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Old 06-17-2009, 04:29 PM   #155
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the original skin is .032. Why not go with the original thickness? Airparts inc sell that as long as you want.
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Old 06-17-2009, 05:54 PM   #156
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As soon as I (fingers crossed) get the shell back down and it all fits I'll place an order for sheet. Maybe you'll are right on the money; I do read that 040 would work well but getting 16s would be one less headache.

I got the all aluminum large flange rivets in today so the belly pan can't take me much longer. I picked up nice large flange pop rivets a few weeks ago but the mandrel is steel so I'd rather not use them (yet).

I do have a bit of an apology to make though, I incorrectly used 1/2 a tube of PL200 and should have used PL300. PL200 does not work well with sheet insulation! Hope no-one is following along because it makes a mess..
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Old 06-17-2009, 07:19 PM   #157
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I had to subscribe like everyone else. I need to inspiration to get back onto completing mine. Nice to see all of us frame-off folks going thru the same stuff though.
Great work Truck!
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Old 06-17-2009, 07:23 PM   #158
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My bad, I can get 040" but only a full coil, now I just need 827 shell off buddies to set up a group buy.
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Old 06-17-2009, 09:59 PM   #159
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Quote:
Originally Posted by truckasaurus View Post
My bad, I can get 040" but only a full coil, now I just need 827 shell off buddies to set up a group buy.
Are you ordering skin wider than 48"? If not, you can get any length you want from Airparts, 0.032 or 0.040 or almost anything thin enough to roll, just as Frank says.

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Old 06-17-2009, 10:12 PM   #160
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Maybe I'm going crazy, I thought 12' was the longest in 040". I'll be calling them in the morning. Thanks guys.
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Old 06-18-2009, 04:43 AM   #161
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Hey Truck, you avoiding my question? Why .040? The original skin is .032. Personally I do not see what you are gaining in going thicker. Sometimes I am a slow on the uptake.
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Old 06-18-2009, 09:57 AM   #162
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Hey Truck, you avoiding my question? Why .040? The original skin is .032. Personally I do not see what you are gaining in going thicker. Sometimes I am a slow on the uptake.
When I did the skin on AIRSTREAMGYPSY's Bambi, AEROWOOD recommended 0.040. The down side is cost and very small weight gain. The up side is reduced risk of an oil can wrinkle, possible increased damage tolerance, and much better "feel" when handling. I think Airstream used 0.032 as an acceptable compromise on cost, but it's a very small delta in cost for a vintage restoration project, compared to all the other costs of keeping a Vintage Airstream in shape. I think the upgrade is well worth it. 'Course, we were dealing with only a 4'x4' sheet...

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Old 06-18-2009, 10:08 AM   #163
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Hi Frank, Zep nailed it. I think the gist is that the 040" is easier to handle, and will stay flatter or hold a smoother curve compared to lighter gauges. But it is about 8 oz heavier per linear foot and is harder to roll for shipping.
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Old 06-18-2009, 10:41 AM   #164
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I went out and gave my panels the 'thumb test' where I pushed lightly against new skin and old. Same front panels, opposite sides. I don't doubt Frank's information that the old skin is .032, but the new skin feels thinner when I push with my thumb. Maybe the older skin is slightly stiffer because of age or difference in alloy. If you want the feel to be equal, 0.40 is what I would use if I had to do it again. (not that I want to do it again soon. )

Say hi to Airparts for me, I was very happy with their service.
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Old 06-18-2009, 09:14 PM   #165
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Hot metal

Yup, I keep wanting to post that the belly is complete but it still needs another few hours, plus channel rivets too! (they're still in the mail).

Just some shots of the rear skin and the first flat section installed today.

I had to use some 040" on one curved section behind the wheels, at least it looks the same (to me). Weirdly every corner seems to get progressively worse, or maybe the first was beginners luck

The BAL jacks arrived via UPS, to a local hotel, I guess that makes me rural..
I'll pick them up tomorrow and get them on ready for the shell down day.

So todays lesson is a toss up between "drill swarf being subject to gravity and it's very hot" and "not to roll in PL300, it's sticks to T-shirts". Still it could be worse last weeks lesson was do not get epoxy in your hair.

I'm also curious to know if anyone has fallen asleep under their Airstream because it was pretty tempting today.
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Old 06-19-2009, 12:23 PM   #166
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I see in your pictures, one, nice work being done, but also, you drilling many holes to hold your belly skin on the channel. Remember that your shell will overlap the belly skin and it too will need rivet holes. If you are using new skin around the bottom you may be alright, but it will be hard to drill the holes from the inside. If you are using the existing shell skin the chances of the the holes matching up are slim. The original only had a sample of rivets holding the belley skin up (the dreaded hidden rivets) until the shell was put on and then rivets all he way around were used.

You may have plans for all this and I may be off base, but hopefully I may be heading you off in drilling too many.
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Old 06-19-2009, 12:40 PM   #167
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A good point and I have gone a little fastener crazy, but I have a plan, kind of..

I'm going to flush rivet the belly pan on using only as many rivets as I need, marking their location once complete. Once the shell goes back on my current plan uses mostly new skin so I should be OK. Looking back at my old belly pan it was riveted about every 4 inches on the straight sections and one or two in each tab or the corners. The worst rivets for hiding were those on the corners which were overlapped by the straight side sheets. I still need to pick up a pancake drill attachment or use the strap duplicator from Spruce if it arrives in time.

I did think about using aluminum tape to hold the belly in situ but I think it would have been too tricky.

Your point is very valid though; I should have used less holes on the straight sections.
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Old 06-19-2009, 08:10 PM   #168
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Stabilization

It rained most of the day so all I got done was the rear BAL jacks this afternoon.

They seem OK and came with the feet attached. (no mounting hardware though). They make the floor rock solid even though they detract from the smooth flow of the belly, (in my opinion). I would have liked to install them 24" further forward but my tank set up precludes this.

For the keen observers the 4x4 block was necessary as the trailer is on very uneven and sloped ground. Rest assured I wouldn't try it if the chassis wasn't already very well supported.
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