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Old 08-26-2010, 11:10 AM   #1
Pez
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Fiberglass cracked

New member asking for help.
Cleaning the roof I discovered 2 fiberglass cracks about 3 inches in length in the area where the fiberglass rolls off the roof. One crack is located on top right side forward of the rear cap about 5 feet. Have another crack on top left side in about the same distance and length.
I was up on the roof the day before our last trip and there was no evidence of any cracks. My best guess is cracks happen on our return trip home or on the way to our destination.
It appears to me they are stress cracks. I do not understand how the coach can be subjected to any stress in this area.
I have a appointment with Monaco in Oregon November 8th. I want Monaco to fix the problem. Do not know any good fiberglass people in this area. I know I will have to pay for fix so my thinking is Monaco built unit and should be the best fix for correcting the problem.
The unit is a triple slide 2008 Diplomat with the full wall slide.
Have any of you experience this problem?
Looking for any suggestions you might have.

Thanks
Pez
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Old 08-26-2010, 01:06 PM   #2
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Sorry to read about your misfortune.

I think that Monaco will certainly be the most expensive. I am sure that it will be possible to find alternatives that are equally qualified for the job and a lot less expensive. As I understand from your post the crack are in an area that is not immediate visible and I therefor don't think that the repair will be all that costly. Fiberglass is a relatively easy material to work with.

Can I recommend that you seal the cracks until a repair is carried out. A couple of simple strips of Ducktape would probably be sufficient. If water/moisture gets into your coach you may be facing other repair jobs that could have been avoided.
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Old 08-26-2010, 01:42 PM   #3
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I don't know your location but if you are down south you could go to down to the old Wildwood repair location which is now being run by an ex Monaco person that I hear is good..If you are in the Indiana/Southern MI area, there is another place I can recommend as that person is also ex Monaco...you can post if you are anyway near these two places and then I can tell you where to get to..It is kind of moot if you are on west coast.
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Old 08-26-2010, 01:59 PM   #4
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On my old Montana it developed what looked to be stress cracks near the top front cover. But when I rubbed them out real good with a cleaner polish the "cracks" went away and never returned. So I suggest to clean them first to make sure.

Sometimes you can keep a crack from growing by drilling small holes at each end of the crack. Then fill in with Dicor sealeant and wait and see if it gets larger.

Could you post a pix? There are a lot of experts on this forum
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Old 08-26-2010, 02:09 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bullydogs1 View Post
I don't know your location but if you are down south you could go to down to the old Wildwood repair location which is now being run by an ex Monaco person that I hear is good..If you are in the Indiana/Southern MI area, there is another place I can recommend as that person is also ex Monaco...you can post if you are anyway near these two places and then I can tell you where to get to..It is kind of moot if you are on west coast.
Where in S. Michigan/Indiana? Thanks
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Old 08-26-2010, 02:43 PM   #6
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Pez, You could take it to a auto body shop that works on Corvettes - they'd certainly be capable of doing satisfactory fiberglass repairs. You could get an estimate prior to heading to Monaco. I lived on a fiberglass boat for over 12 years and will say that often fiberglass does craze or have numerous surface cracks that may not be structural defects but do look bad.
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Old 08-26-2010, 09:07 PM   #7
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Thank You to every one for the suggestions.
I will drill a small hole at each end of the cracks and see if they get larger. I am located on the west coast, Modesto, Ca.. Will try and locate a body shop that works on corvette's and see what they suggest.
I was and still in shock when I discovered the cracks. I can not even tell you what was going through my mine when I was on the roof of the MH.
Received a call from a friend this afternoon that suggested a shop in the area that works with fiberglass. I will stop by and see what they suggest
tomorrow.
I feel much better after I received your suggestions. I just need to locate a good fiberglass man in the area.
I agree, I will have to reach deep in my pockets if I use Monaco for a fix.

Thanks
Pez
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Old 08-27-2010, 12:26 AM   #8
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A fellow Monaco owner in Modesto has all his service work performed by R Mechanic Svc Center in Livermore, CA (925) 294-9645. He is very impressed with their quality workmanship. You could call and ask if they do "roof repair" or "fiberglass repair." We have owned a 2007 Monaco 40SFT model for about a year. We are located in Sacramento. If you wish to "compare notes", send me an eMail.
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Old 08-29-2010, 01:41 PM   #9
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I would not have Monaco fix it regardless of price. I had a crack in the same area and when I started the repair (repaired it myself as I know fiberglass) found Monaco had intentionally cut the cap with a skill saw to fit it. Then they used bondo to fill and painted. Of course it cracked with the slightest movement. Be sure who ever fixes it understands the stress the caps are under and uses fiberglass mat and resin, not body filler.
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Old 08-29-2010, 02:41 PM   #10
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Pez, Are you certain that the crack is in the fiberglass? The white on the roof that you can see is NOT fiberglass........it's gel coat. If the cracks you see are not ragged on the edges it's most likely just the gel coat. Fiberglass makes a pretty ragged break line when it breaks......it does not normally just crack. Gel coat will crack. The gel coat is cosmetic and does not add strength or integrity to the fiberglass.
If it were my coach I would clean then fill the crack with gel coat and keep an eye on it to see if it cracks again. If it re-cracks then have a fiberglass shop repair the areas. If it doesn't re-crack then sand then buff the area you filled with gel coat. If you use the correct color gel coat you will never see where it was patched. Read up on gel coat....easy to work with.
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Old 08-30-2010, 11:53 AM   #11
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Hate to be a pain in the #$%@, just want a good fix on problem and need to make sure I am going about this correctly.
Took another look at cracks. The cracks are on the fiberglass area where the fiberglass rolls off the roof. The panel on both sides is attached by screws and sets on top of a stud that runs the length of the MH. The top of this panel is rolled back into the gel coat and attached. The side of MH is not attached to this panel. This panel has a lip that covers the side panel as it is attached to the stud.
The cracks are forward of the end cap about 3 feet. It appears to me that the panels had been cut on both sides filled in with some type of material. The material is raised slightly and never was sanded down to make it even and smooth with the panel. It is very easy to see that there was a cut because it is a straight line after I peeled some of the material off.
Have made the decision not to make the trip to Monaco. I have 3 options for a fix. Just trying to make a decision on who is most qualified.
Questions, 1. What type of material is under gel coat? To me it appears that it is sheet of fiberglass.
2. For a fix of problem, can a fiberglass mat be put over cracks and covered with resin. Sand resin smooth and also attached with screws then paint. I feel with screws attached to mat it will make it stronger in this area.

Thanks
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Old 08-30-2010, 12:30 PM   #12
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[QUOTE=Pez;693885]Questions, 1. What type of material is under gel coat? Under the gel coat is either fiberglass "chop" or f/g mat. Chop is made of short strands of f/g in rondom directions. mat is like cloth.....long strands in two directions. When this is laid down then it is soaked in resin. when the resin hardens it retains the shape of the form. To me it appears that it is sheet of fiberglass.
2. For a fix of problem, can a fiberglass mat be put over cracks and covered with resin. Sand resin smooth and also attached with screws then paint. feel with screws attached to mat it will make it stronger in this area. Essentially what you said is a good way to fix it. But, first sand off the gel coat in the area to be patched and apply chop and resin directly to old f/g. Sand when hardened then gel coat then sand then buff. Don't use screws as the existing f/g is probably too thin to hold the screw. Also, check with Monaco to hopefully determine what type of resin was used so you can use a compatible resin

Hope this helps you get it fixed
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Old 08-31-2010, 05:39 PM   #13
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Monaco will not fix this problem at no charge. Guaranty RV in Coburg have a fantastic body shop as does Mr. Lee the original owner of CC. Forget going to a Corvette shop. If you want to have this area painted after the repair it is probably illegal in most states if it is not done in a paint booth. You wont find a 50 ft. booth where they fix Corvettes. You have received lots of good advice.
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Old 09-08-2010, 10:28 PM   #14
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Call Guaranty RV Service in Junction City, Oregon and ask for Scott Stevens at the bodyshop. He is the person who is head of the bodyshop section. He and his crew fixed several cracks on our 2007 40ft Safari Cheetah w/fullwall slide (Monaco product, much like your Diplomat). Our roof has no seems between the front and end caps and the main roof panels. The roof is like the Camelot. I believe yours has seams between the end caps and the main roof panel. However... we had 6 inch cracks in the same areas as you discribed and Guaranty added fiberglass mat and repainted with superb results. Scott stated that Monaco used very thin fiberglass and bondo to save money on thier coaches.
Please only use duct tape to cover your cracks until you get them fixed. If you try to seal them with silicone or other sealing products, it will interfere with the cleaning of the cracks before repair and will make the process go longer. This as per Scott Stevens. Luckily I called him when I found mine.
He is an expert with fixing Monaco cracks, and believe me, you're not alone.
Good Luck,
AKBrick
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