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Old 12-19-2007, 04:30 PM   #1
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'69 Safari bath floor repair

Wobbling Sealand china toilet and soggy floor (and a slightly 'droopy' looking back-bumper-bellypan) have me opening up the bath for a look-see, floor repair, and POR "Whitecoat" plastic painting of some knarly, what, white ABS? whaddoo I know from plastics, anyway?...

snapped some along the way to remind of how disgusting this eventual memory really is/was. the bright green stuff at toilet left is mold/mildew, thought I had seen the last of that after Katrina. at least I'm not surprised at seeing it anymore. we're all Mold Veterans, hereabouts:





I'm assuming inner black flange attaches to black-tank, out white-gasketed closet flange must be replaced. correct if wrong..

this bugged-out looking arrangement was holding two of the Sealand toilet closet bolts in, hey, maybe it's stock and just looks whack. amazing how often there is an actual reason for some crazy looking stuff:




another reason I'm anxious to fix this bath is the condition of the...the...plastic? fiberglas? (gotta dig on this and find out). time to repair some of these cracks (and maybe reinforce from behind..hot-glue and L-bracket or something back there) and get some of that POR "whitecoat" or whatever it's called...unless...I can super clean that sucker and have the repair not too visible:



so I drilled out the horizontal bands of rivets holding the molded bath parts and the toilet sections are about ready to lift out..BUT...there's another hidden band of rivets (buck rivets? they feel like they have a washer on the back side?) only accessible from the trunk box (boy, that's gonna be fun to try and re-assemble).



Is this the point where I should consider removing the rear exterior skin above the trunk box for mo' better access? I was hoping to keep exterior skin removal to a minimum (Rivet-Rookie Insecurity) but I'll probably have to address some tank-support and/or frame rust from underneath to get the new floor panel in.

here's one for "what did you find inside yours?" check out the flip flop. and there's a circuit breaker. If I had some kind of 'whole house' GFI protection, is this where it would be? Given it's a '69 I'm going to assume I don't have much in the way of GFI protection:



Wish I had the time/shop/equipment to do a guru-level frame/floor full-on, but this 23-footer takes up my ENTIRE back yard, less 6 inches! I'm trying to find a middle-ground on this floor/frame issue that will enable me to start sealing the exterior, replacing the axle and other much-needed work. all advice appreciated!

I'll keep posting as this moves along, hopefully I'll have time.
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Old 12-19-2007, 05:18 PM   #2
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Presuming our 69 wasn't modified the plastic toilet flange has some screws into the floor and then can be unthreaded from the top of the tank. As for the rotten floor, ours wasn't around the toilet, but the last foot in that rear compartment was compost. That area I still need to finish once it warms up enough to work with trempro again. Our toilet surround was cracked in the same place. I patched it from behind with an epoxy and some fiberglass mesh. Front side I finished with a flexible plastic filler and sanded smooth before refinishing the plastic. As per recommendations on here I refinished with Sherwin Williams Tile Doc with an HPLV gun. Our yard is too very tiny. To do any work on the outside compartments or skin I have to pull the trailer out into the front yard.

The trim around the bathroom plastic seemed hard to find. I was very careful removing it (along with probably 10 tubes of caulking the PO used), painted it and reinstalled it. I raised the area where the toilet was so I could use a new Thetford toilet I'd picked up that was the low profile and too low for our taste. Rather spend the big bucks on something other than a china toilet, plus we opted for something lighter in the back. Its not done but check out our bathroom at Our 1969 Tradewind
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Old 12-19-2007, 05:32 PM   #3
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nice. your bath was in better shape, and whiter. now it's beautiful.

did you have the same 'hidden rivets in the trunk box, along the lav' issue? resolved?

sounds like you may have similar trunk box rot to deal with. plan on removing the exterior skin to do it or go underneath only?

and looks like you painted the ENTIRE bath (upper and lower plastic surrounds) yes? unless I do that too I'll have a white bottom and yellow top. has the gray paint on the trim held up?

nice job on the a/c!
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Old 12-19-2007, 07:51 PM   #4
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Yes same rivets you can only see from the rear compartment. My plan is to replace the last foot of wood, maybe in two pieces if needed from behind. Wood around the perimeter is great until just by the bumper (I've inspected above and below with a mirror and ice pick), and there is room to slide in plywood from the back with the trim pulled. I've got 1/8" or less play there now, mostly compression of the plywood from what I can see. Going to patch, replace a rather rusted rear crossmember and ad some plates per one of the threads here. Will be taking the bananna wrap off to get to it. Not looking forward to it but think it will work just fine.

I did paint the entire bath, as there were several discolored areas and I didn't like the bright white against the off-white top. The trim is Krylon Fusion paint for plastic and has held up very well. Can scrub it with no problem. The before pictures aren't that clear, but the bottom half was VERY yellowed, and could tell which way the sun was shinning in most of the time. Also plenty of stains from shaving cream cans etc.
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Old 12-19-2007, 10:20 PM   #5
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I'm looking to get the measurement of all the windows on a 67 safari. I live in one during the summer and need to replace the curtains with darker fabric. Very bright during the summer. My dilemma is my airstream is in Alaska and I'm in Utah. If someone could take the time I would realy appreciate it. Thanks
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Old 12-19-2007, 10:33 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fotochop
...
here's one for "what did you find inside yours?" check out the flip flop. and there's a circuit breaker. If I had some kind of 'whole house' GFI protection, is this where it would be? Given it's a '69 I'm going to assume I don't have much in the way of GFI protection:


Yesterday, while digging into my '77 Safari re-do, I discovered that the 4 circuit breakers are wired in some kind of daisy chain. The 15 amp ground fault interrupter kills at least two of the other circuits and at least two of the regular breakers are also in series (ground wires all seem to go to the ground bus, so it's not like one breaker is in the ground path, I don't think). What gives? Why would you have a 15 amp breaker in series with 20-30 amp breakers? Is the GFI breaker supposed to protect the whole trailer (except maybe the AC circuit, which I couldn't check since I was on a small generator at the time)?

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Old 12-19-2007, 10:44 PM   #7
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Well funny, cause I was chasing wiring issues today while installing my new intelipower inverter. From the breaker box in your picture there is a 10g romex going across the rear, back in above the old univolt's home and to the front control panel area where this is 3 breakers. The PO had run a wire from the univolt's supply to the 30 amp main breaker, and a wire from the 30 amp main breaker up to the refrigerator, in effect back feeding both the curb and street side circuits. Our breaker in this bathroom cabinet is 30 amp and appears to be the first line of defense for the entire trailer as it kills power to everything. Our front circuit panel has 3 circuits, one street side (15a), one curbside (15a) (which also controls the univolt) and the AC (20a).
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Old 12-21-2007, 11:19 AM   #8
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rivets, closet bolts, etc

can any experts chime in on the best way to remove those 'hidden' rivets indicated in the photo above? they have washer-type rings on the back (forgive my ignorance if these are the 'buck' rivets i keep hearing about). I can just start drillin'/bangin' but I'd hate to screw something up...

how 'bout them wacky closet bolts on the Sealand?

then I gotta decide "gray tank"? (nah, I don't think so, too much weight back there already)... add another heat vent? (probably, shouldn't be hard since I'm re-doing the floor anyway)

planning on doing the 'pizzachop' style shell-on bath floor replacement with frame/chassis beef-up if necessary. thanks!
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Old 12-21-2007, 12:52 PM   #9
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Can you take a few pictures of the back of the hidden rivets and what you have taken apart already. If they are solid shank rivets they had to be shot in first. It could be that you are out of sequence in your removal and may have to disassemble more then originally planned.
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Old 12-21-2007, 01:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fotochop
can any experts chime in on the best way to remove those 'hidden' rivets indicated in the photo above? they have washer-type rings on the back (forgive my ignorance if these are the 'buck' rivets i keep hearing about). I can just start drillin'/bangin' but I'd hate to screw something up...
Just drill them out from the trunk. Those are "pop" rivets and not "buck" rivets. They have the washer on them so that they don't pull through the plastic/fiberglass.
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Old 12-21-2007, 05:55 PM   #11
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why NOT a regular p-trap?

yessir, that did it. thank you. took me a while but got 'em out.

then I got to the p-trap. hmmm.... obviously threaded in but ALSO hard-glued? did some searchin' and saw my mentor Pizzachop made himself a pipe tool to unthread the puppy so I did likewise. unfortunately it was so stuck in that the plastic trap broke before the thread loosened. here's the result:



ouch!

so WHY is the p-trap hard-glued and not a simple ABS plastic union like you'd find at home? any reason why I should NOT replace this arrangement with something more easily removed? (i should add this trailer has had prior renovations...this may not be original equipment..)

this shot shows the tool you should make if you ever need to remove a lav. hopefully you'll have better results than I had. I think I can piece it all back better eventually.

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Old 12-21-2007, 06:12 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fotochop
so WHY is the p-trap hard-glued and not a simple ABS plastic union like you'd find at home? any reason why I should NOT replace this arrangement with something more easily removed? (i should add this trailer has had prior renovations...this may not be original equipment..)
Glad to here you got those rivets out.

As far as the hard-glued ABS, I am going to hard-glue all of mine and include a clean-out fitting rather than a removeable trap. The plumbing in a trailer that is towed down the bumpy road is different than a home plumbing system. Better to have the occasional maintenance be more difficult if it will avoid developing leaks every time you transport the trailer.
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Old 12-21-2007, 07:55 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by byamcaravanner
...As far as the hard-glued ABS, I am going to hard-glue all of mine and include a clean-out fitting rather than a removeable trap. The plumbing in a trailer that is towed down the bumpy road is different than a home plumbing system. ...
I agree that hard gluing is the safe way to go, but I've had a regular screw-together J-trap in both the Caravel and Overlander for over 5 years each and only had one small leak after 100,000+ miles. Maybe it's luck.

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Old 12-23-2007, 12:29 AM   #14
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I went through some of what you're going through and the rest I'll be doing shortly. I had a cross support rust completely fail due to rust while towing and had the holding tank and all fall to the ground. I built a new metal pan for the tank, replaced the styrofoam insulation with new and bolted new cross members to support the tank front and back out of 2' angle. I temp fixed my sagging floor in the rear by bolting up some 1/4 stell plates, until I get time to replace teh rear section of the flooring. When I do I'm leaving the skin attached to the frame. The crucial part is to have the new floor fit into the "c" channel around the perimeter, this is where the trailer gets most of it's strength. You don't have any GFCI protection with the orriginal eletrical system since it wasn't invented yet, but can be upgraded. One thing with the black plumbing pipes is that's what was used for trailer manufacturing in those days. Infact, mobile home trailers use the same stuff. Check the condition of you holding tank vent pipe, if it's cracked it can be a source for leakage and future corrosion. That was the main cause of our holding tank falling down to start with. After I repaired it, I installed a quick release coupler onto it incase I have to remove the holding tank again.

In case yo need to drop the tank, the closet flange screw into the opening of the tank, don't pry it loose or you'll break something and you don't want to break the tank, they cost $500. I think you'll find retro fitting a grey water tank wouldn't be easy, I considered it with my trailer and figure if I have to have a grey water tank, a portable tank is much cheaper.

FOR THOSE WHO ARE ABOUT TO 'STREAM, I SALUTE YOU!
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