at this point I have taking apart the trailer and I'm in the process of doing a "shell on" floor replacement.
so far I learned:
1. take the interiors out. this is only patiente and detective work to find where the screws are.
2.- remove the propane lines
3.- remove the water lines
4.- remove the sewer lines
5.- remove the belly out. painful job 'cause some rivets still have a steel steam in it and a drill bit can not be pointed so a small grinder will help. (be careful of not damaging the aluminum sheets). since the belly should be 2 pieces side by side, is recommended to remove the rivets from the middle first and then the ones on the sides. to remove the sheets, overlap them and pull them out.
6.- remove walls and old insultion. this is a puzzle!, when you remove the wall skins some pieces of aluminum come out. put a matching number in the wall and in the piece so you remember where it goes!
7.-DO NOT REMOVE the complete FLOOR!!!!!! this can cause the shell to bend or fall. (i did not do it
). Remove the 2 rear planks. and fix the frame in that area. I did not sand blasted the frame because a)the frame was not that bad. b) sandblasting jus weakens the frame C) makes a mess. I used a wire brush in my grinder and that was just enough. I painted with tremclad rust paint primer and then tremclad aluminum color paint. DO NOT DESTROY THE EDGES OF THE FLOOR, you'll need them as a template.
8.- once the paint was dry I installed only the rear plank (just one) THE NEW FLOOR COULD BE A GOOD IDEA TO PAINT IT.
9.- remove the 2 front pieces of floor in the front. Repeat theframe fixing procedure and install only the front piece.
8.- I just removed the 2 pieces of floor in front of the door and I'm welding the bottom of the door frame.
this is all i have done so far.
9.- remember no to bolt the rear and front floor on the sides, just the ends. because to put the floor in the middle you need to streach the shell on the sides.
Also, once you remove the front floor remember to check all your wiring, cause the connections are done in the front.
green- runing lights
blue - battery
2 smaller reds breakway switch
black reverse lights (even if your trailer doesn't have a reverse lights the wire goes all the way to the back and is capped). If I'm wrong please somebody let me know.
I don't remember the color for turning lights and stop lights, if you need to know them send me a note.
part of my research/work is that when i removed the inner skins (walls) and insulation I found out a bunch of leaks. rivets are used 2 different ways in the shell. 1.- to join sheets and 2.-to fix frame parts to the shell. anyway some of these rivets get "loose" and the water leaks around the rivets and where the sheets are joint. The leaks can be fixed by 1.- with a small "scraper (like the one the dentist use for your theet) DO NOT TRY TO SEAL A LONG PIECE AT ONCE. because you have to seal it and then tight the rivets when the sealant still soft.
To tight the rivets you need 2 people. The way I'm doing it is, my brother holds the outside part of the rivet with a dolly (I dont want to wreck the look of the rivets) and inside with a pneumatic hammer set to very low work rivet by rivet. I grab a chissel round and "pointy" and with the grinder I "flattened" it to around 1/4" and I use this to apply pressure to the back of the rivet and you can see that the rivet becomes thigther and wider. BE CAAREFUL DO NOT PUT TO MUCH AIR PRESUURE IN THE HAMMER because is difficult to control and you are gonna break the rivet and hit the skin of the shell and is gonna look aweful. the pneumatic hammer are like 20 dlls and the chissel I bought 3 for 3 dlls, so is a cheap solution. it olnly requieres a being extra careful.
once the sealant is finished, I bought a few cans of black undercoating in wallmart for 3 bucks a piece and is the same stuff they use to seal the shell from inside.
- rivets in a harware store. go to a fasteners store (way cheaper and more variety)
- dont buy bolts in a big hardware store such a RONA in canada they nail you with the prices, you can buy 5 times more for half the price in a bolt supply store
- trailer accessories (driving accessories, such a breakaway switch, brakes, external lights, jacks) in an RV parts store. they will sell the parts 4 or 5 times more expensive than if you buy it a utility trailers store, such as Princess auto" example, breakaway switch- RV store=40 dlls, Princess auto=9