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Old 09-28-2012, 02:06 PM   #57
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1960 24' Tradewind
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Originally Posted by 54breadloaf View Post
Anybody ever come across this? I used my old front banana wrap belly skin as a template and found that there was a sealant similar to plumbers putty between the belly skin and the outer shell. I also found this material sealing the window I restored. Seemed logical so I used it for the window but it looks like the old stuff came on a 1" roll, like tape . . .
Might be this Butyl Tape, I got some from VTS:

Butyl RV Putty Tape

Thanks for posting your project.
MarkR
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Old 09-28-2012, 06:49 PM   #58
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Thanks Mark. Do you know of anyone using this product or are they switching to something different?
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Old 09-29-2012, 10:17 AM   #59
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I do not understand where this sealant would be. I do not think that most trailers have any sealant between the belly skin going up and the shell coming down. I would think this would be an issue. You will be putting rivets through both skin and into the channel. I would think that this would limit how well you can buck the rivets.

Some people actually put drain holes into the channel. I would not want a seal there. What that will get in around rivets and windows needs a place to drain, not be stopped by a seal and pool.

But if your trailer was built this way and lasted 60 years, that shoots holes into my theory.
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Old 09-30-2012, 11:41 PM   #60
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There was not sealant in the shell/bellypan/channel joint when I took my '52 appart. I thought it might be a good idea to smear a little vulkem between the pan and skin when I put it back together, but as mentioned above, something as thick as the butyl tape could be problematic.

I just about have the entire frame stripped down and re-painted. Looks great...I'll post some picks maybe tomorrow.

breadloaf, I was planning on making a buck just like you did for the fwd and aft belly pans. Great idea....thanks for sharing the pics!

BTW, what kind of aluminum sheet did you end up going with for the belly pan?

Lee
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Old 10-01-2012, 09:58 AM   #61
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Lee, the PO had 4 4x8 sheets of alum when he sold it to me. They had these numbers drawn on them: 3003 HM 020. I'm assuming they are 20 thousands. Maybe a bit light but it was free and available. I will use something more stout when I build a box to cover the waste tanks as they hang below the belly skins and behind the tires. Just a little added protection. At least on the leading edge. I pieced together and screwed some foam board to the under side of the floor (forward end) yesterday. Looks like it will work out fine. It was way too hot to continue -105 - and had other things to do so ill finish that after I install the U channel for the walls. Anybody know what type of sheet alum I should use for that? Thanks, JT
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Old 10-02-2012, 08:44 PM   #62
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Okay...here's my frame. All repaired, wire-wheeled, and now painted with rust-bullet. Looks really good to me...I'm excited about having most of the dirty work behind me. It's always good to turn the corner and start putting things back together!!! There's not much left to take apart :^)

I've talked with the axle people and the general concensus is that if the original is working (brakes, bearing, etc) and not too worn out, to just clean 'er up and put it back in there. So, aside from welding on new shakles to hang the springs on and new shocks and mounting hardware, I think I'm planning on saving a few dollars and just cleaning the old axle and using it. If anything happens "down the road", I'll just replace the axle itself....should be easy if needed. I'm not planning on tons of miles, just occasional weekends out to our beach property during the summer!!

Hey JT.... I'm planning on using 6061 aluminum sheet for the channel. 6061 is kind of the "stainless steel" of aluminum since it has great corrosion resitance and decently strong. Not sure what I'll end up using for the belly pans. As you mentioned, light gauge probably works just fine....totally not structural, just a dust/rock shield. I might go a little heavier than 0.020, but not my much...maybe 0.032

Thanks,
Lee

Here's a couple of pics:
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Old 10-02-2012, 10:00 PM   #63
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Thanks for the pics Lee. What kind of car is that in the garage? Looks like an appropriate tow vehicle. I ended up buying some .050 aluminum sheet and took it to someone with a shear and a large brake to bend 4 ft. sections for me. I'm sure it will be adequate. I know what you mean about turning the corner and putting things back together. One more dirty job to do is removing the insulation and stripping the paint off the end cap on the dinette end. Can't wait to have it in one large piece again. Keep up the good work.
JT
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Old 03-18-2013, 11:53 PM   #64
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Okay...been a while since I've provided an update. Mostly because I didn't make much progress over the winter. Anyway, here's where I'm at. Finished re-furbishing the axle...one new set of roller bearings and a couple new seals. Fabricated some new spring/axle plates (see photo) and cleaned and verified that the original breaks are working. Installed new leaf spring bushings and welded on all new shackles, etc. I now have the floor almost completely bolted down to the frame and I'm about to order the marmolemum flooring. Once I get the flooring down and I'll install the channels around the edge and I'll work on the belly pan.

Question: I'm planning on running all the wiring through the front panel in the vicinity of the propane tanks...any reason to route the trailer brake wires along the frame rail as it was orginally? Same with the propane line....any reason to run that under the floor? I'm thinking I'll run it through the wall along with the wiring....that way if anything goes wrong, I can get to it by removing the interior panel instead of it being buried between the floor and the belly pan....any comments???

And yes JT...the vehicle in the shop is a '49 Hudson that I hope to one day tow my '52 airstream :-)

Here's a few pictures of the latest progress: 1) new leaf spring plates with shock-mounts that I made out of 1/2" plate steel. 2) getting the axle lined up so I can weld the forward spring shackles. 3) axle installed (except shocks that I have on order). and 4) floor boards with 2 coats of West Marine 2 part expoxy all bolted down.....
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Old 03-19-2013, 09:59 AM   #65
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Hey Riv-nut,

Nice work. I would wait to put the flooring down until you get the shell on. Spins like such a small dimension but you would be surprised at what 1/8" can make when you are trying to get everything to fit just right. Plus, in the future, if you or a future owner wants to change it, here won't be flooring under the C channel. (Or U channel) whatever you might be using. It's good that you are putting the belly pan on before the shell. If you can turn the whole thing upside down, even better to let gravity work in your favor. Use just enough rivets to hold them place around the perimeter so at the shell will slide over the edge of the belly skin. Before you go to all that trouble though, you might want to do a test fit of the shell, just to make sure it's gonna fit. I had mine off and on with trimming in between at least 3 times. I got frustrated and trimmed too much and now have to Mcgiver it so to speak. I'm working on my belly pan now and it's really tough working by myself and trying to get everything to lay flat where it's supposed to and curved where it needs to but ill git-er-dun. The propane line needs to be mounted below the belly pan. The gas is heavier than oxygen and needs to be able to escape. You don't want it to get trapped in that cavity, hit your brakes, make a spark and have your trailer disappear. Somebody already cleared that up for me earlier. Not sure about a reason for the brake wires to run in the frame rail. Seems fine to me to run it through the walls. The "T" fittings for the propane lines should be outside also so you have as few connections inside the trailer as possible. I've been admiring some photos of some restored 49 Oldsmobiles on the interweb and thought they would be perfect for my next project as a tow vehicle.
Anyway, hope this helps. Keep charging! JT
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Old 03-19-2013, 10:31 PM   #66
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My biggest regret is not flipping the frame over, and doing the belly pan that way. It's 10 times harder the right side up.


As mentioned, propane must be outside the trailer. It's not a suggestion, but a requirement for safety.

Looking great so far.
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Old 03-21-2013, 12:02 AM   #67
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Hi Guys..... Huge thanks for taking the time to help me out!! What an awesome resource for amatures like myself. So, your replies stir up a few qestions for me.....

1) The original configuration (from 1952) of the linoleum had it going under the edge channels. I wanted to do this as well just to try to keep the floor completely "sealed" with the flooring as well as I thought it would be easier since I could just trim it off as it hung over the plywood sub floor. If at a later date, the next heir to this trailer wanted to change the floor, they could just cut it at the inner edge of the channels... And if/when I test fit the shell back on top, I could just as easily cut the floor with the flooring on it....so, I guess I'm not sure how putting the flooring on after the shell is on would provide any benefit. Please help me understand this, because I don't want to create more work for myself. What I could see would be a big benefit would be that painting the inside skin prior to putting the floor down would eliminate the chances of screwing up the flooring with paint.....that alone might make me change my mind about putting in the flooring after the shell is on.....

2) Does the propane line really need to be below the belly pan? This seems to me like it would be a higher risk to getting damaged from road debris etc. Gas lines are in people houses and everywhere....I'm surprised that it would be "against the law" to run the copper tubing inside the bellypan. My nose is pretty good and I feel that I would detect a leak prior to it causing any problems.... are there any good threads on the forum that spell this out in gory detail? If I do run it under the belly pan, are there good ways to protect it....like running it in a "pvc conduit" or something....just seems like it would be susceptible to damage.

I justy ordered the Marlmoleum today!!! We ordered the "Dark Bistre"....so, pretty dark, but should really look great when we get it down! It starting to feel like I've got some momentum on my side, so can't wait to keep the ball rolling!

BTW, Your guys's trailers are looking awesome!!! keep up the great work! I would love to set mine upside down to do the belly pan. It would have to be much easier...I'll have to figure out how I can flip it over onto some saw horses or something. It's REALLY heavy now with the floor boards on!

Thanks for the help and the inspriation....you guys are great!!

Lee
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:58 AM   #68
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Hi Lee,

I know it sounds wired with running the propane lines outside the belly skins but think of it this way, besides safety, and trust me after you put the labor in to install the belly skins, you won't ever want to do that again...you will have total access to any future leaks and if you do sell it, you won't be held liable if it blows up. I plan to cover my copper lines with tubing for protection, leaving the joints exposed to identify any future problems.
By the way, your flooring logic sounds right...if you are able to protect it from the elements between the time you install it and the time you put the shell back on. When you paint the interior, just cover the new floor with paper and masking tape. You can get it by the 3 ft. Wide roll at your home center.

JT
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Old 03-23-2013, 10:34 AM   #69
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Okay...thanks JT. I guess under the belly pan it is! Do people usually put it in a conduit of some kind? I was thinking maybe some 3/4" pvc or something?? It will be nice having easy access, but just seems prone to damage.

I'll have to devise a gantry for flipping it over for the belly pan work. The belly pan I think will be my biggest challenge. I've looked around on the forum for some kind of a "step by step" thread, but could find anything. Know of any good threads that spell it out at a kindergarten level for me :-) I'm mainly interested in the best way to install around the axle and wheel wells. I've seem some good photos of the front....that was helpful.

I've started cleaning up the Panel-ray... looks pretty good actually. A good scrub down and some paint on the base and I think it will be ready to go when the time comes.

Thanks for the help!
Lee
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Old 03-29-2013, 09:58 AM   #70
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Hey JT... you talked about "McGivering" your floor when you performed a couple tests fits and it didn't quite fit. What didn't fit? Was it the shape of the radiuses in the corners, width, length? I'm thinking my 22" radius corners will be okay because I measured the perimeter of the shell along the fastener line, and then measured the perimeter of the wood deck around the edge with a steel tape and the shell is 1/2" bigger (47' 7.5" versus 47' 7.0"). Did you try this on yours? Going back to my calculus days in college, this would provide about an 0.08" gap (gap=0.5"/2pi) all the way around. This is obviously a very small gap, but at least it wasn't a 1/2" smaller than the deck . Anyway, just trying to get a feel for what I'm up against!

Thanks,
Lee
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