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Old 03-26-2004, 05:06 AM   #1
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Single sheet vinyl solution?

Quote:
originally posted by Inland RV Center, In
Installing one piece vinyl flooring is not recommended. In time, cracks will appear at every seam in the floor, which is every 4 feet. The floor is joined together underneath, but there is still enough movement in the seams as the shell twists and tweaks.
A floor decking prep dawned on me yesterday that I think holds promise in keeping the sheet vinyl from cracking. In a word, “Rebar”.

The decking is 5/8 inch thick. Route out a series of dados about six inches long, and 3/8 inch deep on six inch centers perpendicular to & centering each plywood seam (i.e. three inches of dado on each piece of plywood). Fill each dado with a six inch length of 1/4-20 allthread and fiberglass resin. After the resin has cured, level the floor and roll out a high grade of vinyl floor covering.

I really think this idea, while it is a lot of effort, will work & I would like to hear comments for or against the plan. As I see it, the worst that can happen is that the vinyl will still crack. What do you think?

Thanks,
Tom
p.s. I free-hand poorly, but:
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Old 03-26-2004, 06:38 AM   #2
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Hmmmm

Kinda sounds like rocket science to me

That is a LOT of effort! You must want sheet vinyl pretty much.

I would maybe consider an alternative like hardwood or something that has the same benefit without altering the structural integrity of the floor. (even though you may be enhancing the structural integrity)

$.02

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Old 03-26-2004, 07:19 AM   #3
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Plywood Rebar

Tom,
The problem with your rebar idea is that normally rebar is in the center of the material. You are depending on the adhesion between the surface of the plywood and the resin to restrain a force with a lot of leverage. Most edge wood joints are in the middle of the two materials. An alternative might be to glue down some 3/16" thick luann plywood on top of your base, bridging the joints, using construction adhesive. The joints in the luann would be supported by the plywood underneath. With such a large gluing surface, the luann would act like just additional layers in the plywood.
Good luck!
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Old 03-26-2004, 07:21 AM   #4
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Biscuits?
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Old 03-26-2004, 07:21 AM   #5
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Happy Hour at the Re Bar

Tom I try to never miss any of your posts. You have stature around here IMHO.... if not tenure yet.
But I think you need to go fishing for a week or something.

Against all odds I must admit I agree with the King o' Karma himself. on this one.

Now I'm doing it....
could we wire those allthread/rebars just right to heat the floor and also act as a intrusion alarm, and in the worse case an electricution device for real bad visitors...and of course an antenna for all kinds of satalite reception ...naw
.......wheres my tackle box.
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Old 03-26-2004, 07:49 AM   #6
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Re: Plywood Rebar

Quote:
Originally posted by sander17
The problem with your rebar idea is that normally rebar is in the center of the material. You are depending on the adhesion between the surface of the plywood and the resin to restrain a force with a lot of leverage...
Thanks for your response! The way I see the forces involved, it is tension, not leverage that is at issue. What would tear the vinyl flooring is the decking being pulled apart by the twisting of the body while being towed.

If it was a leverage issue, i.e. the two sheets of plywood trying to close like a book, I would be more concerned with centering the rebar. As it is, I am trying to provide surface area for the resin to adhere to. Resin in itself does not have a world of tensile strength. But add a structural component, such as fiberglass or allthread (I'm also thinking about wooden dowels to counter disimilar material expansion issues), and you have a fairly strong joint.

Tom
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Old 03-26-2004, 08:17 AM   #7
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Who me?

I could not resist, game on!
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Old 03-26-2004, 08:21 AM   #8
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Tom,

I would suggest the Luan process over the rebar. The luan will still allow flex and you do not have the possibility of the rebar/resin popping out and leaving a lump under the floor.

The reason I say this is because the floor NEEDS to flex. The floor is integral to the structure of the trailer. If the floor cannot flex then the attached shell will have additional stresses placed on the ribs and rivets. The shell is not designed to be attached to a 100% rigid floor sheet.

With that said, how much of the floor are you planning on covering? All of it or just a section that spans a floor joint?
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Old 03-26-2004, 08:36 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by thenewkid64
I would suggest the Luan process over the rebar. The luan will still allow flex and you do not have the possibility of the rebar/resin popping out and leaving a lump under the floor.

The reason I say this is because the floor NEEDS to flex. The floor is integral to the structure of the trailer. If the floor cannot flex then the attached shell will have additional stresses placed on the ribs and rivets. The shell is not designed to be attached to a 100% rigid floor sheet.

With that said, how much of the floor are you planning on covering? All of it or just a section that spans a floor joint?
I agree - the floor needs to flex. The way I see it, my plan will still allow the floor to twist & flex the way it was intended. If you recall, my modifications are on six inch centers. If resisting flex had been my goal, I would have rabbeted out a home for a 6 inch by 96 inch by quarter inch steel plate. What I am attempting to do is keep the seam from pulling apart, a situation in which I find no benefit.

Thanks for your response; This, and the ones above were exactly what I was hoping to get. Oh, and this mod is in preparation for flooring the entire, presently gutted Overlander.

Tom
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Old 03-26-2004, 08:47 AM   #10
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A little experience with sheet vinyl

I must admit, there are many very attractive sheet vinyls available today and it is very easy to be lulled into using it for several reasons.
1. Inexpensive
2. attractive
3. easy to install
4. no seams
5. easy to clean
6. no wax (unless desired)
I am certain there are other reasons but these are a few that come to mind.

I have installed it in houses and Airstreams.

I can tell you from experience, IT WILL TEAR!

It is very difficult to remove due to the adhesive. Most people just lay the next covering right over the old stuff. I have had to remove it myself. I have also been been tasked with removing a nailed down piece of Luan that a PO had put down over some old sheet vinyl in my previous house. That was a SOB, ( Removal process, and I am not saying some other brand). Lets face it, even Home builders install sheet vinyl as a cost savings approach.

I am not a fan of it, but I would recommend square vinyl tiles before I would sheet vinyl.

I am back to my original suggestion, Pergo or a similar hardwood floor will look great, clean easy and will make your unit look more valuable. It also is easy to remove and replace. And most of all, IT WILL NOT TEAR!

Been there done that.

Smily
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Old 03-26-2004, 09:21 AM   #11
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OK Tom let me be serious here for a moment.

I recently removed the lounge (Lshaped) from my1974 trailer. there was no carpet under it. just the orig plywood floor,

There was one small rotted out section that happened to span two of the joints between the plywood. I removed back a little ways into the good plywood. In doing so I of course exposed the edge of the joints (on 2 sides). there was no dirt or grime in the joints..none. the edges looked like new. There was pounds of dirt dust and grime on top of floor (under lounge). Now if the damm floor flleses and the joints open and close wouldnt you assume that dirt would have entered? From the looks of the trailer it has alot of road miles. I have pulled it over 1500 miles. So it has had chances to flex.

Not sure what this is worth but I submit it for the record.

jaco
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Old 03-26-2004, 10:04 AM   #12
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Tom

I would like to put in my $0.02 on this subject.
Here are some methods to keep down the cracking of your sheet goods.

I don't know if I would use Luan for the overlay. It is very pourus and not very structurally sound. I know that it is light but in this case I would go with the better material. I would look for the best plywood overlay I could find locally.
When placeing the overlay, work from the middle outward. This will take more material but will produce a better job. If you must have seams try and watch where they are positioned. Try and keep the joints out of the traffic patterns.

Overlay filler: check the shrinkage rate of your filler some are better than others. Use a latex addmix to the filler this will also cut down on the shrinkage.

Vinyl Sheet: Look at the quality and construction of the vinyl goods. Some have a paper backing of differing thicknesses and some are vinyl all the way thru. Buy the best you can, commercial grade roll ends are very inexpensive usually.

Glue Down: I would reccommend a perimeter glue down vs. the full glue down for two reasons. 1. It will allow more flex of your sheet goods. 2. If it does not work out or you want to change it it is much easier to remove the perimeter glue job than the whole floor glue down.

Vinyl tile: This product will usually solve your problem but you still have to do a bang up job on the preperation work.

I hope this has given you something to help.
Good Luck and happy flooring.
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Old 03-26-2004, 10:18 AM   #13
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Perimeter glue

You are correct that the prep job is imperative to this approach.

If there is any sand particles or any undulations in the surface, the vinyl will bare that undulation and or debris under the vinyl. Not on the first day but over time.

One problem I have noticed with the vinyl and even more pronounced with a perimeter glue approach is that the vinyl sounds "thin", (for lack of a better term), it gives a "crackling" sound, If you ever walked on vinyl before it is glued down, you will know what I am talking about.
I will say this, When I applied sheet vinyl in the galley area of an Airstream, It was not long before I was kicking myself in the keister for not going the distance on something else. When walking on it, it feels cheap, as compared to walking on a padded carpet or a floating wooden floor.

I can also say that I installed a laminate floor for as low as .99 a square foot. The pad is extra. Most sheet vinyl that you look at is at least this much and it is like Janets Hubby said, it is paper backed and tears very easily.

The above approaches are valid and good suggestions but hopefully, my experience with sheet vinyl will save you the kick in the keister when you are done. Go the distance!

Smily
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Old 03-26-2004, 11:03 AM   #14
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flooring underlayment

I have some suggestions. Why don't you put an underlayment of the sheet cork that's reasonably cheap and would give a little more padded feel to the floor- might eliminate the crackling sound.
Also we have glued down vinyl flooring with elmer's glue- don't laugh too hard- just make sure you get all the bubbles out and put weights down on the floor for 24 hours then any trim pieces along the floor ensures edges not coming up. then if you want to remove the vinyl it's not as hard. We did this in a bathroom and it was fine.- you can stop laughing now-

silver suz
P.S. air out your vinyl in a hot place or in the sun for a couple of weeks to get rid of some of the toxic plasticizers. Elmer's glue is also less toxic. Might as well breathe better air in your AS!!
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