Working on a Trillium 5500 - Page 7 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-22-2016, 10:59 AM   #85
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Silicone party!



Rotten wood frame:



Screws UNDER the window frame. I just don't get this.




Old rotten wood coming out.



Frame cleaned:




New cedar wood frame:

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Old 05-22-2016, 11:02 AM   #86
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Silicone mess:



These screws were holding the shelf inside the trailer!



I used butyl tape for the window, and for the rock guard as well. Stainless steel screws all over.
Once back in place, with the newly painted panels, here's how it looks. My repairs are not perfect, they still show in some places, but overall I'm satisfied with the look.






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Old 05-22-2016, 11:04 AM   #87
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Couple more photos:





Window cleaned, like new:

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Old 05-22-2016, 01:35 PM   #88
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Gosh that looks amazing. Great job.
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Old 05-22-2016, 04:19 PM   #89
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Du vrai travail de pro. Félicitations! Si vos travaux sont terminés, j'espère qu'on vous verra au Bolerama de l'automne au camping de la Roche d'or en Beauce. Bolerama 2016 - Le coin du campeur
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Old 05-22-2016, 04:43 PM   #90
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Originally Posted by LucilleL View Post
Du vrai travail de pro. Félicitations! Si vos travaux sont terminés, j'espère qu'on vous verra au Bolerama de l'automne au camping de la Roche d'or en Beauce. Bolerama 2016 - Le coin du campeur
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Real working pro. Congratulations! If your work is completed, I hope to see you at Bolerama fall camping of the Golden Rock in Beauce.
Great job Carl

Looks like all that silicone kept the moisture out... NOT
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Old 05-22-2016, 04:52 PM   #91
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Originally Posted by LucilleL View Post
j'espère qu'on vous verra au Bolerama de l'automne au camping de la Roche d'or en Beauce.
J'y serai comme visiteur, sans la roulotte c'est certain.
Je vais être chanceux si elle est prête pour la rencontre de 2017!!

(I'll show up as a visitor, not with the trailer for sure.
I'll be lucky if it's ready for the 2017 rally!)

Thanks all for the comments!

More stuff will come up later, but we're also starting a huge reno project in our house (new kitchen cabinets, new floor all over, and new doors/windows). So unfortunately the trailer will have to go on the back burner for while.
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Old 05-22-2016, 07:23 PM   #92
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(I'll show up as a visitor, not with the trailer for sure.
I'll be lucky if it's ready for the 2017 rally!)
Nice work Carl.

I suggest you just go to the rally, finished or not.

If I waited for my trailer to be finished before going to a rally I would have missed out on a decade of rallies. My first bolerama and trip out east to the PEI rally back in 2006 would not have happened. That was done with duck tape patching the hole in the roof. Who knows when I'm going to be finished.

Donna D got me to thinking that way. Sorry if I misquote her but it went something like this ... "Just think of your trailer as a hard tent on wheels".
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Old 05-22-2016, 08:18 PM   #93
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Carl,
I was wondering what you used to polish the window frames.. I've used Eagle One Mag wheel cleaner (more or less a acid base cleaner) to clean mine and I've tried Brasso and also a can of cotton with some kind of polishing liquid in it I got from Lowe's that the salesman recommended but both of these are not doing what I want and is very very labor intensive .. It's also a real pain to get into those tight corners but it looks like you was able too.. So what's your secret if you don't mine me asking. Because yours looks great.. I noticed that after cleaning mine with the Eagle One that black streaks form down the sides of my camper below the sides of my windows, so I know they need polishing to prevent this just need to know what...
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Old 05-22-2016, 08:35 PM   #94
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Well even if we had to, I don't even think we'd be able to live in that trailer as of right now.
I post my works on this thread once they are done. I looks like I start on a new job, finish it all the way, then post the results here. In fact, I have multiple jobs going on simultaneously. Like right now, I'm working on my galley, the oven is out (there are some issues with it), there is no countertop, the "hutch" above it is in pieces, so the gas lines are disconnected (fridge & heater can't work), I've removed the sink and faucet so no water either, the electrical system is a total mess and there's definitely no usable 120V or 12V system right now, although I've worked on electrical schematics and already bought most of what I'll need (I'm starting over, totally new electrical system, Ac & DC). There is no flooring, just a dirty plywood (new flooring was bought last week), and there are still many issues that would have to be fixed before we could think about going camping.

While we're redoing our house kitchen and floors, we'll probably have to "camp" in our driveway for a few days. We still have our trusty Coleman popup camper, that's probably where we'll be living for some time this summer, and if we can go out camping for a weekend it will be with the popup.

We've been to 2 FG rallies as guests, both were near Quebec City, and we were specifically targeting our visits to the few 5500s. We've met some 5500 owners, we've seen up close about about 10 of them so far and met very nice people. Especially last year, as we were not "shopping around" for a 5500 anymore, we just had bought our own.

So yes, we will show up at the next rally, hopefully as visitors for the last time. Our target is to have the camper useable enough for the 2017 rally.
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Old 05-22-2016, 09:12 PM   #95
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Carl,
I was wondering what you used to polish the window frames..
Hi Randy

For the windows, I've simply used a wire wheel brush on my drill. I've only used it on the outer frame, where the screws are, not and the pane frames.
I went with a small hand brush for the tight corners where the wheel wouldn't go.
I have not had the black streaks issue.
Going with polishers and chemical stuff would have taken forever. Also, there was a lot of sealant residue (silicone and what else) that was much easier to remove mechanically (wire wheel) that chemically (silicone remover - a slow process).

It sure looks good, especially in photos, in reality they are not perfect. Also, my understanding is that a thin layer or oxydation normally occurs on aluminium, which further protects it from oxydation. Now that wire wheel sure took that oxydation layer off, and I don't know how how that "bare" aluminium will be after some time. Hopefully not as bad as it initially was.

I did the same with the rock guard frame. It may have been anodized aluminium, where that oxydation layer is made thicker by electrochemical process, and again, the metal brush may have removed that protective layer, I don't know.

To make it shinier, I tried some Nevr Dull polish. My fingers got dirty black, and the rock guard frame too. It got very hard to clean, and I ended up using acetone and lots of rags to clean that black stuff off. First experience with Nevr Dull, I didn't like it.

Then I decided to try the metal polishing kit I bought on sale at Canadian Tire last fall. It consists of 3 different size buffing wheels for your drill, and 3 different polishing compounds (they look like big crayons). That worked much better, and with the "cutting compound" I did get a shiny finish. But again I had to clean the black residue with acetone and / or brake cleaner and used a lot of rags that quickly got dirty black (however not as bad as with NeverDull). The final result is what you see in the pictures. How long that shine will last, I don't know!

Once my front window was back in place, I was able to glue back the ensolite inside and below that window, and reinstall the dinette table. Now that table is attached to the front wall with an aluminium bracket that looked pretty rough, with scratches and black marks typical of aluminium parts rubbing together. I still had the buffing wheel on my drill, so I decided to try to clean and buff that bracket a bit. To my surprise, after a few minutes, it got virtually like chrome. Most of the scratches were gone, and i had a nice mirror finish.

Another thing I tried this afternoon: I was emptying the dishwasher and came up on a spoon we have in our cutlery set. Some time ago that spoon was forgotten in the blender, and although the spoon won the battle (spoon survived, blender died) it got serious war wounds as you can imagine. I brought the spoon in my shop and used the polishing wheel and compound, and after a few minutes that spoon came out shinier than new (wife wouldn't believe it was the same spoon). It still shows a few scratches but nothing like before. So that polishing wheel and compound really work!
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Old 05-24-2016, 04:17 PM   #96
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It is my understanding that aluminum is in fact quite reactive and prone to oxidation. In fact, it is that oxidation that protects it from corrosion. Any attempt to remove this oxidation is just going to promote corrosion.

I have seen airplanes that were polished aluminum, but I think that they were clear coated.
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Old 05-25-2016, 07:24 AM   #97
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Hi Dave

Before I started, my rock guard frame really looked bad, with oxydation, dirt, grime, mould, sealant residue, etc. I just wanted to take that off, and I could never do it with, lets say, a hand brush and some cleaner, and hope to keep that "protective" oxydation layer at the same time.
Now if the frame starts to tarnish in the future, at least I think I'll be able to keep it clean, and my goal is not to keep it super shiny, as long as it looks clean I'm fine.
But we'll see. May be I'll regret that hard brushing, but I doubt it'll ever corrode and get as tarnished and dirty as it was. I don't think "dull looking" necessarily means damaging corrosion.
My window frames got the same brushing last year. They still look pretty good.

Aircrafts on aluminium usually don't have a clear coat. Older airstream trailers are on bare aluminium too (newer models are clear coated from the factory, not the Airstream factory, but straight from Alcoa).
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Old 05-31-2016, 09:28 AM   #98
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I am sure that the oxidation layer will reform quickly. Aluminum is quite reactive. But I am surprised that aircraft don't use clear coat. I wonder how they keep that mirror like finish? Most seem painted today.
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