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Old 06-30-2010, 02:17 PM   #1
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1976 Argosy 24
Excelsior , Minnesota
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Floor replacement

I got my '76 Argosy out of a decade long storage and am putting it back in camping shape. Pulled up the carpet and found rotted and very wet floor underneath the water tank and pump. Wet insulation below. I would like to replace one and a portion of a second section of the wood floor. I have found local suppliers of MDO for $45.00/sheet and Marine Plywood (high grade imported) for $91.50/sheet. Am leaning toward MDO for cost - any observations or comments from the more experienced folks would be appreciated.

This is a much bigger job than I had anticipated: water pump leaking & has to be replaced, range surface rusted and had to be powder coated, top vents needed sealing, refrigerator needed both thermocouple and electric heating unit, radio antenna needed replacing, range exhaust fan needed replacing, all clearance lights needed replacing ... & more. Advice on the floor would be greatly appreciated. Was up hours last night reading the really superior re manufacturing some folks have done to their floors. I'm a disabled vet with limited resources & no thought of it lasting another 35 years.

Thanks
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Old 06-30-2010, 02:55 PM   #2
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Don't cut corners on the cost. The floor is the weak point in all Airstreams and if you are going to fix it fix it right or you may do it again.

If that trailer was stored for 10 years and you still found wet material you have a leak somewhere also to look for.
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Old 06-30-2010, 03:48 PM   #3
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I bought the 8-ply marine grade and was disappointed - no voids in them, true, but many many soft spots where the fasteners crushed too deeply (in my opinion) while trying for a standard torque across all of them. If I had it to do again I'd be looking at high grade construction plywood or sub-floor plywood meant to be somewhat moisture resistant when above a crawl space - then seal both sides and edges!
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Old 06-30-2010, 06:36 PM   #4
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I used AC grade exterior ply for my 68 Trade Wind (rear bath area was a total mess). Plywood today is not the plywood of yesterday. For extra protection in case of future leaks I sealed the edges and top and bottom in from the edge about 8 inches with West System epoxy resin. I used 2 coats. Then I put 3 coats of exterior Marine Urethane Spar varnish on the rest of the top and bottom. I'm confident that the new floor will outlast me.
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Old 06-30-2010, 06:41 PM   #5
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We used BCX plywood on our new floor. Got it on sale for $15 a sheet at Menards. We sealed the edges and underside with heavy duty primer. Marine grade would be nice but we didn't have the money for that either. MDF falls apart too easily when wet - wouldn't try it.

Kay
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Old 06-30-2010, 08:12 PM   #6
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1978 31' Excella 500
Tuttle , Oklahoma
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MDF is not what you want to use. It will not stand up for flooring.
Any exterior plywood will do a better job. Marine grade is supposed to be without voids but as another poster stated it it always so.
BC exterior ply will be plenty good enough and even CD if you want to fix some surface imperfections before applying your finish covering.
The real trick is matching the thickness of the new plywood with the old. You may have to use a belt sander to smooth the edge from new to old.
Seal all edges with fiberglass resin or West's epoxy and you should be good for years.
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Old 06-30-2010, 08:39 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Finch View Post
I got my '76 Argosy out of a decade long storage and am putting it back in camping shape. Pulled up the carpet and found rotted and very wet floor underneath the water tank and pump. Wet insulation below. I would like to replace one and a portion of a second section of the wood floor. I have found local suppliers of MDO for $45.00/sheet and Marine Plywood (high grade imported) for $91.50/sheet. Am leaning toward MDO for cost - any observations or comments from the more experienced folks would be appreciated.

This is a much bigger job than I had anticipated: water pump leaking & has to be replaced, range surface rusted and had to be powder coated, top vents needed sealing, refrigerator needed both thermocouple and electric heating unit, radio antenna needed replacing, range exhaust fan needed replacing, all clearance lights needed replacing ... & more. Advice on the floor would be greatly appreciated. Was up hours last night reading the really superior re manufacturing some folks have done to their floors. I'm a disabled vet with limited resources & no thought of it lasting another 35 years.

Thanks
Steve

The next best to marine plywood is 3/4" AC plywood. I paid $44.00 a sheet, a few voids but very solid stuff, happy with the selection. AC plywood is glued together with a water proof glue.

toastie
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