Rookie vs. 1990 Casita (Project Thread) - Page 7 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-04-2016, 07:22 PM   #85
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Name: Jonathan
Trailer: 1991 16' Casita
North Carolina
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marion View Post
Keep up the good work and thank you for sharing
Thanks for the kind words and encouragement Marion, it's very much appreciated!

Here's the run down for today... install axle? Check.



Patch the remaining holes in the shell? This one took me a while, but eventually... check. The big hole where the old propane hot water heater is what sucked up a good bit of time between getting the piece cut, and it set into place with the right contours to make it flush:



It's got a bit of a funky edge to it on the top end where the fiberglass had curled out, but filled in at least:



Install windows? Well... I fell a little short on this one for a couple reasons. First, Einstein here screwed up his math and didn't order quite enough butyl tape... oops. Second, the windows originally had only four rivets on each, and I wasn't happy with the gaps around the corners and side edges:



So in the end I added six more stainless bolts around each of the larger windows which got them nice a tight to the shell all the way around:



I even got the emergency hatch working which I figured was a good thing to do considering it's an emergency hatch! LOL!!



Tomorrow I'm hoping to work on the exterior side of all of the patches I've done (i.e: get the gaps filled with fiberglass filler) and get the main door working... which I'm thinking I might need to cut into and soak with some sort of nuclear treatment as it's showing signs of being infected with a really nasty cheese-looking fungus!



Jonathan
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Old 07-04-2016, 08:26 PM   #86
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Name: K C
Trailer: 1980 18' Sunrader Motorhome and 1971 Trails West CampMite Campster
Washington
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That is quite the biology project you have going there. Perfect for grossing out the girls at school on "weird science day"

For a scattered day you got quite a bit done. At this stage in a total rehab job there is so much to be done that there is always something to choose from if you don't feel in the mood for what your thought you were going to do that day. Remember...when the going gets tough the tough go shopping
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Old 07-05-2016, 04:48 PM   #87
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Name: Jonathan
Trailer: 1991 16' Casita
North Carolina
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Originally Posted by k corbin View Post
That is quite the biology project you have going there.
Yeah, I had today off from work again so started to explore the door a little closer - upon scraping the yeast-cheese like substance off a bunch of tiny spiders came scurrying out, so I figured I had no choice but to tear into it. I took a Dremel and cut through small, logical sections, sure enough the wood beneath the layer of fiberglass was soggy sawdust even after the door had sat out in the sun for probably 10 days:





The upper portion of the door checked out OK, but the bottom panels had obvious signs of water so I cut both them open. These had only foam in them which I figured would take no time to yank out... but wait... what's the bumpy stuff under the foam? Ah, but of course... the same damn carpet that was in the rest of the camper, only this time glued face down with fiberglass resin! Ahhhhhhhh!!



In the end I managed to get things stripped down, I coated the open areas with mold/mildew cleaner and plan on letting everything sit for a couple days to make sure it's completely dry before I start to reconstruct:



The other related project was working on the door hinges. All the pieces were bent in one location or another so I spent a good bit of time getting them all squared back up:



The original hinge pins were missing and I didn't want to go the route of a big honking bolt like the previous owner did, so I fabricated a couple out of 1/4" aluminum rod that I drilled a hole into and capped with a wide-head aluminum bolt:





Years of opening/closing the door chewed away some of the aluminum where the two pieces connect, so last step of this little project will be to fill in the 1/8th inch gaps you can see in the next picture then they should be pretty sound:



Back to work tomorrow... sigh... more updates as I make progress.

Jonathan
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Old 07-05-2016, 05:13 PM   #88
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Trailer: 2002 BigFoot 17'
SW Virginia
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Whew. The "Gift"(?) that keeps on giving. As always I'm awed by your tenacity and problem solving skills.

Walt
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Old 07-06-2016, 03:42 PM   #89
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Name: JD
Trailer: Scamp
Alabama
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If you replace the mushboard inner core with foam board and use epoxy resin (the polyester resin will eat the foam) you can save a lot of weight and eliminate the rotting wood problem.
Make a cradle the to hold the curve shape you need, glue the foam board to the outer door panel with some of the epoxy resin.
The use fiberglass cloth to layup the inner door panel.
Shape the foam to the finished contour you want for the inner door with smooth contours to fair in the fiberglass.


Sent from my SCH-I605 using Fiberglass RV mobile app
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Old 07-06-2016, 06:54 PM   #90
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Name: Jonathan
Trailer: 1991 16' Casita
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@ JD - thanks for the suggestion/tip!

@ Walt - thanks for your kind words, it really means a lot to me.

Today was just a first pass with fiberglass filler on all of the patches so nothing all that photo worthy, what I'm really dreading is the reality that I need to sand down said patches as it's the dead of summer here in NC so temperatures in the 90s and 400 percent humidity. Hmm... it's filled in and waterproof, so does it really need to look nice?? LOL!

Jonathan
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Old 07-06-2016, 09:38 PM   #91
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Name: K C
Trailer: 1980 18' Sunrader Motorhome and 1971 Trails West CampMite Campster
Washington
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Originally Posted by shaggydoink View Post
@ JD - thanks for the suggestion/tip!

@ Walt - thanks for your kind words, it really means a lot to me.

Today was just a first pass with fiberglass filler on all of the patches so nothing all that photo worthy, what I'm really dreading is the reality that I need to sand down said patches as it's the dead of summer here in NC so temperatures in the 90s and 400 percent humidity. Hmm... it's filled in and waterproof, so does it really need to look nice?? LOL!

Jonathan
set it under the sprinkler and wet sand it... be cool
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Old 07-07-2016, 12:32 AM   #92
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Name: K C
Trailer: 1980 18' Sunrader Motorhome and 1971 Trails West CampMite Campster
Washington
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low profile roof vent

A VW van was at the office here the other day. We have a space upstairs so when I looked down and saw that he had a very low profile skylight on top. Much lower than the typical RV skylight.

I think it must have been this model because it has identical hinges on it. You could call and find out exactly how tall it is.

GoWesty Camper Products - parts supplier for VW Vanagon, Eurovan, and Bus
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Old 07-07-2016, 07:02 AM   #93
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Name: Dawn
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Windows

Not to back track, but Jonathan did you insert the front or rear windows too? Those are not installed with rivets, correct? Did you find it difficult to install? Did you still use butyl tape with the seal?

Great posts, I read them daily!!
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Old 07-07-2016, 08:12 AM   #94
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Trailer: 1991 16' Casita
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@ KC - I've lost track of the amount of time I've spent exploring different vent options, this has included ones designed for cars/trucks although I haven't encountered the Westy, so thank you for sharing the link!

@ Dawn - no, the smaller windows are the two I didn't get to yet... in part due to me running out of butyl tape, and in part due to the fact that I was a little too hasty taking the one over the kitchen sink/stove apart and have yet to figure out which of the plastic pieces go where to make it work. LOL! You're correct, though, these were not secured by rivets (nor is the window on the door) although I plan to add 4 to 6 stainless bolts on each along with butyl tape so they are really snug. I'll post up a picture when they're done.

Jonathan
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Old 07-07-2016, 08:54 PM   #95
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Name: K C
Trailer: 1980 18' Sunrader Motorhome and 1971 Trails West CampMite Campster
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Originally Posted by shaggydoink View Post
@ KC - I've lost track of the amount of time I've spent exploring different vent options, this has included ones designed for cars/trucks although I haven't encountered the Westy, so thank you for sharing the link!

Jonathan
After watching the video I realized you would need to fabricate a flange to set it on. But that would not be beyond your skill level, you seem to have some "mad skills" of your own It does look to be under 2" high.
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Old 07-08-2016, 07:27 PM   #96
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Name: Jonathan
Trailer: 1991 16' Casita
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Did you still use butyl tape with the seal?
I spent most of the afternoon running around to various places as part of my effort to get the camper titled and registered (long story that I don't think I've mentioned thus far) but had a chance to get the window over the kitchen installed... as I mentioned, I ended up drilling out six holes for stainless bolts along with the butyl tape in order to end up with what I think (hope?!) will be a solid seal:



Jonathan
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Old 07-09-2016, 06:15 PM   #97
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Trailer: 1991 16' Casita
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I had all sorts of things lined up to do today and was simply dreading it due to the intense heat and humidity, so I decided to reorganize my list of purchases and advance the portable air conditioner to the top so I could use it to cool the garage:



This is ultimately what I'll be using in the camper itself, the portable was more expensive but had enough advantages over a window unit that it seemed worth it.

The primary project that ran throughout the day was putting the door back together, here are a few pictures of the various steps along the way:









In between the stages of the door I knocked out a number of other items on my list including stamping the new trailer ID on the frame and axle, installing the last two windows, patching some additional holes I discovered and getting the exterior electrical outlet put in. I also pulled the awing case off after noticing that many of the rivets that attached it to the shell were wobbly so therefore prone to leaking - the previous owner must have had the same concern, although their solution was to slather on so much silicone sealant that I had to use a hacksaw to chew threw it!





Tomorrow I'll continue to focus on items that will get the camper waterproof and therefore... useable!!

Jonathan
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Old 07-10-2016, 06:39 PM   #98
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Trailer: 1991 16' Casita
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I spent most of the day working on my Trooper and attending to some things around the house, but was able to put a few hours into the camper. I had a few items on the list to do, the first was hanging the door which theoretically was only going to take about 10 minutes... umm... oops... I forgot that the door was warped:



To correct this I followed the technique I've seen a few other people use in various scenarios, the process involves making some kerf cuts then ratcheting the door to get the proper curve:





Last step in the process is putting a layer of fiberglass cloth and resin over the cuts, before I did this I re-hung the door so I could tweak it and get it as close to flush as I could. There's still a bit of a gap, although I realized that the door frame itself had lost some of its curve, so once I get this corrected it should be a pretty good fit:



The camper still looks pretty pathetic... but at least it's pathetic with a door on it!!



Jonathan
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