Floor help please - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-19-2015, 07:40 AM   #1
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Name: Leonie
Trailer: boler,Amerigo,Airstream,Thomson
Ontario
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Floor help please

I am down to lifting the plywood out of the Amerigo (henceforth known as Galileo). I would be ever grateful if any of you that have replaced the floor would chime in with hints and lessons learned. The floor seems to be stuck down. I have cut the edging fiberglass away with my oscillating tool but hesitate to go any further because I don't want to break anything. My next move would be to set the depth on my circular saw and carefully cut out sections enough to get the oscillating tool underneath to separate the FG bellypan from the ply. He will be eventually numbered with the NCC-1702/7 of the Original Star Trek Galileo shuttlecraft.
Thanks in advance
Leonie
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Old 08-19-2015, 08:08 AM   #2
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Name: Eddie
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I have done a couple of bath tub trailers with bonded floors, I now try to avoid them. If your floor is solid and bonded to the floor pan leave it alone. If you have a rotted area square up the area and remove it and replace the rotted wood with a smaller patch. There are a couple of mini hand held circular saws with micro depth adjustments which are much better than dealing with a big skill saw. I have found it is better to take the shell off the frame and place it on a flat floor for support. If the wood is solid and still bonded to the shell you can eaisly cut through the shell floor while trying to remove it.
Good luck
Eddie
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Old 08-19-2015, 10:10 AM   #3
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Name: Rich & Linda
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Indiana
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Thumbs up hope it helps

My Amerigo floor is fiberglass on the side . cute it lose thats sounds like you did that next getting it up . so it not so much work cute the wood in smaller peace with cirular saw do not cute all the way thur .use a flat front shovel and bry up .its a little stack becaus it been there for 40 year it work for me have fun happy amerrygo thats my name i pull it with Ruddy
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Old 08-19-2015, 12:12 PM   #4
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Thanks Eddie and MRClaus

The floor is pretty rotten at the front and all along the sides of all three pieces. Pretty stinky too from all the generations of mice, attracts flies, yuk, it has to come up. I have sourced densilite XP to replace it and stainless elevator bolts, it will never rot again! The oscillating saw took care of the FG edges and I think I will carefully cut almost all the way through the ply and then finish off with the oscillating saw (OC). The OC is very touch sensitive so I can feel the difference between the ply and the FG. Slimy ply is no fun, it has to completely dry first. I have also just removed the three wall-stiffening panels of Urea Formaldehyde foam and ply around the door. Ah, the sweet smell of UF foam soaked in mouse pee! I am not sure how yucky the rig is up in the ceiling, the decision is whether to take down the ceiling or just blow high pressure air in to loosen any droppings and then seal carefully and leave it be.
Leonie
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Old 08-19-2015, 12:17 PM   #5
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Mystery!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eddie Longest View Post
I have found it is better to take the shell off the frame and place it on a flat floor for support.
Eddie
How exactly is the pod attached to the frame? I can only see the two bolts at the rear that bolt thru the floor and the frame crossbar. The rest of the bolts (6) at the front don't go through framing members, only the ply and the FG.
Leonie
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Old 08-30-2015, 09:26 AM   #6
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Amerigo floor removal

I have a '74 that I am in the middle of a complete refurb on. To get the rear floor up, (Remove all the frame bolts) I used a flat bar to raise it enough at the front drop off to get a small hydraulic car jack underneath the front edge to pop it up. Raise it slowly (Be sure to have some support other than the front fiberglass under the jack) and it will pop up. The front section was another story. It was all rotted and came up in chunks. My flat bar actually broke through the bottom pan and I had to repair that. There is still a layer of plywood in some spots that just would not come up. I took a belt sander to that to get rid of it. My new flooring is now in place and I re-fiberglassed the edges. I now know why they put the fiberglass around the edges-strength! It made a huge difference between before the fiberglass and after. It is a huge amount of work, but well worth it. Good luck :-)
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Old 08-31-2015, 03:42 PM   #7
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I would be interested in pics of your progress if you have any. I'm curious as to what lies behind the paneling & wallpaper!. Thanks!
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Old 08-31-2015, 05:21 PM   #8
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The mystery behind the paneling...

My 74 had nothing behind the paneling. There is some spray foam insulation in some areas that was then coated with fiberglass resin, but I fail to understand how they decided where to put it. The bottom half was fairly uniform in coverage but the upper half, not so much. The rear upper has absolutely no insulation at all. A lot of it is seperating from the FG. I have removed as much of it as I can easily peel or remove with a spatula. The foam that is stuck in place I am leaving in place. I found some 1/4" pink owens corning flexible foam at Home Depot that I am going to insulate everything with before I put in the silver insulating bubble wrap that you see in a lot of the refurbs on this site. I live in MN and plan to use this rig for hunting, so gotta stay warm!
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Old 09-01-2015, 02:42 PM   #9
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Thanks Stuart, I figured it's pretty minimal on how their constructed to keep both weight and cost down. I just brought my FG-16 home & plan to use it a few times before I start on any repairs or upgrades. Any "behind the scenes" info will be helpful.
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Old 10-07-2015, 05:33 PM   #10
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Our "new" 1973 Amerigo has a kind of "step" right in the middle of the floor between the stove and sink. My husband wants to know what that 1 - 2" bump is for. Someone put actual hardwood flooring over the parts of the floor that aren't inside the closet or cabinets-- leaving layers of old flooring there; he's considering prying up that and getting a long single sheet of the new fiberglass-backed vinyl.
Any ideas?
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Old 10-08-2015, 07:57 AM   #11
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flooring

the step is there because of the way the trailer is constructed. It is also where they ran electric and water lines. To get the flooring up, I placed a small hydraulic jack. On the lower section and popped the flooring up in the rear section. Make sure you support the jack though. The lower front floor is an entirely different matter. I used my circular saw. I did score a shallow line in one section that I later fiberglassed over before laying the new flooring. Luckily I did not go through the floor! My floor was so rotted, it had to come out. I glued reflectix to the underside of the new flooring before I put it in, then re-fiberglassed the front section in like it was.
I have a lot of pics, I should post them...
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Old 10-08-2015, 10:09 AM   #12
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Yes, please do post pictures Stu.

We like pictures.
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Old 10-08-2015, 06:16 PM   #13
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Mr. Stu, thank you. So the little step by itself is normal. We have a lot of work to do on the trailer before we can use it for camping...the floor is the job that bothers me the most! And, yes, pictures, please!
Kai in Seattle
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Old 10-09-2015, 11:19 AM   #14
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Name: Leonie
Trailer: boler,Amerigo,Airstream,Thomson
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The bump in the night

Yup, the bump is part of the construction. I am going to make it a ramp because that will make the possibility of killing myself tripping less likely. I can still run lines under the ramp. I am also not putting in plywood but a material called densilite XP, it will never, ever, rot. Three sheets have given me enough to do the floor, the door side supports and all of the window supports. I have also just got the frame back from the welders. I had them weld in a crosspiece C channel that supports the floor from the door across. There was nothing there and the crosspieces are way too far apart IMO. I have also had them weld in a receiver where the coupler was. Now I can slide in and double pin a smaller receiver with the coupler welded on, and remove it and the chains when parked. I can also slide in a pin lock or two where the pins go. All GR III or better, so good and strong. To steal my trailer they are going to have to do some serious pre-planning. I am going to use neoprene cushioning on top of the frame because I had places where the FG skin was rubbed and damaged by the frame. Some of the hold-down tabs for the floor bolts were damaged or broken so I have new heavier duty brackets welded in. The axle is waiting to be installed as soon as the rain lets up and I have a chance to degrease and POR15 the frame. The bumper, tongue and around the wheels will be the only place I need to topcoat the POR 15 because it is not UV stable. I will put 1/2" board insulation under the floor with a nylon support ring at each elevator bolt so the insulation is not crushed by my enthusiastic tightening of elevator bolts. The back compartments under the dinette benches will be coated with truck bed coating then painted white so they will not be black holes. I have already riveted and FG'ed the belly band inside the trailer. I am installing cedar and then encasing that in FG so if a window does leak it will not soak in to wood and rot it. It is only really there for supporting the outside trim, stapling wire to and the board that supports the spare tire. It also had the support for the fridge attached. I am looking forward to the day me and my 4 friends, jack, jack, jack and jack can get the shell back on.
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