Yesterday, I was removing all of the rivets off the interior side walls of my Bluebird bus. I got EVERY rivet removed. I did not realize that the lower panel, with the chair rail, was constructed the way it was until today, when Nat_ster told me about it and showed his diagram:
The problem is... in my rivet-removing haste, I ALREADY removed all of these rivets holding the chair rail in. Not only that, but I hacked a big section out trying to figure out what was holding it in. You can see the rail I am talking about here (NOTE This is not my bus, it is LaCasitaBus):
I have done a lot of research and many said to not remove it. I was feeling sick to my stomach that I took two steps forward and a MAJOR step back until I found this (The Good Ship, Anne Marie):
In their page, they detailed the same sort of dilemma at this page:
That made me feel a bit better that I wasn't the only one who made this mistake. So... I know our buses are way overbuilt. What is going to happen if I continue with the removal of this chair rail? Is it going to cause some serious problems or will it likely never show in an RV application? Will my floors somehow separate from my walls
or will I be just fine? The rivet's are 1/4" and will offer a pretty significant expense to re-rivet all of them, including investing in necessary tooling. Should I just continue and cut them out with an angle grinder?
I could really use some advice right now and I think this thread could be a good example for others in the future of what to do (or what NOT to do) with the chair rails. As it sits, I have spent hours reading posts and researching today, only to come up with no conclusive evidence on whether or not it will be harmful to remove them. Thoughts?