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Old 11-05-2009, 11:59 AM   #1
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beach camping and corrosion

Just moved to south texas and have been doing a lot of camping on the beach. Also I park my rv at my home which is on a waterfront lot (salt water)...
After each outing I rinse the coach well over and under.
After about 4 months I climbed under the coach and noticed a lot of surface rust/scale that was not there prior to the move.
Should I be concerned? Are my beach camping days over? Or is this simply a light layer of scale that inevitably forms around salt air?
Is there a spray coating i could apply to reduce the effect of the salt air on my bottom,,, er ah the coaches bottom.... thanks!
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Old 11-06-2009, 09:07 AM   #2
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Aluminum oxidizes and creates a layer of oxide (Al2O3) or generic ceramic. After growing a couple monolayers (a monolayer is 1 molecule thick), further oxidation is inhibited.

OTOH, Rust (Fe2O3). see- HowStuffWorks "How does rust work?"

This reaction is NOT self limiting and will continue albeit at a slower rate. Over a long period of time it might cause parts to fail or become problematic.

There may be places near you that can undercoat your rig, but since you already have allowed the basic formation, if coated it will continue to grow.

Now, you probably don't have to worry too much and you should keep visual track of the rust but I doubt you face a near term problem.

I will add this disclaimer... If some fine day you drive out of your driveway and the crankshaft breaks off, it AIN'T my fault.
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Old 11-06-2009, 09:27 AM   #3
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Dude!!! Get away from the salt spray... I used to live near the beach.. As you've found, it will eat your lunch.
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Old 11-06-2009, 01:04 PM   #4
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I would be less concerned about beach camping (since it's not long-term) and more concerned about your beach-front storage provisions. In particular, it can raise havoc on a number of critical components like brake calipers, pulleys, and other high-tolerance moving parts. You may need to find a way to protect the undercarriage of your RV while storing it on your property. On the other hand, the surface rust you are observing is aesthetically problematic but can be minimized with some annual maintenance (scrubbing, rust remover, and priming).

In any case, I would talk to other local RVers and if possible, a dealer in the area, to get some insight into the actual long-term risks associated with keeping an RV in that area. Salt is a real problem in many areas of the country. We spent a few years wintering in Florida and have been battling rust ever since. In Arizona, they don't even know what rust is.

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Old 11-06-2009, 02:40 PM   #5
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Hi capt mav,

A rust preventer makes a good covering for your undercarriage. Although not cheep, these products work wonderfully. Just paint the bare rusted metal surfaces and the rusting will stop. Rust-Oleum works but seems to be more of a short term barrier product. Their best product for your condition seems to be ‘7400 System Heavy Duty Rust Inhibitive Primers’. But they are Alkyd Enamels which form a barrier, not Polymers that chemically react with the rust.

These products seem to be more permanent, and the Loctite product was used to paint bridges over salt water.

Loctite Extend® Rust Converter (Neutralizer)

Loctite Consumer Retail Products | Product Detail

Don’t use the spray, seems to be quality control issues with it as purchased from Home Depot.

This seems to be the same product.

Permatex® Rust Treatment

http://www.permatex.com/products/Aut..._Treatment.htm

No experience with their spray so no recommendation.

The Permatex may be the better choice since it is available in larger quantities.
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Old 11-06-2009, 06:49 PM   #6
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A friend of mine used to be in the golf course mowing equipment business. One of his customers in Marathon, FL (Florida Keys) used CRC in bulk form. They poured it in a 2 gallon garden pump up sprayer and sprayed the equipment down after each daily use. This practice prevented rust on their equipment. At trade in time they pressure washed each piece and with no rust improved the trade in value. Perhaps a similar practice could help your motorhome.
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Old 11-07-2009, 07:26 AM   #7
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CRC what. They make all kinds of stuff. Something like this may be good for my beach visits. I always pressure wash the underside when I get back anyway.
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Old 11-07-2009, 09:04 AM   #8
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We believe it was this stuff:

CRC Industries Marine

but they were buying it in a bulk liquid form and not individual aerosol cans. It's been maybe 5 - 6 years ago and apparently their packaging has changed so it's not recognizable. If this is not the exact same product it looks like thisone would do the job.
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Old 11-07-2009, 11:13 AM   #9
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thanks

I think ill try the permatex
I will also be moving the rv to a better storage location away from the waterfront... thanks again for all the help...

Quote:
Originally Posted by MrTransistor View Post
Hi capt mav,

A rust preventer makes a good covering for your undercarriage. Although not cheep, these products work wonderfully. Just paint the bare rusted metal surfaces and the rusting will stop. Rust-Oleum works but seems to be more of a short term barrier product. Their best product for your condition seems to be ‘7400 System Heavy Duty Rust Inhibitive Primers’. But they are Alkyd Enamels which form a barrier, not Polymers that chemically react with the rust.

These products seem to be more permanent, and the Loctite product was used to paint bridges over salt water.

Loctite Extend® Rust Converter (Neutralizer)

Loctite Consumer Retail Products | Product Detail

Don’t use the spray, seems to be quality control issues with it as purchased from Home Depot.

This seems to be the same product.

Permatex® Rust Treatment

http://www.permatex.com/products/Aut..._Treatment.htm

No experience with their spray so no recommendation.

The Permatex may be the better choice since it is available in larger quantities.
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Old 11-10-2009, 01:29 PM   #10
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I will be storing my rig for 4 months in FL, how far do I need to get from the ocean to not be a worry about corrosion? Where I camp, I have saltwater within 100 feet, but it is a canal (in Cortez at the Holiday Cove RV Resort).
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Old 11-10-2009, 01:39 PM   #11
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How far from the ocean salt to be safe from vehicle corrsion? Depends upon which coast, primary winds, etc. I would look and ask around locally to make a determination. The local police, residents, hotels, etc in the area may provide knowledge of a safe distance. I lived several places in Fla. within walking distance (1 mile up to several) and did not observe any problems. Homes along the beach showed heavy corrosion. Canals don't seem to be a problem as much as the salt spray directly from the ocean. Look around at the stuff where you intend to park.
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