1978 Surfside - Page 5 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-09-2007, 07:38 PM   #57
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Hi: Welcome Jon My Brother painted the ensolite in his Boler using top quality Acrylic Latex Interior paint. There is a new product I found in the paint store called eT.S.P. that requires no rinceing after washing and prior to painting. Check it out??? Use a long napped roler and it works well. Removing the Ensolite seems a very big job Any seems or tears in the liner can be repaired with D.A.P. Latex caulk in white and daub it with a wet piece of paper towel to give it a stipple finish Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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Old 03-10-2007, 12:21 AM   #58
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Hello Everyone,

My husband and I just bought a 1976 Surfside last week. We have been having a blast looking out our front window and seeing it sitting in our driveway. I have also been searching the internet for information on Surfside's and this site seems to have the most info out there. I have read all the postings on this site about the Surfside's and have picked up some tips for our upcoming remodel. I was wondering if anybody has had success painting the interior ensolite. If so what type of paint did you use? What about taking the ensolite down - how would you then resurface the inside (not carpet)!

Jon
Looks WONDERFUL! Can you send us pix of the inside? Great paint-job.

Regarding the ensolite, do you just not like the color or is it damaged? Mine looked like garbage when we first got it, but when we looked at opportunities for replacing it and found them not feasible, I started cleaning (and CLEANING AND CLEANING AND CLEANING AND...). I used every solvent known to man and it actually turned out GREAT!

- Miriam
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Old 03-10-2007, 10:56 AM   #59
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Thanks for the great feedback everybody!

I will post some more pics of the inside - we have already torn it apart. It is now a "shell" of it's former self. The ensolite has the tape on all of the seams hanging off and it has stains from the windows leaking. I was unsure of what to clean it with and soapy water does not seem to do anything. After some research and some really good discussions on this site I would like to avoid replacing the ensolite and just cleaning it and fixing/removing the tape.
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Old 03-10-2007, 11:47 AM   #60
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Jon,

Thanks for the pix! Looks like a nice unit with lots of potential.

You're right about the soapy water - it's a good start but won't begin to touch the grimy areas. The sticky residue from the foam tape is a magnet for dirt, and when it peels off and people "fix it" with various glues, invariably there's stuff that slops over and gets caught in the ensolite grooves which looks bad and attracts even more dirt. The biggest hurdle for me in the cleaning was to get over the fact that I was gonna WRECK IT by putting a solvent on it. Because my ensolite was so destroyed (it had contact cement, wallpaper paste, hot glue gun, at least 2 different kinds of silicone, and a layer of spray granite paint that had to all be removed), I had nothing to lose in trying solvent after solvent. And I found out that even the strongest solvent applied with a brass scrub brush (toothbrush size) and vigourous scrubbing didn't hurt the ensolite. I started with acetone, which softened the plastic a bit while it was wet but returned it to original (and clean) condition when it dried off. I moved eventually to paintbrush stripper - applied with a saturated cotton ball and left to soak in, then liberally splashed on and scrubbed (to get well into the grooves). The results were worth it.

For the most part, your choice of solvent depends on what you're trying to remove. Match the stripper to the sludge. TEST IT FIRST on an inconspicuous area (the inside of a closet perhaps). That'll either give you the piece of mind you need so that you know you're not doing any permanent damage - or it will warn you that what you're using may be too strong. As of today, I haven't found anything that's too strong yet - that ensolite stuff is AMAZING! I'll create another post in a bit that'll outline which solvents I used for what - right now I want to run outside and have a look at the unit to see what cleaning I'm going to have to do this year.

Hope this helps.

- Miriam
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Old 03-10-2007, 05:16 PM   #61
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Hi: Jon We scrubbed the ensolite in our '77 Boler with Fantastic spray...straight out of the bottle...scrubbed with a brush till it foamed up and rinced with clear warm water. Its a fumey job but it came very clean and 30 yrs. of smoke grease and cooking odours came off At one point in the project there was a brown line across the ceiling sort of a before/after but my pic's didn't turn out The seams can be filled with the D.A.P. white latex caulking and dappled with a wet paper towel eliminating the need for the tape Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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Old 03-10-2007, 10:04 PM   #62
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Thanks so much for the info on cleaning and about removing the tape on the seams. Most of the tape is hanging off so we have to do something. I am going to give it a try tomorrow inside the closet and see what kind of results I get. My husband is wondering if the surfside's came with a battery? Anybody?
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Old 03-11-2007, 01:04 AM   #63
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REMOVING TAPE, CLEANING, AND REMOVING OLD GLUE AND GUNK

Removing Tape:
When I tried to peel mine off, it came off in little, chippy, sticky pieces. Which stuck to my fingers. Which then stuck to the garbage bag. Which then stuck back onto my fingers. ARGH! Then I got smart!
Starting at the bottom of my section of semi-disintegrating foam tape, and using my shop vac, I used the nozzle (without any attachments) to lift the tape and sucked it into the vacuum cleaner. Use the high setting so it doesn't get stuck in the hose. Use a dirty canister so the dust renders the sticky stuff powerless.
Acetone (cheap nail polish remover is almost straight acetone) applied on a cotton pad to the sticky stuff will remove it. Get a good quality pad not a cotton ball or you'll be shedding "fluff."

Cleaning:
I worked my way up to the commercial cleaners rather than use some of the household stuff. TSP (trisodium phosphate - available at hardware stores in the painting department - or any Canadian Tire store) will degrease and clean a lot of the built-up, day-to-day grime. I like the powder better than the ready-mix spray because I can mix a stronger solution. I used the same technique as Alf S.: scrub it on then rinse it off. Rinsing is important because TSP can leave residue. The easiest way I found of rinsing was to get a spray bottle, start at the top and let it run down to a bunch of old towels. Remove your cushions first.
If there's any mildew or mould (black stuff), you'll need a strong bleach. Don't mix your cleansers - bleaches, ammonias and other chemicals react to one another. Wait until the TSP or other solvent is dried before you start with a different chemical / cleanser. And don't knock yourself out with the fumes - use a fan, or all doors and windows open on a breezy day, etc.

Removing Old Glue and Gunk:
Practically everything that goes on somewhat permanently has a solvent to take it off. Acetone works for a lot of the sticky glues. Rubber cement remover works for contact cement. Paint stripper (PolyStrippa or Poly Super Strippa) or brush cleaner (Poly Clens) removes old paint, although try the Shop-Vac technique first because you can often remove the bulk of the paint if it's chipping by vacuuming it well. If you have thick paint to remove, get the gel variety because it will adhere to the paint and you can leave it "soaking" to soften it. I'd apply the Poly Clens with a dripping, saturated cotton pad and have a paper towel handy to wipe up the spills. If the stuff was coming off in little sticky balls, I'd remove it with another cotton pad. I went through a lot of cotton pads. When finished, don't forget to rinse with a mild cleanser. For silicone you can try and work some water around the edges and peel or scrape it off. If it's not budging, scratch the surface of the sealant / caulking and apply Silicone Sealant Remover (Silicone-Be-Gone), then come back and keep scratching. Warning: This is labour-intensive so peel it off if you can. I used a brass brush (like an oversized toothbrush) a lot, both for removing the paint and for removing the sealants. Get these at the dollar stores - often 3 to a package for a buck. The stainless steel ones work, too, but can leave grey marks which will also have to be cleaned off.

Jon, by the time I got to the back of the unit (looks like yours in the picture you posted with the two strips of tape below the windows and black gunk accumulated around it) I had a system. I'd quickly give it a bristle brush and TSP cleansing, rinse it, dry it, then move to the Poly Clens and brass brush with VIGOROUS scrubbing. Once that was rinsed and dried, if there was any contact cement there I'd use the contact cement cleaner. For the really old, dried gobs of contact cement I'd put the solvent on a cotton pad and let the saturated pad sit for a bit (overnight, even). If there was any mildew or mould left after all that, a bit of straight bleach on a cotton pad left on for an hour (or overnight) usually got rid of it. A final rinse with a mild or great-smelling anticbacterial cleanser got rid of any chemical smells.

NOTE: This was for a restoration-type cleaning. Don't think for a minute I do this every year. I had a trailer that had ensolite that looked for all intents and purposes almost completely destroyed in parts. So much so that the previous owners tried to mask the gunky stuff by covering the whole dang thing with spray granite paint. Not everyone will have to do this level of cleaning. To me, it was better than trying to replace the ensolite. Painting over it wasn't an option because the surface wasn't properly prepared to accept paint (which I found out first hand when all the blue granite paint started flaking off). Ensolite is pliable, stretchy and shrinks and expands depending upon the temperature. Paint does this too, but not at the same rate as the ensolite, so that causes it to flake off. If you ever do want to paint, you need to pick a paint that works on plastic.

SAFETY TIPS: Put solvents in small metel cans (like pop cans cut in half) rather than plastic cups. They melt plastic clups. Solvents will also melt all but the heaviest rubber gloves (and sometimes even those). Don't even think of doing this with artificial nails! I wore eye protectors (like plastic glasses). If this stuff splashes, you hands are already covered in it so you're toast. Use a fan or other method of ventilating. If you use a pop can for anything, make sure it looks different than the pop can you're drinking out of. It's so easy to grab one and....

(Thus endeth the lecture.)

- Miriam
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Old 03-11-2007, 01:50 AM   #64
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Old 03-11-2007, 04:32 AM   #65
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Old 03-11-2007, 06:43 PM   #66
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Trailer: 1976 Surfside TM14 (Eggzibit)
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Thanks so much for the info on cleaning and about removing the tape on the seams. Most of the tape is hanging off so we have to do something. I am going to give it a try tomorrow inside the closet and see what kind of results I get. My husband is wondering if the surfside's came with a battery? Anybody?
NOt too sure if they were originally made w/ a battery, but when we bought ours last year it came w/ a battery and 12v lights inside. The wiring looks to be original.
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Old 03-11-2007, 07:03 PM   #67
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NOt too sure if they were originally made w/ a battery, but when we bought ours last year it came w/ a battery and 12v lights inside. The wiring looks to be original.
Mine did not come with a battery and no evidence of there being one before. I haven't heard of others suggesting that there was a battery in theirs either. My original brochure from 1976 is in the trailer (now in storage) so I can't check to see if there is any mention of battery(s) in it.
The 12V lights and wiring are an independent issue. Would draw juice from the tow vehicle's when the wiring is plugged into the tow vehicle.
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Old 03-12-2007, 11:01 PM   #68
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Ours didn't come with a battery, but we have 2 sets of lights - one made to run on plug-in and the other made to run on battery. They've got a spot created so a battery can be hooked up. In a powered site, we use the 110; otherwise the lantern does just fine. All things run on their own source - DVD has it's own battery for instance and....and....hmmmm...can't think of another appliance I bring along. Hmmm...electric can opener? No. Crock pot? No. Toaster oven? No again. Fridge! That's it! I have a three way fridge! Tried the battery one year but it kept shorting out the driving lights. Oh well.

- Miriam
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Old 03-28-2007, 07:34 PM   #69
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Hello everyone, just thought i would let you know that i've now posted our Before, During and After pic's here's the link. Let us know what you think.

http://www.fiberglassrv.com/board/index.ph...st&p=219627


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Old 04-02-2007, 02:01 PM   #70
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Wow, SurfSide city going on here! Regarding the door - after reading about Boler doors filling with water I gave my door a shake and it had a lovely splashing effect too. I drilled two 1/4 inch holes in the bottom and watched as gallons of water poured out. The door is now much lighter to swing and with the water out it must be much lighter on the hinges. My hinges are also screwy. Our door is also 'warped', it seems to be a characteristic of F/G trailers. I took the lock to a locksmith, who for $10 cut a new key and cleaned/lubricated the lock with graphite. Works like new.
Adam
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