I’m going to order the metal skin for my project sometime over the next week. I have no metal working experience and a mistake cutting the skin could be costly. To those of you that have installed new skin, what is the best way to cut the metal? Should it be done in place on the trailer? On the ground? What tools work best for cutting the metal cleanly and accurately? I’m especially concerned about the radiuses on the side dinette windows.
TIA for your insight.
Last Edit: Mar 30, 2013 13:51:52 GMT -5 by smccusk
Post by schweetcruisers on Mar 30, 2013 10:23:20 GMT -5
I bought a pneumatic shear and ended up returning it cause it damaged the metal when it would cut. The best way I found to cut it was a jigsaw with a good metal blade, and a pair of hand snips and hand shears. I did my whole trailer this way, I even looked at using a router but a good bit was almost $200.00.
Take your time, wear gloves, ear and eye protection, and a mask, aluminum dust is not really that great to breath!
I would use your old skins as templates, or you could do as I did, I put a panel up traced the roof line and window openings and then took it down and cut it on bench.
I have videos on my website if you are interested. I use Hand Shears and a Razor Knife. You'll be surprised what you can do with a razor knife... Keep in mind I am folding the metal over the sides on this one and running j rail all the way front to rear.
You can skip to Part 9... Watch the rear metal instalation before watching the front metal...
If you use the shears I show in my video which are available at Home Depot and MADE In the good old USA by the way. After your first attempt at cutting you will see how easy it is. Those shears are fantastic and cost about $30 with replacable blades.
God grant me the strength to restore the trailers I can,
The courage to strip the parts from the trailers I can't,
And the wisdom to know the difference.