what have I done.....I need guidance!!! WNY area - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-24-2008, 09:51 AM   #15
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Laurie . . . You are an inspiration to us all. I am fortunate enough to be able to do just about anything with my hands. There are very few things that I cannot take on. So, I kinda take it for granted. My hat is off to you as you take this project on. Keep up the effort. We are all behind you.
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Old 05-24-2008, 10:53 AM   #16
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Laurie,

I just finished replacing my front and rear Scamp windows. You have to have a special tool for installing that is very difficult to find but inexpensive. Some here do it without the tool, but I wouldn't recommend that path. It takes a minimum of two people to get the window in the gasket which takes about 45-minutes to an hour and three shirt changes. I'd rather rassle a Bear.
Then it takes quite a bit of patience and discovery learning how to use the locking tool to install the lockstrip. My first window took four hours and the second one 1.5 hours so you do learn how to do it although it is not a skill I'm that happy I now know.

I'd follow Donna's advice and get the plexi from Scamp. Right size and material for the opening. Only downside was UPS sent my windows on the train which derailed in KS and they burned up, so I had a slight delay.

Bottom line having done the windows I'd recommend that you only tackle them yourself (with help) if you have an extreme stubborn streak and are a glutton for punishment.
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Old 05-27-2008, 08:26 AM   #17
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Thanks Pat for the kind words. I really could've used some inspiration over the weekend! A friend and I took everything out, wiring included and I took up the new pergo floor that the prior owner just put in. Luckily I did, because I found two spots of rot where one of the water tanks was (that was already gone when I got it). I specifically asked the guy if the floor was solid and if there were any problems with it and he said no. When I looked at it, it was a muddy mess due to a downpoor, and I didn't look at all points underneath. I know I am too trusting, but wanted to follow a little dream of going camping again anyway?

Well, now I have to rip out the floor, and it looks like the plywood is just screwed right into the frame. I did see one kind of fastener on the fiberglass that connected to the plywood, but it just broke off due to the rot. I'm very afraid of breaking the fiberglass where it is attached to the plywood around the curve of the trailer. Any proper way to do that and not create more damage? Also the plywood looks like it is in 3 sections. Does that sound normal? The other peices look fine (still old though being a 1977), but should I just rip all of it out and start over? I'll attach a pic.

Thanks Greg for your advice on the windows. When I finally get to them I will have them put in. I do seem to be a gluten for punishment; but I am becoming less stubborn!! (or is it less stupid?...we'll decide on that one after I get this project done...hope I'm not too old to enjoy it by then!).
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Old 05-27-2008, 09:24 AM   #18
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Laurie, that looks like it's in a spot that you wouldn't normally find unless you gutted the trailer! Most owners wouldn't know they had floor rot in those areas, and you probably wouldn't have found it without checking under the furniture with the "ice pick" method. The most common area for floor rot is under the entry at the door. Frankly, in a 1977 trailer, assuming there are spots like yours is a safe bet. The only way I wouldn't assume that is if the trailer was a one-owner and either stored inside all it's life or was a desert trailer.

Anyway, yes the floor is in three sections. Unless you're planning on doing a complete frame-off, or there are larger areas than just what you show, I'd suggest just cutting out the bad area and section a new piece in there. There really isn't any reason to do more work than necessary.

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Old 05-27-2008, 10:49 AM   #19
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Hi Roger, the other owner knew about the rot because he gutted it (except for the wiring) and put the pergo flooring in. I bought it from him without it being put back together (just all cabinets put back in not attached.) He had the fiberglass bed peices stacked up in the back, so I couldn't see the corners. Bottom line...he knew it was rotted. Best guess is it became too much for him. That's fine, but he didn't need to lie about it. Someone else would have bought it if not me.

I have been searching the forum for floor replacement how to's and just stumbled on using CPES or Git-rot. Since these areas are relatively small, would that work? Honestly, I really don't think I could handle a total strip off and redo with no help. I'm getting exhausted just researching all this! I would love to do this stuff with someone helping, but by myself, it is so frustrating it makes me get a migraine thinking about it. I really didn't know it would be so much work. he said all it needed was to be put back together.

My thought was to get into the rot with this CPES stuff and then putting a coating underneath, then putting a 1/4 of some kind of wood inside on the existing floor to add strength. I plan on building a frame to make a permanent bed high enough to add some storage underneath. So, at least this area is not going to be walked on. Thought the easier fix may work.

As far as the entry door goes, there are problems there too. I need to add something to strengthen that area and there is a gap between the floor and the closet where it already rotted and the metal rotted as well. Wish it were totally gutted (all fiberglass taken out..closet, stove area, bunks, etc), so I could have seen all these problems before I purchased it. I have learned many lessons with this!! I guess that's what life's all about!

There also is rot where the wood is where the belly band is. Once I took the front bunk out I found that too. The camper looks better than it sounds, I think it still has hope.

Thanks for any thoughts on this. I'm done venting and want to jump in and have some fun personalizing it!
~Laurie

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Old 05-27-2008, 09:55 PM   #20
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Quote:
just stumbled on using CPES or Git-rot. Since these areas are relatively small, would that work?

My thought was to get into the rot with this CPES stuff and then putting a coating underneath, then putting a 1/4 of some kind of wood inside on the existing floor to add strength.

As far as the entry door goes, there are problems there too. I need to add something to strengthen that area and there is a gap between the floor and the closet where it already rotted and the metal rotted as well. Wish it were totally gutted (all fiberglass taken out..closet, stove area, bunks, etc),


There also is rot where the wood is where the belly band is. Once I took the front bunk out I found that too. The camper looks better than it sounds, I think it still has hope.
Hi Laurie, sound 2 me like you have 3 problems.

Small spot for "Git Rot", the stuff is expensive and from my experience will only fill the volume of the liquid. The soft wood is really spongy, almost empty. So if it is a really small spot it works well. Larger spot, depending on where it is, you can cut out a section, bevel the edges with a router and put a patch in.

For the door entry, people have done a cut and patch. i.e cut out the square to about the edge of the closet and put a new piece in. The lower floor is a lot easier replacement than the ends on some trailers. If it is like mine, the whole thing drops down and sits on a metal lip, held in place with a few screws.

If you are that close to being gutted you might find it easier to remove the last two cabinets and go from there
The wood under the window => I got a piece of 1x4 and shaped it to the curve with a saw and plane. Chiseled out the old one, well it was so soft it was more like scraping. Roughend up the edge where the new wood and the old glass meet, added some FG resin with a bit of glass fibers and clamped it onto the lip. finished it off with a few flat head screws from underneath for good measure.

Roy
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Old 05-27-2008, 10:36 PM   #21
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Hi, Laurie!
I'm a real do it yourself person, too. It's fun and very satisfying to tackle these projects and know it's done right. That said, is it possible to make a list of improvements that are feasible to do over a period of say three years? It is always good to accomplish improvements but it's equally important to enjoy the improvements.

Have you thought about bartering with someone who could help with the project in exchange for a skill you have? Craigslist has this on it's website and every once in awhile you'll see carpenters, mechanics, electricians offering services in exchange for other services or goods. It may be worthwhile posting your offer of talents for someone else's. The other possibilty would be to offer the use of the camper for a set number of days or weekends in exchange for help. Of course, you would need to be able to trust this person with your camper, too.

You are surely on the right path and there's no doubt that you are going to have a really great camper! Keep asking the questions and enjoy the process!
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Old 05-28-2008, 06:57 AM   #22
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Thanks Roy, I ordered the CPES along with the wood filler they sell. A bit more expensive than I would've liked to spend, but, if it works, I jumped over major hurdle (for now). Maybe over the winter in Florida I can dig deeper and rip out and replace if necessary. At least get it put back together, use it, and get it road ready for the long trip down in November. I'm going shopping for a fiberglass kit today and wiring for 12v and 110 electricity. I will wait on the back bed and other changes to the interior.

Gigi, great idea about Craigslist. I'll definately keep that in mind. I've done some projects at home in FL, but, I'm generally not the "just do it person." Once I feel confident enough to jump in, usually it goes well. But with some of this stuff (mostly fiberglass), I really get overwhelmed. It definately will be a work in progress and will take a few years to get "pretty". I just needed to get as much done as possible before I start working full time (just got up here 2 1/2 weeks ago and bought the scamp same week).

I'll post some pics this weekend of the "fix"! Keep your fingers crossed!
~Laurie




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