargo of 1973 and the resulting hike in gas prices put the brakes on recreational driving. This, combined with the rising interest rates, caused RV sales to fall off. Already contending with bleak market conditions, Skyline and other producers of manufactured housing were confronted with still another hurdle in 1976. Concerned about mobile homes’ safety, Congress enacted legislation that set stricter standards for their construction. Officially changing the product’s name to “manufactured housing,” the government required all mobile homes to meet stringent manufacturing, fire, electricity, and safety codes. The tougher requirements–and the costs associated with compliance–spurred a wave of closings and consolidations in the manufactured housing industry. Despite the odds against it, Skyline managed to remain solvent and successful throughout the industry slump, never once posting an annual loss. In 1978, the company expanded again, purchasing Country Vans Conversion. The market for RVs improved in the early years of the new decade; between 1980 and 1984, the number of vehicles shipped increased by more than 80 percent. The market for manufactured housing was slower to rebound, however, with sales remaining at levels much lower than they were in the early 1970s. Skyline continued to show improved earnings and remained debt-free–but to do so, it had to trim costs and streamline operations. In 1983, the company had 28 operational and six idle manufactured housing plants. Just four years later, cost-cutting measures had reduced that number to 23 operational and two idle plants. Skyline also hedged against further economic downturns by amassing cash reserves. In 1987, one-fourth of the company’s pretax income came from interest. The 1990s ushered in better interest rates than consumers had seen in more than a decade, and sales of manufactured housing picked up immediately. Although Skyline’s sales also improved, the company was unable to keep pace with its competitors and consequently surrendered part of its market share. Management attributed the market share loss to a lack of capacity in areas where the manufactured housing markets were expanding fastest. In an April 1996 interview with Investor’s Business Daily, Decio cited Georgia and Texas as two such rapid-growth markets, pointing out that Skyline did not have a strong manufacturing presence in either state. “Even though we’re a national company, at certain times we can’t keep up,” he said. To bolster output and remedy the situation, Skyline initiated an aggressive expansion plan. In 1994, the company upgraded its manufactured housing plant in Sugarcreek, Ohio, and its RV plant in McMinnville, Oregon. The following year, Skyline laid out another $10 million to renovate four more facilities–in Indiana, Pennsylvania, Florida, and Louisiana. In addition to boosting production, the upgrades were designed to allow all facilities to manufacture a wider range of products. The expansion program paid off; between 1992 and 1995, net income improved by more than 50 percent. In 1997, Skyline’s sales of manufactured housing fell slightly, and the resulting dip in total sales broke the company’s five-year record of modest but steady annual increases. A major reason for the decline was an exceptionally harsh winter, which slowed housing sales in some parts of the United States. Another factor was a general softening in the demand for manufactured housing nationwide, which led many of Skyline’s dealers to reduce their inventories. The company’s RV division had a better year, however. RV sales increased by more than 14 percent over 1996 sales, reversing the previous year’s RV industry slump. The year 1998 saw a flip-flop in the fortunes of Skyline’s two business segments. The market for manufactured housing improved in the second half of the year, driving up Skyline’s housing sales. In addition to the overall market improvement, the housing segment benefited from a stronger demand for multi-section homes, which commanded higher prices than single-section homes. On the other hand, Skyline’s recreational vehicle sales decreased in 1998, despite the fact that, industry wide, demand for the vehicles increased. Skyline appeared to have both its business segments on track in 1999. The market for manufactured housing remained relatively steady through the first half of the year. More significantly, consumer demand for multi-section homes continued to grow, pushing the company’s housing dollars up despite a slight decrease in actual units sold. As its quality continued to improve, manufactured housing was expected to become an attractive option for a wider range of homeowners. Skyline’s RV business also appeared to be on the upswing as 1999 progressed, showing gains both in units sold and in sales income. This increase was due in large part to overall favorable economic conditions and increased discretionary income, which allowed consumers to spend more for recreational products and activities. Since its inception in the 1950s, Skyline had been more of a tortoise than a hare, taking few risks and growing slowly and sure-footedly. As the company prepared to leave the 20th century behind, it showed no signs of altering that approach. Because demand in both of Skyline’s major markets was so closely tied to economic cycles, it was impossible to predict how the company might fare in the future. So long as the general economy remained strong, however, it seemed likely that Skyline would thrive.

Years built

Models

Pictures

1961 Layton Vintage Trailer
My 63′ Layton — vintage camper trailer
Vintage RV: Restored 1971 Layton Travel Trailer
1967 Layton Vintage Camper

 

Kit

Kit

1945-2008

Kit Manufacturing Company – Long Beach California

Kit was founded in October 1945 in Long Beach, California. Its first product was a small “teardrop” trailer, so-called for its shape. It was to be sold as a kit, with its components assembled by buyers and attached to the rear of a motor vehicle. The manufacturing “plant” was a latticed-front fruit stand in Pico Rivera, and the original plan called for building 60 units. However, the kit proposal was soon dropped, and the company began manufacturing prefabricated but fully assembled trailers.

The company’s initial model, the Kit Kamper, made its debut in February 1946 at a trade show in Hollywood’s Gilmore Stadium. Because of a shortage of materials so soon after the end of World War II, the 12 show models had an unusual exterior combination of war-surplus aluminum and fiberglass fenders. Inside, the trailer included all the comforts of home, including an innerspring mattress and an all-aluminum kitchen with butane stove and icebox. The response exceeded all expectations, with nearly 500 orders booked. About 3,500 Kit Kampers were produced and delivered in 1946.

In January 1947 Kit moved to a 100,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in the harbor area of Long Beach. Shortly after, production began on a larger, 8-by-14-foot travel trailer. Demand for the two models exceeded production. Kit trailers were popularized through department stores and new and used car dealers and also received publicity as prizes in the annual Soap Box Derby and the “Queen for a Day” radio program. A number of units were flown into Buffalo and Detroit in the dead of winter.

By the end of 1947 production had jumped from the original two per week to 120, and sales had climbed from $1,000 to $50,000 weekly. A few years later Kit secured an order from the federal government, which needed trailers as temporary housing.

Pocapalia became president of Kit in 1956, and the company began producing mobile homes at a plant in Caldwell, Idaho, in 1958. A second Caldwell plant, for RVs, was opened in 1964. In fiscal 1968 (ending October 31, 1968), the last year before Kit became a public company, it earned net income of $688,000 on net sales of $22 million. Common stock was initially offered at $14.50 a share, but the majority of the outstanding shares remained in the hands of existing holders. Pocapalia, who assumed the position of chairman as well as president in 1971, retained about 30 percent of the stock. Arnold J. Romeyn, who joined the company in 1946 and was serving as secretary and treasurer, retained about 25 percent. The company’s long-term debt was $1.8 million in 1970.

Kit, at this time, was building mobile homes that retailed between $4,300 and $7,500, and manufactured housing from $8,150 and $12,000. Recreation vehicles offered were the truck-mounted Kit Kamper and Road Ranger models; the Kit Companion Vacation Trailer, top seller in the Pacific Northwest; and the recently introduced Sportsmaster travel trailer. Mobile homes and manufactured housing were accounting for about 70 percent of sales; recreational vehicles for the remainder. The company was selling its products through a network of 700 dealers in 30 states.

The early 1970s were a period of great expansion for the company. In fiscal 1972, when sales reached $47 million, Kit opened plants to manufacture Road Rangers in Chino, California, and in McPherson, Kansas; and a mobile-home facility in Duncanville, Texas. Kit was continuing to produce both mobile homes and RVs in Caldwell, and mobile homes in McPherson; Mount Vernon, Ohio; Forest Grove, Oregon; and Long Beach, Riverside, and Vacaville, California.

The 1973 Arab oil embargo and consequent economic recession struck a heavy blow to Kit’s business, with sales dropping from $54.2 million in fiscal 1973 to $32.5 million in fiscal 1974. The company lost $2.2 million in 1974 and $465,000 in 1975. Its stock, once trading as high as $25 a share, fell as low as $1 a share in 1974 and never topped $2.75 a share in 1975. The long-term debt widened to $3.2 million at the end of fiscal 1975. The company soon turned the corner, however, and earned $1.6 million in fiscal 1978 on record revenues of $61.9 million. Recreational vehicles now accounted for about 60 percent of sales.

Kit sold its Riverside and Duncanville plants in 1976. The following year it sold its idle Mount Vernon facility and opened a third McPherson plant. In 1979 the company was producing mobile homes in single, double, and triple width, ranging in length from 36 to 70 feet and in width from 14 to 40 feet, with floor area from less than 1,000 to more than 2,300 square feet. They retailed from under $15,000 to over $40,000. Travel trailers were designed to be towed behind passenger vehicles and campers to fit in pickup-truck beds. Fifth-wheel travel trailers, introduced in 1972 under the Mark V name, were intended to be towed behind and attached to special couplers in the beds of pickup trucks. Mini-motor homes, built on van truck chassis, were introduced in 1976. Kit products were being sold by 394 dealers in 25 states and three Canadian provinces.

The second energy crisis that followed the Iranian revolution of 1978 ended this brief period of prosperity. Net sales plummeted all the way to $28.8 million in fiscal 1980, during which the company, following a loss of $741,000 in fiscal 1979, incurred a deficit of $1.5 million. RV sales, badly hurt by gasoline shortages, fell to only 37 percent of the company total in 1980 from 60 percent in 1978. Mini-motor homes and Kit Kampers were discontinued, and the number of Kit dealers dropped to 208 in 22 states and two Canadian provinces. The company closed its RV plant in Chino and its mobile-home plant in Forest Grove. A Caldwell plant was converted from RVs to mobile homes, and in 1981 the company was operating facilities only in Caldwell and McPherson.

Kit returned to profitability in fiscal 1981. Recreational vehicles once again topped mobile homes in sales the following year. The company introduced a new line of lightweight travel trailers suitable for hauling by the current models of smaller, more fuel-efficient motor vehicles. Brand names for its RVs during this period included Royal Oaks, Oak Crest, Oak View, Fairview, Sea Crest, Golden Sunrise, Chateau, and Regal.

Kit’s sales, however, did not approach the record 1978 figure during the early 1980s. Profits were modest, and in fiscal 1983 the company actually lost $740,000. The culprit was the mobile-home business, which fell into deficit in fiscal 1982 and did not return to profitability until five years later. In January 1983 Kit announced that the manufactured-housing product line was being overhauled, aimed at accommodating demand for units that were lower priced and constructed more like site-built homes. During fiscal 1984 mobile homes accounted for only 27 percent of company sales.

In fiscal 1987 Kit topped its 1978 highs with sales of $68.1 million and net income of $1.8 million. Increased interest rates on conventional, site-built housing were said to have given manufactured houses a competitive advantage, resulting in an upturn of sales. The RV business was also doing well that year, with Royal Oaks, Oak Crest, Golden State, and Limited models selling for between $19,000 and $45,000.

After Kit reached a new sales record of $73.8 million in fiscal 1988, the mediocre economic climate of the following years took a toll on its business. Revenues declined each successive year through fiscal 1992, when they fell to $55.5 million. Although the company remained in the black, the RV sector lost money in 1991 and 1992, when a new management team was brought in. Its deficit widened in fiscal 1993, despite a sales gain of 11 percent to 3,335 units. The company as a whole lost $33,000 on sales of $59.1 million that year.

Kit’s McPherson manufactured-home plant was destroyed in a 1992 tornado. Production continued at Caldwell, where about 500 homes were produced in 1993, along with RVs. In 1993 the company began work on a second Caldwell facility–opened in 1994–behind the main building, in order to double its production of manufactured homes, most of which were being placed in the western states. In making the announcement, Kit spokesman Ed Tucker declared that “Public awareness and acceptance have increased year by year. … The majority of homes we sell go on private property available for 30-year land-home financing. The homes we build are an affordable value.” In 1994 they ranged in floor area from 1,100 to 2,500 square feet and were selling at $28,000 to $90,000.

Kit expanded its sales network for manufactured housing in 1995 to take in three more Western states: Wyoming, Colorado, and parts of northern Arizona. The company had been selling its homes in Idaho, Washington, Oregon, Utah, Nevada, and Montana, with Utah and Idaho the biggest markets. About 1,400 manufactured homes were produced in 1994. Approximately 91 percent were double- and triple-wide homes, with the remaining nine percent single-wide models starting in size at about 700 square feet.

The company’s RV business turned around in 1994, when sales rose more than 50 percent, to 5,009 units, moving Kit into the top 10 in this field. Produced in Caldwell, the 35-foot-long Companion Cordova was its largest model, with living-room and bedroom walls that slid out by pressing a button. Produced in McPherson and selling for $21,000, the 33-foot-long Sportsmaster fifth-wheeler was a “toy hauler for the guys” with a 10-foot rear patio that could carry snow machines, golf carts, bicycles, motorcycles, Sea Doo watercraft, or all-terrain vehicles. A Kit executive said the market consisted of people age 45 to 65 who “sell their home and want to travel.” Selling for between $9,000 and $32,000, the company’s RV models had carpeted hardwood floors, kitchen skylights, solar panels, electric brakes, deluxe range/ovens, enlarged galleys, and power roof vents.

Kit opened a new RV manufacturing facility in Caldwell in 1995, about three miles from the plant producing manufactured homes and the Road Ranger and Companion RVs. This new plant, aimed at meeting demand in the Northwest and Canada, initially produced the 33-foot Sportsman fifth-wheeler but eventually was to manufacture all 21 models in the Sportsmaster line, ranging up from a 19-foot trailer selling for $8,000. About 2,800 Sportsmasters a year were being produced in McPherson at this time. Kit’s RV production reached 5,516 in 1995.

Kit’s sales rose by about 50 percent to $89.7 million in fiscal 1994, and its net income reached a record $1.9 million. Sales increased to $101.5 million in fiscal 1995, but net income was only $1.3 million due to new-production and plant expansions and consolidations, and the company lost $53,000 on manufactured housing. There was no long-term debt in January 1996. Pocapalia increased his stake in Kit from 30 to 46 percent in 1994, when Romeyn sold his 25-percent holding back to the company, which retired the shares.

Recreational vehicles accounted for 73 percent of Kit’s sales in 1995. They measured from 16 to 36 feet in length and provided sleeping accommodations for two to 10 people, with over 50 different floor plans offered. Components and accessories included name-brand appliances, radial tires, rubber roofs, and fiberglass insulation throughout. Interior features included an entertainment center with AM/FM cassette stereo, skylights in the bath and living areas, queen-size bed, microwave oven, and ducted air conditioning and heating system. Several models had slide-out features for interior expansion of the living room and master bedroom. Awnings were available and could be converted into an enclosed patio.

The company’s RV product lines included Sportsmaster, Road Ranger, Companion, and Patio Hauler. Retail prices ranged between $9,500 and $45,000. Some 239 independent dealers were distributing the company’s RVs throughout the United States, 32 in Canada, and five in Japan.

Kit’s Manufactured Housing Division was producing homes in 40 available floor plans ranging from 750 to over 2,500 square feet, towed by truck to locations where they were set up and connected to utilities. Retail prices, exclusive of land costs, ranged from $25,000 to $115,000. Distribution was through a network of approximately 50 dealers in nine western states.

Most models included walk-in closets, spacious open areas, and Roman tubs with special showers. The Sea Crest was the smallest. Sierra models were double- and triple-wide, with an array of styles and custom features. The spacious Kit Special home was offered in a popular double-section configuration. The Golden State line was described as outstanding value for individuals placing a premium on comfort and luxury. Designed specifically with subdivision application in mind, the Briercrest came ready to attach a site-built garage.

Kit, at the end of fiscal 1995, owned production facilities in McPherson and Caldwell, where it also owned a warehouse and leased a production facility. It also owned an idle plant in Chino, available for lease, and was leasing its executive and administrative offices in Long Beach.

Years built

1945-2008

Models

  • Camper – 11 ft
  • Sportsmaster – 11 ft
  • Model 10 – 13 ft
  • Companion – 16 ft
  • Royal Chataeu – 23 ft
  • Kamper – 12 ft
  • Chateau – 23 ft
  • Jetstream – 19.5 ft
  • Companion Stowaway – 16 ft
  • Companion 1500 – 15 ft
  • Companion 1700 – 17 ft

Interiors

Ash paneling and cabinets (Golden State)

Standard Features

Pictures

1965 Kit Companion
1947 Kit Teardrop
1946 KIT Manufacturing Teardrop Trailer
1947 Kit Manufacturing teardrop camper trailer

Some owners

Drew and alicia keller coeur d alene, id —drewkeller2010@hotmail.com— 1949 kit ten, 1967 15′ companion,

Ideal

Ideal

History

Ideal Industries, El Monte, CA

Ideal of Idaho, Inc. Caldwell Idaho

Manufacturer Information

Ideal and Cal-Craft trailers, Ideal Industries, 2328 N. Chico Avenue, El Monte, California USA FOrest8-9817

Founded in 1948 and located with many other trailer manufacturers in Southern California. Ideal moved to production facilities to Caldwell Idaho in 1978. They made trailers until 1982.

Years built

1948-1982

Ideal was last built in 1978 and the company Ideal of Idaho, Inc. last built in 1982.

Models

Most models presented a rounded roof line and large front window.

  • Model 17 – 17 ft
  • Model 20 – 20 ft
  • Model 23 – 23 ft

Pictures

1969 Ideal 21′ Travel Trailer
1970 Ideal Travel Trailer
1964 Ideal Vintage Trailer
1958 Ideal
1953 Ideal Travel Trailer

Some owners

— Jimmie Bertram if interested email me will send pic

http://www.engine-decals.com Ideal head decals are available in the sunburst or compass pattern in yellow and red, very nice reproduction.

HERE IS A LINK TO OUR VINTAGE IDEAL FACEBOOK GROUP! Join us!

https://www.facebook.com/groups/vintageideals/

Holiday Rambler

Holiday Rambler

Wakarusa, Indiana

1953- Present

Manufacturer History and Firsts

Holiday Ramblers are often overlooked as the vintage classics they truly are. The Holiday Rambler Company was founded by Richard Klingler in his home town of Wakarusa, ten miles south of Elkhart, Indiana, where he started building trailer parts in a chicken coop and assembling the trailers outdoors in the 1950s. The first Holiday Rambler recreational vehicle was a travel trailer introduced to the public in 1953 by the Klingler Corporation. A fully restored example is in the RV museum in Elkhart, Indiana Always an industry pioneer, Holiday Rambler was responsible for many firsts; built-in refrigerators, holding tanks, aerodynamic radius-ed corners and originated the 48-inch-wide dinette/bed concept. In 1961, Holiday Rambler’s introduction of aluminum body framing ushered in a new era of lighter, stronger and more durable recreational vehicles (RVs). This aluminum frame (Alumaframe) became the standard for lighter and stronger RVs for 40 years. As Holiday Rambler moved into motorhomes, they were the first with tag axles and the kitchen slide-out revolutionized “interior engineering” in the field. Holiday Rambler was sold to Harley-Davidson in 1986 and later in 1996 to the Monaco Coach Corporation where its future, then under Navistar International Corp., was difficult in 2010 as it was for most motorhome manufacturers. In May 2013, Holiday Rambler was sold by Navistar International Corp. to Allied Specialty Vehicles, reviving its luxury RV status it enjoys today. With such innovation and heritage, it is surprising the trailers are barely mentioned in vintage trailer circles. However a large and growing community of proud HR owners have created 2 group pages on facebook, sharing and collecting information. I am just a proud member, my 43 year old girl has beautiful lines and a solid riveted aluminum body and framing. In truth, I could do without the shag carpeting 😉 Many owners in our community, document revamps to a late 50s to 60s style where like all other vintage trailers, the interior aesthetic is representative of some of the best in function and beauty. And just as many are faithful to restoring the original vintage features for every year represented. As equally appreciated at our facebook group, are those who break with reno tradition and remake their interiors with creative and innovative solutions that compliment the Ramblin On! mantra and the owners unique vision of comfort and esthetics. . Feel free to take a browse at the Vintage Holiday Rambler Owners Group’s page. 1953 to 1989 trailers are collected here along with a document and knowledge base about models, layouts, repairs, parts and practical how to’s on many topics provided by our 1000 and growing membership. We do not discriminate between Holiday Rambler age or model for membership and have had requests for advice up to 1989 models, which being over a quater century old are included as vintage. Come on by to see the long lost cousin of the vintage trailer community, considered by some; The lost Heir to the throne of vintage trailer design and innovation, by those of us who know

Yes, I am trailer proud!

Years built

1953 through 1959 by Mr. Klinger but was continuously in production as Holiday Rambler still up to present day

Models

  • Ramblerette
  • Holiday Vacationer – 19ft
  • Holiday Trav’ler – 22 ft
  • Holiday Rambler – 15 ft, 17.5 ft
  • Royal Holiday

Holiday Ramblers from the mid-60s can be recognized by the quilted diamond band and the stamped emblem along their sides. The USA shaped logo and color-keyed stripe distinctively branded the models.

Pictures

Vintage Holiday Rambler
1967 Holiday Rambler 21′ Vintage Travel Trailer
Dream Home Fully Renovated Vintage Holiday Rambler with Beautiful Modern Interior
Vintage Holiday Rambler
1968 Holiday Rambler 27′ Retro Campers
1963 Vintage Holiday Rambler
1969 vintage holiday rambler travel trailer
1973 Vintage Holiday Rambler “Vacationer”
Vintage Holiday Rambler

Vintage Camper Tour – 1965 Holiday Rambler

 

Some owners

Alexander Lae

Drew and Alicia Keller drewkeller2010@hotmail.com 1968 HR 27′ trailer

Kay Newman 1972 HR 31′ Holiday Rambler Trailer

Vintage Holiday Rambler Owners Facebook group, all welcomed: https://www.facebook.com/groups/70sholidayramblers/

Holiday Rambler Club: http://www.hrrvc.org/

Hi-Lo

Hi-Lo

Manufacturer Information

Hi-Lo Trailer Company, Inc. was founded in 1955 as Snyder’s Hi-Lo Trailers. In 1957 they dropped the “Snyder’s” and became Hi-Lo Trailer Company, Inc.

They have been located in north central Ohio, building the worlds only telescoping travel trailer ever since, after the demise of the similar Tow-Low.

Hi-Lo Trailer Company, Inc. 500 S Main Street Bellville, OH 44813 Phone: (419) 886-0066 Fax: (419) 886-0099

Original ads and pictures available at http://www.popupcamperhistory.com/hiloimages.html

Unique features/Options

Hi-lo trailer has an upper half (slightly larger than the lower half) that can be lowered down over the lower half to a total height of about five feet for reduced wind resistance during travel and smaller storage requirements; these otherwise contain everything other travel trailers have (except for a full-height closet).

Videos/Pictures

 

Vintage Trailer make/model: 1978 Hi-Lo

1957 Hi-Low

Hi-Lo Renovation
Hi-Lo Trailers Through the Years
1957 Hi-Low
Vintage Hilo Travel Trailer National Park Art

Some owners

Kevin in NC with a 1967 HiLo Wander. john & tammy nc with a 1964 snyder hilo voyager.

Terry (Coach Industries, Inc.)

TERRY, COACH INDUSTRIES, INC.

Terry Travel Trailer Vintage Style Decal

“You can take it with you!”

Manufacturer Information

Manufactured by: Western Trailer Service/ Terry Coach Industries, Inc. Huntington Park, California

Noted for building travel trailers and fifth wheel trailers, Terry has been a popular, long-running name in the participation of vacation as well as camping excursions. Existing since the 1950s, recreational vehicle company Terry Coach Industries was acquired by Fleetwood in 1964. In addition to trailers, Terry began constructing park model units during the 1990s but discontinued that product line-up after the 2002 model year. Production of Terry brand trailers ended after the 2009 model year.

Years built

1948-2009

Models

  • 1948 Rambler 12ft
  • 1952 Rambler 15ft
  • 1959 Terry 17ft
  • 1965 Travel-Pak 19ft
  • 1969 Travel-Pak 18 ft

 

Unique features/Options

Steel Truss sidewalls

Baked-enamel aluminum skin

Known for its two-tone canned-ham travel trailers, Terry Coach Industries woos RV show-goers in the days of Marilyn Monroe.

Pictures

Terry Coach Industries has a long history of producing popular travel trailers and fifth wheels, dating back to the 1950s. This recreational vehicle company was acquired by Fleetwood in 1964, which led to the development of our Throwback Thursday Vintage RV, the Fleetwood Terry 20T.

1_381_1905026_41279890.jpg;maxwidth=653;maxheight=490;mode=padAlthough production of Terry trailers ended after 2009, these travel trailers are still a great vehicle for vacations and camping excursions. The Fleetwood Terry 20T comes with a full kitchen area and stove, dining area, seating and more. Plenty of window space and storage keep this unit feeling open and airy. The unit pictured above was on sale on RVUSA.com for less than $4,000.

1961 Terry Coach
1966 TERRY

Trailer Life Magazine, May 1954
Terry Owners Manual and Warranty Certificate
1966 Print Ad Terry Travel Trailers Made in Riverside, CA

Vintage Terry Trailers

Vintage Terry Travel Trailers etc

http://engine-decals.com Very nice reproduction decals for Terry travel trailers from 1961 to 1978

Shasta

Shasta Travel Trailer

History

The Shasta Trailer Company started out in 1941 by building mobile home trailers for the US Armed Forces in a Los Angeles, California plant. After WWII, they sold mobile homes under the Cozy Cruiser brand. 1952 was the first year for the Shasta brand to roll off the assembly line in Van Nuys. Models from 14′ to 35′ were offered. The boom in mobile homes and travel trailers was in full swing and the public couldn’t get enough of the Shasta brand. In April of 1958, Shasta opened the Goshen, Indiana plant to keep up with demand.

The distinctive wings were added to the Shasta line in the late 50’s and continued on the trailers and even some motorhomes until the early 80’s. During this time, the Shasta brand was the best selling trailer brand in the US. That is why, after all this time, “Vintage” Shastas are still so popular and available everywhere.

By early 1963, Shasta had added another production plant in Leola, Pennsylvania and was up to 5 different models of trailer. Later in that same year, the all-new model 1500 was offered to 5-star reviews. Again proving to the public, that the value that was built into the Shasta brand was well worth the low price!

In 1964 came the first of the “square-ish” Shastas with the introduction of the redesigned Compat model. It’s leaner, cleaner lines were a sign of things to come and was very well received by the general public. By late 1966, all of the Shasta trailers would be designed with the more modern look. Production plants were also added in Grapevine, Texas and Battle Ground, Washington.

During 1969, the brand new Loflyte was being offered and was a big hit with the RVing public. A sixth plant was added in Columbia, South Carolina as the Shastas were in great demand. And by 1973 there were nearly 500 Shasta dealers throughout the U.S. offering all new models with stylish interiors and all-new exterior styling with bold striping along the sides. The wings were smaller than before, but they were still there!

At some point in time, Shasta trailers were produced by Shasta Industries, a division of the W.R. Grace Company (this information obtained from a 1975 model year owners manual).

Coachman Industries bought the Shasta brand in 1976. They continued making Shasta trailers and motorhomes until as recently as 2004. At one time during the early 1980’s, the Shasta name was on nearly every conceivable type of RV…Motorhomes, 5th-wheels, travel trailers, and even some pop-up campers.

The Shasta brand seems to have disappeared with no goodbye and no fanfare. Not really a fitting end to such an amazing part of American history. Until it’s disappearance, Shasta had been the longest continuous producer of trailers in the United States.

In the summer of 2000, Shasta cut their model lines down significantly. When I asked why, the staff at the plant in Middlebury, IN said Coachman was looking to reduce the number of models/lines offered. Coachman was bought out by River Forest. In 2009 Forest River made the Shasta Airflyte 12′ with a great retro look for one year but discontnued it because it would compete with their small lightweight trailer called the R Pod.

As of late 2010, Shasta is once again producing Travel Trailers and Fifth wheels.The company is a stand alone division of Forest River, and offer Oasis, Revere and Flyte travel trailers and Phoenix fifth wheelsfor the 2013/2014 model years.

We are restoring a 1955 Shasta trailer but I cant’find any that look like ours. It is all alumimum with only one window on the sides that open top & bottom. It has a full stove with 4 burners,ice box on the door side of the trailer. The Shasta also has a heater in it between the stove & sink area. Our trailer has a full bed in back with a hamik on the top a kitchen table in front that folds down to a bed.

If you know anyone that has a 55 Shasta like ours would you send them our e-mail address redcreek@fidalgo.net. Thanks you

Shasta travel trailers were recreational vehicles originally built between 1941 and 2004. Founded by industry pioneer Robert Gray, the firm was originally situated in a small factory in Los Angeles, California to provide housing for members of the US Armed Forces. With the growth in sales over the following 30 years, the “home” factory in L.A. moved to three steadily larger facilities in Southern California, in addition to six other factories established across the country to better serve the regional markets. At the time of its purchase by the W.R. Grace Company in 1972, Shasta was the largest seller of recreational vehicles in the United States (also including motorhomes in its inventory). Coachmen Industries, Inc. bought the firm from Grace in 1976.

The high quality and low price of Shastas made them a favorite with campers all over the United States.

Shasta Loflyte trailer, built in 1971, currently located at Lost Valley Educational Center

Same Shasta Loflyte Trailer in the Snow in March

The “wings” on the rear sides were a visible identifier in the 1960s and beyond. The name was sold to Coachmen Industries. Coachmen marketed Shasta branded travel trailers until 2004. Only vintage trailers were available until 2008 when the brand was reintroduced complete with its identifying wings. The new trailers have updated art deco interiors and are all electric. Their features include stainless steel microwaves, stainless steel sinks and mini blinds, hot plate cooktops, wet baths and entertainment features – including a 19″ LCD television.

In 2010, Shasta RV re-emerged as a division of Forest River Inc. In March 2012, Mark Lucas became the president and general manager of Shasta RV. The company has grown to include a sales office, multiple production facilities and a finished goods staging area.

In 2015, Lucas introduced the 1961 Airflyte re-issue with production limited to 1,941 units, honoring the company’s first year in business. Re-issues were available in 16-foot and 19-foot floorplans and in three two-tone colors: Matador Red, Seafoam Green and Butternut Yellow, all with Polo White. These models included the signature “Z” stripe and the iconic wings. However, Shasta ended up recalling 1,736 of the re-issued Trailers for window and tire issues.[1] [2]

Shasta RV currently builds the Oasis, Revere and Flyte lines of travel trailers and the Phoenix line of fifth wheel travel trailers.

Vintage Shasta Trailer VIN Numbers


Beautifully restored vintage Shasta trailer with iconic wings, from the 1960's

If you’re checking out a vintage trailer for sale, you need to thoroughly inspect it and ask the seller a lot of questions. One of the most important details you need to confirm is that the seller has a “title” document (sometimes called a “Pink Slip”), verifying that he/she owns the trailer. In addition, you need to make sure that the VIN (i.e., “Vehicle Identification Number”) printed on the title document, matches the VIN number attached to the trailer.

On vintage Shasta trailers the factory stamped a unique VIN numberPhoto shows the location of the VIN number stamped into an original vintage Shasta trailer frameon each trailer’s frame, near the tongue. You should be able to find the VIN number stamped into the curb-side (i.e., “door side”) leg of the tongue frame, on the outside face (see the red outlined area in the photo at the right). You should also find a small VIN plate welded to the inside face of the street-side leg of the tongue frame (the green outlined area in the photo at the right). If this is an un-restored trailer, these numbers on the frame may be obscured by rust, dirt and peeling paint. You may need to get up-close and use a flashlight to make out the digits. If the seller will let you, try lightly sanding the area to remove some of the built-up gunk, and expose the numbers. If you can’t find any numbers, or the numbers have been altered (filled-in, filed-off, scratched off, etc.), or the numbers don’t match the VIN number printed on the title you should probably walk away. Getting the State to help you sort out the descrepancy will most likely be a difficult and hair-pulling experience. Worst case; this trailer is stolen and the “seller” doesn’t really own it. Just walk away.

The VIN number printed on the title document may match just the digits on the welded-on plate, or it may match the longer number stamped into the curb-side of the frame. Regardless of which way the trailer was originally titled, make sure the VIN number printed on the title matches one of the numbers on the trailer’s tongue frame.

Photo of the welded-on VIN number plate installed by the factory on a vintage Shasta trailer frame
Technically, the number on the small welded-on plate (click on the photo at the left) contains the actual VIN number assigned by the Shasta factory. There doesn’t appear to be a consistent scheme used by all of the Shasta factories thru-out the production years, for assigning these VIN numbers. Each number is unique, but don’t expect to be able to determine the trailer’s month or year of manufacture, based on the VIN number.

The number stamped on the curb-side of the frame Photo shows the location of the VIN number stamped into the side of a vintage Shasta trailer frame by the factorywill usually be longer, incorporating the number from the welded-on plate plus some other letters and numbers (click on the photo at the right). Generally, Shasta used the letter codes to indicate which factory location built the trailer, but de-coding the meaning of these letters tends to be an inexact science. Some trailerites believe that the extra numbers stamped onto the curb-side of the frame may indicate the trailer’s production sequence number (it is believed that during the 60’s, the Northridge plant stamped a ‘PA’ after the VIN and followed this ‘PA’ with a sequence number, as shown in the photo) within that manufacturing plant – possibly indicating the year the trailer was built, but again that is just conjecture.

Here is a partial list of the the “Shasta Plant” letter codes you may find included in the string of characters stamped into the frame:
‘C’ –   Built at Shasta’s Van Nuys, California plant
‘CA’ – Built at Shasta’s Van Nuys, California plant
‘DS’ – Built at Shasta’s Northridge, California plant
‘ES’ – Built at Shasta’s Northridge, California plant
‘FS’ – Built at Shasta’s Northridge, California plant
‘GS’ – Built at Shasta’s Northridge, California plant
‘HS’ – Built at Shasta’s Northridge, California plant
‘P’ –    Built at Shasta’s Leola, Pennsylvania plant
‘S’ –    Built at Shasta’s Columbia, South Carolina plant
‘T’ –    Built at Shasta’s Grapevine, Texas plant
‘V’ –    Built at Shasta’s Goshen, Indiana plant

What Year is My Vintage Shasta Trailer?


Beautifully restored vintage Shasta trailer with iconic wings, from the 1960's
Trying to figure out what year your vintage Shasta trailer was built, will often involve some research and sleuthing. Original production unit counts from the Shasta factory have been lost to time, and finding original dealer brochures and pamphlets can be very difficult. In addition, registering a travel trailer back in the 1950’s and 1960’s was often a casual exercise and it wasn’t uncommon for a new trailer to be licensed by the state with the wrong year on the registration document. Adding to an already murky situation, trailer owners often lost track of the

registration paperwork for “that old trailer sitting behind the barn”. You would think that with the large number of trailers produced by Shasta and still in existence today, that tracking down your vintage Shasta trailer’s birth date would be a fairly simple task. Unfortunately, it’s usually not.

So to make your quest a little easier, here’s a chronological list of Shasta trailer features and design changes over the years:

 The Shasta company has been building trailers since 1942, producing their “Cozy Cruiser” trailer models through model year 1951. The company began building “Shasta” brand trailers in model year 1952.

 For model years 1952 through 1957, Shasta trailers didn’t change Photo shows a restored 1956 Shasta 1400 trailer with no wings on the sidemuch. During this era Shastas had no “wings”, but with a rounded profile front and back, no rear bumper, 3 separate window frames across the front, a wooden screen door and wonderful honey gold shellacked birch interior woodwork, these early Shastas are the epitome of the classic “canned ham” trailer. Shasta trailers were available in several different lengths but the overall shape and design features were very similar across the model range.

 Shasta introduced big changes starting with model year 1958. Picture of a restored 1960 Shasta trailer showing the new front profile introduced in model year 1958The most noticable change was in the front profile which now leaned forward at the top as it curved up into the roof, instead of the simple rounded front end on the 1952 – 1957 Shasta models. The other big change starting in 1958 was the pair of unique shiny ribbed “wings” that now adorned both sides of the trailer at the rear, jutting boldly backwards to evoke a whimsical feeling of “winged flight”. These wonderful wings were unique to the Shasta trailer and when you see a vintage trailer with wings today, you immediately recognize it as a Shasta. If your vintage Shasta trailer has the “upper leaning forward” front end but no wings, the wings may have been there originally but were removed by a previous owner at some point in the trailer’s life. Look for tell-tale screw holes in the siding at the upper back of the trailer, as a clue that your Shasta had wings when it left the factory and is therefore a post 1957 model. The 1958 models also now came with a heavy-duty u-channel bumper across the back of the trailer, that was welded solidly to the trailer’s frame. Shasta model years 1958-1960 generally share all of these attributes.

 More changes came along in 1961. Shasta trailers Photo of a vintage 1964 Shasta trailer showing new metal screen door and front profile first introduced in 1958now came with a light weight aluminum screen door instead of the classic old wooden screen door. For the interior, the old-fashioned radiased (rounded) corners on the cabinets were replaced with a modern right-angle corner. In addition, Shasta was now building some trailers with interior woodwork finished with a “modern” slightly milky finish instead of the traditional but more labor-intensive “golden amber” shellacked finish from previous years. The iconic “Shasta Wings” were still affixed to every Shasta, but now instead of the old wood-core “wrap-around” wings that stepped over the trailer’s side gutter molding, the gutter molding was notched to fit the new “flat” wings which now had an aluminum core and were attached to the side of the trailer using rubber spacers so the wing sat off the siding by about 1/2″.

 For model year 1965, Shasta introduced big changes again. The rounded front and rear exterior profiles were flattened quite a bit for a more modern “squared-off” design. But even with this new design direction, the beloved “Shasta wings” remained, and still appeared on the sides of Shasta trailers into the mid 80’s.

 These design changes may help you get close to determining your Shasta’s birth date, but wouldn’t it be great if the factory stamped the year-of-manufacture on your trailer? Fortunately, on some Shastas the factory left some tantalizing clues that could tell you exactly the year your Interior view of a vintage 1961 Shasta trailer showing the kitchen countertop and original sink, which may include the manufacture dateShasta was built. The first place to look is on the outside of the sink. Open the cabinet doors below the sink and closely examine the side of the sink and you may get lucky and find the manufacture date stamped there by the factory. Another place to check is behind the mirror attached to the hallway cabinet door. Carefully remove the screws that attach the mirror to the door and look for a date stamped on the door behind the mirror, or on the backside of the mirror itself.

Vintage Shasta Trailer Specifications, Weights and Dimensions

One of the most popular lines of trailers is the Shasta. Since the 1940’s, Shasta trailers have been very popular for their low cost, light weight and large amount of room compared to their compact size.  Easily recognized by its distinctive wings and “canned-ham” shape, the Shasta trailer was the best selling travel trailer brand from the 1950’s to the 1980’s. Shasta trailers quickly became a favorite of campers all over the United States due to their low price and high quality and old models are still very popular among vintage trailer restorers and collectors today.

Shasta trailers were manufactured from 1941 until 2004, then again since 2010.

Shasta’s many models offer a variety of interiors, exteriors, and degrees of self-containment which enables you to choose the model which best meets your tastes and needs.  With the table below, compare each vintage Shasta trailer model to help find the right one for you.

Vintage Shasta Trailer Models

Symbols: S=Standard Equipment, O=Optional Equipment, a=Optional Fold-out Double Bed, i=Ice, GE=Gas-Electric Refrigerator, b=Gas-Electric Refrigerator Optional, c=Double Bowl Sink, d=Pressurized Water System, e=Optional Portable Chemical Toilet, F=8 sq. ft. LP Gas-Electric Refrigerator Standard, g=30 lb Gas Cylinders, H=4 Burner Cook Stove Standard, L=4 Wheel Brakes Standard, r=Rating

Years built

1941 through 2004.

Models

Early 60s models:

+++++

1966 Shasta model 1500 – This is a very typical mid-60’s style of Shasta. Beginning in the mid-60’s the older rounded style of the 50’s was replaced with the more angular style as shown here. This unit had a grooved wood paneling, which replaced the birch ply interiors of the earlier years.

+++++

Later Models (Late 60s – Early 70s)

69 1400 rear

69 1400 kitchen

1969 Shasta Stratoflyte 20ft

Some owners

Annie Croissant, Oregon. 1964 Shasta Continental. In most internet sites it states that the Continental model was made in 1965 but my title states the year as 1964.

Connie, Imperial Beach, CA Year:1969 Model:1400. Don’t know what number owner I am but it’s in pretty good condition. I’m sure it can use some restoration instead of just decoration, but since nothing major is visible, I’m playing first!

Kevin Davis, NC 1974 Compact 13′ 1966 17′ SC

Donna Friar, Newaygo, Michigan 1963 Shasta 12′. My husband surprised me with this on Christmas morning several years ago. oldlikeme@sbcglobal.net

Scott & Lauren Frymoyer 1969 Shasta Astroflyte. I haven’t been able to find any information about this model in 1969, any help would be appreciated. It’s in pretty good shape and we’re using it as we try to fix and maintain her. l.frymoyer@comcast.net. With new information I now think it’s actually either a 66 or 67. It makes more sense as the general shape of the trailer fits those years.

Dan Hellier Raleigh NC. 16SC and 1400 , unsure exactly what years. Please check out NC RV Soutions at ncrvsolutions.com There is a picture link at the bottom of the web page.

Dave and Debby Looney, Springtown,TX 1971 Shasta Stratoflite We were lucky enough to get the title with the camper. We are doing a complete rebuild. We hope to go back with the walls tomorrow 10-21-07

Gary,Honesdale,PA 1959 AERFLYTE purchased new in 59 by my moms brother James Bryant and was kept in mint condition.I have had it two years and have towed it cross country two times. Gets lots of attention every where we go.I also have a mint 1960 15 ft. Zollinger.

Sam and Michelle Ishihara, Apex, NC, purchased Dan Hellier’s fully restored, 1969 Shasta 1400, in the summer of 2007. We affectionately dubbed it “Once in a Blue Moon” and we are having a blast. With 3 college kids at home, we run away every chance we get. We can’t stop smiling….:) Dan did a fantastic restoration!

Dave & Pat from Little River, SC, a 1975 RL 1750 manufactured in Leola, PA.

Ryan & Linda frizzell,Toledo, oh., Purchased new 2009 12′ shasta airflight while on vacation this year. downsized from 25′ white box. We also restore vintage trailers, curent project is a 1967 aristocrat 10’Lil Loafer.

Brad & Tricia Kiekintveld Holland, MI USA, purchased 2001 Shasta Ultraflight new in August, 2000. One of 6 units made in June, 2000 at Middlebury, IN. The ultraflight series lasted only one year, the 2001 model year our trailer was made is not documented. We were told the other 5 trailers went out west to a trailer show. We bought our trailer sight unseen, we were getting ready to order one, but the line was cancelled. To my knowledge, our model (2547 – front dinette, double bed bunks, both bunk beds are double beds) was the only 2001 Shasta trailers built in the Ultraflight series. The trailers had smooth sides, very light weight (3200lbs dry for my 25′ trailer) – Our trailer has the 60th anniversary package on it. To bad the production was stopped around 2004, up until then it was the longest manufacturered travel trailer in this country. I will look for the sales brochure and post it on this site.

Carole Rietman, West Olive, Mich [just a stone’s throw or so above Holland] bought a vintage in quite good shape – 1961 Shasta ?Aeroflyte from Jane in June of this year. It’s now in wonderful shape after a LOT of scrubbing, just needs a little TLC with some minor wood damage inside. Looking to replace the “wings” which did not come with it, unfortunately. FIRST time out camping in it today:-), July 19,2010. Has the registration paperwork and two full tanks of propane even.

Karen & Phil Henderson, South Carolina, 1971 Shasta Stratoflyte, 18′. It has a bathroom and a kitchen and even a closet! We have had to gut it though because a previous owner took the cover off of the vent over the propane refrigerator and it had severe water damage from sitting out in the weather for many years. She is in a covered garage now, so the renovations have begun. We have none of the original paperwork, but from the stickers on the side she was manufactured in Pennsylvania. The stove and oven work, but the refrigerator and water heater are dead. Going with an electric frig and a tankless water heater. Also looking into putting solar panels on her roof and a battery system just in case we decide to go off grid.

Bob and Phyllis in Irmo SC have a 1973 model 1400 and a 1956 model 1500. They can be seen at:http://thisoldcamper.com/

2015 Shasta Airflyte 16 Reissue Vintage Travel Trailer

A highly popular and sought-after Vintage travel trailer we are reposting for your perusal. Shasta’s Airflyte is still very popular in searches and (hopeful) purchases. Their reissue included lots of current updates that are, 3 years later, still very useful and current enough for most of our current technology as well. Enjoy the original overview and video walk-through at the end by Shasta’s owner.

MSRP: Starting at $15,000 USD (from 2015)

Length: 16’4″

2015-shasta-airflyte-16-reissue-travel-trailer-exterior

For 2015, Shasta has created a nearly exact replica of it’s iconic 1961 Shasta Airflyte 16SC Travel Trailer complete with the legendary Shasta wings! Shasta started in 1941 and to commemorate their 75th anniversary they are producing a limited construction of 1,941 trailers and will be available in all three original colors; Matador Red, Seafoam Green, and Butternut Yellow.

2015-shasta-airflyte-16-reissue-travel-trailer-interior

Shasta has paid close attention to duplicate every small detail down to the original Shasta logo magazine rack. The new Shasta Airflytes will also feature an all-in-one bathroom with a toilet and shower in place of the closet to meet the desires of today’s campers.

2015-shasta-airflyte-16-reissue-travel-trailer-interior-front

The Airflyte “canned ham trailer” has a vintage interior that remains close to the original, but with all modern appliances and plumbing. Some tweaks have been made though: for example, instead of a twin-size bed, the reproduction accommodates more people by allowing for a full bed. A bunk bed option is also available. This will feature the same full bed/dinette and bunks.

2015-shasta-airflyte-16-reissue-travel-trailer-kitchen

It comes with a dog-bone pattern Formica on the counter tops, and birch cabinet doors, as well as LED lighting. Tuck-and-roll pleather matching the exterior color, that looks old, is on the bench seating in the dining area. The floor is also made of black-and-white vinyl.

2015-shasta-airflyte-16-reissue-travel-trailer-bed

This new travel trailer boasts tons of storage throughout with sleek finishes! The Shasta weights roughly 2,270 pounds, making it easily tow-able behind most SUVs, sedans, and mini vans. So, enjoy the finer things in life with this 2015 Shasta AirFlyte 16.

2015-shasta-airflyte-16-reissue-travel-trailer-bathroom

Interior Features:

  • Concealed Radio Controls w/ Aux Input
  • Hidden Bluetooth stereo
  • Dinette w/ two tone, tuck-and-roll pleather wi silver welt
  • Dinette makes 54″ x 76″ front bed
  • Rear bench makes 39” x 56″ bed
  • “Dogbone” pattern Formica counter tops trimmed with aluminum edging
  • Bathroom with toilet and shower where the original closet would be
  • Birch wood cabinet doors and other interior features
  • “Scalloped” cabinet doors with retro “Chevron” handles
  • Shasta Logo Magazine Rack
  • Black and White checkerboard vinyl flooring
  • Interior color scheme to match exterior
  • All Interior Lights are LED
  • Original Gas Lamp reproduced to look like 1961 gas lamp is LED
  • Throwback Hehr Jalouise Windows
  • Draperies
  • 3 Burner Cooktop
  • 3 Way ReferSS Micro Oven
  • 3-Wat Refrigerator with Freezer

2015-shasta-airflyte-16-reissue-travel-trailer-exteriorr

Exterior Features:

  • Hidden flip-down stabilizer jacks
  • Hidden outside speakers
  • LED exterior lights made like ’61 retro style
  • 24″ wide entry door (original 22″)
  • Friction hinge door
  • LED Lighted Door Handle
  • Hidden air condition
  • Jalousie windows true to original (except back
  • Same 3 Original Colors fire escape window)
  • Wings are to Exact Original Dimensions
  • Same 3 Original Colors to choose from:
    Seafoam Green
    Buttercup Yellow
    Matador Red (color from GM in 1961)
  • Wide Sidewall Radial Tires
  • Rope and Pole Awning
  • 30 AMP Service
  • Original Log Style Aluminum Sliding

SPECS for 2015 Shasta Airflyte 16 Reissue Travel Trailer:

Measurements
Exterior Length16′ 3.75″
Exterior Width7′ 0″
Exterior Height96″
Interior Height (with A/C)6′ 4″
Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (lbs)2,470
Tank Capacities
Fresh Water Capacity (gals) 25
Gray Waste Water Capacity (gals) 18
Black Waste Water Capacity (gals) 11
Water Heater (gals) Gas/Electric 6
A/C (BTU) 5,000

 

2015-shasta-airflyte-16-reissue-travel-trailer-floorplan

1961 Shasta Airflyte Reissued in 2015 Club https://www.facebook.com/groups/1961ShastaAirflyteReissuedin2015

The Vintage Shasta Trailer Forum: http://vintageshasta.proboards.com/

Vintage Shasta specifications

http://autos.groups.yahoo.com/group/Classicshastas/ Classic Shasta Trailer Discussion group. Get your manuals, ads, etc., here.

http://autos.groups.yahoo.com/group/VintageShastaClub/ VintageShastaClub on Yahoo

http://www.freewebs.com/kc8jwa/classicshastas.htm Shasta History, Wings and Paint information, etc.

http://www.freewebs.com/kc8jwa/shastacompact.htm Shasta Compact site

http://www.shastaloflyte.com Shasta LoFlyte Dedicated Info Repository

NC RV Solutions – Shasta restoration project

http://www.engine-decals.com For vintage style Shasta decals, has many colors to choose from.

Videos

Vintage Shasta Trailer Pictures

Of the hundreds of different brands of “canned ham” style travel trailers manufactured during the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s, the classic Shasta Trailer is certainly one of the best known. The polished “Shasta Wings” jutting off the rear are widely recognized, and are usually the first feature that comes to mind when someone mentions that their family had a Shasta Trailer. This well known company was established in 1942 and these rounded beauties were built on Keswick Ave in Van Nuys California then later Northridge California, with another facility in Goshen Indiana. The predecessor to the Shasta, the “Cozy Cruiser”, began rolling out of the factory in 1951, with the classic “canned ham” shape. Early Shastas retained this rounded side profile through model year 1957. The beloved “Shasta Wings” first appeared on the 1958 models, when the original rounded canned-ham shape was altered with the top frontal area now leaning slightly forward and then angling back inwards toward the bottom. The popular Shasta trailer came with warm natural wood interior paneling and cabinets of Birch or Ash. The kitchen counter and dining table were covered with color-coordinated laminate which was also used for the simple sliding doors on the wood cabinets over the dining table. The single 110v ac outlet was barely adequate but the butane powered wall lamps cast a warm and cozy light against the golden hue of the interior woodwork (see some great Shasta Interiors here). The classic Shasta canned-ham shape was changed to a more squared-off style, front and back, beginning with the 1965 models, but the much-loved Shasta Wings continued intact into the mid 1980’s. Whether it’s the Cozy Cruiser model from the early 1950’s, or the Compact, 16-SC, 16-SCS, 16-RK, Astrodome, Starflyte, Airflyte, 1400, 1500, 1900 or more modern Loflyte and Stratoflyte models, Shasta travel trailers remain one of the most popular family trailers on the road today.
Click Image to Enlarge it
Freshly Restored 1956 Shasta Travel Trailer
1956 Shasta Trailer, Mint Green and White
1956 Shasta Canned-Ham Trailer
1956 Shasta Trailer, Great Paint With Silver Stripe
Classic 1956 Shasta Trailer, Ready For Camping
1956 Shasta Trailer, Freshly Restored
Beautiful 1956 Shasta Travel Trailer
1956 Shasta Trailer, Ready For Camping
Custom Flowers Mural Hand-Painted on a 1954 Vintage Shasta Trailer
1956 Shasta Trailer, Custom Painted Propane Tanks
1959 Shasta Trailer Compact Model
1959 Shasta Trailer, Compact Model With Wings
Vintage 1959 Shasta Trailer, 2 tone Blue and White Paint
1959 Shasta Compact Trailer, With Front Jalousie Window
Popular 1959 Shasta Compact Trailer Travel Trailer
1959 Shasta Compact Trailer, Very Clean Restoration
1954 Shasta 1400 Trailer in original yellow and white paint scheme
1954 Shasta 1400 Trailer, painted yellow and white
Early 1954 Shasta 1400 Trailer, one of the first Shastas after the Cozy Cruiser models
1954 Shasta 1400 Trailer, first “Shasta” year
Rare 1954 Shasta 1400 Trailer in mostly unrestored original condition
1954 Shasta 1400 Trailer, rare canned ham
Picture of a 1954 Shasta 1400 vintage Travel Trailer, showing child's cot over the fold-out bed
1954 Shasta 1400 Trailer, child’s cot over bed
Rare all wood vintage dining table in a 1954 Shasta 1400 Travel Trailer
1954 Shasta 1400 Trailer, original dining table
Early 1954 Shasta 1400 Travel Trailer with original gas stove and birch kitchen cabinets
1954 Shasta 1400 Trailer, vintage gas stove
Original 120v light fixture and stitched lamp shade in a vintage 1954 Shasta 1400 Travel Trailer
1954 Shasta 1400 Trailer, vintage 120v light fixture
Shellac finish and vintage cabinet latch on original birch kitchen cabinets in a 1954 Shasta 1400 Travel Trailer
1954 Shasta 1400 Trailer, birch door & original latch
Photo shows original chrome cabinet hinges on a kitchen cabinet door in a 1954 Shasta 1400 Travel Trailer
1954 Shasta 1400 Trailer, birch door & original hinges
Photo of rare original heat in ceiling of 1954 Shasta 1400 Trailer, over the original propane wall lamp
1954 Shasta 1400 Trailer, orig gas lamp heat shield
Sharp 1956 Shasta 1400 Trailer painted bright blue and white
1956 Shasta 1400 Trailer, blue and white
Birch wood cabinets and paneling in 1956 Shasta 1400 Travel Trailer
1956 Shasta 1400 Trailer, birch cabinetry
Picture of dining area in 1956 Shasta 1400 Travel Trailer
1956 Shasta 1400 Trailer, dining area
Photo shows bedroom and ceiling hammock in 1956 Shasta 1400 Travel Trailer
1956 Shasta 1400 Trailer, bedroom area with hammock
Birch kitchen cabinets and stovck ceiling lamp fixture in 1956 Shasta 1400 Trailer
1956 Shasta 1400 Trailer, kitchen cabinets
Bright 1956 Shasta 1400 Vintage Trailer ready for camping
1956 Shasta 1400 Trailer, ready for camping
1964 Shasta Trailer being towed by a 1955 Chevy Nomad Station Wagon
1964 Shasta Trailer and 1955 Chevy Nomad Wagon
1964 Shasta Trailer with red and creme white paint color scheme
1964 Shasta Trailer, painted red and creme-white
Vintage 1956 Shasta 1400 Trailer painted Necco wafer orange
1956 Shasta 1400 Trailer, painted Necco wafer orange
Stunning Early Shasta Trailer paint bright yellow and white
Early Shasta Trailer, painted bright yellow & white
Sharp vintage Shasta Travel Trailer painted bright yellow and white
Beautiful yellow and white early Shasta Trailer
Photo of beautifully restored 1961 Shasta Astrodome Trailer
1961 Shasta Astrodome Trailer, beautiful restoration
Vintage 1961 Shasta Astrodome Trailer painted light blue and white colors
1961 Shasta Astrodome trailer, painted light blue & white
Rare 1961 Shasta Astrodome Trailer with Honda 90 Trail bike mounted on rear custom rack
1961 Shasta Astrodome Trailer & Honda-90 Trail Bike
Custom Flowers Mural Hand-Painted on a 1954 Vintage Shasta Trailer
1954 Shasta Trailer, Hand Painted Flowers and Shutters
Early 1955 Shasta Canned-Ham Trailer
1955 Shasta Trailer Camping at Refugio Beach, Calif.
Vintage 1955 Shasta Trailer, with yellow Kitchen Laminate
1955 Shasta Trailer Ice Box and Oven in Kitchen Area
Classic 1955 Shasta Trailer showing original entryway cabinet
1955 Shasta Trailer Original Corner Closet Cabinet
Vintage 1955 Shasta Travel trailer with Cabinet Over Kitchen Counter
1955 Shasta Trailer Kitchen Cupboard
Gas stove & oven unit in 1955 Shasta travel trailer
1955 Shasta Trailer Vintage Princess Gas Oven & Stove
Custom made birch screen door in vintage 1955 Shasta trailer
1955 Shasta Trailer New Wood Screen Door!
Classic Shasta magazine rack still hanging in 1955 Shasta Trailer
1955 Shasta Trailer Dining Area – Original Magazine Rack
Newly painted 1955 Shasta Trailer and restored Dodge Pickup Truck
1955 Shasta Trailer and
Vintage 1960 Dodge Pickup
Beautifully restored Vintage Shasta 1400 travel trailer in pastel orange
1956 Shasta 1400 Trailer
With Awning
Welcoming Dining area in 1956 Shasta model 1400 trailer
1956 Shasta 1400 Trailer
Dining Area
1956 Shasta trailer bedroom area at the end of the kitchen counter
1956 Shasta 1400 Trailer
Bedroom Area
Very sharp 1956 Shasta 14ft trailer at Pismo Beach Trailer Rally
1956 Shasta 1400 Trailer
at Pismo Rally
Blue and White vintage 1956 Shasta canned-ham trailer
1956 Shasta Trailer
painted blue and white
Very sharp 1956 Shasta Travel Trailer with vintage wide whitewall tires
1956 Shasta Trailer
Camping at Pismo
Gaucho bed setup as a couch in a 1960 Shasta Airflyte vintage trailer
1960 Shasta Airflyte
Gaucho bed folded up
Restored 1960 vintage Shasta Airflyte trailer has a beautiful orange and white paint job
1960 Shasta Airflyte
looks great in orange!
Full sized bed in vintage 1956 Shasta travel trailer
1956 Shasta Trailer,
Cozy Bedroom
Very nicely restored red and white 1956 vintage shasta trailer
1956 Shasta Trailer
Beach Camping
Old 1956 Shasta trailer nicely restored in 2 tone red and white paint scheme
1956 Shasta Trailer
at Pismo Rally
Very clean classic 1957 Shasta travel trailer in yellow and white
1957 Shasta Trailer Lemon Yellow With Awning
Great restoration of a classic 1957 Shasta trailer with red and white paint
1957 Shasta Trailer in Red and White
Sharp 1958 Shasta Airflyte vintage canned-ham trailer
1958 Shasta Airflyte Trailer in Blue and White
1958 Shasta Airflyte travel trailer with classic Shasta wings
1958 Shasta Airflyte Trailer With Side Canopy
1961 Shasta travel trailer at Mount Baker Rally in Lynden, Washington
1961 Shasta Trailer at Mt. Baker Trailer Rally
Classic 1962 Shasta 1500 travel trailer
1962 Shasta 1500 Trailer in Turquoise & White
Vintage wood magazines rack mounted in 1962 Shasta model 1500 trailer
1962 Shasta 1500 Trailer Vintage Magazine Rack
1962 Shasta 1500 trailer dining area, new bench seats and curtains
1962 Shasta 1500 Trailer Dining Room Area
Original Gas Lamp Fixture in 1962 Shasta 1500 Vintage Trailer
1962 Shasta 1500 Trailer Vintage Gas Lamp
Cool Art Deco Light fixture in 1962 Shasta trailer kitchen area
1962 Shasta 1500 Trailer Original Art Deco Lamp
Vintage Holday Gas Stove/Oven Unit in 1962 Shasta 1500 trailer
1962 Shasta 1500 Trailer Vintage Holiday Gas Stove
Classic 1962 Shasta Travel Trailer Showing Shasta Logo and Dining Windows
1962 Shasta 1500 Trailer Front View
Beautiful Reproduction of Shasta Logo Decal on 1962 Shasta Travel Trailer
1962 Shasta 1500 Trailer Repro Shasta Decal
Cool Sunbrella Striped Awning on Dining Window of 1962 Shasta Trailer
1962 shasta 1500 Trailer at Pismo Beach
Vintage 1962 Shasta Trailer on party night, with lantern lights and awning
1962 Shasta Trailer at Night – Party Time!
Classic 1962 Shasta Airflyte Travel Trailer With Striped Side and Window Awnings
1962 Shasta Trailer With Window Awning
Vintage 1962 Shasta Travel Trailer Painted Creamy Pastel Yellow
1962 shasta Trailer Pastel Yellow and White
Inviting Dining Table and Seats in Classic 1962 Shasta Trailer
1962 Shasta Trailer Dining Room Area
Rear End Shot of 2-tone Yellow and White 1962 Shasta Trailer Coach
1962 Shasta Trailer Rear Shot, Nice Wings
Striped Bedspread in 1962 Shasta Travel Trailer Restored Bedroom Area
1962 Shasta Trailer Bedroom Area
Original Holiday Propane Oven/Stove in 1962 Vintage Shasta Trailer
1962 Shasta Trailer Kitchen Cabinets & Oven
1962 Shasta Trailer Coach With Retro Chrome Rear Tail-Light Visors!
1962 Shasta Trailer, Very Cool Tail Light Visors
1962 Shasta Trailer With Trademark Aluminum Shasta Wings on Backside
1962 Shasta Trailer wings Close up
Paint Removed From 1962 Vintage Shasta Airflyte Trailer: Huntington BeachCruisers Meet
1962 shasta Trailer Polished, at Huntington Beach, Calif.
Vintage 1963 Shasta 16-SCS Trailer Coach
1963 Shasta 16SCS Trailer Light Blue & White
Unique 1963 Shasta Back-Entry Travel Trailer in Salmon Pink and White
1963 Shasta Back Entry Trailer in Salmon Pink
Kitch Counter Across Rear of Vintage 1963 Shasta Back Entry Trailer
1963 Shasta Back-Entry Trailer Kitchen Area
Sleeping Area Above Dining Table in 1963 Shasta Back Entry Trailer
1963 Shasta BackEntry Trailer, Dining Area With Bed Above
Front Shot of Rare Vintage 1963 Shasta Back Entry Trailer
1963 Shasta Back Entry Trailer, Rare and Beautiful
Fully Restored 1963 Shasta Compact Trailer
1963 Shasta Compact Trailer in Turquoise and White
Turquoise & White 1963 Shasta Compact Trailer With Wonderful Ribbed Wings
1963 Shasta Compact Trailer With Great Wings
Restored Dining Area in Vintage Shasta Travel Trailer
Vintage Shasta Trailer Dining Table With Period Accessories
Sharp 1962 Shasta Trailer, Compact Model
1962 Shasta Compact Trailer, Great Shasta Wings!
1962 Shasta Compact Trailer, Wood Cabinets in Kitchen Area
1962 Shasta Compact Trailer, Oven and Fridge
1962 Shasta Compact Trailer Interior Detail Showing Dining Table
1962 Shasta Compact Trailer, Dining Area
1962 Shasta Compact Trailer, Green and White With Red Polka Dot Awning!
1962 Shasta Trailer, Compact Model in Green and White
Refinished Wood Cabinets in 1962 Shasta Compact Trailer Dining Area
1962 Shasta Compact Trailer, Wood Paneling and Cabinets
Original 1968 Shasta Loflyre Travel Trailer
1968 Shasta Trailer, Loflyte Model With Wings
1968 Shasta Loflyte Trailer in Great Unrestored Condition
1968 Shasta Loflyte Trailer, Large Dining Area
1968 Shasta Loflyte Trailer With Original Whitewashed Cabinets and Woodwork
1968 Shasta Loflyte Trailer, Spacious Kitchen Area
Bright and fresh 1969 Shasta Starflyte Trailer in yellow and white paint scheme
1969 Shasta Starflyte Trailer, painted yellow and white
1969 Shasta Starflyte Travel Trailer with beautiful pink and white decorations in dining area
1969 Shasta Starflyte Trailer, decorated dining area
Photo of stylish decorations and accessories in 1969 Shasta Starflyte Trailer bedroom area
1969 Shasta Starflyte Trailer, stylish sleeping area

Golden Falcon

Golden Falcon

History

Skyline produced a Golden Falcon from the late 60s into the early 70s in Elkhart, Indiana

Glendale also made a Golden Falcon in the 1970s – 1990s

Company History:

Skyline Corporation designs and produces manufactured housing and recreational vehicles (RVs). Approximately 80 percent of the company’s total sales are derived from manufactured homes, which are sold under several different trade names. Skyline makes two basic types of manufactured housing: single-section mobile homes and multi-section homes. Single-section homes, which range from 36 to 80 feet in length and 12 to 18 feet in width, are often located in designated mobile home parks. Because their size makes them easy to move from place to place, they are considered “mobile homes.” Skyline’s multi-section homes, however, are larger and more closely resemble site-built homes. Buyers typically place these homes on traditional lots, and rarely, if ever, move them. Almost 70 percent of the homes produced by Skyline are multi-sections. The company’s recreational vehicle segment manufactures three types of towable RVs–conventional travel trailers, fifth-wheel trailers, and park models, as well as a line of slide-in truck campers. They are sold under the “Nomad,” “Layton,” “Aljo,” and “WeekEnder” trademarks. Skyline operates 25 manufacturing plants in 12 states and distributes its products through a national network of manufactured housing and RV dealers.

1950s: A New Spoke in an Industry Hub

Skyline Coach, the predecessor to Skyline Corporation, was established in 1951 in Elkhart, Indiana. Its founder, Julius Decio, started the business to produce mobile homes, which were commonly called “house trailers” at the time. The business Decio chose was by no means an uncommon one for Elkhart and its surrounding communities. For 20 years, the city–located in northern central Indiana, just a few miles from the Michigan border–had been a major hub for the mobile home industry. The area’s mobile home business had begun in 1933, when a local merchant decided to try replicating a contraption he had seen at the Chicago World’s Fair that looked like a tent on wheels. Setting up shop in Elkhart, he began building “house trailers,” which resembled rudimentary recreational travel trailers. The trailers’ affordability and mobility made them a good option during the Great Depression, when many families traveled across country looking for jobs and a better life.

The success of this first mobile home manufacturer led others to start similar businesses, and gradually the region became a major source of house trailers. During the Dust Bowl of 1937 and 1938, people began using house trailers not just to travel in, but as actual homes. In response, manufacturers modified their products to make them more closely correspond to traditional homes, increasing the size of the units and adding more amenities. By the end of World War II, mobile homes had evolved into something much different from their travel-trailer predecessors. Larger and more elaborate in design, they were no longer meant to be towed, camper-style, across the country by families on the move. Rather, they had become an alternative and more affordable type of house, typically stationed in one place. There were, however, a number of manufacturers still producing the early smaller trailers, primarily for use as recreational vehicles. After the war, these manufacturers essentially split off from the mobile home industry to form the RV industry.

It was into this newly bifurcated industry that Julius Decio entered when he began building house trailers in a friend’s “welding garage.” His early efforts met with success, and the business was profitable from its first year in operation. In 1952, Decio’s 22-year-old son, Art, returned to Elkhart from Chicago, where he had just graduated college. Art quickly took an active role in his father’s business, working as a division manager in the plant and helping to build the fledgling company. In 1956, he became Skyline’s CEO.

The company expanded geographically under Art Decio’s capable leadership, targeting emerging mobile housing markets in retiree states, such as Florida. Another important facet of the new CEO’s administration was a movement toward near-total reliance on third-party suppliers for materials. Whereas many mobile home manufacturers at that time produced some of their own cabinets and building supplies, Art Decio preferred to order virtually everything from outside sources. By having suppliers deliver inventory on a “just in time” basis, Skyline was able to minimize the need for warehouse space, reduce waste, and better control inventory.

1960s: Diversification and Acquisition

Decio kicked off the 1960s by taking Skyline public. At the time of its initial public offering, the company boasted an impressive string of profitable years and no corporate debt. Skyline’s second milestone of 1960 was to diversify its business by opening a travel trailer and RV plant in Elkhart. This reunion of the mobile home and RV industries made sense on several levels for the company. Since the industry split in the early 1950s, both the RV and housing segments had remained well represented in northern Indiana. Dozens of RV manufacturers–and the second- and third-tier suppliers supporting them–had production facilities in the region. In addition, many of the materials required to produce mobile homes corresponded with the materials needed to produce RVs. Therefore, Skyline’s addition of an RV division allowed for certain inventory and cost efficiencies.

Skyline also used the proceeds from its 1960 IPO to expand its mobile home business via acquisition. In 1962, the company acquired Homette Corporation and Layton Homes Corporation. The following year, Skyline bought Buddy Mobile Homes, and in 1966, added Academy Mobile Homes to its growing portfolio. The company also changed its name from Skyline Coach to Skyline Corporation.

Mid-1970s: Market Downturn

During the 1960s and early 1970s, low interest rates and a generally stable economy had combined to keep the manufactured housing business in high gear. According to the Manufactured Housing Institute, the industry hit an all-time high in 1972, reporting shipments of more than half a million units. In 1973 and 1974, however, interest rates began to climb, and housing sales began to plunge. Shipments of manufactured homes declined by 42 percent in 1974 and another 35 percent in 1975. The RV industry, likewise, fell on hard times in the 1970s. The OPEC oil embargo of 1973 and the resulting hike in gas prices put the brakes on recreational driving. This, combined with the rising interest rates, caused RV sales to fall off.

Already contending with bleak market conditions, Skyline and other producers of manufactured housing were confronted with still another hurdle in 1976. Concerned about mobile homes’ safety, Congress enacted legislation that set stricter standards for their construction. Officially changing the product’s name to “manufactured housing,” the government required all mobile homes to meet stringent manufacturing, fire, electricity, and safety codes. The tougher requirements–and the costs associated with compliance–spurred a wave of closings and consolidations in the manufactured housing industry. Despite the odds against it, Skyline managed to remain solvent and successful throughout the industry slump, never once posting an annual loss. In 1978, the company expanded again, purchasing Country Vans Conversion.

1980–98: Market Swings

The market for RVs improved in the early years of the new decade; between 1980 and 1984, the number of vehicles shipped increased by more than 80 percent. The market for manufactured housing was slower to rebound, however, with sales remaining at levels much lower than they were in the early 1970s. Skyline continued to show improved earnings and remained debt-free–but to do so, it had to trim costs and streamline operations. In 1983, the company had 28 operational and six idle manufactured housing plants. Just four years later, cost-cutting measures had reduced that number to 23 operational and two idle plants. Skyline also hedged against further economic downturns by amassing cash reserves. In 1987, one-fourth of the company’s pretax income came from interest.

The 1990s ushered in better interest rates than consumers had seen in more than a decade, and sales of manufactured housing picked up immediately. Although Skyline’s sales also improved, the company was unable to keep pace with its competitors and consequently surrendered part of its market share. Management attributed the market share loss to a lack of capacity in areas where the manufactured housing markets were expanding fastest. In an April 1996 interview with Investor’s Business Daily, Decio cited Georgia and Texas as two such rapid-growth markets, pointing out that Skyline did not have a strong manufacturing presence in either state. “Even though we’re a national company, at certain times we can’t keep up,” he said.

To bolster output and remedy the situation, Skyline initiated an aggressive expansion plan. In 1994, the company upgraded its manufactured housing plant in Sugarcreek, Ohio, and its RV plant in McMinnville, Oregon. The following year, Skyline laid out another $10 million to renovate four more facilities–in Indiana, Pennsylvania, Florida, and Louisiana. In addition to boosting production, the upgrades were designed to allow all facilities to manufacture a wider range of products. The expansion program paid off; between 1992 and 1995, net income improved by more than 50 percent.

In 1997, Skyline’s sales of manufactured housing fell slightly, and the resulting dip in total sales broke the company’s five-year record of modest but steady annual increases. A major reason for the decline was an exceptionally harsh winter, which slowed housing sales in some parts of the United States. Another factor was a general softening in the demand for manufactured housing nationwide, which led many of Skyline’s dealers to reduce their inventories. The company’s RV division had a better year, however. RV sales increased by more than 14 percent over 1996 sales, reversing the previous year’s RV industry slump.

The year 1998 saw a flip-flop in the fortunes of Skyline’s two business segments. The market for manufactured housing improved in the second half of the year, driving up Skyline’s housing sales. In addition to the overall market improvement, the housing segment benefited from a stronger demand for multi-section homes, which commanded higher prices than single-section homes. On the other hand, Skyline’s recreational vehicle sales decreased in 1998, despite the fact that, industry wide, demand for the vehicles increased.

1999 and the New Century

Skyline appeared to have both its business segments on track in 1999. The market for manufactured housing remained relatively steady through the first half of the year. More significantly, consumer demand for multi-section homes continued to grow, pushing the company’s housing dollars up despite a slight decrease in actual units sold. As its quality continued to improve, manufactured housing was expected to become an attractive option for a wider range of homeowners.

Skyline’s RV business also appeared to be on the upswing as 1999 progressed, showing gains both in units sold and in sales income. This increase was due in large part to overall favorable economic conditions and increased discretionary income, which allowed consumers to spend more for recreational products and activities.

Since its inception in the 1950s, Skyline had been more of a tortoise than a hare, taking few risks and growing slowly and sure-footedly. As the company prepared to leave the 20th century behind, it showed no signs of altering that approach. Because demand in both of Skyline’s major markets was so closely tied to economic cycles, it was impossible to predict how the company might fare in the future. So long as the general economy remained strong, however, it seemed likely that Skyline would thrive.

Pictures

1971 Golden Falcon

1968 Golden Falcon 17 1/2 foot Low Line Series
1963 Glendale Golden Falcon Length: 18 feet-ft

Go-Tag-a-long

Go Tag-a-Long

Manufacturer Information

Built in Washingtonville, Ohio, south of Youngstown, Ohio. Years built mid 1960’s thru mid 1980’s Model sizes ranged between 14′ thru 22′

Interiors

Stove, oven, sink, fridge,ice box,toilet, small holding tank above floor boxed in under toilet, gas furnace, gas lantern above stove (made by Humphrey in Kalamazoo, Michigan) a/c electric hookup, and a pressurized fresh water tank under the front bench seat

Rear Bench seat pulls out to bed. Above is a cabinet that the front face is hinged and folds down into a bunk.

Front has 2 bench seats with table in middle which turns into a bed with a storage cabinet above going across the width of the trailer.

Toilet closet, clothing closet, built in drawers.

Ceiling roof vent with hand crank, along with hand crank windows.

linoleum flooring.

1/8 inch ceiling panel covered with vinyl

Standard Features

table, sink, stove, oven, toilet

Unique features/Options

toilet is mirror china created by Mansfield Sanitary, Inc of Perrysville, Ohio. Traveler brand model 906 or 908

undercarriage has a protective layer of material over the wood subfloor

two propane bottles mounted on tongue

aluminum exterior side skin panels with galvanized steel roof

a/c electrical hookup

above floor blackwater tank mounted under toilet and boxed in.

Prices

$200.00 through $3,000.00 dependant on condition, model, and features

Pictures

Go Tag Along Vintage Camper

In September 2015, Sondra Phillips bought a 1960 Go Tag Along camper to renovate. She looked forward to the challenge of designing a functional and fun “small space”. http://www.skpdesign.com/go-tag-along-camper

The interior color palette was Inspired by the camper’s exterior yellow stripe and Sondra’s own collection of Massimo Vignelli Hellerware melamine plates. Colorful curtains in a fun whimsical pattern and Marimekko accessories from Target tie everything together. Cushions for the dinette and bunk areas were upholstered in vinyl for cleanability. Instead of new cabinets, she used Crate and Barrel wire bins above the kitchen counter to display the dishes as accent color in the camper. The 5′ wide kitchen includes all the necessities – cook top, refrigerator, sink, microwave and a tiny bit of storage. The counter and table top are 100th Anniversary Formica laminate. Flooring is sheet vinyl from Mannington called Filigree. The new outdoor canopy from Vintage Trailer Supply creates an outdoor room and extends the living space.

Project Year: 2016
Country: United States
Zip Code: 49009

Some owners

Rob and Ellen – Effort PA 1833 Krista Ainsworth – Vermont Tammy and Kevin – Goodrich,Ohio JR and Cynthia Rudzis – Owings, MD David and Brenda Bailey-Beaver, PA Jaime and Pavol Plecenik, Fort Lauderdale, FL Dave & Nanette Clarence NY Michele Fleming – Otter Lake, MI 48464

Clubs

https://www.facebook.com/GoTagALongVintageCamper/

 

Glendale Mobile Homes

Glendale Mobile Homes

Manufacturer Information

Glendale Mobile Homes Ltd, now Glendale Recreational Vehicles of Strathroy, Ontario, made it’s first “RV” in 1950. They now claim to be the largest RV manufacturer in Canada, and that more Glendale’s are sold in Canada than any other RV. They estimate that 120,000 Glendale RVs are currently in use in North America. Unfortunately Glendale has lost touch with it’s historic past through the tragedy of a large scale factory fire in the 70’s, losing all records, and thus is unable to assist with enquiries about vintage models.


**From an interview with the Founder of Glendale, October 1986 in Strathroy, Ontario:**

Glendale was founded in 1950 by Reginald Lever Thorn a trailer builder from England who arrived in Canada around 1948. Reg with his wife Joan and their first child (son , Jeremy) and friend Vic Gray travelled to various areas of Canada including BC and the East Coast. After much deliberation they settled for an area in Southwestern Ontario. The first plant was located on the Glendale Curve in London, Ont. Today the area would be know as Wharncliffe Road and Southdale. This first plant which was a barn burnt down in 1956. From here Reg relocated Glendale to it’s present day location of 145 Queen St in Strathroy. Reg with the help of many dedicated employees like Wally Callaghan grew Glendale to a be national manufacturer of both RV’s and Mobile Homes right across Canada:

-1959 Glendale Mobile Homes Ltd opened a division in Wetaskiwin Alberta producing both homes and travel trailers. -1961 Glendale Atlantic Ltd was opened in Sussex New Brunswick by John De Winter and Reg Thorn. -1961 Glendale acquires the McGuiness Homes name and begins building the Golden Falcon line of trailers -1965 Glendale Quebec Limited opened a plant in St. Joseph De Beauce producing homes and travel trailers -1966 Strathroy plant destroyed by fire and rebuilt to what is today the current facility @ 145 Queen St. -1968 Glendale expanded once again out west with a plant in Morris Manitoba and started it’s Terrapin Commercial Building Plant across the road from the Strathroy Plant on Queen St. -1969 Glendale acquires property in Australia and began Glendale Homes Pty. Ltd which is still in operation today but not affiliated with Glendale in Canada -1971 Glendale acquires Pre-Built Ltd of Lethbridge Alberta and with this the Scamper line of Recreational Vehicles -1973 Glendale Mobile Homes Ltd. becomes The Glendale Corporation with manufacturing locations across Canada for both manufactured housing and recreational vehicles of various sizes and shapes. -1975 Reg Thorn sells Glendale to Morgan Firestone of Oakville Ontario. Between 1975 and 1978 Morgan re-engineers Glendale into a streamlined company focusing only on the RV business and only from the Strathroy Complex. All other business units were sold off and or closed due to discontinuing of less profitable operations.

Prepared by Lou Hammill from an interview with Reg Thorn at his home in Strathroy, Ontario 1986 for a project presented at Sheridan College, Brampton 1987.

Years built

1950 to 2010.

1950-1975 units were built by Reg Thorn’s Glendale Mobile Homes Ltd. In 1973 Glendale underwent some major changes of growth and expansion and was re-named Glendale Corporation as the had evolved to much more then just producing mobile homes.

In 1975 Glendale was sold to Morgan Firestone of Oakville Ontario. Firan Corp of Oakville amalgamated with Glendale in 1978 creating a new company called the Firan-Glendale Corporation. Between 1978 to earlier 2000’s Glendale’s parent changed it’s name a number of times. Today Glendale RV is owned by Glendale International Limited based still in Oakville Ontario.

In 2003 Morgan Firestone sold his controlling interest of Glendale to his senior management team. Operations of Glendale International Ltd continued until the voluntary bankruptcy in Jan 2010.

Jan. 2010 Glendale Trailers files for bankruptcy http://www.rvbusiness.com/2010/01/canadian-rv-builder-glendale-files-bankruptcy/

Models

Known thus far..

1962 Glendette 14′

I have just demolished a 1964 Glendette travel trailer for parts. It must have been a delux model, it had a fold out shower room a water heater, and all matching robins egg blue appliances. The serial # is 1494 and it was built in Wetaskawin Alberta.

1965 glendette 14ft

1965 glendette 16ft

1965 Golden Falcon – 17ft

1968 Orbit ~11.5 ft coach, hard top camper. ~750lbs dry.

1969 Glendette ~ 12 ft.

1971 Flyte ~10ft coach, 14ft o/a hard top camper ~1545lbs dry.

1972 Flyte 17ft Travel Trailer 2800lbs

1973 Glendale (20′ or 23′ – Model 230 Flyte) – Gross vehicle weight of 4000Ibs.

1974 Golden Falcon (Flyte) 20′

Many Others? (Add those you know of)

1984 Glendette 24′

1986 Glenelle 14′ travel model 1100lbs?

Glendale has produced the following brands over the years since it’s inception back in 1950. The following are the branded names used: Glendale, Glendette, Glenelle, Golden Falcon, Flyte, Orbit, Falcon, Falcon Flyte, Glendette Deluxe, Golden Falcon Deluxe, Cottager, Standard, Limited Edition, Tour Edition, Presidential Series, Fireside, Scamper, Lightweight, Royal Classic, Sterling Series, Travelaire, Holidaire, Rustler, Park Avenue, Titanium, Easy Rider by Golden Falcon.

Interiors

1968 Orbit, front dinette, mid kitchen, closet, rear gaucho and bunk, birch effect panelling, avocado appliances (3 burners and fridge) cushions in dark reddish pattern.

1969 Glendette, front dinette converts to double bed, rear gaucho (with evidence of hammock), kitchen opposite door consists of sink and 3 burner (harvest gold color) stove, closet (to left of door), cushions in orange/brown fabric, no toilet or furnace, water tank located under bench seat to right of door.

1971 Flyte, rear dinette, front kitchen and bathroom, single bunk over fold down double dinette. Furnace, water heater shower, toilet.

1972 Flyte, front dinette converts to double bed, L shaped couch in rear left corner converts to double bed, unfolding double bunk overhead, closet toilet (hand pump from holding tank) in rear right corner, kitchen opposite door consists of fridge(dual source elec/propane) unerneath 3 burner stove and sink. No water heater or furnace.

Unique features/Options

Glendale pride themselves on not being mere “assemblers” of travel trailers and RVs, but true manufacturers, with the majority of components manufactured on site. Thus allowing total control over the quality of their units. This would mean that Glendale trailers have unique features and avoid the “cookie cutter” look of some other “assemblers” units.

During the 1960’s Glendale featured unique hidden storage compartments on their Glendette and Golden Falcon models. The idea was implemented by Reg Thorn as a unique feature to their manufacturing.

Glendale began molding plastic components themselves in the early 60’s due to a plastic shortage for water and septic tanks. To this day Glendale has the ability to mold anything out of ABS through their vacuum forming machine in their Strathroy Ontario facility

Pictures

1962 Glendale logo

1966 Glendale Trailer

Glendale Emblem – They were originally Silver

RoadWarrior’s 1968 Orbit in need of some TLC…

The above trailer is NOT owned by Roadwarrior. I own it. It was owned by my Aunt and Uncle when this pic was taken. The purple splotch was from a paint sample as my uncle thought it would be funny to paint it Barney purple. We’ve since restored it. It is a 50’s model manufactured in London, Ontario prior to Glendale moving to Strathroy. Thus it is not a 1968 Orbit.

http://img404.imageshack.us/img404/378/camper002dx2.jpg

DutchGod’s 1972 Glendale Flyte (Purhased Sept. 4th, 2010 $650)

http://s673.photobucket.com/albums/vv100/dutchgod/1972%20Glendale%20Flyte/

http://pinterest.com/summercottage55/my-vintage-trailer/ This is a 12 foot ’69 Glendette…*If the message “We couldn’t find that board” comes up just disregard and click “Okay”. Scroll down to board titled “Betty – My Vintage Trailer”.

Some owners

RoadWarrior, Niagara Region, Ontario, Canada. 1968 Orbit. Catch me on the forums.

Dutchgod, Aylmer, Ontario. 1972 Glendale Flyte

1969 Glendette, Nova Scotia, summerfriends55@gmail.com http://summerfriends-beth.blogspot.ca/

sdklooster Kitchener On. owns a 1975 Glendale Orbit. http://db.tt/y3UA7xvc

Wendy Peter Winnipeg Manitoba. Owns an early 1960’s 15 ft Golden Falcon. Find me on Vintage Trailer Talk. Link to my restoration blog: http://mygoldenfalconrestoration.blogspot.ca

Glendale Recreational Vehicles www.glendalerv.com

Vintage Glendale Trailer Trailers Group on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/1474351689463504/

Giles

Giles

Manufacturer Information

First sold during the 1960s, Giles built a range of fifth wheel and travel trailers up until the 1985 model year. In the 1980s, the vacation trailer line-up of Giles was named after popular NASCAR legends including Richard Petty and David Pearson. Giles recreational products ranged in size from 14 to 32 feet.

Years built

1960?-1985

Some Owners

I have a trailer titled as a 17 ft Giles, it is 7 feet wide, it is not original,have not found any serial numbers, has aluminum sheet under floor, propane hot water heater, coleman gas light, 3burner stove with oven,front dinette, shower/toilet,

Photos

70s Giles
70s Giles

Franklin

Franklin

Franklin Coach Co. Nappanee, IN 46550 Ph. 574-773-4106

Founder: Paul Abel

Manufacturer Information

Taken from the company’s website http://www.franklincoachrv.com/

Franklin Coach Co., Inc. is one of the oldest R.V Manufacturers that has the same ownership from its inception till today. Franklin Coach Co., Inc. was founded in 1945 to build what was then called trailers by Paul Abel and a partner and since 1957 has been solely owned by Mr. Paul Abel. That makes Franklin Coach Co., Inc. one of the only R.V. manufactures that has the same continuous ownership for 60 years.

Mr. Paul Abel is one of the real pioneers of the RV industry. He was instrumental in founding an organization to bring standards to the RV industry and that organization today is called the Recreational Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA). He was president of RVIA for many years and was inducted into the Recreational Vehicle RVMH hall of fame in its second year.

While Paul Abel continues to work on design and engineering of Franklin RV’s today the company is run by 2 of his sons, Rick Abel and Steve Abel, who each have more that 30 years of RV manufacturing experience. 2006

Years built

1945-present day

19 ft caravan

Photos

1967 Franklin Trailer
1967 Franklin Trailer
1968 Franklin
1968 Franklin
1968 Vintage Franklin Trailer
1968 Vintage Franklin Trailer
Vintage, Unrestored 1965 Franklin Travel Trailer - 18ft.
Vintage, Unrestored 1965 Franklin Travel Trailer – 18ft.
Vintage 1964 Franklin Camper Trailer
Vintage 1964 Franklin Camper Trailer
1966 Franklin Vintage Camper
1966 Franklin Vintage Camper

Videos

No known clubs.

Field & Stream

Field and Stream Travel Trailer

Manufacturer Information

Vacation Industries, Inc. – Gardena California

Years built

1971 – 15′

1980 – 13′

1967 – 13’w/birch interior

1965 – 13′ with Ash Interior, front kitchen, side dinette, rear goucho and overhead bunk.

1962 -14’w/birch interior

1962 – 10′ box, birch interior, nightstand at rear that separates two twin beds, 3-burner stove and ice box.

1975 – 13′ including tongue

Interiors

1967 F&S has all wood (birch) interior

Prices

Purchased $1,800

1967- purchased for $150.

1975 – purchased for $400

Pictures/Videos