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Old 03-28-2012, 03:50 PM   #1
Barend
 
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1990 25' Airstream 250
Eindhoven , NB, The Netherlands
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Cockpit window bar loose

Hi,

The diagonal bar in the passenger side cockpit window of our 1991 Classic 250 somehow has lost its position. This may be the effect of some damage in the past. During our recent trip through Eastern and South Europe (Poland, Ukraine, Moldova, Rumania, Bulgaria, Turkey, Greece and Italy) everything has been tested to its limits on the most atrocious roads you can imagine.

Anyway this bar is no longer fixed to whatever it used to be fixed to. I cannot figure out how this was kept in position. Many threads on this forum discuss windows, but I did not find anything about this bar. I hope the photos show what I mean. Obviously the window does not close properly anymore.
Any suggestions are much appreciated.

As you can see, the duct tape I used as a temporary fix was stronger than the paint.

Thanks,
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Old 03-28-2012, 05:24 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barend View Post
Hi,

The diagonal bar in the passenger side cockpit window of our 1991 Classic 250 somehow has lost its position. This may be the effect of some damage in the past. During our recent trip through Eastern and South Europe (Poland, Ukraine, Moldova, Rumania, Bulgaria, Turkey, Greece and Italy) everything has been tested to its limits on the most atrocious roads you can imagine.

Anyway this bar is no longer fixed to whatever it used to be fixed to. I cannot figure out how this was kept in position. Many threads on this forum discuss windows, but I did not find anything about this bar. I hope the photos show what I mean. Obviously the window does not close properly anymore.
Any suggestions are much appreciated.

As you can see, the duct tape I used as a temporary fix was stronger than the paint.

Thanks,
The cause of the issue, is lack of proper wheel balance.

The entire window must be removed and then the center piece can be rerivet back in place.

Andy
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Old 03-28-2012, 06:00 PM   #3
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The bar was originally held in place by a screw from the top of the window frame into the bar. There is a second screw like it at the bottom of the bar. The fix would be to remove the window assembly, drill out the broken screw on the bar, remove and replace the screw at the bottom of the bar, and reassemble everything, then put the window back in the motor home. Only remove gaskets that you can get replacements for, not all of them are available, or not easily available.
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Old 03-28-2012, 10:25 PM   #4
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Whatever you do, BE CAREFUL WIH THAT WINDOW. It is my understanding that the fixed section of glass (toward the front) is ABSOLUTELY no longer available.
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Old 03-31-2012, 12:22 AM   #5
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As Andy and Terry said the proper fix is to remove the entire window frame to access the screw that holds the diagonal bar in place. I had the same problem however I came up with a solution that has held up for about 20,000 miles so far.

If you look closely in your second picture you can see the silver extension of the diagonal bar that extends to the top of the frame. It is about 1/2 the with of the diagonal. The mounting screw goes through the top of the frame into this extension. Next look at the frame and you will see an inner track where the sliding window fits and an outer track where the diagonal fits. This track is maybe 5/16" wide x 1/2" deep. At the bottom of this track are two steps extending from the sides of the track. The track continues about another 1/2" but only about 3/16" wide. If you pull the filler gasket back a little you will see what I'm describing.

What I did was fabricate an aluminum block about 2" long x1" high and 5/16" thick. I then machined the bottom edge about 1/16" on each side so that it fit snuggly into both the wider and narrow parts of the track. From the end it looks like a "T" with a tall top. Lastly I cut the end at an angle to match the diagonal.

Next I had my windshield guy come out and he very carefully cut away the brittle and deformed gasket on the front of the diagonal. After cleaning out all the old gasket and dirt we could ease the diagonal back into its original position. Now the aluminum "T" I made was fit in the track to support the diagonal and I drilled two holes through the frame into the aluminum "T" and secured it with blind rivets. Make sure they don't go into the inner track and interfere with the sliding window. Next the windshield guy inserted some thin rubber shims to support the stationary window in the center of the diagonal and then sealed the glass in with windshield adhesive.

I made a "T" for both the top and bottom of my diagonal. I made them so that they fit about 1/8" below the track and cut the filler rubber molding so that it covers the "T". All you can see is two rivet heads on the side of the frame. The entire installation took less than an hour not counting fabricating the "T"s.

I hope you can figure out what I tried to describe. Unfortunately I don't have any pictures but take a look at your frame and if you have any questions I will try to draw a sketch of what I did. By the way the dimensions are a guess from my memory which is old and forgetful so have your machinist take his own measurements to make the aluminum "T"s.

Good luck, Dan
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Old 03-31-2012, 03:47 PM   #6
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I have no idea if this helps, but based on the discussion here, my window has been fixed too...
Hre is a pic of the RH side upper frame from the inside, clearly showing 2 rivets...

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Old 04-01-2012, 01:08 AM   #7
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I have no idea if this helps, but based on the discussion here, my window has been fixed too...
Hre is a pic of the RH side upper frame from the inside, clearly showing 2 rivets...

Key somebody put a couple of sheet metal screws in mine like your rivets. The problem was they kept working loose. I think part of the problem was the gasket was working it's way out and the window was bulging out. Cleaning the old gasket out and getting the glass back where it belonged was a major concern. I felt the aluminum blocks would give better support to the diagonal then the screws which had already failed. I have a machine shop in my garage so the fabrication was quite easy. It is also possible that the diagonal was pushed further out of position before the original repair was made causing it's ultimate failure. The bottom line is the fix has been in for about 20,000 miles now and still looks good.

Cheers, Dan
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Old 04-01-2012, 09:47 AM   #8
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Key somebody put a couple of sheet metal screws in mine like your rivets. The problem was they kept working loose. I think part of the problem was the gasket was working it's way out and the window was bulging out. Cleaning the old gasket out and getting the glass back where it belonged was a major concern. I felt the aluminum blocks would give better support to the diagonal then the screws which had already failed. I have a machine shop in my garage so the fabrication was quite easy. It is also possible that the diagonal was pushed further out of position before the original repair was made causing it's ultimate failure. The bottom line is the fix has been in for about 20,000 miles now and still looks good.

Cheers, Dan
Dan, do you have any photos of your repair, maybe even a before and after photo?
Thanks, Derek
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Old 04-01-2012, 06:03 PM   #9
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Dan, do you have any photos of your repair, maybe even a before and after photo?
Thanks, Derek
Derek unfortunately I don't have any pictures as we were making it up as we put it together. Here is what it looks like now.


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You can see the bottom came out OK but the top was deformed as the diagonal and glass was pushing it out. We tried to straighten it but the fear of breaking the glass limited the effort.

Here is a very rough sketch of the bottom track and the aluminum piece I fabricated. As you can see it's pretty simple but gives good support to the diagonal.

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I hope this helps, Dan
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Old 04-02-2012, 08:11 AM   #10
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My driver side got out of wack on the top. Short of removal, tapped the top into place forward) very gently, then tapped the frame from the outside and the inside to squeeze the frame tighter and used silicone to add to the hold. Has been ok for a year now and hopefully will continue.
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Old 04-02-2012, 12:09 PM   #11
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I guess this happens more than I thought. I think the greatest concern is how old, deformed and brittle the gasket is. It appears mine had been bulging out for some time and the frame was pushed out quite a bit. It just didn't look like it was going back where it belonged without breaking the glass. Carefully cutting out the old gasket was the only safe way to get the glass back in position. The new technology in windshield adhesives made sealing and keeping the glass in position easy. Once the glass is secure there are a few options to hold the diagonal bar.

Cheer, Dan
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Old 04-02-2012, 03:11 PM   #12
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Many thanks for your suggestions. I was developing some thoughts along the lines you describe, Dan. The "official" way of removing the complete window is not something to undertake lightly. The main worry now seems to be to get the fixed part of the window back where it belongs. As the bottom part is still fixed, I do not want to move the diagonal too far out of its position. So getting the old gasket out made it possible to push the window back.

I will give that a try over the next few days.
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Old 04-02-2012, 04:13 PM   #13
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1984 34.5' Airstream 345
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Sint-Oedenrode, NL...
Sweet!
Funny to see how far and wide the Motorhomes are traveling!
I lived in Eindhoven and Helmond when I worked at DAF and Nedcar... not far from you!
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Old 04-02-2012, 04:30 PM   #14
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Many thanks for your suggestions. I was developing some thoughts along the lines you describe, Dan. The "official" way of removing the complete window is not something to undertake lightly. The main worry now seems to be to get the fixed part of the window back where it belongs. As the bottom part is still fixed, I do not want to move the diagonal too far out of its position. So getting the old gasket out made it possible to push the window back.

I will give that a try over the next few days.
As I mentioned before I had a windshield installer help. He had a great assortment of razors and unique cutting tools to remove the old gasket. He also had different thickness rubber shims that he used to position the glass while he applied the adhesive. I gave him $50 for the help and there is no doubt in my mind it was money well spent.

Good luck, Dan
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