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Old 03-23-2015, 01:53 PM   #1
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1975 31' Sovereign
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Where to cut shell on floor repair

So it's getting close to the time where I can cut out the bad floor in the rear of my sovereign and I've read and read but can't quite figure out where to make my cut- along the crossmember or in front of it? Help please!! Click image for larger version

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Old 03-23-2015, 02:36 PM   #2
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If you are trying to patch that rear section, I would cut somewhere in between the last two cross members (ie., the last one is directly under the wall, and the next one will be about 2 ft. in front of that. So measure about 1 ft aft of the cross member, and if that takes care of all of your rot, then you are good.

The reason I say not to cut on the cross member, is that the cross members are not very wide, so you would end up with two free ends of plywood meeting on the cross member, and each teetering on about 1/2" of metal. When you put your patch in place, you will want to glue and screw a piece of plywood underneath the existing sheet so that you have a "scap" supporting your new patch and joining it to the existing sheet. All that being said, if you wanted to get fancy and cut on the cross member, and put dovetails in both the existing piece and the new piece, then they could lock together right over the cross member. Its a lot of work--probably not worth the effort.

Usually when the plywood is that rotten, the rear hold-down plate is disintegrating, and the rear-most cross member is all but eaten completely away. Have you checked out the condition of your frame back there? When I did my '73, I ended up having to replace about the last 3-4 ft. of frame rails in addition to the last two cross members.

Good luck!
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Old 03-23-2015, 02:44 PM   #3
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Yes... As my friend, Belegedhel mentioned above, cut "back" from the bad area, into good wood. If you cut centered between "ribs" you will have a lot of space to glue and scew a doubler on the underside of the good wood and on your new wood as well! Max strength as "joints" tend to wiggle. When properly "doubled" it won't wiggle there...
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Old 03-23-2015, 04:17 PM   #4
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The frame rails aren't awful but the very last crossmember will definitely be replaced, the second to last one survived! So it's okay if the new wood doesn't meet the second to last crossmember?
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Old 03-24-2015, 07:08 AM   #5
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you must have the space to properly secure the new wood to the old... be careful, this will be under your floor until you pull it up again.
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