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Old 06-20-2010, 04:14 PM   #11
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Re: Window skinning options?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jkindt
Why not use FRP?
I did. I removed the screws from the bus windows so I could lie it flat, then used some 3/4", self drilling, self tapping pan head screws to hold it to the bus. Painted it white with the rest of the bus and caulked the seams. It's been on there for two years now with no leaks.
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Old 06-20-2010, 07:01 PM   #12
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Re: Window skinning options?

We have pretty much decided to pull the glass panels out of the main window frames and keep the main frames. Use some vinyl "deck flashing" (UV stabilized) backed with foam insulation sheathing and spray can foamed the insulation in place. Then we will place our final interior layer of foam insulation over that. By keeping the original metal window frames, I can use the 24" size (window frame inside dimensions is slightly less than 24") and the vinyl will be cut to just fit inside the outer trim. And no extra metal will need to be bought. Now I just have to figure out what to do with all that glass I will have! So far this is the cheapest and best solution we have found.

http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1...atalogId=10053
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Old 06-21-2010, 04:28 PM   #13
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Re: Window skinning options?

John I thought about doing something similar but I wanted the extra insulation having the glass windows, a layer of insulation, and then the aluminum sheet.
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Old 06-21-2010, 10:35 PM   #14
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Re: Window skinning options?

We had thought about using the aluminum but since so much of the bus is steel (different expansion rates and lengths) we decided against that. I do know that an aluminum skin over steel framed 40 ft long Eagle bus can grow up to an inch during a hot summer day and then cool back down to original size (yes we did measure our bus over a couple of really hot summer days and it really did lengthen by almost an inch... fascinating). That's a lot of expansion even on a 24"+ window so we decided to opt for the vinyl... and it's CHEAP! Our BB bus window frames are very water tight (except for the one with the broken glass) and we just thought it would be smart (and FRUGAL) to reuse the nice heavy window frames. I guess there's more than one way to skin a bus? That was bad ... time to go eat supper!
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Old 01-19-2011, 05:14 PM   #15
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Re: Window skinning options? FRP and Lexan

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Originally Posted by lornaschinske
Both of the RV doors on my Class C are skinned in FRP... David shot down the fiberglass coated plywood idea I had.
As a newbie - not sure why the FRP idea would be shot down. Many FRP are used RV construction and have UV protection and high insulating values.
They come in assorted widths, colors and strengths - they are used in truck container box construction for years. They can be cleaned nicely to keep that high gloss look for years to come. As far as expansion and contraction - your original windows would have collapsed if it was any value to be concerned about. May be more of a real concern with light thin material types like skins.

Another idea I'm experimenting with is Lexan polycarbonates - they come in all types with UV protections and can be scratch abrasion resistant - used in bullet proof glass. They come in dark colors similar to various shades of automotive glass and have been used in high impact glass applications for years. You can get large pieces or place them side by side in the same window openings. They give a good clean appearance and can be used with window gaskets for a factory appearance. I'm thinking about running one complete seamless run down the bus to give clean lines and appearance. The Lexan offers security (you can’t see in - but you can see out) and easy fix for any interior build along the run. The interior partitions won't show through the glass.

Just my thoughts. Not sure why the FRP wouldn't work - it’s made for this use and design applications. Plus you can purchase them in widths (thickness) to accommodate window installs with gaskets – you can also use them in simple walls applications. Ideal for the custom shower installs or go for that custom aircraft, boat, RV interior/exterior look.

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Old 01-19-2011, 05:58 PM   #16
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Re: Window skinning options? FRP and Lexan

Quote:
Originally Posted by DaddyMac
.. As a newbie - not sure why the FRP idea would be shot down. Many FRP are used RV construction and have UV protection and high insulating values.
They come in assorted widths, colors and strengths - they are used in truck container box construction for years. They can be cleaned nicely to keep that high gloss look for years to come.
FRP does not have high R Value. Also while they may last for "years to come" it's not long enough. We plan on keeping the bus for as long as we possibly can. The Class C is 33 years old. We bought the RV back in 2006. It had these holes in the oh so very dull and sundamaged FRP rear door (the original door). I painted the door to extend it's life (and it looks a lot better) but here are just a few of the holes.



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Old 01-19-2011, 06:32 PM   #17
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Re: FRPs, Insulation and Polys

FRPs do have a high thermal Energy Efficiency - if your comparing skins. FRP is higher compared to metal - no comparison. The FRP thickness and insulation R factor surpasses widely all aluminum sheet alternatives. The finished product enables your trucks, vans and trailers to hold temperatures up to minus -10 degrees F. The oriented strand board outer skin on FRPs is exterior rated Exposure I by the American Plywood Association (APA). FRP panels decrease cooling and heating costs even more than their R rating would seem to indicate 'because they form a solid thermal envelope around the structure, uninterrupted by studs, sills or headers. This substantially reduces air infiltration compared with conventional construction techniques. The panel's solid core of insulation also eliminates the convection looping that can occur in the gaps and spaces typical in batt insulation.

Many of the FRPs can be purchased sandwiched with EPS. Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) foam insulation is used for all types of construction. EPS has a 35 year history of proven performance as a rigid foam insulation. EPS foam provides optimum cost value when compared to other rigid foam insulations of the same R-value design. Your freezer container trucks and building construction coolers are made of the same stuff.

Other FRPs are sandwiched with Polyiso. Polyisocyanurate is one of the nation's most widely-used and cost-effective insulation products and has been cited by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for its responsible impact on the environment. Polyisocyanurate is a closed-cell, rigid foam board insulation used primarily on the roofs of offices, health facilities, warehouses, retail and industrial manufacturing facilities and educational institutions.

Other brands are sandwiched with Styrofoam types. STYROFOAM insulation products feature closed cell structure and maintain their R-value over time. The extruded polystyrene insulation products offer the highest moisture resistance of any foam plastic insulation. The result is high compressive strength and unparalleled resistance to water penetration.

As for lasting – FRPs will outlast any plywood particulates – long past. Studies have shown that they outlast your standard galvanized skins as well – much longer. Many truck containers designs have changed to these FRPs for these very reasons. Many of the newer ultra lite RVs are made of FRP construction.

Not sure why yours has degraded in such a fashion. It looks like an older stippled design – maybe the thin nature of design. Some of the older FRPs had delaminating issues. But rot has generally not been an associated with them. The older FRPs were susceptible to weathering. The outdoor weathering properties of FRP are generally good. However, there is a certain susceptibility to ultraviolet rays which require that ultra-violet absorber be specified for translucent laminates. Originally, UV absorbers were not required for gel coat because the pigments and fillers act as absorbers. Today, all exposed laminates should have a 'smooth' gel coat or a glass surfacing mat specified for the exposed surfaces to prevent fiber ‘blooming’ or surface exposure of the fibers. The high gloss 'smooth' gel coats are the preferred method for this reason. I work with FRPs and Polycarbinates in the construction business.

The other alternative is LEXAN polycarbinates - you can't distroy this stuff - hurricane shutters and impact glass use them.



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Old 01-19-2011, 08:10 PM   #18
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Re: Window skinning options?

But the FRP's that are used for exteriors have a UV coating to them... not to be confused with the FRP that most of us would be buying from the likes of Home Depot and Lowes. The stuff you buy from them does not have a UV coating as they are intended for interior use. And FRP's do not have any insulation value. The insulation mentioned that the FRP is glued to is the insulation not the FRP in the first place. As for using it on an RV... I read the RV forums. I read the threads that say "help my sidewalls on my RV have delaminated... what do I do". As for the rear door of my RV... I certainly didn't make that up. Believe me, I wish it didn't have the holes in it. I also know what it looked like before I painted it. It looked degraded and sun rotted.

Lowes:
6876 Sequentia Structoglass Installion Guide from http://www.cranecomposites.com/sequenti ... lation.asp
"Prolonged direct sunlight on panels may cause abnormal fading and/or rapid expansion depending upon amount of heat build up.Use caution in these areas."

Home Depot:
Stabilit/Glasteel Glasliner FRP states right on the Description "For interior use only". Reading the installation instruction (pdf download) leads me to believe this is not a good choice for a shower liner. "Caution: Failure to use moldings and sealant may cause panel deterioration. In high moisture areas or in standing water, edge swelling and moisture absorption by substrate will occur if appropriate moldings and sealant are not used."
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Old 01-19-2011, 09:12 PM   #19
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Re: Window skinning options?

I believe you - saw the pics - looks bad, but mostly likely as I said above.

All FRPs by themselves do have a thermal value - as do all materials. It’s a question of how much by comparison. FRPs compared to metal have a higher thermal coefficient - if we are talking skin only. Not the added insulation. Plastics or fiber resin based panels hold a higher thermal value then metals do.

ON the product choice - I'm just trying to offer suggestions to applications and specifications for vehicles or in our case 'skoolies' / buses. Your 'Home Depot' or Lowes' products don't fit the applications - that's what I'm pointing out as example. For example your thread link to Sequentia® Wall, Ceiling, and Corrugated Panels are traditional products for commercial and residential use NOT vehicles. If you go their web site you'll find other more useful products made for your needs. While not Depot or Lowes available - easily selected at a local plastic dealer or 'contraction materials.

If you click your link you'll note other materials available in FRPs from the same company: (note the ones for Trucks / RV's).

Glasbord® Sanitary and Durable Wall and Ceiling Panels, Protected by Surfaseal® to provide extra protection against stains, Filon® Exterior and Interior Panels for Recreational, Vehicles High-gloss coilable fiberglass finish with a durable, advanced resin system, Kemlite® Liners and Roofs for Trailers and Truck Bodies. Noble®Exterior Sidewall Automotive Finish for RVs Industry leading sheet glass lauan-based and wood-free panels. ArmorTuf™ High-Impact Interior Liners for Trailers and Truck Bodies, Robust resin system engineered for surface hardness and durability composite solutions Wall and Floor for Truck Bodies and Delivery.

I’m just attempting to offer suggestions. FRP laminated over plywoods have had some delaminated. Others don’t. Others like EPS lams do not generaly delaminate – again match your need to your application. I’m just suggesting you use the correct materials applications – I don't suggest you use interior house materials for exterior truck applications.
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Old 01-19-2011, 11:17 PM   #20
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Re: Window skinning options?

I've been in actively involved in construction since 1979. My father was a tile setter with over 50 years experience, so I grew up knowing tile (I also know how to lay tile, grout, cut, the whole deal). I was a Kitchen/Bath Designer (thanks to NKBA) and owned my own cabinet shop. My husband has run 2 custom cabinet shops (first one, he was still in high school). David also built teller systems for Diebold (his first system he built was so good, they used it for a model rather than put it in the bank). David built his first house at 16 (he's 56 now). David & I installed cabinets and built countertops in GA, FL, NC, SC and remodeled house for a living. So since we have a little experience with residential building and are a little experienced with some of the materials, we will stick with what we know. After all we are building a house on wheels.


And like I said, the stuff most of us have ready access to is the FRP from Lowes and Home Depot. It is NOT suitable for exterior use. Also I don't consider a material with a 0.19 R-Value as an Insulation. Single pane glass has a higher R-Value.


BTW, we've changed our minds again on what we will be skinning our window openings with... again!
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