Wood Rot in Scamp 13 Floor. - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-21-2015, 03:15 PM   #1
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Wood Rot in Scamp 13 Floor.

I bought a 1978 Scamp 13 about two weeks ago, but was unable to do any work on it because of a bum knee.

Today I did inspect the floor and flanges and was very happy to find only one area of wood rot.

It was in the right hand side corner of the dinette area (street side).

Here are the two photos I took of the rot.

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Name:	<a title=Scamp wood rot 2 CU.jpg Views: 46 Size: 233.1 KB ID: 81575" style="margin: 2px" />

Click image for larger version

Name:	<a title=Scamp wood rot 1.jpg Views: 43 Size: 249.3 KB ID: 81576" style="margin: 2px" />

I would appreciate any and all suggestions on how to repair the rotted wood. The least work and simplest way would be best for my limited budget!

Bill
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Old 03-21-2015, 04:53 PM   #2
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Afternoon Bill!

There are a couple of ways to fix this, you can replace just the rotted section or replace the full section. Short-term, replacing the rotted section is the cheapest route but long-term it is better to replace the full section. Originally the rear floor was one piece of plywood that rests on the two rear sections of frame with the shell fiberglassed around the edges and screws through the plywood to attach the floor and shell to the frame. A full piece of plywood is much stronger than sections. I think Ian replaced a couple of sections in his 13' Boler and he has instructions on how to do it.

On our trailer the plywood is still O.K. but not great so I am going to leave the old plywood in place and cut a single new 3/4" piece, put resin on each side and put it between the old plywood and the frame then fiberglass around the edges. This will lift the trailer 3/4" higher off the frame, giving 3/4" more height in the dance floor area. I also have to do the same in the front floor area where the plywood flooring is in worse shape.

Doing this doesn't add much weight to the trailer and gives it a much stronger floor and overall strengthens the trailer. And I don't have to cut the old floor out reducing the risk of the shell collapsing.

If you do something like this then you could pick out the rotten stuff and patch.

Good luck!

Bob
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Old 03-21-2015, 05:24 PM   #3
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I would do as Bob said If you do something like this then you could pick out the rotten stuff and patch. I did this with mine pick out all the bad wood u can then I used Durham`s water putty( from lowes or most hardware stores) easy to use and very hard .After I got bad out I used old car tags screwed them to the floor from the bottom side , applied the Durham`s on the top side of the floor a little sanding and u are ready to put in your new floor , I put in peal and stick planks from lowes . hope this helps
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Old 03-21-2015, 05:48 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by bobkatr1 View Post
Afternoon Bill!

There are a couple of ways to fix this, you can replace just the rotted section or replace the full section. Short-term, replacing the rotted section is the cheapest route but long-term it is better to replace the full section. Originally the rear floor was one piece of plywood that rests on the two rear sections of frame with the shell fiberglassed around the edges and screws through the plywood to attach the floor and shell to the frame. A full piece of plywood is much stronger than sections. I think Ian replaced a couple of sections in his 13' Boler and he has instructions on how to do it.

On our trailer the plywood is still O.K. but not great so I am going to leave the old plywood in place and cut a single new 3/4" piece, put resin on each side and put it between the old plywood and the frame then fiberglass around the edges. This will lift the trailer 3/4" higher off the frame, giving 3/4" more height in the dance floor area. I also have to do the same in the front floor area where the plywood flooring is in worse shape.

Doing this doesn't add much weight to the trailer and gives it a much stronger floor and overall strengthens the trailer. And I don't have to cut the old floor out reducing the risk of the shell collapsing.

If you do something like this then you could pick out the rotten stuff and patch.

Good luck!

Bob
Thanks Bob for the suggestions.

I'm not quite clear as to whether you are going to add the new 3/4" plywood to the bottem or top of your existing floor?

Would it make any difference in overall strength whether or not the new plywood was applied on the bottom or on the top of the old floor?

Bill
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Old 03-21-2015, 05:56 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by BAMA & Pachyderm Posse View Post
I would do as Bob said If you do something like this then you could pick out the rotten stuff and patch. I did this with mine pick out all the bad wood u can then I used Durham`s water putty( from lowes or most hardware stores) easy to use and very hard .After I got bad out I used old car tags screwed them to the floor from the bottom side , applied the Durham`s on the top side of the floor a little sanding and u are ready to put in your new floor , I put in peal and stick planks from lowes . hope this helps
Hi Bama, Do you think that a large strip of 3/4" plywood screwed and epoxied to the underside of the floor, and overlapping the edge of the removed rotten wood, work as well as old car tags?

Would it then be necessary to add a new floor?

Bill
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Old 03-21-2015, 06:02 PM   #6
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Another question....do I understand correctly that the the fiberglass shell has a lower "lip" or edge that overlaps the outer edge of the plywood floor?

So any rotten floor would have to be removed from under this fiberglass edge?

Bill
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Old 03-21-2015, 06:37 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Bill Nolen View Post
Hi Bama, Do you think that a large strip of 3/4" plywood screwed and epoxied to the underside of the floor, and overlapping the edge of the removed rotten wood, work as well as old car tags?

Would it then be necessary to add a new floor?

Bill
from the photo it looks like it is under a seat if that is it i would use the putty under the bottom then on the top then if u need more reinforcement i would use a 1/4" ply cut to fit under the hole seat , look at the putty when it is dry u may need to do no more the reason not to put any thing thicker that tags under the bottom is your braces are under there and an uneven surface can collect moisture and dirt , that is why I used tags . I am sending you a privet message .
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Old 03-21-2015, 09:36 PM   #8
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Bill,

I am adding the new 3/4" plywood under the existing floor. The existing floor has no weather protection on the underside, maybe a very old, very thin varnish. Resin thinned a bit works great to seal plywood. If the old plywood is on the bottom it will just continue to rot.

I am pretty sure that the floor is fiberglassed to the shell on both the top and bottom.

If this section of plywood is rotted it is likely that there are other places. I would suggest that you take a knife or screw driver around and do some poking and prodding. Two places that are notorious for rotting out are the two pieces on either side of the door. Mine were almost powder. These two pieces are necessary for proper closure of the door.

If any parts of the dance floor are rotted they are very easy to remove and replace. Just climb underneath with a pry bar and pop them up from the angle iron, the screws will likely be rusted in place. You will need to grind or cut the old screws off level with the top of the frame. Again, coating the top and bottom of the new floor with thinned resin. Your new floors should last longer than you will every need them.

If you would like to talk, send me an email with your phone number.

Bob



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Old 03-22-2015, 03:33 AM   #9
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The general consensus is that rot occurs from the inside. A leaky rivet. A failed window seal. A hose and a helper might be a good place to start. As far as the floor is concerned, I would use the site google search feature. I'm sure there are a lot of threads on floor repair/ replacement. An afternoon of reading will give you lots of ideas. Raz
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Old 03-22-2015, 05:49 AM   #10
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Do it right! There is plenty of good advice here to help!
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Old 03-22-2015, 10:28 AM   #11
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I had similar problems with my 16" scamp and I am just now putting it back together.
In my opinion the "BEST" thing is to remove the rotten rear deck in it's entirety.
If it is in the front it is important to inspect the frame for rust and cracking.
In the rear the issue would be rust. Along with the rotten floor that means that the water was also sitting on the frame as well.
Remove the floor and wire brush the exposed frame, use rust reformer or some other treatment, prime and paint.
Then I used exterior (almost 3/4" plywood cut from the old part as best as I could as a pattern.
I fiber-glassed both top and bottom of the floor along with the edges. To get the fiberglass to conform along the edge I rounded it with a router on both sides.
I am using stainless countersunk screws and more of them than originally.
I also added reinforcement square tubing framework to the fiberglass shell from the frame so that the floor and frame are stronger and gives support to more than just the front and rear over the existing frame rails.
I hope that this helps alleviate the need for the twisted iron reinforcements from the old cabinets to the overhead cabinets.
I am modifying my 16' scamp for front bath and kitchen with twin rear beds and the bracing is at an inconvenient spot.
The end "walls" are at 6' from the rear and added stiffness from the floor reinforcement and some bracing under the beds and up the side walls should do. After all most of the ironwork has already hammered the screws loose years ago.
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Old 03-22-2015, 01:33 PM   #12
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Whew! So much good information and advice! Sadly, I have so few brain cells to process it all!

OK, I am kidding....I am very smart...almost a genius..at least in my own mind! However, my dear wife says otherwise, and so far she has never been wrong. (she reads my emails)

I do plan to probe with a ice-pick along the edges of the plywood floor...hoping not to find any soft spots. If I find any, I most likely replace the soft spot if it is small, or the whole floor if it is large, or there are more then one area. Just depends on the size of the rot.

My attention span is very short. So, I know from past unfinished and sold projects, that I should NEVER get envolved in in a total from the frame up restore project! The thought of removing the shell, rebuilding the frame, and so on...is quite an attractive thought to me. But, that will never happen!

Thanks for all the good advice!

Bill
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Old 03-22-2015, 06:58 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by redbarron55 View Post
In the rear the issue would be rust. Along with the rotten floor that means that the water was also sitting on the frame as well.
My rear rot wasn't sitting on the frame - it was solidly between the frame and not even close to any of the cross supports. Mine was ultimately caused by a belly band leak (initially I thought it was from a leaky rear window, but that was not the entire cause) - and yes, even though the belly bands are "glassed" on the inside of the seam, that doesn't make them bulletproof! Mine was a pinhole leak behind the support board for the table hardware... so water literally pooled behind that board and slowly dripped down to the floor where it is glassed onto the shell, which is where the floor was soft (and now sports a sizable hole as I was probing to see how far the damage went) and when I pulled the table hardware out, water actually started STREAMING down out of the screw holes. It was so saturated that after removing the ensolite from that area, I was able to pop that entire piece of OSB out with very little trouble - the two screws from the outside that should have been holding it in place were rusted completely away.

I've not completely fixed my rear floor yet (mainly because I haven't yet tackled replacing my leaky escape hatch - that is next on my agenda, for now I have a bucket placed to collect the water that drips from the flange so it's not contributing any more to any soggyness on the floor, but the weather has been either too cold or way too wet to tackle much over the winter), but the belly band leak was a very simple repair, and combined with the rear window seal being replaced fixed all leaks in the "back" of my trailer. I don't intend to replace the full rear deck at this point - but that plan may change as I actually get started on it (after the leaky escape hatch is fixed).

So I would recommend finding the source of any leaks/water inside the trailer before fixing the floor, or you may be repeating this process in the not too distant future. The prior owners of my trailer fixed the "soft" floor by placing a piece of pegboard over it. I wish I was kidding, but that was probably one of the worst materials they could have used - it held onto a lot of the water that made it into the camper and made my "soft spot" much bigger.
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Old 03-22-2015, 07:29 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by sarahspins View Post
My rear rot wasn't sitting on the frame - it was solidly between the frame and not even close to any of the cross supports......

So I would recommend finding the source of any leaks/water inside the trailer before fixing the floor, or you may be repeating this process in the not too distant future. The prior owners of my trailer fixed the "soft" floor by placing a piece of pegboard over it. I wish I was kidding, but that was probably one of the worst materials they could have used - it held onto a lot of the water that made it into the camper and made my "soft spot" much bigger.
That sounds like very good advice to me!

I can only try and complete the repairs on my Scamp...and leave it in better condition, with better materials used, than the prior owners did with your Scamp! That is very sad!

Bill
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