Anyone "X-Ray" a Fiberstream? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-05-2007, 07:13 AM   #1
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Hi All,
I just had the new Fiberstream follow me home from Arizona and I have to say,I really like this new rig.

I will probably remove and build all new cabinets in it and maybe even alter the layout but I don't really have time to do it right now.
I also don't want it torn apart that far during the season.

Soooooo what I am trying to figure out is.......How the heck is the interior shell attached?????

On mine the inside walls appear to be a thin Luan panel and it does contour to the curves of the trailer. There is about a 3/4" space tween the outer fiberglass and the luan and there is just soft foam sheeting inside there I think?
What I can not figure out is how the luan is connected to the trailer above the floor?

At the floor level there are blocks of wood screwed to the floor and the luan is then tacked or screwed to them. Are there more blocks glued,glassed or something up higher to hold the inside walls in place? Then what about the ceiling?

There is certainly a way for me to find all this out but I am just not ready to go there just yet but I will if it comes to it.

I am afraid the entire insides are just attached to each other sort making a big island floating inside the fiberglass held together internally but not really attached.

I don't want to attach though the fiberglass any more than I have to but I also am not going to install anything new that is not strong and safe.

Any one in the know? How bout theory? I will even take wild conjecture?

Thanks
Ed
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Old 04-05-2007, 08:18 AM   #2
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It is help up by what the engineers call FM. That is the abreviation for Fiberglass Magic.
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Old 04-05-2007, 11:20 AM   #3
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Some Fiber Stream owners have posted reports of their interior modifications involving bunks, which were supported by wood blocks which were bonded (presumably by fiberglass resin or epoxy, and maybe even 'glassed over) to the shell.

The same bonded wood block method is used for the dinette table hinge in many trailers, I believe including my Boler, and my centre ceiling light was definitely done that way. The Escape web site reports that's how their interior is done, to avoid rivets through the shell.

What actually holds the luan paneling? I don't know, but I would guess it's screwed to more of those blocks.
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Old 04-05-2007, 11:54 AM   #4
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John Lawrence, your seller, Victor Benz and possibly Ellen B. have done the most extensive work on their Fiber Streams. I suspect they are more knowlegeable than the rest of us about the innards of the trailer.
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Old 04-05-2007, 01:44 PM   #5
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Quote:
John Lawrence, your seller, Victor Benz and possibly Ellen B. have done the most extensive work on their Fiber Streams. I suspect they are more knowlegeable than the rest of us about the innards of the trailer.
Thanks Benita,
John didn't really delve into the wall too much when doing the mods to the bunks.

He too was not certain of what is holding them in and though he did paper them there are spots where there seems to be no backing at all. In fact some of the trim is screwed seemingly to just the luan so that they both sort of flop around if you push against them.

I am hoping Victor will chime in regarding this as he must have removed a lot of the walls to do his mods.

I do have a question for you too.....what type of paint did you use on the bathroom walls? Also was the toilet half of the bath wood walled and the shower raw glass? or was the entire bath fiberglass when you got it?

Thanks
Ed
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Old 04-05-2007, 01:46 PM   #6
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Quote:
Some Fiber Stream owners have posted reports of their interior modifications involving bunks, which were supported by wood blocks which were bonded (presumably by fiberglass resin or epoxy, and maybe even 'glassed over) to the shell.

The same bonded wood block method is used for the dinette table hinge in many trailers, I believe including my Boler, and my centre ceiling light was definitely done that way. The Escape web site reports that's how their interior is done, to avoid rivets through the shell.

What actually holds the luan paneling? I don't know, but I would guess it's screwed to more of those blocks.
Brian
I suspect that this is the method used but I can not see evidence of it without some surgery.
I am just trying to get some confirmation before "going in".

Thanks
Ed
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Old 04-05-2007, 01:48 PM   #7
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It is help up by what the engineers call FM. That is the abreviation for Fiberglass Magic.
Bob
I thought it was the Military that used that terminology? Specifically the Air Force?

I understand there is an experimental program they refer to as "Pure FM" but your definition is slightly different than theirs?

Go Figure?
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Old 04-06-2007, 09:35 AM   #8
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Quote:
Some Fiber Stream owners have posted reports ... involving [b]bunks, which were supported by [b]wood blocks which were bonded ... to the shell.
This is how the furniture is attached in areas where there are no through-hull screws. These blocks are minimal in my Fiber Stream, though. One long strip for [b]each bunk along the side wall. No support whatsoever in any curved corner. The [b]kitchen counter has a small block bonded to the shell in mid-span between the transverse walls; I presume to support the weight of the stove in the long (4') span of the counter.

Even though my Fiber Stream has no interior paneling covering the shell walls, my [b]conjecture is that your insulation substance may be glued to the fiberglass shell, probably with construction adhesive applied with a caulking gun. The paneling would also be glued to the insulation in the same manner. These surfaces have no structural support role, and would have been installed last, after all walls and cabinets were attached with screws through the hull.

I used to live in, and repair/remodel '60s and '70s vintage mobile homes (admittedely of "Stickie" construction) and this was the method of installing the "Tile Board" shower walls above their bath tubs. I doubt the manufacturer of Fiber Stream did it any differently. Removal of this material usually meant it's total destruction, requiring new replacement materials for everything the construction adhesive touched.

Quote:
I thought it was the Military that used that terminology? Specifically the Air Force?
Funny, I thought that was a NAVY term.
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Old 04-06-2007, 11:05 AM   #9
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Thanks Fred for taking a shot at this.

The insulation I have is just thin soft foam and can not be glued in nor glued to really.
I think you are correct that there must be blocks somehow attached to the inside of the fiberglass shell and then what little fastening is to them.

Every thing interior seems to "Float" somewhat inside the shell except the counter and cabinets of the Kitchen area,The Bath and the closet. There is also thin plastic bumper tape? between most mating surfaces that I presume provides some shock absorbing action as the trailer moves down th road and flexes some.

I want to make sure that anything I do that enhances cosmetics also enhances the structure if possible.
I suppose I could use construction adhesive to lay in blocking where I need it for any improvements that I make.Given enough time to setup that stuff adheres well to almost anything.

I also need to do work in the bathroom which the former owner never/rarely used and it is a little scary. I plan on putting a new fiberglass panel on the wall with the kitchen and then painting the raw fiberglass. What I am dying to know is what the shower curtain must look like to work in there?

Thanks
Ed
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Old 04-06-2007, 01:18 PM   #10
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...The insulation I have is just thin soft foam and can not be glued in...
The foam lining in most trailers seems to be glued in; the soft open-cell plastic foam in my Boler (not the usual foam-rubber Ensolite) is definitely glued on; for my repair work I used 3M Super 90 spray adhesive to reattach it.

Quote:
...I suppose I could use construction adhesive to lay in blocking where I need it for any improvements that I make.Given enough time to setup that stuff adheres well to almost anything...
The plywood block for my ceiling light fixture had come off of the fiberglass (it looks like the factory put it on with resin or epoxy), and previous owners had injected various junk through holes in the foam/vinyl lining material to glue it back in place; however, by the time I got it the block and light were suspended by the lining and wiring. It was a mess to clean up and the lining in that area was unsalvageable.

The glues which did not work appeared to be silicone sealant (no surprise) and construction adhesive. I think the construction adhesive failed because it wasn't put in the right place, the block wasn't clamped in place for curing, and it was probably the wrong type. It was difficult to remove.

I checked the labels on the various tubes of construction adhesive and found one which was specifically intended to bond plastics to wood, normally for shower wall installation; the information is also available from LePage.

Quote:
Originally posted by LePage Products FAQ
[b]Are all PL Construction adhesives the same?

No, the PL Construction adhesives are all different. Each one is specially formulated and designed for a specific in use. Read all packaging carefully.
...
What adhesive can I use to bond plastic?

Plastic is a very difficult surface to bond. In most cases, consumers are not sure of what type of plastic they’re trying to bond. Polyethylene, polypropylene and nylon are very common plastics used in today's market and they're also very difficult to bond. Styrene, on the other hand, is relatively easy to bond but very susceptible to solvent adhesives. LePage offers PL 700 for the bonding of tubsurround panels that are made of styrene. It is also a suitable adhesive for bonding other types of plastics as well. Small pieces of plastic can be bonded with cyanoacrylate adhesive such as LePage Super Glue. If you are unsure of what adhesive to use, please contact the LePage Technical Service Department for assistance.
As I recall, I used PL 700 for my replacement ceiling block, and propped it in place for curing with a stick to the floor. It has been in place for a couple of years now.
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Old 04-11-2007, 12:16 AM   #11
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Quote:
What I am dying to know is what the shower curtain must look like to work in there?
Sorry it took me so long to answer, but I wanted to get pictures...

Click image for larger version

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Here are some shots of my shower curtain open and closed.
Attached Thumbnails
000_0520.jpg  
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Old 04-11-2007, 12:20 AM   #12
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Click image for larger version

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The curtain track has these eyelets that slide in a central groove.
The back wall has several pieces of Velcro glued in place.
Attached Thumbnails
000_0521.jpg  
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Old 04-11-2007, 12:27 AM   #13
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The curtain itself is made out of a plain cotton/polyester blend material, and is shaped to follow the curve of the trailer. There are 6 tiny grommets in the hem of the curtain. I use small "keyrings" as curtain rings. There are also matching Velcro pieces sewn onto the curtain.

The hard "hook" part of the Velcro is glued to the wall, and the soft "loop" part is sewn onto the curtain.

I "store" the curtain on the high side, next to the kitchen wall, so the bottom can dry out between uses.
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Old 04-11-2007, 08:49 AM   #14
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Love the clarity of the photos, Frederick. Must be a new camera, hmmmm?
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