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Old 06-22-2014, 03:32 PM   #15
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1972 31' Sovereign
Lake Elsinore , California
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Shell is up in the air and trailer is out from under it. Stripping the plywood and crap all off from it today and tomorrow.
Getting more and more scared as I look deeper and deeper into the chassis...rust is worse than I dreamed.
Is there a place to buy a new chassis or is fabbing your own up {or having a shop custom fab one} the only option?
for a 1972 31' Sovereign
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Old 06-22-2014, 03:54 PM   #16
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First please some pictures and second once you find a reputable welder have him or her assess the frame and what is needed. Sometimes we see totaled and they may see something that can be repaired better than original. If you want to see the omg response give Us a look!
Cliff
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Old 07-14-2014, 08:30 PM   #17
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1969 27' Overlander
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Hi I am new to the forums but I am getting ready to remove my shell from the frame. I was wondering two things about using the gantry approach. Can you provide further details about how the shell was braced prior to the lift and what lift points were used? And secondly how did you support the shell and secure it when it was on the ground? I will be doing my work outside and don't want the shell to become airborne.
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Old 07-15-2014, 08:38 AM   #18
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Typically when lifting a shell with a gantry system, you remove the fore and aft vent lids, and all lights, fan shrouds, and AC ceiling unit so that the ceiling is completely flat. You then position a gantry frame over each of the vent holes and run a chain hoist down into the hole. Get a 4x4 or 6x4 beam that runs from the fore-most rib to the rear-most rib, and attach the hoists to this beam. You then simply lift against the beam, and the beam picks up the shell from the center of the ceiling. No additional bracing is required. If you have your inner skins in place during the lift, you might want to wrap your lift beam in old towels or something to keep it from abrading the ceiling.

Once the shell is on the ground, if you are worried about it blowing away in a strong wind, then stake it down in whatever way your creativity dictates. You might use some of those screw-in anchors that people use to anchor those fabric tent-sheds, and run webbing straps up the wall, through the window, and down the inside wall, and to the anchor.
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Old 07-16-2014, 05:17 PM   #19
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Belegedhel thank you for the additional information. I stripped the interior including the inner skins but I am planning to leave the windows in and the door closed when I lift the shell. Is that the correct approach? Additionally, what I was concerned about is that if I set the shell on the ground it appears just from looking at it that I could potentially damage the bottom of the shell from its own weight. Thus, I was wondering if I needed to install some boards around the bottom of the shell to support it side to side and front to back so that it has something to rest on while on the ground and it doesn't change shape.
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Old 07-16-2014, 05:34 PM   #20
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Belegedhel thank you for the additional information. I stripped the interior including the inner skins but I am planning to leave the windows in and the door closed when I lift the shell. Is that the correct approach? Additionally, what I was concerned about is that if I set the shell on the ground it appears just from looking at it that I could potentially damage the bottom of the shell from its own weight. Thus, I was wondering if I needed to install some boards around the bottom of the shell to support it side to side and front to back so that it has something to rest on while on the ground and it doesn't change shape.
You are correct. You will fold the bottom of the skins if you just set it on the ground. No need to "install" anything, just put some 2x4s or something under the ribs and c-channel around the perimter. You can gently place it down using the chain hoists, while adjusting the 2x4s to be under the appropriate areas.
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Old 07-16-2014, 05:38 PM   #21
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1958 17' Pacer
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Damascus , Oregon
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Hi Kariber,

I have a 15 foot shell and used two 2x6 stringers across with diagonal stabilizers. The was more than enough, and I just used 2x4s to hold it up.
You'd probably need 4 for yours, and if your using the gantry system you won't need to use the diagonals.

cheap and easy.





You can see mine was held up with 2 more 2x6's attached to a wall and some 4x4 legs.

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Old 07-16-2014, 07:09 PM   #22
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You can see the blocks of wood I used to place under the ribs and keep the shell from folding underneath. In the pic of the view of the front, the extra wood laying out on the floor is from when I was mocking up the size of a future lounge in the place of the original gaucho.
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Old 07-16-2014, 07:38 PM   #23
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Just as a precaution I would look at some of the shell off threads and would brace the inside of the shell as it is rather flimsy without the c channel or the frame as others have found the hard way! There are many ways which are not expensive to brace the shell the depending on the soil where the shell will sit it would be best not to sit it directly on the ground. I am not a pro or all that experienced but that ounce of prevention and the fact that you do have an investment to protect! This is just my opinion and please take it at cost and think about it!
Cliff


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Old 07-16-2014, 07:46 PM   #24
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My shell was actually extremely rigid. I was really surprised... I did not claim this from my own wisdom, as I took the advice from the pro, Colin Hyde, and did not brace anything. His comment to me was that it was not necessary, and in fact added unnecessary weight. The factory assembles them the same way- with cranes that lift from the vent holes.

After my experience doing this, I cannot imagine the work of bracing the inside. There are several recent threads going where others are doing the same with same results...

Lift and go- dont be skeered!
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Old 07-17-2014, 06:33 AM   #25
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Rather error on the side of safety then expense have seen 1thread where the shell buckled but I do not believe damaged.
Cliff


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Old 08-03-2014, 11:24 AM   #26
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1972 31' Sovereign
Valparaiso , Indiana
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Belegedhel View Post
Typically when lifting a shell with a gantry system, you remove the fore and aft vent lids, and all lights, fan shrouds, and AC ceiling unit so that the ceiling is completely flat. You then position a gantry frame over each of the vent holes and run a chain hoist down into the hole. Get a 4x4 or 6x4 beam that runs from the fore-most rib to the rear-most rib, and attach the hoists to this beam. You then simply lift against the beam, and the beam picks up the shell from the center of the ceiling. No additional bracing is required. If you have your inner skins in place during the lift, you might want to wrap your lift beam in old towels or something to keep it from abrading the ceiling.



Once the shell is on the ground, if you are worried about it blowing away in a strong wind, then stake it down in whatever way your creativity dictates. You might use some of those screw-in anchors that people use to anchor those fabric tent-sheds, and run webbing straps up the wall, through the window, and down the inside wall, and to the anchor.

The distance from my fore most vent to aft most is about 20 feet. It's 12 feet from middle vent to aft vent hole. Do you thing I could lift from middle and aft or should I go fore to aft?


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Old 08-03-2014, 11:40 AM   #27
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Go fore and aft.


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Old 08-04-2014, 09:18 AM   #28
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1972 31' Sovereign
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I could be wrong but I believe the method could be a 10' 4x4 or 4x6 support by a chain through the fore vent and then a 10' 4x4/4x6 with a chain through the rear vent which would give you good support and eliminate the balancing act a single chain in the center would create. Side benefit would also be not having to maneuver a 20' long hunk of lumber.
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