Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Cab Over outer surface is near complete (1/30/09)

Rushing to get this part of the project completed before we fly back to Guatemala. The weather has been half with us, half against and I have been down with a bad cold, but making progress. The "Filon" original fiberglass panels had been cleaned (scraped and sanded) and reapplied with Original Contact Cement (2 coats). I have used contact cement for years when working with formica and decided not to use what some suggest is the proprietary glue sold in RV stores. Tired of markups, I shop Home Depot.Front window area framed and shimmed out, awaiting outer panel to cover it side to side.

All wood construction was done with pine or fir as OEM's used, but screwed, and glued everything. Heavy Duty Liquid Nails on all wood on all surfaces that contacted something. All luan was likewise screwed and glued.

The steel rails that frame the perimeter of the forward right and left side of the cab over section was ground down to bare metal, conditioned with Ospho (phosphoric acid), painted with Rustoleum paint, the the new wood was screwed in with fine thread, self tapping 1.4" Flat Head machine screws. The wood and rails were also coated with 3M 5200, a severely strong adhesive sealant.Plywood used under bed area was epoxy resined and fiber glassed together prior to original filon skin being re-applied.

The 3/4" Plywood used for the bed section or base of the cab over, was sealed in advance of installation, with West System Epoxy resin and all edges were taped with cloth and epoxy. The 2 pieces used in this base was also fiber glassed together on the inside of the cab and the front end was glassed to the forward section. Nothing here is coming loose in the future and Nothing is going to leak!Filon skin re-applied to plywood base with contact cement. Then edges were secured with copper coated 5/8" brads and covered with Eternabond tape (1"). Later, I will cover the Eternabond with a secured molding.

The front window area was framed in, after tossing the old window into the garbage. The window area was overlapped with one full piece of 1/4" finished ply, that had also been double coated/sealed with West System Epoxy resin. The side that would face out to weather, was also covered with a layer of 8 oz. fiberglass cloth and re coated with several coats of resin to smoothing the surface, then primed with a fiberglass one part primer, by Interlux. This was sanded in preparation of a final painting.Front Panel covers the full width of Motor Home and will butt up to 'yet to be built' side moldings when complete.

The outer wood panel was then attached with 3M 42oo adhesive sealant and brads. This is a fast setting material (24 hours vs. 7 days for 5200) both are extremely strong and water proof. I also sealed the edges of this added 1/4" panel with the 3m product. Eternabond tape covers edges. An excellent sealing tape, it virtually guarantees a dry interior. Will be covered later with a custom molding overlapping each side by 1.5".

The outer corners, that originally had a cheap aluminum molding that marginally did its job, actually failing, causing leaks are being finished in a different manner. I threw the aluminum away and will not use this garbage for replacement, as it only covers the side of the motor homes surface with maximum 7/16 ths of coverage and often less. I will make a custom fiberglass molding when I return from my boat trip. This molding will extend 1.5" on the front AND the side of the MH. In advance and until, I used a 2" strip of Eternabond tape to cover the edge. When the new molding goes on, it will cover this Eternabond completely and will be bedded in another sealant.
Taken at noon, this shot does not show the paint job I did this afternoon. One coat so far of Oyster White, Awlgrip linear polyurethane paint, applied in "roll and tip" fashion. 2nd coat tomorrow, then down with the scaffold till spring.
In the spring, I will also, start the re roofing with Dicor material and new curved roof beams.


Charles said...

I am doing the exact same repair as you. But working on an 82 Midas.

The Cab over is rotted in the same fashion. But the bunk area, is glued to tin.

I am trying to decide if I should try and save the tin by cutting the 3/4 into sections with a circular saw, then pealing the small sections from the tin.

Or just buy new tin.

Ron Sheridan said...

Hello Charles, On my '91 Tioga, the outer surface is 'filon' I believe...a thin fiberglass material that can be shipped in a roll and applied with contact type of glue.
I don't know what Midas used for glue, but metal will bend and probably take on permanant damage from bending, but you can work around that. This is of course if you are going for a reliable outer surface(functional) and not thinking of a show finish!
I would deal with the structural stuff first. You 'have to' get that done....the skin or cosmetic stuff can be worked out later. Save what you can, but like surgery, you've got to 'cut' then deal with the scar issue somehow later. You can use a 'filon' type material later-available from RV shops, or buy Aluminum that comes in a roll and used in shops that rework the 18 wheeler rigs. etc. Some research online will get you there.

Rob J. and the Family said...

I am packing up to leave on a trip from Atlanta to Washington DC - just discovered a major problem with my overcab - not as bad as yours, but it's gonna need some work. My unit is a Jayco Designer 3230K - 2000MY. Really upset but not going to let it ruin vacation. I'll read your pose in depth when I get back in a week. Thanks for posting such detail pictures.

Judy Fore said...

Thanks so much for sharing this. I just bought a 1989 Tioga that appears to be in great condition except for the damage to the over hang. Getting rid of that troublesome window is a great idea! By the way, I only paid $1500 for this 24 foot camper so even with having to redo the overhang, I got a good deal!

Ron Sheridan said...

Judy and all, The window seems to have been a Major problem on most all of these early model Cab-Over Class C's. Look at similar models built today and you will no longer see a window installed in the front. As a matter of fact, you will rarely see the little side windows in that Cab-Over! So, In any repair, I' suggest doing away with the forward window, make sure the side windows are well sealed(remove and rebed with a good sealant) Check and at least rebed those Upper Amber Clearance Lights, and lastly, do some investigative work or modification on the molding around the front corners of Front to Side area.
Yup! If you are handy, these rigs can have their lives extended well into the future and because of that...if not fixed, can be purchased at a very reasonable price.
Sooner or later, all of these models will need this kind of work.

Gertjan said...

Hi, I am in the middle of repairing my cab over. My challenge at the moment is finding some 1/4 inch plywood or luon that is wider then 8ft, just need a bit more as a backing for the filon. Any advice?

many thanks