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Old 03-25-2017, 03:43 PM   #1
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Outer sidewall spider cracking

Does anyone know if spider cracks in full painted sidewalls can be fixed? I found a beautiful motorhome except for these spider cracks that are all over the outer wall surfaces. I may still consider buying IF there's an easy fix.
Thanks, Doug
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Old 03-25-2017, 07:06 PM   #2
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If you are speaking of the exterior finish then the only fix I know of is sand and repaint. My Bounder is that way in the gelcoat finish. It doesn't keep the coach from operating properly or looking good. What I did was to scrub it with Bar Keepers Friend followed by washing it with Trisodium Phosphate. Then I applied 5 plus coats of Zep High Gloss Floor Wax. You can see the cracks in the gelcoat close up but the finish shines like new. The wax has held up really well after a year and a half and 10k miles with plenty of compliments on the sparkle. I have done 2 other coaches with oxidized gelcoating and they all turned out nice. You might get the seller to lower the asking price due to the condition and then salvage the finish with the floor wax method.
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Old 03-25-2017, 08:03 PM   #3
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dpcook66

Thanks Steve. Sounds like a lot of work but this coach may be worth it for someone. Think I'll continue my search.
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Old 03-26-2017, 03:30 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dpcook66 View Post
Does anyone know if spider cracks in full painted sidewalls can be fixed? I found a beautiful motorhome except for these spider cracks that are all over the outer wall surfaces. I may still consider buying IF there's an easy fix.
Sounds like you are talking about full body paint rather than unpainted gel-coat? If so, I have seen many, many full body paint coaches with some minute spider-web type "cracks" in the surface when you get the light just right. The tiny surface cracks seem to be fairly common in my experience. Bigger cracks that could catch a fingernail would be more concern as they could indicate an actual crack in the fiberglass, like some models have experienced at slide opening corners, etc.
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Old 03-26-2017, 03:43 PM   #5
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The cracks are in the fiberglass surface itself, buffing them may work for a while but the only real cure is to replace the whole side panel. Our '02 DSDP started showing it in '04 and Newmar told me buffing it would cure the problem. Well, it didn't and by that time it was out of warranty and would cost about $18,000 per side to remove, replace and repaint. Not worth it to us. The spider web cracks were still there when we traded the rig in 2015.
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Old 03-26-2017, 09:18 PM   #6
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Winnebago had a fault in their fiberglass panels gelcoat up to 2007 or so I have been told. They changed suppliers at that time to fix the problem. I have that problem on one side of my coach which has the full body paint. I have been told it starts when the surface is exposed to direct sun and higher heat. It is a cosmetic issue and not a structural issue. You can have the areas repainted and that will cover it up for a few years. I can't see putting the money into replacing the fiberglass panels. Keeping the surface waxed helps to cover it so that it only shows the most in certain lighting conditions. I have grown used to it and you have to be fairly close to see it. I wouldn't let it be a deal breaker if you really love the coach. On the other hand, there are a lot of motorhomes on the market these days. Good luck with your search.
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Old 03-26-2017, 09:50 PM   #7
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Thanks so much for the info. I may go take a second look.
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