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      Please note that the forum is still upgrading will be for most of the night I think,therefore you may find it slow at times, looking different etc etc. This will straighten out (he hopes) as the upgrade continues. One of the big changes is that usernames and display names will change.   At the moment you can have a username and display name for example you can have a username of joeblogsy and a display name of Joe Blogs.   After the upgrade we will only have usernames.   For some this won't make any difference at all but there are a fair few of you that have different display names., many of which I have changed for people for various reasons.   If, after the upgrade you notice your forum name isn't right please just send me a PM with your desired username.   You may also find you have been logged out, if this happens and you cannot remember your original forum details, please email me at mark@touringandtenting or open a support ticket by

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  1. Hi all,
     
    New to this site and new to caravanning. 
     
    We recently acquired an old 1993 Compass Reflection Merit 430/5 from my dad. The 'van had not been used for the last 2 years, and before that only really once a year for their annual holiday. IT was very mouldy and dirty inside and out but we cleaned it up and were looking forward to using it. I got a Caravan service engineer to come out and check it over last week and he did a thorough damp test. I knew it had a bit of damp in the OSF corner and the inside front panel was delaminating but wasnt prepared for what he found... Basically the floor was rotten around the edges and corners, pretty much all the way round the caravan. The service engineer condemned the van and told me not to tow it as it was likely the body would part ways with the chassis!
     
    Now, i am fairly handy with the tools being an ex car mechanic, the rest of the van is in fairly good nick and we dont have the money to buy another van we have decided to fix the floor in the one we have. 
     
    I have started having a look and with a few small stamps most of the OSR corner has fallen through so it really was bad! Suspect i will find the same all under the washroom, at least to the wheel arch and also around the front. also on the other side under the kitchen. The middle of the boards seems fine (although i have ordered a damp meter to check. I now have a few ways to go about this i think and would appreciate some advice/ experience...
     
    1st method is to replace just the damp bits. Take them back as far as i need to, try and bond new plywood and batons where i can and patch it up. This does appeal to me because its less work but worried about the strength of several repairs like this. The center of the boards are fine but obviously you loose strength when you add joins etc...
     
    2nd method is to replace the whole floor in sections from bottom up. This would involve stripping most of the interior of the 'van, ripping out whats in there in the sections of ply it was laid, and remaking it as i go, working my way from back to front and only needing to support the bodywork not attached to the floor at that time. Appeals as don't have to remove the whole body but think it might be a difficult way to work and again trying to ensure the strength might be an issue.
     
    3rd method i can see is to unscrew everything attached to the floor, raise the body slightly and remove the whole chassis and floor assembly from under the body, then build the new floor and a whole unit, attach it to the chassis, then roll the whole new assembly under the body and reattach it. The appeal of this is i can measure up and and build the floor before taking the van apart much more so i wont have to support the body for long, i dont have to strip the entire interior of the van, meaning it keeps some of its rigidity, I can build the floor as one whole piece meaning it will be as strong, if not stronger, than the original floor. The thing that worries me about this is being able to lift the body off the floor safely and making sure it doesnt collapse while supported in the air. 
     
    Something else to factor in is that i have a reasonable amount of space on the drive way but will still be slightly limited by this. I do have a garage and plenty of tools but limited covered space to work in and certainly the 'van will be in open air on the driveway during the repair. 
     
    I would really appreciate any insight, experience or opinions on best way to go about this... Will try and document as i go along to help others in the future :)
     
    Obviously something else i need to do it seal all the joints and ensure no more water gets in which i will do as part of this process.
     
    I have never attempted something of this scale but looking forwards to getting my teeth into it and having a van we can use for several years to come.
     
     



  2. Post on Damp meters in Workshop

    By PeteVeasey, posted
    Hi, can anyone recommend a reasonably priced damp meter for DIY use (mostly) to check an ageing caravan on a regular basis so as to catch any problems early and hopefully sort them out myself. There are so many around but I'm unsure which are most appropriate for caravans.
    Thanks,
    Pete...
  3. Noticed that the blinds at the front of the caravan had become loose and thought they just needed fixing back but when I looked the wall board in a couple of areas is spongy.

    Will have to get it looked at, could just be the seal around the top of the window though

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