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Old 01-08-2006, 08:33 PM   #1
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Unhappy Need floor repair options on my 69 Sovereign

Hi everyone,

First post here. I own a 1969 Sovereign International. It is in decent shape except for the floor in the bathroom. Water has run from the ledge around the tub onto the floor and cause the floor to get soft right at the point where the floor meets the wall for the sink. Now, the best I can tell, it is ok under the tub as well as under the toilet and only goes back into the trailer about a foot or so. It is a small section that is rotting. Now, I need some advice as to fixing this problem without pulling the interior out of the trailer.
Everything is in excellent shape except for the one piece of floor. Thanks for any help,

Roger
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Old 01-09-2006, 06:57 PM   #2
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Roger,

As long as you can access the area where the floor needs to be repaired you should be able to just replace the part that is rotted. The general idea is to cut out all of the bad part into where you have solid wood. You then add plywood splice pieces under the floor where the joint will be. Use glue and screws to attach the splines. Cut a piece of new plywood to fit the hole and attach it to the splines with screws and glue. If the area is large enough you can add some self-taping/self-drilling screws to hold the new plywood to the frame. Look at the rotted part to see where it is attached.

Hope this gets you started. Feel free to ask more questions too. Someone on the forums will very likely answer them.

Malcolm
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Old 01-16-2006, 09:48 PM   #3
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Hi Malconium,

The plywood is rotted right under the sink and around the closet flange of the toilet. Looks maybe like 6 inches maybe 7 tops from the end of the board. It is not rotted under the tub. The toilet leaked water into the floor due to the closet flange being cracked. I am going to replace the flange and also wanted to replace the wood. Your idea is very good. What kind of glue do you recommend? And also, do you happen to know where the first frame crossmember would be under the floor? Any suggestions on how to cut it out? Thanks for your help! I have done work in trailers before, just not an Airstream and one in as good a condition as ours. I want to replace the floor covering once I get it repaired. Thanks again,

Roger
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Old 01-25-2006, 12:17 AM   #4
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Roger,

On my unit the original floor had 4' wide sheets of plywood set crosswise. There is always a crossmember at the 4' points. The 4' increments start on mine from the front of the trailer. My interior is right around 27' inside. This means that the last sheet is about 3' wide. In general the crossmembers are on 24" centers. There is some small amount of variation in that to fit various things in but that is the general rule. The crossmembers are steel and I would not expect that you would actually have to cut one out unless it is rusted too badly. What I meant was that you can cut out the plywood above the crossmembers and if the piece you cut out was sitting on a crossmember you could attach the new piece of plywood to the crossmember with the self-taping/self-drilling screws. Also you should be able to get a clue as to where the crossmembers are by looking for screws or bolts through the plywood. If the floor covering is still in place you might try using a stud finder to give you an idea where they are if you need to know before you start removing the bad floor. Any good waterproof wood working glue would work just fine. I like TightBond for one.

Malcolm

P.S. Sorry it took me a while to get back to you on this. Feel free to send me a personal message if I am not getting back to you fast enough.
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Old 01-28-2006, 06:53 PM   #5
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Hi Malconium

Hi,
I looked at the trailer today. I need to replace about 1 foot by 2foot section that goes just in front of the sink and around where the toilet sits. Problem I have is this. The black tank is going to be a concern. I won't be able to re-enforce a section of plywood in that area. Question for you now. The area is really small. It has some rot in it but not just totally demolished. Could it be possible to just leave and re-enforce the top of that area with a thin piece of galvanized metal and attach it to with small screws? It would be hidden under the carpet and I thought it might be easier than cutting the plywood and having to figure out a way to re-enforce it. I originally thought about your idea of cutting a small strip to screw between the old and new plywood boards, but unfortunately, I did not realize the black tank would be in the way. Whats your thought on such a small area and doing this?

Thanks for your help,

Roger
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Old 01-28-2006, 07:03 PM   #6
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You may want to look at products like this: http://www.rotdoctor.com/
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Old 02-01-2006, 01:53 PM   #7
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Hi Roger,
I don't have a trailer but am looking at one that has a rotted plywood floor so I have been reading all these posts.
Just wanted to chime in on your floor problem. Titebond is not waterproof only water resistant and will fail when subjected to long peroids of water. Gorilla glue and liquid nails is better and epoxy is the best for water, but that being said screws will hold it together without glue.
About your idea of the metal sheet over the top, you could get aluminum plate in 1/4" thickness, cut out the bad plywood and route out a lip in the good plywood 1/4" deep, then countersink the alum for some stainless wood screws and attach to the good plywood. This would give help with clearing the blackwater tank. I suppose you will run into problems if rot runs to wall but i think you could make it work. 1/4" aluminum plate would give you the floor strength you want and it's not too heavy.

good luck
makarov
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Old 02-01-2006, 08:52 PM   #8
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Hi Malkov,

Where would I obtain Aluminum Plate? I have another week to work on this dilemma.

Roger
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Old 02-02-2006, 04:33 PM   #9
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If you decide to go with aluminum plate one place that you might try is Metal Supermarkets. The following site shows that they are in Dallas, Fort Worth and Houston. I don't know if any of these places would be close enough to you though.

http://data.gointranet.com/cgi-bin/u...tal/search.cgi

Another approach that could work too might be the following:

1.) Cut out the area that is bad.

2.) Route out a lip around the edges in the same way as suggested for the aluminum plate but make it about 3/8" deep. Make the lip at least 1" or so wide.

3.) Cut a new piece of plywood big enough to fit all the way out to the edges of the lip. Route the edges of the new piece so that its top fits flush with the old floor and sits on top of the lip.

4.) Attach the new piece using an appropriate glue and screws short enough to make sure they don't puncture the black water tank. I suggest decking screws about 1-1/4" long.

Alternatively you could cut out a larger piece so that you get past where the black water tank is and find space to put in a plywood splice piece under the joint.

Malcolm
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Old 02-02-2006, 04:46 PM   #10
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malcolm,

do you suggest doing this even for floor that fits under the shell? I need to fix the floor under the service door in the back, and am looking for some thing other than fixture remove and replacement with wood method.

John
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Old 02-05-2006, 01:24 PM   #11
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Hi everyone,

Using screws 1-1/4 long will puncture the black tank. It is only 3/4 plywood and the tank is butted to the bottom of the plywood. After more review of the wood. I don't think it is bad enough to cut out. Plus, I am afraid of weakening the rear floor and have no way to support it. I am going to try an idea I came up with and will post if it works..

Roger
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Old 02-05-2006, 02:20 PM   #12
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A Full Inspection is Probably in Order

Roger,

If it were me, I'd get up underneath, remove the bellypan and have a good look. Having replaced two rear floor sections ('72 Overlander rear bath, '73 Sovereign center bath), I found that the frame rust/disintegration was actually worse on the Sovereign, which had the better floor.

Nobody likes doing this, and I've certainly had my fill of it, but with a 30 year old coach, I'd rather be sure.

I found that the black tank supports on the Overlander were definitely going to fail in the near future and the Sovereign's last frame crossmember was nearly gone from rust (no real sign at all from above). (see repair)

Sorry to not be more positive, but I'd assume all old Airstreams have rotten rear floor sections (and rusted frames) unless I knew for certain otherwise.
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Old 02-08-2006, 01:15 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rocat1997
Hi everyone,

Using screws 1-1/4 long will puncture the black tank. It is only 3/4 plywood and the tank is butted to the bottom of the plywood. After more review of the wood. I don't think it is bad enough to cut out. Plus, I am afraid of weakening the rear floor and have no way to support it. I am going to try an idea I came up with and will post if it works..

Roger
Roger,

My mistake about the screw length. I must have been thinking about the spline situation when I suggested that size screw.

Malcolm
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