Best tool to cut through roof - Fiberglass RV


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Old 12-16-2011, 11:17 AM   #1
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Best tool to cut through roof

I have two 3/8" holes approx 1.5" apart in the roof of my Trillium - previously used to mount a TV antenna. I want to cut the roof to make one hole then glass, Bondo, etc.

What is the best tool to use for cutting - jigsaw, Dremel, other? What type of blade?

The area to cut is thick and I want to avoid cracking the roof while cutting.

Thanks in advance!
John
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Old 12-16-2011, 11:46 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by RixyRV View Post
I have two 3/8" holes approx 1.5" apart in the roof of my Trillium - previously used to mount a TV antenna. I want to cut the roof to make one hole then glass, Bondo, etc.

What is the best tool to use for cutting - jigsaw, Dremel, other? What type of blade?

The area to cut is thick and I want to avoid cracking the roof while cutting.

Thanks in advance!
John
A Rotozip type tool works great on Fiberglass trailers.
Dremel makes one too and I am sure there are others, but I'm talking about those tools which are kinda like a small router with a cutting blade which resembles a drill bit.
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Old 12-16-2011, 11:51 AM   #3
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Whatever you use I would want really fine teeth so as not to grab and crack the fiberglass.
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Old 12-16-2011, 12:21 PM   #4
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Since I retired 7 years ago I have refurbished at least 8 Eggs.
I've added fantastic fans, Escape hatches, Storage hatches aand round deck plates to acess water tank drain valves.
I started with a jig saw, went to my Dremel with a cutting blade then I bought an oscillating multi function tool from Harbor Freight. I think it was around $30.00.
It is by far the best and easiest tool I have used to cut fiberglass. It makes a nice clean cut.
Harbor Freight sells low quality junk but for no more than it's going to be used it will last me along time.
I would use a slightly larger drill bit to bevel the holes and then use the Fiberglass Bondo.
John
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Old 12-16-2011, 01:09 PM   #5
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Since I retired 7 years ago I have refurbished at least 8 Eggs.
I've added fantastic fans, Escape hatches, Storage hatches aand round deck plates to acess water tank drain valves.
I started with a jig saw, went to my Dremel with a cutting blade then I bought an oscillating multi function tool from Harbor Freight. I think it was around $30.00.
It is by far the best and easiest tool I have used to cut fiberglass. It makes a nice clean cut.
Harbor Freight sells low quality junk but for no more than it's going to be used it will last me along time.
I would use a slightly larger drill bit to bevel the holes and then use the Fiberglass Bondo.
John
I have one of those but never thought of using it for that purpose.
Do you think it is more stable?more or lessdust?
I'll give it a try anyway.
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Old 12-16-2011, 01:28 PM   #6
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I have used a rockwell multi function tool . Hole saws and a jig saw with fine tooth blades to cut holes in fiberglass ( receptacles , roof fan ,access doors etc. )
by far the multi purpose tool does the best job - "neater cuts - less chipping- less dust - wanders less causing less o s_ _ts.
Don't know about harbor freight but the rockwell is a decent tool
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Old 12-16-2011, 03:42 PM   #7
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I have used a rockwell multi function tool . Hole saws and a jig saw with fine tooth blades to cut holes in fiberglass ( receptacles , roof fan ,access doors etc. )
by far the multi purpose tool does the best job - "neater cuts - less chipping- less dust - wanders less causing less o s_ _ts.
Don't know about harbor freight but the rockwell is a decent tool
I also got Rockwell Multifunction tool and used it on fiberglass, great tool. For Christmas I am getting 12V Nextec Craftsman tool with quick release feature. Since expiration of Feinís patent in October of 2008 for this type of tool there is good and growing selection on the market. Until patent expiration Fein cornered the market perfectly.
George.
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Old 12-16-2011, 04:01 PM   #8
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Be sure to put down masking tape and mark the tape where you will cut and cut through the tape and it will give you a cleaner edge where you cut.
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Old 12-16-2011, 05:09 PM   #9
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I would just plug the holes. Why make them bigger? Sounds like more work to me.
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Old 12-16-2011, 05:55 PM   #10
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I read all the posts up the previous one and was thinking "why isn't anyone saying, why make more work?"

I have to agree, I'd just bevel the edges of the holes, not just a little bit, at least 3/8" out so that the repair gains mechanical strength as well as fairs smoothly into the existing structure.

Ron
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Old 12-16-2011, 06:00 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RixyRV View Post
I have two 3/8" holes approx 1.5" apart in the roof of my Trillium - previously used to mount a TV antenna. I want to cut the roof to make one hole then glass, Bondo, etc.

What is the best tool to use for cutting - jigsaw, Dremel, other? What type of blade?

The area to cut is thick and I want to avoid cracking the roof while cutting.

Thanks in advance!
John
As Floyd said one of the rotozip type tools works really really well. I cut a hole using the rotozip type attachment to my dremel. I've never cut a hole in any kind of plastic or fiberglass as smooth as I did with that tool. I really surprised at the control and no chip out. I didn't use any tape over the cutting line, no chip out. I was skeptical, but when I got through all I could say is WOW.
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Old 12-16-2011, 07:21 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Ron in BC View Post
I read all the posts up the previous one and was thinking "why isn't anyone saying, why make more work?"

I have to agree, I'd just bevel the edges of the holes, not just a little bit, at least 3/8" out so that the repair gains mechanical strength as well as fairs smoothly into the existing structure.

Ron
I agree, 2 small holes to patch is better than patching one big hole. Use a countersink tool, bevel the holes and then patch with fiber infused Bondo or USC Duraglass.
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Old 12-16-2011, 08:12 PM   #13
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I would just plug the holes. Why make them bigger? Sounds like more work to me.
I like this idea. A 3/8 inch carriage bolt sealed with your favorite sealant on the outside, and a fender washer and nut on the inside.

YMMV, of course.

-- Dan Meyer
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Old 12-16-2011, 09:40 PM   #14
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I have one of those but never thought of using it for that purpose.
Do you think it is more stable?more or lessdust?
I'll give it a try anyway.
Floyd

My experience has been that if you take fiberglass dust and throw it into a fan pointing at your face you will not be as covered as if you use a Roto Zip to cut !

The Multi Master tools allow for a mostly dust minimized precise cut in fiberglass but I will tell you that Venetian plaster is a whole other story.

I'll tell you about it in Fl.!

Ed
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