To rivet or not to rivet? - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-05-2015, 09:13 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by Darral T. View Post
If you own a new trailer with rivets you're a potential victim to leaks. Just buy plenty of snap caps, rivets and silicone. You'll have them when you need them. I think Scamp sells the "kits" now....
No, NO, NO.. No silicone EVER on the exterior of your beautiful all-molded-towable. How many times does it need to be said? REALLY? GRRRRRRRRRRRRR.
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Old 05-05-2015, 09:40 PM   #30
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No, NO, NO.. No silicone EVER on the exterior of your beautiful all-molded-towable. How many times does it need to be said? REALLY? GRRRRRRRRRRRRR.
It'll have to be a few more times yet before you start to convince me.
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Old 05-05-2015, 09:43 PM   #31
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Now that's interesting, Floyd. The caps do not last long in my area (high altitude combined with lots of sun). I have also found them a nuisance when I am waxing the trailer.

What would you (and others) think about skipping the washers and caps when I replace a couple of rivets this year?
I would stick with the caps and just spend the twenty bucks and twenty minutes every few years.
What gets me is ... why doesn't someone make UV resistant caps? Maybe I'll contact the manufacturer.
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Old 05-05-2015, 09:47 PM   #32
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What gets me is ... why doesn't someone make UV resistant caps? Maybe I'll contact the manufacturer.
The cable guy installing cable ( what else? ) outside my white house apologized for the black clips he was using. He told me that the white clips were not UV resistant.
So, you could probably buy black rivet caps.
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Old 05-05-2015, 09:59 PM   #33
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The cable guy installing cable ( what else? ) outside my white house apologized for the black clips he was using. He told me that the white clips were not UV resistant.
So, you could probably buy black rivet caps.
As I have said before... RED would be my second choice... Making mine "One measley little Scamp!

Actually...I have indoor climate controlled storage so cap replacement intervals are greatly increased.
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Old 05-05-2015, 10:00 PM   #34
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When it's time to replace the caps, BEFORE the clear snap washers deterioate, spray the caps with Fusion paint. The UV inhibators in the paint will give you a few more years.
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Old 05-05-2015, 10:01 PM   #35
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It'll have to be a few more times yet before you start to convince me.
You are a hard man to convince Floyd.... which is different than a hard-headed man!
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Old 05-05-2015, 10:17 PM   #36
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When it's time to replace the caps, BEFORE the clear snap washers deterioate, spray the caps with Fusion paint. The UV inhibators in the paint will give you a few more years.
That just may be a great idea!! Maybe you could even find different shades of paint to match the Scamp gelcoat as it ages!
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Old 05-06-2015, 12:06 AM   #37
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You are a hard man to convince Floyd.... which is different than a hard-headed man!
so true!
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Old 05-06-2015, 08:43 AM   #38
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To rivet or not to rivet?

In airplanes, I have never had to deal with rivet failures as a part of routine maintenance and I
I have flown through plenty of "bumpy air".
I would like the same to be true of my travel trailer!

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Old 05-06-2015, 08:48 AM   #39
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For what it is worth the rivets between the closet and the shell right at the curve of the roof can require a slightly longer grip range than the other closet rivets to fit well. Found this when replacing my original rivets with ones having snap caps. Not enough tip comes through to expand inside the nut, much of the expansion takes place in the hole through the fiberglass.

The curved roof and the curved section of closet are either a small amount thicker, or will not draw as tight together as the flat surface. I ended up using the trick that Carol H. posted to cut the next size longer rivet down for a custom fit, then the expansion was inside the acorn nut and it drew the closet in tightly.

As for counter sunk washers? I'm not a big fan of doing a counter sink free hand in fiberglass that is 1/8 inch thick.

As for sillycon caulk you should be forced to sit on a stool in the corner while someone cleans all that goop off of an old trailer they have just purchased. I think you will find the second day tougher on the backside than the first day of sitting. Bah! About the only thing I think silicon caulk is good for is during trailer inspection it lets you know where to look for the leaks the owner TRIED to repair.

Note the leaks are not fixed, the prev. owner just put that string of sticky rubber on there so it would collect dirt and they would know where the leak was and not put stuff in that area.
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Old 05-06-2015, 10:08 AM   #40
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Good point Ray. Come to think of it, they dont sandwich insulation and rat fur between the pieces they're riveting together either. Come to think of it, they dont use snap caps either.

HMM... good one for Carol here to research.... I wonder if aluminum Airstreams have this problem with rivets loosening?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rdickens View Post
In airplanes, I have never had to deal with rivet failures as a part of routine maintenance and I
I have flown through plenty of "bumpy air".
I would like the same to be true of my travel trailer!

Ray

Sent from my iPad using Fiberglass RV
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Old 05-06-2015, 10:25 AM   #41
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If one wants to replace all their camper rivets with aircraft grade I'm sure they can. Might be a bit pricey. Might find a bit of a difference between riveting fiberglass panels together and riveting aircraft grade aluminum.

There are sealing rivets for sale, one can purchase rivets of stronger alloys. Both of these options cost money.

As I said before how much of a difference is there between a rivet or a bolt/machine screw? Fixed head on one end, check. Shaft going through materials, check. Other end has movable head to pull materials together? check.

Me thinks this is a difference without a distinction. Use what makes you happy or is easiest for you to work with. No right answer, or wrong one either. If you buy a tarp to camp under figure you will have to maintain that tarp, maintain and eventually replace the rope, or grommets or poles at some point. Buy a trailer full of rivets.....
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Old 05-06-2015, 12:26 PM   #42
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So far I have never had a problem with UV degradation of stainless steel screws and washers.
As to aircraft rivets, They would be a great deal less expensive to purchase than pop rivets, but finding someone to help buck them might be a problem. Also you would have to make arrangements for some washers on the backside to give them some area to grip. Also on my Scamp I found bucked aircraft rivets along the door riveting the closet in. They were bucked and installed so that the trim piece would not be held off by the end of a pop rivet!
Personally I added bracing from the frame to the sides of the shell so that there would be more than the four contact areas over where the frame passes for support.
Now the shell is supported along each side and the front and rear and not just holding up the outer edges of the OSB floor. I suspect this will be quite a bit less flexible than the original arrangement.
Also if you look at the washers I pictured the contact area is the OD of the thing and not the countersink. This spreads out the load over the 1/2" - 3/4" area of the washer.
The butyl rubber sealant under the washer and in the "hole" should keep the water out as good as the snap caps and be impervious to the UV. Also the stainless won't extrude under load and lose compression either.
Time will tell.
This is what the assembled washer and screw look like:

Here is how they are usually used:

All in all these are good items in aircraft with the bumps that go along with that!
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