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Old 07-08-2004, 09:50 PM   #15
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If you replace them be sure to go with good lexan, not just plexi. I have plexi in mine and it gets scratched and is beginning to get a little foggy looking. I'll probably have to replace it with lexan someday.
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Old 07-08-2004, 10:51 PM   #16
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Talk to me about Lexan!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stefrobrts
If you replace them be sure to go with good lexan, not just plexi. I have plexi in mine and it gets scratched and is beginning to get a little foggy looking. I'll probably have to replace it with lexan someday.
Where do you get it? I'm thinking of just replacing them now since this trailer is in not bad cosmetically, but very unused shape. Tell me all you know about Lexan.

pf
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Old 07-09-2004, 01:39 AM   #17
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Lexan same as polycarbonate?

I am thinking that lexan may be a brand name and that it is basically polycarbonate. If that is true then you might check out Tap Plastics. The following site gives some description of polycarbonate.

http://www.tapplastics.com/info/polycarbonate.php?

I understand that Inland sells replacement lexan windows that come with a stainless steel moulding around their edges that I think is intended to help make the window hold the correct curve. If it is desirable to have stainless trim aroung the plastic then you could check out what Inland has to offer or maybe get some extrusion from some place like the following:

http://www.crlaurence.com/ProductPag...35&Path=::7135

I think that the replacement windows that Inland sells are 1/8" thick lexan.

Malcolm
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Old 07-09-2004, 02:43 AM   #18
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I've also heard Tap Plastics is a good source, but I haven't looked into it much for myself yet. If you do please be sure and let us know how it goes and how the installation goes.
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Old 07-09-2004, 06:09 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pinkflamingoes
Where do you get it? I'm thinking of just replacing them now since this trailer is in not bad cosmetically, but very unused shape. Tell me all you know about Lexan.

pf
Andy at Inland sells Lexan replacements for your Corning windows.
Terry
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Old 07-09-2004, 07:14 AM   #20
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Lexan is the brand name for polycarbonate plastic, it's also what hockey players use for their visors. The visors have a clear plastic sheet stuck to the inside to prevent shattering if they are broken, ie hit with a hard rubber puck at 70 miles an hour. Wonder if that stuff is sold in bulk?

Plexiglass is the brand name for clear acrylic. Not as strong and has the fogging issues mentioned.
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Old 07-09-2004, 11:37 AM   #21
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lexan windows

Quote:
Originally Posted by AYRSTRM2
Lexan is the brand name for polycarbonate plastic, it's also what hockey players use for their visors. The visors have a clear plastic sheet stuck to the inside to prevent shattering if they are broken, ie hit with a hard rubber puck at 70 miles an hour. Wonder if that stuff is sold in bulk?

Plexiglass is the brand name for clear acrylic. Not as strong and has the fogging issues mentioned.
Thank you. I visited Andy's site and priced some windows. All I have to do is decide whether we want to replace them or not...has anyone put in their own Lexan windows, is it hard to do? If it's easy, we may just go ahead and do it, the fogging issue isn't such a big deal with me. My problem is that every time I look at these windows I worry about them breaking. I would rather travel without the worry because we intend to put this trailer through some Use with a capital U. What I'll probably do is start with the front window that we definitely need to replace anyway because it's now plywood...and see how it goes.

This won't happen for a while, we need to do work on the bellypan and frame first, after we gut the thing!
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Old 07-09-2004, 12:12 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pinkflamingoes
...All I have to do is decide whether we want to replace them or not...has anyone put in their own Lexan windows, is it hard to do? If it's easy, we may just go ahead and do it, the fogging issue isn't such a big deal with me...
I have been waiting since last week for someone to ask a Lexan window replacement question as I just finished installing one in my ’67 Overlander to replace a broken Plexiglas version, and wanted to share the experience.

So, pinkflamingoes, since you have the same year Airstream as I, the following is a recap of the experience.

Edit: I now have a webpage that outlines the procedure in more detail.

My owners manual lists a procedure for replacing a window. In short, “Remove screws, unhook lever, & remove window. Your new window will come with a new metal top-piece already attached. Reinstall window, replace screws, and fill outside seam with approved goop”. Actually, their instructions along with their sketches helped a lot.

The new Lexan from Andy did not come with a new metal top strip strip. Not that it bothered me - his picture did not show one, and until I read my owners manual, I did not know windows had ever come with one.

So, I grabbed my tools and headed out for what appeared to be a short task. All five mounting screws broke off flush. Ended up drilling them out. Then, the doggone window would not detach from its groove due to all the approved goop in the seam.

I finally got it out. Then, it took at least an hour to get the Plexiglass pieces out of the old top piece.

The installation went okay. I also replaced the gaskets on the window since it was a good opportunity.

The new Lexan window is about 1/8” thick like the glass would be. I went with the frameless windows Andy sells because the rest of my windows are frameless (the Plexiglas window I replaced was framed). Here’s the issue: Although the sun will help settle the Lexan over time, there is a gap at the center bottom of the window when it is closed. Basically, the bottom window clips, and the gasket are in sort of a tug of war. Since the Lexan is not as stiff as glass, it ends up bowing a bit. The framed windows, I believe, would probably not have this problem. To do it over again, I would still go with the frameless Lexan as I like the way it looks.

In your case, I would dread having to remove the glass from the top piece if it was broken, and ESPECIALLY if it was not broken.

Hope this helps,
Tom
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Old 07-09-2004, 02:19 PM   #23
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Thanks. Looks like our challenge will be getting the old corning ones out without breaking them.

Also, I read in a few other posts that the Lexan windows will, over time, bow to the proper shape. I don't know if this is true or how you can maybe encourage that.

We're not replacing our windows for some time. In a few months I'd like to get in touch and hear how you like the new window? Whether the gap goes away and overall experience.



Quote:
Originally Posted by tcwilliams
I have been waiting since last week for someone to ask a Lexan window replacement question as I just finished installing one in my ’67 Overlander to replace a broken Plexiglas version, and wanted to share the experience.

So, pinkflamingoes, since you have the same year Airstream as I, the following is a recap of the experience.

My owners manual lists a procedure for replacing a window. In short, “Remove screws, unhook lever, & remove window. Your new window will come with a new metal top-piece already attached. Reinstall window, replace screws, and fill outside seam with approved goop”. Actually, their instructions along with their sketches helped a lot.

The new Lexan from Andy did not come with a new metal top strip strip. Not that it bothered me - his picture did not show one, and until I read my owners manual, I did know windows had ever come with one.

So, I grabbed my tools and headed out for what appeared to be a short task. All five mounting screws broke off flush. Ended up drilling them out. Then, the doggone window would not detach from its groove due to all the approved goop in the seam.

I finally got it out. Then, it took at least an hour to get the Plexiglass pieces out of the old top piece.

The installation went okay. I also replaced the gaskets on the window since it was a good opportunity.

The new Lexan window is about 1/8” thick like the glass would be. I went with the frameless windows Andy sells because the rest of my windows are frameless (the Plexiglas window I replaced was framed). Here’s the issue: Although the sun will help settle the Lexan over time, there is a gap at the center bottom of the window when it is closed. Basically, the bottom window clips, and the gasket are in sort of a tug of war. Since the Lexan is not as stiff as glass, it ends up bowing a bit. The framed windows, I believe, would probably not have this problem. To do it over again, I would still go with the frameless Lexan as I like the way it looks.

In your case, I would dread having to remove the glass from the top piece if it was broken, and ESPECIALLY if it was not broken.

Hope this helps,
Tom
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Old 07-09-2004, 04:49 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pinkflamingoes
I read in a few other posts that the Lexan windows will, over time, bow to the proper shape. I don't know if this is true or how you can maybe encourage that.
I hear this often as well, and in the case of Lexan I think it's hooey. Lexan will not mold or take a set unless heated to at least 300 degrees Fahrenheit. I hope the interior of your trailer does not routinely get that warm!

At normal temperatures, you can bend a piece of Lexan 90 degrees or more, leave it there for months, and it will return to its original shape instantly upon being released.

I have had one Lexan window in my Caravel, with the stainless trim pieces to help hold its shape, for over a year. It has not developed the slightest curvature. That's why I'm going to try to mold one in an oven.

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Old 07-09-2004, 05:07 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rluhr
I hear this often as well, and in the case of Lexan I think it's hooey. Lexan will not mold or take a set unless heated to at least 200 degrees Fahrenheit...
Gee Rich, I feel so much better about my situation after your words of comfort

I somwhat suspected what you said is true. I still have the old SS frame from the plexiglas window I replaced. I can alway modify my Lexan window to fit the frame it if the curvature really bothers me. I will give these hot days in AL a chance to prove you wrong for a while before I do anything else.

Don't expect a followup post

Thanks,
Tom
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Old 07-09-2004, 05:28 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pinkflamingoes
Thanks. Looks like our challenge will be getting the old corning ones out without breaking them.

Also, I read in a few other posts that the Lexan windows will, over time, bow to the proper shape. I don't know if this is true or how you can maybe encourage that..
Maybe a hair drier set on "low" will encourage this?
Anyone have any luck trying this?
Terry
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Old 07-09-2004, 05:40 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by argosy20
Maybe a hair drier set on "low" will encourage this?
Anyone have any luck trying this?
Terry
I'll do you one better. In our first experiment, we tried molding them in place (installed on the Caravel), using a heat gun, which is sort of a hair dryer on steroids. We did this on an 80-degree sunny day.

Using an infrared thermometer, we were able to see the central area heated by the gun reach about 170 degrees. This took about 10 minutes of continuous heating. It was impossible to get the entire pane of Lexan heated evenly using this technique, because once we moved to a different area of the plastic it cooled off quickly.

And in any case, without reaching 220 or so, there wouldn't be any molding of the Lexan.

The second experiment involved a heat lamp and the heat gun simultaneously. No luck that way either.

That's why the third experiment -- to be conducted this weekend -- will involve a Thermador oven!

-- Rich
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Old 07-09-2004, 06:06 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rluhr
I'll do you one better. In our first experiment, we tried molding them in place (installed on the Caravel), using a heat gun, which is sort of a hair dryer on steroids. We did this on an 80-degree sunny day.

Using an infrared thermometer, we were able to see the central area heated by the gun reach about 170 degrees. This took about 10 minutes of continuous heating. It was impossible to get the entire pane of Lexan heated evenly using this technique, because once we moved to a different area of the plastic it cooled off quickly.

And in any case, without reaching 220 or so, there wouldn't be any molding of the Lexan.

The second experiment involved a heat lamp and the heat gun simultaneously. No luck that way either.

That's why the third experiment -- to be conducted this weekend -- will involve a Thermador oven!

-- Rich
I will assume if I don't hear of big red trucks with flashing lights arriving at your house that the experiment was successful.
Terry
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