January 22, 2017 at 11:09 am #467Diving DuckParticipant
One of the problems with placement of the mounting hole is that the captive bolt and nyloc nut prevent you from getting any kind of alignment tool in there plumb. My solution was to mark the positions of the the brackets and temporarily remove them. Then I was able to realign the brackets up against the shell with the bolts and nuts out of the way. I used a 3/8″ Forstner bit to mark the center of the hole. I then moved the bracket out of the way and drilled a 1/16″ hole all the way through. Following this, the 1/2″ “fill” hole can be drilled, partway from the bottom and finishing from the top. (In my case, I drilled a 5/8″ hole instead, for added assurance that I would not hit any raw wood when drilling the final 3/8″ hole.) When it comes time to drill the 3/8″ hole, Forstner bits are very helpful for finding the center of the thickened epoxy plug.
A second problem is that it is fairly difficult to get the riser and rubber vibration dampener aligned with the bracket and camper shell holes, especially if it is a tight fit and you don’t have a helper. My solution was to apply marine grade silicone sealant between the riser and vibration dampener the day before, while using a 3/8″ bolt to make sure the holes are aligned, and using some pressure on the dampener to mold the sealant nice and flat. In my case, since I was working alone, I also applied sealant to the top of the dampener to hold it and the riser in place (with the bracket attached loosely below) while I climbed up and dropped the bolt in place. Here is a copy of the drawing from the manual with my scribblings added:January 22, 2017 at 11:35 am #468derek0Participant
Thanks! Removing the mounting brackets and using them as a guide increases the accuracy of locating the holes AND means you don’t have to realign the trailer for mounting later. Now I can move this task to the final stage of assembly, after I have the finish on the camper. Great tips for those of us with an unenthusiastic “helper.”January 30, 2017 at 2:15 am #505EricParticipant
Diving Duck’s solution is brilliant, the best yet. I suffered with alignment issues ( out of plum final holes, which drilling 1/2 way through from the top would have prevented), moving the teardrop forward and backwards over the trailer, then epoxy coating those holes that I felt were too near or touching the wood. 5/8″ for the fill holes would have prevented this even with the misalignment. I did 5/8″ holes for my storage box – much better. I put silicone around the upper 3/4″ of the bolts before inserting them in the camper floor.The weight of the camper on the neoprene washers should keep the moisture out from the underside with or without silicone. I suspended my teardrop on styrofoam blocks 1/4″ above the final resting position to get the neoprene washers and risers lined up with the bolts unassisted.
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