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Author Topic: Skinning. Tell me why I should or shouldn't please.  (Read 1331 times)
wdtjawshwdt
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« on: April 05, 2014, 08:19:30 PM »

I was fortunate enough to get a deal on .09 aluminum sheet.   They are 5x10 sheets and I have four of them.   This is for the MC9.   Now the predicament is....I have the options to do 8 windows and just use the sheets as they are no cutting or 10 windows with  waste.   I don't really care how many windows I have.   I have 5 large RV windows that will be going in this project.   I need swaying one way or the other.      

diagram time that may not make sense
XX=1 window
[_]=1 window

8 window option is a 4 sheet option  
                                                                              __________________
each side would lose these windows  driver/passenger    [] [_]XXXX[_]XXXX[_] \  
                                                                             l'-O------------------OO l
10 window option is cutting it down to 10 sheets

Blocking out all the middle windows leaving the front and rears on both sides
                                                                             __________________
                                                                            [] [_]XXXXXXXXXX[_] \
                                                                            l'-O-----------------OO- l

Well my busses turned out pretty good for typing them out...took me way to long to do this guys
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Josh
1981 MC9 6v92DD 5 speed fuller
RIP 1996 Amtran dt444e

Farmington MN
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« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2014, 09:21:52 PM »

I like light and and I feel it gives conversions a more open feel vs. a dark cave. So I am for option one. On old classic buses I like all of the windows left in it even if they are blocked internally. Vintage, classic, cool....
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L. Christley - W3EYE Amateur Extra
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wdtjawshwdt
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« Reply #2 on: April 05, 2014, 09:56:56 PM »

I became jaded on the windows...because right now i have spent the past 2 weekends welding structure back into place.   Sooo I am a little bitter and getting rid of some of them...they are leaky bastards I tell ya.
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Josh
1981 MC9 6v92DD 5 speed fuller
RIP 1996 Amtran dt444e

Farmington MN
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« Reply #3 on: April 06, 2014, 05:34:22 AM »

If I were going to skin the sides on an MC-9 it would be an all or nothing deal.  No OEM windows left at all, just RV windows.  So I would buy another sheet of aluminium and do it all, then install my RV windows with appropriate framing where I wanted them.  090" is a great choice, and you can cut it wasily on a regular table saw with a wood blade, just have a helper, ear protection and a face mask, not just goggles.

Brian

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1980 MCI MC-5C, 8V-71T from a M-110 self propelled howitzer
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« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2014, 07:20:41 AM »

If I were going to skin the sides on an MC-9 it would be an all or nothing deal.  No OEM windows left at all, just RV windows.  So I would buy another sheet of aluminium and do it all, then install my RV windows with appropriate framing where I wanted them.  090" is a great choice, and you can cut it wasily on a regular table saw with a wood blade, just have a helper, ear protection and a face mask, not just goggles.

Brian



ditto. if you're ever considering living in it full-time, you'll hate yourself for keeping the old glass. Single pane, leaky, and hot in the summer, cold and condensation in the winter. Our coach is purpose-built to withstand temperature extremes and it does this well. We've seen -18 this past winter with wind chills well below that, and the coach has seen 105 two summers ago. 1 rooftop a/c, three space heaters inside...shes good.
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Scott & Heather
1984 MCI9 6V92-turbo with 9 inch roof raise & conversion in progress.
http://www.scottmichaelbennett.com/p/our-bus.html
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« Reply #5 on: April 06, 2014, 09:00:23 AM »

Commercial trailers typically use .030 aluminum skin. With that in mind, I had my truck skinned in .060. .090 is really thick-do you want to be carrying that extra weight all the time? Good luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
wdtjawshwdt
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« Reply #6 on: April 06, 2014, 09:04:26 AM »

I feel like I want to keep two windows one front and one back to get stuff in and out.   :-p   But you guys are getting me to lean towards getting two more sheets $95 a piece isn't bad just didn't expect to spend that much on the outside.  I am rebuilding walls with bed frame and pallet racking now.    So take larger sheets and cover the windows.  Dont bother cutting the large sheets into 5x3 sections and covering each window individually?





« Last Edit: April 06, 2014, 10:00:34 AM by wdtjawshwdt » Logged

Josh
1981 MC9 6v92DD 5 speed fuller
RIP 1996 Amtran dt444e

Farmington MN
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« Reply #7 on: April 06, 2014, 09:25:00 AM »

To fill in the windows, I cut two 3/4" plywood to fill in the window glued together which brought the level of the plywood even with the outside skin of the bus. Then used .030" aluminum skin glued and riveted over. Works well (for the last 20yrs) and looks good. Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
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« Reply #8 on: April 06, 2014, 12:41:13 PM »

.090" is what I seem to recall the stock aluminium sides and roof of an MCI is.  They used a heat-treated aluminium, not full hard but around a T-4, I think.  I can't recall where I read that.

Brian
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1980 MCI MC-5C, 8V-71T from a M-110 self propelled howitzer
Spicer 8844 4 speed Zen meditation device
Vintage race cars -
1978 Lola T440 Formula Ford
1972 NTM MK-4 B/SR
wdtjawshwdt
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« Reply #9 on: April 06, 2014, 01:18:56 PM »

The skinning thing seems like a trick.   Many options from the research on the forum and it sounds like most people went with thicker is better (or wished they went thicker) for the aluminum. The other is people wished they would have used  a large single piece of aluminum per side (out of my price range).   The larger the piece of aluminum the more structural it will be.     This has probably been the hardest decision since starting this project.   Everything else has been reactionary. 

With the thickness of the aluminum i am using should I back it with plywood like Tom C?


Many different ways to skin a cat.
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Josh
1981 MC9 6v92DD 5 speed fuller
RIP 1996 Amtran dt444e

Farmington MN
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« Reply #10 on: April 06, 2014, 02:17:22 PM »

That little bit of wight is negligible, the heavier the sheet, the less wave (oil-canning) you'll have from the heat.  Put it on in hot weather with direct sunlight, and if possible use a LP weed burner inside.  Use some kind of protection between the steel and the aluminum.  Not a bad job.  Did mine with two boys and myself.  Did it all in two days with more rivets than I can remember.  Bought an air rivet gun from Harbor Freight.  Cheap, fast and done right.  Buy some welding gloves, some vice grips, and lots of ice water.

Windows depends on weather.  I wish I had double pane because I wish I could stay up north in the winter like Scott.  I'm envious of his set up.  But, if you plan to be in hot or mild locations, and you have good AC, then the stock windows might be fine.  The slider aftermarket windows are $$$.

Spray Foam - I didn't have any money (Still don't), but I found a way to do some horse trading for a truck mounted spray foam project.  No regrets.  I can't tell you how many  times I said "I'm glad I did that right".   Not like you can go back and do that again.  (Besides, I didn't need that horse in my bus anyway!  Grin )

Everyone that comes in our bus says it has a lot of light and they always seem to like it.  You can see pics of the inside at:  http://dave-amy.com/bus-tour,-april-2014.html

Good luck on the project
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I couldn't repair my brakes, so I made my horn louder.
1989 MCI-102 A3
DD 6V92 Turbo, Alison
Tons of stuff to learn!
Started in Cheboygan, Michigan (near the Mackinaw Bridge).  Now home is anywhere we park
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« Reply #11 on: April 06, 2014, 02:52:23 PM »

Aluminum will wave like old glory with heat steel is by far the best for no waves
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« Reply #12 on: April 06, 2014, 02:53:58 PM »

Aluminum will wave like old glory with heat steel is by far the best for no waves

I have so few opportunities to disagree with luvrbus that I thought I should jump at the chance.  My aluminum hasn't waved a bit.  I heated when it went on, and did it on a hot day.  No problems.

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I couldn't repair my brakes, so I made my horn louder.
1989 MCI-102 A3
DD 6V92 Turbo, Alison
Tons of stuff to learn!
Started in Cheboygan, Michigan (near the Mackinaw Bridge).  Now home is anywhere we park
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« Reply #13 on: April 06, 2014, 03:10:30 PM »

Come to Az and watch it wave lol your bus is white and not as noticeable.I skinned the Eagle with 1 piece of steel from front to rear with no rivets it all depends on what you are looking for in the finished product I wanted no rivets   
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gumpy
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« Reply #14 on: April 06, 2014, 05:24:35 PM »

....    just didn't expect to spend that much on the outside.

HaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHa !!!!!!!!!!!!   Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy



Oh sorry, was that out loud?
« Last Edit: April 06, 2014, 05:26:39 PM by gumpy » Logged

Craig Shepard
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http://bus.gumpydog.com - "Some Assembly Required"
wdtjawshwdt
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« Reply #15 on: April 06, 2014, 06:48:20 PM »

Lol Gumpy well it is true...i didn't expect it... Seems like there are a lot of guys from minnesota that have done these conversions...if any of you are bored and need something to do on a weekend...  Grin
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Josh
1981 MC9 6v92DD 5 speed fuller
RIP 1996 Amtran dt444e

Farmington MN
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« Reply #16 on: April 06, 2014, 07:13:30 PM »

Three energetic bodies.  That's all you need.  Not a huge job, just take your time and buy a couple dozen high quality drill bits.  Really, there are bigger jobs on the bus - like removing the stock bathroom.
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I couldn't repair my brakes, so I made my horn louder.
1989 MCI-102 A3
DD 6V92 Turbo, Alison
Tons of stuff to learn!
Started in Cheboygan, Michigan (near the Mackinaw Bridge).  Now home is anywhere we park
wdtjawshwdt
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« Reply #17 on: April 06, 2014, 08:47:08 PM »

Tikvah I love the window latches in the construction portion of your video.   Brilliant.   I did buy lower cabinets and I forklifted them in.  Said the same thing as you, I will just take it easy when I drive the bus into the shop....well the drawers were on the floor it was pretty aggressive.

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Josh
1981 MC9 6v92DD 5 speed fuller
RIP 1996 Amtran dt444e

Farmington MN
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« Reply #18 on: April 07, 2014, 04:30:37 AM »

Cliff is a genius in my 31 year old opinion, so this isn't to contradict him, just sharing my experience. We bought 1/8" thick aluminum sheet and installed it on a hot summer day. It has never waved on us even at 105 degrees. That being said, a trip to AZ in the summer might change that but for 90% of where we travel and the temps we see, it has never gotten wavy. And the Fiberglas or filon skinned RV's we pass by everyday are super super wavy so I think we are fine. The thicker aluminum helps. And don't worry about the extra weight. It's negligible. Our coach fully kitted out only weighs 32,000 lbs


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk. Clumsy fingers may contribute to mistakes.
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Scott & Heather
1984 MCI9 6V92-turbo with 9 inch roof raise & conversion in progress.
http://www.scottmichaelbennett.com/p/our-bus.html
˙ǝɯoɔlǝʍ suoıʇɐuop ˙snq ʍǝu ɐ pǝǝu ʎlqɐqoɹd ll,ǝʍ 'sıɥʇ pɐǝɹ uɐɔ noʎ ɟı
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« Reply #19 on: April 07, 2014, 05:52:11 AM »

Lol I don't how you guys do it the thermal expansion of aluminum is almost 2 times that of steel maybe small sections and plenty of rivets is the key

Boomer who owns one of the best looking Eagles on the planet did the whole sides of his Eagle with just one piece of aluminum and he is one for perfection his bus has waves on a hot day

 Fiberglass unless you do like the builders of Prevost and MCI which use carbon fibers is the worst one can use. Some where on this board Jim the RV-Safety guy posted the numbers for the thermal expansion coefficients of all 3 materials steel won hands downs

good luck
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Tikvah
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« Reply #20 on: April 07, 2014, 07:50:32 AM »

When I did my bus, you almost had me convinced to do steel.  I like a lot of the "Pros" like:
No rivets - smooth side
Simple weld on - no pre-heat
work the metal just like automotive body work
No warp

But, there are some "Cons" too.
Heavy
Potential rust
Heavy
Weld spots visible from outside (lots of sanding)

But, there are some nice "Pros" to the aluminum
Easy to handle
Easy to form and cut
Light weight
Same look and material as the bus builders used
"Everyone Else is doing it"

The "Con" of aluminum is limited only to the potential of waving.  And if installed hot, and we stay out of AZ, that should'nt be a problem.

Also, be sure (this could be a pro for steel), that you protect your steel structure from the aluminum.

Quote
Cliff is a genius in my 31 year old opinion, so this isn't to contradict him, just sharing my experience

I'm with Scott - this is a rare experience, so I'm having fun!   Grin

One additional thought:  If I was replacing the lower aluminum, and the aluminum around the windows, then I think the smooth side steel might be the way to go.  You could spot weld the whole thing and even smooth seams if necessary (just like auto body work).  Hmmm, maybe I should have done that...
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I couldn't repair my brakes, so I made my horn louder.
1989 MCI-102 A3
DD 6V92 Turbo, Alison
Tons of stuff to learn!
Started in Cheboygan, Michigan (near the Mackinaw Bridge).  Now home is anywhere we park
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« Reply #21 on: April 07, 2014, 08:01:47 AM »

MCI bus is already skinned with aluminium above the belt line, so adding a little more won't hurt.  The stock aluminium is thick and doesn't warp, the roof skin doesn't warp, so I guess the thermal expansion isn't that much of an issue.  The thick skin is pretty much the trick.

Brian
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1980 MCI MC-5C, 8V-71T from a M-110 self propelled howitzer
Spicer 8844 4 speed Zen meditation device
Vintage race cars -
1978 Lola T440 Formula Ford
1972 NTM MK-4 B/SR
luvrbus
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« Reply #22 on: April 07, 2014, 08:18:24 AM »

Lol look at all rivets Brian and the roof is in sections with a double row of rivets, GM are all aluminum they have a rivet ever 2 inches and still wave 

If aluminum is easier for the guys so be it as they own the bus my MCI 8 was skinned with steel from the converter fwiw     
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