Thursday, September 18, 2008

Dometic Repair

I started stripping the interior of the Safari to remove the floor tiles. I had found a few soft spots that I wanted to repair. After removing the Dometic Refer and finding the out side temperature hitting 100 and above, I decided to work on the Refer in the shop until it cooled off a little outside. There were cracks in the corners of the door as if there were heavy items carried there while the trailer went down the road. Since the axle was shot, it beat the door plastic so hard it cracked.

I used a Dremel tool to grind out the cracks. I ground them to a Vee shape.

Now came the hard part, trying to find something to stick to the plastic. After trying Bondo, Bondo with fiberglass and a plastic car bumper repair kit I was ready to give up. I place a call for help on the Airstream Forum. Don East (NorCal Bambi) came to the rescue. He said to use Marine-Tex from West Marine. This stuff worked great. I filled the cracks and sanded smooth.
I then flipped the door over and applied fiberglass mat and resin to the backside for more reinforcement

Since I had removed the old insulation to apply the fiberglass, I used the spray can expanding foam on the back.

Then, using my electric carving knife, I trimmed it flush.

If you attempt this, use the low expanding foam. The regular that I used expanded so much it warped the door!

It took a fair amount of work to repair that.

After that I primed it with Krylon Primer for plastic and painted it as close as I could to the original color.

Next step was to clean and adjust the burner and test it. It works great on gas and electric. I removed the wood panel from the door and sanded it but, it was too far gone. I was able to reverse the panel, sand, stain and varnish it.



Frank Yensan said...

John very cool repair. This will surely help someone needing to do this same thing and not knowing how to proceed. Keep it up. look forward to watching your progress.

utee94 said...

This looks fantastic, and pretty much brand new. Very nice work.

You're clearly doing things the right way, which is often the hard way in the near future, but always pays off long term.

Keep it up!