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Old 12-29-2003, 08:34 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally posted by aviontt
what is the best way to apply it ?
It has been said before but bears repeating.

Use Parr Bond for small seams and joints 1/8th inch and under, Vulcem for every thing else. You can use the Vulcem for the small seams but you will need to transfer it to a disposable medical syringe to get that small of a point on it. Also the Parr Bond is thin enough that it will wick into the seam where the Vulcem will just fill it.

Sometimes it is an issue of gap size and the amount you want to seal. I have and use both. I am one of those owners that has a the least an unopened tube of Vulcem on hand as well and a tube of the Parr Bond going. If you don't use all of the Vulcem wrap it tightly, especially the tip and store it in the refer. It will last for months. Non of it is really expensive I get it all locally for 5-6 bucks a tube.
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Old 12-29-2003, 09:01 PM   #42
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Parr Bond colors

I mentioned in a post within the last year or so that Parr Bond in the 5 oz. tube comes in silver, white and clear. The RV company I stopped by only had white and clear on the shelf so I picked up a tube of clear. I will probably order the silver from Inland RV in the spring when I get back to polishing the trailer. I had planned on sealing the top seams with clear and the horizontal rub rails and windows with the silver.
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Old 12-29-2003, 09:22 PM   #43
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application tricks

I learned a neat trick for application of caulk from the installer of my custom fireplace surrounds. He carefully masks both sides of the joint to be caulked after carefully scirbing the surround to the wall. He opens the caulking tube by drilling a small hole about 1/8" in the end of the point rather than cutting at an angle. The combination of drilling a small exit hole in the tip and having the masking tape in place allows you to force a little sealant into the rather small crack and then smooth off the top. Then remove the masking tape before the caulk dries. The surrounds look like the grew from the wall.
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Old 01-04-2004, 03:19 PM   #44
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the other thing that helps when applying Vulkem is to use a bit of mineral spirits on a clean cloth, or your finger to smooth it out. Similiar to what you would do with bathroom caulking and water. I got a smooth smaller bead around windows and doors doing it that way.
The aluminum caulk still looks better to me, but it does not harden the way the Vulkem did.
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Old 01-04-2004, 08:15 PM   #45
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Alan,

I think the "soft" is a relative term. The sealant will skin over and this skin will crust. The sealant under this skin is still soft and pliable.
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Old 01-04-2004, 09:56 PM   #46
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Parr Bond

Hi all,

I've been unable to find Vulkem in my area (no one has heard of it at Home Depot), so I'll order it from Airstreamdreams or other online supplier. Does anyone know where to get Parr Bond--either at a store or online?

Thanks,
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Old 01-04-2004, 10:03 PM   #47
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Thumbs up Inland RV

We ordered some from Inland RV and it was shipped and here in less than a week. Andy is great to do business with. Wasn't able to find it here at the RV dealer.Getting another order ready for spring. Hello to another Canuck.. Annie
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Old 01-15-2004, 03:56 PM   #48
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Quote:
Originally posted by PeterH-79MH
carefully remove the side on the skin and place it 1/16" from the frame for a perfect fit.
I personally like Tremco's Dymonic Polyurethane Sealant. It sticks like thunder to aluminum and clearcoat and never dries hard. It is more liquid than vulkem and not so gritty. The color is a grey/aluminum. I bought it at the local glass company for $5.25 for a 11 oz tube. After forcing it into the seam using a caulk gun, I use a rag with paint thinner to smooth it out prior to removing the tape.
Peter did you use Dymonic FC or just plain Dymonic?
That is a great price, I have been quoted 11.00 a tube in Columbia.
Von will be in the Austin area in Feb or March.What is the name of the glass shop?
Did you get a trade discount or any such?
Did you also use Vulkem on the more isolated and larger areas?
Which Vulkem?
#116 is the most common and the cheapest.
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Old 01-16-2004, 06:27 AM   #49
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sue&Von


Peter did you use Dymonic FC or just plain Dymonic?
That is a great price, I have been quoted 11.00 a tube in Columbia.
Von will be in the Austin area in Feb or March.What is the name of the glass shop?
Did you get a trade discount or any such?
Did you also use Vulkem on the more isolated and larger areas?
Which Vulkem?
#116 is the most common and the cheapest.
Vulkem 616 is what I used on critical areas.
It would work on the windows as well, just a little harder to work with. I can report, that after two years my windows still look like I just did them yesterday.
But why not use the factory recommended Parbond?
The Glass company in Austin is called Binswanger Glass (512-454-7755). Last time I checked they didn't have the grey only black.
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Old 01-17-2004, 11:30 AM   #50
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I have a tube of Tremco Vulkem but can't find a # anywhere on the tube that would show if it is 616 or 611. the tube is gold in color and I found that the first tube I used was grittier than I liked. I don't want to order any of that stuff anymore. Any idea of which Vulkem it was?
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Old 01-17-2004, 12:36 PM   #51
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A good way to seal the exterior seams ,whether segment or side sheet seams, is by using an oil can(Plew's makes a great one for this) the small tip will let you apply various sealers neatly. Cool Seal makes a silver roof coating that works well in an oil can. Also Airstream sells some products that will work also(I believe they have some on their web site.
Caulking tubes with the wider tips should be used over the top of windows,around roof vents ,skylights , roof antenas etc.
Sika -Flex has a gray & white caulking that has a very smooth finish when applied and is used on the newer Airstream Products. Vulkem works well also.
Always inspect the sealer on your trailer for signs of alligatoring or cracking. Flexing of the Airstream shell can over time cause interior caulked seams to crack, this makes keeping the exterior seams sealed a MUST. This should be a yearly ritual at the very least. I like the idea of the tape for neatness as well as preventing scratches that may happen while sealing. Always check all gaskets and rubber seals , the UV rays will cause them to crack over time. A good vinyl protectant is also beneficial.
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Old 01-18-2004, 01:40 PM   #52
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Vulkem vs Silicon sealers

I just read a thread in which a member said that one should never use silicon sealer on aluminum - that it adheres tenaciously (I'll drink to that) and is not waterproof - or words to that effect. In working on my old Bubble I found a lot of silicon sealer and I have deep, abiding hatred for the stuff. Even the 3M silicon sealer remover does very little good on stuff that's years old.
However, the guy I've hired to help with the metal work loves the stuff and refers to my Vulkem as overpriced, aluminum colored silicon. I would really appreciate an explanation on what Vulkem actually is vs what the silicon really is so I can argue with the arrogant youngster. When I wasn't looking he really globbed the silicon on the underside of the frame to seal off the wheel wells. Arrrhhhhhh.
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Old 01-18-2004, 03:10 PM   #53
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silicone removal

Amtex-CCR is used to remove silicone caulk. amtexchemical.com
I haven't tried it yet, but they seem to have a product and reputation.
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Old 01-18-2004, 03:31 PM   #54
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If you do a search from the main page for "vulkem silicon" you will find several good threads about why not to use silicon sealant on aluminium. Vulkem or Parbond are the way to go.
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Old 01-18-2004, 07:32 PM   #55
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Re: Vulcem vs Silicon sealers

Quote:
Originally posted by smallfry
I would really appreciate an explanation on what Vulcem actually is vs what the silicon really is so I can argue with the arrogant youngster.
Jo Anne,

The Vulcem is a polyurethane based sealer. It has a slower total cure and it is DESIGNED for the sealing of metal to metal panels. It has a superior adhesion to the aluminum and will flex and move once set. The Silicone will not flex and move to the same extent and does not adhere to the aluminum since the product was NOT DESIGNED for the application. On a home that is sitting still (most of the time) it is a wonderful product, but not in most sealing situations on our RV's.

I have used Vulcem to seal more than just seams or when I have installed upgrades. It bonds to everything and cures to a pliable texture that truly seals. Yes it is more costly that silicone, but I am a firm believer in doing things once. BTW if the youngster is an employee tell him if he wants to do it his way it's free labor Your way is the only way you will pay for the work, even if you have to pay more for materials. This is a classic pay now or pay later issue to me.
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Old 01-18-2004, 07:55 PM   #56
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I am in the property management business and can tell you that carpenters always want to "repair" leaking aluminum gutters with silicone. The results are awful beyond description. There ARE silcone products which apparently are formulated for use on aluminum, but I have never seen any reason to try them. Vulkem is much easier to work with than silicone.

Vulkem is no more expensive than quality silicone. I just bought a tub of DAP's best bathroom caulk yesterday for $5.49 - which is four cents more than Airstream Dreams charges for Vulkem. My local materials supplier has it for a bit less than that.

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Old 01-18-2004, 08:28 PM   #57
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Thumbs down "Just say no to silicone"

FWIW I work for a national roofing and sheetmetal contractor. NONE! of our metal manufacturers reccomend or allow silicone caulking for any reason. Most of them specify a butyl type caulk or tape caulk for concealed joints and a polyurethane caulk (like Vulkem) for exposed joints. Some just use the polyurethane for everything. The main thing is to make sure the joint is CLEAN before putting any new caulk into or on it. So many people think more caulk is better, not usually. A little caulking in the correct place will go a lot further than a whole tube in the wrong place. BTW I am still scraping silicone off of the windows of my AS, that had been put on by a PO

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Old 01-18-2004, 10:06 PM   #58
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I would like to know more about the Amtex-CCR silicone remover. It sounds like a miracle product that would come in very handy. All the windows on my tradewind have been sealed with silicone by the PO. That might just be why I had to pull the shell and replace the entire floor. Has any one used this stuff or something like it? How exspensive is it?
Can it be bought at Lowes or Home Depot?
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Old 01-19-2004, 01:00 PM   #59
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caulking remover

This might help: techsupport@amtexchemical.com
1-800-56-amtex
610-436-4813
610-436-5173 FAX
I have their site in my favorites but I can't pull it up on Google. If you can't upload the site, this is the info. Gregg
BTW:
Amtex Chemical Co.
890 Fernhill Road
West Chester PA
19380
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Old 04-09-2004, 09:49 PM   #60
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THE FOLLOWING IS A DUPLICATE POST FROM THE "CHRONOLOGY OF PAINTING MY 25' EXCELLA (some extra information has been added here)

Sealing the lap seams! I finished the 1st sanding today and started sealing the lap seams which have voids. To prepare the seams, I'm cleaning them out using a dentist's pick which I bought at a flea market. To seal the seams, I'm using a product called "Alcoa Gutterseal" which I purchased from: http://www.airstreamdreams.com/ the claim is "Unlike Vulkem or Parbond, Gutterseal wicks into seams, making it a popular choice for sealing between panels". There's not much information written on the tube, but it does say "for best results apply to clean dry surfaces", and "Refer to Alcoa Material Safety Data Sheet no. 304. The tube the Alcoa Aluminum Pigmented Gutterseal comes in has a tip that is too big to get into tight seams, so I purchased some West System #807 syringes from Boaters World. They have a nice small tip. I transfer some Alcoa Gutterseal to a syringe, then inject the sealant into the lap joint. Cleanup is with M-E-K on paper towels. The syringe can inject into openings as narrow as about 1/32". As for the product wicking into seams, it does for me if it is humid and not too warm, otherwise, it dries quickly as the methyl ethyl ketone evaporates. I have to inject it but it is fairly easy. I'm not finished, but so far, it appears I'll be able to do most of my very small seams with a single tube of the Alcoa. It really acts like a great material and the finished surface has a very aluminum look.
The Gutterseal has a fluid consistency about like slightly stiff Elmers Glue, but it doesn't react like Elmers Glue as the VOC's evaporate quickly.

CAUTION (posted weeks after): The Alcoa Gutterseal is fine for sealing lap joints, but it ages to a "golden" color after a week or so, and it is difficult to achieve even results when covering the edge of a lap joint. Parrbond has proven to be a better material for covering the exposed edges of the lap joints.
Worrying that I might not be able to do it all with a single tube of Alcoa, I called a couple aluminum gutter installers to see if there was more Alcoa Gutterseal here in Corpus Christi. One installer said they use Ruscoe Permanent Seal instead of the Alcoa, and the Ruscoe is incredible but the only problem was they won't sell it to me. Searching Google using the term "Ruscoe" I found the product and its claims. Ruscoe claims it is an extremely durable "permanent" sealant for adhering aluminum to other materials. When at Home Depot, I went to the gutter department to see if they had a comparable material. Yes, it is called "Seamer Mate" and it is a tripolymer product which comes in small tubes as well as caulking tubes. Its claim: Permanent Bond Guaranteed, UV Resistant, Can Be Applied Under Water, and Semi-Self Leveling. It can be used on joints as large as 1/4" x 1/4", and it has a great aluminum look very much like the Alcoa Gutterseal.

My Airstream has a couple different sealants that were used at the factory. Sadly, the polyurethanes have not held up that well, but some of the sealants are still in great shape and they look just like the Seamer Mate Product. Permanent Bond Guaranteed and UV Resistant, now that is what I'm looking for. I'll use the Seamer Mate in all locations up to 3/16" wide. For larger seams, and there aren't many of those, I'll use the Vulkem 636 from Airstream Dreams.

For the record, I've been around sailboats and Rv's since the late 60's, and was a registered architect until I retired 3 years ago, and the only successful application of silicone sealants I've ever seen was on mitered glass corner windows in buildings. West Marine's website claims silicone adheres best to products which have "silica" in them. No silica in aluminum or fiberglass! Or bathroom polyester shower surrounds, etc., etc., etc.
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