2008RN Posted May 16, 2022 Share Posted May 16, 2022 I bought my Oli used at 10 months old (2020 hull# 648). When I got my Oli one of the small Aluminum support bars was missing in the dog house lid. One my first voyage, We lost the other one within the first 40 miles. I noticed I had a bad habit of lying down the access port cover, so I fixed up a 18g wire and hooked to the large support bar and to the back of the access port cover. Just one year as the owner on one of our 5 day outings, I got to the camp site and went to open the access port to turn on the propane; The large bar had fallen off, and was hanging by the wire. I was going to call Oliver to order 2 more small bars, but since I am out in the cold when it comes to Olivers Warranty I decided to make Aluminum Support bars. I had left over 1”x2” Aluminum rectangle left over from mud flap installation (Original rectangle material was 1”x1.5”), and I had a few small pieces of Black 5/8” thick Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMW) lying around. The large bar that I still had only a few very small areas that had the resin attach to it (marked in Red), and the area where the bars came off where real smooth. The surface of the aluminum had a fair amount of oxidation. I cut a couple pieces of aluminum with a Angle grinder cut-off wheel, and the UHMW was cut to size on a table saw. I counter sinked the UHMW with a 3/8 spade drill and drilled out for a 10-24 SS screw. I also tapped the aluminum with a 10-24 tap for attaching the UHMW. I got a little carried away when I attached the UHMW to the aluminum, I used blue lock tight and lock wash and nut on the back side. I was paranoid of the aluminum support bars falling off again, so I go a little carried away with the mating surfaces to be attached. I used a 1/16 angle grinder cut-off wheel and cross hatched the aluminum, I then drilled and tapped 1/4-20 threads into the aluminum. The 1/4-20 holes are NOT for bolts but something extra for what ever I used to adhere to the Aluminum. I also sanded the aluminum by hand with 40 grit sandpaper for metal. For the Fiberglass I sanded down the original area with the 60grit sanding pad on a angle grinder. I left one small portion of an edge for locating the bars side to side. I used a Dremel tool with a carbide bit to cross hatch the fiberglass. Finally I did a final hand sanding with 40grit sandpaper. I made a tool for locating the aluminum support bars from the edge of the of the fiberglass. I took measurement from the impressions in the fiberglass from the resin, and the one Aluminum bar that I had. I calculated the offset of the bar .640” from the edge. This measurement was including the white trim piece. I didn’t realize that the trim would just come right off. If I had to do it over again, I think I would done the measurement without the trim piece. Note the picture shows me holding it without the trim on the shell, but I did not use it that way. Note the wires in the second picture. Before I mounted the bars I made a couple of security straps. I figured that by some chance one of the bars would come off I Attached 16g wire with heavy duty eyelets to each bar. That way I will not loose any more support bar if they cam unglued. The next question was how to adhere the support bars to the fiberglass. I felt that my 2 low tech options were JB weld or Gorilla glue. I research both, and both seemed to be a reasonable option for adhering aluminum to fiberglass. I have used Gorilla glue a few times and never had any problems with it besides the bottle has a short life span in Oregons high humidity after it is opened. The JB Weld had a fractionally higher shear factor than the Gorilla glue did, and I have use JB weld in so many applications and it has never failed. I flipped a coin and JB Weld won, although it might have been a 2 headed coin. I ended up using 1 package of the Professional size JB Weld, and one of the regular size. to do the job. I used a Bondo plastic putty tool to spread the JB weld. I put a small amount on the fiberglass just enough to fill the cross hatching squeegeed across the fiberglass. Then I put a large amount on the Aluminum cross hatching. Put the Aluminum bar in placed and then clamped. Note the trim piece in place. Below is of one of the bar ends. The puddle of JB Weld on the inside of the bar is what pushed up through the 1/4-20 holes. Here are the tools I used for the JB weld. The 3M adhesive remover worked great for cleaning up the JB Weld (sometimes I can make a mess). The final Product. I secured the wires with GB 1” square adhesive back wire tie downs to keep the wires out of the way. 1 9 Early 1999 Ford F250 SD 7.3L Diesel 2020 Elite II Twin - Hull # 648 Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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