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Old 01-05-2008, 07:38 PM   #15
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hot water heater removal '69 Safari

as part of my bath floor re-do I need to pull the hot water heater.

after removing all the extremely rusted screws from the face flange and removing the gas feed pipe I still can't seem to get the hot water heater to budge. does anyone know if it's secured from inside by screws etc? I can see screws but they appear to only secure the housing on the inside.

the heater has TONS of Vulkem behind the flange. I'd just like to know if there are more screws before I get the hammer and 2x6 and start beating it out from inside. kinda hate to beat on stuff in there, but will do if necessary..

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and after looking at this breaker again, it appears to be in the OFF position???

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strangely, everything appears to work fine on the trailer, electrically speaking. note that this is on the streetside and the univolt is on the curbside opposite this box. can I assume this breaker is dead and has no function at all?

confession: I'm electrically-challenged. any help appreciated
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Old 01-05-2008, 07:46 PM   #16
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Rick - that's the main breaker for the trailer and serves as a safety check between the cord to the trailer and the main feed up to the breaker box in your front compartment. That breaker is on, the box writing has an arrow to have you shut it all the way off if tripped (then back to on but they left out that part), if you look on the breaker it is tripped to on. If you flip it you should loose all electric in the trailer (110 at least). Our hot water heater was just freakin heavy being full of sediment from decades of use. If gas line is free, screws are out, and water lines are disconnected that should come free. If yours is like mine when that heater comes out you should be staring at your yard, so I'd remove any visable screws attached to the heater too. The vulkum is strong stuff, did you try like a plastic putty knife between the flange and body and very carefully break that seal? I'd make sure you have the bond between the flange and skin broken of any sealer or if you hit that heater you'll probably tear the skin or at least dent the snot out of it. Good luck!
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Old 01-05-2008, 09:11 PM   #17
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Looks just like the one we took out this fall. Goransons right - with all the screws out on the outer skin the only thing holding it is the old butyl tape between the flange and outer skin. Once you pry the tape loose you'l have to manhandle it from the outside to get it out.

Just in case your were not planning to you may want to remove the stainless door with the hinge intact - along with the aluminum grate before you pitch the old unit.
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Old 01-05-2008, 11:51 PM   #18
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Yes, the breaker is "ON".

Definitely remove the whole door and KEEP it, including the perforated metal or louvered vent panel. You can't find bare aluminum doors any more.

Yes, the only screws holding the water heater in are those around the face flange. I have often had to take a flat blade screwdriver or putty knife to gently pry the outer shell skin away from the flange. Once you break the caulk seal, you should be able to pull the water heater straight out (given that you've really gotten the propane pipe out of the way). The only problem you may encounter is that the edge of the shell opening may be cut rough and is catching on some part of the water heater.

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Old 01-14-2008, 06:07 PM   #19
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the saga continues...

ok, been a while since I updated this thread and since my new N.O. airstream buddy Jim Clark came over today it seems like a good time to do it. (thanks, Jim, for assuring me I didn't get scammed on the trailer..)

where to begin...let's see, I've gotten all the inside skins out that I need to and dropped the tank and pan out today. I EXPECTED the (rotten) floor to be sitting INSIDE a c-channel ("Dude, where's my c-channel?") but instead it looks bolted to a u-channel. Assuming this is not some wack-o renovation but just a year/model way they did it in '69...please correct if this is way wrong

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glad I'm doing this. here you can see how toast the floor was under the hot water heater:

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and what's up with the spray foam insulation???? factory standard '69 or should I assume this is from a prior renovation? I've heard pros and cons for the spray foam (please add your opinion) but think I'll be replacing with new foam-board ala Malconium under the new plywood section. good news is the frame is in decent shape, should clean well and will get POR'ed

when I dropped the tank I found out there is actually some kind of a tank-level sensor. unfortunately none of the control panel gauges are working up in the front of the interior although I may add a small gauge in the bathroom itself. any ideas anyone?

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this shot below shows more rot in the aft curbside (photo rt) which will require me to diligently seek out any leaks (rain Wednesday) in that area. the plumbing vent also runs there, hoping all is intact:

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I'm still a but fuzzy on how I'm going to support my new floor. My plan is to only remove about three feet (from aft) which will be right even with the first crossmember of the frame. Not sure If I should try to split the existing floor right in the center of the chassis/frame crosspiece (imagine you were adding sheetrock to a wall and cut the old sheetrock right dead center in the stud so you could have both old and new pieces attached to stud...that kind of thing)....hmmm back to searching..

as always, any advice is appreciated
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Old 01-14-2008, 08:30 PM   #20
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looks like you're making good progress, I'm swapping water heaters and found a little damage under it too. not to hijack but does anyone know where I can get the fitting in Rick's bottom right picture (white t-hub w/thetford bolt pattern)? I'd keep the wires and sensors, you can buy aftermarket sensor read outs. Is your control panel gone gone? The sensors just use idiot lights than are hard to see through the smoked plastic unit lit. Should have sensors swiches on the control panel for fresh and black. If it is missing I know a guy with a decent one you might be able to wheel-n-deal with.
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Old 01-14-2008, 09:23 PM   #21
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Ok I,m setting in a hotel room in Tucson Az. If you are taking out 3 feet you might as well go another foot foward and take the whole panel out up to the factory splice if you can. The crossmember at the splice is narrower then the others for the splice plate. that should make replacment a little easier. The "C" is actually a "U" channel as pictured and is stock. Be sure to remove all the staples and the squiggly steel floor panel splices. If you have to splice the new floorboard to get it installed do it right down the center.
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Old 01-20-2008, 05:46 PM   #22
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Progress Report 1/20/08

ATTENTION NEWBIES: when metal gurus like Aerowood send you a heads up DO NOT IGNORE IT! ;-) muchas gracias buck-meister A., for that 'go to 4 foot' advice. I took it and yessr, thar she is, a beauty, the floor spice in question, lookin' like the day she went in back in '69:

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which is gonna make splicing the new plywood so much easier. airforums to the rescue once again. Once the old subfloor came out I could really notice more "issues", like these gnarly breaks in the aft U-channel. Unfortunately the rig seems to have a bit of rear-end-sag. Not much, maybe a half-inch? but enough to break the U channel:

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My game plan, unless one of you experts can suggest better (PLEEEZE?) is to lay some flat aluminum stock into the U and drill thru it when I put in the new carriage bolts. sound feasible? here's what the gap looks like. definitely more than the 3/4 inch needed for the floor:

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The Very Good News (and a major reason why I'm doing this) is the frame appears to be in very solid shape (whew!) and ready for some POR'ing etc. A couple small cross pieces (nomenclature?) have rusted off:

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but my welder can fix that with no problem. I want to add a few extra braces, like under the hot water heater, flat stock to not interfere with the gas pipe. Got to weld an additonal black tank support, one was totally gone and probably re-do the nuts/bolts to make the tank 'droppable'. In the Bad News Department we have a crack in the black tank at the dump flange which I'm going to try and repair or have repaired and, yes, I know these don't always work, but a new one just ain't in the budget right now. Here's a shot of the shot floor puzzle that will be used to make the template for the new floor:

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once again: ANY ADVICE APPRECIATED! I'm jes a-learnin' as I go here, folks, and I know these gnarly toilet poop-threads ain't nearly as SEXY and alluring as "My New CCD Bambi-Sport With T3 Internet" type topics or "Pre-Armageddon Design Thesis " stuff but I really appreciate all you hardcore knuckle-busters chiming in with your ideas and advice. It's already helped me immensely and I look forward one day to helping others in the same way...
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Old 01-20-2008, 07:33 PM   #23
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Rick, if you can v grove the crack and drill the the ends I have some high quality epoxy and cloth which can be used to seal the crack.

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Old 01-20-2008, 09:44 PM   #24
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Rick,

If your welder has a TIG, you might as well weld up your floor channel crack before you reinforce it.

Inland Andy recommends an additional flange on either side (outboard of the main frame rail) as an additional hold down point for the floor channel to the frame. (Think of a 2"-3" piece of angle iron welded to the out side of the main frame rail with a 3/8" bolt securing passing through it, the plywood, and the floor channel. Be sure to add a large fender washer or better yet, piece of steel inside the channel to increase the holding power.) This will give you four rear hold down points on the frame instead of the factory two.

You are wise to replace the entire piece of plywood.
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Old 01-21-2008, 09:47 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fotochop

like these gnarly breaks in the aft U-channel. Unfortunately the rig seems to have a bit of rear-end-sag. Not much, maybe a half-inch? but enough to break the U channel:

My game plan, unless one of you experts can suggest better (PLEEEZE?) is to lay some flat aluminum stock into the U and drill thru it when I put in the new carriage bolts. sound feasible? here's what the gap looks like. definitely more than the 3/4 inch needed for the floor:
I have a couple of questions? In the one picture there appears to be a piece of aluminum under the "C" channel at the break. What is that and where is that located on the back of the trailer. The other question is, have you tried putting a piece of scrap 3/4" ply under the "C" channel where the floor is removed and then clamping to see if it will pull all back together? Jacking up the rear section of the frame may make it easier to see if it all clamps back together. If everything comes back together, then I would put in your new floorboard and press on. I would not use carriage bolts though, but regular ole 1/4" hex head stainless steel bolts with fender washers (large area washer) on both sides and then finish it off with self locking nuts. I would put a minimum of about six through the rear cross member area.

Kip
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Old 01-21-2008, 11:11 AM   #26
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re: Pizzachop (btw: your bath repair and ex+ photos inspired me to dive in, next time we're near Athens we look forward to some lunch of paparonnis pepperoni...can I borrow your backhoe? just kidding.. ;-) the Inland Andy add-on would be angle iron running LENGTHWISE (not across) along the mainframe (which are also the 'skid' plates on my '69) members, correct? in this shot, (taken from streetside just below the hot water heater area) you can see where a PO has already run aluminum as a mounting surface for the bellypan (corrosion risk?) I think you're suggesting additional angle iron ABOVE these, yes? either way, it sounds like a great idea since the aft floor really doesn't seem to have enough tie-in points:

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re: Aerowood, that aluminum in the c-channel photo is a piece of flat stock that covers the fore area of the back-bumper-access (dump valve area), and the bumper cover is hinged to it (or just above it), if memory serves me... in this shot you can see it from outside the trailer aft, running across the back bumper:

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I'm seriously considering beefing up the one, lightweight cross-member that the above piece is attached to, which can be seen in this next shot taken from below the bumper area. (The aft-most edge of the floor sits on top of it.) It just doesn't seem sturdy enough to carry what's being asked of it, although the 'Inland Andy' addition would certainly help:

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Old 01-21-2008, 11:42 AM   #27
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The aluminum channel in the first pic is stock. My 71 Gt was so equipped also. I am planning on replacing it with a aluminum angle that is primed and installed wet with sealant to prevent corrosion. I agree that your rear cross member is on the flimsy side too. Mine has a full sized cross member in this location. I did a lot of rework in this area. I made a new aluminum angle that went from above the rear cross member then up and inbetween the rear skin, "C" channel, and vertical frames. The other piece of aluminum angle goes down from the rear crossmember to cover the rear crossmember and act as the fwd wall of the bumper storage area. I had to route the lower surface of the floor board to clear these two pieces. The vertical angle is .063 2024-T3 amd the lower angle is .040 2024-T3.
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Old 01-21-2008, 11:49 AM   #28
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Here's a pic of my rear cross member
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