Screw holes? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-24-2011, 09:24 PM   #1
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Name: Kevin (Ken)
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Screw holes?

I have a bunch of screw holes in my trailer that are no longer necessary. Someone put on rubber rock guards on each side of the front near the bottom, and one of those vent caps on the top. Plus, I may end up with more when I replace/remove the old awning. What is the best way to seal the holes? Stainless and possibly slightly bigger screws plus silicone? Just silicone? Something else I don't know about yet?
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Old 02-24-2011, 09:27 PM   #2
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Don't mention silicone here, it freaks them out.
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Old 02-24-2011, 09:40 PM   #3
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I found the why not silicone thread. Unfortunately, most of the stuff on the top half of my trailer is sealed with it. Is it so bad that it is really worth it to try to remove and replace it?

I actually have removed it from around some running lights, because it looked sloppily applied and was dirty. It was pretty hard, but not insanely hard. I just scraped it with a screwdriver and then had at it with a plastic brush and Goof Off afterward. On the other hand, doing every window and light would definitely not be fun.

Once removed, do I have to sand now to get butyl to stick? My trailer is old and flat looking with no appearance of any kind of shiny gel-coat to it.
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Old 02-24-2011, 09:48 PM   #4
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I don't know what to tell you, I took auto body repair way back in high school but we didn't do any fiberglass. I do remember something called kitty hair, it's like Bondo but it has fiberglass strands in it, I'm using a different version of that on mine now. and for the shine, what shine? mines a '72 nothing on it shines.
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Old 02-24-2011, 10:06 PM   #5
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The reason I mentioned the lack of shine is that there was talk about how the silicone causes problems to do with leaving a contaminant on the surface having something to do with gel coat. I thought maybe since mine is old and flat that maybe all the gel coat is worn off or something, which might change the contamination situation.
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Old 02-24-2011, 10:16 PM   #6
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I removed the stinky slinky tube off the front of my Scamp (vile looking thing) and needed to fill the four holes left by the rivets. I used this: Amazon.com: Protective Coating #025567 2OZ Marine Epoxy Putty: Home Improvement
I bought it at Lowe's. It's sandable (and paintable). Kneaded the two parts together, rolled into a sausage shape and crammed it into the holes. It's waterproof too. I suppose you could cover the plug with a rivet cap. I didn't.
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Old 02-25-2011, 01:49 AM   #7
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I use epoxy putty. Designed for fixes in low-stress spots on boat hulls and the like, it's one of those "1000 uses" products that you can pick up from most hardware store paint departments.

You use it this way: Sand the area around the repair area to remove any berm/ridge before you apply the epoxy, then wipe the area down with MEK methyl-ethyl-ketone) solvent to remove any dust or wax (USE CHEMICAL RESISTANT GLOVES). Mix a small amount of epoxy paste with a popsicle stick and dab and press it into the area to be repaired, then smooth the repair out while the epoxy is still "wet" with rubbing alcohol and a paper towel. Wait 30 minutes, then scrub any epoxy haze around the repair area off with rubbing alcohol and a scrubby sponge. Mix up and apply, and clean up after a second batch of epoxy if the first round didn't quite fill the hole, but don't wait too long after the first batch hardens or the first dab will have cured enough that a second layer of epoxy won't stick properly. The next day you can do some light sanding (if needed the alcohol wipe-down is pretty good at smoothing things out) and use gelcoat repair or paint to match the rest of the finish on your trailer.

Several people here will also suggest body working spot filler, also available at any hardware store. It is easier to use, but it cures to a rusty-red color and doesn't bond to the fiberglass resin like epoxy does. The epoxy repair cures to an off-white color that's close to the original gelcoat on my trailer and is very tough and permanent.
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Old 02-25-2011, 07:24 AM   #8
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Have to fix my door, just got the new hindge bolts this week so as soon as the temp goes up will try the putty to fill old holes and re-drill at the door.

Thanks Donna D and peterh for your help.
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Old 02-25-2011, 07:55 AM   #9
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Some good recomendations above and just to add to it as i used to use this on boat repairs where screws needed to be elimated or the hole just got stripped out..... very drillable for a new hole if needed. It comes in white (for fiberglass) and gray (for metal) be sure to get white if you go this route.
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Old 02-25-2011, 11:17 AM   #10
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[QUOTE=Donna D.;238280]I removed the stinky slinky tube off the front of my Scamp (vile looking thing) and needed to fill the four holes left by the rivets. I used this: Amazon.com: Protective Coating #025567 2OZ Marine Epoxy Putty: Home Improvement
QUOTE]

On Donna's advise a couple of years ago I used this to fill in a couple of small screw holes and it worked well. Real easy to use and no leaks so far.
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Old 02-25-2011, 01:55 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peterh View Post
I use epoxy putty...
The next day you can do some light sanding (if needed the alcohol wipe-down is pretty good at smoothing things out) and use gelcoat repair or paint to match the rest of the finish on your trailer...

FYI: Polyester gelcoat won't bond to epoxy chemically. Maybe if you rough it up a bit you can get a mechanical bond, and the patch will stick enough to the surrounding Gelcoat to hold it on.

You could clean it up and do the Gelcoat repair first and then apply the epoxy from the inside. The epoxy WILL stick to gelcoat and fiberglass quite nicely.

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Old 02-25-2011, 02:25 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Borden View Post
Have to fix my door, just got the new hindge bolts this week so as soon as the temp goes up will try the putty to fill old holes and re-drill at the door.

Thanks Donna D and peterh for your help.
Bordon, there are two things that are notorious for rusting on a Scamp (at least), the gravel shield hardware and the bolts for the door. If you can and before you mount the door, replace the long bolts and nuts with stainless steel. You've basically paid good money for a brass ball and spring, but I don't think you'd regret replacing the other parts with SS.
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Old 02-25-2011, 02:57 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pindraak View Post
My trailer is old and flat looking with no appearance of any kind of shiny gel-coat to it.
It most likely still has the gel-coat but its oxidized. I've had good results with the 3M products to make it shine again.
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Old 02-25-2011, 08:34 PM   #14
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If you are looking for a fast and easy way to cover open screw holes, you can get the plastic snap caps like Scamp uses to cover their rivets. SNAP-CAPS Screw Covers. You can either rivet through the base and snap the cap over it to cover or put the old screw back in and snap the cap over it. It is alot easier than epoxy or bondo and no paint to match up with the fiberglass. They are available at any rv dealer that sell parts or on line.

I had to use one when I accidently sent a drill bit through the exterior fiberglass while installing the curtain rod brackets on a previous Scamp I had.
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