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Author Topic: skinning process question  (Read 1255 times)
travelingfools
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« on: May 02, 2008, 09:55:43 AM »

After taking in all the advice Ive recieved, Im going to skin with .080, rivit the top and sides and use Sikaflex on any other surface I can. My thoughts on the actual attaching is to put my "glue" down, rivet each upper corner, then heat and rivet as I go along.. Thoughts, comments concerns ?
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John P, Lewiston NY   1987 MC 9 ...ex NJT
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« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2008, 10:05:54 AM »

If you rivet the upper corners as you work from one end of sheet you will "bubble" the sheet, it needs to be free to expand. Adhesives specify a thickness they need to be applied at to be effective. If you apply adhesive where you rivet, the adhesive is squeezed out and is useless!!!! Do you mean rivet top, sides and bottom?
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« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2008, 11:16:49 AM »

jjrbus is correct doing your fastening at each corner will bubble the panel.....I started at the rear of the bus and moved forward. On the bottom row of siding I used all Sika following their instructions to the "T", cleaning, primer and using the tile spacers for ceramic tile (1/8") that gives you the bond for the correct thickness of your Sika( factory recommendations ).  I also used 2x4 studs with clamps to keep from warping the skins I only snugged them ever so lightly!

On the bottom two rows where for some reason the panel would not pull in to comform with the rest of the panel I used a rivet to pull it in to match the rest of the panel, I will later drill that rivet out and fill the hole and bondo to cosmetically repair the hole!

On my upper panels (i have a prevost lemirage and the top panel is curved in towards the top).  On these panels I used a different method ( they tended to slip as I tightened my 2" ratcheting cargo straps to pull the curved section down to meet the chassis steel), here I overlapped the panels from side to side about 3", using Sika on all four sides of each panel (top, bottom and both sides) at the top I used 3/16ths shave head gasketed rivets, first one starting at the rear, moving towards the front until I riveted the whole panel (no bubbles).  Then using 3, 2" cargo straps one at each chassis point behind the panel and pulled them down until they matched the chassis curve.......I put 4x4 posts (horizontally) under the straps to make sure I pulled the panel down evenly. My cargo straps were fairly cheap at Lowe's and they were perfect length to go totally over the bus to the bottom of each baggage compartment on both sides of the bus. Sika recomments 50F as the lowest temp to use their product, when it was cold out I heated the panels, being summer and one more side to finish  I probably won't heat the panels its getting pretty hot out now!  I left my straps on over nite removing them the next morning, slow work takes time, there is no hurry!  One thing I have noticed about Sika you can cut a panel off with a razor blade, but if you try to pull the panel off without cutting the sika......"forget it"!  It's tough stuff!  On my side panels I left a 1/4 space between each panel to allow for thermal expansion of the alum panels, they have backing plates and there is a 1" alum trim piece to cover the gaps.

My bus is a smooth skin bus, I priced the polished stainless, and decided that was more than I was willing to fork out for.......this summer will tell if this worked or not, I won't have it painted until this fall..........i want to see what moves before spending that last $12, or 15k for the paint!  If your thinking why paint the smooth sides and spend that much when you could have had the polished stainless, try $30k for the stainless....with the aluminum and paint i'm still under by $20k or somewhere abouts, remember I still had to paint the top half even if I used stainless!

Don't get in a hurry and don't panic you have about 30 minutes to work each panel before the Sika decideds to set!

Good luck!  If you need to see what I'm talking about there are some current pictures on the site at the bottom of this post!   
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travelingfools
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« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2008, 12:12:18 PM »

If you rivet the upper corners as you work from one end of sheet you will "bubble" the sheet, it needs to be free to expand. Adhesives specify a thickness they need to be applied at to be effective. If you apply adhesive where you rivet, the adhesive is squeezed out and is useless!!!! Do you mean rivet top, sides and bottom?


Point taken...Starting on one end and moving across with the heat and rivets. Im only going to rivit the tops and sides as the rivets will end up under the original moldings. The bottom will only be glued so there will be no visable rivets on my upper panel. I've no plans to glue under the rivets...

My alum is ordered..gonna take 10 days...I can't wait !!!!
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John P, Lewiston NY   1987 MC 9 ...ex NJT
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« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2008, 12:16:07 PM »

Hay TF,

Just lay the bus over on it's side  Shocked will make the job much easier!  Grin

Have a great Day
Nick-
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« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2008, 12:23:05 PM »

TF - I believe the process is start at the middle and work to the ends? - JMO -
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« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2008, 12:30:01 PM »

Hay TF,

Just lay the bus over on it's side  Shocked will make the job much easier!  Grin

Have a great Day
Nick-

If it was only that easy...lol
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John P, Lewiston NY   1987 MC 9 ...ex NJT
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« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2008, 04:19:53 PM »

 Not being a sheet metal expert this is only a guess but if you heat the sheeting and rivet it on the top and sides you will end up with a big mess!!!! With my limited experience installing siding, I doubt you wil even get the first sheet on. As the sheet cools  the bottom will draw up and the center of the sheet will bow out!!!!!! Or maybe in.
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travelingfools
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« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2008, 04:29:00 PM »

Not being a sheet metal expert this is only a guess but if you heat the sheeting and rivet it on the top and sides you will end up with a big mess!!!! With my limited experience installing siding, I doubt you wil even get the first sheet on. As the sheet cools  the bottom will draw up and the center of the sheet will bow out!!!!!! Or maybe in.

Soooooo...getting back to my original question....
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John P, Lewiston NY   1987 MC 9 ...ex NJT
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« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2008, 04:51:10 AM »


Point taken...Starting on one end and moving across with the heat and rivets. Im only going to rivit the tops and sides as the rivets will end up under the original moldings. The bottom will only be glued so there will be no visable rivets on my upper panel. I've no plans to glue under the rivets...

HuhHuh??
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