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Old 10-14-2019, 08:17 PM   #1
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Removing sub-floor

Hi, again. My 2001 Mountainaire 40' DP had a historic leak when I bought it. I've tracked down the leaks, but now I have to replace a bit of subfloor and it's presenting a problem.

The damage is along the driver's side edge, from the very front of the bus back about 7 feet. I say "about" because I can't see under there very well. I don't think it goes under the actual kitchen, I think it stops under the couch area. The damage extends toward the centerline of the bus less than 2 feet, according to my sampling. I think the outermost wood joist is a loss, too. I'd like to cut out and replace that portion of subfloor, then surface with luxury vinyl planking.

The problem is that the long kitchen slide restricts access to the area of floor I need to address. There is old, nasty carpet still over that area that I have been unable to rip, pry, or pull out. It's stapled in place, and I've only got about an inch (if that) clearance between the subfloor and the slide bottom. Once I get that carpet out, I still need to dig out the rotted particleboard and refit the outer joist.

Short of completely removing the slide (which looks like it would take a couple of forklifts to support and pull), what are my options?
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Old 10-14-2019, 08:25 PM   #2
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Use search...others have posted how to put a board on the top of the slide which when the slide is closed, the slide angles up to allow access underneath. It's been documented many times so I won't.
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Old 10-15-2019, 10:02 AM   #3
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Here is a picture of what Dav L is referring to. Start with a 2x2 on the roof of the slide, if that isn't enough, try a 2x4 and so on until it gives you enough clearance or the top of the slide frame contacts the ceiling. Not for the faint of heart...
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Old 10-15-2019, 11:43 AM   #4
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Thanks for the picture, fatchance. I can visualize most of that. Do I want this board completely across the top, or would a stud length do it? This is a long slide with both the kitchen and couch.
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Old 10-15-2019, 11:56 AM   #5
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Doesn't have to be across the whole top. Best would be two, one on each end. This will keep the slide square to the opening.

You just don't want too small which puts the load on one spot and that's where things would then bend. The biggest issue is controlling when to stop the slide from closing.
This depends on the type of slide controller. Best would be a switch that when released, stops. My Bounder had that. My Newmar is a momentary switch that the controller will keep closing it until it sees a high current draw (it's "closed"). I think one can quick stab the switch while closing to stop the closing (this is what you would want to do with that type system). Experiment without the board to get used to how you can stop the closing.

If you can replace the flooring, you can also do this. Not rocket science.
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Old 10-15-2019, 12:59 PM   #6
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I agree that this isn't brain science. But I'd rather ask what to do ahead of time than ask how to fix what I did afterward.

I'll try tilting today. My 2001 has a momentary switch (faulty, so I'm just touching wires. I'll replace it when I can get to the parts house). I'm getting pretty good at stopping the motor when I want to.
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Old 10-15-2019, 01:35 PM   #7
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A pair of 4x4s across the top tilted the slide. Scary, but it gives a couple inches of clearance. I'll see what I've gained as I get into the demo today. Thanks to both of you for the insights!
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Old 10-15-2019, 08:40 PM   #8
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BTW, just like working under the chassis...I would put some blocks INSIDE under the lifted slide to ensure it won't fall and trap your arm underneath...

You can also try putting two floor jacks inside with a longer block of wood inbetween the jack and the bottom of the slide to lift a bit higher than where it is now. Just be careful not to load it too much, that the lift is distributed, and that nothing is getting squashed from being overzealous.
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Old 10-16-2019, 01:46 PM   #9
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I'm not sticking body parts anywhere they could get crushed. I'm bracing everything.

With this long kitchen slide I can only tilt a couple inches before the cabinetry touches the ceiling. It's very little room. I'm still exploring underneath, but this might be futile.
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Old 10-16-2019, 08:13 PM   #10
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The outer side floor joist has your side wall setting on it with the wall metal framed wall 16" on center and a runner metal joist screwed into that joist.
Isn't there something like new wood that can hold that floor joist together and protect the good wood.
Will be a tight operation.
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Old 10-17-2019, 12:47 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by "007" View Post
The outer side floor joist has your side wall setting on it with the wall metal framed wall 16" on center and a runner metal joist screwed into that joist.
Isn't there something like new wood that can hold that floor joist together and protect the good wood.
Will be a tight operation.
Are you suggesting that a new joist could be laid beside the rotted one instead of removing the rotted one and replacing it?
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Old Yesterday, 06:32 PM   #12
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Thanks for all the advice. I used blocks on top of the slide to tip the bottom upward as the slide retracted. I was able to get enough clearance to pull the nasty carpet out and get a look at the extent of the subfloor damage. I'm not sure I can operate underneath though -- just not enough knuckle room.

It does look as though the bottom slide seal (chassis side) and its hangery might be removable for access from the outside. Is this a viable option or an exploding can of worms?

And, there is a filled, 3/8" gap in the subflooring where I assume the cap joins the rest of the bus. It's 4' back from the inside front wall and extends the width of the floor (or right behind the driver seat pedestal, if that helps). In the driver seat area, the subfloor is damaged on both sides of this gap. As I replace the wood, should this gap be preserved for design/structural reasons, or can I eliminate it as I renovate? My intent is to finish with vinyl plank flooring.
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Old Yesterday, 07:09 PM   #13
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I sold a 2002 tt because of the same problem. I don't know how the new owners fixed it but they sent pictures of the new floor repair. He started in the morning and had it repaired the same evening. It was rotted so bad that the slide would sink about 3 inches when extended. I had to jack it up to bring it in .It must not be that complicated once you figure how to reach everything. If you look where the outside wall is there is not really much floor there when fully extended. He did say his father was a carpenter and brother was in the construction business. I am sure that helped with the project. Good luck with your repair.
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