How do we cover/paint that yellow seam tape? - Fiberglass RV

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Old 05-17-2006, 04:14 AM   #1
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Trailer: 82 Scamp 13 ft
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and we're trying to anticipate some of the work we want to do. So, do people generally paint the tape? (Is it seam tape?) What kind of paint? Or do we replace the tape with a different color?

Ann Johnson

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Old 05-17-2006, 10:09 AM   #2
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That tape you see is, I think- something that was UNDER the original seam tape???? There was some of it remaining in our old Scamp, too- most of it was already torn off the walls. I tore off the remaining stuff- it felt like some sort of paper to me, probably had some coating and the adhesive on it originally.

I am going to eventually stroll the section of the home improvement stores where they have the paneling, and plumbing, anywhere they have plastic stripping to see if any can be put to use as seam covering. Some one on this board used a part of paneling seam joiners to cover his seams.

Someone else merely covered them with white bathtub silicone caulking.

I know you CAN order new seam tape direct from Scamp if you want.

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Old 05-17-2006, 07:06 PM   #3
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Thanks, Deb. I wonder if anybody knows for sure what those yellow things are?

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Old 05-17-2006, 07:22 PM   #4
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I wonder if anybody knows for sure what those yellow things are?
Scamps are just like the original Bolers.
The Boler Story: An interview with Ray Olecko
an excerpt from the link above:
The initial run of 40 units had no insulation, but as condensation was a problem, he recalled all 40 to retrofit them with the Ensolite material. This product had been developed by Uniroyal and was being used in the cockpits of airplanes. It was available only in a 2-inch thick size, but he persuaded them to shave it down to 3/16 of an inch, and he cut it into sections to fit the curves of the Boler. He says that the seam tape was a 3M 2-sided tape. [b]When the inside paper backing was removed, of course the surface was sticky, and he solved this problem by simply rubbing talcum powder over it!!. (this tape should still be available).
Frederick - The Scaleman
1978 Fiber Stream 16 named "Eggstasy" & 1971 Compact Jr. named "Boomerang"
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Old 05-17-2006, 07:58 PM   #5
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In the Boler we had, I tore off the seam tape (what little was left anyway). The gaps left were filled in with paintable caulk. Then the whole shebang (ensolite and seam caulk) was hit with spray paint (lots of threads on painting ensolite - most, I think, have used melamine paint. I used spray vinyl. If I repeated I'd try plastic paint).

The caulk-filled seams end up looking very nice IMHO. A much smoother finish in the end than seam tape.

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Old 05-17-2006, 07:59 PM   #6
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Thanks, Frederick. So I gather that what I'm seeing (we don't pick it up for a week) is the intact paper covering the stickiness of the 2-sided seam tape. Good. And thanks for introducing me to the mysteries of Ensolite. I'll have to get familiar with terms like this and Gel-coat, whatever that may be.

If it's just paper, I think I'll lightly paint it to blemd in with the walls.

Ann Johnson
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Old 05-18-2006, 04:56 PM   #7
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What you're most likely looking at (the yellow stripes) is the foam tape itself which has yellowed with age.
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Old 05-23-2006, 02:01 PM   #8
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Hi Ann,

You are probably best to yank off all the seam tape, reseal the seams with paintable caulking, and paint the walls and seams with a washable gloss paint (we used exterior paint a year ago, and it still feels tacky) for washability. It really looks nice!

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Old 05-23-2006, 08:15 PM   #9
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I have been messing with this problem longer than anything else in my whole restoration project! I too caulked it, but it took many many layers to fill in the entire gap. And white caulk- that is definately an eye sore as the ensolite is not white and the caulk is way to bright! Next, I tried almond caulk- that was too dark. I tried painting the caulk to match the ensolite, I am usually very good at color matching but not this time. I still can not figure out EXCATLY what color that ensolite is! Then I found caulk called BISCUIT. It looked like a cross between white and almond- bought it, tried it, but it was just a fancy name for white. I then bought some paint that seemed to be right color (again) and tried just stamping it on with a sponge to cover the caulk and feather it out some so it wasn't so noticeable. That didn't work either. Then I cut a chunk of the ensolite off from under the sink area and took it to WalMArt with me to look for another paint color. Found what looked to be perfect, bought it, tried it, and had another failure. Then I thought that maybe what was such an eyesore was the texture, not just the color, so I put on a fresh thin layer of caulk and used my ensolite swatch to texture it. Nope. I have mixed texture additive to paint to try to match this stuff too- again, failure. Then I found a nice off white textured Krylon spray paint and tried that. Why is the paint NEVER the color of the cap? Failure, again. Yesterday I decided that if I could not match it, then I was going to use weatherstripping to cover the seams cause it is good and sticky! Well, with all that caulk and expiremental paint it did not stick at all!

SO.. this is what I have decided to do- I am taking a fresh ensolite swatch to Home Depot and have them color match it and make me up a quart. I am then going to mask off the seams so they are all the same consistent width and paint them. I know nothing is going to match perfectly, so I figure a nice straight, even, line is better than what I have now. If I had it to do over again, I would have caulked and painted the entire thing, but I was nervous about painting it in the beginning and now I am too lazy to remove everything and paint it! Of course now that I think about it, for all of the time I have wasted trying to match the seams, I could have emptied the entire trailer, painted it, restocked it and still had time left over!!!!
Owner of 1978 Scamp named the KRAKEN
Owner of 1987 Scamp named ANBOLINN
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Old 05-23-2006, 09:19 PM   #10
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When we bought our '82 Scamp the seam tape had yellowed and was a real eyesore. I called Scamp and ordered more seam tape. The old stuff peeled off pretty easily. The new tape is pretty sticky but sometimes it doesn't stick well enough, so I hot glued it wherever it came loose.

I did try caulking the gaps once but I didn't like the way it turned out. The ensolite is grey and the white caulking really stood out against it. I decided I liked the look of the seam tape better than the caulking.

By the way, one roll of seam tape was not enough to replace all of the old stuff.


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paint, painting

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