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Old 05-21-2011, 04:48 PM   #1
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Kitchen cabinet problem

2006 40" FDQS Apex
Some months ago, we noticed problems with the forward end of our lower kitchen cabinets.
1) The back RH corner of the cooktop and Karadon in that area was sagging approximately 1/8". The seam in the Karadon was broken.
2) When the galley slide was retracted, the forward end of the cabinet pulled away from the wall about 1/4". I suspect that a slight sag of the slide floor caused the front lower cabinet corner to go down and the resulting torque caused the back upper corner to pull away from the wall. Note that there is no structure in the wall to attach the cabinet in this area.

The pictures below hopefully explain what I did to fix the problem and hopefully that is the end of it.
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Old 05-26-2011, 06:00 PM   #2
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cabinets

Contact Scott at Amazing Creations they are fantastic, with the pictures you have they can probably walk you thru repairs. Phone no. 541-556-0501, they have helped many Alpiners.
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Old 05-27-2011, 08:57 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Christopher Cratch View Post
Contact Scott at Amazing Creations they are fantastic, with the pictures you have they can probably walk you thru repairs. Phone no. 541-556-0501, they have helped many Alpiners.
Scott did a lot of cabinet modifications for us when the coach was new and does great work. I was able to fix this one myself.

Most RVers have fled Palm Springs but we are still here.
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Old 05-27-2011, 02:29 PM   #4
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Basil, make sure that the drain line and water lines are not leaking into the slide floor. Some kind of chipboard floor, it will collapse if it's wet a lot, and could cause the sinking. Many folks have reported the drain line in the slide lose or failing because WRV used such stiff plumging which does not flex enough to make a good seal all the time.
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Old 05-27-2011, 11:37 PM   #5
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Monty,

The sub floor in Basil's coach is Weyerhaeuser Structurwood, not chipboard, and not regular oriented strand board (OSB). It is a special product made in 8'x8' and 8'x24' panels for RVs. It has a different board density than regular OSB and isocynate resin, rather than phenol formaldehyde like in exterior plywood, that is more resistant to moisture. The thing about Structurwood is that as long as moisture doesn't sit with no place to go, for example if it can drain through it, it won't rot very quickly, like other forms of this product will.

I know this product well because I was in charge of the plants that made it and sold it to WRV and other major RV companies. We also sold Structurwood made with a different resin and density for subfloors in housing (Edge Gold is a big product in the northwest because it resists moisture during construction better than other products), and we also made wall and roofing sheathing from it.

The advantage of the bigger panel and the manufacturing formula was that it produced less flex than 4x8 plywood or regular OSB, along with better moisture resistance. However, it does flex, and we told WRV and other manufacturers that tile was not a good floor substance to use in RVs, because of flex, but WRV continued to put it in because they said customers wanted it. We eventually stopped selling Structurwood to RV manufacturers because of this issue and others from poorer quality manufacturers.

In Basils' case, I think the structure of the galley slide may be more of an issue and not have enough support for travel over time, and that may be the bigger culprit. In any case, looks like Basil put a good fix on the problem.




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Old 05-27-2011, 11:51 PM   #6
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OF - You know more of this than I and I will be the first to say so. So do you know if they used the 8X24 feet ones, or the other size for the main floor of the coach? Do you think that Basil Problem is inherent for the rest of us? Thank you for the info, and yeah, we have a few cracked tiles, but they don’t seem to be getting any worse, or cracking further. Need the Fein multitool to take them out successfully, but have to justify that kind of expense. Kustom Koach works has one and we saw it in action, Bobby said it saves him tons of time and money every job, and that brand has the highest RPM or any of that type of tool. FWIW-yesterday purchase a porter cable compressor with a 150 PSI max pressure, which will go into the smart bed and does not weight a ton, I can use it with my business, and take it with us to pump up the tires, as I don’t get enough out of the engine run compressor. Home Depot had it for 99.00, the lady who helped me said best selling one in the country, and assembled in the USA of USA and foreign parts.

Basil - looking at the pics, a little confused about which end, it appears to be end closest to the couch pointing forward? You have the Quad Slide, so your kitchen is different than ours, guess I will have to look up the brochure and see the floorplan to see the layout for real. Not sure it we have a panel which will pull up at that point. Ours is not doing this yet. Is your slide on the DS the big one?
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Old 05-28-2011, 11:01 AM   #7
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Monty,

It could have been either 8x8 or 8x24, depending on what WRV had in stock at the time of build. They didn't always order consistently and had to cut the panels to fit because of the different coach lengths, changes in production schedule, and need to avoid wasting panels. They were also using the same panels on the Alpenlite fifth wheels. Either one would work, but the 8x24 would have one less seam, which was the original idea to reduce flexing. If I were building it, I would have used the 8x24 in the front portion of the coach and the shorter panels in the back, because of the tile area in the front. I visited the factory with one of my techs to respond to a claim in 2004/2005 where WRV was complaining about cracked tiles under the driver's seat, and blaming the sub-floor. We looked at their assembly on the shop floor, took some span/load measurements and concluded their was not enough blocking (too much span) under the floor in that area for the amount of weight concentrated on the tiles by the seat and the driver. We told WRV again on that trip that tiles in a motorhome over our subfloor was not a good idea, but they said that their customers wanted tile and they would take care of any issues with it. I think WRV made a correction under the seat area on future coaches because our 2006 does not have that issue, or I don't weigh enough to cause the problem.

I have averaged about one new cracked tile a year -- up to 5 cracked ones in 5 years. I have the 4 spare tiles WRV supplied with the coach, but that's it. Even though I knew when I bought the coach that some of the tiles would eventually crack, my plan was, and still is, to wait until I decide to sell the coach and replace the most noticeable ones at that time with my spare tiles, or maybe I can find one that matches well enough to get me up to the amount that are cracked at that time. They're just not noticeable enough to bother us, and we figure it's an RV, not our house, so as long as they're not producing a big gap or letting moisture in to the subfloor, might as well wait. I have seen them taken out with a Dremel and chisel, but it's a fair amount of work.

I don't know that Basil's issue is inherent for the rest of us. Does not seem to be a lot of postings on that issue. It may be a bigger problem in the 40's, and the Apex's, with their extra weight, smart beds, long slides, and if full timing or using more like Basil, with more weight in and on that slide. That may be producing more flex in the slide and more frame flex than for those that aren't in that situation. I have not seen this in our 36', and it has exactly the same Karadon as Basil's counter and backsplash. I have noticed the gap betweent the stove covers and the countertop is a little wider than I think it should be -- perhaps 1/8" -- but that could have just been sloppy cutting of the stove covers since the counter is not moving.
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Old 05-28-2011, 11:21 AM   #8
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OF - WRV Boutht the tile from Home Depot, as the factory told us that when we toured it. So you might see if you can get them from that source. We have 13" tiles and they are hard to find. Before we got it, either WRV or dealer replaced at least 10-15 of them in the bathroom and kitchen area. So we have two styles, close, not not the same. Again like you we don't worry about it, it's not getting any worse, and we don't spill anything, if we do we clean it right up.

Our stove covers sometimes get real tight so their is some flexing in that slide, don't know if it's heat or what. I thought about having about 1/16" shaved off all three sides, but don't know where to have that done so it looks good. A tile saw might work, but not sure. It is not that big a deal.

Hope we hook up sometime over a cold one, so we can swap war stories.
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Old 05-28-2011, 02:14 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Rv'er View Post
Basil - looking at the pics, a little confused about which end, it appears to be end closest to the couch pointing forward? You have the Quad Slide, so your kitchen is different than ours, guess I will have to look up the brochure and see the floorplan to see the layout for real. Not sure it we have a panel which will pull up at that point. Ours is not doing this yet. Is your slide on the DS the big one?
At 14' 10+" long, the galley slide in a 40' quad slide is BIG & HEAVY. In addition, we have a queen size pillow top air mattress hidabed couch which is probably heavier than the standard jack knife bed couch. I think we were the only ones to get this unlisted option.

Old, yes, the end of the cabinet by the couch is the area that was pulling away from the wall. When the slide is pulled in, there is no support under the inside edge and it is possible for that edge to sag slightly, pulling the front of the cabinet down with it. When the bottom front of the cabinet goes down then the top back edge must be pulled inward toward the center of the coach.

The top edge of the cabinet is screwed into some wood structure inside the wall except, in my case, about the last 9 or 10". The structure inside the wall ended at that point. So, there was enough force inward to pull the end of the cabinet away from the wall about 1/4".

I added screws to tie the cabinet to the wall until I ran out of support structure in the wall. I then pulled the slide in to discover that there was still a gap. I added a piece of 1/2" plywood on top of the cabinet to keep it from twisting and that was enough to fix the problem.

I notice that our stove covers now fit much better and the countertop is good as new.

I suspect this is an uncommon problem but you might take a look next time you pull in your slides.
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Old 05-29-2011, 12:07 AM   #10
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Monty,

Will try to find a time on our travels into Oregon this summer to hook up with you for that cold one.

The Karadon countertop we have is similar to Corian and LG Hi-Macs, which we have in our new house countertops, and it's relatively easy to sand off the edges to make them narrower. What I would do is take the stove top covers to a countertop place that sells and installs Corian or LG Hi-Macs (sold by Lowes), and they should be able to power sand that off your in a flash. Should be cheaper than buying the equipment and using it once.

Basil,

Suspected it might be the weight of the slide and extra weight you might have in the coach, and also it was the end next to the couch. Still sounds like you have a good solution to the issue. I looked at ours in storage with the slide pulled in and it looks fine. But we just don't have the weight you do do.

Glad you're still in Palm Springs. With the wet weather we have had in Western Washington, this year I wish we had stayed there until Mid May instead of coming home in early April again, like we usually do.
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Old 05-29-2011, 09:13 AM   #11
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I discovered the same phenomenon when I put tile on the wall of the Alpine...First time I brought in the slide after the gout set, I saw the 1/8" separation. but then my coach was built in late 2002 so it is already 9 years old..

When fully retracted the RH side of the kitchen cabinets pull away from the wall by 1/8-1/4 inch. As Basil said, this is because the floor no longer supports the weight of the huge slide as it lifts up off the floor. As there is no water damage to the wall or the floor, I believe WRV designed the Alpine this way to allow for the flex the slide goes through as it extends and retracts and while it flexes going down the road. (but I'm no engineer, so anything I presume is inherently flawed)

I decided that raher than attempt to support the entire weight of the slide by a few well placed screws, (BTW any fasteners meant to support the weight of the slide should fasten into the aluminum support structure, not just the wooden wall) I would leave it as is and cover the "crack, when retracted with a piece of flexible (plastic) half round that accents the color choices.

If it grets larger, I will have to cross that bridge when we come to it.
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Old 05-29-2011, 06:27 PM   #12
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Quote:
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I discovered the same phenomenon when I put tile on the wall of the Alpine...First time I brought in the slide after the gout set, I saw the 1/8" separation. but then my coach was built in late 2002 so it is already 9 years old..

When fully retracted the RH side of the kitchen cabinets pull away from the wall by 1/8-1/4 inch. As Basil said, this is because the floor no longer supports the weight of the huge slide as it lifts up off the floor. As there is no water damage to the wall or the floor, I believe WRV designed the Alpine this way to allow for the flex the slide goes through as it extends and retracts and while it flexes going down the road. (but I'm no engineer, so anything I presume is inherently flawed)

I decided that raher than attempt to support the entire weight of the slide by a few well placed screws, (BTW any fasteners meant to support the weight of the slide should fasten into the aluminum support structure, not just the wooden wall) I would leave it as is and cover the "crack, when retracted with a piece of flexible (plastic) half round that accents the color choices.

If it grets larger, I will have to cross that bridge when we come to it.
On my coach, it appears that WRV installed a piece of wood inside the wall behind the thin luan plywood to attach the cabinet to. As I was drilling pilot holes for my wood screws you could tell where the wood ended and the foam insulation started. I tried to find aluminum structure to no avail. With the two additional screws and beefing up the top of the cabinet with plywood, the gap is gone when the slide is retracted.

Of course the final test will be rockin' & rollin' down the road when we leave Palm Springs heading north in a few weeks.



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Old 06-01-2011, 12:41 AM   #13
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Mine has some flex, too. However, they really glued the Karadon in. Let me assure you it is quite loud when the Karadon gives way. I though we'd been hit by a meteorite. Several months later, the rest of the pressure was relieved with the same startling explosive sound.

The result were two cracks, right of the stove, over the drawer stack (my stove is centered on the main cabinet run). $350 repair looks perfect.
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