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Old 04-10-2020, 04:22 PM   #1
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Installing new floor OVER original floor

Ahoy - New user and skoolie builder here, looking for some advice.



I'm actually helping my son convert his 2004 Thomas Engine SPED shorty, and we've hit a major roadblock. The Sure-Lok tracks in the floor are held in place by hex bolts that are completey rusted and locked where the bolt connects on the underside of the bus.


He is adamant about NOT installing the new floor over the existing floor, insisting that the original flooring be removed. While I'm trying to advise him that it would be exponentially easier to simply build the new floor atop the old.


Your thoughts, pros, and cons are whole-heartedly welcomed.
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Old 04-10-2020, 04:35 PM   #2
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Your son is right. The plywood will be wet and nasty and needs to come up, and the steel floor underneath will likely be at least a little rusty and in need of treatment. If this bus is from a dry place like Arizona then perhaps this won't be the case, but even then the plywood plus the rubber matting is about 1" thick, and headroom in a school bus is low enough that every inch counts.
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Old 04-10-2020, 04:38 PM   #3
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I cut all the bolts out with a blade on an angle grinder. I worked from below where I could then from above. Then I filled all the holes with sikaflex or Henry’s wet patch. It’s a huge pain in the butt. About 10 minutes per foot of track.
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Old 04-10-2020, 04:41 PM   #4
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Right, if there’s any chance of rust, pull it. In my case, the steel is bright and shiny underneath
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Old 04-10-2020, 04:48 PM   #5
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Killer! Thanks, folks!
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Old 04-11-2020, 12:51 AM   #6
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Note that one person on this site cut out the plywood (circular saw set to the plywood thickness). With the wood removed, he gained access to the bolts holding the tracks and could cut them. A pry bar was also helpful.


Personally, I would think that the after removing the plywood between the tracks it would be easy to use a cold chisel and/or flat blade screw driver to knock out the plywood from under the tracks. Then the bolts are easy pickings by an angle grinder with a cut-off blade.
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Old 04-11-2020, 08:00 AM   #7
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I had to break the plywood from around an anchor point for a wheelchair and use a sawzall to cut the bolt between the anchor and steel. The underside was obstructed by a storage box. A couple seat bolts were also inaccessible to a wrench underneath, I went ahead and used the sawzall through the plywood and bolts after breaking away as much as I could.
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