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Old 08-08-2009, 06:27 PM   #1
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1972 31' Sovereign
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Rivets around windows

I have removed 2 Vista View windows, and both wing windows on Little Girl. One of the vista views is already re-installed without any issues. My question invloves the other 3 windows.

The 2 vista views and the right-hand wing windows were replaced at some point. The left-hand wing window is original, although it's missing the front pane of glass (which is why I took it out). When I removed these 3 windows, each of them has a 3 to 4 inch section on one of the round corners where the rivets on the window do not go into the trailer skin. It looks like the openings were all cut a tad too large. The edge of the window coveres the opening ok, but there are 5 or 6 rivets in a row than do not attach the window frame to anything on the trailer.

I thought when I discovered this oddity on the replaced vista view and wing windows, that it was just part of the shoddy job they did during the replacement (like the regular steel pop rivets they used). But, when I discoverd the same thing on the original wing window, it got me wondering if others have come across this during window replacements.

I was thinking about cutting a strip of aluminum about 1 to 1 1/2 inches wide and using it as a backer for the sections where the rivets do not attach to the skins. My thoughts were this extra piece of aluminum would help act as a clamp and more firmly attach the winodws to the skin all the way around.

Does that sound sensible? Or am I being too concerned about a normal assembly oddity of airstream windows?

Chris

btw - We found two things that remove old vulkum fairly easily. One is Gumout carb cleaner, and the other is Pro Strength "De-Solv-it" - we found it at Ace Hardware. The De-solv-it works on silicone and other caulks as well, and does not discolor the alumimum.
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Old 08-08-2009, 10:07 PM   #2
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I ran across the same thing when I repaired my wing windows but it was only 2rivets on one side and 3 on the other. It was on the lower outboard corner of both. I just filled the holes with rivets on the window frame and sealed. It sounds like your plan is the only viable option you have. Really poor craftsmanship isn't it.
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Old 08-09-2009, 09:25 AM   #3
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Hey Aerowood - Thanks for replying. I guess it's nice to know that someone else has fun into a similar problem.

When you took the wing windows out, were the insides of the frames covered with about 1/2 inch thick layer of vulkum? Mine were, so I wonder if the extra vulkum not only seals everything, but also helps hold the windows in place. I had to cut through the old vulkum with a utility knife in order to get the wing windows out.

I didn't run into that same thick vulkum seal on the vista views, so they popped out fairly easy.

Chris
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Old 08-09-2009, 10:46 AM   #4
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Yes I did, I think 1/2" would be a conservative number. I used a heat gun, then a 3M bristle disc then MEK to clean the mess up
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Old 08-09-2009, 02:32 PM   #5
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Thanks Aerowood! If nothing else, scraping all that vulkum off builds up the arms!
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