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Old 05-16-2004, 09:52 PM   #1
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Unhappy Think this is a problem?

I don't know why, but after reading all these new floor threads, I felt compelled to remove my belly pan and have a look. ok...I was thinking of taking measurements and getting ready to install a grey tank, too...but anyway...started removing the pan, and found this.

I knew there had been some damage before, because I could see a little bit through the bathroom vanity, looking down toward the corner. but it looked isolated. no other indication of any problem from the inside.

The thing I'm wondering right now is, why is it still wet? where is the water coming from? I re-vulkemed the joint where the outside back wall meets the bumper a while ago...and even if water was still coming in there, there's no floor for it to affect anymore; it would just fall out. I did the plumbing vents last year. no sign of anything anywhere else. I suppose it could be coming from the black tank itself..visible now in the pics. BUT...I've taken this thing for weekends and filled it up. if the tank itself is leaking, (or perhaps the dump valve?), it must be very slow. plus, wouldn't it kind of stink? it doesn't seem to now...and there hasn't been anything in the tank for over 6 months. so why is it wet?

you might also be able to make out in the pics that reinforcements were attempted in the past. now those are rotten, too. I'm wondering if it would be ok to stick some flat metal stock in there to brace it up temporarily, so I can actually go camping this season. otherwise, it'll be a while before I can spend the time thats going to be required to fix this properly.
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Old 05-16-2004, 10:21 PM   #2
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That is a strange pattern. You still have a last frame member in ok shape. Wet seems to be rearward of the pipe. Could some of this ply been hacked away by PO. Need to take a look from up top. Why is it in so straigth a line?
OH... it extends above some piece. Could be coming from water heater area and running length of bath between the sheets.
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Old 05-16-2004, 11:00 PM   #3
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I can think of a couple of places it could be originating.
One is the water heater seeping. The other is the shower pan seeping.
I can't really tell from the photos what the orientation of the plumbing is on your unit.
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Old 05-17-2004, 12:36 AM   #4
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Looks pretty much like mine did before I replaced the floor under the bathroom.
My water damage came from a poorly sealed bottom rub rail around teh rear of the trailer.
Water will run down the skin, and dribble into the gap between the skin and the rub rail.
If you have not used the trailer, and it's still wet, then it can only be rain damage, right? This sort of rot does stay wet for a long time, though, not much ventilation going on inside the belly pan, especially if you still had the insulation in there.
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Old 05-17-2004, 06:04 AM   #5
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It is just my opinion, but I think that everyone with a "new used" Airstream, especially a vintage one, should take down the belly pan. Do this before changing the curtains!

I did (although I did change the curtains before I dropped the pan), and found the supports for the bw tank completely gone, as well as a rust hole through the frame. All things I couldn't have seen otherwise. My rust hole wasn't that serious, and I repaired it this weekend, but the bw tank supports was a disaster waiting to happen.

And yes, "that could be a problem." The good news is that they aren't that difficult to fix, just time consuming. My trailer had pretty much the same thing, and it was caused by three things. The water heater leaking, the seal at the toilet flange, and water running down the side of the trailer and following the banana wrap and soaking in to the flooring.

If it is still wet, you can carefully scrape away all the rotted wood. Then use a piece of pressure treated plywood or lumber to fit in the space. It looks like you have a few beams you could attach a few steel bars or angles across to support it to the back beam. Just a temporary fix. It doesn't look like you have much structural problems there... yet.

Good luck!
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Old 05-17-2004, 11:03 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sneakinup

And yes, "that could be a problem." :
Um...yeah. I was just being facetious...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sneakinup
The good news is that they aren't that difficult to fix, just time consuming. My trailer had pretty much the same thing, and it was caused by three things. The water heater leaking, the seal at the toilet flange, and water running down the side of the trailer and following the banana wrap and soaking in to the flooring.

If it is still wet, you can carefully scrape away all the rotted wood. Then use a piece of pressure treated plywood or lumber to fit in the space. It looks like you have a few beams you could attach a few steel bars or angles across to support it to the back beam. Just a temporary fix. It doesn't look like you have much structural problems there... yet.

Good luck!
That's just what I was thinking. and yeah, the frame looks good. the rust is superficial...pix make it look much worse than it actually is. you can see that the next forward crossmember is pretty clean.
I'm going with option 3, for now, as a cause: "side of the trailer/bannana wrap". I'm sure it was probably leaking from the bumper in the past...vulkem didn't look like it was in great shape there when I bought it, but I re-sealed that joint a while ago .I had the toilet out last season to replacethe ball valve. Put a new seal on the flange when I re-installed it,. no sign of previous leaking there. The water heater was moved some time after '71 to the galley, under the stove/oven. So its not in the back corner like all you 71 owners are used to.

The shower pan is forward of this particular bay in the frame; its in the next one up, and the floor looks ok up there. or, at least there is bone-dry floor between the tank and the shower's location. I haven't taken the pan off any further forward yet.

The orientation of the pictures: they were taken from the rear curbside corner (more or less) looking across toward the street-side corner. The big pipe is one of the grey water lines, and it is parallel to the bumper. I'm not sure about the "straight line" effect; could be just from the camera's flash (?)...I'll have to look again, but it does look that way, doesn't it?

Here's a couple of scans from the service manual to clarify the layout:
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Old 05-23-2004, 07:53 AM   #7
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Greetings one and all.

I am in the process of replacing my Bthroom floor.

I used a Roto Zip to remove the flooring in the Bathroom. Next used a the respi saw to cut the bolts. I removes the insulation in the floor to allow everything to dry.

It's important to keep as much of the old floor as you can to make a pattern from it.

I 'm using cardboard to amke a template so that I can make it fit like new.

Will keep you posted on progress.

I haven't needed to remove any of the belly pan as of yet.


Cheers!
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