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Old 02-25-2009, 12:45 PM   #1
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1969 21' Globetrotter
Cambridge , Massachusetts
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elevator bolts? epoxy paint? Foam Insulation?

What makes elevator bolts unique? What I've been taking out of my 1969 Globe Trotter looks like a simple hex head bolt with a machine thread but no square shoulder below the head as would be expected for a stove bolt (or is it a carrage bolt)? I can see that you must make sure you not more than 3/4" without thread below the head. How about using a bolt with a very low profile rounded head so the recess in the plywood could be minimized (this I think is a carrage bolt). In addition to bolts, the aluminum c channel (sill piece) was held to the plywood with many, many, many philip head wood screws none of which come out without grinding the heads off. Is this common?

With regard to epoxy, when I go to Home Depot and Sherwin Williams dealers, all they seem to have in two parts is that garage floor system applied on concrete in quantities not less than one gallon. Is this what I should be using to paint the perimeter of my new 3/4" plywood floor? If not, what should I be looking for and where do I find it?

Finally, the floor of my trailer was insulated with foam which was a pain in the neck to get rid of. Is this common?
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Old 02-25-2009, 01:03 PM   #2
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Hi Joe,

The idea of the elevator bolt is that it has a very wide head to help distribute the load across a larger area of the floor, and prevent the bolt-head from pulling through as the floor and frame flex and stress.

For many eras of Airstreams, the channel is held down with those same screws, especially along the curved section. Mine were flat-head rather than Phillips head, even tougher to get out. They're a total pain to remove no doubt. If your floor is in sad shape, it's easier to break up the floor, pull it out in strands, and then turn those screws from the bottom using vice grips on the threads. I replaced them with hex-head screws using a socket driver to screw them in, and also a steel washer with a neoprene layer bonded to the bottom to prevent corrosion between the steel washer and the aluminum channel.

I'll let others answer the epoxy question since I used another product for edge-sealing (Minwax wood hardener). But I suspect the epoxy they used was more like a marine epoxy, probably West System or something like that.

My insulation was all the yellow itchy stuff.

Good luck!

-Marcus
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Old 02-25-2009, 02:46 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by utee94 View Post
For many eras of Airstreams, the channel is held down with those same screws, especially along the curved section................ I replaced them with hex-head screws using a socket driver to screw them in, and also a steel washer with a neoprene layer bonded to the bottom to prevent corrosion between the steel washer and the aluminum channel..........

-Marcus
Marcus,

At the risk of hijacking this thread I would like to know what purpose the sheet metal screws served. They don't have much strength just screwed into the 3/4" plywood. I have always assumed they were used by the factory to temporarily line up the channels (walls) with the floor before the bolts were installed. IMHO - Once the hex bolts are installed through the wall channels and outriggers I am not sure the screws are necessary. I would be interested in everyone else's opinions.
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Old 02-25-2009, 03:00 PM   #4
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Just coat the the entire floor with vinyl epoxy the same type used in fiberglass lay ups.

The brand I used was Mas you may also find West brand.

No smell, walk on in 30 minutes

If it can float a boat it will keep your airstream going forever

Call Jamestown Marine in RI
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Old 01-07-2010, 09:33 PM   #5
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1960 24' Tradewind
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why there are extra screws in the J-channels

Quote:
Originally Posted by vhord View Post
Marcus,

At the risk of hijacking this thread I would like to know what purpose the sheet metal screws served. They don't have much strength just screwed into the 3/4" plywood. I have always assumed they were used by the factory to temporarily line up the channels (walls) with the floor before the bolts were installed. IMHO - Once the hex bolts are installed through the wall channels and outriggers I am not sure the screws are necessary. I would be interested in everyone else's opinions.
as an engineer, and currently replacing that very curved channel, I have an idea what the screws are for.. The channel on mine isn't continuous, as it is bent into the curve, the channel is cut to relieve the stress of bending. The outer shell and inner panes fasten to the channel. Wind, road vibration etc. will try to pull the channel upwards(downwards isn't such a problem). these upwards forces are transfered to the screws and then to the floor. the straight sections don't need as many screws because they are not cut. the downwards forces are just transferred to the floor directly by the channel vertical.
Its also possible that its just a fabrication technique to hold the bent channel into place during assembly.
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