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Nailhead: like this prospect


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#1 PackRat

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Posted 06 December 2018 - 07:22 PM

https://nanaimo.crai...6763884289.html

 

I'd ask for more pics and find out if the interior cabinetry is the early solid wood or the particle-board that should probably be avoided that was used in some years. Check the corners/roof vent paneling for softness or visible staining and avoid that unless you want a "project".

 

Yes, its up near Seattle, but I was ready for a trip from Albuquerque (not much rain so not much chance of rotten wood) to LA to Seattle for the right one...I got lucky and drove about 70 miles to pickup mine!


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1988 Ford F-250 HD Lariat 4x4 8 Ft. bed

1976 Alaskan 8 Ft. CO camper


#2 DavidGraves

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Posted 07 December 2018 - 12:10 AM

Pack Rat

 

I believe that CL ad is for Nanaimo, a city up Vancouver island.

 

Just FYI

 

David Graves


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#3 Vic Harder

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Posted 07 December 2018 - 03:54 AM

I talked to the owner (Vernon).  The camper is a 1975.  No portapotti or furnace.  Water tank was removed, he has a new one, just not installed yet.  No on board battery or icebox.  No heater.  Uses a horizontal propane tank, lying in the truck bed next to the camper.

 

Had some water damage, which he claims to have repaired.  It goes up and down, seals have not been replaced.  Perrelli seals have been replaced.  

 

He has had several Alaskans.  Seems like he might like buying/selling to make a few bucks for beer money in his retirement, but otherwise I have no opinion or recommendations to make.  I have asked some friends on Vancouver Island to go have a look see. 

 

What exactly should the be looking for?


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#4 Vic Harder

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Posted 07 December 2018 - 05:05 AM

Some more pictures:

file 29
file 28
file 27
file 26
file 25
file 23
file 21

 


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#5 roverjohn

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Posted 07 December 2018 - 07:42 PM

I would look behind the tracks that guide the top when it raises and all around the floor especially near the door. The two I've looked at both were essentially gone in both those area. The tracks get water behind them, I assume the caulking dries,  and the wood rots. At that point the roof section is just sitting there because gravity holds it in place. When you lift it up the only thing keeping it lined up are the hyd struts.


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#6 PackRat

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Posted 07 December 2018 - 08:29 PM

1) Look where the top meets the front and rear panels on the inside for stained wood which screams WATER INTRUSION and probably some degree of rotten wood framing.

2) Same thing around the roof vents...staining says it has been leaking

3) Check around the window frames for staining/damage to the interior from water indicating some possible rotted wood.

4) Look at the bottom section for stains/leaks where eyebolts have been attached

5) Look at the front/rear panels where they meet the side panels to see if the aluminum trim has been distorted or is loose and if the wood in there is "soft" when you poke an awl in there if it is open

6) Look at the bottom of the camper for soft wood or loose, rotted wood.....hard to do without being able to see it up on jacks or a rolling frame off of the truck

7) Follow the plumbing system to see if anything has leaked/seeped and rotted anything. That means from the fresh tank to sink to discharge outlet

8) Try to check the electrical system. Maybe that means an extension cord and some 60-watt light bulbs or someone who understands solar/batteries/inverters (like Vic!). If it does not check out, keep looking!

 

Alaskans and other "old" (40 years old?) campers that have no paint left on the exterior and exhibit a lot of wear on the interior may be OK but if you are patient and are willing to pay a bit more, you may find one that was not beat to death and was parked in a garage or a barn to keep the sun from eating the paint and the seals. Conversely, if you are OK with buying more or less a "pig in a poke" and are ready to perform major surgery (carpentry) then you may be OK to take on a "project" camper.

 

The one in the LA CL for $2400 has been there for a few years. I see it as a major project and as such is probably more like an $800 item personally….and I was not interested in one like that....even at $800!


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1988 Ford F-250 HD Lariat 4x4 8 Ft. bed

1976 Alaskan 8 Ft. CO camper


#7 Vic Harder

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Posted 08 December 2018 - 01:45 AM

Thanks.  I'm giving this one a pass!


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#8 PackRat

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Posted 08 December 2018 - 07:07 PM

Vic....if you are seriously interested in an Alaskan, avoid the particle-board cabinetry, get one with decent paint, check to see if the doors are aligned, the top raises/lowers without binding and then...I think you'll be looking at some 1970's era Alaskans. Having said that, you would do well to avoid one with someone else's attempt at solar/battery set ups unless you can inspect and test it out since you are quite savvy about that stuff. After that, it's just down to finding one that has or hasn't an oven or something other than an ice-box and a heater.

 

I think there are many up in the Seattle area that come up for sale so you can be picky if you are looking for one anyway. I have found many on CL there and in LA because they had factories there. In Seattle, it rains on occasion so you need one stored inside. In LA it doesn't rain a lot but the sun can cook all the seals and the paint...so finding one that has been parked in a barn or some garage is the Holy Grail of Alaskan seekers....

 

Besides rotten wood, ants and yellowjackets and even termites have been found in the walls of Alaskans and they have been compared to a wooden boat; that is, if left in the water all the time, that can damage a wooden hull, but if left on lane the wood can dry out due to sun damage.

 

Offhand, I'd say a 1970s Alaskan in EXCELLENT condition or at least VERY GOOD can be found in the $3k to $5k range if one is patient and waits/pounces on a really good one! However, the further from highly populated areas, the prices go down and the odds it was kept in a garage/barn go up.

 

Good Luck


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1988 Ford F-250 HD Lariat 4x4 8 Ft. bed

1976 Alaskan 8 Ft. CO camper


#9 Vic Harder

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Posted 08 December 2018 - 07:24 PM

Thanks.  I'm not convinced an Alaskan is the way I want to go next.  And I also thought the 1975+ versions were the ones with particle board (and dark interiors)?  If I got one, I would be tempted to gut it and redo it all, but I am way more of an electrical/mechanical guy than a woodworker.  Hmmmm.


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#10 roverjohn

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 02:30 PM

Vic,

The design of the Alaskans really weakens the structure compared to just a normal slide in so if you want a 70's camper I'd look for one with the least amount of complexity. It will improve your odds of finding a decent starting point. I've never figured out why Alaskans have such a following but if you want hard sides and collapsibility there isn't much choice.

Have fun in the hunt for your next camper.

John


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