Securing a 1lb reverse camera to a FG body - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-10-2016, 01:51 PM   #1
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Name: Julian
Trailer: Jayco
British Columbia
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Securing a 1lb reverse camera to a FG body

so as the title indicates my issue is about installing a camera, the key concern being the cracking fiberglass not making a very good anchor material. the camera is 500g (1.1 lbs) on a bracket that holds it out from the motorhome about 3"s, so I haven't done the math but that weight on a 3" lever bouncing along at 55mph would probably generate pretty decent load.

what started this concern was when I removed the center running light and noticed that even the running light screws had chipped out the fg. the sealant around the edge and putty in the housing is what kept the light attached.

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inside is the rear bedroom is an upper cupboard right across the rear. I popped the upper and lower panel board trim, and center vertical piece, no problem (no big problems anyways). but the panel board (2 pce across whole width, center joined) looks like it will not lift intact. replacing the panel board inside of the cupboard would require disassembly of the cupboard. that seem excessive for a back up camera installation. I think 3m panel bonding epoxy would glue the camera mount securely to the mh, so securely I think it would eventually peal back the top fg layers and fall off.

I am thinking the most secure mounting would be to mount the camera onto a small piece of plywood (4 bolts and adhesive) cut out to shape a slightly larger than running light footprint. drill 2 bolt holes through the plywood mount that match running light holes already in fg, and have another piece of plywood on inside of wall. with the 2 bolts making a sandwich of the 2 plywood pieces on the fg and displacing the load. it would replace the center running light, and require no new holes in the fg. problem is, that requires cutting 2 holes (either side of central wall stud) in the panel board inside.

this mh will see rough roads as well, we're going to the yukon in september and last time we we're there(2012) the alaska hwy was as bad as ever. we are also more inclined to boondocking than hook up camping, so that it can mean gravel roads with washboard. that's the ultimate mounting test, and mh torture I would think.

So after all that I do have questions. am I missing the obvious here? is there a less destructive and still secure way?

thanks for your time
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Old 05-10-2016, 02:02 PM   #2
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Your good to go. I did the same.
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Old 05-10-2016, 03:51 PM   #3
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Instead of plywood, you might consider using PVC for your mounting and backer boards. They sell this as weatherproof trim boards at the big box Home Depot type stores. This is what I used. As a bonus, it's white, so blends well with the FG. From what I understand, 3M 5200 glue will form a *permanent* bond, so if you used that for the full face of your mounting block it should be as strong as the trailer shell itself. And permanent.
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Old 05-10-2016, 05:40 PM   #4
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Maybe...

I don't know if this will help but I use an automobile backup camera to see behind our Scamp. I mounted it to the inside of the Scamp's rear window with high bond strength tape. It transmits to a display on our dash. Works great. No camera weather issues.
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Old 05-10-2016, 11:07 PM   #5
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thank for the input everybody. honda I did think about mounting on the inside ledge, but I could see it getting knocked around/off during raining day horse play.

I decided to go with the sandwich technique. sclifrickson I checked out the pvc and decided to get a 1x4 piece and made my two mounting pieces. they are all drilled and set up. tomorrow I will need to drill 2 new holes in the fg, running light holes are too tight to the mount and create a space conflict between washers and mount.

tested the camera, works great. already to finish this job off tomorrow.

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Old 05-11-2016, 06:24 PM   #6
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Norm, do you know the name of the tape you used?
Thanks!
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Old 05-11-2016, 07:18 PM   #7
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Scotch exterior $15 for 100 inches on amazon. I use it for holding boxes to the inside wall and solar panels to the roof.

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Old 05-11-2016, 09:48 PM   #8
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Look fr VHB tape. It is awesome stuff.
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Old 05-12-2016, 04:51 AM   #9
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Scotch exterior is made by 3m. It's held solar panels on roof of Scamp for 5 years.

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Old 05-12-2016, 11:02 AM   #10
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You can buy VHB 3M mounting tape in small rolls in most auto parts and marine supply stores. It is not longer an exotic item, its wonders have become well known so now re-sellers are packaging it in small quantities. You can even find it in a lot of craft supply stores.
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Old 05-12-2016, 03:09 PM   #11
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3M 5200 is indeed permanent. Anything bonded with this product is likely to be destroyed if you try to take it apart.

3M 4200 is also an excellent product but material bonded with this can be taken apart without damage (maybe)

3M VHB tape ( VHB stands for very high bond) is also excellent.


For the camera application, the tape should be more than adequate.
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Old 05-12-2016, 05:29 PM   #12
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If not too far off topic.. there is always this possible option. $20 USB cam attached to a strong suction cup device, shown here mounted on the microwave door just as an example. The plan is to use a Raspberry Pi micro-computer to stream the video via WiFi, powered from the house battery via a handy USB outlet. I can watch the video on my tablet or phone. Don't have it all done yet but did have a protype working with video lag so slight you could not even detect it. I'm going to just mount the cam in the window on this weeks trip. Perhaps just the sight of it will deter the less determined tailgators.
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Old 05-12-2016, 05:34 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack L View Post
...
3M VHB tape ( VHB stands for very high bond) is also excellent.


For the camera application, the tape should be more than adequate.
But which VHB tape? 3M makes so many varieties... and having the right one for the application is rather important. See this list.
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Old 05-12-2016, 08:47 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by gordon2 View Post
But which VHB tape? 3M makes so many varieties... and having the right one for the application is rather important. See this list.
Yes, Gordon, You are correct. They do make many sizes, thicknesses and adhesives. It's very confusing. I've used some in the past, with good results but I've never used it in an application that I felt was taking the product close to the limit. The complex list appears to have many products that have overlapping uses. I know this post does not answer your question. If I had any doubt, I would use 5200. I know 3M has a very good engineering staff. If you have a specific application, you could e mail them.
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