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Old 02-11-2014, 10:10 PM   #321
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Getting worse....

Pulled the vinyl back and discovered it was much worse than I hoped. (Unfortunately, hope is not a course of action...)

The rot was widespread, extending most of the way across the back of the trailer.
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Old 02-11-2014, 10:15 PM   #322
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Legendary Airstream Quality.... Now I know why we paid 2x what SOB would have cost us.

Unbelievable- we've only owned this for 6 months and the previous owner kept it in covered storage. Wonder how long this has been festering under the floor?
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Old 02-11-2014, 10:22 PM   #323
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The fun continues.... most of the plywood was so decomposed, I was able to remove most if it without tools. I started with a putty knife to see how many layers were affected, but after I broke through, I was able to pull most of it up by hand
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Old 02-11-2014, 10:28 PM   #324
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The fun continues.... most of the plywood was so decomposed, I was able to remove most if it without tools. I started with a putty knife to see how many layers were affected, but after I broke through, I was able to pull most of it up by hand
Sorry man!
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Old 02-11-2014, 10:41 PM   #325
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Well, here is where I ended up after a couple of hours- filled the trash can and decided to stop; since it's obvious I'm going to have to put in a replacement panel... I'll square the cut up to about 16" x 64" the rear will be flush with the back wall.
Off to the lumberyard tomorrow for some 5/8" plywood and West Marine for some marine grade epoxy... will get the patch cut and fitted, then pull it up, epoxy the cut edges and wait a few days for the remaining plywood and insulation to dry out before screwing the new plywood down.- supposed to be almost 90 here in AZ by the end of the week. Will tackle pulling the rear molding so I can spend all weekend on what would have been a 5-minute caulking job at Jackson Center in 2007.

I was thinking about fiberglassing over the patch ( ~1 ounce mat embedded in resin all the way across the back section) after the new plywood is installed- thoughts?
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Old 02-11-2014, 10:49 PM   #326
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[QUOTE="DoubleNickel;1414681"

I was thinking about fiberglassing over the patch ( ~1 ounce mat embedded in resin all the way across the back section) after the new plywood is installed- thoughts?[/QUOTE]

Well,

The water came in below the top of the floor into the back face of the wood. Then the reflectix below held the water in. So, if you wrap the fiberglass around the end and then cut the reflectix out below to drain any water that gets in then it might save you. The issue is whether you can slide the new piece between the shell and frame wrapped in fiberglass.

Brad
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Old 02-11-2014, 10:50 PM   #327
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One last picture- as others have mentioned, when I pulled the vinyl I found ample evidence of what "Built with Pride" means to the folks in Jackson Center, Ohio-aluminum shavings and sawdust everywhere. No wonder the rear floor joint leaked, they couldn't even run a broom, let alone a caulking gun.
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Old 02-11-2014, 11:21 PM   #328
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Well,

The water came in below the top of the floor into the back face of the wood. Then the reflectix below held the water in. So, if you wrap the fiberglass around the end and then cut the reflectix out below to drain any water that gets in then it might save you. The issue is whether you can slide the new piece between the shell and frame wrapped in fiberglass.

Brad
I was thinking more about strengthening/stiffening the floor since it will have additional seams due to the patch... I'll reinforce the seams with a fiberglassed wood batten below, but it won't be as strong as an uninterrupted sheet of plywood. (Luckily, the longitudinal seams will be under the furniture where they won't see foot traffic.)
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Old 02-12-2014, 12:19 AM   #329
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I have found the solution to water leaks--I camp now (full timer for 14 years) as much of the time as possible in the desert. Thankfully, I discovered, quite by accident, my bumper leak before it had progressed to floor rot. Yep, Airstream quality is legendary, except to those who own them.
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Old 02-12-2014, 05:34 AM   #330
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Air Stream should be ashamed of their quality of work and even more for what they charge for it . For another couple of dollars worth of calking and wood preservative all of this could have been prevented
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Old 02-12-2014, 08:48 AM   #331
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I have come to the conclusion on mine that condensation may have been the culprit since the problem was dead center on floor toward the front window. I removed about 60 inches by 70 inches and ensured that the main beams are available to secure each piece. The moisture seemed to be trapped between the aluminum and the insulation and there were actually drops of water on the aluminum underpanel when I peeled the silver insulation back. This over the spare tire well. No sign of actual leaks and the trailer is kept under a shelter. I'm going with spar varnish to seal both sides, all edges, and caulking between the joined edges. It's cleaner now then when it left the factory underneath. I hope someone at Airstream monitors these forums so that the knuckleheads who slap these together get fired.
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Old 02-12-2014, 08:53 AM   #332
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Floor splice to repair damaged floor section

Maybe this will help someone someday.

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Old 02-12-2014, 09:27 AM   #333
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Forget patching that. You need to replace that whole section of floor and you need to remove the inner skins to gain access to the bolts that go through the floor. The new floor needs to go under the wall and be bolted through to the frame.

Perry


Quote:
Originally Posted by DoubleNickel View Post
Well, here is where I ended up after a couple of hours- filled the trash can and decided to stop; since it's obvious I'm going to have to put in a replacement panel... I'll square the cut up to about 16" x 64" the rear will be flush with the back wall.
Off to the lumberyard tomorrow for some 5/8" plywood and West Marine for some marine grade epoxy... will get the patch cut and fitted, then pull it up, epoxy the cut edges and wait a few days for the remaining plywood and insulation to dry out before screwing the new plywood down.- supposed to be almost 90 here in AZ by the end of the week. Will tackle pulling the rear molding so I can spend all weekend on what would have been a 5-minute caulking job at Jackson Center in 2007.

I was thinking about fiberglassing over the patch ( ~1 ounce mat embedded in resin all the way across the back section) after the new plywood is installed- thoughts?
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Old 02-12-2014, 11:04 AM   #334
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I'm a new Airstreamer, haven't even picked up our new-to-us unit yet. Waiting for the weather to warm up a little ...

I've got to tell you, these threads scare the heck out of me. DoubleNickel, I hope the repairs to smoothly.

In reviewing this thread, a significant number of 2007s appear to have been affected by the omission of caulk under that rear moulding. I understand that the problem was potentially corrected by the addition of a rubber edge piece in 2012.

Can any owners confirm whether the absence of caulk at the rear continued through the 2008-2011 model years?
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Old 02-12-2014, 06:17 PM   #335
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We figure that if we keep a close eye using the sonin we can catch anything before the would be catastrophe
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Old 02-12-2014, 06:56 PM   #336
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TinTin View Post
I'm a new Airstreamer, haven't even picked up our new-to-us unit yet. Waiting for the weather to warm up a little ...

I've got to tell you, these threads scare the heck out of me. DoubleNickel, I hope the repairs to smoothly.

In reviewing this thread, a significant number of 2007s appear to have been affected by the omission of caulk under that rear moulding. I understand that the problem was potentially corrected by the addition of a rubber edge piece in 2012.

Can any owners confirm whether the absence of caulk at the rear continued through the 2008-2011 model years?
I can confirm there was none in 2008. The real issue is that once the water is in, it can't drain / evaporate out and is held from below by reflectix insulation and above by the vinyl flooring.
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Old 02-12-2014, 10:24 PM   #337
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What a difference a day makes...

I cut the rotted plywood out today and got a patch fitted. Learned quite a bit , and actually caught a break....

1. Did some exploratory surgery to ensure I ended up with solid wood and found that I could cut the patch to ~16" x 65" and have it land on the frame members at the back and both ends. Will have to add two pieces of backing at the front seam, but will be able to screw three sides to steel.

2. After figuring out the size, I dropped the patch panel in on center and scribed it across the back. The curves on the end were so slight that I was able to cut them with my 5-1/2" cordless circular saw. The back cut is angled at 15 degrees, sides and front are 90 degrees.

3. I found it was easier to cut the patch and then trace it on the floor rather than trying to cut a patch to fit an existing hole.

4. Used an oscillating multi-tool to make the cut across the back at floor level, which is angled outward at 15 degrees to match the rear wall. I put a layer of duct tape around the base of the wall to minimize scuffing when I made the cut, which worked well. I was worried about the plywood under the wall, but got really lucky- when I trimmed it back, it was still solid- most of it was actually dry... The oscillating multi tool was on sale at Harbor Freight for $14.99; a 1-3/8 plunge-cutting blade was $6.99.. it made a difficult cut almost too easy, it took less than ten minutes to make the angled/curved cut across the back with the multi-tool, about the same time it took to do the straight cuts with the circular saw.

5. I set the depth of cut on the circular saw to just a hair less than the thickness of the plywood; jammed a few shims between the plywood and the frame to raise it slightly, and was able to cut the plywood without cutting through the reflectix. (well, except for a couple of small nicks...)

6. I found an old cardboard tube that a rug was rolled up on and we used it to roll the vinyl up to prevent damage. The back side cleaned up pretty well with bleach, detergent, and elbow grease.

7. Even though we cut out the wet and damaged plywood, we decided to wait a few days for all the newly exposed wood to dry thoroughly. So we pulled the fitted patch back out, rolled up the vinyl, used a shop vac to clean up all the construction debris (NOTE to Jackson Center- it only took a few minutes...)

8. Will tackle the leak(s) while everything dries thoroughly before buttoning it all back up.


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Old 02-12-2014, 11:44 PM   #338
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DoubleNickel View Post
What a difference a day makes...

I cut the rotted plywood out today and got a patch fitted. Learned quite a bit , and actually caught a break....

....


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So sorry to read of your situation. We could have had the same story but caught it while the wood was still only soaking wet & not yet rotten.

I know that the thought of making the job bigger must be awful, but may I suggest that you pull off the belly pan sheathing & get rid of the reflectix insulation. It only traps any water underneath the plywood and makes the risk of rot significantly worse.

See this account of my own experience:
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f456...-106406-2.html

I think that rigid foam insulation with a slight air gap will allow the wood to breathe & has better R-values.

Good luck with your restoration.

-evan
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Old 02-13-2014, 12:33 AM   #339
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So sorry to read of your situation. We could have had the same story but caught it while the wood was still only soaking wet & not yet rotten.

I know that the thought of making the job bigger must be awful, but may I suggest that you pull off the belly pan sheathing & get rid of the reflectix insulation. It only traps any water underneath the plywood and makes the risk of rot significantly worse.

See this account of my own experience:
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f456...-106406-2.html

I think that rigid foam insulation with a slight air gap will allow the wood to breathe & has better R-values.

Good luck with your restoration.

-evan
Thanks for the suggestion, agree with the need for an air gap. I'm planning to insert a couple of closed cell foam rods (aka foam pipe insulation) between the reflectix and the plywood in the open bays between the frame members. It's wide open now and the reflectix will stretch enough to get them in. Should create a nice air gap in between the plywood and insulation without having to remove the belly pan or replace the reflectix with foamboard. I also plan to coat the edges (new and old)and bottom of the plywood with fiberglass resin before installation and then fiberglass over the patch and existing floor for about 24" when everything is screwed back down tight.

Also will glass in two rounded dimples ~ 6" Diameter x ~2" high on the bottom of the patch panel (roughly centered in the open bays between the frame members), to deflect the reflectix down a bit- I pushed down with my hand when I was cleaning it up and was able to create a nice little "sump" that should collect any water that gets past the new caulking in the future. That's where I'll put the weep holes through the insulation...or maybe an actual drain tube.

Maybe it's a bit of belt and suspenders, but I don't want to have to replace the floor again if or when water finds one of the hundred pathways to the inside. I'd rather take this opportunity to create a pathway for it to find it's way back out easier than it made it's way in.
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Old 02-13-2014, 04:25 PM   #340
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Forget patching that. You need to replace that whole section of floor and you need to remove the inner skins to gain access to the bolts that go through the floor. The new floor needs to go under the wall and be bolted through to the frame.

Perry

If the existing plywood was continuous, maybe, but it wasn't. It looks like the rot started through capillary action at the plywood joint where AS added the little 6-8" wide section of plywood at the very back- it was pinned together with little corrugated fasteners, which provided little or no structural strength; they probably just made assembly easier by keeping everything aligned until they could get a few screws in when they dropped the floor on the frame.

The plywood under the wall turned out to be OK; the patch actually lands on the rear frame by about an inch and a quarter and will get screwed down with about a dozen #10 or #12 TEKS screws. The wall is still bolted to the frame, through a narrow strip of plywood, just like it came out of the factory.
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