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Old 09-25-2013, 01:29 PM   #1
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1973 23' Safari
Brevard , North Carolina
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Using caulk correctly

I really have researched this but got tired of reading like 500 posts.

We need to address some leaks and that's to be expected. I just wonder if there is something better or different that vulkem that I used to use for doing this?

Do I just caulk all the suspect areas or do I need to take all the rivets out and clean off all the old caulk and reattach each panel? Do I need to remove all the stuff on the top of the unit and clean and caulk or can I scrape off as much as I can from the exterior apply a bead of caulk after taping?

What is the best place to get caulk and seal rubber and all the usual airstream stuff?

This is exactly why we never used our other as....it was always being repaired. Just once I would like to have a functional unit just to what it's like to actually camp. Well....it does have 4 new tires to rest on while we spend months to years fixing it!

One more thing....am I gonna mess up something by covering it with a tarp until I get to the caulking?

This is a big job for a 70 yr old fat lady! Usually the Mr gets to feeling guilty and helps when he sees my climbing a ladder! It's always my job to learn how to do something and get all the supplies together.....then he does the job and takes credit!! Fortunately he takes instruction well.
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Old 09-25-2013, 02:14 PM   #2
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1960 26' Overlander
Mount Vernon , Washington
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First, don't put a tarp on it. the movement will leave marks on the Alum skin.
second, you can get what you need from your AS dealer or vintage trailer supply.
third, you don't take the panals apart.
clean the old stuff off with a plastic razer blade.
other here can give more advice on what to use where. the latest thing to use on the seams is Captain Tolley's Creeping Crack Cure as it will wick into the seams. i have not tried this yet.
for around the lights and window frames I uses TremPro 635 Polyurethane.
TremPro 635
Captain Tolley's Creeping Crack Cure


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Old 09-25-2013, 02:51 PM   #3
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Wow....just what I wanted to know. I had a feeling there was something new I needed to know about. I will duct tape construction plastic to the major stuff on the roof. I can get the residue off with toluene. I don't have a dealer or supply anywhere near me....up in the Smokey Mts or real near. Will have to order.
Thanks a bunch....always open to ideas!
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Old 09-25-2013, 03:40 PM   #4
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I've been researching this myself. Here's what I think I know as I prepare to do the top of my newly acquired '90 25' Excella. [Digression... My trailer appears to neither fish nor fowl - not old enough to be vintage and not new enough to be new. Just old I guess.]

Looks like Vulkem 116 / TremPro 626 (same stuff I believe) is the #1 choice of the old pro's. Also much discussion about TremPro 635.

Advised that it's sticky. Good idea to wear gloves and to use masking tape. Cleans with mineral spirits and/or WD40. Might be available at Fastenal or online.

Then I stumbled on Eternabond. What's up with Eternabond? Seems to be the third rail of caulking solutions on this forum. Other RVers swear by it. Is it the aluminum thing?

Hope that helps. And if it doesn't hopefully someone will correct me and then we will both know how to proceed. I'm with you though - this whole project with my 70-year old body on the top of a trailer has the makings of a pretty entertaining reality series.

Poppy
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Old 09-25-2013, 03:56 PM   #5
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One more...

SikaFlex 721 - Easier to work with than TremPro as it cleans up with soap and water, used by factory, sets up in two hours. Available at Loews gutter section.

Poppy
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Old 09-25-2013, 03:57 PM   #6
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Please don't string me up for opening a potential can of worms....but, I too, am at this stage.

A guy in the park where I'm staying (don't you just love those credentials?) was telling me yesterday about pure, 100% silicone caulk. Seems he used to do work on airplanes or some such. The important word in that sentence was PURE...

Anyone know anything about that?

Julianne
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Old 09-25-2013, 04:11 PM   #7
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I have gathered that silicone is numero uno no-no caulk. Bad bad bad with aluminum. Bad karma too as future owners will curse you (VTS or MEK to remove it if you encounter it). Polyurethane caulk good.

Poppy
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Old 09-25-2013, 06:08 PM   #8
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What parts are you looking to caulk? Is it around windows/doors/openings or are you looking at the roof and endcaps? I would not be removing rivets unless they were obviously loose and leaking. I coated the roof with a white elastomeric seal last year which both seals it up and reduces the heat in the summer. There are other options for the seams lower down that you wouldnt want to paint over. Acryl-r or parbond or that creeping crack sealer come to mind. Don't use any silicone, only polyurethane type sealants on the outside. Check out my blog below, I've done my share of re caulking on this trailer and still have more to do.
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Old 09-25-2013, 06:29 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Nolavalkyrie View Post
Please don't string me up for opening a potential can of worms....but, I too, am at this stage.

A guy in the park where I'm staying (don't you just love those credentials?) was telling me yesterday about pure, 100% silicone caulk. Seems he used to do work on airplanes or some such. The important word in that sentence was PURE...

Anyone know anything about that?

Julianne
"100% pure silicone" caulk is some misleading advertizing at best, GE sells more then 20 different products that are all "100% pure silicone" caulk.

Also gives silicone a bad name, some types have an ingredient that etches aluminum, so since they all claim to be "100% pure silicone" caulk people think they all do it.
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Old 09-25-2013, 06:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lexxy View Post
I will duct tape construction plastic to the major stuff on the roof. I can get the residue off with toluene.
Thanks a bunch....always open to ideas!
Instead of duct tape use heavy duty packing tape, much less residue to deal with.
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Old 09-26-2013, 04:46 PM   #11
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I will change Dewdrop's name to Can-o-Worms!!! Got my first cleaning in today...3 mud dauber nests and 2 wasp nests so far. I think the first things to be caulked will be everything we can reach on the top of the unit for starters. I am used to lots of sikas from the boat so nice to know about Lowes. I did get the vent fan working when I cut out some nests. We got the unit plugged in and were charmed to find out the whole skin is HOT! So next things to ask on that forum.

I hate silicon cuz it all has to be removed before another application.

I will not be washing a hot trailer.....can o worms!

Thanks for the starter help....we have a dry week coming. We gad over an inch and only 3 small spots...but who knows where it goes inside.
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Old 09-26-2013, 05:15 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lexxy View Post
Wow....just what I wanted to know. I had a feeling there was something new I needed to know about. I will duct tape construction plastic to the major stuff on the roof. I can get the residue off with toluene. I don't have a dealer or supply anywhere near me....up in the Smokey Mts or real near. Will have to order.
Thanks a bunch....always open to ideas!
This is available at Home Depot or Lowes...

I've used it often on the roof...

This has also been available...off & on, seems our local stores are a little erratic...


Bob
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Old 09-26-2013, 06:56 PM   #13
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This might have been said before, but Fastneil sells tempro, and can order in other stuff.
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Old 09-26-2013, 07:02 PM   #14
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Can find Fastneil....is there another spelling?
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