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Old 03-17-2013, 07:54 PM   #1
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BentMetal's Avatar
1972 Argosy 26
Alamogordo , New Mexico
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 117
Images: 23
No tail rot, but... what's this?

Hi Argosy People.

Here's a report on my 1972, 26' Argosy. I work a lot, so I only have Sundays to work on the trailer. This will be a slow process, but I'm going to camp in it while I work, so that's a good thing. I finally got to take some stuff out of the Argosy. I was following the tail rot thread by HotPuppy, and I was worried about what I'd find when I pulled out the really, really gross carpet. However, it appears the rear end is looking good. I've included photos here. The previous owner said they never used the shower, so maybe I got lucky.

HOWEVER, there's some serious rot around the Dometic refrigerator. It's pretty weird. Someone taped the base of the refrigerator with silver tape.. looks like it's covering some serious rust around the base of the refrigerator. The only think I can think of is that the roof vent might have been left open at some point. I can't find any type of water staining on the ceiling, though. Please take a look at these pics and give me your thoughts. I have no idea whether or not the Dometic works. The Argosy was sitting for 10 years in a storage lot in El Paso, TX. At least it was dry!
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Old 03-17-2013, 08:53 PM   #2
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1964 26' Overlander
1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre
Anna , Illinois
Join Date: Sep 2002
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No tail rot, but... what's this?

Greetings BentMetal!

You may be correct in your assessment that the moisture damage may have resulted from a roof vent being left open, but the following could also be sources of the moisture:
  • The refrigerator chimney/vent itself. Many of these chimney/vents were constructed of fiberglass or some form of plastic and the ravages of time can cause them to crack and/or split . . . and hail can also fracture the fiberglass/plastic material. You might be lucky and find that your chimney/vent cap is aluminum, but mine were both the plastic material when I first acquired both the Airstream and Argosy.
  • The exterior access panel can also be a source of leaks where it seals around the opening. I am less inclined to suspect this area.
  • If your refrigerator is located beside the entry door as they often are on the 26' coaches, the moisture can result from worn door seals and/or a door that has been sprung by being blown open when underway or a door that was suddenly blown open by a strong wind.
  • The moisture may also have followed a rib or other piece of structure between the inner and outer walls from its origin . . . some areas that might be suspect depending upon their proximity to your refrigerator are: the roof penetration around a roof vent, the roof penetration around the television antenna, the roof penetration around the air conditioner, rivets pulled loose from the awning rail, dried out or missing sealant around refrigerator vent penetration of roof.
Good luck in locating the source of your moisture!


Kevin D. Allen
WBCCI (Lifetime Member)/VAC/Free Wheelers #6359
AIR #827
1964 Overlander International/1999 GMC K2500 Suburban (7400 VORTEC/4.11 Differentials)
1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre/1975 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible (8.2 Liter V8/2.70 Final Drive)
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Old 03-18-2013, 09:07 AM   #3
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1972 Argosy 26
Alamogordo , New Mexico
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 117
Images: 23
Thanks Mr. Overlander :)

I'll definitely check the chimney. The refrigerator is not on the door side, but there is rot on the door side due to the awning rail. It looks like the awning attachment point has been caulked quite a lot. What's the best method for repairing these? Is there a thread about repairing awning related leaks?
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Old 03-18-2013, 01:56 PM   #4
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1981 31' Excella II
New Market , Alabama
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 5,706
That floor looks pretty good. These old fridges can sweat and they also can ice up. When you turn them off all that water can end up in the floor in front of the fridge. Where is also a drain tube that fills a cup on the back of the fridge and when that cup is full it runneth over. I don't see anything that can't be patched with some epoxy. I would pull the fridge and see if you can find leaks when it rains or parked under a sprinkler. You are lucky to live in a dry climate or you would have a mess on your hands like most folks have with an old trailer.

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