Well we’re finally starting to put the Boler
back together after ending up stripping it right down to fibreglass. One thing we have done is replace the (poor quality) 14” roof vents with 16 7/8” deck hatches for a sailboat. As an aside, we found that Victory Marine in Vancouver has pretty much everything for a Boler
restoration. We’ve been switching everything to stainless steel, and because our Bolers are basically more like boats than RVs, the marine shops are the places to go.
Anyways, we cut the holes larger in the ceiling and dropped the hatch frames in. We’ll be through-bolting with stainless 10-24 pan head machine screws and using either 3/4” mahogany plywood, aluminum, or if our budget allows, stainless steel as a backing plate on the inside. I’m thinking about making one frame for both hatches with a stringer along the ceiling centre that should add some rigidity to the fibreglass ceiling and to the hatch frames themselves.
Another thing we’ve done is remove the rivets that hold the cabinet brackets to the fibreglass. We’ve instead through bolted with stainless 10-32 machine screws and used PL Premium to bond the bracket and the nuts to the fibreglass. So, they won’t leak!!! The idea is that the screws can be taken out periodically and caulked then threaded back into the nut on the inside, which will be behind the liner and inaccessible. The weight/force of the cabinets will be taken by the PL Premium though, not the screw, which should distribute the forces over more area and help prevent cracking the gelcoat and stressing the fibreglass. I’ll take some photos and share, although in the first photo you can see the PL on the nuts which we used to fasten the fridge
vent frame. Doubled up the number of bolts on that frame to get a good seal. Doubled up the bolts on the hatch frames too so now they’re at 3” spacing.
I’ll keep posting as the resto continues. Just started installing new interior foam backed liner today. Fun stuff.
Thoughts, questions, comments always welcome!