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Old 03-09-2013, 09:22 PM   #1
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1975 Coachmen Cadet - where to start

I just brought home a 1975 Coachmen Cadet, and I'm a first time owner. It seems that the TT is in overall good shape, and still had original upholstery and everything. . . including all the manuals and invitations to all the 1976 KOA events!

There is a small roof leak around the AC unit in the roof though, and I'm just wondering where to start? Take down the sagging ceiling or take out the AC unit? Anyone have thoughts or suggestions? I really just jumped into the deep end here, and learning a lot quickly.

I will post pics when I can. Thanks!
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Old 03-10-2013, 04:40 AM   #2
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Either way would seem to make sense as both components needs to come down. I guess I"d start by removing the A/C since you've got to take the trim off the inside anyway to access the remainder of the ceiling material. "A little leak" can be bigger than the surface shows, so removing the entire ceiling makes a lot of sense so you can get a good look at what you're dealing with.

Congrats on the new to you TT and I'm looking forward to seeing the pics. Oh, and welcome to irv2!
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Old 03-10-2013, 11:45 AM   #3
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As e money says, remove the A/C first. You will be able to tell if the leak was where the A/C opening was in the roof. Make the necessary repairs to the roof, clean off any sealant around the 14X14 opening and clean off what remains of the foam gasket on the A/C and install a new gasket. If the A/C was the original one may be a good time to think about replacing the unit.
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Old 03-10-2013, 06:12 PM   #4
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I replaced the ceiling in our Coachmen Cadet by using 1/4 luan-normally used as flooring underlayment. I used a sharp knife and cut the old ceiling plywood about 1" away from the walls. (This gave me something to glue the new plywood to for added strength. Then I ripped strips of plywood and nailed them to the ceiling joists for furring strips. I pre painted the luan before cutting it to fit the ceilings. (I was able to use the original ceiling plastic seam strips for the joints.) Once the ceiling was installed I caulked with clear caulking where the ceiling met the walls, sprayed two cans of ceiling texture on it and then painted the whole ceiling white. Seems to be durable and easy to repair if ever needed.

I liked the luan so much, that I rebuild the cab over walls and ceiling and and also used around the rear gaucho area. Then painted the luan. I sure brightened the inside of the motor home.

I took all of the windows out and resealed them. (That is when I discovered I needed to replace some of the frames in the rear guacho area.) Before I reset the windows, I used alum tape on the sides and bottom of the window openings and lapped it over the exterior siding and interior luan. That way if the windows leak, the tape should direct the water away from behind the siding or the plywood.

Hope this helps, Phil
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Old 03-11-2013, 07:47 AM   #5
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Thanks a lot guys. Well you were right about there not being a "small leak."
I took off the AC, which still works fine, so I'm not sure about replacing it Tex. It wasn't that hard to get out, so I'm ok replacing down the line if necessary. But when I took out the ceiling, water was pouring out of the soaked OSB and insulation. Two of the ceiling joists are rotted beyond repair as well. See link for photos and I took a video as well:
https://www.dropbox.com/sh/k7m87ycsr...sYQ?n=80015742
1975 Coachmen Cadet XL - YouTube

My big question is on the roof. I think I may have another "small leak" by the skylight in the back, but the ceiling isn't noticeably soft like it was by the AC, I just can see some of the wallpaper on the ceiling that is coming up.
I'm thinking it may just be easier to replace the whole metal roof rather than patching in places. Anyone have thoughts on this or know difficulty level? I figured this would be the best way to make sure I have a good roof, insulation and structure. Also, where to buy a metal roof for this? Old one looks like strips of 36" by 8' galvanized metal.

Beap, I like the luan idea, but not so much the ceiling texture, is this like popcorn ceiling?

Thanks for all the help, I'm thrilled to have found this forum!
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Old 03-11-2013, 10:35 AM   #6
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That's a cool old camper there, abl. Nothing beats Avecado Green! I'm no help as to where to source the material, but it does seem a lot wiser to just go ahead and replace the entire ceiling. A lot of your structural integrity lies in the roof so if you have the means and ability, you'll thank yourself later. Plus, she looks like she was well taken care of and deserves a new do, so-to-speak. Good luck and keep us posted!
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Old 03-14-2013, 07:52 PM   #7
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I purchased the cans of spray texture from Lowes. It wasn't pop corn but just a light pebbled texture. From what I remember, the texture came with different nozzles and I chose the one to spray the lightest texture.
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Old 03-14-2013, 08:31 PM   #8
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I ran in to a few of them like that I would get rid of the metal roof then you can rebuild the framing and put a rubber roof back on or metal.
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Old 08-13-2016, 07:49 PM   #9
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OP, Would you be able to scan and share the manual from your trailer? I'm looking at buying the same mode.
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Old 08-14-2016, 06:59 PM   #10
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Cool camper!!

I agree with the advice to put a rubber roof on. Most leeks come from the AC and sky lights. Do a search on the internet for others that have replaced roofs.
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