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Old 05-14-2010, 08:10 AM   #29
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Why not make the re-enforcement out of aluminum instead of steel?
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Old 05-14-2010, 08:19 AM   #30
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Why not make the re-enforcement out of aluminum instead of steel?
Sooner or later, the aluminum has to touch iron, Rear angle to frame, channel to outriggers, etc.. I was thinking about some sort of insulation for any of these spots.
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Old 05-14-2010, 09:34 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by Birdwell57 View Post
Sooner or later, the aluminum has to touch iron, Rear angle to frame, channel to outriggers, etc.. I was thinking about some sort of insulation for any of these spots.
I don't know how you'd avoid the conductivity of the fasteners, either rivets or screws. Maybe using aluminum rivets would concentrate the corrosion at the rivet-to-frame point and one could periodically replace the rivets? Given that the aluminum sheet is otherwise insulated from the frame, of course.

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Old 05-14-2010, 05:40 PM   #32
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I don't know how you'd avoid the conductivity of the fasteners, either rivets or screws. Maybe using aluminum rivets would concentrate the corrosion at the rivet-to-frame point and one could periodically replace the rivets? Given that the aluminum sheet is otherwise insulated from the frame, of course.

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Didn't even cross my mind. So, it might be better not to try and insulate, which would then concentrate the conductivity to a smaller area around the fasteners. It's back to giving the water that gets in some place to go, and trying to keep water out. What about holes in the tain't, or would that cause a whole other problem with water draining into the waste water tanks pan?
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Old 05-14-2010, 06:43 PM   #33
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Primer and lots of sealant on all mating surfaces is the key. Install all hardware wet with sealant. Keep the moisture out and the bare surfaces of dissimular metals fron contacting each other.
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Old 08-09-2011, 08:05 PM   #34
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Water is a problem at the rear bumper area for sure. I am doing a 79 Argosy and caught the problem before too much damage, but how to fix? Some good ideas here. However, even if one seals the top edge successfully, where is the water that gets into the bumper storage area supposed to go? Just flow on down into the belly pan? I'm thinking of drilling some holes in the bottom of the storage area?
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Old 08-10-2011, 10:27 AM   #35
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... where is the water that gets into the bumper storage area supposed to go? Just flow on down into the belly pan? I'm thinking of drilling some holes in the bottom of the storage area?
Yes, make sure the storage area is "leaky."
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Old 08-14-2011, 06:47 PM   #36
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Stumpjumper,
We have a 1979 also. We drilled holes in the bottom of the storage area to drain. We also sealed the space between the outer alum wall and top of the trunk area but still had a leak. We found that inside the back trunk, where the back frame meets the top (not the lid but the permanent metal "roof" of the trunk), water was running insde there. We ran a bead of vulkem around that and it has ben fine since then. A trick is to get a small mirror and lay in the trunk. It helps to see where the bead of vulkem needs to go.
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Old 08-17-2015, 08:43 PM   #37
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I am thinking of bending a sheet of aluminum at a 90 deg. angle to slid up under the outer skin and under the hose carrier lid hinge. Here is a crude drawing which I hope will explain what I am trying to say.

Attachment 56008

Any ideas on this?
Sorry for digging up an old thread, so if this is better off in a new thread please let me know. Was searching for threads on using a drip edge at the rear bumper and a Google search actually brought me to this one. Was just wondering if many have implemented a drip edge of some kind along the rear bumper as opposed to maintaining sealant along that connection?

I was also wondering if it is necessary to run bolts through the floor when attaching the shell to the frame. Any reason why the floor couldn't have a small notch where each bolt passes through? Doing this may be of no benefit though since access below may still required to tighten the bolts, unless the outer frame utilizes some sort of welded nut strips?

Lastly, has anyone experimented with using a strip of composite material (eg deck board or fascia) along the walls, and then in filling the remainder with plywood? Or would this affect the integrity of the shell/frame connection compared to using full sheets of plywood fastened throughout?

Sorry for so many questions. Just trying to get a sense of the best way to tackle this in the future.
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Old 08-17-2015, 09:20 PM   #38
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Was searching for threads on using a drip edge at the rear bumper and a Google search actually brought me to this one. Was just wondering if many have implemented a drip edge of some kind along the rear bumper as opposed to maintaining sealant along that connection?
Best way is to get rid of the piece of aluminum that runs from below the floor and shell out onto the bumper to support the hinge. Are you taking the shell off, have interior skins removed so you can get to bolts? If so either don't put it back when you put the shell back down, or remove the bolts in the back that pass through it and pull it out. Then put a piece or aluminum up behind the outer skin and c channel, like you were putting a side wrap behind the skins on the sides. Have the aluminum stick down straight then bend it forward under the trailer. It'll block any water from reaching the wood. On top where the frame comes out put a piece in behind the skin as well and bend out along the top of the frame rail do it deflects water away from the wood as well. Seal well.

I was also wondering if it is necessary to run bolts through the floor when attaching the shell to the frame. Any reason why the floor couldn't have a small notch where each bolt passes through? Doing this may be of no benefit though since access below may still required to tighten the bolts, unless the outer frame utilizes some sort of welded nut strips?
Yes bolts need to go through the floor . Without the wood there, when you torque the bolts it would crush the c channel without wood in there for support. I used bolts that have armor coating I got from McMaster Carr. It's a hard coating of aluminum and zinc that helps prevent corrosion. I think they'll be good as new in 30 years. Less worry about galvanic corrosion using stainless fasteners. You can also spray a bunch of galvanizing spray paint on each bolt and in the hole so the zinc corrodes instead of the bolts. You need access to both sides you use bolts and nuts. And washers recommended on each side .

Lastly, has anyone experimented with using a strip of composite material (eg deck board or fascia) along the walls, and then in filling the remainder with plywood? Or would this affect the integrity of the shell/frame connection compared to using full sheets of plywood fastened throughout?
I think this would weaken the whole structure overall.
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Old 08-17-2015, 09:56 PM   #39
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Best way is to get rid of the piece of aluminum that runs from below the floor and shell out onto the bumper to support the hinge. Are you taking the shell off, have interior skins removed so you can get to bolts? If so either don't put it back when you put the shell back down, or remove the bolts in the back that pass through it and pull it out. Then put a piece or aluminum up behind the outer skin and c channel, like you were putting a side wrap behind the skins on the sides. Have the aluminum stick down straight then bend it forward under the trailer. It'll block any water from reaching the wood. On top where the frame comes out put a piece in behind the skin as well and bend out along the top of the frame rail do it deflects water away from the wood as well. Seal well.
l.

Great idea. So if I'm understanding correctly, you would have two L-shaped pieces of aluminum back to back, with the long side of the L's up against the outer skin. The L folded forward toward the front of the trailer would be longer so it terminates under the flooring. The L going out toward the bumper would sit similar to the current aluminum on top of the bumper, but would be bend at a right angle along the inside of the outer skins. Seems like a relatively each fix, with the latter being something Airstream could have done easily with the current piece of aluminum.
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Old 08-17-2015, 10:02 PM   #40
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As far as the subfloor, I've read some posts that say not to use tongue and groove sheets, but I haven't seen an explanation as to why? If the tongue and groove land on a cross member, what would the problem be?

I have a friend that recently built a tiny house on a trailer. He used Advantech tongue and groove for his subfloor/floor and it turned out great. He stained it and applied several coats of poly. It looks great as is (almost looks like cork) and the seams are barely noticeable. I'm not doing a shell off, but thought if I ever were to this might be a great way to go.
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Old 08-18-2015, 10:57 AM   #41
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Great idea. So if I'm understanding correctly, you would have two L-shaped pieces of aluminum back to back, with the long side of the L's up against the outer skin. The L folded forward toward the front of the trailer would be longer so it terminates under the flooring. The L going out toward the bumper would sit similar to the current aluminum on top of the bumper, but would be bend at a right angle along the inside of the outer skins. Seems like a relatively each fix, with the latter being something Airstream could have done easily with the current piece of aluminum.
More or less, I only used the one piece going behind/inside the outer skin extending down below the level of the wood and bent forward. The new top piece for the hinge to attach to will be scribed to fit up against the back of that, the belt line trim will go over that then get a bead of sealant between the belt line and aluminum plate.
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Old 08-18-2015, 11:02 AM   #42
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As far as the subfloor, I've read some posts that say not to use tongue and groove sheets, but I haven't seen an explanation as to why? If the tongue and groove land on a cross member, what would the problem be?

I have a friend that recently built a tiny house on a trailer. He used Advantech tongue and groove for his subfloor/floor and it turned out great. He stained it and applied several coats of poly. It looks great as is (almost looks like cork) and the seams are barely noticeable. I'm not doing a shell off, but thought if I ever were to this might be a great way to go.
You'd probably have a hard time finding T&G subfloor that's the right thickness to fit into the c channel. Also the chances of any of those T&G joints lining up directly over a cross member is about 0%. I don't think I had any cross members that were exactly 48" apart and you want the joints on top of the cross members.
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