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Old 08-10-2009, 08:11 PM   #1
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Lots of rotten floor

Well, we knew when we got the 34' that it had floor issues in the front, BUT it is SLIGHTLY worse than I thought. I had hoped for a 2' x 3' section but there is enough damage to justify a full 6' section, side to side.
Tomorrow I'll finish the stripping of the interior from the door forward and start pulling the lower panels. I can't see where the curb side lower panel has a joint so I suspect I'll just roll it back toward the dinete.

The good part is it's only 1/5 of the floor that has issues, if this was a 16' trailer it would be almost 1/2 of the floor!
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Old 08-11-2009, 12:19 PM   #2
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Removal complete

This morning I removed everything that was bolted or rivited in the way of the floor removal. It looks like a 4' long section will get me back to good solid wood. I am amazed at the lack of bolts or screws that hold the front together. 10 bolts and 2 wood screws are all that goes thru the wall/floor joint in the first 4 - 5 feet of the trailer. I think I can access everything needed from below by removing the banana wraps and peeling down the belly skin.
Now for the bad part, working outside of the airconditioned interior!
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Old 08-11-2009, 01:13 PM   #3
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A 91, to me, would be just broken in. What caused all this rot in the first place? I assume part of the answer is particle board vs. real plywood.
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Old 08-11-2009, 01:24 PM   #4
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I assume part of the answer is particle board vs. real plywood.
Agreed, as particle board more prone to moisture damage - need to determine where the water was coming in that created this mess and repair.

What motivated Airstream to use OSB for the flooring on certain models? We have a '96 34' Ltd and it definitely has 5/8" tongue & groove marine plywood throughout the floor - we know, as we ripped out all the old carpeting recently!
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Old 08-11-2009, 02:28 PM   #5
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What motivated Airstream to use OSB for the flooring on certain models?
$$$$$$$$$$$$. My $.02 worth
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Old 08-11-2009, 04:22 PM   #6
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Yup, OSB flooring in one huge piece as best I can tell. Once I pull the carpet I'll be able to see exactly how big the pieces are. Here's the bummer - 19/32 thick and milled down at the edges to 1/2 inch. Geeze that ain't much meat!

I got the curbside portion pulled today, the few bolts that were there are cut and removed, except the one big one that goes into the front of the frame.

Now I need to find a source for 19/32 or 1/2 Marine ply in my area, get some POR and start the reassembly.
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Old 08-11-2009, 04:25 PM   #7
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A 91, to me, would be just broken in. What caused all this rot in the first place? I assume part of the answer is particle board vs. real plywood.
Owning a '77 that we use on a regular basis, it seems odd to me also that the '91 is in worse shape. The damage was caused my leaks, no doubt. With all the rain clouds and thunder outside, I may get to look for the leak in a moment!
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Old 08-11-2009, 04:38 PM   #8
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Gees, what a mess. Looks like my '73. Your frame looks to be in good shape, is that just surface rust? I didn't use marine grade ply on the new floor. I used regular ply, epoxied the edges in about 6 to 8 inches, then varathaned the rest (top & bottom). Do you have a way to mill down the 3/4 to fit the 1/2 channel? I'll be following along to see how you do it.

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Old 08-11-2009, 06:03 PM   #9
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I wonder if there is anything you use as a proflactor, so to speak, to keep the rest of the stuff from going south or at least prolonging the inevitable. Penetrating epoxy resin?
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Old 08-11-2009, 06:30 PM   #10
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Isnt this floor rot thing so discouraging? I used to think about airstream as the all aluminum trailer that cant rust and if it leaks so what.. Its all aluminum. Obviously I was very new to the game. This actually seems to be the achilles heal of the airstream? Glad you have a plan and found the leaks. Its going to look great when its finished.

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Old 08-12-2009, 07:46 PM   #11
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Stinky no more

I ran by the Big Orange Box on the way home, no 19/32 external grade ply but I did pick up a sheet of luan for a pattern and an assortment of pvc fittings...see if you can guess what this is ?

Hint - the previous owner left me a little present that I really wanted to get rid of .
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Old 08-12-2009, 07:48 PM   #12
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Pic.
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Old 08-13-2009, 11:20 AM   #13
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Deeded you some Black Hills properties did he?
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Old 08-13-2009, 12:22 PM   #14
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Plywood, OSB or chip board... you get it wet often enough and it will eventually rot. In my completely unqualified personal opinion, the key is keeping the floor dry. That's we won't do anything carpet in our finished Overlander. We'll do a floating wood floor or a composite material. My goal is to keep water away from the subfloor and I've always felt carpets and pads "held" moisture. As for the idea of sealing the plywood, I concur. We'll probably do a couple of coats of spar varnish before we lay the flooring.
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Old 08-13-2009, 08:25 PM   #15
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Deeded you some Black Hills properties did he?
Uh, yup....and my sewer cleanout is 6" up hill so with $17 worth of pvc fittings and a little review of the Sewer Solutions web site...a home made version works great!
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Old 08-13-2009, 08:40 PM   #16
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Floor progress

No progress last night, so tonight I really wanted to get something done. I started by cutting a 4 x 8 sheet of luan into 4 x 4 sq.
Then I layed it over the hole in my floor, evened it up and used a modified version of the stick copy method -
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f36/...pes-29321.html

I used a round lid to stick into the C channel and then traced the back edge onto the luan. This was repeated in as many places as I could. I also marked some position notes on 'pattern A'. Click on the third photo to see the traces from the lid edge
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Old 08-13-2009, 08:45 PM   #17
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Pattern A was then placed on top of the 4 x 4 sheet thats going to be the master pattern, and the position notes were used to square up two pieces of luan.

I then layed the lid on pattern A and traced the lids outer edge onto the master pattern. Finally a stiff hose helped blend all of the traces into the actual profile of the C channel.

On edit - I just noticed Mac has his head stuck thru the kitty door and is looking at us in the 1st photo
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Old 08-16-2009, 12:53 PM   #18
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I finally got done cutting grass and can spend some time on the 34'er. I jigsawed around the line, cut a slot for the harness and FINALLY got the bolts cut that were beneath the battery boxes . The pattern needed a final tweek with a belt sander and it slipped right in place. I pulled out the left 1/2 of the front floor, flipped the pattern over and slid it in that side. One minor difference between the two sides and it's probably due to my inability to get a square cut in the original floor. The difference is marked on the pattern and now its time for some plywood!
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Old 08-17-2009, 07:24 PM   #19
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Plywood

I made it by Lowes this afternoon, a roll of insulation, 3 saw blades, a 19/32 piece of exterior ply and $87 later...

I traced the pattern onto the new ply and cut JUST INSIDE of the mark. The pattern was a really tight fit so this gave me just a bit more clearance. I also avoided the temptation to better round off the trace - trust the pattern...it fit so I didn't second guess it!

All done and the only thing left is a plywood G String Bikini
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A honkin' long 34' named AlumaTherapy https://www.airforums.com/forums/f20...num-54749.html
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Old 08-18-2009, 09:01 PM   #20
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No progress today other than rubbing a bald spot into my head trying to figure out a solution for this problem. The C channel is pinched where it lays on the front end of the frame rails. I tried prying it open but nothing is budging. I will try putting some support blocks under the main frame rails 1/2 way forward of the axles then retract the power jack. I'm hoping the front of the frame will sag enough to open the c channel enough to insert the ply. POR15 is due here Thursday so I need to get these sections fitted!

I should have a chance in the morning, taking the day off to help our son during his mid day knee surgery...the bicycle won, the knee lost.
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