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goransons 07-17-2007 08:13 PM

bathroom floor/rear compartment
4 Attachment(s)
Well we found absolutely no water damage in the main living area of the trailer, but that totally changed when we got into the rear. The bathroom floor was in great shape, but when I started cleaning out the battery compartment I discovered that the area had seen its share of water and/or leaky batteries. (guessing the latter as the battery tray was rusted almost completely away) The plywood is pretty rotton inside the compartment, and probably 1" inside the bathroom back wall around the base of the sink and toilet area, but not the main walking surface. I have been reading the rear seperation section in detail, and noticed that when I jump up and down on the bumper there is some flex (about a 1/4 inch or less) between the frame rail and body, and by the pictures you can see some buckle around that area. I'd like to try to repair this section without tearing out the bathroom, as it is in really good shape and I'm not confident the old plastic will come out without cracking. I'm wondering if the wood rot repair would give the floor more integrity or if I can just cut out the rotted section inside the battery box (after taking out the water and drain lines for the time being) without tearing the fixtures out (maybe in two pieces) then attach the body to the frame rails like was mentioned with the 2" L channel. Please let me know your thoughts.

tchild 10-10-2007 06:23 PM

I've got a similar problem. What did you end up doing to yours?


goransons 10-10-2007 08:23 PM

not to much yet, though my plan is to shore things up for a few seasons while I get to bigger issues and eventually reconfigure tanks and replace the box. What I did/am finishing doing for the winter is:

Cut out the rusted angle iron and replacing with a piece of 4" aluminum extruded angle iron (so it won't rust). I'm also riveting in a piece of sheet metal patch and cutting out as much of the cancer on the sheet metal box as I can get to with dropping everything to keep the the structure in tact, and finally making sure the belly pan is also well secured so that the tank together is very solid in place. Then I'm sealing the joint between the box and belly pan there with the sikaflex 636 stuff. I'm drilling a couple holes in the belly pan close to that are where its lowest to let water that gets in find a safer way out.

Basically I'm doing an insurance policy of repairs to keep from having to retreive a broken tank from the driveway or highway or something after a big bump.

Hopefully this is the best way to deal with it, its all I could come up with, and appears to be prone to water collection.

Tom Bray 10-10-2007 08:48 PM

Have you dropped the belly pan in the back and had a good look up? My first inspection didn't look too bad but it got worse as I dug deeper. The "replacement of rear cross member" and the "Progress of ..." is what I am dealing with.

After I had everything apart, I noticed that the bolts holding the frame to the shell were very loose because the flooring had rotted away and the rear of the shell was starting to settle down onto the frame. If I hadn't taken the bathroom out, the only way to access these bolts is to remove sections of the outside skin.

Removing the bathroom went better than I would have guessed. Take your time and if you get frustrated, stop and take a break. Be careful when drilling out rivets so that the drill doesn't get away and put a reverse dent in the outside shell.

Our trailer was in what appeared to be really nice shape, even my mechanic said it was in excelent condition. I really hated taking it apart. Now that I am into it, I can see that it was the right way to do it.

drag'nwagon 10-10-2007 08:55 PM


You need to caulk up the gap between the bumper compartment and body before you get additional water damage to the floor at the floor channel in back. The water damage back there can lead to separation like issues

goransons 10-11-2007 03:38 PM

I did have a good look in the belly pan. I had to replace the P trap and drain pipe on the shower as the PO had let that freeze and break. There was already a probably 12 x 8 inch opening cut with a patch using screws below the trap. I was able to get in there with a mirror and flash light and see the majority of the structure. Very little rust of any kind, just some small discolored paint areas of the most minor surface rust. Nearly all of the frame inside the belly pan looked better than I'd hoped.

This weekend I'm going to finish the sheet metal work and seal around the tank area as well as around the trim there above the bumper to keep it dry for a few months. Its going to get two new axles, new appliances and the rest of the repair in that area after tax return time.

tchild 10-13-2007 06:16 AM

What is the best way to drop the belly pan? Do you have to remove the rub rails? Mine has the belly pan inboard of the frame support that contains the black tank.


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