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Old 08-15-2016, 08:06 PM   #1
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Slide out floor replacement

I have a 2005 Cherokee Lite 28A and the slide out floor needs to be replaced. When I say floor I mean the wood that holds the whole slide out up and has the walls sitting on it.

I have already taken the dinette and couch out of the slide and removed the carpet. I am down to the floor that was wet and is very weak.

For all of you already thinking we have found the leak and that is fixed. The slide out was not adjusted properly and the water was coming in when the slide out was in the stored position.

The piece of OSB that is holding the walls and essentially the whole slide out up is 12' 3" long and 23/32 thick. This is one piece of wood. Locally I cannot get a piece of plywood bigger than 4X8 and OSB 4X10. So I am looking for solutions.

My thoughts were to get 2 7/16 inch pieces and make them 12'3" long and then glue and screw another layer on top of that. I would offset the seams from one end to the other to make this stronger and not over lap the seams. I am concerned that since this is a above floor slide that this will not be strong enough for the weight of the slide plus when we use it with the dinette and the couch.

I know I am asking a lot but what are your thoughts for fixing this. I am doing the work myself and am very handy.
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Old 08-15-2016, 08:19 PM   #2
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That would work but make the top layer out of marine plywood. That way if you spring another leak it, u won't have to go through this again
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Old 08-16-2016, 10:30 AM   #3
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You can use a handheld power planner to make scarf joints on the plywood if you're careful. And by using gorilla (or other expanding) glue it'll be as strong as the original material. You need an 8:1 profile for the scarf joint.

If you know someone at a cabinet or boat making business they may cut the joint for you.

Marine plywood will be stronger because of the number of plys, but exterior grade would work if you don't want the expense of marine plywood.

Having said all that, using two sandwiched pieces of thinner plywood would work if you glue them together completely. I'd also recommend double staggering the joints by notching half the sheet back a foot or so.

Like this.

Click image for larger version

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By flipping the pieces around and over and gluing them 100% you make a very strong floor piece.
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Old 08-16-2016, 07:04 PM   #4
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Another question.

When I glue the two 7/16 inch sheets of OSB or Plywood together it will be like a sandwich to make my thickness. How much weight should I put on the top panel for them to bond together and for how long?
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Old 08-17-2016, 06:54 AM   #5
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You could screw it them together from the side that will be covered with flooring and components.
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Old 08-17-2016, 07:17 AM   #6
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Small hand held routers are inexpensive and you could use tounge in groove bit set for the end to end joints as well. A waterproof 2 part resin like Resorcinal and short screws on 6 inch spacing would hold those panels just fine.

Great reading here Glue for Wooden Boat Building

The Gorilla Polyurethane glue is not recommended for marine type plywood by this boat DIY site.
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Old 08-17-2016, 07:24 AM   #7
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I would use heavy objects like blocks, bricks, weights, bags of sand or rock, etc.. basically whatever you have that you could lay about a foot apart over the whole thing. even a few sheets of plywood or drywall would work. That's probably overkill, but you don't want any gaps or air pockets and you want a good bond.

You could even use a few 2x4's laid on top of them and then lay some weights on top of them. Then you wouldn't have to have as many weights as the 2x4's would spread out the weight.

Just my personal opinion; I would recommend using Titebond III for the adhesive. It's strong, has a great open and working time. It's also waterproof. It's also pretty inexpensive.
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Old 08-17-2016, 07:31 AM   #8
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I like the idea of using multiple sheets of thinner plywood sandwiched together to make all the seams at a different place. This would result in accentually giving you a full sheet of plywood the correct thickness and size.
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Old 08-18-2016, 05:53 AM   #9
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Looks like they have you fixed up. Glad to see you are going to use plywood. OSB (oriented strand board) doesn't have the strength as plywood.
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Old 08-18-2016, 06:36 PM   #10
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Here is another possible way of repairing without tearing the floor out. I have used it successfully to repair 3/4 plywood floor sections that were dry rotted and also wooden stringers on a boat.

You can get wood penetrating epoxy and drill holes every square inch or so that are just less than the floor thickness. You then mix the epoxy and pour it into all the holes until the wood soaks it up to saturation. In wood, the fibers soak the epoxy into the grain and when the epoxy hardens, the wood is hard as a rock and structurally strong again. This type of epoxy hardens very slowly so it absorbs fully into the wood before hardening. It will absolutely work if the epoxy fully saturates the wood.

I am not sure, however, if OSB would absorb the epoxy like dry rotted wood does. You could try it in a small section. Also, that is a pretty large area so it would take a while to do the job. You wouldn't have to do any de-construction and re-construction at all though. It would probably take 1-2 gallons for an area that large. You can get PC Rot Contender for about $125 per gallon.
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