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Old 09-14-2013, 10:20 AM   #1
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Replacing Floor - Rot

Does the body have to be supported to remove the plywood floor, Im new to repairing airstreams and I am curious if the floor can be taken out and the body not fall down around my ears while I'm inside of it
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Old 09-14-2013, 11:30 AM   #2
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The MH that I replaced the floor in recently had a C shaped channel that the plywood was inserted into; taking out the plywood didn't cause any deformation with the channel at all. HOWEVER that being said, pull out a section of say six inches of flooring out of the channel to gauge the thickness and strength of your channel.

I have replaced my floor with this product on the outside where damage from leaks can occur.

Coosa Composites, LLC - Manufacture of high-density, fiberglass-reinforced polyurethane foam panels

I also used a 11 ply marine plywood for the rest of the floor where sustained moisture wouldn't be an issue.

Yes these products do cost more than regular ply or OSB BUT I never have to worry about rot, mildew, fungus or rot ever again. I would also surmize that it will increase the resale value of my coach should I sell it.
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Old 09-14-2013, 01:35 PM   #3
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What really angers me is that we paid a hefty price for these toys and one would expect better longer lasting quality..... ;0(
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Old 09-19-2013, 06:20 AM   #4
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Good morning.
Is that particle board used for the floor?
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Old 09-19-2013, 06:57 AM   #5
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The leaks in the first post are where there are gaps in the C-channel at the bottom of the wall. The gaps can be bridged and drains can be put in to drain the c-channel before it gets to the floor. The bottoms line is this rot was caused by leaks. You don't know where the leaks are because the water drains down the wall between the two skins and then hits the C-channel that acts like a gutter and funnels the water to the nearest gap. There are gaps at all 4 corners and usually to the right and left of the door frame. OSB can be stronger than plywood but it does not like to be in water for years at a time. The extra surface area gives rot many surfaces to enter the wood. Also once the glue comes loose, you have nothing. With plywood, you still have some strength even if the layers are not glued together.

Perry
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Old 09-19-2013, 08:10 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Isuzusweet View Post
The MH that I replaced the floor in recently had a C shaped channel that the plywood was inserted into;
I think in 71 the C channel sits on top of the floor panels. The floor panels are not inserted into the C channel.
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Old 09-19-2013, 08:18 AM   #7
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After you remove the interior skins (if not already done)...before you release the c-channel and start to remove the rotted floor, you would do well to cross brace the shell with some 2x4s or 2x6s. When you release the c-channel, the shell will tend to flex, and there is a chance that ribs could slip off the frame, causing the shell to shift badly (don't ask how I know). Bracing the shell will also help you when it comes to fitting the new floor.
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Old 09-19-2013, 08:37 AM   #8
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Coosa products are a little pricey compared to plywood but if you are restoring a vintage camper and don't want any rot issues ever this is the way to go. They have a product call bluewater 26 that is structural quality. You will save about 100lbs on weight compared to plywood for a 26ft trailer. Cost is about triple what plywood is but NO ROT ISSUES EVER.You don't have to spend hours sealing and still wondering when you wood is going to get wet and rot.What is that worth? Coosa Composites, LLC - Manufacture of high-density, fiberglass-reinforced polyurethane foam panels
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Old 09-19-2013, 09:02 AM   #9
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In My '77 Safari the plywood sits on top of the frame and the C channel sits on top of the Plywood. The Bolts pass through the C channel, Plywood and frame to hold the Shell on.

I would replace one section at a time. I recently replaced a piece 12" across the back. The shell did drop on to the frame and I had to use a prybar to lift the shell and slide the new plywood in. If you remove all the floor and bolts I would worry that the shell could fall off the frame.
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Old 09-19-2013, 09:11 AM   #10
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In my '73, along the sides, there is an aluminum channel that encompasses the edge of the plywood, with a flange sticking straight up that the shell rivets to. On the ends, it is a "U" channel looking up that just bolts down to sandwich the plywood between it and the frame. The question is, are you planning to replace all of the floor, or just a section? If you are planning to do the whole floor, then I would recommend you bite the bullet from the start, and just plan to lift the shell completely off the frame.

good luck!
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Old 09-19-2013, 01:07 PM   #11
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Old 09-19-2013, 01:38 PM   #12
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I'm doing a floor rot repair on a 73 Streamline. I found some pretty good leaks in the front. I am in the precess of sealing the seams and have got the leaks on one side pretty well stopped. The leaks look like the water traveled down the inside of the wall to the metal channel that holds the ribs, and then around the wall floor joint causing water damage to the floor and paneling.

The rot is not extensive enough to require replacing the floor itself. I am fixing the water damage with penetrating epoxy resin, epoxy filler and new inside wall paneling.

What do you think about drilling a few drain holes to contain and drain the leaks if they reoccur?
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Old 09-19-2013, 03:19 PM   #13
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Old 09-19-2013, 05:42 PM   #14
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This is great timing. I just bought a 29 foot 1989 Excella yesterday from Arizona. My inspection showed floor rot behind the bed about 8 inches worth across the back. I was surprised to find this since it spent its entire life in Arizona. Great shape except for the rot. I was looking for a project and replacing the carpet and vinyl with something updated was my plan. I don't pick it up for another 3 weeks and spent most of the day looking at the floor & frame forum. I know this thread is about older than mine but any advice would be welcome.
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