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Old 04-07-2015, 02:26 AM   #1
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Great Stuff?

Hello! So we decided on a 75 ford 72 pax! Finally got the thing gutted, grinded, and the floor primed.

We will be living full time in this thing come August.

We are on a shoestring budget.

We were gifted a wood burning stove that we will use for heat.

We are contemplating how to insulate this beast. I chatted with a Home Depot guy for about a half hour yesterday, and realized my initial plan might need more thought.

So, what do you guys think?
The initial plan is/was;

Floor- sanded and sealed metal (check!), then foam panel insulation, then osb boards as subfloor, then hardwood floor.

Walls- foam panel insulation where they fit, then wood over it. Leave the windows, but "frame" them with wood.

Ceiling- drilling many holes from the inside then spraying in Great Stuff spray foam insulation. Seal drill holes with caulk, then paint to help mask them.


However, now I'm wondering if this is the best option, especially with the ceiling.

I really like the look of the bare metal ceiling, and I am not sure if we have to time or patience to remove all the rivets in the side walls and the ceiling, install batting, then put up wood. I just know that winter will be cold and without ceiling insulation, it will rain on us from the condensation.

Let me know what you think about trying to drill holes in the ceiling and put in great stuff as insulation! Has it been done?!?
Thanks!!
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Old 04-07-2015, 11:39 AM   #2
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I know there have been lots of threads about insulation. I have read as many as I could find, and the consensus is that some people like great stuff while other folks argue that it will rust metal.

I'm just wondering if anyone has experience putting this stuff in their bus. I looked thru a vent hole in the ceiling, and see no insulation whatsoever up there.
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Old 04-07-2015, 12:46 PM   #3
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Try contacting someone knowlegable at Retrofoam of Colorado Springs. Retrofoam did my shop and house. Both were differant products made for the particular job.
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Old 04-07-2015, 11:00 PM   #4
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Great stuff expanding single part foam needs air to dry. If it doesn't dry and expand properly, the chemicals left are corrosive to steel.

It works great for sealing small gaps under half inch around the rigid Styrofoam.

It will not work in the gap of the ceiling.

Low budget or not, that metal ceiling skin needs to come down, and stay down.

I'm not going to type four paragraphs tonight explaining why. No time for that tonight. Do a search containing the words "Insulation" and "Thermal Break" and read the threads that come up.

Nat
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Old 04-08-2015, 12:09 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maggiemae View Post
I really like the look of the bare metal ceiling, and I am not sure if we have to time or patience to remove all the rivets in the side walls and the ceiling, install batting, then put up wood. I just know that winter will be cold and without ceiling insulation, it will rain on us from the condensation.
Fear not: your ceiling and walls are probably installed with blind aka pop rivets, right? Those can be removed fairly rapidly, particularly if you have a good supply of compressed air available. Just last week I peeled all the metal off the interior walls in mine; the ceiling will be coming up shortly.

The secrets are these:
  • Get an air powered chisel (the Harbor Freight Air Impact Hammer Kit for USD$11 is a fine choice; also buy the package of replacement chisels)
  • Re-grind the chisel so that it has just one taper, ie so it's shaped like a conventional wood chisel. After the flat-edge chisel has broken, you can modify the forked chisel in this way too.
  • For the 3/32" shank rivets (the big ones, maybe 3/8-1/2" heads) use a pin punch and hammer to drive the mandrel out through the back of the rivet
  • Use the air chisel to peel the head off each rivet
It can be done with a regular hammer instead but it's not so fast. I did some with a 4 pound "mini sledge" hammer just to see how it went.

Once I had the technique down, and in particular the re-ground chisel helped immensely, I could buzz the heads off the small rivets in about one second each and the large rivets about 2-3 seconds each.

I agree the bare metal does look nice. But I find its greater radiant effect (as compared to a thin plywood etc) unpleasantly chilling in the winter, and I think you'll really struggle to get any meaningful insulation accomplished without removing the metal skin inside.
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Old 04-08-2015, 08:42 AM   #6
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Here is some information that I think you may find useful in your decision, especially considering your intent to use a wood burning stove. I also noted that although Dow specifies superior adhesion on numerous products to prevent condensation, it fails to mention metals. In at least one of the SDS (safety data sheets) in specifically says that it is incompatible with metal compounds.

http://msdssearch.dow.com/PublishedL...romPage=GetDoc

"6. Cured foam is combustible and will burn if exposed
to temperatures above 240°F (116°C). Do not
apply GREAT STUFF™ foam around heaters, high
heat lamps or recessed lighting fixtures, radiators,
furnaces or fireplaces where it could contact heat-conducting
surfaces. Do not use GREAT STUFF™ foam
inside electrical boxes or panels (applications around the
boxes are permitted)."

Dow's main page for all types of "Great Stuff" if anyone is interested in reading more info.
GREAT STUFF™ Gaps & Cracks Insulating Foam Sealant
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Old 04-08-2015, 04:51 PM   #7
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Great Stuff is also super expensive. It only seems cheap because it's a few bucks a can. But it's like buying ketchup in 1oz bottles - the coverage is so small compared to other options that you pay way more per cubic foot overall.
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Old 04-08-2015, 11:02 PM   #8
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"the chemicals left are corrosive to steel." Nat, that just isn't true.
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Old 04-09-2015, 06:07 AM   #9
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uncured Great Stuff

Quote:
Originally Posted by ol trunt View Post
"the chemicals left are corrosive to steel." Nat, that just isn't true.
Maybe not the cured foam ol trunt, but you neglected to include the first part of Nat's quote
Quote:
Quote:
Great stuff expanding single part foam needs air to dry. If it doesn't dry and expand properly...
The OP was specifically asking about using it in a confined space, where it will not cure correctly if it does not have access to air. There is build post on here somewhere elaborating on how an application of great stuff remained fluid and only cured on the small surface area that was exposed at the insertion point of the nozzle, it was a mess to fix.

The company's own SDS for uncured Great Stuff, does say it is incompatible with metal compounds. The link to these documents is in my earlier post. I have no personal experience with metals and uncured Great Stuff, but I can tell you that the cured stuff changes to a very dark color when exposed to UV light over the course of a couple years.
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Old 04-09-2015, 12:02 PM   #10
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Right you are SL " Avoid contact with metals such as aluminum, brass, copper, galvanized metals, tin, zinc". Interesting that the (M)SDS doesn't mention steel. Of course the product is delivered in a steel vessel--probably coated with something?

Here's to a successful bus build and thanks.
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