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Old 10-17-2015, 01:58 PM   #1
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1972 25' Tradewind
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Shouldn't there be a rubber seal where the lights meet the exterior skin?

I am making all final updates before doing the insulation (correcting less than perfect wiring connections from PO (I am soldering instead of crimping), running wires in conduit instead of just on the skin, etc.), and was looking at how the new LED marker lights were installed by the previous owner.

Shouldn't there be a rubber gasket/seal around each light at it's base where the light meets the exterior skin?

I'm not sure why they aren't there. The PO including just about EVERYTHING I could want when I purchased the AS (new toilet, new tanks, new pump, new water heater, extra wires, extra rivets, rivet gun, etc., etc.,), but there are no seals for the already installed lights!

Can I buy these separately, or will they only come with the light's housing?

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Old 10-17-2015, 02:46 PM   #2
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Usually they are set in Dumb Dumb. Put a line of Dumb Dumb around the edge of the fixture and screw in place. The extra Dumb Dumb will ooz out as you tighten down and you can trim it off with a dull blade, a kitchen knife or edge of a putty knife.

The fixture ground is through the screws if a second wire is not there.

While you are at it consider replacing the fixtures with LEDs. Brighter and longer life
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Old 10-17-2015, 03:26 PM   #3
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Gaskets usually come with the light. A bead of plumbers putty or butyl tape around the top and sides to seal it. There should be a drain hole on bottom, if it's on top flop it over, keep the drain hole open so any water that gets back there drains out easily, reducing chances of leak through the wire opening.
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Old 10-17-2015, 03:33 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HowieE View Post
Usually they are set in Dumb Dumb.
Totally thought you were being rude, for a second (calling me Dumb Dumb). Then I thought to myself, "I've never seen an Airstream running light that's flush to the skin?" (set in) Might be cool though!

Thanks for the responses, guys. I knew there should be some kind of seal, just wondering if there is an actual rubber gasket (like I think these should have come with). I'm not having much luck sourcing them on line, but I'll keep looking.

I'd rather back out the screws and put the appropriate rubber gaskets on these (or just replace the lights entirely) than deal with headaches from "unperfect" goo-seals later.
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Old 10-18-2015, 11:39 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kidjedi View Post

I'd rather back out the screws and put the appropriate rubber gaskets on these (or just replace the lights entirely) than deal with headaches from "unperfect" goo-seals later.
Could also get an old inner tube and cut one to the shape.
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Old 10-18-2015, 06:11 PM   #6
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Buy some gasket material at any good hardware store and cut your own.
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Old 11-15-2015, 06:22 PM   #7
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I recently bought new clearance lights for my '70 Safari, and they did not come with a gasket. When I took one of the old lights off it had a very thin rubber gasket underneath. I was just planning to seal the lights with Parbond.
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Old 11-15-2015, 06:40 PM   #8
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My Grote replacement lights didn't come with new seals either so we bought cork gasket material from an auto supply store and cut some with scissors. Also noticed that the factory used rigid plastic grommets where the wires passed through the body and they were far from water tight so we bought new rubber grommets and popped them in at the same time.
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Old 11-15-2015, 07:51 PM   #9
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My factory marker lights were sealed on the tops and sides with Parbond. When I had to replace some of them (weathering cracks) I found a rubber grommet in the hole where the wire passed through the side of the Airstream. I dribbled water down over them and could not see water going in past the grommet (tight fit to the aluminum). I still sealed the replacement lens with Parbond, but highly recommend the use of a properly sized rubber grommet. Belt and suspenders...
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Old 11-15-2015, 11:16 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Siegmann View Post
My factory marker lights were sealed on the tops and sides with Parbond. When I had to replace some of them (weathering cracks) I found a rubber grommet in the hole where the wire passed through the side of the Airstream. I dribbled water down over them and could not see water going in past the grommet (tight fit to the aluminum). I still sealed the replacement lens with Parbond, but highly recommend the use of a properly sized rubber grommet. Belt and suspenders...
Glad to see in the thirty odd years between the manufacturing of our trailers they figured out hard fluted plastic wasn't the best plan, my girls a 69 ;-)
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Old 11-15-2015, 11:29 PM   #11
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My lights and all hull pentrations were sealed with Adseal. That was site of most "leaks" that traveled to unique places in the shell befor exiting...
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Old 11-16-2015, 05:51 PM   #12
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I've been checking the lights in rain and snow, and haven't seen a drop. The lights are brand new, and the wiring seems well done, so hopefully there was some sort of seal/gasket installed on the back of the light by the previous owner. Thus, it would seem my concerns are mostly cosmetic (there is a gap at the base of each light that looks like there should be a gasket there).

I may end up sealing with Parabond or TremPro 635 at some point, but for now, it's just a minor visual annoyance.
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Old 11-16-2015, 07:56 PM   #13
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There should be a gap on some portion of the bottom/base. To let water out if it should get in.
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Old 11-16-2015, 08:54 PM   #14
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Butyl tape is great stuff, and simple to work with.


Regards,

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