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Author Topic: Interior wall thickness  (Read 4962 times)
philiptompkjns
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« on: March 30, 2010, 03:19:15 PM »

So what thickness do ya'll use for interior walls?  I don't see why you'd need 4" walls like a house when space is such an issue.
I think they were 2" in the S&S units.
Also, how many of you insulate between rooms?  From my S&S RV experience I see where this is a good thing, only A/C the bedroom at night, and only A/C the front OTR. 

And what size "studs" do ya'll use? 
Thanks
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« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2010, 04:45:41 PM »

I decided to use 1" square tubing and weld the frame, then skinned with 1/4" plywood.  The walls for the head got insulation and eventually a nice snug fit. For outer walls (those with cabinets) I used 1/2" for strength.  I made double frames for the pocket doors 1/2" wider than the door for clearance and plastic guides.

So far so good, logged ~ 10k miles so far and ... knock on wood.  

The frame for the bathroom, washer, etc is glued and screwed to the T&G floor and the 1/2" plywood covering the outside walls, opposed to welding it to the steel bits in the bus.  I did this to cut down on direct noise transfer.  Seems to have worked as well.
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« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2010, 05:36:32 PM »

I don't have an interior wall other than the metal frame of the bus.  My bus frame is 2" thick tubular steel.  I insulated the space between the tubing as necessary and then covered everything with 3/8" plywood.

I designed everything so there are no outlets or switches on the exterior walls.  All switches and outlets are on interior walls with outlets overhead on the shelves in the living room.
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« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2010, 10:04:00 PM »

My exterior walls on the truck are .062 aluminum skin, 1.5" square tubing, .75" apitong 1x3 slats on 16" horizontal centers, then .25" plywood for a total of 2.562".  Then any interior wall will be 3/4" furniture grade plywood (why make it any thicker and loose more space?).  I made my bathroom enclosure in my bus out of 3/4" plywood with 1.5" angle iron reinforcements on select walls, and has worked well.  Will do it again.  Good Luck, TomC
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« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2010, 05:56:07 AM »

My bus, which had all the interior done when I bought it, was done all in 3/4" plywood.  While it makes some things easy, there is no looking for a stud when you want to tie in or mount something, it has to be way heavier than it needs to be.  it's strong and stable, takes little room, but I think some mixing it up with thinner lighter material could have been done, maybe in the cabinets, or the exterior wall panelling.  There is no stud-walls at all anywhere, with Luan skinned over top, like you see in S&S Moho's.

I am now struggling with the best way to decoratively cover the construction grade fir plywood that the PO used, since the wallpaper idea is starting to peel off.

Brian
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« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2010, 06:23:05 AM »

We have only two dividing walls and used the biggest pocket door we could get which determined the wall thickness.then sheeted over frame with 3/8 plywood..possible wall covering ;use quilt batting and cover with upholstery fabric;for splash area they have a clear vinyl iron on material to water proof fabric...neat easily changed,won't peel,takes temp changes,and sound deadening.
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« Reply #6 on: March 31, 2010, 07:06:30 AM »

I'm going to run the wall fabric idea past SWMBO.  I tried with vinyl, but got "the look".  She collects Arts and Crafts fabrics, the bus is going to have an Arts and Crafts theme, they were big in wallpaper back then, the fabric is a lot like the wallpaper, some of the same patterns, I may sense a theme starting...   Cheesy

Brian
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philiptompkjns
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« Reply #7 on: March 31, 2010, 09:00:42 AM »

Allright, so basically is dosen't matter.

I am going to put all electrical in the interior wall and cabinets, that way I don't have any insuation leaks where the electrical boxes are.

I'll have either a 1" or 2" gap, depending on which was I turn the 1x2 "studs", I'll just experiment with how small I can get those elec. boxes.

Probably noone insulates these walls, I might do it just for kicks.... not that important though.

Thanks guys.
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« Reply #8 on: March 31, 2010, 09:32:40 AM »

I like having switches where I can easily reach them - not at the fixture only.
I like having outlets where I need them.
I like light weight.
I like sturdy.

So, I'm going to use steel tube (or formed channel) to frame the walls & clad them with 1/4" plywood or FRP with foam filling the voids.
Hopefully, my wiring plan will accommodate all future needs without requiring much disassembly.  Wink

GM made very sturdy walls around the washroom - they were thin. I'm paying attention to what they did too.
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« Reply #9 on: April 02, 2010, 05:35:53 AM »

I am planning on using 1-5/8 square steel studs and track.  It is strong, light, and deep enough to put in shallow outlet boxes and switches, and run plumbing lines and wiring through.  I do not plan on having any utilities inside my exterior walls.  Any wiring that needs to be run down a sidewall will be hidden behind a decorative chair rail that will be the break between the lower wainscot and upper vinyl wall covering.  I also plan on insulating walls, but mostly for sound deadening.

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« Reply #10 on: April 02, 2010, 05:51:04 AM »

I used standard 2x2 wood studs except for the bath plumbing. It's light and sturdy and so far OK. I did use a standard house type pocket door frame to separate the kitchen from the bath. Covered all walls with 1/2 plywood.
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« Reply #11 on: April 02, 2010, 06:04:39 AM »

Phil I misunderstood you original post on walls.For the side walls:I didn't use a thermal brake the first time and the metal frame transmitted heat and cold both ways.Since then I use at least a 1/2 inch foil covered foam over any metal exposed to outside plus insulate the gap..On humid mornings without the thermal brake you could see the outline of the sidewall framing from outside the bus..metal conducts heat and cold..so brake the path up..Tried just plywood with no insulating board (1st one)  to much transfer..Since then used foam board covered with plywood...stopped transferred. On dividing walls just make them sturdy enough when you stumble against them they don't fall down...and fit your mechanical needs....if I'm still in a fog...I guess it is bus lag from the trip to Fla...
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« Reply #12 on: April 02, 2010, 06:46:39 AM »

My interior walls are 2 1/2 steel studs for the bathroom so I could run plumbing inside the walls.  I used the 1 5/8" steel studs for the walls seperating my bunk beds.  The bunk walls have 12 volt outlets and a light for each bunk.

If I redo the bunks I will probably use some sort of steel tubing and weld them up.  Right now I used 3/4" plywood at the end of each bunk and made the bunk itself from 2x2s with 3/4" plywood for the platform.  (I have eight bunks.)
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« Reply #13 on: February 20, 2012, 10:19:24 AM »

Bob-
Did you put 1/2" foil-faced insulation over top of the frame factory-filled with spray foam? The PO went nuts with roof vents and cutting the insulation in the ceiling to mount lights. The other night while working in the bus (winter here with heat on in the bus) I could see condensation on the exposed metal roof. I plan to refill all that spray foam with Great Stuff and keep all outlets on interior walls. So did you use 1/2" foil-faced insulation on the interior ceiling too? Full sheets right over the frame and factory-filled spray foam? Thanks for clarifying -
-Nate
PS-didn't check on the PS leak yet, but thanks for that too Smiley
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« Reply #14 on: February 20, 2012, 01:58:46 PM »

my interior walls are constructed of 3/4 x 1-1/2 strips of plywood,on edge,with 1/2" ply skins on both sides. once glued and screwed together,these become very rigid,stable,relatively light,and you can still run wires and devices.
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« Reply #15 on: February 20, 2012, 03:52:05 PM »

Here is a video showing what I have done, and the second one showing what I am doing.  I dont know how this is going to work out, but we do not plane on using the bus in winter conditions. 

MC9 wall insulation finished


Bedroom paneling
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« Reply #16 on: February 20, 2012, 08:11:48 PM »

My interior walls are 2x4's turned the other way, clad with 1/4" plywood, and filled with polyisocyrunate.  This makes them 2" thick.  Currently the receptacles are just screwed to the plywood, but as I rewire, I'm putting them all in shallow boxes. 
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« Reply #17 on: February 21, 2012, 12:08:42 AM »

for my current bus, I am used 3/4 X 2 inch strips on edge, and most walls with 1/2 plywood. I got around 200 of these from my neighbor who had them saved from a furniture shop years ago. In the past, I started off with 2x4's then 2x2's in later bus, and 1 1/4 in sq tubing. I have seen some built with the 2x4 metal studs for commercial work.

I think the easiest for me to do was this last bus, and they are screwed together so i can take it apart if i wanna change something.
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« Reply #18 on: February 21, 2012, 10:03:04 AM »

We love wood!  Cheesy
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« Reply #19 on: February 21, 2012, 09:11:03 PM »

Exterior surfaces are two layers of 1/4" Luan. The second layer is glued to the first to make the thermal break. Insulation is your choice. My preference would be foam application. Interior walls can be as thin as 3/4" ply. 7 ply would be best.  You don't need to stud walls. Why waste the space?

Bill
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« Reply #20 on: February 22, 2012, 07:39:13 AM »

  3/4 plywood has an R value about equal to a single pane of glass and weighs 40 pounds a sheet, whereas 3/4 foam or fiberglass could be R4 or higher and weighs almost nothing. 30 sheets of 3/4 ply could add as much as 1200 pounds to a 40 foot Bus. Maybe not much to some, but should be considered as part of the overall "package". The outer walls of a Bus are quite strong, and as most noise will come up from the floor, and most heat will flow in or out through the walls and ceiling, I personally dont see the need for heavy plywood walls. 1/8 or 1/4 inch paneling or tongue and groove strip should be very solid. And while foam panels and spray are quite popular, once aged a few years its not a great deal better in R value than fiberglass.

  Interior walls do not need to be 4 inches thick. Wood or hollow steel 2/4's set sideways, would be more than sufficient. Running all electrical wire in conduit during the construction phase could help a great deal later on if there is any wiring issue.

  3 inches of fiberglass in the ceiling could give you R 15 plus. OTOH, foam might reach as high as R 21. The foil back insulation can add as much as R 2 to the insulation, not sure what an outer foil film, combined with an inner film would do.

  I personally have some strong concerns with any foam insulation in direct contact with steel framing and the foam filling of structural frame tubing. This was done on steel buildings years ago and is no longer recommended due to severe corrosion issues due to condensation. Any moisture that gets inside the wall will be trapped if the wall cannot breathe. By the time any damage is seen externally, the structure can be greatly compromised. Fiberglass may not be superior to foam in the short term, but after foam has aged 5 or more years it appears to become much more equal to fiberglass. That some of these Buses are still rolling down the road after 30, 40, and some 50 years old or more with fiberglass insulation should be duly noted. I do understand the sound issues though. My fear is that foam could do to Buses, what fiberglass epoxy did to wood boats in the 60's. Yes, if water gets fiberglass wet it can also cause rust, but I am speaking only about natural condensation, not water leakage.

  But hey, its your Bus, do it the way you want.
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« Reply #21 on: February 23, 2012, 12:09:40 PM »

  Grin
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« Reply #22 on: February 23, 2012, 06:52:17 PM »

See we brought up a old but common subject of heat transfer and condensation. Any thing you can do to keep moist air from getting to cold metal will help this condensation . Foil faced insulation helps give you a higher r factor with less thickness. Can't see where moisture would enter a filled cavity that is also insulated over also.:Anything is possible. More is better in the beginning in this case (insulation). Don't forget ceiling of bays-any area you can possibly get to.  Happy bussin  Bob-enjoying vacation at the Flywheelers.
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« Reply #23 on: February 24, 2012, 03:33:37 AM »

...what fiberglass epoxy did to wood boats in the 60's.

Curious to know what you're referring to by this. Possibly people sheathing wet wood with fibreglass and finding that it didn't work - but that's hardly the fault of the fibreglass. Incidentally, in the '60s few boatbuilders would have even heard of epoxy, and even today the vast majority of resins that are used with fibreglass in boats are polyester or vinylester resins, not epoxy. Epoxy resins are widely used in wooden boat construction, but that's as a timber adhesive and not associated with laminating fibreglass.


By the way, if anyone's interested, my bus has two interior walls - one's 3/4" plywood faced with veneered 4mm plywood, and the other one is constructed from a frame of 1" steel box section with 4mm plywood facings on both sides and foam filling the void in the middle. The reason for using steel for this wall is that it's curved - this wall is one end of the bathroom, and the shape of the wall is the mirror image of the shape of the quadrent shower enclosure that forms the other end of the bathroom. Creating the same curve using wood would have made the wall thicker than I wanted.

Jeremy
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« Reply #24 on: February 24, 2012, 07:16:38 AM »

...what fiberglass epoxy did to wood boats in the 60's.

Curious to know what you're referring to by this.
Jeremy

  The advent of fiberglass resin in the 50's spawned a whole era of new boat manufacturing and repair. Where wooden boats had always been stripped and refinished with high quality varnishes, fiberglass resin was being touted as the last coating you would ever have to put on your boat. Almost every wooden boat ever built or owned in North America was redone with fiberglass in the 50's and 60's, some quite beautifully. Many came out of factories brand new finished that way. It took well over 10 years before the problems were really getting attention, and by then it was already to late for many of the older classics.

  It didnt matter how dry the wood was when it was sealed, any moisture that got behind the resin stayed there, whether from water splashing inside the boat, or a scratch or blemish in the hull from a rock or dock strike. The wood couldnt breathe. From the outside of the hull, the resin looked hard and solid. From inside, the structure looked fine as well. But black spots began to appear under the outer finish. Soon blisters appeared. No big deal, strip the glass off and fix it, right?

  Wrong. By the time people saw problems that warranted major refinish work, there wasnt anything left to refinish. Not only would most of the outer hull wood be rotted, the rot generally had gone into all the lower framing members. Huge numbers of classic and very beautiful Chris Crafts and Hackers and various other wooden boats and yachts were left sitting out there existence in boat yards and back yards slowly rotting away. I saw many where the engines had fallen right through the hull after everything let go, so rotted you couldnt get the boat on a trailer without it crumbling away. They are gone. And a lot of the early all fiberglass boats are gone as well, because they used wood engine bunks and framing encased in fiberglass that sooner or later rotted away inside the cavity. This wasn't a fault with the fiberglass, its great stuff. It was simply that nobody knew exactly the correct way to use it because the problem had never been experienced. Even as the boats were rotting away in boat yards in the 70's, many boat shops continued to deny the problem had anything to do with glassing over the wood, and many continued doing it well into the late 70's and early 80's. If it hadnt been for the massive inflation of classic boat values in the late 80's and 90's, many of the older wooden boats would likely have winked out of existence.

  I think its really neat to see people trying to preserve what few remain. My ex Brother in Law has been trying to restore a 24 foot '51 Hacker Craft for about 10 years, says he's replaced nearly 70% of the wood and hopes to get her out this summer.

  I'm not trying to make something out of nothing, just hoping we dont do that same thing to Buses through some technology we havnt the long term knowledge and experience to know how it will react.
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« Reply #25 on: February 24, 2012, 07:35:04 AM »

I suspect you've re-written the history of boatbuilding there. Fibreglass sheathing is an entirely satisfactory process and not some mistake which ruined boats for decades. And talking about scratches letting water in, or 'black sports appearing under the outer finish' suggests that you're confusing fibreglass sheathing - which is a tough, thick and opaque layer - with varnish or lacquer.

It is possible that in the early days fibreglass resin (without fibreglass) was touted as some sort of permanent replacement for varnish, but this would be a different application to fibreglass sheathing; either way, suggesting that serried ranks of classic boats crumbled into nothingness as a result of fibreglass being applied to them is imaginative exaggeration.

Jeremy
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« Reply #26 on: February 24, 2012, 07:46:41 AM »

I do believe Paul is right, but that's boats not buses.
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« Reply #27 on: February 24, 2012, 08:00:07 AM »

Yeah, maybe he is. I was a professional boatbuilder in a previous life, but who knows how those epoxy fumes have affected me


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« Reply #28 on: February 24, 2012, 08:35:57 AM »

I have seen fiberglass boats that have used plywood as the core material turn into fiberglass bags.
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« Reply #29 on: February 24, 2012, 09:09:40 AM »

I suspect you've re-written the history of boatbuilding there. Fibreglass sheathing is an entirely satisfactory process and not some mistake which ruined boats for decades. And talking about scratches letting water in, or 'black sports appearing under the outer finish' suggests that you're confusing fibreglass sheathing - which is a tough, thick and opaque layer - with varnish or lacquer.

It is possible that in the early days fibreglass resin (without fibreglass) was touted as some sort of permanent replacement for varnish, but this would be a different application to fibreglass sheathing; either way, suggesting that serried ranks of classic boats crumbled into nothingness as a result of fibreglass being applied to them is imaginative exaggeration.

Jeremy

  Dude, I am not confused about anything. I lived in the land of 14,000 lakes for over 50 years and have bought, sold, owned and worked on boats all my life. Chris Craft Boats were built on Lake Minnetonka in Wayzata Minnesota were my Father grew up. There were at one time, 100's of boat manufactures in Minnesota, Minnesota has the highest number of boat owners per capita in the world, approx one boat for every 7 Minnesotans. Many people who live on or near lakes have more than one boat. I can assure you, knowledge of wood boats in Minnesota is as high, and likely higher than anywhere in the world, and old wood boats have dissolved like clouds on a windy day. Not from natural rot and decay, but from covering the damn things with fiberglass. Every wood boat shop I ever knew was talking about this 40 years ago when I was a kid, if you never heard of it you likely dont know anything about the subject. All the High Schools had kids building wood boats when I was growing up. Often beautiful Cedar Strip Canoes, then covering them with cloth and resin. If you dont believe that will destroy a boat in short order, you simply havnt seen it or been around it.

  I have been in many boat yards in Minnesota, some filled with 100's of old wooden boats that will never, ever see the water. There are, and were, really old boats from the the 1800's through the 1940's and 50's, from little row boats to 40 plus foot Yachts, that survived for decades with normal and occasional refinishing and maintenance, that simply dissolved once encased in Fiberglass, and disappeared. I actually witnessed a neighbor fiberglass his Grandfathers old wood row boat, a boat built well before WW2, in around 1969. By the time I started driving in 1974, the boat was completely ruined, the entire bottom nothing but rotted goo. I should probably also add that there were several guys up there who had full time jobs replacing wood transoms in fiberglass boats, for all the same reasons.

  I dont know why you always come across like you think im stupid or making things up, but its becoming rather tiring, Jeremy.

  
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« Reply #30 on: February 24, 2012, 09:50:39 AM »

Apologies to everyone else for leading this off-topic - last comment from me in this thread

Artvonne:

Just to clarify - yes, in some circumstance wood can rot under fibreglass, especially if it's wrongly applied to old (wet) boats - just as I said in my very first post in fact. This probably has some relevance to the original discussion about walls in buses, so was a point worth mentioning. Where you went wrong was in your follow-up which included a variety of incorrect statements about the subject - this is what annoyed me I suppose, because it is an area which I know a little bit about. I expect TomC or Luvrbus get equally annoyed when people confidently make incorrect statements about engines, or Sean with regard to electrics.

Apologies if I upset anyone as a consequence; I hope I don't have any particular 'attitude' to anyone on the board, but I am aware that you may feel there's some history because of the lengthy earlier thread in which I didn't quite agree with your thoughts about need to modify our buses to protect ourselves from EMP bursts. (BTW. Any more intel. for us on that 'imminent' Chinese attack?)

Jeremy
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