My wife and I just bought a ‘76 Ventura
and are planning to fully restore it. It’s so helpful to see all the posts on here related to this model so we’re optimistic that the answers can be found to overcome all of the challenges ahead. Also we’re located in Calgary so it’s nice to see local advice related to part sourcing etc...
As for the Ventura
, it was pulled out of a field in southern Saskatchewan where it sat for at least the last 13 years. The fridge
is no good (I think), the stove might be salvageable however there is a lot of rust to remove. I’m not yet sure the condition of the furnace
or the propane
lines but I’m hoping I won’t need to replace them.
The flooring needs to come out as with most I’ve seen on here. I’m thinking of using a hand planer rather than accidentally putting a hole through the FG with a pry bar.
The window cranks are all shot and so far the Vintage Trailer Parts website recommendation won’t work because they are sold
out of RH cranks. (I need 4 RH and 1 LH). I did see that Woody’s here in Calgary had them about 7 years ago. Fingers crossed I can find replacements at an RV store.
The water tank has a huge crack in it and I haven’t had any luck yet finding advice on a replacement.
The shell is in fairly good condition (although current state of leaking is TBD). There have been some patches over the years with what looks like resin only, but the gel coating wasn’t done over the patches. I suspect the repairs weren’t done from the interior either as it seems to be all original panelling with no evidence it was opened up. The plan is to gut to the studs, repair the FG from the interior, including the belly band and to reinforce the roof. Like the other Venturas on here, it has caved. After that, tend to the exterior and restore the finish.
The frame and welds were inspected by a welder with a positive review however there is a significant amount of rust. Not sure yet if I want to separate the shell from the frame and have the frame recoated.
Looks like I’ll need new brakes
and I’m glad to see they’re cheap to replace. I’ll have to have the axle
inspected too. Luckily it pulled well from Saskatchewan to Calgary with no issues.
The rock guard over the front window is missing. Haven’t figured out how I’ll replace it yet so I’ll have to do more research on that one.
The door is warped and leaks
, hence the damaged floor, so that is one problem that is yet to be assessed and solved.
In addition to all of this, I plan on adding solar
and associated equipment, and re-wiring the entire trailer.
Anyways we’re really excited and overwhelmed at the same time. With winter around the corner, it might stall the shell repairs due to cold. We are unable to get the trailer in the garage so all the work will have to happen outdoors.
Feel free to send me any tips or warnings that you learned through your restorations.