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  #1  
Old 08-10-2011
Chuck Chuck is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Port Angeles, Wa.
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Default Repairing a sagging ceiling

Repairing the sagging ceiling in my 79’ FC33SB.
I am in the process of upgrading the inside of my Bird. On of the most noticeable problems is the sagging ceiling. The sag was caused by 2 problems.
1, Moisture in the backer board in each panel.
2, The ceiling panels was glued to 20 gauge steel sheets in the center. The sheets don’t have any structural form.
The following is my repairs for the ceiling.

Photo 1 Jig and grinder used to sand the back of the ceiling panels. The jig has the same arc as the ribs on the Bird.

Photo 2, Panel on jig notice the sag were the panel does not touch the jig. I then sanded them with a course disk to remove any coating. It alsoallows even penatration of the hardner.

Photo 3, The PC wood hardener and sponge I use for spreading. The hardener is a water based material. Application is simple pour on and spread with a sponge until saturated. wait 1/2 hour and reapply. I use a 16 oz. bottle for each panel.
I found it at a local Do it Best hardware store Cost $12.00 per bottle. I spent $75.00 for my 33 FC.

Photo 4, Panel drying on the jig, Slats hold the panel to the jig to correct the sag in photo 2. The hardener is dry in 4 hours.

Photo 5, The 20 gauge sheet metal panels. I used a armstrong and hammer break to bend a 5/8” flange on each side of the steel sheets.

Now to reinstall the ceiling panels. And on to the next project.
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  #2  
Old 08-10-2011
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MRPutz MRPutz is offline
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Nice work Chuck!
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  #3  
Old 08-10-2011
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Turbokitty Turbokitty is offline
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Lets see some pictures of the bus! Paint looks good Great ceiling work though some of your pictures need to be turned right side up
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Old 08-10-2011
Chuck Chuck is offline
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I will try to post some more photos. My next project is the electrical system. The upper electrical panel uses automatic circuit breakers. I see them as a turn signal flasher. When a short happens they will continue to cycle until somthing goes POOF!
I have built a new panel that will be installed wen the ceiling is completed. It will reside in the front overhead cabinet for easy access.
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Old 08-10-2011
DW SD DW SD is offline
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Very cool. I built a similar jig, but hadn't used it yet.

How hard does the wood dry? It is like fiberglass resin?

I had considered gluing my panel to 1/4" plywood backer board to get things straightened out.

good luck!

Doug
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Old 08-11-2011
Chuck Chuck is offline
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Doug
I first tried a 2 part resin used for repairing rotted wood on boats. Very costly $50.00 per kit for one panel, $400.00 for my bird. I did not care for it because it sat on the surface instead of sinking in. The PC wood hardner soaks in quickly and gives body, yet it has some flex.
In the galley area, 3 panels, I am using plastic sheets from the big box store. It will be easier to clean and much brighter. I will post photos when installed. I am also installing a form of strip lighting above the overhead cabinets. I will post more info on the lights when I finish the job.
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Old 08-11-2011
DW SD DW SD is offline
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Chuck,
I too had considered replacing all of the panels, either using 1/4" plywood covered in hull carpet or padded vinyl or maybe even alcantra. Too much $ and work, but maybe some day.
Not sure if you thought of it, but the later birds use plastic upholstery plug and receivers. Like on the back of a door panel on your car to retain the ceiling panels. I considers installing those on new panels. Don't think you'd need many to retain a lightweight panel, especially with the curve.

I am eager to see your results!

Doug
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Old 08-11-2011
Patric Patric is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck View Post
I am using plastic sheets from the big box store.
I was thinking about this option for my 73. Let us know how they work. My problem is all the structure is still in place and I am reluctant to gut it out just to do this. Anybody ever slip these in without removing stuff?
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  #9  
Old 08-11-2011
Chuck Chuck is offline
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On my 79 I removed the upper cabinets only. The ceiling panels were glued to the sheet metal. The glue failed on 1/2 the panels, looked like contact cement. The rest of the panels needed prying to release the glue, only 2 panels had any damage, it was small tears to the backing no damage to the surface. Two panels by the bath / micro wave had screws above the bath wall that I could not get to. I opted to sand and coat them in place. I modified the jig to rest on the bath wall and a support on the other side wile the hardner dried. I plan to use a spray glue to reattach the panels to the sheet metal.
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  #10  
Old 09-30-2011
DW SD DW SD is offline
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Chuck,
How did the repair turn out?
Would you see it as an option to replace older panels with newer style upholstery male female retainers? Like you see on vehicle panels in newer vehicles? My panels are messed up from water damage. I was thinking about having an upholstery shop make new panels, but was thinking about a different retainer mechanism (than glue).

thank you,

Doug
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