The PO of my 62 Shasta put quite a few holes in our trailer skin. Three fairly large ones from installing a terrible tarp awning with pvc pipe railing and then siliconed it to fill the rest of the track. We managed to get this down, but now see that there are quite a few holes in the aluminum. Some holes were filled with silicone (holes from the wings) and others were just filled with screws. Do you have any suggestions how to fix these with a minimum of noticeability?
The Shasta has been painted over the original paint, and many of the seams covered in silicone. Also, most of the screws the hold the skin railing on were siliconed over. I assume it's bet to remove the silicone and repair the seams/railings appropriately. Do you know why the screws would have been covered over with silicone? Just caulk happy?
I believe the original paint is below the current paint job (just boring grey). You can see the line line under the paint where the old paint pattern was. Is it best to remove the paint before repainting, or painting over it? From what I can tell, the silver stripe is the bare aluminum of the skin. Is it easiest/best at this point to sand down the paint to get back the silver stripe or to paint silver to make the stripe?
Post by boandsusan on May 20, 2012 23:57:18 GMT -5
Do you have any pics? Its much easier for members to answer/help, if pictures are available. I have seen sizable holes, patched and then covered (disguised) with round vent covers, available at hardware stores like lowes.
Hmmm? Too big for a screws but kinda too small to disguise as a vent. Other than new skin, the only way is to disguise or cover with something like, a porch light or handle or something. Its really hard to suggest anything, not knowing where the holes are on the camper.
Most likely he covered all the screws with silicone because he didn't know where the leaks were and didn't want to take it apart to do full repairs. The same reason people cover roofs with tar.
1/4" holes? I'd probably use JB Weld. It'd be easy to fill little holes with it and sand it down before painting. You just sand the edges down to bare metal so the stuff sticks, make sure the edges of the holes poke into the wall, say by gently pushing them inward as you twist something cone-shaped like the tip of a plumb bob (really gently), and then apply the JBW, let it harden and sand it flush before painting. My dad fixed a hole in his old aluminum boat with a "metal bondo", like JB Weld or Liquid Steel, 40-odd years ago, and it still doesn't leak. JB Weld claims it works on aluminum, it's available at any hardware store.
One Airstream forum I visited recommended Z-Grip body filler by Evercoat, sold at boat supply places.
The best paint option is up to you and how much work you're willing to put in balanced against how pretty it has to be to satisfy you. The fact that you can see the old paint borders under the "new" paint shows you where the PO's priorities were. To get the absolute best finish, sand or strip it down to bare aluminum and start fresh with a primer. Don't let bare aluminum stand for more than a few hours uncovered though, it starts to oxidize immediately. Sand it right before priming. You could get a decent look by sanding the old paint smooth enough not to see the lines and painting over it. Preparation of the surface is always the single most important part of getting a good finish, so sanding with a finer grit as the last step before painting is important. Good luck!
Post by thezavalas on May 21, 2012 19:49:20 GMT -5
Cowcharge is right, jb weld works great for small holes. We had a bigger hole but it was in the center of a dent so we used bondo that worked well for the bigger blemish.
We just reprinted ours. Here's what we learned: oil based paint sucks. We bought a $200 sprayer and sprayed on the top color but the sprayer spit and sputtered and threw up white paint on the trailer. SO we rolled on the bottom half (under stripe) and it came out great. Stripe: strip paint off it and rub it with mothers alluminum polish. If you have scratches in the stripe use a high grit wet/dry sand paper, that works well. Use green frog tape to tape your stripe off before you paint. We are new to this and learned a lot from this board as well stalking a few Shasta blogs. Fun project but so far we're in what feels like a million dollars and not done yet!
Spitting paint sprayers can come from a bunch of different things. Some of them are: Paint not thin/slippery enough (spraying additives can help) Extra air getting into the system somewhere, maybe through a leaky siphon tube or low level in the cup that lets the paint slosh away from the tube Not enough air volume/pressure Worn out tip orifice (not on your new gun, hopefully), or wrong size orifice Clogging from not straining the paint or a dirty gun/filter/siphon intake screen Too small a compressor that can't maintain constant pressure With some sprayers, the paint backs away from the tip when it's off, and that rush of paint to the tip when you start up shoots a glob out, it's best to pull the trigger away from your work Old paint, especially if it got frozen I'm sure there are more reasons I don't know about too, different types have different issues
Post by boandsusan on Jun 10, 2012 22:11:03 GMT -5
JB weld works fantastic on aluminum. Our Compact is the 72 that had the solid rear window which was not welded at the corner joints. After restoring the window, I used a fine line of JB Weld in each of the 4 corner joints and it worked great. the only problem I can see with using it for small repairs in the skin` is that its pretty runny when first mixed. I`d wait for it to start setting up a little before applying, to avoid runs, and extra sanding. I think I`d use a small stone tip on a dremmel instead of sanding though.
Post by capnjonny on Sept 16, 2012 23:26:22 GMT -5
I have 2 holes I want to fill in on my 65 Compact. one is about 1/4 x 1/2" on the roof and the other is where the vent was. I want to eliminate the roof vent altogether. my plan is to put a piece of aluminum over the vent hole and pop rivet it into place with some sort of sealer between the two pieces of aluminum. Then I can use aluminum duct tape to tape over the rivets from inside . Anyone have a better Idea? Also, as I am doing a complete rebuild I thought I could tape over the roof seams from inside too.