Originally Posted by k corbin
After measuring my glass channel dimensions to verify that the product would indeed fit I went ahead and ordered a fuzzy window track liner. It is offered by Vintage Trailers which is where I placed my order for VTS-278 Fuzzy Glass Channel for Airstream Classic & Revcon MHs
Research turned up this material was also used in the 1960's and very early 1970 as auto window glass run channel. You know when you rolled up your car window it went into that lined channel along the sides and top that sealed out the air and kept it from rattling. This stuff is the modern replacement for that era. Because it is also an auto window glass part you can purchase it from J.C.. Whitney as well but it is only a few cents cheaper from them.
I also order one more part, on the upright divider that is on the inside of the window there is a fuzzy weather strip piece. When I took the aluminum divider out to get a good look at it and touched the material to check its condition all the fuzz fell off onto the floor. It is another one of the universal auto glass materials but it too was used to make trailer windows.
That material is Vintage Trailer Supply part:
VTS-277 Pile Weatherstripping for Airstream Classic MHs
This is going to be an expensive rejuvination to get those windows functional again! So far just for this one purchase it was a little over $80.00 plus shipping. Of course I still need the outside gaskets and there is the cost of butyl tape as well.
Plus I need to fabricate a spacer ring for the inside. I had removed the felted wall liner the other night. There was an additional piece of material used in a ring right under the clamp frame. That material was just the old style grey felted carpet padding one would have found in a home. Not sure what I will make the spacer from, maybe one of the pieces of plastics we have lots of scraps of in the workshop. It can be cut on the tablesaw and it won't rot the way plywood might if a leak develops. Good to use up scraps and have it turn out better than new
I am now working on replacing the pile weatherstrip that the window glass slides in. The name for it is "window glass run channel". I did purchase the material from Vintage Trailer supply, see quoted product information above. This product sort of works, it does fit into the aluminum frame...with some strong persuasion. The glass, which is 3/16" thick in case wondered about that, does fit between the felt..but you can't slide the glass because the channel binds it up with a too tight fit distance wise across the glass. That means I can't get the window frame itself to meet at the cut edges for putting the rivets back into it. So basically it was a failed installation of new felting.
But I did need to make that rubber felt channel filler work. I had to make it work because I did not want to return the material to Vintage Trailer. There was nothing wrong with the product other than my Campster
not having enough space next to the glass for that product. I entered into the "what if?" phase where you try to figure out how to make what you have work for you. I am not saying anyone should do what I describe below. Your renovation would be easier if you found a better fitting material. But since I had used up my budget my only choice was to make do with what I had.
If you look at the product photo you will see there are small projections of rubber on each side at the base. Those can (with effort) be pushed into the aluminum channel which has some small projecting ribs along its length. The rubber projections lock under that small aluminum rib in the channel. But what was happening was that the force of that compression on the width of the rubber base was of forcing the bottom height of the rubber upwards and that meant the window was then too wide for the width between the felt channels and it could not be slid back and forth. Another issue was the projecting rubber flange would not fit under the aluminum ribs as it went around the curves at the end of the window frame. That of course kept the glass from being able to seat properly in the channel when the window was closed. As you take the felt channel around the curve it will already make the felt edge bunch up around the curve so that issue is further multiplied. Oh well, I will sort that issue out too.
For the modification I did the following, along the sides I trimmed off the projecting bit of the rubber "fingers". But now that it was no longer being compressed width wise which made the bottom thicker and taller the glass was now too loose in the channel as it was wider than optimal and the glass wanted to fall
out. ....Oh yeah life is like that, fix one thing and the next thing happens
. So then I had to snug the felt channel back up against the glass by adhering in a filler strip at the bottom of the aluminum window frame. I chose the bottom for the filler strip because of gravity and the weight
of the glass working to my advantage to keep it in place along with a little bit of adhesive of course. I did not extend that filler strip on into the curved areas or up the sides. It only at the flat lower edge of the frame. I made the filler strip 3/8" wide so that it fit down between the ribs in the aluminum channel of the frame. The thickness needed for a filler is right around 3/16" maybe a little under. That is one of those you have to try it and see situations as your frame height top to bottom might be slightly different than mine. So now the glass fits nicely into the channel and it slides with only a small amount of pressure needed to drag the glass along in the channel. You do want a small amount of friction as that means the drafts won't come in.
One sliding window made operable again
another one to go. I will put a better description of the modifications of the felt channel with photos in my Campster
modification thread when I work on that second window.
I still have the issue of the seal strip covers that are along the outside to resolve. No doubt when I find something it too will also require modification to adapt it for use on the Campster.