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Old 04-30-2019, 01:43 PM   #1
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Sink "unglued" from countertop while towing

Hi all,

Just starting my trip from Florida to Maine and at my first stop ran into a little issue. When I tow, I put things into the sink such as fruits, veggies, cutting board, etc.

Today, when I got to my site, I noticed that the sink is no longer glued to the countertop.

Has anyone had the same issue? What did you use to glue it back together? I've got some silkaflex left over from my solar install that I've been considering... thoughts?

Thanks!
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Old 05-01-2019, 11:07 AM   #2
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In home installation, there are cleats underneath the rim of the sink that are glued or screwed to the solid surface and have screws that tighten thr stainless rim to the bottom of the solid surface. The caulk prevents leaks between the two. RVs use a much thinner solid surface material, so I would bet that the cleats are.joined to the solid surface only by glue, and that has probably broken. The correct adhesive depends on the brand of solid surface material you have. Call Airstream and ask. You will have to support the glue joint from below until it cures, or pull the sink and clamp the cleats until the glue cures then reinstall. Maybe add an extra cleat or two, and carry.less stuff in the sink when traveling.

Or... can the sink be changed to top mount?
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Old 05-01-2019, 11:27 AM   #3
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Hi Foiled Again,

After closer inspection, you are absolutely right. Looks like the sink is glued/caulked to the rim, but there are little brackets holding it in place. Turns out that it's the wood (that holds the brackets) that isn't stuck to the counter anymore.

I'll give Airstream a call and see what they have to say.

Not a big deal, I'll sort it out. But coming from the sailing world and doing the same exact thing with my sailboat... it's clear that these Airstreams are not built with the same kind of durability in mind. In rough seas the boat takes a serious beating and I've never had an issue. However, it would seem that a 3 hour drive with about 10lbs of stuff in the sink is enough for the Airstream to reveal some of its weaknesses!
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Old 05-01-2019, 12:16 PM   #4
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I must admit thatís a new one.

But at least my sink is top-mounted. Itís not going to fall down. The lack of a proper sealant job on mine is a different issue, easily fixed.
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Old 05-01-2019, 12:21 PM   #5
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Undermount sinks supposedly look cool, but the design is inherently weaker than top mount. I have the big lobster bowl sink which is top mounted a d I do carry gobs of stuff in it whenever I travel. But i also know many smart people who have collapsing plastic sinks and load them up, then put them on the floor for travel. Much safer.
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Old 05-01-2019, 12:28 PM   #6
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Sink "unglued" from countertop while towing

Yup. Thatís our experience. The top mount sink gets stuff stored in it underway, but never has fallen out of the opening. I do need to pull it and refresh the caulking around the rim someday.

Iíd be happier with a square-cornered double bowl sink, but thatís another one of those do some other time projects. The round one works ok.
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Old 05-01-2019, 12:33 PM   #7
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I'll bite...

...why on Earth are we going down the road with 10lbs in the sink? 🤔
I admit that is a pretty MM way to mount a sink for an RV, fix it and use it as a sink.

Bob
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Old 05-01-2019, 12:37 PM   #8
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Probably because in my case, DW stores stuff in the sink, and Iím not going to argue with her on that idea. The shower floor also gets all the toiletries in baskets. Iím not going to point out the scratches they cause, either. None, nope, I see nothing!
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Old 05-01-2019, 12:53 PM   #9
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Yes, I had the same issue. The only good repair is to remove the counter top entirely and start over. Terrible design issue. There is no quick and easy fix. I no longer store stuff in the sink when traveling.
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Old 05-01-2019, 01:18 PM   #10
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Hi graysailor,

Looking at the feasibility of doing that as we speak and not exactly sure how I would remove the whole countertop. Seems like a much bigger project then what I currently have the stomach for. If you have some tips on what you did to remove the whole countertop, I'm all ears!

As a little update, I talked to support at Airstream and they were quick and I'm actually quite impressed. I talked about what happened, they said they would call me back with the details of exactly what they used to mount it in the first place... then within 5 minutes he called me back.

Apparently they use either bostik 1100 or Adseal for this job. Looks like neither are at a big box retailer near me unfortunately. The Sikaflex 221 that I used for mounting the solar panels seems like it will fit the bill just fine for right now.

That along with some wood supports and metal 90 degree brackets that go from "wall to wall" should solve the problem with a good degree of overkill. (as an engineer I might have been accused of that before ) Turns out that the wood which holds the sink is only adhered to the countertop with a VERY THIN line of adhesive. To the tune of less than a 1/4" bead with two "S" for the entire length.

Once this is settled I will no longer store stuff in the sink! In the boat it was necessary because everything would slide around all over the place as you tack/jibe. Certainly not the same thing in the Airstream. Old lessons...

Thanks everyone for the input. Will send a picture of the final over engineered solution!
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Old 05-01-2019, 01:20 PM   #11
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Sink "unglued" from countertop while towing

The Airstream ďrolling earthquakeĒ is sure a lot different from the roughest motions of a boat. Boat furniture gets more twisting and racking movement as the boat structure flexes in sea conditions.

We just recently had an under mount triple bowl sink installed under a new stone countertop.

The installer used a lot of metal braces and blocks screwed to the cabinet front and back with many bolts used as jacks positioned to push the sink edge up into the sealant and hold/align it securely. Itís not going anywhere, but Iím not going to get up and dance in it...

Maybe something more sturdy than a few thin wood blocks glued to the underside of the countertop is in order?

Also consider pulling out the countertop and inverting it to make it easier to reattach the sink. You can bet thatís what they did at the factory. Easier to get at the fasteners.
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Old 05-01-2019, 02:37 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by graysailor View Post
Yes, I had the same issue. The only good repair is to remove the counter top entirely and start over. Terrible design issue. There is no quick and easy fix. I no longer store stuff in the sink when traveling.
Ok... so you were right... the only good repair is to remove the counter top and start over...

To clarify, the root cause of the issue is that they tried to glue things to the counter top without first removing all of the dust from cutting the counter top. Obviously the adhesion won't be optimal if I can wipe my fingers on the bottom of it (after it was supposed to be glued there) and have my fingers come out white from the dust.

Something that would take 30 seconds at the factory would make the build quality 10x better. Shame on Airstream for cutting a few corners.

Hopefully me documenting this will prevent some grief for folks in the future!
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Old 05-01-2019, 03:41 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmkrum View Post
Probably because in my case, DW stores stuff in the sink, and Iím not going to argue with her on that idea. The shower floor also gets all the toiletries in baskets. Iím not going to point out the scratches they cause, either. None, nope, I see nothing!
Side note...I just switched all the Fluorescent tubes to LED strips, DW hated all very bright dots, not good.
I re-mounted them under the now disconnected tubes, no more bright spots... no one tell Sandra.😏

Bob
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Old 05-01-2019, 03:58 PM   #14
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Wow - an ounce of prevention....

I think you just voided your warranty
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