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Old 01-28-2019, 07:21 PM   #1
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Collins / Corbeil Floor Help

I'm working on tearing down the inside of my new bus (2003 Chevy / Collins 6-window), and am at the floor and ceiling now. There are four securement "rails" on each side where the seats, and I assume other accessories, would attach to the floor. They are attached with hex-drive bolts or screws, that seem quite seized. The bolts are every 6 inches or so, so you can imagine that's a LOT of bolts to undo, especially if seized.

Has anyone dealt with these? Any advice that you can offer? (The good news is that this made seat removal VERY simple and quick - all out in less than an hour.) In the pictures you can see the rail details, and in the larger picture you can see six of the eight rails in the floor. I'm thinking an impact with the appropriate "socket".

Thanks in advance!
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File Type: jpg rail detail.jpg (331.2 KB, 24 views)
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Old 01-28-2019, 07:44 PM   #2
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Start with some PB Blaster on each bolt and wait a day or so before attacking them with an battery impact driver. After there's always grinding, prying,etc. , what ever works best for you.
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Old 01-29-2019, 12:03 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by farok View Post
I'm working on tearing down the inside of my new bus (2003 Chevy / Collins 6-window), and am at the floor and ceiling now. There are four securement "rails" on each side where the seats, and I assume other accessories, would attach to the floor. They are attached with hex-drive bolts or screws, that seem quite seized. The bolts are every 6 inches or so, so you can imagine that's a LOT of bolts to undo, especially if seized.

Has anyone dealt with these? Any advice that you can offer? (The good news is that this made seat removal VERY simple and quick - all out in less than an hour.) In the pictures you can see the rail details, and in the larger picture you can see six of the eight rails in the floor. I'm thinking an impact with the appropriate "socket".

Thanks in advance!
I have a 2004 Ford E350 Corbeil and have some feelings about those L-Tracks. Ours were so gummed up from years of service that there was no way to get an allen wrench to work. I tried a couple of different things, but ultimately ended up attacking it from underneath with an angle grinder. It was a slow process, but it can be done.

Just as an FYI, I got copies of the wiring diagrams and info about the multiplex system and such from Collins. They're posted somewhere on here - I think the Electrical section.

EDIT: Just realized yours is a Collins, not Corbeil. You can probably reach out to the good folks over at Collins for the specific info for your bus. They were very helpful for me.
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Old 01-29-2019, 06:17 PM   #4
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Thanks. I'm hoping to not go the angle grinder route, but if it comes to that... good note on the diagrams from Collins as well - I'll have to try that if I can't trace all the wires. Hopefully with the inside skin removed, it shouldn't be that big of a deal.
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Old 01-29-2019, 06:30 PM   #5
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best fix for rusty bolts, after the PB Blaster, is a good whack with a hammer.
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Old 01-29-2019, 07:21 PM   #6
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Read an interesting DOD study a while back. They tested and compared all the major "rust dissolvers" along with several home brews.


A "home brew" beat them all for speed and efficacy. And it is cheap.


50% acetone + 50% transmission fluid


Listen to farmers. (I am only guessing it was a farmer but they do seem to have a knack for coming up with $hit that works)



I have tried it, it works great. Just gotta shake it up good before using as it does separate after sitting a while.


A torch is handy too. Heat shocking can bust rust loose.
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Old 02-04-2019, 01:48 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weboughtabus View Post
I have a 2004 Ford E350 Corbeil and have some feelings about those L-Tracks. Ours were so gummed up from years of service that there was no way to get an allen wrench to work. I tried a couple of different things, but ultimately ended up attacking it from underneath with an angle grinder. It was a slow process, but it can be done.

Just as an FYI, I got copies of the wiring diagrams and info about the multiplex system and such from Collins. They're posted somewhere on here - I think the Electrical section.

EDIT: Just realized yours is a Collins, not Corbeil. You can probably reach out to the good folks over at Collins for the specific info for your bus. They were very helpful for me.
For your L Tracks, did you drop the fuel tank and/or remove the battery box and A/C condenser? Seems like if that's the route, I'd rather attack from above somehow. I didn't consider the things in the way. I'm also considering just putting a linoleum floor or the like over the existing mess and skip it. We're not going to be living in the bus. I'll think on that some more.

Thanks for posting the electrical diagrams, as well! I found them, and we'll see if it matches, since I think the two companies merged before my '03 was built. If it doesn't match, I'll give Collins a ring.

Chris
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Old 02-04-2019, 01:51 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by farok View Post
For your L Tracks, did you drop the fuel tank and/or remove the battery box and A/C condenser? Seems like if that's the route, I'd rather attack from above somehow. I didn't consider the things in the way. I'm also considering just putting a linoleum floor or the like over the existing mess and skip it. We're not going to be living in the bus. I'll think on that some more.

Thanks for posting the electrical diagrams, as well! I found them, and we'll see if it matches, since I think the two companies merged before my '03 was built. If it doesn't match, I'll give Collins a ring.

Chris
We did drop the AC Condenser, but not the batteries or the fuel tank. Personally I'd like to see what's going on under the plywood, make sure there isn't any rust or mold built up, so my plan was always to go down to bare metal.

And I hope the schematics are helpful, but I'd imagine they wouldn't be. Good luck with your build!
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Old 02-04-2019, 08:02 PM   #9
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Tonight I started pulling up some of the rubber to see what the plywood really looks like. Based on the rear door and the gas tank inspection hole, it looks like there's 3/8" plywood, MAYBE 1/2". That said, it does NOT look or feel rotten anywhere, and I have no rust at floor level anywhere on the bus. I'm thinking that I may instead leave everything where it is after all. We're not living in the bus full time, and will be traveling in it a few weeks at a time max, and if during the winter it'll be south, not north. The floor rails won't be visible almost anywhere given the floor plan I have, either. While an insulated floor would be nice, I think it's a nice-to-have that I just don't need. That said, I'm planning to remove all the rubber between the inner rails (each goes in about 28" from the walls) and put in linoleum or some similar floor just to cover and make it easier to clean.

Hopefully I'm not making a big mistake here, but I'm thinking this makes sense. Any contrary opinions?
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Old 02-04-2019, 08:32 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by farok View Post
Tonight I started pulling up some of the rubber to see what the plywood really looks like. Based on the rear door and the gas tank inspection hole, it looks like there's 3/8" plywood, MAYBE 1/2". That said, it does NOT look or feel rotten anywhere, and I have no rust at floor level anywhere on the bus. I'm thinking that I may instead leave everything where it is after all. We're not living in the bus full time, and will be traveling in it a few weeks at a time max, and if during the winter it'll be south, not north. The floor rails won't be visible almost anywhere given the floor plan I have, either. While an insulated floor would be nice, I think it's a nice-to-have that I just don't need. That said, I'm planning to remove all the rubber between the inner rails (each goes in about 28" from the walls) and put in linoleum or some similar floor just to cover and make it easier to clean.

Hopefully I'm not making a big mistake here, but I'm thinking this makes sense. Any contrary opinions?
Where did your bus come from? I can almost guarantee no matter how good of shape your plywood is in, there is rust that needs addressing under it. My plywood was in great shape and a bear to get up because none of it was rotten. There was plenty of rust under it. Some right through the floor in spots. Unless you got it from out west somewhere, chance are good there is rust and you would be making a big mistake not addressing it now.
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