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Old 06-10-2013, 12:58 PM   #1
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belly wrap repair 2000 Safari

We went to Long Key last December for a week in the state park. Had a great time. When we pulled out the morning we left the belly wrap was fine. When we arrived at our winter spot, about 250 miles north, I noticed the belly wrap was pulled away from the wheel well and water heater area. While we were on the road something caught the gas line near where it goes through the floor to the water heater and jerked it hard enough into the belly wrap to pull several rivets loose. Luckily, it did not cut or kink the copper to create a gas leak. I do not know what I hit in the road. I always look the hitch area and the tires every time I stop. I only stopped twice, for fuel and food, and did not notice, so it had to have happened in the last 100 miles, after the last stop. I did not take a picture at the time, I was too upset to think. Next day I contacted ODM (those guys are always helpful) to find out what I would need to fix it. After sorting that out I decided I could repair when I got home, instead of repairing it there. I straightened and fastened the wrap as best I could with a hammer,a block of wood, and two screw in the ripped out rivet holes. This is what it looks like now.
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I will try to remember to take photos of every step and post them here.
This will be my first experience with a sheet metal repair. I got everything I need (I hope) from ODM last week. Now waiting for a break in the rain to start drilling out rivets. Between showers, I pulled loose a portion of the vinyl insert from the rub rail to see how it was put together. I have replace vinyl inserts on my older trailers, so I was surprised to find the vinyl on my 2000 Safari is installed with adhesive. There is no slot in the rub rail metal that holds the vinyl in place.

I am not planning to remove the banana wrap. I am going to cut the metal just in front of it and tuck the new sheet metal in front of the old, so the joint will only be visible if you lay on the ground and look up. We'll see how that plan goes!

So, here is my first questions:
Will my old vinyl stay in place if I re-glue it? If it will, what type of adhesive should I use?
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Old 06-10-2013, 01:00 PM   #2
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Is the belly wrap steel or aluminum?

John S.
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Old 06-10-2013, 01:06 PM   #3
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Aluminum
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Old 06-10-2013, 01:17 PM   #4
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Rubrail Trim

So, here is my first questions:
Will my old vinyl stay in place if I re-glue it? If it will, what type of adhesive should I use?[/QUOTE]

I replaced all the rubrail and beltline trim on my Bambi last year and when I took off the old stuff, there was lots of dirt on the back side and much of the adhesive came off of it and was stuck to the metal, so I wouldn't recommend trying to reuse it. The hardest part of the job was cleaning the metal to put the new stuff on. I used 3M gasket adhesive in the black tube. Didn't have to use much of it but needed it in a few places.

ODM may have the trim in stock, if not, I'm sure they can get it for you. Beware though, the part you replace will look so good that you'll want to do the rest of it!!! Good luck, tb
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Old 06-10-2013, 02:15 PM   #5
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Thanks for your advice. I have some of that adhesive already. I did notice all the gunk that has penetrated behind the rub rail. I'm only pulling back about 3-4', so I'm going to try to re-glue.
I have been looking at the new metal and already notice the difference. I think it will look ok. Guess I'll have to wash and wax under there.
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Old 06-13-2013, 06:57 PM   #6
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I began by removing stabilizer and the gas line to the water heater. When I crawled underneath to get at the stabilizer bolts I could see up into the opening where the metal was ripped. I could see that the gas line was kinked. I will have to replace that sectionl. Add that new gas line to the to do list.
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Next I removed the rub rail and the water heater door, fastend with both screws and rivets. After that I drilled out all the rivets in the sheet metal. I scored the old aluminum with a utility knife several times until it was almost cut through. Then I flexed the metal at the score until is broke in a straight line along the score. I think this leaves a better edge than using snips. There was one part of the wrap, that went under the belly pan, that I had to cut with snips. Then I took a hook blade utility knife to cut the caulk joint behind the rub rail. The old belly wrap came out easily after the caulk was cut. Just below the awning rail I fond a wet spot in the floor, a leak I did not know about. Looks like the water is coming in around the fasteners at the awning support bracket. The floor is discolored but it is solid, so it is a fairly new leak. Add sealant on the fasteners to the list.
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Made a run to the hardware for a piece of copper pipe for the gas line. When I got back he temperature started to climb (93F in the shade). The area I was working in gets sunny for a few hours just after noon, so I took the sheet metal inside the garage. I laid it out onto the concrete floor and used a 2lb hammer to flatten all the creased, warped, and kinked places in the old metal. Afterward I clamped the old metal on top of the new metal and used it as a pattern. I scribed the perimeter with a utility knife. I drilled all of the new rivet holes using the old rivet holes as a guide, then removed the old metal. I kept cutting the scored lines with the utility knife until almost cut through. I drilled a hole at the intersecting lines to relieve stress then flexed the scores until the metal broke in a straight line. I did use the aviation snips on the short cuts.
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I went back outside to start installing the sheet metal. But, before I got anything done a really bad wind/rain/lightning storm ended my day. Another day and hopefully I can get it done!

The pros would have finished this total job in 3-4 hours, but I'm not half done and I have more than 6 hours invested.
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Old 06-13-2013, 07:03 PM   #7
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Advice needed

While I have part of the rub rail loose, should I go ahead and take it off across the rear of the trailer to get at the hatch cover and caulk that joint.

I'm not sure if my trailer is one of those that gets water from the rear hatch cover directed onto the floor.
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Old 06-18-2013, 08:24 PM   #8
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I almost finished before I thought about taking another photo. I installed the metal, re-installed the jack plate, re-installed the stabilizer, fabricated then installed a new gas line, caulked the joint behind the rub rail, re-installed the water heater door, sealed the inside of the wheel well, and filled around the pipe openings with mastic.
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When I got to the rub rail insert I was stumped at how to hold it in place while the adhesive dried. I finally realize I would have to wedge it in place. I used a few finger tight screws between the metal and vinyl to hold it temporarily until the adhesive cured.
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I took a break and went camping! Woke up to rain this morning so I came home. It rained most of this evening. Hope it will be dry tomorrow, since I still need to caulk the top of the rub rail to the skin. 15 more minutes and I'll be done.

I've taken about 8 hours to do this repair, so far. (A large portion of that time looking for my tools that I had not used in years, another large portion trying to remember what I was looking for when I went to get them)
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Old 06-18-2013, 08:31 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A W Warn View Post
While I have part of the rub rail loose, should I go ahead and take it off across the rear of the trailer to get at the hatch cover and caulk that joint.

I'm not sure if my trailer is one of those that gets water from the rear hatch cover directed onto the floor.
yes.
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Old 06-18-2013, 08:57 PM   #10
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Thanks Terry!

Quote:
Originally Posted by A W Warn
While I have part of the rub rail loose, should I go ahead and take it off across the rear of the trailer to get at the hatch cover and caulk that joint.

I'm not sure if my trailer is one of those that gets water from the rear hatch cover directed onto the floor.

Quote:
Originally Posted by overlander63 View Post
yes.
So now I guess 2-3 hours instead of 15 minutes. Oh well!
I appreciate your response!
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Old 06-19-2013, 05:33 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A W Warn View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by A W Warn
While I have part of the rub rail loose, should I go ahead and take it off across the rear of the trailer to get at the hatch cover and caulk that joint.

I'm not sure if my trailer is one of those that gets water from the rear hatch cover directed onto the floor.



So now I guess 2-3 hours instead of 15 minutes. Oh well!
I appreciate your response!
Glad I could help...
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Old 08-18-2013, 11:22 AM   #12
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restore/repair plywood with epoxy question

After reading Terry's post I went out and probed the floor along the rear bumper. This area is beneath the bed and shower in my trailer, so I could only get to that portion that is under the bed. Where I probed it was solid and did not yield to a narrow screwdriver pushed down through the carpet, so I thought all was well.

Last week we went camping to Mt Pisgah, where it was real misty with light rain the whole time we were there. I think the moisture got to the water heater control module, anyway it went out. So we came home early and since the WH was 14 years old I decide t ordered a new water heater. (I have already installed it) I had to remove a portion of the bed to get to the rear of the water heater to disconnect the plumbing. Along the rear of the trailer I noticed some moisture beneath the plastic covering the carpet. It's been raining almost every day for the last two months, so I assumed it was condensation. After removing the plastic and lifting the carpet and padding I found out I have had a problem with water coming in where the rear bumper lid penetrates through the wall. I'm really thankful it is plywood, not OSB!!! It has a soft spot or two and is discolored, but the plywood is still intact.

After repairing the leak along the beltline, I think I will be using one of the two part liquid epoxies to restore/repair the plywood. Looks like I will need to treat 6 to 8 square feet of plywood.

I am considering this product http://www.abatron.com/building-and-...iquidwood.html

If any of you have done this type of repair and used this or a similar product, will you share how much liquid it takes? I have not found any information about absorption rates.
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Old 08-18-2013, 12:24 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A W Warn View Post
After reading Terry's post I went out and probed the floor along the rear bumper. This area is beneath the bed and shower in my trailer, so I could only get to that portion that is under the bed. Where I probed it was solid and did not yield to a narrow screwdriver pushed down through the carpet, so I thought all was well.

Last week we went camping to Mt Pisgah, where it was real misty with light rain the whole time we were there. I think the moisture got to the water heater control module, anyway it went out. So we came home early and since the WH was 14 years old I decide t ordered a new water heater. (I have already installed it) I had to remove a portion of the bed to get to the rear of the water heater to disconnect the plumbing. Along the rear of the trailer I noticed some moisture beneath the plastic covering the carpet. It's been raining almost every day for the last two months, so I assumed it was condensation. After removing the plastic and lifting the carpet and padding I found out I have had a problem with water coming in where the rear bumper lid penetrates through the wall. I'm really thankful it is plywood, not OSB!!! It has a soft spot or two and is discolored, but the plywood is still intact.

After repairing the leak along the beltline, I think I will be using one of the two part liquid epoxies to restore/repair the plywood. Looks like I will need to treat 6 to 8 square feet of plywood.

I am considering this product http://www.abatron.com/building-and-...iquidwood.html

If any of you have done this type of repair and used this or a similar product, will you share how much liquid it takes? I have not found any information about absorption rates.
I did not know about Abatron products when I needed this type of product. It appears that Abatron products do not have the strong chemical odor issues that some other products have.

You may also want to research the products by the Rot Doctor CPES™-Wood based epoxy products to repair and resist wood rot.

I had a small area that was similar to yours. I repaired the leak and dried out the wood really well first. Then I used CPES (clear penetrating epoxy sealer) from the Rot Doctor and then used their regular epoxy over top of the area I treated with their CPES. That was two years ago and the repair is still good.

The folks at the Rot Doctor are very helpful on the phone. They will tell you how much of their products you need and how to apply. They will also share more than you ever thought you needed to know about water damaged plywood.

The downside is that you need a good respirator, protective clothing, and good ventilation while working with CPES. But I think their products and customer support is great.
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Old 08-19-2013, 09:58 PM   #14
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I have started a different thread for my floor repair. Here>>>>
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f36/...ml#post1342968
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