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Old 11-19-2013, 07:01 AM   #1
lhutter1's Avatar
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Thompson, OH
Posts: 37
Twist and rack in roof

Hey guys!

I'm looking for information on roof/ceiling movement in a trailer/5th wheel. We had some damage to some of our ceiling panels, due to a couple leaks. The leaks I can take care of and make some major design improvements on as I go. My current issue is the ceiling...

The ceiling panels were originally covered with marine vinyl and foam. All of the vinyl shrunk over time and it's also holding a musty smell that can only be removed by getting rid of the vinyl itself. The water damaged panels have been removed. This opens up some options... I'm thinking of replacing the panels with luan (1/3 the cost) and coating the whole ceiling and texturing with Bondo (yes, Bondo, works awesome with wood!) and then painting. To do this I would remove the strips between the panels, which are all either now missing or shot and filling the voids in. It would more resemble a home ceiling.

Has anyone tried this type of repair or construction? My concern in doing this is that the strips may offer some sort of relief when the trailer racks or twists on the road. Can anyone verify if that is the case? If there is some sort of movement between panels, how much movement is there?

Thanks in advance!

1999 Spinnaker 36RLE...

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Old 11-19-2013, 09:29 AM   #2
Senior Member
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Janesville, wi
Posts: 642
If you use a compound to fill the gap between the "butt" ends of the panels, I am sure expansion/contraction will open a "crack". Why not use plastic joint strips that are made to join panels ??

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Old 11-20-2013, 05:57 AM   #3
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Join Date: May 2012
Location: Thompson, OH
Posts: 37
Hey Tom,

My original thought was to just make the whole ceiling the same texture, eliminating the battens all together. Not a big fan of the appearance of them. I'm trying to bring the interior up to a more modern high endish look, recessed lights, faux finished walls and such. I wasn't sure about movement between the boards and it looks as though my concerns were valid, so I'll still do the light texture, but will install new batten strips.

1999 Spinnaker 36RLE...

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