Glassing inside doors and hatch, is there enough fiberglass?
Tagged: door hatch fiberglass
January 10, 2022 at 2:10 pm #4105
If I fiberglass the inside of the doors, and inside the galley hatch while the teardrop is still in the mold, will I run short of fiberglass to do the outside?
If I piece together fiberglass to do the bottom, will it compromise strength?
Any chance there will be enough left to do the galley flat, top and bottom?January 11, 2022 at 12:54 am #4106jbParticipant
Maybe I got unlucky but my kit was VERY short on fiberglass. I glassed the inside of the galley hatch and the doors only with scraps, not taking any extra glass (OK, maybe a foot) from the roll and I still needed to purchase ~16 extra feet of glass to be able to do the bottom.January 11, 2022 at 2:26 am #4107
JB, How did your doors and hatch fit? Do you think fiberglassing them early helped?January 11, 2022 at 7:59 am #4108DanielParticipant
JB, that is interesting, I had enough fiberglass cloth to glass the underside of my cargo box, and had a few pieces extra.
I did not glassed the inside of the doors, or galley hatch – big mistakeJanuary 11, 2022 at 9:37 am #4109madebymike60Participant
I can’t answer one of your original questions because I bought extra fiberglass but maybe this will help. Reading on the forum about other places to glass, I got 3 yards from Amazon early on so I wouldn’t run out, thinking I was going to also make my own galley module and glass it (which I never did).
I did glass the inside of the doors and part of the galley hatch and the galley flat. The galley flat was with ‘scrap’ pieces though. I also added a substantial stiffener to the galley hatch and installed the door stiffeners before cutting out the doors. (Some of this is in other posts.) Overall, I like how both the hatch and doors kept their shape and fit well after being cut out. It’s hard to tell if the glassing and/or stiffener made the difference but I wouldn’t do it differently.
The only issue with their fit seems to be the thickness of the foam, especially at the doors. They are held out a bit by the supplied foam and if it ever wears out, I’ll probably try a slightly thinner one.
Anyway, I have 4-5 feet of the supplied fiberglass left over and might not have run out (barely) but having the extra meant I didn’t have to worry about it, and I have a little for future repairs or projects (not that I want to work with epoxy any time soon).January 11, 2022 at 1:49 pm #4110jbParticipant
My doors fit pretty well I think. I don’t have anything to compare to except anecdotes here on the forum but I do think glassing inside and adding the door stiffener before cutting did help. I glassed inside the hatch as well but added my own supplemental stiffener as suggested here. I think the stiffener probably made a lot more difference than additional glass on the hatch. My hatch fits well towards the bottom with little upward flex where I think most people have problems but I have a leak at the top. It still twists a bit if you try but not really a concern with the even support of the struts and when it is cinched down and closed. I only recently “finished” and tested the camper body so I need to do some tweaks on the gasket on the hatch to prevent leaks.
@Daniel, I think I must have been shorted on the fiberglass. I think even if I didn’t glass the inside of the doors and hatch I would not have had enough to cover even half of the bottom.
January 11, 2022 at 7:20 pm #4114wayne3676Participant
- This reply was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by jb.
glass the inside of the doors and hatch even if you have to buy more fiberglass. I did the doors but to0 late for the hatch. I did have fiberglass left over.January 12, 2022 at 1:48 am #4117
Thank all of you for the good advice.
I bought 12 yards of 4 oz, (CLC only had odds and ends of 6 oz), to do the inside walls where the doors are and to do the inside of the hatch all with 2 coats. I will add the door stiffeners and make one for the hatch, before cutting them out.
I also plan to attach the hinges before cutting out the doors and hatch.
I think I will mark up the manual for these changes so I don’t miss doing them at the right time.January 22, 2022 at 11:09 am #4128
As for piecing together FG under the bottom, the bottom is about 3/4″ thick, One layer of FG isn’t adding much strength, especially since it’s supported by the trailer. Piecing FG together should be fine. I do think you want to ensure it overlaps the shell a bit to add strength to the joint between the bottom and shell.
I believe the FG is helping to protect the plywood from rock chips causing moisture intrusion into the wood by providing a substrate for more epoxy resin. But I could be wrong. I plan on adding a coat of pickup bed liner to the bottom of mine, because I think it wont weigh much, and can’t hurt. Not that moisture intrusion will be a serious issue in my lifetime!
BrianJanuary 22, 2022 at 4:50 pm #4129
It might be to late, but I wouldn’t FG the inside of the doors while it’s open and in the mold. Yeah, it’s open, and easy, but let me explain.
When you put the bottom on you will be tweaking the shell a bit. After you attach, fillet and FG the inside seam, the shell is in its final place and won’t be moving around. So I think that’s the position you want to keep. It may not be much, but having the FG around the door “fighting” any movement (stress) induced by attaching the bottom is counter to what you’re trying to accomplish. Keeping everything in its final position (alignment, whatever) should help in keeping the doors aligned and operating properly. I plan to fit the door edges and jambs to the shell when I get to that point, not trying to squeeze the shell against the other (flat) pieces and forcing things out of position.
Secondly, when you FG the sides you end up with quite a bit of (unavoidable) scrap FG. This can be utilized inside the doors (and jambs). I was surprised how much of the scrap material I used inside the doors – and remember, the window’s getting cut out, so you only need to go about an inch inside the window cut line!
This is what I did, but I haven’t gotten to the point of cutting out the doors. We’ll see what I think after I’ve done that.
BrianJanuary 22, 2022 at 11:15 pm #4131
I was planning to use bed liner on the bottom also.
I understand your point about the bottom changing the geometry of the side near the door. I will look at this when I get there and maybe install the bottom before fiberglassing the inside of the door.
I will report back what I end up doing and how it turns out.
MatthewJanuary 25, 2022 at 10:50 am #4141
When I looked at the insides of the doors I realized that I should have extended the FG past where the hinges attach on the wall – not that there needs to be that much strength there, but since you’re there already, why not?
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