Repairing "steamed Up" Double Glazing

Discussion in 'Tech/Mech General' started by funflair, Jul 6, 2015.

  1. funflair

    funflair Funster Life Member

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    Not everybody knows this, BUT some motorhomes have double glazed glass panels in the cab side windows and in some cases all of the habitation windows.

    After we bought our Niesmann+Bischoff Flair at 6 years old I realised that one of the side windows was steaming up in the summer sun (OK in the winter) 3 years later I eventually plucked up the courage to do something about the problem, I could have gone to the factory in Germany and paid well over £1000 for them to fix it or to the UK dealer and paid even more BUT as a Yorkshire man I was not up for that so would have a go myself.

    A friend in our owners club had done his without any drama so time to tackle ours, his is a newer Arto ours a 2006 Flair but the same idea "I thought".

    If you want the shortened version of events, it was not as easy as it should have been and the window went BANG, at the moment I have a perspex one in and am getting two new units made to be fitted later, I will add that the new ones are only £96 each so still well in pocket. If all had gone to plan the glass panel would have been separated, dried out and then stuck back together.

    The techy bits are described below along with pictures.

    removing the rubber trim.jpg
    Pull out the rubber trim from the inside to expose all the fixing screws.
    remove all the screws.jpg
    Remove all the fixing screws.
    remove mirror with a sahrp thump with the heel of your hand.jpg
    Remove the mirror with a sharp bump with the heel of your hand.
    ease the frame off the mastic seal.jpg
    Gently ease the frame away from the body ( the mastic should be non setting so quite easy)
    where the seal had never been fitted properley.jpg
    This is showing where the sealing tape had not been properley fitted to the top of the window at the factory.
    water marks on the foam but no wood in this construction inside or out.jpg
    You can see the water marks on the foam but no damage done in 9 years because the construction is aluminium inside and out.
    drainage channels in the foam core in case of leaks.jpg
    Drainage channels in the foam before the alloy skins are put on allow any leaks to run away and out the bottom of the panels, no wood anywhere in the wall construction.
    remove vertical glazing bar fixing screws.jpg
    Remove the crews for the vertical glazing bar for the front window panel.
    drill out all rivets for frame joints and window catch.jpg
    Drill out all the pop rivets for connecting the two frame halves and fixing the window catch.
    slide along the joint spreader plate.jpg
    Slide along the steel spreader plate to allow the frame to seperate, there will still be a small roll pin in to locate the sections together but this will knock along as well if you can find it, or the frame will come apart with it in place.

    OK this is photos so far, I have split the window frame and the sliding window comes out easy, the front fixed panel will come out easy unless it is all stuck in, our was all stuck in and eventually the glass went BANG and the sealant had to be cut out with a blade. I have replaced the glass with perspex and reassembled the frame and it is all fitted back in. I will be getting two new double glazed units made and replacing both sides.

    I will update with reassembly photos as and when I do the job but it is just a reversal of taking it all apart.

    I dont think this is a job for somebody lacking confidence or DIY skills as for example the easiest way to get the glass out if it is all stuck in would be to put a hammer through it, no turning back after that though.

    Martin
     
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  2. funflair

    funflair Funster Life Member

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    Well this should be the final photo until I get the proper glass back, to be honest you would not know it was Perspex until you see the spacers inside as its only 6mm not 12mm.
    image.jpg
     
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  3. funflair

    funflair Funster Life Member

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    OK new double glazed window now fitted, we had a bit of a glitch with one that didn't fit as somebody must have drawn around the template with a thick felt tip pen and got the wrong side of the line:mad:, anyway it won't happen again as the guys at CNglass now have their own toughening plant up and running and dont need bto outsource anymore.

    I got to speak with the MD who just happens to be a Funster and they remade two panels no arguments, I have only fitted the one so far but the fit was perfect. The only difference between the replacement and the original is firstly that the glass is 4mm not 3mm and the spacers are consequently 4mm not 6mm in reality this makes no difference, the second difference is that the original glass is printed around the edges with a black pattern so it looks different to the sliding window but more importantly it allows you to see inside the frame from the outside of the van and you can see some light coloured spacers inside the frame, CN glass did say that that if we had a little more time they could actually get the glass screen printed which would then be absolutely perfect, to be honest most people would be happy as it is but I am a fussy b----r.

    The cost to have a new window fitted to a Niesmann+Bischoff at the factory is over £1000 I believe and a lot more if you use the UK dealer, I would imagine that Concorde etc would be around the same price so I am happy to have done this at around 10% of the factory cost.

    The company that did the work for me are CN glass at Banbury near Oxford and to be fair sizing glitch aside they were a pleasure to do business with.

    photo 1.JPG
    I know it looks just the same as the perspex one but it certainly won't steam up the same.


    photo 2.JPG

    This is looking from the outside and you can see the light coloured spacer inside the vertical glazing bar, you would not see this with printing around the glass.



    Martin
     
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