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Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers

 > Patch or Repair underbelly skin

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GMC Captiva

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Posted: 02/20/11 12:57pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

On my 1997 Jayco I need to cut back the black tarp type underbelly skin to get access to something. My question is this, How do I go about taping it or re sealing it back where I have to make the cut. Thanks

skipnchar

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Posted: 02/20/11 02:08pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Good place for eternabond tape if yours has the coroplast as most do. May not work if it's actually fabric though.


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MackinawMan

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Posted: 02/20/11 03:55pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Our Eagle has a black "plastic-like" covering as the underbelly skin.

When we purchased it last spring (as a 2 year old TT) I quickly realized that it had a mouse (or mice) in it before we had it. Consequently as part of the cleanup (which was as thorough as possible) I also got into the underbelly to inspect there.

Long story short, it had two "access panels" previously cut into it, and in spots where the panel could be screwed into frame rails, or frame crossmember rails, etc. to keep them in place (especially during transit).

Well, I wanted a third access panel between the dual axles in order to be able to access some key things underneath. However, this spot had no frame rails, or crossmember rails, etc. to screw into. So I put a strip of wood on two sides of the panel that I screwed into. It was lightweight but durable. I basically created a "frame" around the panel.

I then used the Gorilla tape previously mentioned to tape it.

FWIW


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Posted: 02/20/11 02:21pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Gorilla duct tape has been on the underbelly of mine for three years and shows no sign of separation. Clean well first.


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Verne

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Posted: 02/20/11 02:39pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Our Jayco has coroplast and like CANEY, I've used Gorilla Tape. It's been wet, frozen, etc. and still holding fine, but can be easily pulled off to re-access the bowels of the TT


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Posted: 02/20/11 02:52pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you are talking about the fabric, the best repair is sewing it shut. Does your SO sew?


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Posted: 02/21/11 08:44am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I used a scrap piece I trash picked at work (it comes as packing in some parts we get) and used screws and rubber roof lap caulk to seal it up. The lap caulk is great stuff. It adheres to almost anything and stays flexible forever. And it's cheap!


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Posted: 02/20/11 07:50pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for the replies and ALL the much needed info. Its not the fabric type,its the other stuff. I have to access under my door due to one of the outside step bolts being loose and inable to tighten. I am going to scab onto the existing board and install a new board all the way across and put new bolts thru it and I just wanted to seal it back the proper way. Thanks again

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Posted: 02/20/11 05:20pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

GMC Jayco wrote:

On my 1997 Jayco I need to cut back the black tarp type underbelly skin to get access to something. My question is this, How do I go about taping it or re sealing it back where I have to make the cut. Thanks



Hi GMC

If you are referring to the black vapor barrier that looks like a woven plastic tarp, then some are known as Darco vapor barrier. If so then this is what is used to create a permanent mend.

Flex Mend
http://www.flexmend.com/__________Flex_Mend.html

That web site did not exist when I was trying to hunt this stuff down. They use it on mobile homes as well.

I bought a small role from this place. Good service.
http://www.mobilehomerepair.com/shield.htm

Once applied you can gently warm it with a hair dryer and rub. Do not over heat or you will melt right thru

They also sell it in many widths. RV dealers have it in 1,2,3 and 4 foot widths like one big monster sticky patch.

The words "under belly repair" on a web search help.

See here where I was using Flex mend on my slide floor.
The overlap joint of Darco

The Flex mend itself












That is the tape. If you want the actual vapor barrier in case you want a piece of it, the Mobile Repair place sells it as well but heads up it is very thin from them. And so if Flex mend but the Flex Mend Tape being thin for the repair is not a problem as it will conform to any angle or corner.

If you want the original thickness Darco material that one is going to be harder to come by. You can see here my original Darco is 13 mils thick. The Flex Mend is like 5 mils thick but woven and very strong. However if I was doing a large area I would get a new large section of Darco and use the flex mend tape to bond the edges.


Since you have a Jayco, and I called them to see if I could buy it from them. They will not sell to an individual but will sell to a Jayco dealer. Most dealers do not stock the Darco they have to order it in from Jayco but they have the mending tape.

I did find some thick vapor barrier (Darco) at General RV in MI. They bought a entire roll from Keystone and sell it in their parts dept.

Hope this helps

John

PS I too have used Gorrilla tape. The Flex mend is better if you are planning a large repair and to never get it off again. My Gorrilla tape worked good for a quick patch but did work it self off over time. After using both, on a large area for permanent repair I would go with the Flex Mend


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