From: "Glen A. Smith"
I've got water leaks, what else is new, right? I will be removing
the long moulding seam cover at the corners of the GMC where the roof and
sides meet, this is the source of the water leaks. Then, I want to
take the cabinets down in my '78 Royale, then the old deteriorating ceiling
panels. I am seeking information on how the cabinets are attached to
the ceiling, especially how the cabinets are attached on the window side.
I have located the screws that hold the cabinets on the cabinet door side,
but it is not clear to me how the cabinets are held up at the rear of the
cabinets, the window side. As for the ceiling, what is the best material
to use? I'd like to use something that will shed water without becoming
delaminated or deteriorate if it should get wet again. Any tips on
marking the locations of the holes that hold the cabinets in place would
be helpful. I gotta figure once the cabinets and old ceiling material
are removed and new ceiling material installed, the holes to hold the cabinets
will not be
visible and locating them will be difficult.
Glen - In the GMC built motorhomes, the cabinets are held up by two 1/4"
bolts going up into the ceiling aluminum frame and by two 1/4" bolts going
into the back of the cupboard just above the floor. The holes for the
bolts are "rivnuts" which are expanded threaded sleeves that are anchored
into the aluminum frame members and which are threaded for the 1/4" bolts.
I do not know if Coachman used the same attachments for their Royale models.
When I put another cupboard above my front couch, rather than try to get
some rivnuts I used "Expanded U Nuts" which I purchased from AutoZone.
You can see these at: http://www.auveco.com/proddetspring.htm
I held the cupboards up where I wanted them and then drilled holes where
I wanted the bolts to go. I reached up under the ceiling panels and
slid the U nuts over the flange of the frame when the holes that I drilled
were located. These have held very well for a few years now. I
have also used the U nuts in a couple of places where the rivnuts have loosened
on other cupboards.
One hint on reinstalling the cupboards is to take some long 1/4" bolts and
cut off the heads. Screw these into the side nuts and then you can slide
the cupboards over them and it will hold the cupboard in place while you
put in the top bolts. This makes it an easy one-man job.
When I redid my headliner panels I used 1/8" tempered masonite covered with
a commercial grade cloth backed vinyl wallpaper; however, this was years ago
before we had the GMCnet. Now I see that others have used 1/8" plywood
and, for a totally waterproof material, plastic sheets which have a textured
surface. These are available at about any plastic supply store and
are commonly used for areas that need a waterproof, washable surface such
as on restroom walls in commercial places.--
I went to the local Menards/Home Depot and got some 4x8 sheets of a paneling
that were specifically designated for use in mobile homes and damp locations.
At least at my store, there was a card noting the performance data and appropriate
application. It was stocked in the paneling section and comes in several pre-printed/wrapped
patterns/colors. I chose to cover this 'attractive' finish with vinyl applied
with 3M's Heavy Duty adhesive that comes in large spray cans. Zero problems
to date in a Midwestern climate. Got the vinyl in a roll from a local fabric
Just a tip, I cut the panels a little long, placed each end in place and
then forced the middle up. The tension keeps the panel snugly up against the
ceiling. Also, need a bottle jack and 2x4 to slightly raise the roof to remove
the panels over the wardrobe and bath modules.
My first foray with the ceiling, I used plain old fiberboard. I came in
the next day after a rain and found the three panels I just installed sagging
badly. Not fun. Mark Wall 76 E2
I replaced the ceiling in my GMC with a completely waterproof material that
I got from Ridout Plastics in San Diego. They have a web site http://www.ridoutplastics.com
that describes the material. It came in 4 x 8 sheets, 1/8" thick.
It comes in different colors, but I bought the white and put them up uncovered.
The material is probably available in other locations, I didn't see any evidence
that they actually make the stuff when I picked it up. My Eleganza had some
metal brackets that covered the old seams, and I spray painted them at the
same time I sprayed the front and rear caps and re-used them.
The outside material is a white PVC molded onto a thin dense foam interior,
a PVC sheet on each side of the foam. It is very rugged, and doesn't
crimp. I had to use stainless screws and trim washers at intervals to
hold them to the ceiling, but that looks OK. I also replaced all those
little pieces around each window with one piece. I also used
a 4" wide strip to cover the spaces where the ceiling meets the piece around
the windows. It took 8 sheets to cover the ceiling and the sides around the
windows. Total cost was $228.42. I traced around the old ceiling
stuff so that the new stuff fit exactly. Putting holes in the
material where they are required to mount cabinets, etc, is difficult unless
you have the old piece to use as a pattern. I did use a floor jack
and a 2 X 2 "T" to make sure the panel was up tight against the ceiling
before I screwed them on. It is completely washable, and if rain leaks does
get on them, they can be washed off, no problem. I like my new ceilings,
but it may not be good for everyone. I got in a bit of a hurry when I did
mine and I wish now that I would have run a few more wires before I put them
up. Regards, Gene 76 Eleganza Vista, CA
I have done headliners in our coach and helped on others. Before we
did our I asked the people at Buskirk's which is the best way. They
said take it out from front to back and install from back to front.
I really made sense when you try to install the back and the short piece
between the two modules. Those pieces have no room for mistakes in
line up as the an error up front will make it extremely difficult to align
the rear pieces. That's how it was explained to me and how it work
well for me in the coaches that I have done.
I used 3/16" wood paneling and then covered it with a headliner material
that I got from a supplier. What you decide to put on will be your
personal choice. You can still find the original snaketooth material
or put a hard plastic type material, but several people that I have talked
with say it is easy to clean but found that it had no sound deadening qualities.
You can see our interior at: