Originally Posted by J0ker
Hi guys. I'm new to the site and need some guidance. I purchased a 2003 Wildcat 27RLS. There is a small area of delam (approx 12x12 inches) on the left side of the trailer. It's in the middle of the wall and the area around it is fine. I would expect that if it were due to a leak that it would start at a seam, opening or fixture. When I whack it with a mallet it sounds solid and there's no flex. Any idea what could have caused this? If I do discover a leak and the wood is still solid do I need to replace it? I was thinking of drilling some holes and injecting epoxy behind it to bond it back.
Anyone else have this issue with the same model trailer. Thanks in advance.
It probably was not bonded well in that area from the beginning. Delamination plagues all companies from time to time. I have seen a million dollars Prevost being stripped to deal with the problem (fiberglass panels not sticking to the stainless steel frame). Most of the sidewalls these days are bonded as a wall unit, either on a vacuum press or a panel press and then all the openings are routed out with routers and a jig. The main bonds occur to the wood framing embedded in the wall for structural stiffness and frames around windows and doors. Most likely they skipped the epoxy or glue in that area or it didn't set right. Water probably didn't have anything to do with it, unless it it was in there for a long time and rotted the wood inside.
Your solution is a good one, the trick is to find the wood member behind the panel. If you do than I would inject the epoxy in there and "temporarily" screw the panel into the member to apply some pressure on the bond. Few extra holes wouldn't matter you can epoxy those over "after the fix". Another trick is to set vertically a long 2 x 4 or 2 x 6, catch the ends of the plank with long ratcheting straps around the rig, put a small piece of 2 x 6 between the the plank and the area you are re-gluing and tighten the ratchets. That should put pressure on that small piece of 2 x 6 and "encourage" the bonding. I actually have seen a whole new wall bonded like that at a high end fifth manufacturer, although their jigs were a little more "elegant" than 2 x 4s.