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Old 08-26-2005, 02:42 PM   #1
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Need Help!!! Fiberglass bath

We have a 1966 Caravel with a fiberglass bathroom in the rear - floor, walls, ceilings, sink and toilet. It has a few previous repairs that look bad and has a lot of grazing and a couple of good cracks (I quess those are really bad cracks). I called a fiberglass repair person who felt some of it could not be repaired - mainly the sink. He also thought that it would cost too much to fix the rest (he has not informed me how much is too much).

Have any of you had similar problems and how did you solve it?

Thanks,

Pat
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Old 08-26-2005, 03:29 PM   #2
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obsolete bath

Well, there's good news and there's bad news.
Bad news:
The molded fiberglass tub/shower/lavatory unit in those 60's model trailers is obsolete and no longer available anywhere.
Options under this category:
(1) Every once in a blue moon you may see where someone who has gutted a trailer of your variety advertises on the various sites selling its interior parts. Snap them up quickly.
(2) Continue calling high quality craftsmen skilled at fiberglass repair until you find someone confident that they can do the job and pay them.
Good news:
Not only is it possible, but very do-able to fabricate either an aluminum or stainless unit in the same configuration as the original. Im in the process of doing one myself. You need to find someone highly skilled in welding stainless and/or aluminum (both are difficult). Floor plans are readily available to go by...best thing is to find someone with the same trailer that will generously allow you to make cardboard cut-out templates of their bath unit. Once you have pieces cut, material and labor shouldn't be more than $1500 or so. Someone skilled enough with these materials will be able to weld and bend everything just so and when finished it looks quite handsome indeed. Also has a very high cool quotient as well.
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Old 08-26-2005, 03:38 PM   #3
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skeeter,
I'm going throught the same thing now. I have several cracks in the rear bath end cap. I'm considering patching with Fiberglass, sand to finish and recoating with something. I've heard everything from Latex paint to aluminim flashing from Home Depot. On another thread others suggested wood filler for smaller cracks, but I'll try Bondo. I ripped out everything else in the back with exception to this, sorry mine wont fit yours and is already at the land fill.

Hope this has some merit.
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Old 08-26-2005, 04:25 PM   #4
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I work with fiberglass sometimes. The best thing that fiberglass is very easy and most of the time can be fixed. I never seen what the bath looked like in those years AS , but I did own SOB Mh and I had a fiberglass bath as well with no problems and it looked like it was a gelcoat finish. Here is a web site for all your glass needs. http://www.shopmaninc.com Also you can add color with this stuff http://www.shopmaninc.com/pigments.html . What I would do first is small cracks you can fill is a fiberglass based Bondo ( I think is is called Dura Glass?) and if you need to beef it up work it on the back side . I is so hard to give all the answer at once , so if you need to reply back. Good luck ! Jim
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Old 08-26-2005, 05:13 PM   #5
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Fiberglasss components

All the fiberglass parts that Airstream "ever" made, can easily be repaired and refinished.

All it is, is plain ordinary gel coat and fiberglass.

For someone to say it cannot be repaired is without any merit.

Most of the time, when you see a crack, that crack is in the gel coat only, not in the fiberglass.

Test it with some water to prove the point.

We have repaired tubs, sink tops at the like, even with holes punched in them, along with missing a section of that part.

It does take time and patience. Refinishing them with gel coat is OK, but most of the time, we use automotive type paints.

Andy
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Old 08-26-2005, 05:46 PM   #6
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Do It Yourself?

There's a member on the Forum with the handle Pizzachop. Take a look at his pictures and search on his posts. He has a bunch of information. Start by looking at this and then searching his other threads/posts. http://www.airforums.com/forum...ad.php?t=11197

Good luck.
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Old 08-29-2005, 03:42 PM   #7
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We'll fix it - Thanks everyone
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Old 08-29-2005, 04:41 PM   #8
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I had the same problem with my 67 Caravel. I ended up using the vertical pieces as templates to make new from Aluminum and the shower pan and sink I repaired with West System epoxy and fiberglass cloth then shot everything with Rustoleum Industrial two part epoxy paint in the color of our choice. The paint has held up great with no scratches or scuffs and the repairs have held up to use.
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Old 08-29-2005, 08:04 PM   #9
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Can't all fiberglass be repaired?

I must admit, I had the same thought as Andy when I read the fiberglass repair man's reponse. I mean, it's not like you can go down to Lowe's and pick up a new vanity or shower for your unit.

I found that a $10 Bondo repair kit will go a long way in repairing old bathroom stuff. I also used it to repair a crack in the rear endcap on the '73 Sovereign. On the end cap, I had to remove it (kind of difficult to handle as it's a bit floppy once it's removed) and repair it from the backside. I scuffed it up good and applied to layers of glass and resin to it and it seemed to hold. I filled in the crack on the front side with 2 part marine epoxy (shown in picture above) and then sanded it smooth before painting it.

As a pizza maker, I didn't have any experience in fiberglass, so I just read the instructions. Piece of cake! (or pizza) It is important to prep the area (clean and scuffed) so that the resin will adhere to it. It cures fast (60-90 minutes) and can be sanded. Once you paint it (2-part epoxy or whatever), no one will ever know but you, provided you feather the edges.

Check out my new countertop in the Overlander! (I've been working like a madman to get ready for a 6 day trip to D.C./Gettysburg, and the countertop/stove was my goal!)
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Old 09-01-2005, 04:36 PM   #10
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And - How do I get it out of there?

Well it looks like to bottom portion of this fiberglass wet bath has to come out. Can anyone give some idea how to go about this project?
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Old 09-01-2005, 08:49 PM   #11
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Been there...

Quote:
Originally Posted by skeeterville
Well it looks like to bottom portion of this fiberglass wet bath has to come out. Can anyone give some idea how to go about this project?
Hi Pat, I gutted my whole interior with the intent of refinishing everything including the bathroom. I don't have cracks in mine but it is faded and stained and needs to be refinished. It is possible to remove just your bathroom but it makes the job a whole lot easier if you remove more than just the bath fixtures. I don't know how you'd get the tub out without removing the partition wall (in my Safari there were rivets that were inacessable to drill out with the wall in place). Once you start disassembling things it should become pretty logical about what needs to come out next. I know there's a thread somewhere in the archives specific to bath removal try a search for it. Good luck, take good notes and plenty of pictures as it comes out and don't discard anything until it's back together and you're satisfyed with the job. Even then there may be people interested in purchasing anything you don't want to keep.

Good luck, Diane
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Old 09-18-2005, 10:11 AM   #12
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I have removed my tub/sink/toilet cover fiberglass unit in my 66 Safari to do floor repairs. While it was removed, my intent was to repair and repaint it outside of the trailer, but it won't fit out the door. It is currently resting on the front Gaucho. Has anyone had good results painting it in place, inside the trailer? Can the two-part epoxies be brushed on, or are the brush strokes evident?
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Old 09-18-2005, 01:04 PM   #13
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BurnzeeEvery Airstream trailer, ever built, would allow all of the interior components to go throught the entrance door.That's how they built all the trailers.Perhaps you have two pieces that can be separated.Andy
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Old 09-18-2005, 03:04 PM   #14
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Burnzee,

Call Ron, at South Jersey RV...856-697-9600...he'll be more than happy to talk you through taking your bathroom apart....he's really knowledgeable and friendly.

Frederic
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Old 09-18-2005, 04:59 PM   #15
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Good info folks- this stuff is easy although messy to repair, but can be done.
Now this is what the Forum thing is all about.
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Old 09-21-2005, 03:21 PM   #16
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Thanks guys. I finally had a chance check back in as my home computer is down. I'll check again to verify if if will break down further.
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Old 09-22-2005, 05:34 PM   #17
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Shower in my argosy

I have several cracks in my shower and would like to know what to do about it. Is it made from fibreglass or from plastic? I saw a beautiful blue and white shower while crusing around. When I get my camera, I will post some pics of my situation. I love the comments here. I live in Tulsa, OK and would like to have some recommendations for AS service in this area.
thanks y'all
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Old 09-22-2005, 05:51 PM   #18
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bpk1300

1976 Airstream shower pans are plastic and were vacuum formed.

Because of that process, there was a tendancy to have thin material in the corners.

The shower pan can be removed and sometimes be repaired without much trouble. However, building up the thickness of the plastic material in the corners can be a long term tedious job.

Depending on how it's done, fiberglass patches can be installed from the back side of the shower pan, but not very easily if the plastic corners have become brittle.

Then the remaining problem is how to smooth out the good side of the pan and make it look ok. Next problem is how to refinish the pan. It's usually done with automotive paints, that must be sprayed on, several times.

The same process is true for a plastic tub or the plastic counter tops in the bathrooms.

There is a fiberglass replacement for the shower pans used in the 70's.

Andy
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Old 09-22-2005, 06:41 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bpk1300
I have several cracks in my shower and would like to know what to do about it. Is it made from fibreglass or from plastic? I saw a beautiful blue and white shower while crusing around. When I get my camera, I will post some pics of my situation. I love the comments here. I live in Tulsa, OK and would like to have some recommendations for AS service in this area.
thanks y'all
Do you need a shower tub?
I have a shower tub, in excellent shape, you can have for the cost of shipping.
The pan is totally FREE to you.
I am all about inexpensive and FREE!
No sense in repairing yours or buying a new one, when you can have good one for FREE!
Let me know if you want it. I know it fits your Argosy!
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Old 09-22-2005, 06:58 PM   #20
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Lou,

Your altruism knows no bounds. You deserve mega Karma for your contributions to this board. God Bless your generosity.

Frederic
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