Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 03-17-2014, 01:52 PM   #1
2 Rivet Member
Austin , Texas
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 78
Thermal Tape between rib and shell


Building Airstream from Scratch project guy here.

I found this video on current construction methods.

It mentions a thermal tape used between the ribs and shell to inhibit thermal transfer and condensation. I like this idea.

1. Do you like this idea?

2. Where on earth can I find 1.5 inch to to inch wide thermal tape?

Thanks for any tips.

bass-o-matic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-17-2014, 01:54 PM   #2
Overland Adventurer
AtomicNo13's Avatar
1991 34' Excella
2009 34' Panamerica
Telluride , Colorado
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 1,938
Use elcheapo double sided foam mounting tape. I get it at the dollar store. Perfect solution.

AtomicNo13 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-17-2014, 03:54 PM   #3
Rivet Master
cameront120's Avatar
1972 25' Tradewind
North Vancouver , British Columbia
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 3,422
Images: 23
The material in the video looks black and appears to have some thickness to it. I wonder if they use a self-adhering membrane similar to Blueskin (a rubberized asphalt - very sticky) that we use on buildings?
Cameron & the Labradors, Kai & Samm
North Vancouver, BC
Live! Life's a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death! - Mame Dennis
cameront120 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-17-2014, 03:56 PM   #4
2 Rivet Member
Austin , Texas
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 78
I wonder if tar paper would work. It's just about breaking that thermal transfer and not degrading over time. If it were adhesive that would help keep it in place when I'm working. Maybe window tape? I have lot' of that around.
bass-o-matic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-17-2014, 04:53 PM   #5
Rivet Master
goshawks00's Avatar

1966 22' Safari
1954 22' Flying Cloud
Saline , Michigan
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 777
It appears to be a barrier between the outside aluminum and the framing, an impossible thing to do with a rebuild unless you remove all outside skins. I do think this same effect can be done by taping your barrier between the ribs inside once the interior skins are removed.
Materials are endless as long as they don't absorb moisture and are relatively thin.
goshawks00 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-17-2014, 05:37 PM   #6
3 Rivet Member
1973 25' Tradewind
Augusta , Georgia
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 123
I'm in the process of putting interior skins back in. I'm using Scotch 23 insulating/splicing tape. While not very sticky, a shot of spray glue holds it in place long enough to install panel. I found a box at local garage sale - figure it is better than nothing.
DGJackson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2014, 10:57 PM   #7
4 Rivet Member
jonplayers's Avatar
Vintage Kin Owner
Terrace , British Columbia
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 321
My trailer has butyl tape between the ribs and shell.
jonplayers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-13-2014, 12:20 AM   #8
Rivet Master
1974 Argosy 20
2014 20' Flying Cloud
Kooskia , Idaho
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 4,591
I would not worry too much about it. The rivets that hold the skins onto the ribs conduct so much heat that the tape makes little difference. Years ago, in grad school, I worked at a "thermal lab" where we tested things. One interesting article I read then made a great impression on me. They had a one foot square piece of a curtain wall material used in big buildings. Aluminum glued on each side of a 2" insulating material. To keep the aluminum from coming off in case of a fire, they tested having a single metal connection between the inner and outer skins. When tested thermally, the single 1/4" diameter metal connection from inside to outside doubled the heat loss or gain of the one square foot panel.

In a similar manner, the rivets which hold the skins to the ribs of the Airstream overwhelm the thermal tape. It is not bad that it is used, just that it really does not help a lot.
idroba is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-13-2014, 06:46 AM   #9
2 Rivet Member
Austin , Texas
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 78
Wow. Thanks for the detailed answer. Very interesting data.

bass-o-matic is offline   Reply With Quote

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
1959 Overlander Restoration 65CV 1960 - 1964 Overlander 554 02-11-2018 10:54 AM
Shell on? Shell off? Althea68 Repairing/Replacing Floor &/or Frame 55 04-01-2011 09:35 PM

Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:30 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.