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Old 05-29-2007, 08:27 PM   #1
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Shell Skin bend at rear of frame

Where the shell meets the frame in the rear curve, streetside, the skin is bent against the frame as if it is too long. On the curbside, it fits just fine. The trailer is level where it is parked. I found this bent skin when I removed the floor. I am just about to reinstall it and am concerned that I may not be able to properly attach the outside trim not to mention getting the new piece of metal that runs all way across underneath it. Removing that cross piece was tough, even though it was corroded, I had to pull out what was left with a pair of vice grips.

I have dropped the tongue all the way down and that area does not lift above the frame. There is a little bit of movement if I jump up and down on the bumper but the bent area still maintains contact with the frame rail.

Would welcome any ideas of what would cause this and suggestions to correct.

Thanks, TB
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Old 05-29-2007, 09:58 PM   #2
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The shell has sagged down to the frame. This happened to me to and I just put a small hydraulic jack on the frame and a 2x4 running up to the nearest frame and gently jacked it up until everything lined up again. Be very careful doing this, as it would be real easy to buckle the frame. I jacked on the rear window lower frame. Be CAREFUL
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Old 05-30-2007, 05:00 AM   #3
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Aero,

I think I will have to give that a try. I don't see any other way to attempt to correct it. The rear interior skins are out so access to the window frame is no problem. Anything that you did to keep it from dropping back down before you got the floor back in or did it stay in place? Was thinking maybe it should be blocked in some fashion to prevent this???

Thanks in advance.

TB
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Old 05-30-2007, 06:37 AM   #4
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on both of my shorties, i had the same issue. i tell ya, the airstreams from the 60s were all different. no 2 panels were the same!

jp
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Old 05-30-2007, 08:03 AM   #5
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I had to remove the rivets from the aft lower skin so the 2x4's would miss the frame. I then took them to the ground. I guess I used a crossmember instead of the window frame.
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Old 05-30-2007, 09:38 AM   #6
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Aero,

Just got back from buying a small bottle jack and decided to check for any new postings. Thanks a bunch for the picture of what you did. It clears up the question. Out the door to try my luck will follow up later with results.

Crossed Fingers,
TB
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Old 05-30-2007, 09:01 PM   #7
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The jacking process worked but I still didn't get total seperation of the bent metal from the frame on the streetside. I tried it with the tongue dropped and level. I took it as far as I felt comfortable being that it was making a good bit of noise on the last couple pumps of the jack. I didn't block it but I do think that I can get the cross piece of metal in, as it is the only one that has to go under the shell skin. The big challenge will remain getting the outside trim properly attached.

I am probably going to give it another turn tomorrow. I was pretty nervous jacking it like that as I know how much damage could occur if something went wrong. You can see the way I had to place the jack to get under the 2x4 prevented me from putting in a block to the ground. That's a small jack, 2 ton, and I had to stack the pieces of angle across the outside to support the boards under it so as to get the proper angle needed to get under the 2x4. The second picture is the piece just behind the wheel well. The floor was gone under there and it was metal to metal. I used a crowbar to lift that and put the new piece under it.

I'm all ears if anyone has any more helpful suggestions or comments.

Thanks as always, TB
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Old 05-30-2007, 09:35 PM   #8
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It looks like you are getting there. Sometimes you just need to be creative. Try setting the jack on the ground and using a vertical 2X4 from the jack to the horizontal 2X4 on the side that is the worst.
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Old 05-31-2007, 12:13 PM   #9
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Tried the jack on the ground with the vertical 2x4 and it worked great. I don't think I was as nervous about doing it the 2nd time so I probably gave it more reason to work. Checked it out jacking in the center as well and resulted in much better results than before. I can easily slide the cross piece in. The area next to the whell well, where I used the crowbar, even raised just a little bit since it is not bolted down yet.

Next question; is there a way to really fix this and keep it from sagging back down when the jack comes out? Even with the floor inserted nothing back there that I can see really provides any vertical support to keep it up there. Since the skin is just rivited to the floor channel, that seems to be a matter of providing the rounded path for the skin to be attached to and not to provide support for this purpose.

Still all ears for any further help and many thanks for the tips.
TB
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Old 06-01-2007, 10:17 AM   #10
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I riveted angles from the vertical ribs to the "C" channel. I will take a picture of this detail and post this afternoon.
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Old 06-01-2007, 04:19 PM   #11
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Here's the picture of the angles I attached to the frame a C channel to hold the back end of the trailer in position while I changed the aft skins
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