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Old 07-09-2007, 02:10 PM   #1
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Fiberglass End Cap

How difficult is it to get behind the fiberglass end cap in rear bath to fix a dent in the roof? Ideally I would like to just lower it enough to smooth out my dents where the vent fan was. It looks to be one huge piece from the sink up and around with side cabinets included? Also I assume it won't fit through the door. I hate to just start removing rivets.
thanks
James
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Old 07-09-2007, 02:43 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsflint
How difficult is it to get behind the fiberglass end cap in rear bath to fix a dent in the roof? Ideally I would like to just lower it enough to smooth out my dents where the vent fan was. It looks to be one huge piece from the sink up and around with side cabinets included? Also I assume it won't fit through the door. I hate to just start removing rivets.
thanks
James
A dent in the roof or a dent in a segment?

A photo would be helpful.

Andy
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Old 07-09-2007, 03:26 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsflint
How difficult is it to get behind the fiberglass end cap in rear bath to fix a dent in the roof? Ideally I would like to just lower it enough to smooth out my dents where the vent fan was. It looks to be one huge piece from the sink up and around with side cabinets included? Also I assume it won't fit through the door. I hate to just start removing rivets.
thanks
James
Everything fits through the door. That's how they were made - frame and shell first - stuff inserted later. They knew repairs would have to be done in the future so they planned for it.

Good Luck, Mike
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Old 07-09-2007, 03:29 PM   #4
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Dent

Everything inside your Airstream came in thru the door.
If this dent is smooth enough too be pushed out, you will do better by getting sucktion cup used for body work and pull them from outside. As Andy said pictures would help us help you.

Don
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Old 07-09-2007, 03:58 PM   #5
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Yes, while it's true that everything inside your Airstream "came in through the door"...it doesn't mean it can easily be removed at will. The fiberglass/plastic end caps are the first things in - when there is lots of extra maneuvering space. They may not fit back out through the door without removing everything else installed after them first...especially if it's in the bathroom. In our '64, in order to remove the back end cap, we would have to first remove the shower, all the interior cabinets (except dinette & uppers at the front cap) including the kitchen, wardrobes, gaucho and the ceiling hung upper cabinets.

My concern with trying to drop it so you could smooth out a dent would be that it is old plastic/fiberglass and could be very brittle - easy to crack.

Shari
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Old 07-09-2007, 04:17 PM   #6
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End Cap's

Thanks Sheri
When I took mine out the Non-Airstream was gutted.
Not trying too miss lead, just a senior moment.

Don
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Old 07-09-2007, 05:26 PM   #7
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The fiberglass endcaps in my '64 are still very tough, not brittle at all, and if I had any reason to take them out I wouldn't worry about that aspect. I would worry that they are lapped UNDER the other (aluminium) interior skin panels, which means removing them means removing at least the panels below them and quite possibly loosening, bending, or removing the roof panels above them.

I don't have much of an alternative suggestion. I don't know the difficulty of repairing fiberglass afterwards, but would cutting an access hole in the cap to gain access to the underside of the outer skin serve? Re-attaching the cut-out section might not be easy, but almost anything would be easier than taking out the whole endcap.
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Old 07-09-2007, 05:32 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jacob D.
I don't know the difficulty of repairing fiberglass afterwards, but would cutting an access hole in the cap to gain access to the underside of the outer skin serve? Re-attaching the cut-out section might not be easy, but almost anything would be easier than taking out the whole endcap.
I would be more inclined to remove the damaged exterior panel to fix the dent, depending on the location & severity. At least with Olympic rivets & a rivet shaver there wouldn't be as much evidence of the repair when complete.

Shari
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Old 07-09-2007, 06:01 PM   #9
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I agree with Shari, if you can't get the result you can live with using a suction tool.
Dave
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Old 07-10-2007, 09:13 AM   #10
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Rear Dent

Here they are. It was bright this morning. I really just wanted to minimize the dents as much as possible by pushing them out from the inside with a basketball or something similar but I may have to live with them. Cutting and repairing the fiberglass might be the way to go.
thanks
James
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Old 07-10-2007, 09:16 AM   #11
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BTW I tried a suction cup but could not get a good bite with it as it is about 4" in diameter. I need to try and find a smaller one.
James
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Old 07-10-2007, 09:41 AM   #12
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Hate to be the bearer of bad news...but - those are some pretty big dents with what appear to be creases. If will be very difficult to smooth them out no matter what method you try...

Unfortunately, aluminum is very soft and it stretches. It can't be "shrunk" back - kinda like a balloon, once it's been stretched it can't go back. You may be able to get the dents to appear shallower or not quite as pronounced...but the effect of the stretched aluminum will most likely still be evident and you won't ever have smooth end caps without replacing them completely.

I give you lots of kudos for trying - I know there are here on the forums thaty have had moderate success, maybe they will chime in with some tips. Good luck in whatever you decide to do...and please post progress & "after" pics ~

Shari
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Old 07-10-2007, 10:01 AM   #13
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Thanks, that was the hope, to minimize the damage not repair. This is our first AS and I jumped on this not knowing anything about them other than wanting one for many years. Knowing what I do now I would have waited for one without the rear damage that this one has but hindsight is 20/20. I still feel good about it because it is within my capablities to restore this one to a very usable state. I will be calling Andy with an axle(s) purchase (soon hopefully) then we will hit the road for our first trip. We will use this untill something else comes a long.
James
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Old 07-10-2007, 04:02 PM   #14
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There is Hope!

James,

I have almost the exact same condition on my 1970 Safari. And yes, I believe that I can restore the damage to about 90%. It will never be a "show trailer", but hey, neither am I!

The good news is my front end had similar damage. After about 3 hours of going nuts drilling rivets and taking out screws, I had the underside accessable. 20 minutes later, I was very satisfied with the dent extractions! 12 months later, I'm still re-assembling !
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