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Old 08-14-2016, 08:25 AM   #1
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1967 17' Caravel
La Crosse , Wisconsin
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Shell Back On . . .

My first post. I've been mostly in read-only mode on the forum site and want to thank everyone for all the great info. While reading through the site I've detected a fair amount of perplexity/intimidation among some about fixing the frame and replacing the sub floor. I've seen some methods for lifting the body off the frame that seemed to require rather elaborate constructions to lift the body from above. I took another approach and screwed together some 2x4 bracing within the shell and jacked it up from the inside using only common everyday items I already had around. I actually took the shell off by myself with only the use of a car jack, some deck screws and 2x4's. Had some much appreciated help from my brother and dad setting the body back on once the frame and floor were fixed(see attached photos). I have more photos if anyone wants to see more. Basically i just screwed the 2x4's to the ribs inside the body. Wasn't pretty or complicated but it worked.
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Old 08-14-2016, 09:30 AM   #2
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2009 25' FB International
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Thanks for posting the results of your project thus far. You have put a lot of hard work and thought into it to get it to this point. It's great to see an example of your creativity. Keep us posted on the progress.

Welcome to the forum and thanks again for sharing!
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Old 08-14-2016, 11:10 PM   #3
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1965 24' Tradewind
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Tech can you describe your interior lifting method again please. I see the picture but just don't quite get it.
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Old 08-15-2016, 09:35 AM   #4
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Here are some details. The photos should explain the process which involved attaching braces inside. The whole trailer was jacked up, then i attached 2x4 "stilts" to the bracing with deck screws. then lower the frame back down and the stilts hold the body up. Did one end first, then the other. When the body was high enough to clear the wheels/shock brackets then wiggled out the frame. It did take a little back and forth to work the frame out. I did this entire operation by myself with only a car jack and a few 2x4s and deck srews. Hope that makes it clearer, gotta run now.
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Old 08-15-2016, 10:55 AM   #5
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That makes sense nice job. Shows another good method.
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Old 08-15-2016, 11:24 AM   #6
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Here, these two photos from behind show the entire trailer jacked up. I used jack stands to support while inside attaching the "legs" to the interior bracing. The second photo shows that after lowering the frame the shell stays elevated supported by the 2x4 legs. This was repeated on the front.
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Old 08-15-2016, 12:21 PM   #7
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Looking great - good luck on the rest of the project!
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Old 08-15-2016, 12:34 PM   #8
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An improvement to this process (which we used when putting the shell back on the frame) would be to make sure the C-channel is fastened securely to the body. Then jack just the body up (by jacking on the support brace inside enough to get some sort of cross beam inserted and attached to the brace with some upright members (see photo). If the beam is snug to the C-channel then it provides some additional structural support. Some diagonal bracing for strength might have been good but we didn't use any and it went fine as most of the pressure was in compression. A 2x4 might be adequate for the cross beam - i used some rough cut lumber my neighbor had that was about 3x4. a 2x 6 should be more than adequate. The main thing is that the beam stick out past the side of the body a foot or more so that jacking could be done on the ends of the beam sticking out on either side of the body. The beams i used were 10 feet long. Then a person could jack all four corners evenly with four jacks or by rotating one or two jacks. We used 4 jacks (a collection of car jacks) putting the body back on. This would allow removal of the frame if it had the plywood still attached. the "stilts" or "legs" did interfere a bit with removal of the frame which had to be finessed out. I removed all the plywood before attempting to remove the frame. In the photo you can also see some additional bracing between the cross braces to stiffen everything up and provide strength to the cross braces. You can also see that the uprights connecting the cross brace to the beam stick out a little on the bottom where they touch the ground. This made it easier to attache the beam. the stubs were sawed off once the body was supported by the beams. Cement blocks came in handy for elevating the jacks and saw horses were about the right height for support once proper height was achieved.
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Old 08-15-2016, 02:00 PM   #9
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Pretty clever. Best of luck with the rest of it and please keep posting.
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Old 08-15-2016, 05:15 PM   #10
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That's a very clever approach. Looks similar to a method of lifting a boat off a trailer without a crane. Lift boat on jacks. Roll trailer forward until jack meets trailer cross-member. Set another jack on other side of cross member and remove first jack and roll trailer forward until jack meets next trailer cross-member - and so on until trailer is out from under the boat. Am also looking forward to project updates.
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