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Old 09-17-2015, 10:15 PM   #99
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lights

BambiTX - I really like those lights in your picture with the birch end cap. Are they LED? Where did you get them?

Thanks,
Greg
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Old 10-19-2015, 07:13 AM   #100
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Amazon

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Originally Posted by Greg1410 View Post
BambiTX - I really like those lights in your picture with the birch end cap. Are they LED? Where did you get them?

Thanks,
Greg
Got them from Amazon - Search for Progress Lighting P6155-09.
I did use LED bulbs but you can use any standard size bulb.
Note these are 110 volt lights...
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Old 10-19-2015, 07:26 AM   #101
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Small leak

My dump assembly is set up almost exactly like yours. I am having a problem with the black (ick) tank leaking at the assembly. I cannot tell if the leak originates at the threaded portion connected to the underside of the black tank or the bolted connection where the blade valve connects to the dump assembly. I have had the whole thing apart three times now and cannot seem to eliminate the leak. I put teflon tape on the threads and tightened as much as I dare but note that the male fitting does not quite butt up against the female fitting. I may be able to get another quarter turn but am concerned I may crack the fitting. Any advice?
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Old 10-19-2015, 09:12 AM   #102
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Just looking at the picture, it looks like there is an angle alignment problem at the elbow to the tank drop section. I never use teflon tape on the dump system....rather, I use blue pipe thread seal. Other than that, it looks like you have a nice clean installation.
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Old 10-19-2015, 08:19 PM   #103
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Pipe threads in plastic parts are my nightmare. In fact pipe threads in any material is a nightmare for me.

Can you rig your dump valves using ABS slip joints and ABS adhesive?
I do not know these older trailers very well at all. But I have a lot of confidence in ABS pipe, slip joint fittings, and the adhesive. That's the way I plumbed my icky tanks.

David
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Old 10-20-2015, 06:49 AM   #104
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Thanks for the replies.
Melody Ranch is correct in that the pic was taken prior to finalizing installation. The gray water elbow is in fact correct now and does not leak.
I have never used the blue tape but a plumbing friend recommended using that or plumbers putty so that will be my next attempted fix. The primary problem I think is that it is not possible to enagage all the threads due to bolt heads binding against underside of the floor. It would be great if Valterra designed the valve body with hex shaped holes to capture the bolt heads and allow them to sit flush with the valve body. This would also prevent them from spinning.
dbj216: If I were to use glued fittings I would never be able to removed the tank if it were damaged since the fittings would not be accessible from either above or below. In my experience properly installed glued fittings never leak but unfortunately this is really not an option.
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Old 10-21-2015, 07:19 PM   #105
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Hi bambitex. Sounds like you found the problem. Generally, there is just one thread on a tapered pipe thread that jams tight and seals the joint. Maybe you can shorting the fitting to clear the nuts and get the taper to bite.

The joint between the tank and the outlet pipe is hose clamped on my two later year vintage trailers. Thus the dump valves can be removed from the bottom. The photos may help explain.

Always one problem or another to wrestle with on these old trailers.

David
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Old 10-22-2015, 07:57 AM   #106
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Problem found though not solved

I did indeed find the problem. Two threaded parts bind up before bottoming out (on a workbench with no bolt head interference) and the connection leaks both with and without tape.
Dicussed the problem with VTS and have decided to go with solvent welded fittings instead.
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Old 10-24-2015, 05:00 AM   #107
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It sounds like you are on the right path. I've had good sealing results with "solvent welded" connections. I understand old trailers with old parts don't necessarily lend themselves to more modern construction methods.

Let us know how it works out once you get the parts.

David
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Old 12-04-2015, 08:06 AM   #108
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Painting the frame

Another unpleasant under-the-trailer task was painting the frame. Actually, it involves a good bit more than just painting the frame:

1. Grinding the frame to remove the heavy rust and gunk. See here.

2. I then used POR-15 products on the frame:
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a. POR-15 Cleaner/Degreaser: the frame Dilute with water and spray directly on the frame via a spray bottle. I washed off with water, but I do not think that is necessary. I wore a worksuit, gloves, and a fabric face mask.

b. POR-15 Metal Prep with a spray bottle. It is a “water-based, zinc phosphate metal etching and preparation solution that is non-toxic, non-flammable, non-caustic, and non-corrosive. It etches metal to provide surface profile for superior organic coating adhesion on steel ….” and is biodegradable. I wore gloves and a fabric face mask.

c. POR-15 Paint. I wore a worksuit, gloves, and a fabric face mask. If any of the paint dries on a surface, it has to be removed mechanically, not by any solvent. If you get any on your body, you have to wear it off (which in my case took a few days). I used an inexpensive brush, and it took almost a quart to paint the frame (less the rear bumper, which has been cut off and will be modified to allow for a bumper trunk).

I will post later some images of the frame after painting.
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Old 12-04-2015, 08:23 PM   #109
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Well rank am, you have completed one of the most unpleasant tasks in your project. I did not enjoy wire brushing my frame, and working with POR 15 upside down with a drippy brush. The stuff stops rust by painting over it. About half of my frame still had the factory paint on it. The POR 15 did not adhere as well to those painted surfaces. Made we wonder if I should have used a different product.

David
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Old 12-05-2015, 08:05 AM   #110
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Well rank am, you have completed one of the most unpleasant tasks in your project. I did not enjoy wire brushing my frame, and working with POR 15 upside down with a drippy brush. The stuff stops rust by painting over it. About half of my frame still had the factory paint on it. The POR 15 did not adhere as well to those painted surfaces. Made we wonder if I should have used a different product.

David
David:

Yes, working under the trailer on the frame is very unpleasant, and I am glad that I do not have much left to do underneath.

I ended up grinding pretty much all of the frame metal, and (so far) it looks like there was good adhesion of the paint. Time will tell!

Hank
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Old 12-05-2015, 08:00 PM   #111
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After the POR dries, you get to work on any under floor plumbing, then cut and fit the subfloor insulation, then cut, drill, and rivet a new belly pan, and then install the axles, and then install the propane lines. I spent a lot of time on my creeper under the Trade Wind these last two winters.

Renovating old Airstreams is a lot of hard work. Too bad we are not likely to get paid for our hours when it's time to sell. I hope someone will appreciate it.

David
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Old 01-05-2016, 10:05 AM   #112
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Preparing gray water holding tanks for installation

The holidays are over, and I need to update my progress.

I previously ordered two gray tanks from Vintage Trailer Supply. I describe here how I cut through the subfloor of the cabin for the top side (vent) openings on the tanks.

Tools and equipment:
Prodex (or a substitute)
Straight edge
Utility knife or scissors
Duct tape

Techniques:

I wrapped the tanks with Prodex foil insulation. I cut the Prodex with scissors after marking with a Sharpie and using a piece of scrap wood as a straight edge. I measured to wrap the tank with a single layer of Prodex all around (top, bottom, and the two sides), making cutouts where necessary (using duct tape):

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The foil (without any foam) along sides of Prodex could be straightened and used for taping shut the wrapping:

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Completely wrapped:

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It turned out that I did not have enough depth in my belly pan for a layer of Prodex on the top of the tank (the side against the bottom of the subfloor), so I had to remove the top side layer.

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Next up: installation of the tanks in the belly.
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