What's an Argosy? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-14-2006, 08:02 AM   #1
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I saw what appeared to be a 16 or 17 foot fiberglass trailer parked in a driveway. It had ARGOSY in raised letters on the front of it. Anyone ever heard of this make? It looked pretty cool.
Diane
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Old 03-14-2006, 08:15 AM   #2
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I think it may be a aluminum trailer. Argosy was an Airstream brand and are painted a white'ish cream color. Nice units.
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Old 03-14-2006, 08:19 AM   #3
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Evan,
Yes, it was a creamy whitish color. Sure looked like fiberglass to me. No dents or dings!
It had nice big windows too.
Diane
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Old 03-14-2006, 08:39 AM   #4
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I was also curious about the Argosy. The people down the street have one in their driveway also... did know if it was a fiberglass or what.... Theirs is an older one... not to bad of shape....
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Old 03-14-2006, 08:56 AM   #5
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Ah-ha! A topic about which I know something!

Argosy was the Airstream test-bed brand from about 1972 through 1988. They are, in fact, painted aluminum. Many of the features seen on today's Airstreams, including the panoramic windows were first introduced on the Argosy line to gauge consumer reaction. This wasn't unprecedented at all, GM for years used the Buick and Pontiac lines to introduce features that later became standard on Chevy. Chrysler and Ford have done the same with their various lines.

The Argosy line in the late '70s fuel crisis became the 'light weight' trailer line for Airstream, most of them weighing 1/3 less on average than the same sized silver Airstream. I had a '78 Argosy Minuet 6.0 meter (20', the smallest in the Argosy line) trailer for a short time that had all aluminium framed furniture and a composite aluminum-honeycomb floor.

Despite some claims to the contrary, you cannot remove the paint from an Argosy and have an Airstream. The Argosy line has steel one-piece endcaps which differs from the Airstream thirteen, seven, five, or three piece endcaps (depending on the vintage of the trailer). The last of the classic Airstream-shaped Argosy trailers left the assembly line in about 1979.

The Argosy line in 1986-89 morphed into a composite panel construction that was excellent in it's day for longevity and insulation, but rudely panned by Airstream affectionados as a "SquareStream". They were manufactured for a few years, including some large 5th wheels under both the Airstream (silver paint) and Argosy (white paint) brands, but eventually fell off the production line.

Roger

On edit: I also moved the thread to General Chat where it's probably more appropriate than in Care and Feeding.
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Old 03-14-2006, 08:58 AM   #6
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Here is a shot of an Argosy we saw last year at Lake Whitney State Park. They were with a group that included a new looking AirStream. I walked around the Argosy and noted that it had all the features of the AirStream.
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Argosy_4.jpg  
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Old 03-14-2006, 08:59 AM   #7
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I helped a friend sell an Argosy, they were or maybe still are made by Airsteam, Aluminum painted white, or cream. plywood flooring, Really nice units.This one was a
Manufactured in the early 70s
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Old 03-14-2006, 09:06 AM   #8
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We have an older discussion on these (although not as thorough as Roger's history lesson).

Here's the link: Argosy Trailers.

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Old 03-14-2006, 09:45 AM   #9
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I assume these Argosys' are heavy?? Anyone know the weight on them??
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Old 03-14-2006, 11:33 AM   #10
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Quote:
I assume these Argosys' are heavy?? Anyone know the weight on them??
As I recall my 6.0 meter Minuet was ballpark 2450lbs dry... the longer trailers weighed more of course... and the older Argosy 20 also weighs more than the 6.0 meter variety.

Airstream has published a weight matrix for all of their trailers back to 1951 or so... but I don't believe that the Argosys are included. I may have some other resources if you're really interested in the accurate weights (at least as portrayed in their marketing literature...).

Roger
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Old 03-14-2006, 11:37 AM   #11
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Not a one of you passed the quiz. The correct answer is:

Argosy, n: a large merchant ship; also, a fleet of such ships.

Now, for another interesting one:

Scamp, n: (from scamper, signifying originally one who decamps without paying debts) 1) a rascal; an unprincipled rogue 2) a vagabond; a fugitive from justice --- also

Scamp, vt: to perform in a hasty slipshod, careless manner.
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Old 03-14-2006, 12:50 PM   #12
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Yes Loren... and I found this for Burro:

Noun 1. burro - small donkey used as a pack animal
domestic ass, donkey, Equus asinus - domestic beast of burden descended from the African wild ass; patient but stubborn


AND, I resemble ALL of the above... what's your point?

Roger
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Old 03-15-2006, 11:13 PM   #13
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My husband and I owned a 1974 Argosy (a 24 footer) from 1975 to around 1990 or so. We loved it - it had most of the features of the Airstream, but was considerably cheaper. It had real walnut veneer on the wood, even under the beds. We used it a lot during the summers travelling out west (we lived in the Boston area) the first several years, then intermittently for the next 10 years, and then as a summer home in a leased spot in a campground on Cape Cod.

Roger is right about the endcaps - ours would chip and start rusting if we didn't keep on top of it with a fresh coat of paint each year.(That was probably thanks to our New England winters.) We didn't have any aluminum furniture - just a normal (wooden dinette), etc. It did have the aluminum frame between the inner and outer walls that the Airstreams had.

We loved it, and found it very easy to tow, but it got a bit small at the end, when we had our daughter living in it too. (Making the dinette into a bed each night got old.)

Nancy
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Old 03-16-2006, 06:38 AM   #14
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Here's some more weight info I was able to find. This info was posted by Kevin Allen on AirstreamForums.com. Kevin has one of the best collections of Argosy info available.

Quote:
The '77/'78 Minuet 6.0 meter:

Gross Vehicle Weight Rating for both years was 3,250(?) pounds. The empty weight (without factory options nor any fluids) were coach - - 2,450 pounds and hitch weight 395 pounds.

Realistically, the loaded weight of the Minuet is generally very close to the GVWR of 3,250 - - mine runs right at 3,100 pounds most of the time for extended trips - - the hitch weight when loaded runs very close to 550 pounds.

The 1973 26' Argosy:

Argosy 26 Twin:

Gross Vehicle Weight Rating: 6,200 lbs.
Empty (unladen) Weight: 3,830 lbs.
Allowable Additional Weight: 2,370 lbs.

Argosy 26 Double:

Gross Vehicle Weight Rating: 6,200 lbs.
Empty (unladen) Weight: 3,850 lbs.
Allowable Additional Weight: 2,350 lbs.


The 1978 Argosy 30 had an empty weight of 4,270 lbs (center-double) or 4,290 lbs (rear-twins/center bath). The empty hitch weight was 405 lbs (center-double) or 520 lbs (rear-twins/center bath).
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