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Old 06-16-2012, 06:01 PM   #1
3 Rivet Member
1972 25' Tradewind
fort lauderdale , Florida
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 181
Shell on floor replacement questions

I'm in the process of a shell on floor replacement. The main reason for the shell on is b/c I do not have the means or funds for a warehouse. I am going to attempt to remove the floor, paint the frame and replace the floor in stages. I currently reside in south florida and since my trailer is outside, I don't want the entire floor out if a hurricane comes. Otherwise, I'll have one big aluminum ballon

I removed a piece of the front floor today and noticed a couple things.

1. The most forward piece of ply is 3/4 but it splices up to 5/8 w/ a 5/8 shim underneath. Is/was this the norm in airstream construction. The same applies in the rear. The PO removed the rear in hopes of a renovation but decided to sell. I purchased it gutted w/ the exterior plywood temporarily fastened for transportation.

2. I've read in the forums that during a shell off the front and rear c channels stay attached to the shell. Seems like its going to be a trick to remove the forward elevator bolts, being that they are under the c channel. Suggestions for easiest removal?

I hope the attached pics help with my explanation.

I also have noticed some rust issues on the frame and want to know what i may need to replace. I will address that to the forum soon.

thank you in advance
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Old 06-16-2012, 10:11 PM   #2
Rivet Master
purman's Avatar
1968 28' Ambassador
Cedaredge , Colorado
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 2,542
There is a 5/8 shim between all the joints on the floor. Not sure why the front and rear are 3/4. is the floor level?

Are you saying the middle pieces are 5/8 and the ends are 3/4? if so, maybe the ends have just swollen with water damage. They should all be 5/8 as far as I understand. Unless they have been replaced before with the wrong thickness.

Unless the rust is all the way through the frame you should be able to wire brush it and use some Por15 on it. This will kill the rust and protect the frame from future rust. if it's bad you can weld in some metal to help reinforce it. I did on mine. Not because of rust but because of rear end sag. when we bent the frame back straight It probably weakened it, so we put some 3/16 steal in.
You can see it here.

May you have at least one sunny day, and a soft chair to sit in..

2008 5.7 L V8 Sequoia
AIR # 31243
WBCCI # 6987
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Old 06-17-2012, 11:26 AM   #3
3 Rivet Member
1972 25' Tradewind
fort lauderdale , Florida
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 181
Thanks Purman,

I measured a few different areas today and the top layer is ALL 3/4". I measured 2 or 3 places yesterday but they must of been compressed to 5/8" in those areas. I thought it seemed odd to have 3/4 and 5/8 flooring.

After talking with my brother, I've decided to do the entire floor/frame at one time instead of piece meal. I have 4 augers to strap down the trailer and I'm also adding a few concrete footers on each side of the trailer for added security. It will make the floor replacement process alot quicker in the long run.

Any members who have done a shell on floor replacement, did you attached the flooring in the front through the C-channel? Seems like the logical way to go.

thank you
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