It's not a story that is of great value, but just what I found when I started to replace the butyl tape on my 1978 Scamp
13' two side window's.
One window had been replaced in prior years...the clue being that window was black! I elected to start the replacement with the black window...because it was the window in the shade, and closest to my garage where my tools were kept!
It took about 5-10-minutes to drill out the 26 rivets, and remove the window. It took only one look for me to see that a previous owner (PO) had installed the window with clear Rubber Silicone. No butyl tape, just Rubber Silicone (RS).
Some three hours later I had removed the remains of the RS from the window frame, and off the side of the Scamp
. My main tool of attack was a wire brush installed in a electric drill, plus a metal scraper, a small wood working chisel, and lots of paint
thinner! Oh yes, there was a hammer that came into use a time or two!
Now, I won't belittle the use of RS by the PO because i don't know the circumstances he was working under. Obviously he had little experiance in using RS as a sealing gasket, or he would have never re-installed the window using rivets. For RS to seal a gap between a fiberglass shell and a window frame, the RS can't be compressed in total, but must be compressed in two stages. With rivets, that is not possible.
The second window was an original window, and the removal took about the same 5-10 mintes. I believe that this window hadn't been removed in the past 37 years because the condition of remains of the butyl tape. The remains were nothing but many flaking strips of harden matter.
However, the difference in cleaning the shell and window frame was like night and day! It took me perhaps, at most, 10 minutes to clean both the frame and shell, and have the window back into the opening. Old butyl tape is so easy to remove!
One thing that I learned when using the best quality (white) butyl tape i could buy from a local RV dealer, was to keep the tape in the refrigerator
until I was ready to apply the tape to the metal window flange. Much easier to work with when cool.
After much pondering, i decided to add two wooden frames in the insides of the window openings, and attach the windows
to the wood frames using metal screws., and not use rivets. I believe using screws gives me much more control in the compression of the butyl tape.
My plan is to seal off all the existing leaks
, and then come back and hopefully improve on any prior work. In the case of the windows
, that would be remove the screws, and use SS nuts and bolts to hold the windows