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Old 01-28-2018, 07:43 PM   #1
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Shell on floor replacement question

Working on removing the old wood rot sub floor. Question for one of you Airstreamer that have removed and replaced there sub floor before with the shell on approach. Can you remove all of the plywood at the same time ? or is it better to remove and replace half the floor at a time ?

The weather looks good today and its my day off so time to work on the Airstream
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Old 01-28-2018, 08:10 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Toolmanbt View Post
Working on removing the old wood rot sub floor. Question for one of you Airstreamer that have removed and replaced there sub floor before with the shell on approach. Can you remove all of the plywood at the same time ? or is it better to remove and replace half the floor at a time ?

The weather looks good today and its my day off so time to work on the Airstream
Id say thats a case by case decision.
First thing, if you dont plan on moving the trailer mid resto is to level the trailer really well. Fore, mid and aft. Front to back and side to side. Secure that, then begin your adventure. Little blocks about 2-3 square are nice (same thickness as the subfloor you removed is) to put under the points when a vertical run lands on a piece of the frame. Temporary of course.

Lots ahead for you!
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Old 01-28-2018, 09:48 PM   #3
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I replaced it in halves, back half first. Removed flooring from the middle to aft then replaced aft to middle. Front the same way, middle to forward the replaced front to rear. I unbolted the entire trailer from the shell and the shell would flex out enough to replace the new floor section in one piece.
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Old 01-29-2018, 04:08 AM   #4
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I saved some small pieces of the old subfloor to use to clamp between shell and outriggers.
Just to keep things where I wanted them after the floor was out.
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Old 01-29-2018, 11:27 AM   #5
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I started at the back and worked my way to the front, repairing the frame where needed, painting the frame, then replacing the floor as I went. I left small pieces of floor in place at the C-Channel to help secure the shell to the frame because I was working outside and wanted to make sure there wouldn't be damage from wind.

Iansk suggestion of making sure the floor is level is important! I had it supported front back and middle and made sure everything stayed straight and level as I worked
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Old 01-29-2018, 01:12 PM   #6
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It's a good idea to make the corner pieces of the belly pan and install them before bolting down the new floor. Wrap the new aluminum around the C channel then install the new floor. Remember that AS built these from the bottom up then flipped them over to install the interior.
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Old 01-30-2018, 09:29 AM   #7
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1/2" blocks between the shell and frame

1/2" blocks between the shell and frame and clamp in place for stabilizing the shell while replacing the plywood floor. Thanks so much for the advice, Iansk, Dingo Girl and Davidson Overlander.

Also Aerowood thanks for the advice on the half floor at a time, at this point I have three of the five pieces of plywood out. So I will stop for now and work on what I have removed. Frame cleaning, POR, holding tanks location and new axles.

And to figure out how and the timing of reversing the lap siding. (skin on top of the belly pan ) Looks like Aerowood and Vanster have already done this on there Airstream. Any advice on this ?

So I have some work to get done, just time and money.
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Old 01-30-2018, 10:33 AM   #8
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Hi BT, All,
This is great -- BT, thanks for posting the picture with the belly pan still on... I am following all of this with great interest as I am trying to tackle nearly the identical task. Thanks for all of the expertise that is shared here!

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Old 01-30-2018, 07:57 PM   #9
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The blocks between the body and the frame

The blocks between the body and the frame, thanks for the info.
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Old 01-31-2018, 09:23 AM   #10
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The blocks between the body and the frame, thanks for the info.


Why the 1/2 gap??
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Old 01-31-2018, 11:29 AM   #11
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We had taken the shell completely off and I media blasted the frame, repaired a few out riggers and then used POR to prevent more rust. I used marine plywood with 3 coats of epoxy and everywhere I cut a hole in the floor I went back and made sure the new cut was coated. The biggest problem we had was once the new tanks were in ( one fresh and one grey ) on either side of the axle, I had guessed on where to put the fillers holes and I forgot one. I bought ready made tanks from Ronco and they will spin weld anywhere you spec. Just make sure you know exactly how many and were. Adding a new outlet is tricky as us mortals cannot spin weld without taking the tank out. Another issue was that once we had the shell back on the gaps around the corners were really tight. It took hours and hours and hours and lots of tries to form the belly band corners ( per corner) . We did it at long last but plan ahead.
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Old 01-31-2018, 07:17 PM   #12
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Why the 1/2 gap??
The blocks are just taking the place of the floor plywood to keep everything together. It's not creating a gap, just filling the C-channel.
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Old 02-01-2018, 10:20 AM   #13
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It should be a 5/8 or 3/4 space depending on heat of trailer.
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Old 02-01-2018, 10:21 AM   #14
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Sorry heat should be floor thickness.
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