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Old 08-18-2013, 07:06 PM   #1
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Closed cell spray foam insulation?

Has anyone tried spray foam insulation on an AS renovation?
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Old 08-18-2013, 07:28 PM   #2
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Has anyone tried spray foam insulation on an AS renovation?
The shell twists, destroying the foam.

Andy
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:26 PM   #3
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I find it hard to believe an AS twists enough to destroy spray in place foam. Wouldn't the skins show wrinkles and creases with that amount of twisting and flexing? I was more concerned with sweating.
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:30 PM   #4
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Look at your number of posts and then look at at Andy's. I think I would trust Andy's answer if I was you.
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:54 PM   #5
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Look at your number of posts and then look at at Andy's. I think I would trust Andy's answer if I was you.
I'm sure Andy, an Airstream dealer, has a wealth of knowledge. I generally like to get more than one opinion to base a decision on. I am exploring options on insulating a frame off restoration.
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Old 08-18-2013, 11:12 PM   #6
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I'm sure Andy, an Airstream dealer, has a wealth of knowledge. I generally like to get more than one opinion to base a decision on. I am exploring options on insulating a frame off restoration.
I didn't share an opinion with you, but I did try to share a "fact", which are part of my 47 years with Airstream.

An Airstream flexes because of it's "monocoque" design, just like an aircraft.

The flexing is small enough to damage the foam, but not large enough to damage the metal.

Airstream used it in some doors in 1969, and very quickly, discarded the idea.

Dometic used it in some reefer doors, long ago, and discarded it.

The foam, cannot take the twisting, or for that matter, the vibration.

But, as always, it's your choice.

Andy
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Old 08-18-2013, 11:53 PM   #7
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Haven't used spray-in insulation on a trailer, but my office has used spray-in insulation on several metal shop buildings.

The insulation covers well IF you can spray it on directly; if you try to spray through an opening, coverage isn't so great. However, even the slightest impact causes it to flake off, so if you use it in a trailer, make sure you never hit a pothole.

Most spray-on insulation also tends to trap moisture, including condensation, and holds that moisture against the metal surface you're insulating. One reason we stopped using spray-on insulation is that we had to replace the metal building skins due to corrosion much sooner than if we had used some other kind of insulation.
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Old 08-19-2013, 05:55 AM   #8
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I've read a lot of comments how it doesn't perform well in trailers and wondered why, because I had three different cargo vans done and was very happy with the results. I'am talking about the Urethane spray, it was quite durable. One of the advantages of the spray is that it eliminates condensation because it is directly applied to the surface not allowing moister to form on it. I would think it would lock everything in place not allowing the trailers to flex as much because it is quite strong. I never experienced flaking cracking or corrosion and this is over 28 plus years of ownership on three different vans driving in Michigan, and believe me we have potholes. There are some disavantages, if hit on the outside it dents more readily as it won't flex, and much more difficult to repair after an accident. My experience isn't with aluminum framing it might react differently.
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Old 08-19-2013, 06:11 AM   #9
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I've read a lot of comments how it doesn't perform well in trailers and wondered why, because I had three different cargo vans done and was very happy with the results. I'am talking about the Urethane spray, it was quite durable. One of the advantages of the spray is that it eliminates condensation because it is directly applied to the surface not allowing moister to form on it. I would think it would lock everything in place not allowing the trailers to flex as much because it is quite strong. I never experienced flaking cracking or corrosion and this is over 28 plus years of ownership on three different vans driving in Michigan, and believe me we have potholes. There are some disavantages, if hit on the outside it dents more readily as it won't flex, and much more difficult to repair after an accident. My experience isn't with aluminum framing it might react differently.
The spray-in insulation I'm familiar with isn't urethane foam. We didn't use urethane (or polyurethane) at our field sites due to numerous EPA complaints about its toxicity and the vapors it gives off from out-gassing. Being a Government agency, we have to take that sort of thing into account. As a private owner, you can make up your own mind. Aside from possible toxicity, urethane does have the advantes you cite.

If you use a urethane foam, ventilate to a fare-thee-well for as long as you can during and after installation, and if you get headaches or your eyes begin to feel like they've got sand in them while using the trailer, ventilate some more.
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Old 08-19-2013, 07:30 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In View Post
I didn't share an opinion with you, but I did try to share a "fact", which are part of my 47 years with Airstream.

An Airstream flexes because of it's "monocoque" design, just like an aircraft.

The flexing is small enough to damage the foam, but not large enough to damage the metal.

Airstream used it in some doors in 1969, and very quickly, discarded the idea.

Dometic used it in some reefer doors, long ago, and discarded it.

The foam, cannot take the twisting, or for that matter, the vibration.

But, as always, it's your choice.

Andy
The FACTS are the types of foams and formulations have changed over the years.

Currently there are several types of spray on foams that will flex. Urethane being one of them. I suspect the one that was originally tried many years ago was a form of polyisocyanate which does not flex well at all.

Aaron
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Old 08-19-2013, 07:56 AM   #11
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That's what I'm looking for! What material did Airstream use in the doors that failed? How are modern airplanes insulated? The military has insulated planes with foam, what type? 44 years has seen quite a bit of material development. Is it time to revisit the idea? Fact is in 1969 a computer filled a large room, now I'm holding one in my hand.
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Old 08-19-2013, 08:08 AM   #12
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Try doing a search of the forums for "spray foam insulation" and permutations thereof. This topic has come up half a dozen times in the last few years.
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Old 08-19-2013, 08:44 AM   #13
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just to play devils advocate, Avion used spray foam insulation...

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f46/...eam-98513.html
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Old 08-19-2013, 08:59 AM   #14
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Ouch!

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Look at your number of posts and then look at at Andy's. I think I would trust Andy's answer if I was you.
Easy. I thought that was fair question. I would not have guessed that the trailer twists enough to destroy the foam either. However, good explanation and good to know. Another thing to stuff into my "clue bag."
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