Rotten floor - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-06-2012, 10:16 AM   #15
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Cat, may I refer you to this link? Perhaps you will find something of interest.

1973 LoveBug Love-in
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Old 08-06-2012, 10:18 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Cat futrell View Post
I mean are the two sides actually attached at that point {belly band} or does it function more as support. If I take off the black rubberized channel will I expose a potential leak source?
Roy, did you replace any floor in your project?
Brian BP gave a good description on bolerama:
"The two halves do have flat lips resting against each other, but they are not held together by the band or by the rivets through it. Fiberglass was applied to the inside of the joint before the wall lining was installed, to hold them together and seal the joint. The band is only decorative (to finish off the edges of the lips)"

I did not need to replace my floor. For my much smaller soft spots, I overlaid a fiberglass patch on the underside, then used "git rot" or something similar from the top.

Your leaks could be anywhere, gravity affects where the water ends up. It usually follows the seams in the Ensolite or where the Ensolite has separated from the body. You can try running a hose over various parts and watch from inside to narrow down the potential sources.
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Old 08-06-2012, 10:28 AM   #17
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Great work on that restoration Robert,
I only wish I had the time and place to do that kind of work.

We do have to stop posting at the same time though.
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Old 08-06-2012, 11:44 AM   #18
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[QUOTE=Robert Johans;325932]Cat, may I refer you to this link? Perhaps you will find something of interest.

Robert dear Robert, you are what I have been looking for. I viewed the thread and now I think I'll go shoot myself. What beautiful work. I hope that you will be kind enough to give me some tips. I don't need all of the beauty inside, at this point I just want a safe shell to camp in. Im not even sure if I can do electric right now, don't "need" that or water for now. just want to camp. I do want to raise the ground clearance because of the places that I enjoy camping.

When I got this little guy (my first camper) I just wanted to go camping. The PO represented it as sound, we did inspect but really didn't know what we were doing "duh". He may not have been aware of the issues. If you pulled on paved roads and didn't look you might not.

I mostly boondock as I have been a tent camper. My health is declining and I needed to simplify the process. lol, NOT cry out loud is more like it. I guess you have seen some of my posts "I'm in a mess" limited resources so trying to do things a little at a time. It is looking more and more like the "little" surprises I have found under the rear dinette are going to cause big problems.

Upon further inspection of the underside I have found that the plywood floor under the tongue end has mashed and broken a groove where it meets the trailer frame. And I'm pretty sure the trailer frame will need some reinforcement allong with axel replacement and mods to lift clearance. Also planning to add brakes. I anticipated the frame and axle work. Hoping for less than 1k for that. My prime destination is in the Western Carolina Mountains so thought the brakes should be done while I'm at it.

Had planned to fool around with the configuration inside, do some fiberglass repair, and eventually paint. I don't need pretty just function. Replace old screens, maybe reseat windows. This floor thing has me boggled.

As you, in your infinite wisdom on the subject, know - the Love Bug isn't very prevalent so information on construction and order of deconstruction has been limited. I feel that I must remove the shell in order to do a proper repair on the floor.

I you will help me understand these things before I get into the middle of it I will be forever grateful. Trying to count the cost and decide how much I can just live with. (for now)

1. Must I remove all of the cabinets, windows, etc to lift the shell?
2. What is the best way to lift the shell and how is it attached to the trailer?
3. Since I am cant do the the weld work myself, what is the best way to instruct the craftsman who will be doing the work. Taking it to a shop that only works on trailers, not necessarily campers, just trailers. Getting estimate before we decide.
4. Will you please pray for me!

Thank you for posting your link, I see that you get swamped with admirers, hope you can find the time for one more.

Cathy
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Old 08-06-2012, 11:56 AM   #19
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I forgot to mention that the wheel well on the galley side is buckled and cracked open to the tire, likely the cause of some of the water damage.
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Old 08-06-2012, 12:06 PM   #20
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Just realized that you already answered question 2 in your previous post. Got so excited about your experience I missed it completely till I went back to read it again.
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Old 08-06-2012, 12:52 PM   #21
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OK question #1 was a stupid question too. I realize that I must take out all of the fixtures inside to put in a new floor.

Sorry for that, sometimes I just get ahead of myself. So let me replace that question with another.

Opinions please, if I gut the shell, replace the floor, fix the frame and reattach the shell but don't reinstall the cabinets, will it be structurally sound enough to take on the road. Or are the interior components necessary to support the shell. I think I know the sad answer to this question but figured it was worth asking, in case I am wrong AGAIN!
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Old 08-06-2012, 02:30 PM   #22
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From the sound of your notes, Cathy, it seems to me that your best (but not cheapest) option is a frame-off restoration.

I can't see any good way to resolve your floor problems without getting the frame out from under. Plus, it sounds like your frame (and axle?) need some attention anyway.

Once separated from your shell, repairing/restoring your frame should be relatively easy. And your first priority. I would take it to any decent welder for professional inspection and repairs. They should also be able to install a new axle, et al, as needed.

As to the floor repair/replacement, if you can't do it yourself, find a trailer shop, or boat builder, fiberglass repair specialist, or even some local finish carpenter, and talk it through. None of these repairs are particularly complicated, but should be done conscientiously to avoid future problems.

Finally, once the floor problems are resolved, and the shell is reattached to your repaired/upgraded frame, you should be able to camp! No need to re-install the furniture components. (While it is true that the vertical cabinets, etc, help support the roof, I doubt a heavy snow-load is a problem at the moment.)
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Old 08-06-2012, 08:10 PM   #23
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Robert,

Hurray, that is encouraging news. thanks
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Old 08-12-2012, 12:29 PM   #24
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sealing the floor

Robert,

Thanks so very much for your answers. I have had the trailer inspected and it is safe. Have a friend who is going to block and rotate the axle. Must have the clearance.

The cost of a total frame off right now is not doable. Planning to do within the next year or so. We are replacing the whole rotten floor in the rear area of the cabin. May have to replace that floor again when we do the frame off but need to get camping this year.


removed the old foor, made pattern for new one, cut fiberglass lip from bottom of inside shell, but

before we start the "fun" part of fenageling that new floor into place we need to seal it. What product do you recommend? We found an inexpensive resin - but the catalyst is premeasured and not resealable. It is sold by the quart. Have no idea how much it will take to get coverage on the 4' by 8' piece of flooring but am pretty sure if any premixed remains in can it will have kicked by the time the floor is ready for a second coat.

Fiberglass is foreign to me - but don't want to invest in high grade products since it will only be a temporary fix. Do you have any suggestions?

Cathy
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Old 08-12-2012, 12:36 PM   #25
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Didn't mean that post exclusively for Robert, any input is appreciated.

Cathy
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Old 08-12-2012, 03:57 PM   #26
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Cathy, did you see this post: 1979 Scamp 16' Project maybe you can get Ryan's input for your floor project and see if the stuff he used would be appropriate for your application.

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Old 08-12-2012, 04:08 PM   #27
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If by temporary you mean only to get through the next few months, and you intend on replacing your "patch" when you do your frame-off anyway, heck, I wouldn't worry much about coating your plywood. (But if you would feel better about it, you could roll on a couple coats of polyurethane or spray the bottom side with auto undercoat...)

I think a bigger concern is how you "mate" your patch to your Fiberglas walls and your existing floor "temporarily."

The walls depend on a secure connection to the floor, but I doubt you'll want to glass it together only to tear it all apart again in the coming months. Perhaps several judiciously placed brackets of some kind can hold it all together until you're ready to rebuild.

Of course, you would not be protected from water infiltrating from below, but if you can keep out of puddles -- small and large -- happy camping!
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Old 08-12-2012, 11:26 PM   #28
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Robert, I think We will use a polyurithane to coat the plywood, however We did plan to glass that floor in. Will the fiberglass resin adhere tho the plywood if it is painted with polyurithane?
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