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Old 04-28-2013, 02:55 PM   #1
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1978 29' Ambassador
1974 25' Tradewind
1974 27' Overlander
Indiana , Pennsylvania
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Please...Please...No Silicone

If you care about leaks and if you ever pass your Airstream on to not use silicone to seal the outside of your trailer. While I have read many threads regarding silicone...I had the unpleasant task of removing a silicone mess, left from a well intentioned PO, on our "78" Ambassador. The entire door frame was silicone from top to bottom. In some places it peeled away fairly easy...but at the end of the day some silicone could not be removed. I tried every solvent and silicone softener I could think of...still it did not remove all the silicone. There were even some areas where the aluminum appeared to be etched by the silicone. silicone!

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Old 04-28-2013, 07:49 PM   #2
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Did you try a heat gun?

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Old 04-28-2013, 07:51 PM   #3
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1968 24' Tradewind
Rural, blink and you'll miss it , Missouri
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Indeed POs with their silicone ways are not my friends either.
Not knowing enough to be afraid... (I know more than I did, but I did it anyway!)


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Old 04-28-2013, 08:17 PM   #4
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I used Citristrip with some success. I had some left over from stripping paint from the aluminum. After purchasing every known product, I said heck, I might as well try it and it worked really well.
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Old 04-28-2013, 08:44 PM   #5
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1973 23' Safari
Encino , California
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I've removed silicon with crepe sole sticks
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Old 04-28-2013, 09:54 PM   #6
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I hate to be a spoil sport, but.....I went to Home Depot and bought a bottle of Silicone remover. It is a gooey mess but after sitting and soaking the silicone for a while I was able to get most of it off. Reapplied and scrubbed the rest off.
"If it can't be reduced, reused, repaired, rebuilt, refurbished, refinished, resold, recycled or composted
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Old 04-29-2013, 05:08 AM   #7
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Bloomington , Indiana
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I've probably removed about a mile's worth of silicone from Betty - at least it seems that way! Most came of pretty easily, especially in the bathroom where it didn't adhere to the fiberglass very much at all, and most of the stubborn spots responded well to repeated applications of Citrus strip. Since the clear coat on the exterior is shot, I wasn't concerned about it being damaged by the stripper.

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Old 04-29-2013, 10:17 AM   #8
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1980 31' Excella II
Sprung Leak , North Carolina
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Biggest problem I have had with silicone is the residue it leaves, it you don't get it ALL off your new proper sealant doesn't stick very well at all.

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Old 08-24-2014, 08:00 PM   #9
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1964 22' Safari
Walnut Creek , California
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 21
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I just spent a portion of the weekend removing silicone used to seal the refrigerator scoop. I was able to get it off the AS body by using razor blades (very carefully), Gum-out and friction. I was very lucky it didn't etch the aluminum. Now I have to figure out how to get it off the bottom of the scoop itself.

I'm will use butyl tape and Trempro 635 to seal it up when I have all the surfaces cleaned and polished of any silicone residue.

The worst thing about the PO's repair is that it didn't really seal the leak. I can't understand why someone would goop up a sealant "on" a seam, but when you get in close and look at's a 1/8" off the seam?!?

Mark, Norby, Nicci and (occasionally) Matt

"The reward for work well done is the opportunity to do more." Jonas Salk
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