Well after much turmoil and deliberation, and the input of a good friend, I have decided to go with rebuilding the MMP (Mobile Money Pit) and do what I can to get the delamination under control. The general consensus, despite grandiose sales talk, is that getting delamination under control and restoring a semblance of structural integrity would require completely gutting the MMP, building a wooden frame work to compliment the metal structure, and screwing and gluing things back together again.
So with that in mind, I am going to finish gutting the front third and the back third. The center third is still pretty much intact. So I will do what I can with each end to secure the outside fiberglass again which will in turn, fingers crossed, relieve the destructive forces on the parts that are still solid. In doing some preliminary figuring on materials needed I am spending less than purchasing the wonder epoxy in the quantity needed by at about half. Each Composite Products RV Delamination Repair Epoxy Kit is $281, and I would need at least 3 and probably 4 of them to cover everything. Each kit covers 45-50 sq. ft. Well for about $570 I can get all the necessary 2x3x8 studs, glue, lauan plywood, and screws to fix both ends. That is more doable than $843-$1125 for glorified epoxy and all the pie-in-the-sky promises.
I might not be going this route if I had $5-7,000 laying around for a newer travel trailer that I could pull with my pickup, but that is not a viable option so no go there--and banks will not lend money on anything older than 2010, and who would want one of those slapped together things. See Lakota Wolf's video post from Jayco to see the quality put into RVs now days if you are not sure what I am referring to here.
So we will more than likely miss this year's camping season. However, being this far south the warm weather generally stretches into December so the forecast is that we still might get out before year's end. And if this winter turns out like last winter we could be camping January thru March in temperate temperatures and weather. Or we may hit the Gulf Coast, we have not been there yet, or southern Florida, or, or, or....ARRRG! So many places so little time LOL.
It feels good to have a workable plan in place again. I was very discouraged with the messes I was uncovering and no real options for repair that would end with any kind of structural integrity reinstated to the walls of the MMP. The roof has two areas that I need to remove antennas--TV, radio, and CB--and lay down fiberglass to seal the holes. These have been leaking for quite a while, but I would guess the TV antenna has been leaking since it was installed because of the amount of decomposed--read compost--wood and completely rusted out main metal roof supports. Replacing the one metal beam, installing an extra one, and hopefully straitening the third beam will be the major expense of this project. If I had all the needed equipment for cutting and welding the 1.5x1.5x3/16x 7"6" beams it would cost me about $300. But I will have to go to the local welding shop and have them do the repairs so there is a good chance it will be a lot more.
Now do not get me wrong, I am as as avid a tool buyer as the next person, but a metal chopsaw, wire feed welder, and needed acetylene, oxygen, and wire for the welder would be a lot of expense for 2 or 3 7'6" metal cross members LOL. And SWMBO might not understand the correlation of $3-4,000 spent on tools vs. $3-600 spent at the welding shop as a good deal because of future project that might, just might, appear and require those tools LOL. I will still get my share of hand and power hand tools out of this, so all is not lost in that department.
OK, I have bent all of your ears long enough with this latest edition of the on-going saga of the MMP. Take care all, and a special shout-out to my friends who stayed the course to help me through this decision process. You know who you are, and you are greatly appreciated. Take care and be always remember, The end point is not the purpose, the entire trip is the adventure.
Good for you Russ!! and good luck, wish I was close enough to lend a hand.
I wish you the best of luck with this Russ! Your reasons are sound, and it's great that you have finally come to a decision.
Now get to work! LOL
Thank you, Tina. Watching your progress encourages me to continue. If I ever get the yard under control I will be able to get back at the MMP. Last 3 days have all been mowing, mowing, and more mowing.