Our 1971 13' Boler mods - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV
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Old 04-28-2015, 08:00 PM   #21
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It;s all about inertia and "G" forces when you go over bumps. That A/C is bouncing up and down and can crack a molded fiberglass roof from flexing if it's not designed to support the weight and absorb the extra forces.

The 4X number came from Winnebago a few year back. Seems pretty good with a bit of margin. As mentioned, the mfg had to add stamped steel ribs to the molded fiberglass Sunrader mini motorhomes to support the ac's after about 6 years of cracked roofs from owner added roof ac's.

Scamp also added a reinforced section to roofs to support a/c. I think it was called the "A/C Ready" option.



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Old 04-28-2015, 08:03 PM   #22
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The weight you are adding is incredible, I would not consider adding that weight as I am sure the body and/or the frame will not handle it. Remember the stock fiberglass body is only 1/8" think, that is how thick your fiberglass shower in home is, would you place a 75 lb load on top of it and bounce down the road? Same with the stock frame, it is only 1/16" thick add a concentrated load of 300 lbs between the hitch point and the wheels is asking for it to fail.

These trailers were designed to be light and to that point are minimalistic, they are not designed to handle all the luxuries of home without substantial modifications to the frame and body.
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Old 05-03-2015, 09:54 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
It;s all about inertia and "G" forces when you go over bumps. That A/C is bouncing up and down and can crack a molded fiberglass roof from flexing if it's not designed to support the weight and absorb the extra forces.

The 4X number came from Winnebago a few year back. Seems pretty good with a bit of margin. As mentioned, the mfg had to add stamped steel ribs to the molded fiberglass Sunrader mini motorhomes to support the ac's after about 6 years of cracked roofs from owner added roof ac's.

Scamp also added a reinforced section to roofs to support a/c. I think it was called the "A/C Ready" option.
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Originally Posted by Ian G. View Post
The weight you are adding is incredible, I would not consider adding that weight as I am sure the body and/or the frame will not handle it. Remember the stock fiberglass body is only 1/8" think, that is how thick your fiberglass shower in home is, would you place a 75 lb load on top of it and bounce down the road? Same with the stock frame, it is only 1/16" thick add a concentrated load of 300 lbs between the hitch point and the wheels is asking for it to fail.

These trailers were designed to be light and to that point are minimalistic, they are not designed to handle all the luxuries of home without substantial modifications to the frame and body.
Okay guys, so after a lot of consideration as to beefing up support of the roof to hold the Dometic a/c unit, I believe it can be done with a frame on the inside of the roof with vertical supports from 4 to 6 points from the floor...however, I have decided againt going in this direction because we want to complete the project so we can camp in it this summer season...so we got a "mini" 5000 btu a/c unit to mount in the closet area along with the refrigerator...now I am trying to figure out the best way to vent and drain the a/c unit...first thought was to share a vent for both applicances but after a nice conversation with Paul Neumeister I decided to do separate vents for each appliance...He was very helpful and informative and very willing to offer his help over the phone with a number of questions I had...but I could still use some suggestions on condensation drainage for the a/c unit, and should I do a drain for any condensation from the refrigerator coil/compressor?

Now, as we have been working on the Boler body with fiberglass repairs and preparation for painting, I decided to lift the body off the frame to make it easier to sand the area around the rear bumper and front tongue as well as fiberglass some cracks behind the rear bumper...after reading some post here and blogs including Ian G's, I started removing screws and bolts. By the way Ian, my frame only had 2 bolts in the front area, everything else was screws, locations were the same, but more than 16, and a few rivets of the curb side glass fender to the frame underneath the plywood...I am thinking my Boler may have been made in the US but not completely sure...anyway while removing screws and wood chiseling the wood around the ones rust welded to the frame I discovered hided wood rot in the dinette floor area...this was surprising to me as it was undetectable from below the trailer or above due to the glassed in areas of the wood along with multiple layers of thick latex paint...as of right now it appears the rot is mostly around the screws but once the frame was out from underneath the floor the floor really felt soft so I suspect there may be more hidden rot, so any way I am glad we did this as now we are going to replace all the floor wood and completely sand & paint the entire frame...surprisingly the frame is in excellent condition for its age, no cracks or distortion just 2 places of sheet metal rust out around the closet area that i will replace with 11 gauge...

Okay, so here is where I can use some advise and insight - replacing the dinette floor and the upper front floor...all of this is glassed in all the way around the frame...my thought was to sharpie mark a line all the way around the body at the floor line as a reference, then dremel the old wood out at the body and use as a template to cut the new stuff then fiberglass in the new to the reference line...sounds easy enough, but should I do this with the frame under the body or not? My thoughts were to do it with the frame in place and do the front first, then do the back dinette after re-glassing in the front so the frame can support at least half the body at a time...any suggestions?
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Old 05-05-2015, 07:04 AM   #24
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Don't know anything about floors, not yet anyway. There's a good post about ac unit in the closet. They used a paint tray to catch the condensate. Search for ac in the mods thread and you will see it.

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Old 05-05-2015, 01:22 PM   #25
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Don't know anything about floors, not yet anyway. There's a good post about ac unit in the closet. They used a paint tray to catch the condensate. Search for ac in the mods thread and you will see it.

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Thanks for the reply, I will have to check out the a/c mod, good idea using a paint tray...
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Old 05-18-2015, 12:58 AM   #26
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Been so busy working on the Boler I havent had much time to update...well after finding some rot in the upper floors when removing the body from the frame to prep for paint we decided to replace them. This was a chore. So after careful consideration & study of the upper floors & their attachment to the fiberglass body & frame, I carefully began to cut the top layer of fiberglass using an oscillating Dremel & flush cut bit for wood/metal (couldnt find a blade meant for fiberglass)...I left the fiberglass on the underside of the wood untouched and after cutting the top side free I carefully pryed & pulled the upper floors free from the fiberglass underneath. This gave me a lip to lay the new plywood floor down on. I did have to use a wood chisel & hammer to remove some of the wood left stuck to the fiberglass & it took a considerable amount of time. Also I had to cut the dinette floor in to sections with a jig saw to remove it. I used the old pieces as my pattern to cut the new & it went together pretty nicely. While the body was off I wire brushed, sanded & flapper disc the frame, welded in some new 11 gauge to replace some rusted out metal under the closet area, replaced the wood between the frame & door (rotted also), primed & painted the frame (forgot to take pictures of the frame work)...frame was in remarkable good condition. When I put the body back on the frame I marked up my new frame paint a little so I gotta touch that up. The new wood got a coating of plasti dip spray to the underside before installing. Getting the new floor in and the body in the right position on the frame for the wood to fit correctly took some time. At first I thought I cut the wood wrong, but after trial & error I realized one side of the fiberglass body needed to shift towards the tongue slightly & then it all fit nicely...I filled in a few gaps between the wood & body like it was with what came out (had to grind all that away, what a pain)...almost finished with all the fiberglass & filler work, hope to start priming it on Monday or Tuesday...Oh, and the wood inside the door was completely rotten, had to cut through the inside layer of fiberglass to remove all the wood (what was left of it from water damage & what may have been termite damage....so now with the doors window removed I have it clamped into place and with the new wood floors & was able to fix the poor fit of the door with adjustments to the body to frame fit around the door....Now I just got to glass in some new wood to the door carefully making sure the contour matches the door frame. Still dont have the sagging spot fixed yet, still trying to determine the best fix for that which I think i going to be glass in ribs like I had originally planned just not as thick since we are not going to put the roof top ac back, instead we are going with the 5000 btu mini window system inside the closet. I picked up the drain tube for that today at Lowes as well as the side vents for the a/c & refrigerator - I am using soffit vents $1.93 each vs. $55 for a Dometic vented access door....also got the 1/2" Styrofoam 4x8 panels for $7.98 (thats about half the cost of Reflectix)...& a gallon of contact cement for what 2 cans of the 3M 77 spray would cost me...I will try to get some pictures of the floor work, door rebuild, completed body work & interior work as we progress...Oh, and the water pump & hengs roof vent w/fan came in yesterday, now just waiting on the city water/tank fill fixture, water heater and my jalousie window hinges...

We planned on fixing this fbrv up when we got it but I wasnt looking to do a complete restoration but it has turned into just that with a tremendous amount of labor...but when its done I think it will be better than anything I could buy brand new from the Scamp factory...I would like to have it campable by this coming weekend even if it is not a 100% completed project but not sure if that is gonna happen or not...oh well, got to get some sleep
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Old 06-02-2015, 08:55 PM   #27
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Nice Thread John. I can see you have been working like crazy on your Boler but I agree, it should be better than new, it will be exactly as you want it! I share your pain about it being a bigger project than you had planned though. It is a slippery slope, one thing leads to the next and before you know it everything is apart and, well... it's going to take time to pit it back together.
I can't wait to see how it looks. Did you paint it yet?
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Old 06-03-2015, 05:30 AM   #28
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Can you post any photos of the floor construction?
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Old 06-03-2015, 06:32 AM   #29
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Nice Thread John. I can see you have been working like crazy on your Boler but I agree, it should be better than new, it will be exactly as you want it! I share your pain about it being a bigger project than you had planned though. It is a slippery slope, one thing leads to the next and before you know it everything is apart and, well... it's going to take time to pit it back together.
I can't wait to see how it looks. Did you paint it yet?
No not yet I still have a few rivet holes to patch/fill and the weather here hasn't been too cooperative with afternoon storms...needless to say this will be painted outdoors. I hope to begin priming today or tomorrow if the weather will allow.
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Old 06-03-2015, 07:39 AM   #30
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Can you post any photos of the floor construction?
Okay, here are some pictures showing the rotted floor being removed and replaced (you can see the square holes where I tried to cut the rot out to patch before decided to totally replace). There was a considerable amount of rotted floor wood on the upper floor (dinette area), under where the original kitchen sink/stove was, front floor under bunks and around the closet. I carefully cut using a dremel oscillating tool and a plunge cut blade from the top of the floor along the shell just cutting through where the top of the floor was glass in, making sure that I did not cut through where the floor was glassed in to the body from the under side of the floor ( ***See reasons why in last paragraph below***) After that was done and I had the floor free from all the sheet metal screws to the frame (and 1 set of 4" bolts under the front bunk area) I carefully pulled and pried the wood free from the glass underneath. My plan was to leave all the glass underneath in tack but I ended up having to cut the wood around the floor from about 2 to 3" in from the body edge as there was too much glass holding the floors in making it very difficult to remove. The rear floor also had to be cut into several pieces for me to remove it. It still left me enough though for a good lip all the way around for the new floor to sit on. I made reference marks on the frame & body with a sharpie & pencil as to where the corners of the old floor were. Then I used the old floor as my template to cut the new floor as you can see in the pictures. There was a good bit of filler between the rounded edges of the wood and the body that had to be removed for the new floor to fit and it was not as perfect of a fit as I would like but after glassing in it turned out pretty good I think. I think I may have cut the front floor off slightly as the front body sits slightly to the left from where it originally was to make the floor fit correctly to the frame inside the door.

Important note regarding floor removal: When removing/replacing the upper floors you must absolutely fiberglass them back to the shell/body all the way around the body with a minimum of 3 layers of fiberglass mat (do not use cloth) and bolt/screw the floor to the frame. If you bolt in the floor to the frame without glassing it in to the body, the body will just be sitting on the frame and could result in a catastrophic failure when pulled down the road.

FROM ABOVE REGARDING GLASS EDGE/LIP ON BOTTOM OF FLOOR: The reason for this is that even if the body is sitting on the frame when the new floor goes in, without the lip for reference the body could flex in the middle allowing the middle area of the body to not line up properly. This could cause major fit problems especially around your wheel wells and the door. When removing the floor from a Boler, Scamp, etc. ALWAYS remember to check the clearance of the tires to the front, back and inside of the wheel wells before permanently attaching the new floor. Luckily I discovered this before I glassed it in and had to used wood to shim between the wheel well and tires so the tires would not rub and keep the wheel wells vertically straight without flexing. There was evidence of some previous rubbing/marks/cracks on the drivers side wheel well maybe from the wrong size tire at one point or maybe a blowout.
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Old 06-03-2015, 08:03 AM   #31
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Wow, that floor replacement is a huge undertaking. I am totally impressed. you'll be able to host dance parties in your boler when you are done.
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Old 06-03-2015, 08:14 AM   #32
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Now for the last week or so in between glassing & filling & sanding the body prepping for primer & paint, I have been addressing our door. When we removed it I thought it seemed excessively heavy for a fiberglass door and after looking at some other posts of door rebuilds I decided to cut into it after discovering rot when we removed the door window. After cutting the entire door apart we discovered ALL the wood in the door was completely rotten and filled with water. I removed all the crud from within and grinded down to good fiberglass. My first attempt was to rebuild using plywood slats I cut from leftover scraps from the new floor. Using turnbuckles and eyes hooks and coat hanger wire, I clamped the door to the frame to get the curve, then removed and carefully place the wood slats in using Bondo filler. After that cured the door was just as heavy or heavier then before at nearly 40 pounds. Not to mention that the turn buckles didn't hold the shape correctly when I laid the door flat to the door didn't fit in the middle (to much curve).

Okay, 2nd attempt: I removed the wood slats & re-grinded the door to remove all the filler. Then with my wife's help I traced the door frame onto a sheet of cardboard for a template. Did one for the left & right side. Then I used 1" square tubing mild weldable steel and bent 2 supports to match the curve of the door/template. I didn't have a fancy bender so I improvised using a steel wheeled caster rated for 1000 pounds with enough clearance for the 1" square tubing to fit into. The steel caster cost me $12 at Northern tool. Bolted to a heavy sturdy steel table made the perfect bender. Then I welded it up with some square tubing cross members & screwed it to the fiberglass door. Fit was off, so I cut it back apart, tweek my bends a little. Then I clamped the door to the frame at the top and bottom to get "the perfect fit" and then I screwed only the curved frame pieces to the inside of the door. Then using my trusty square and some heavy magnets I welded the 3 cross members in place and walah! The door and frame now fit perfectly. I removed it from the door frame, unscrewed the frame from the door and using a 2 part permanent epoxy for metal & fiberglass bonded the frame to the door with screws back in until it cured. After it cured I removed the screws & check the fit & it was perfect. Next I filled the door with 1" foam board insulation, fiberglassed over the window and now I just have to do some finishing work (bondo filler & sanding) to the door before prime & paint.

Now the door is much lighter and stronger and should eliminate any possibility of poor fit in the future. The door now weighs in at about 25 pounds with the steel frame.
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Old 06-03-2015, 08:17 AM   #33
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Wow, that floor replacement is a huge undertaking. I am totally impressed. you'll be able to host dance parties in your boler when you are done.
Yes it was a huge undertaking, so was the door (next post), no wait the whole project lol...And yes it is sturdy enough now that you can dance on it...
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Old 06-22-2015, 12:42 AM   #34
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Okay so I have been making some progress on the interior. Cutting the compound curves has proved to be a real challenge but I am getting it done slow but sure...this weekend I finished up the build out of the new front bath, bunks and the cabinet to replace the closet. The bath walls & cabinet are constructed out of 3/4" plywood for the purpose of adding structural support to the roof. The bath walls and both sides of the cabinet are/will be glassed to the body. The bunk turned 90 degrees will function as bunks or couch but we won't be adding the side dinette functionality. I may make that mod in the future but I don't think there will be enough foot room under the table....

For the bathroom the main wall was cut from 1 4x8 piece with a a vertical 1x2 flushed to the front from floor to ceiling to closed the open end. Then I made a 1x2 frame inside the opening offset to the outside (flush with inside of bath wall) for the door. We went with an accordion type door that I picked up at Lowe's for $16 on clearance. I am trimming the bottom of the door to fit our opening of about 50" tall but will have the full width of 36" and it won't be in the way when open and will allow easy access for removing the porta pottie. The left side of the bath has a half wall tied into the 1/3 rd horizontal portion of the top bunk (glassed in as well) with another vertical portion above that offset about 4" to allow room for our instant hot water heater to be mounted and to add structural support to that portion of the top bunk. The front window will be entirely inside the bath room so I don't have to worry about sealing the bath wall up the middle of the window.

The cabinet to replace the closet holds the refrigerator nicely and has room for storage below and room above for either a cooktop or toaster oven and cabinet or a window a/c but not both. I am still on the fence about the roof top a/c vs the window unit. If I go with the window unit I have 2 places I can put it, above the fridge or under one of the rear benches. Either location presents its own problems with venting and condensation drainage. The roof top a/c would be so much easier if I knew a guaranteed way of supporting the roof to hold the weight.

I also made a platform for our vent out of 3 layers of 3/4" plywood to elevate the roof vent so the crank handle doesn't hang below the roof line. I was worried that we (I) would hit my head on it and break it. Now I just have to epoxy it to the roof & glass it in, just got to decide whether it is going where the a/c was or a new whole in front of the a/c.

I am toying with the idea of making a platform out of 3/4" plywood for the a/c but instead of making it completely solid I thought about cutting out squares in it to keep the weight down and so it is all 1 piece but has a complete frame and cross members in both directions and support directly around the a/c unit itself. I think this would work and add enough rigidity to support the a/c without sagging the roof. We will see.

I also got the drain for the shower worked out. I used small diameter PVC pipe with fittings & 90 degree elbow so the shower will drain down and away to the back side of the trailer where it can hook to our portable grey water tank or even to a sewer connection if available. The pvc pipe is designed to be removable when pulling the trailer so to prevent damage to it.

I also scored some really nice barn wood looking laminate at Lowe's for $5/box on clearance...should go nicely with the wood work which we plan to stain and/or polyurathane

I would love some input from you guys on what you think so far...
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Old 06-22-2015, 08:00 AM   #35
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Today I will be making a trip to All Rite Custom Manufacturing in Lithonia Georgia with my jalousie windows to buy all the necessary seals to rebuild them. I stopped by there Friday after my new favorite RV store Crown RV (much better than Camping World for parts if you are refurbishing/restoring and RV) in Conyers Georgia referred me to them. The guy took me into the shop to get a couple sample pieces of Trim-Lok for my door and their warehouse is huge, with a very impressive selection of spools of seals (my guess is around 100 or more). They had various sample in their lobby of custom & stock entrance doors, slider and crank out windows, hatches, vents, rv ladders, screen doors too. He said they will custom make almost anything. Very helpful guy. He gave me a free catalog, very impressed.
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Old 06-22-2015, 08:09 PM   #36
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Awesome job so far. I really like the idea of moving the front bunk to the side. I showed my wife and she wants me to do that to our Boler. I truly can't wait to see photos of your Boler when it's all done.


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Old 07-06-2015, 09:17 PM   #37
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After many rounds of filler & sanding I finally got some primer on today...I started out with my Cambell Hausfeld sprayer (first time using one) and it seemed to spray okay but not doing this before I felt a might get it too thick or too thin in places, and the Majic paint is supposed to be thin even coats...so I switched to the roll and tip method. I was using 2" chip brushes and tipping at 90 degrees and used a foam roller but the tipping left visible bristle marks that were not flattening out (even with reducer added to thin it out) so I just rolled it on...I am thinking now that maybe you only roll & tip the top coats? Anyway, I think it may need some light wet sanding with 400 grit before the next coat to get rid of some roller marks...any way here are some pics that were actually taken right at dark but the camera brightened them up a lot so the real light streak that looks like I missed a spot is actually the reflection of a street light...one question I do have is it normal for filler areas to show through primer? I think it will cover up with pending coats but just wondered...hopefully this week I will finish up the paint, get the windows rebuilt/resealed and re-installed along with the new vent and some stain on the inside woodwork...
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Old 07-07-2015, 05:58 AM   #38
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Looking great Johnny M. You've given me some good ideas and encouragement to stick with my project. Keep it up and keep the pics coming, especially of the interior. I can only hope to get my outside looking as good as yours does with just the primer.
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Old 07-07-2015, 07:47 AM   #39
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Looking great Johnny M. You've given me some good ideas and encouragement to stick with my project. Keep it up and keep the pics coming, especially of the interior. I can only hope to get my outside looking as good as yours does with just the primer.
Thanks Mike, I looked at your Wisp remodel, it is coming along, you will get there...also, you might try some soft scrub on the shell, we did when we first got our boler and it clean up nicely...works well on the ensolite interior also...
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Old 07-09-2015, 10:43 AM   #40
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Nice Work!

We are just getting into our "Luxury Tent Project". The floors of our 83 Scamp need to be replaced. I do not know if the POs tried to fix it, or the owners before them, but it was all kinds of wrong!! Metal flashing with some kind of wood substance (old dresser/entertainment center) glued over it. What a mess!!! I am scared of this project because I have never used fiberglass before, but your posts and Ian's blog have helped. You guys do awesome work. This forum is a tremendous help. A big thank you to everyone, and keep the pictures coming. Our fixer upper Scamp might become a full restoration like your Boler. Best of Luck!!!!
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