Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

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Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by ptate on Mon Sep 11, 2017 11:50 am

Well, after visiting Cornwall, I noticed a small damp patch near the kitchen unit/rear door. Decided to put an old towel over it and see if it was just wet from a spill etc, as Cornwall was quite wet when we were down there (still better then anywhere else though...!!).

After a day or so (it has rained solid up here, for the last week), I checked and the towel was wet, but so was the floor..... Gulp.... scratch head

Decided to investigate and found:

1. Rotten fill panel
2. Rotten side to the sink unit
3. Rotten section of body that supports the door seal
4. Rotten timber floor
5. Rotten bodywork under the bumper end cap
6. Rotten bodywork under the rainwater gutter
7. Rotten back panel to the sink area
8. Wet fibreglass insulation

censored! censored! censored!

So, had no option but to go for it and remove everything, here it is so far........ Taped over the hole through the body under the gutter and the rotten section near the door seal as I don't weld in the rain........!!!!!!


Rusty section behind end cap:




Section of floor and units etc removed to dry;



Taped up over large rusty section near door seal, until the rain stops here:



Looking up into the roof, from the inside, showing the wet and rust....!!!



That rust and wet is hidden behind here....!!!!!!!!



Wet insulation and rust due to it:



Lots of damage to repair:



I'll update the thread when it stops raining and let you see the restoration as it goes along.

Peace. up!
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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by daisy mae on Mon Sep 11, 2017 12:33 pm

Wow what a job on you have there, will be a nice van again when you have finished, good luck, allthumbz hope it stops raining soon.
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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by ptate on Wed Sep 13, 2017 10:07 am

Many thanks Daisy Mae...... It is a big job....!!

Well, been investigating further, by cutting a hole in the rear quarter panel..... Ouch...!! so_sad

Here is it so far - but still taped over, due to more rain.....!!!

Yellow lines show extent of cuts through to interior, the internal pic is self-explanatory and the final shows the work required to the bottom section.






Left the van overnight after siliconing the rainwater channels, to see if that stopped it, then put some dry towels in the hole - Checked this morning and it is still leaking, so looks like it may be travelling internally from somewhere else on the van and coming out through the nearest opening.

Got a couple of potential weak points to look at when the b***dy rain stops..... censored!
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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by ptate on Wed Sep 13, 2017 10:09 am

Oh, the quarter panel cuts were needed anyway to remove some accumulated rust.
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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by -mojo- on Wed Sep 13, 2017 11:31 am

I know it sounds a bit unlikely, but have you definitely ruled out a leak from the roof side window travelling along to the back of the van? Those windows have a reputation for leaking via the seal inside, invisibly behind the roof trim panels - both of my high-top A/S conversions suffered from this.
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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by ptate on Fri Sep 15, 2017 8:07 pm

Thanks very much Mojo  up!

Took out the window and no ingress of water:



So, removed the side vents in the plastic roof and sealed them completely as they are not required.

Ster that, the grinder came out again and I opened up the slot on the rear quarter a bit more, so I could look inside (it was still leaking...!!!):



Nasty eh?  censored!

Looking inside with a lamp, the are marked below had completely rotted away.....



It was the same all down the side of the van too (towards the drivers door)  censored! censored! censored!

The leak seemed to be a completely rotten gutter, that had allowed the entire roof section to rot (water drawn by capilliary action into the interior for a long time).

My only option, other than a complete roof-off restoration (and I don't have a garage big enough) was to try and cut out the gutter and replace it as well as I can. This meant making a steel section, then fibreglassing it, so it continued the existing channel. Like this:

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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by ptate on Fri Sep 15, 2017 8:24 pm

The back of the piece was placed inside the plastic roof and the rest of the channel protruded outside:



New piece inserted like this:



So, once I welded the new piece to the existing remaining channel, it gave me a sealed section from the inside to out. I then used silicone sealant to give me a fix until I replace it with roof sealant.

The next step is to check it doesn't leak (I'll be really naffed-off it it does...!!!!!) and then weld up the quarter and lower sections, fill and paint.....
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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by -mojo- on Fri Sep 15, 2017 8:47 pm

Good work - most people would probably have given up on it! When I owned a Rapport - quite a few years back now - I confess I did not really like the look of the gutters on that either.
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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by ptate on Fri Sep 15, 2017 9:27 pm

Thanks Mojo... allthumbz

The truth is, the van has sentimental value as my Dad has just been diagnosed with the big "C" and this is likely the last vehicle we'll "restore" together; so she's going to be kept until I turn my toes up..... The roof off restoration is a future possibility...

Peace.
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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by Askit on Sat Sep 16, 2017 9:12 am

Well done that man  up! My mate, who has a fairly modern caravan, noticed that water was "disappearing" when he was washing his van. He discovered that it was running down a gutter channel and into the van via a rotted fixing at the end. No major damage and easily fixed but also easy to miss and goodness knows how much of a problem it would have caused over time.

Good luck with the ongoing restoration, whichever way you need to go with the roof  smile!

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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by ptate on Sun Sep 17, 2017 7:12 pm

Many thanks Askit  up!

Looks like the "small" corner fix, isn't large enough and I'll have to cut out a larger area. Debated whether to reshell the van for £350 (decent used one), or even transfer the innards to an affordable "good" donor T1100.... Not many left though..!!

Big job and having space limits (far too small a garage for it all), means that it may just be better to fix the van, but it ain't going to be a pretty sight until I finish.

The possible route for this means either:

1. Cutting out the steel that is rotten and an access route from the outside of the van to get under the fibreglass roof.
2. Remove internal parpahernalia (including glued pieces) to access the rot from inside - May include cutting/rewelding structural pieces afterwards.
3. Cut the fibreglass roof under the side stripe, repair the steel, then rejoin the fibreglass with internal steel straps/rivets, fibreglass and then fillers/paint.

None of this bothers me, just the amount of work.

Keep you posted.

Peace  allthumbz
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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by kaspian on Sun Sep 17, 2017 9:19 pm

Hi Plate , my heart goes  out to you especially under the circumstances as I have personally restored around a dozen classic cars with my dad . Be bold now , it never does to just cut out a tiny area , cut back to good metal now and save problems later . I used to get my father to help by holding repair plates while I mig welded and watch for fire on the inside while I welded outside . Takes me back to some great memories of us working together..
     Dont lose heart , repairing rust always looks a lot worse before the satisfaction of welding in new metal to make good . Just be very careful welding around and in the vacinity of combustible van interior trim - it can go up at an alarming rate - from personal experience! 
         Are you using mig or gas ? Personally gas would frighten me in a camper van repair but each to their own.. Best thing I bought was a set of joddlers , air powered in my case but hand tools are available,  leaves a strong flush weld with very little dressing of the weld to be done All the best! Cant wait to see the finished product .. allthumbz

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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by ptate on Mon Sep 18, 2017 11:17 am

Thanks very much Kaspian........ You're right, it isn't a good time.... :(

Anyway, got inside and decided to hack out some lumps of the inner frame, so I could access the damage from there and start to rebuild it.

Here are the slots I cut:


And here is the damage seem from the inside: 




The first pic shows the rot along the back, then the second, along the side. The fibreglass was the small section I made, to see if it worked...... No chance...!!

At least I can get to the rot now and start to think of the best way to deal with it. I think some "keyhole surgeon" type welding for substance, rustkiller, then glassfibre, eventually finishing with a major dosing of waxoyl along the whole length of the internal rail.

I will access the other side and waxoyl thaqt when I'm done.

One that is complete, it's rebuilding her and the cabinets etc.

Peace. allthumbz
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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by ptate on Mon Sep 18, 2017 11:20 am

Just for clarity, the red lines show the extent of the rot:

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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by kaspian on Mon Sep 18, 2017 5:22 pm

Not an easy repair, great care needed when welding ! Any residual scabs of rust take as much off as possible then treat with a rust converter.  Over this  I have used Isopon zinc182 zinc rich primer covering all repairs with great results for the last  40 years still available today.  Always paint with a top coat to protect even inside and as you say lashings of waxoyl to finish.
    Just take your time when welding as there looks to be lots of flammable materials close to the work area. The old boy who taught me never used more than a wet rag flicked at any areas that caught light and if a real conflagration occurred he resorted to a plant spray bottle! He had all sorts of extinguishers but preferred to start welding straight after and not having to dry out vast areas soaked by my over zealous application of a water bucket! Take care and you should be ok and above all dont loose heart . It is always worse than it looks and the first repair you do will mean you have turned the corner! Having seen a Triumph Spitfire rebuilt from what was literally a bulkhead and one front inner wing anything is possible !

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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by ptate Yesterday at 2:31 pm

Not updated for a few days, but it's not stopped....!!!!!

Gone further now and cut out a piece of gutter roughly 750mm long out of the side and 300mm across the back door.

Made a card mock up of the piece required, in order to make it, then had a brainache (sorry - idea..!!!) - why not try to find a breaker T1000 or similar and cut the section out of that  scratch head

No such luck as there are none nearby and few that have decent roof sections now...... censored!

Still, not to be beaten, I thought it may be possible to get VW pieces and change them - But couldn't find T25 panels for that area - just original "round" VW vans.

Still not beaten - I studied vans on the interweb and decided to cut a huge lump out of a 1991 Transit. It's perfect, just a couple of minor changes, then it'll do nicely.

That is sat in the garage, ready to be made into a Renault body panel, then can be welded/fixed in place.

Add to the fact that I got a nice Trafic instrument cluster from one of the vans in the breakers (for a good price) and I'm chuffed.

Another benefit lay in the fact that my Dad helped (between chemo) and the scrappers had two MG BGTs, a TR7, old MK 3 Cortinas, VW T35, Bedford Campervan with all the original brochures in it, Morris Minor, Singer Gazelle, Limo, Mercs and tons of other scarcities...... We could have mooched around there for hours..... Petrolheads eh.... hugegrins hugegrins hugegrins

More to follow soon.... Peace.
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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by ptate Yesterday at 2:31 pm

Oh, thanks for all the comments Kaspian - it's appreciated  up!
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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by kaspian Yesterday at 9:00 pm

Sounds like a great scrappys! Used to spend ages going round them while working on  'projects' !
     Good idea  to use a donor van to replace/ replicate difficult to manufacture sections. As long as the repair is structurally sound you can always fill to get it cosmetically perfect. Probably your dad enjoyed it just as much while  taking his mind off other things when able to assist.  I used to lead solder all repairs with no filler used and only  once got an injury when my dad helped out by applying Bakers fluid (flux) just as I applied heat only to get a splash of molten solder directly in my eye ( less elf n safety in those days) I still shudder  at the thought of  the nurse taking what looked like a mini rasp to my eye ball to remove the solder using local anaesthetic! Them were the days!

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Re: Large damp repair - Renault Trafic Rapport

Post by boxerman Yesterday at 9:57 pm

By eck Pete! you've been a busy boy while I've been away, haven't you?

Keep up the good work mate, you're doing a brilliant job up!

Frank
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