You got that absolutely right. I find that the screws (when extracted) tell an interesting story. I have a whole work-up on samples of screws extracted (heavily illustrated photos), where the screws rusted badly, and what materials the screws were living in when the rust occurred.
Typically, where the screws penetrated the aluminum, the length of crew INSIDE the aluminum was shiny/new. In a few cases, the screw section inside the aluminum was rusting (was there water running through the aluminum tube frame intermittently at some time?)...
Nice to be able to do material "forensics" as you dis-assemble...
I believe that our camper is now indeed quite a bit better than new !
....thanks Victory. As I wrote to Sleepy & Sabconsulting (we corresponded through this entire process), this project was a real character builder; I nearly gave up on RVs & RVing entirely, from disappointment/discouragement ;)
Well, our Caribou under-wing rot and under-tub re-build is virtually finished. T'was a long and hard project (~80 hours), but she's much better than new now. Its now a keeper :B
....there were 2 areas of under-wing rot; this was the region under the propane tank. The other area was at rear corner, under the steel batter box insert (a much larger rotter area, repaired in the same manner as this illustrated area):
While I was at it, the 2 roof-top vents were re-done, stripped the caulking, inserted new stainless screws where others had completely rusted, bedded everything properly, etc...AND, I pulled EVERY externally visible camper screw (a huge quantity of them; tub, camper walls, jacks, cabover and softwall-to-trim wall screws), and replaced EVERY ONE with stainless-steel (properly bedded in sealant: that was a brutal job, too). Entire roof was re caulked, as was all the camper wall seams and cabover seams. Thank our lucky stars that this camper has a full aluminum frame; for if it didn't, and frame would have been wood, I fear the entire camper would have needed a near total tear-down and re-build :E
....now, we can get back to camping again for another ~9 years we hope with this camper, thank goodness!
Know folks who will not go to Canada because they cannot take a sidearm
...I don't know of a single country on Earth that "a traveler" could bring a side-arm into (that includes the USA !).
Why in the devil would ANY country ANYWHERE allow you to bring a non-hunting weapon (ie. a side arm) into it's territory (unless you are invited law enforcement or military with special permission) ?
Banks safety deposit boxes to store weapons:
....does anyone see an issue carrying a side arm into a bank (concealed) with gun-detecting sensors to superstitiously deposit said into a safety deposit box?
...just trying to keep ya out of trouble. Back to the program...
....after all the repairs I discovered that had to be done on our pop-up, I bit the bullet and we're keeping the aluminum-framed nearly 7 feet of head-room (when roof is up), and 4 very large glass windows, and an astounding 10 soft-wall windows completely around the camper's perimeter, giving us 360 Deg of viewing; we couldn't find but 2 reasons to sell and buy a hard-side truck camper (one: was a full wet bath; the other was: outside storage during our brutally harsh winter).
We're keeping the Outfitter, saving $20 or $30 grand for a hard-side (even with trade-in) and loving the adventurous life to hard-to-reach places, with relatively good fuel mileage, and a robust 4x4 system, fully detachable from the camper when need-be (I re-discovered using the 2500HD long-bed for all kinds of "chores" and fun this summer with camper unloaded). What's also great about our compact "rig", is that we can park it at the rented "condo" in Florida (during winter, no HOA nonsense), and use it for 2~7 day adventures down to the Keys, or into the interior, then return back "home" to luxury, until the next short "expedition" !
As an earlier Poster wrote, Fraserway RV Canada rents truck campers (actually, the entire rig, truck and all). You could "rent" an integral truck camper rig in Whitehorse (if you want to plan a northern expedition/try-out before buying), Vancouver area, Calgary, Toronto, and Halifax. No matter where you are living in the US, a location is relatively close to most of the US. We used to have a rental locale n Montreal, however, it appears to have been closed.
Good luck, read all the comments on all aspects (negative & positive) of truck camper ownership, and perhaps you'll do it :)
....I've just finished 2 coats of topside marine enamel on the repaired under-wings and complete tub area. I had to pack it in 40 minutes ago, as massive and sustained rains are moving in to our region (4 inches or more to fall in a few hours).
I also re-hung all the plastic skirting in anticipation the above. I thought I would have squeezed out another 4 hours of work on the camper today, but with this horrid rainy summer, 3.5 days is the longest run of sun we've had since April :E
I'll be back at it next Monday (when we are supposed to get ~2 days sans rain...I hope :B
I found some RV rain gutter extensions on the Net: here--> They may save you some design/fabrication time.
I may look for some high-strength plastic gutter strips, and will attempt to glue them to my aluminum roof fascia with marine adhesive (and try extensions, too) ...hmmm?
Combine this with the gutter is situated that the roof water drains directly on top of the head of the jack causing a lot of water spray...
....this is the process that almost killed our Outfitter Caribou: water waterfalling off the roof (at all 4 corners equally, and we have no eaves troughs, unlike you !), and landing directly on top of the HappiJac jack caps, then fire-hosing the side of our camper (and all the near-by hatches, trim, screws, door seams, windows!). The waterfall deflection I'M SURE is what is leading to the eventual destruction of every truck camper out there on the road today (at least the campers residing in the East and West coast rain-forests! Not so for campers living in the Southwest deserts, happily).
Happijac, Torklift, Attwood:
I WOULD BUY in a New York minute a set of plastic push-fit water deflector attachments (shaped like small pyramids, that hug the camper's side-walls should do the trick!) to put over each of the 4 jack caps (you can design these deflector caps in 45 minutes with Autocad, and output a prototype to a 3D printer, for sourcing !)
Are you listening Torklift? Happijac? Attwood?
These seemingly stupid little "deflector" caps for jacks could save your camper from CERTAIN water destruction. Gutters on Truck Campers are useless, as the water just cascades down onto the jack caps, and kills your camper over just a few years.
Camper Jeff: glad you brought this up! I've been working days and days on repairing the Outfitter Caribou water damaged under-wings, and should be finished in ~14 hours or so (2 more days). I am currently taping "plastic skirts" over the 4 jacks to the camper side-walls, to avoid water cascading down from the roof onto them, creating the destruction. A bloody ugly fix, but what else can be done ??
The tape I got from amazon sure looked like the real deal though. had the literature, website addresses, etc
Could this stuff have been stale-dated ?? I OFTEN find stale-dated caulking being sold in the 4 hardware stores I buy building materials from. I am not shy, and will bring an arm-full of stale-dated caulking to the store manager, and ask. "what's up dude?"
I don't know f this situation is pure incompetence, or if it is deliberate.
Why not order the Eternabond directly from the manufacturer? This will avoid any chance of the stuff being a Chinese knock-off, or being stale-dated.
The option is putting stale-dated or Chinese knock-off sealants on your RV (unknowingly), and your RV being destroyed by water infiltration perhaps unnoticed, because the product isn't performing per spec.
....when you say, "acrylic paint", is this some brand of marine spar varnish? Or, water sealant paint (like deck coating) ?
I'm waffling between coating the new under-wing plywood sheeting (all 6 sides) with 4~6 coatings of marine spar varnish, or boat hull paint (black color). The boat hull coating is fairly expensive, however (about $112 to coat both 8-foot replacement plywood sheets twice)...
....there are appx 160 listed pre-owned (used) truck campers for sale in the State of California NOT listed on Craig's List or E-Bay (these are only on the commercial rv trading websites)...quickly, I found ~8 in California listed under $4990 on one website alone.
LOTS of used inventory out there....lots.
With all the illegals coming in and a virtually non existent border, I doubt you'll be noticed.
...if you are driving a "plated vehicle" over the US border (not humping it into the USA illegally from Mexico with a backpack), that vehicle (whether you are driving it, or someone else is) will be tracked. My understanding is that there are thousands (or, tens of thousands) of license plate tracking cameras mounted at overpasses, and in towns and cities all across the USA (and, Canada), that record, and plot every license plate that cross the scanner, (potentially) generating a time/date/route event. Again, this I understand from reading professional Geo-spatial journals in my field of endeavor.
...so,if you extrapolate the possible queries made on your vehicle from such an alleged network of national scanners (ie. you tell Customs you are going be in the USA for 21 days to visit in Texas, but you never actually go there, instead, arriving to Los Angeles, and leaving the USA by automobile into Canada in 36 days)..a red flag event....you get the picture.
...also before if we flew home over Christmas we were still considered in the US, with the new ability to access records will we still have to count our time home at Christmas as still being in the states...
...my understanding of this is yes, you will continue to be considered "in the US" even if you leave to return to Canada for Christmas. The concept is thus: if you (as a Canadian) make frequent trips to the US over the/a period considered to be a year, US customs may/will consider you to have closer ties to the US than to Canada, and will fill in the short "gaps" that you have returned during, and rack up the entire period as one long visit.
Remember, the US considers ALL visitors as: "presumed to be intending immigrants", and the onus is on the visitor to PROVE "clear and convincing evidence that they do not intend to abandon their home country". So, US customs can absolutely refuse you (the Canadian) entry if you are "a frequent crosser" even though you have physically only been n the US for say, 100 days in a deemed year.
This is in MHO, after researching this topic vigorously over the past 3 years. I am not an immigration lawyer. See an immigration lawyer to verify this with subtleties, and do your own due diligence.
My solution... I sealed the drain holes.
....this is the only way to keep rain from being blasted in through those weep holes. I don't recall any RV I've ever looked at not having weep holes through to the inside of the camper (exception: the new Euro-style Lexan hatch-style windows sometimes an option; and a few non-opening door and view windows).
When we had stored our camper outdoors over last winter (for the 1st time), I anticipated near-hurricane force monster snowstorms pounding all the windows of our camper over the 7 months of winter up here (14 of these storms in total over last winter). So, bought a tube of weather-sealant caulking, and filled every weep hole with the stuff (the material is crystal clear);min spring, I just peeled it off the weep holes (in less than 15 minutes), and no issues.
You could use this easily removable stuff to block the weep holes in your existing bulk-head window, whenever you are on the road (or, why not permanently?).
"The Atwood Aftermarket Window Group manufactures replacement and custom windows for most types of Recreational or Specialty Vehicles. With over 30 years of experience as a leading manufacturer of recreational vehicle windows, we are dedicated to servicing your wholesale and retail RV window needs by offering a wide array of window products to the aftermarket. Regardless of the brand of window in your current RV, we can help you affordably find a window that fits your needs."
....how to measure for a new window here-->
If this route were ever to be considered the fares would have to be more in the range of $1000 - $1200 each way for a medium size RV.
....the ~$350 return is for passenger only; the $95 one way is for a "car"...no RV pricing was given in the correspondence. I speculate that RV and truck pricing will cost out: per foot (compare the volume of a Class C per foot to a Hyundai car: about 3.5 vol/ft x).
I speculate that an appropriate "ship" will be acquired for the destination port. I imagine that it isn't inconceivable that a "new ship" is being completed. I can't imagine anyone doing a "cost analysis" without knowing the passenger/cargo/vehicle capacity of the ship (unless there is some kind of magic/alchemy is involved in this attempt?).
I can't imagine a vehicle/passenger ferry service funding an infrastructure "upgrade" to a Mexican port...
Over the history of this group's endeavors to "establish" a ferry service from Gulf of Mexico to Yucatan Peninsula, this is the first time that "they" have announced the sale of tickets?
....it appears (from my correspondence with Bruce Nierenberg Chairman, CEO and Tamara Magnusson, today), that the long-awaited RV/car/passenger/cargo ferry service from Gulf of Mexico area to the Yucatan wll start taking bookings this October for April sailing.
Return passage "...including a cabin and all food and entertainment on board to start at $350 round trip..." Cars will be ~~$95 one way. A 1000-LB capacity storage locker in the $95 range.
Ports are yet to be confirmed (Merida? Chetumal? Campeche? US: Tampa? Texas coast?).
*I have no financial or fiduciary interest(s) in this ferry service, nor in related Corporations
DC voltage flows through skin in a complex way (some may "sense" the flow, others may not: there is an academic discipline specializing specifically in this genre of research). DC can kill you under the right conditions (it is far more dangerous than AC; even in very low voltage situations). I believe DC electrical design safety is based on a 40VDC threshold; think this should be revised down considerably.
....there exists something called: RV hot skin. This condition (when camper is plugged into AC, among other scenarios) causes the camper "skin" and any camper metal (like door frames, metal stairs and anything metal connected to camper ground) to go electrically live.
This isn't something to ignore. Under the right conditions, it could kill ANY warm-blooded animal (human, dog, cat, anything) in seconds.
It is recommended that virtually every camper should be tested every time it is taken out, for this condition.
This is too complicated to go into in this Post. Have a read here-->