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Old 02-20-2016, 08:05 PM   #1
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1991 34' Excella
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Bolts in the C Channel

I'm replacing the sub floor with the shell on. I'm don't understand how to get the plywood into the c channel with these bolts in the way. Please any information on how to resolve this would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 02-20-2016, 08:15 PM   #2
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You have to cut the bolts out (or remove them if by some miracle they are not rusty hulks) and replace them.


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Old 02-20-2016, 08:26 PM   #3
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How do you replace them once the new plywood is in?
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Old 02-20-2016, 09:00 PM   #4
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You need to remove the lower interior skins and belly pan.
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Old 02-20-2016, 11:02 PM   #5
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In a pinch, I suppose you could take the interior skins out and run some 1/4" lag bolts through the c channel and the new plywood.

It wouldn't be as good as the through bolts passing through the ends of the outriggers, but I suspect that it would be good enough. The loss in quality could be compensated for with quantity of bolts.


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Old 02-21-2016, 01:13 PM   #6
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Could you not notch your decking to allow for the existing bolts, then install new bolts where you can get at them? Don
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Old 02-21-2016, 02:27 PM   #7
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Here is my solution. Leave the bolts alone! See Photo I made a cardboard pattern, cut it and transcribed it onto the 3/4 plywood. Sorry I cannot figure out how to get image here. It is not as straight forward as on the Airforum classified. Any way it worked fine; plenty of strength in the plywood to bridge the gaps.
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Old 02-21-2016, 02:37 PM   #8
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Send me your e-mail address and I'll send you several really good photos tomorrow.
rday@zipcon.net.
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Old 02-21-2016, 03:21 PM   #9
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When I did this years ago, I was advised by Forum members that these bolts anchor the wood flooring as a structural member of the "monocoque" type of construction employed in an airstream. So it is important to bolt the floor to the channel.

Cutting indents to fit the wood without being bolted to the channel would lessen the strength.

Thus it is also helpful to have one continuous piece of flooring running side to side.


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Old 02-21-2016, 04:08 PM   #10
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My take is that the bolts hold the c channel to the frame and the skin is riveted to the c channel. The bolts pass through the edge of the floor but really have little to do with the floor. The problem with the "elephant ear" method of putting in a replacement piece of flooring is that if the bolts are really bad and not replaced the frame may seperate from the stiffer monco of the shell. Nothing much to do with the floor. A bolt that near the edge of the pywood has no holding power on the plywood sheet.
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Old 02-21-2016, 04:20 PM   #11
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I was glad to see this post/thread, because it raises an issue that has left me greatly confused and which I will soon have to address.

I'm mostly gutted and am just taking off the interior skin(s). Most of the bottoms are off, so I can see the junction of the shell and subfloor.

Before getting this far, I expected to see the subfloor edges inserted neatly into an inward-opening, full-perimeter c-channel, just as my fellow Okie, MellisiJ, expects to install hers (his?) into and of which a good photo is supplied. But my subfloor isn't inserted into a c-channel: it appears to run under one which opens upward. I have yet to decipher how the two are attached: nuts, bolts, screws or studs?

In those areas where the subfloor has rotted away, I'm able to peer into where it used to be and see no inward facing c-channel, full-perimeter or otherwise.

So, what's up? It seems I have a fundamental misunderstanding of how this ol' gal is assembled.
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Old 02-21-2016, 04:45 PM   #12
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the floor is is an integral part of the body and does provide structural support for the body . cut bolts off with die grinder and replace as you go . if you do not then the body / frame connection is lost . yes you have to remove the belly wrap for access . an alternate would be 1/4" self tapping elevator bolts , predrill plywood and then screw into out riggers same as cross members. if you do not bolt/screw to out riggers body is floating on frame .
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Old 02-21-2016, 05:27 PM   #13
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I did the same thing Devanander E-9 did and have had no problems. I used Nylo Board and notched it where the bolts went from the C-channel thru the sub floor into the end of the outriggers. The rest of the Nylo board slide into the C channel with some persusion. I secured the rest of the new floor to the frame (after painting frame with POR 15) using self tapping screws. The template for the notches was tricky and took some time to get a good tight fit. Will try to attach a picture.
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Old 02-21-2016, 06:31 PM   #14
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Getting it done and getting it done the right way are two different things.

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Old 02-21-2016, 07:15 PM   #15
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At the end of last year I removed the carpet and cut out two each 2'x2' sections of plywood where water leakage along the sides near the front of the A/S caused minor rot to the floor. It was soft upon walking on these two small areas. A template was made from cardboard and the new plywood was notched and beveled (using a wood file) to accomodate the tight fit (bolts and C-Channel lips. I used a rubber mallot to hammer in the plywood then secured the plywood with self tapping screws. I completed the task because the frame started to separate on the front end. We took a three hundred mile trip afterwards and the work appears to be holding. Good luck on your project. jd
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Old 02-21-2016, 07:16 PM   #16
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If not wanting to take the belly wrap off, why not just cut out some small access holes for getting a wrench underneath?
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Old 02-21-2016, 09:45 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by delongj View Post
At the end of last year I removed the carpet and cut out two each 2'x2' sections of plywood where water leakage along the sides near the front of the A/S caused minor rot to the floor. It was soft upon walking on these two small areas. A template was made from cardboard and the new plywood was notched and beveled (using a wood file) to accomodate the tight fit (bolts and C-Channel lips. I used a rubber mallot to hammer in the plywood then secured the plywood with self tapping screws. I completed the task because the frame started to separate on the front end. We took a three hundred mile trip afterwards and the work appears to be holding. Good luck on your project. jd
Always have been curious about front end separation. Do you have any pics?
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Old 02-22-2016, 07:27 AM   #18
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I guess my earlier comment didn't go far enough ! the bolts through the out riggers tie body INCLUDING th side wall to the frame ! the side walls help to support the frame . the plywood flooring ( fastened to the crossmembers ) add lateral support.
the walls support the frame , the frame supports the walls = much stronger together than separate ! the original designers thought this through = 50 year old tt's that still hold together . do it right / do it wrong it's your trailer , the bolts serve a purpose !!!!!!!
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Old 02-23-2016, 08:14 PM   #19
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Interior skins removed, belly pan off as well. I have read somewhere that once I remove these boots that the shell could crush in the C-channel. Has anyone heard of this? Do I need to brace this some way?
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Old 02-24-2016, 07:43 AM   #20
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I only redid sections, but I say this will not happen.

You may need wedges for either side of the plywood you are slipping in, but the shell will not crush in.


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