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Old 08-21-2016, 10:07 AM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Chair rail removal

I've seen that a couple people say that I cannot remove these because they are structural. The gap between these and the wall is completely sealed, so any leaky windows will leak right into them, water will pool and it will rust out the side of the bus. My bus came from down south so it's pretty clean, other than the rust behind these rails!

I've already started removing them, I have no choice. You have to take care of rust while you still can, or you'll have a much bigger problem on your hands...

Should I reinstall the rails after I clean up the rust spots? I honestly was just going to leave it out and mount a furring strip across the bottom so I can frame out the walls, seemed like it would be fine in my head...
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Old 08-21-2016, 10:43 AM   #2
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I've seen that a couple people say that I cannot remove these because they are structural. The gap between these and the wall is completely sealed, so any leaky windows will leak right into them, water will pool and it will rust out the side of the bus. My bus came from down south so it's pretty clean, other than the rust behind these rails!

I've already started removing them, I have no choice. You have to take care of rust while you still can, or you'll have a much bigger problem on your hands...

Should I reinstall the rails after I clean up the rust spots? I honestly was just going to leave it out and mount a furring strip across the bottom so I can frame out the walls, seemed like it would be fine in my head...
I'm not sure how your chair rails are mounted... But mine are solid with the wall steel. If I took mine off, it'd have to be with a sawzall and angle grinder.

Are yours bolted on?
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Old 08-21-2016, 10:45 AM   #3
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They're riveted to the ribs and I think they're just caulked to the rubber floor? I started removing the back drivers side because that was the worst leak, and it wasn't hard to peel away after removing the rivets so I don't think it's welded.. The only part is the wheel well, where I would have to cut it on each end of it.

In my head having structural support means nothing if it's just supporting rust (and later on if I did nothing a big ole' hole through the side!)
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Old 08-21-2016, 10:54 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by TheMagicBus View Post
They're riveted to the ribs and I think they're just caulked to the rubber floor? I started removing the back drivers side because that was the worst leak, and it wasn't hard to peel away after removing the rivets so I don't think it's welded.. The only part is the wheel well, where I would have to cut it on each end of it.

In my head having structural support means nothing if it's just supporting rust (and later on if I did nothing a big ole' hole through the side!)
Rust is equal to termites holding hands...
The description you give sounds completely different than my set up
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Old 08-21-2016, 11:08 AM   #5
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Here's the way mine are set up





The bigger hole is for the slobber tube coming down from the HVAC overhead...



Driver's side have a chase formed over the hoses to rear heaters
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Old 08-21-2016, 11:09 AM   #6
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there is an older thread about chair rail removal. if i recall correctly, the chair rail was folded into the construction of the floor. pretty hard to remove without tearing out the floor.

maybe search the forum for the username "Natster" and chair rail??

good luck chasing rust! sounds like lots of work.
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Old 08-21-2016, 11:23 AM   #7
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Just my 2c & it may be only worth a penny, Chair rail is structual for the standards of a SCHOOL BUS as is all the seats installed all components working togeather, I removed the portion on mine that's in the living area, just the lip portion I left the portion that is attached to the ribs in place, & I installed 3/4" x 3" strips of plywood 1ft a part all the way around screwed into the ribs. Does it meet the standards of a SCHOOL BUS?
Maybe not but I'll put it up against a SS any day.
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Old 08-21-2016, 11:26 AM   #8
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Like I can definitely see how it can provide structural support, but adding multiple horizontal supports going across the entirety of the bus should in theory do just almost as much as the seat rails, especially with there being more supports higher up the wall instead of just at the bottom..
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Old 08-21-2016, 11:32 AM   #9
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I know it wouldn't meet the same standards, but I'm not really looking at going off a jump or rolling it haha. I'm just trying to be sure that I won't clip a tree branch or something and have the top of the bus come off!

Still, pretty much anything you do to a bus, it will most likely be safer than an RV, right?
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Old 08-21-2016, 11:36 AM   #10
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Well everyone comes on here & says they want to maintain the standards of the School Bus. In that case don't touch it.
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