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Old 08-30-2010, 10:49 PM   #1
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Entry Door Out of Square - (Lots of pics)

Hi Folks

I have had an entry door bind ever since I owned this camper. It would come and go and once the camper was setup the trailer would tip just right and everything worked fine. And then some times when it was not setup I could not get the door open or worse, closed. It hit so hard it felt like I was going to break the glass.

So I looked up top where it was hitting and the door frame was lower on the latch side then the hinge side. Not wanting to pull the door frame, I filed down the top the door some and used a 2 x 4 to hit the frame up trying to gain any amount of clearance. Still it only mildly helped.

I knew what I had to do to fix this and the weekend finally came where I could get to it. I pulled the entire door frame out and reset it. Now I have no issues and this thing closes like a baggage compartment. Click it is shut on one nice gentle swing. So here is the problem and fix in pictures.

If anyone else has this problem, this is the extreme fix, but it will solve the problem.

Here is the problem. Look at the top left side of the door and the gap between the outside of the door and the door frame. It is pinched tight when closed and I already filed and whittled on this.


The hinge side. Lots of space


The door latch side. No space


The bottom of the hinge side. The door is lower then the frame.


The latch side, the frame is lower then the door.


You can see it across the full with of the door. The latch side it down hill from the hinge side.


Marks left by the door hitting. See ground off paint
v



Now out with the door.

You need to deal with the rubber gasket before taking the screws out or else you cannot get the door off the hinges. Ask me how I know this…. Learned the hard way.


Gently pull back the rubber in the hinge area to not rip it.


9 screws and it is off.

I put some duct tape on the siding both left and right to mark the bottom of the door frame so I knew where it was when I took out the frame.



Then take out all the screws under the vinyl strip. And pull at the bottom and out it will come.




Here are some pics of what the frame looks like. They also used 2” wide putty tape. Did not know that made it that wide.














By the way, here is your VIN if you cannot find it anywhere else


Now to figure out the problem. Yup, the frame is not square to the floor.





OK now can I fix that much being out. The door frame length


The opening




Yes it can go up and there is room to move it around. So how much do I need? Put the frame back in as a test run shimmed. Well it is 5/16” across a 30” wide opening out of square.




Now how to cut a 2” wide, 30” long wedge from 5/16” to nothing. Well start out with clear pine and cut it to 2” x 5/16 x 30” and plane it down to a wedge





Then test fit




You can see here how much I had to lift the latch side of the frame


Now to test fit the door on the hinges before I butyl tape this thing in.

Yup the door lines up now with the latch side of the frame. See the distance from the duct tape to the bottom of the frame where it use to be.


And I have clearance up top.


So now it is time to butyl tape up the door frame and the side of the camper. I put extra in the corrugations. This uses more sealing tape but I do not want any leaks. I used 1” wide and doubled it up as Sunline used 2” wide.






Now start putting all that screws back in. You can see here the sealing tape squirts out the side that later will be trimmed. The problem corner, FIXED!!!


Even the screen door has clearance.




You will also notice my door decal goes slightly up hill. Seeing this decal like this, I believe the door was set like this from day 1. The bed room door is perfect, but this main entry door, was not so good.

Look at the blue and gold on the door and on the siding. Blue lines up but it low and Gold only a little high



And now the latch side. Blue higher and gold noticably higher.


And that is it. The door works great now, no problems and lots of room for the camper to be off level and it still work right.

Hope this helps someone in the future.

John
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Old 08-31-2010, 08:15 AM   #2
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John, Your quite the busy guy on your Sunny. A sticking door is an irritant nevertheless, and having to set up oddly is certainly no way to manage this issue. You've done it the right way.

I can't help but wonder, since this is an issue basic to the coach construction, where the quality team at Sunline was when this sort of thing was allowed to be passed without getting fixed during the build process.

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Old 08-31-2010, 12:07 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodoleBob View Post
John, Your quite the busy guy on your Sunny. A sticking door is an irritant nevertheless, and having to set up oddly is certainly no way to manage this issue. You've done it the right way.

I can't help but wonder, since this is an issue basic to the coach construction, where the quality team at Sunline was when this sort of thing was allowed to be passed without getting fixed during the build process.

Bob
Hi Bob

Thanks for the note. Actually my Sunline mod and improve habit has been on heavy withdrawal here this year. Spring time was consumed with my slide repair. And then I was only able to get in the Eternabond on the roof and the Lexan door plus this door frame correction. Part of my time consumption has been working weekends which pays for the camper habitÖand I have my sonís 1968 Ford 3000 tractor all pulled part in the shed doing an engine overhaul. Even my camping habit is down a little but too which is a real bummerÖ. However have several projects queíed up just waiting on time.

How this was missed at the factory. Donít know. If the setup of the camper was just right the door worked so this may have gone un-noticed. Unless you actually did a total clearance check of the space between the door and frame this would not show up.

Seeing from a video Sunline Fan showed us on how the factory made up the walls I suspect the stud layout some how was shifted as the root casue. They lay the walls out in the flat with the studs locations. They then trim the paneling size to match the stud opening and stand the wall up on the TT. Then the siding is put on the entire camper length and is cut in place to match the opening. The door frame just lays on the floor and you sway it left or right and screw the flange on. If they used the hinge side stud to true off of, then the door frame turned into a parallelogram. When the coach was new everything may have been stiff and there was just enough clearance to shut OK. As towing time went by what little clearance became none. Unless there is an exact QC check for door trim gap spacing, this one slipped thru.

At this point this is all speculation but I can see it happening this way. Itís all fixed now and ready to head camping for 17 days here real soon. YEH!!!!
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Old 09-02-2010, 01:38 PM   #4
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Great post, as usual, John. One again something you posted made me look at mine. have the opposite problem, the gap over the latch side is larger than the hinge side and my deadbolt has never closed. Looks like I am 1/4 inch off.
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File Type: jpg DoorL.jpg (49.9 KB, 2 views)
File Type: jpg DoorR.jpg (48.7 KB, 2 views)
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Old 09-05-2010, 09:18 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gene View Post
Great post, as usual, John. One again something you posted made me look at mine. have the opposite problem, the gap over the latch side is larger than the hinge side and my deadbolt has never closed. Looks like I am 1/4 inch off.
Gene

H'mm maybe the problem is larger then we thought.

Well, in "our" case, maybe we can go camping together and I give you some of my 5/16" too low old frame and you give me some of your 1/4" too high and we both will be about right on. LOL

Do you have a large air space up top where the door gasket will not seal the door to the frame with the frame on that side so high?
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Old 09-05-2010, 10:49 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnB View Post
....
Do you have a large air space up top where the door gasket will not seal the door to the frame with the frame on that side so high?
I should have posted a picture of the top, maybe tomorrow. There is a space but the door seals ok and I thave never had water come in .... so far.

Quote:
Well, in "our" case, maybe we can go camping together and I give you some of my 5/16" too low old frame and you give me some of your 1/4" too high and we both will be about right on. LOL
LOL, I was thinking the same thing when I posted that.
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Old 09-16-2010, 09:19 AM   #7
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I have the same issue with my bedroom door on my 2004 Solaris SR The deadbolt is about 1/4" to low yet the door does not look that far out of square. I am guessing that the remedy is to remove & shim the door?
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Old 09-16-2010, 02:11 PM   #8
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In our case the door itself is not square.
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Old 09-16-2010, 05:13 PM   #9
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Any suggestions on how to fix my issue? I thought of simply re drilling new holes for the latch to accommodate the deadbolt
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Old 01-01-2011, 11:16 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matti View Post
I have the same issue with my bedroom door on my 2004 Solaris SR The deadbolt is about 1/4" to low yet the door does not look that far out of square. I am guessing that the remedy is to remove & shim the door?

Any suggestions on how to fix my issue? I thought of simply re drilling new holes for the latch to accommodate the deadbolt
Matt,

Gosh I humbly apologize. Some how I missed this question..... I looked up this post today for someone else and there is your question....

So 3 months or so late....

Look carefully as the space between the door and the frame with the door closed. Like this hear but all the way around and down on the bottom.





You can see on mine the frame it lower then the door corner. And up top there is no gap in the corner as the frame is too low


If the gap is equal all the way around, then the door to the frame is set parallel to each other. If that is the case then the door and frame are set correct to each other and taking the door frame out to fix the latch is going to cause other closing issues. If the gap is not even and it looks like taking the frame up or down will help fix the gap and that is the direction that will help the dead bolt then resetting the frame may help.

However if the frame is correct to the door, then your left with moving the dead bolt lock hole in the frame up or down. Depending on how much you need to move the dead bolt plate you may have to grind out some frame to enlarge the hole. If you take the dead bolt plate off and try the door and lock, if it fits in the frame hole then it may be as simple as drilling new holes for the striker dead bolt plate.

Hope this helps. If and when you get to this, let us know how you made out.

John
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Old 01-01-2011, 11:27 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tweety View Post
In our case the door itself is not square.
Pam,

If the door is out of square, well that is not a fixable short of taking the entire door apart and that is not practical (I think)... But if you set the frame to the out of square door the 2 will work with each other.

See what I posted to Matt above. I'm assuming the gap is not even all the way around. Yes/No??? That is the problem if is not even all the way around. I will not use the words "plumb" or "level" as on a TT with so much frame flex and everything else going on level is only a point space....

The need is that the door parallelogram, even if not square, is in sync with the door frame parallelogram. Then the 2 work with each other. If you are hitting when closing, (mine was so hard some times to the point I thought it would break the door glass ) then having Mr. Tweety reset the door frame to match the door should help. (I know I'm making more work for him....)

You should see the problem in the gap around the edge of the door.

Hope this helps

John
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Old 01-02-2011, 08:50 AM   #12
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John, The door had a fairly consistent gap all around it. What I wound up doing was modifying the striker latch & filling in the entire space with a high strength body filler to help support the latch as i removed 1/4" of metal from the place where the lock was hitting. I then ground out the filler to accommodate the new lock pin position. Worked like a charm & I have confidence in the repair even though it was a simple one. Had the door shown any unusual gap I would have done the "remove the door" gig. Thanks for getting back
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