Back in August of last year Billy & I happened across a groovy old riveted Streamline travel trailer parked in a grove of wild oaks in the Ojai Valley. Since Streamline trailers on the road are far and few between we did our due diligence and discovered a rich history beginning of all places with Curtis Wright Trailers and Airstream.
According to Vintage Airstream, "Curtis Wright, who moved to LA from Michigan before the war to start a trailer manufacturing plant, hired Wally Byam. After the war in 1946, they started production of a new post-war travel trailer based on Wally’s pre-war Airstream Clipper & Sliver Cloud models at the Van Nuys Airport (LA Metropolitan Airport). After some months they went their separate ways, forming the Airstream Co. and Curtis Wright Travel Trailers. In June 1949, three individuals, Kenny Neptune, Frank Pollito and “Pat” Patterson, who had met each other while working for Douglas Aircraft, acquired the trailer business from Mr. Curtis Wright and began producing trailers under the Silver Streak name in south El Monte California which it continued into the 1970’s as a separate company. In the 1950’s, Silver Streak partners Kenny Neptune and Frank Polido bought fellow partner “Pat” Patterson out, and Pat went off on his own to produce the “Streamline” trailer". Pat decided to use a 3-rail foundation instead of just two with a belly pan and additional support. Some say it is the best trailer ever made but like Chevy's and Fords I suppose it is a matter of preference. One thing I do know, I cannot find even one restored or remodeled 1968 Streamline Princess on the road anywhere on the planet. Now that is pretty darn cool.
So we bought her. She had good bones and the price was right but we didn't expect the mess we found upon further inspection when we got her home. Let me give you an example.... 13 dead rats were removed from being trapped between a damaged floor and the belly pan. YUCK! I personally removed multiple wasp nets from vents throughout our girl. No matter. Before we bought her we knew we would gut her and start from scratch.
We proceeded to hunt a gifted craftsman who would listen to our ideas, share his experience and wisdom and work with us to make our Princess "new" again. We are so blessed to find Marvin Dinovitz right here in Ventura CA. He is a master carpenter with a limp and a straightforward no-nonsense demeanor that rivals my own. His work is beyond meticulous and has been featured in many magazines. He currently is working on a start-up tiny house business in Lake Tahoe CA. Better still he is willing to let me work on her and learn along side of him with what he calls "sweat equity" and I am enjoying the process.
We are hoping to have her completed for a vintage trailer campout in Newport Beach late September that I am so excited about! The Princess will officially be available for booking starting October 10, 2016. In the meantime I will update the post as she progresses from neglect to become the royalty she was meant to be.