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Old 05-01-2010, 07:01 PM   #1
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What were they thinking?

Finally found someone to replace the roof on my '93 Land yacht MoHo. I knew the rot was throughout the whole roof, but when we started tearing into it it, I was appalled with the way Airstream constructed the roof. Vinyl on top, followed by Luan, then foam, then luan onto which the interior ceiling is glued. Support beams running side to side, but none front to back. Most of the beams were completely rusted through. In order to fix roof, the entire a whole new support system would have to be designed and the interior would have to be dismantled. What was airstream thinking? I know weight is important, but I think Airstream cut too many corners in the construction of this unit. Bottom line, the previous owner's leakage problems and poor construction by Airstream has left me with a trip to the bone yard. Very sad and disheartened.
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Old 05-01-2010, 07:46 PM   #2
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Wow! Send some pics, hopefully owners of like coaches can do something before the "boneyard".
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Old 05-02-2010, 08:15 AM   #3
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Wow what a drag! Please post some pictures. I would like to see what we are in for....
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Old 05-02-2010, 08:26 AM   #4
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Convertible moho? Could be the next rage!

Seriously, I hope you find a solution & not the bone yard!
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Old 05-02-2010, 08:59 AM   #5
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They were following standard RV building practices of the era. Sounds like the PO didn't take very good care of it or take care of issues as soon as the cropped up.

Unfortunately too many people purchase an RV and don't realize just how much maintenance they really require.

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Old 05-02-2010, 10:11 AM   #6
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Maybe they thought a 15 year life span was enough.

What do you mean by vinyl on top? Do you mean like a vinyl roof on a 1970s Oldsmobile?
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Old 05-02-2010, 01:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ganaraska View Post
Maybe they thought a 15 year life span was enough.

What do you mean by vinyl on top? Do you mean like a vinyl roof on a 1970s Oldsmobile?
IIRC the vinyl was actually a form of rubber roof, possibly white EPDM. I have helped replace a couple of those on some fifth wheels.

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Old 05-02-2010, 09:21 PM   #8
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We have been looking at SOB Class A and C motorhomes for the past 6 weeks, and we haven't found 1 yet without some kind of roof issue.

I, too, am scared that you'd have to replace the entire ceiling to correctly repair a rotted roof structure.

Everyone claims to have "cleaned and sealed it once a year", but when you hear cracking sounds when you push on soft spots/bubbles in these roofs....
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Old 05-05-2010, 08:43 PM   #9
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We bought our 2005 moho about 2 years ago from the first owner, and he had the receipts showing what he had done, and when, including a roof re-seal about 15 months old. We had it redone by the shop that we inherited with TerraYacht, and last trip in a heavy downpour at Casini there was a leak from the top of the right windshield, not an area that is usually resealed.

The bigger problem was in the back right: the plastic diverter gizmos on the ends of the gutters had broken off--perhaps even a couple by me. The inside of my bedside cabinet was VERY wet. When I looked at the roof after I got home I could see where there used to be sealant, probably the water had just washed it away.

I bought new diverters and removed the remains of the old ones, resealed and replaced. The last big rain had some heavy cloudbursts and so far everything is dry.
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Old 05-05-2010, 09:13 PM   #10
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I have a friend who has an original 1953 home-built teardrop trailer with an aluminum exterior. It's been sitting under cover in a carport for about 40 years. The wood frame is almost completely gone, and the shell is like a house of cards. One day soon it will probably blow over in a high wind and disintegrate.
It's a shame more manufacturers didn't use aluminum frames.

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Old 05-08-2010, 07:32 AM   #11
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Thanks for all the replies. Before the bone yard, I have come up with another plan. I put MoHo in an enclosed storage area to keep it from turning into a huge aquarium. I have a wonderful friend that can fabricate new steal cross beams for me. I'm going to design a roof support system so I can have a rubber roof put down over plywood, not luan! first step is to make sure I have good supports to tie the new beams into. Will begin removing top/side flange and old sealant today. If side tie-ins look good, will begin removing cabinets so the roof can come off. I have wonderful friends willing to help me.

Haven't posted pictures cause my computer crashed and I just got it up and running. Will post today. So if anyone has any suggestions in the design of the roof support system, please share.
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Old 05-08-2010, 08:11 AM   #12
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glad to see you're giving it a second chance. just don't forget to calculate the weight of the new roof into the MH capacities. the weight can add up pretty quickly.
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Old 05-14-2010, 08:01 PM   #13
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My 1993 LY roof is constructed as you described, except glued to the luan is fiberglas not vinyl or rubber. So if yours isn't fiberglas it possibly was worked on previously. The early AS were a three piece roof system that was a very poor design (which requires constant attention) that AS took way to long to change. It is hard to find any of these early fiberglas body styles without water issues, way to big of a consistent problem on these early models to be a maintenance issue only. I agree with your thought - What was AS Thinking? One would expect more from AS than the standard RV building practices at the time, especially when these coaches were selling for around $90-100,000. I also agree that RV's require maintenance, but the building materials of luan sandwiched between two products (styrofoam & fiberglas) with no place for the moisture to escape creates major problems, and even with trying to maintain these RV's, it doesn't take much of a leak to cause a lot of damage.
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Old 06-29-2010, 07:03 PM   #14
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Exclamation No bone yard! New plan for Land Yacht roof

I hope I am not double posting. Thought I had replied to comments and posted pictures, but I don't see it. So......I am going to try and attach some photos of before the old roof came off and what I found underneath. Since the entire steel roof cross beams are rusted, I have a wonderful friend that is going to fabricate a new roof structure with "L" brackets to support the new plywood and foam. Will attempt to salvage the interior ceiling fabric. Will complete new roof with a rubber roof, new vents and fans. Will use existing AC's. While I have access, will check all wiring (don't know how, but will learn) with the hopes of fixing upper running lights and backup camera. If any of you wonderful people out there have any suggestions that I need to consider for this project, please speak up...I'm listening. The new roof structure will be constructed and installed in 3 pieces, starting with the middle. The only challenge I have at this point is the incredible heat we are experiencing in coastal ga. will have to take advantage of early mornings and late afternoons while trying to avoid the afternoon storms.
Looking forward to hearing from folks on this project.
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