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Thread: installing a awning guid rail to fiberglass

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    Default installing a awning guid rail to fiberglass

    I'm sure someone on here must have done this in the past? What is the best way to secure a awning strip to fiberglass. The one I have has the screw holes but I doubt screws alone would be strong enough for a good fixing as they can only be short stainless steel screws, I do have some Sikaflex 512 bonding sealant left so will this give a good bond along with the screws.
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    If the surface is properly degreased and you have an adequate close-fitting flat to flat area of contact between the parts to be joined, then I'd say that Sikaflex 512 would do the job very well indeed. It would provide a non-destructive method of making a secure joint that would avoid penetrating the vehicle skin thereby leaving indelible scars. Screws would concentrate all forces on one tiny spot, much as would a rivet, should it come under sudden load then the chances of failure would be high. The aircraft and Formula 1 industries moved away from mechanical fixings and into bonding long ago because highly stressed structures could then spread their loads over big areas and so stay intact in service.

    You probably know already that Sikaflex that squeezes out of a joint can be wiped away with Turps / White Spirit while still wet. Should at some time in the future you decide to reverse the exercise, I can report from my own experiences that separating a sikaflexed joint takes quite some doing, but IS possible leaving the original surfaces unmarked. Don't think of it a glorified silicone-sealer.... it's much more adhesive, strong and durable than that.

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    I looked at the strip the other day Mike and the back side is concaved like a half moon but doing it the way you suggest is good but it may be difficult as the area I need to fit it to isn't flat along the entire length of the surface but curves slightly at each end and no way of getting any clamps to hold it while it sets. I think once I've installed it then it's staying were it is. So I'm now thinking of both small screws or rivets with washers on the back along with the Sikaflex 512 This way the screws will hold it in place while the adhesive sets. (I hope)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Brown View Post
    I looked at the strip the other day Mike and the back side is concaved like a half moon but doing it the way you suggest is good but it may be difficult as the area I need to fit it to isn't flat along the entire length of the surface but curves slightly at each end and no way of getting any clamps to hold it while it sets. I think once I've installed it then it's staying were it is. So I'm now thinking of both small screws or rivets with washers on the back along with the Sikaflex 512 This way the screws will hold it in place while the adhesive sets. (I hope)
    ........................... and the Sikaflex will also take some of the strain from the screws if the wind if heavy and fighting the canvas

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    Sikaflex has pretty good gap-filling ability and sets relatively quickly when exposed to the humidity of the air but if you are willing to tolerate the screw holes then a belt-n-braces approach using both together would probably work well.

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    On Romeo, my old Renault Trafic I used screws and Geocell Works an adhesive / sealant the same properties as your Sikaflex for a rail that permanently held my Fiamma Caravanstore Awning to the side of the van. The type of awning that rolls up and is permanently on the van. I know 4 years 2 owners later that awning is still on the van.

    Jon

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    I have a tube of this in white, I used this to glue the metal sills to the fibreglass section on chitty combined with rivets and that's going no where. I was cleaning my daughters garage and came across a full tube of it.


    WP_20160711_16_23_56_Pro (Medium).jpg
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    Yes the sealant / adhesive I used was PU as I said it took a load of abuse. All I used were small self tappers 1/2 inch and the sticky stuff.
    The Caravanstor awning was the small one 1.8 metre but it was in place all the time - only taken off in the winter.
    Jon

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    Cheers Jon, looks like I'll be using the PU sealer and from experience I know this stuff is good. It will have to wait until after my 5 days away starting next Thursday because I might spray the aluminium strip white to match the van.
    "Take nothing but pictures. Leave nothing but footprints. Kill nothing but time"

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    Where are you going to attach it?
    On the roof or above the door?

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    To the lift up roof section bit
    "Take nothing but pictures. Leave nothing but footprints. Kill nothing but time"

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    I keep thinking of putting an awning rail on the lift up part of my roof, but I was planning on the white plastic rail instead of the aluminium one as I thought it would look better.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Brown View Post
    Cheers Jon, looks like I'll be using the PU sealer and from experience I know this stuff is good. It will have to wait until after my 5 days away starting next Thursday because I might spray the aluminium strip white to match the van.
    WOW color coded awning rail Chitty is getting posh

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    Quote Originally Posted by kernowjon View Post
    WOW color coded awning rail Chitty is getting posh
    I couldn't wait and will have a harder job of masking and spraying when I get a chance during the summer. I installed it today, small self tappers to hold it and even without the PU adhesive it was quite strong but I drilled and installed the screws then removed them, applied the adhesive and then screwed it back on and it feels solid but not putting an canopy on it for a good 48hrs. sorry about the quality of photo but sun was facing me and I had to shield the lens withmy hand.
    WP_20170410_13_14_23_Pro (Medium).jpg
    "Take nothing but pictures. Leave nothing but footprints. Kill nothing but time"

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    Posh Chitty - if you are going to the autumn bash I am parking my pod nowhere near you'll make Clockwork Orange look a real lash-up
    Jon

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    Quote Originally Posted by kernowjon View Post
    Posh Chitty - if you are going to the autumn bash I am parking my pod nowhere near you'll make Clockwork Orange look a real lash-up
    Jon
    Lol Thanks Jon

    I was parked on a site last week and a few put chitty to shame there was even a campervan there the size of an artic lorry and it dwarfed chitty lol but saying that she gave 6 of us a good week away, myself and the Mrs in the campervan, the 5 year old granddaughter in the Luton section and my daughter and other 2 granddaughters in the awning, she quite happily sat 6 of us in there when we had a meal on a cold night but other nights the kids were out sat at the camping table eating theirs and they loved it, so a little 2 berth camper and awning gave 6 people a great holiday. We did have people come over to us to check chitty out and one guy offered to buy it from me, he walked away sad because she's not for sale.
    "Take nothing but pictures. Leave nothing but footprints. Kill nothing but time"

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