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Old 06-04-2015, 08:12 PM   #1
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How to remove foam insulation overspray

As I prepared to polish our 3 week old Escape 21, I noticed that the spray foam insulation option we added resulted in some overspray on the bottom edge of the fibreglass/gel coated body and also the frame and jacks. Does anyone have any tricks for removing them from the gelcoat or the painted frame or jacks? It will be much easier to clean the dirt and mud from the underside in the future if there aren’t little blobs for the dirt to adhere to. Most of their bulk can be removed by scraping with fingernails or a wooden stick, but there is sufficient foam stuck to the gel coat to make it rough. I can live with this, but thought the smoother the better and maybe someone had a solution for either the gel coat or the jacks and frame.

Also, I noticed small rectangular squares (about 1/2 X 1 inch) where the gel coat is missing at certain points on the underside of the fibreglass body. The underlying material appears to be green/yellow. Is this normal or something that needs to be covered to protect the gel coat from flaking away?

Bob K
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Old 06-04-2015, 08:26 PM   #2
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Bob, when I did some insulation with the 2 part spray (which I assume ETI uses, the gun, etc cleaned up with acetone. You might try that somewhere where it won't show in case it hurts the gel coat, but I think it should be ok.

I have those same squares - I think they have something to do with the molding process? Hopefully someone knows more precisely.
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Old 06-04-2015, 08:37 PM   #3
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A plastic scrubby won't hurt the gel coat and it's easier on your fingernails.
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Old 06-04-2015, 09:09 PM   #4
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Thanks Eric and Donna. The scraper thing I tried using a wooden stick. It removed all but a rough coating. The acetone looks appealing, but I worry what it will do to the gel coat. I'm wondering if there is something that will dissolve the foam without affecting the gel coat of the petroleum based rust paint on the jacks and frame.

It's good to know that others have the little squares of gel coat missing on the underside. I too thought it was likely part of the production process, but wasn't sure if they are normally covered with a patch.

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Old 06-05-2015, 07:19 AM   #5
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Acetone will not hurt the gelcoat at all, but does not work great on the foam, once it is set up.

You could scrape off the worst, then use progressively smaller wet sandpapers, taking it down to at least a 600 grit on the gelcoat, then polish as usual.
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Old 06-05-2015, 09:42 AM   #6
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Absolutely...once it "sets" you have to carefully scrape it off with a blade or a putty knife.

Time consuming indeed...OCD is required!
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Old 06-05-2015, 03:27 PM   #7
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Out of sight, out of mind......as far as the little green spots, these are drain hole locations, some are drilled, some not.
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Old 06-05-2015, 07:31 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
Out of sight, out of mind......as far as the little green spots, these are drain hole locations, some are drilled, some not.
Hmmm... How does that explain the ones on the inside of the wheel wells behind the tires??
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Old 06-05-2015, 08:09 PM   #9
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Hmmm... How does that explain the ones on the inside of the wheel wells behind the tires??
Our 17 had those little holes in the wheel wells. but they were covered over by some tape. I don't see them on the 21, but we had rock guard protection sprayed in the wheel wells
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Old 06-06-2015, 07:12 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
Out of sight, out of mind......as far as the little green spots, these are drain hole locations, some are drilled, some not.
I guess you are right about the foam on the bottom edge of the body. But the jacks look pretty messy when you lower them. I guess if you leave them dirty you won't notice, but I like to return them to black at the beginning of a trip. I tried acetone, brake cleaner, bug & tar remover, solvent and a whole host of other chemicals, but none really helped remove what isn't scraped away. I may have to sand down the jacks to removed the foam.

You are right about the drain holes. Some are drilled out and others are not.

Thanks,

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Old 06-06-2015, 08:13 PM   #11
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Here's a guy that removes it with a razor blade.
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Old 06-07-2015, 08:08 PM   #12
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Overspray

We picked up our trailer on the 1st. When we go home today, I used our pressure washer (with hot water) to spray off the bugs, but found that it also removed the overspray in the wheel wells, rear bumper and on the jacks.
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Old 06-09-2015, 01:26 AM   #13
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Thanks Paul. I will try the pressure washer as soon as I have time (probably in a day or two). I hope you are enjoying your new trailer as much as we are. Our neighbours all had to drop by for a look, and we were glad to oblige.

Take care,

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Old 06-09-2015, 11:06 PM   #14
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My pressure washer is powered by a 5 HP Honda engine and develops about 3500 psi. It removed the bulk of the foam overspray on the jacks and the wheel wells (the visible areas that I worked on), but the residual foam makes the surfaces a bit rough. Of course I would prefer it to be smooth so dirt is easier to clean off. Right now sponges and cloths catch on the surface, but I don't have the time or energy to do more. I didn't notice the overspray until I spent time close up cleaning and polishing the trailer, so I know it isn't a big deal. I can imagine how difficult it is for ETI to apply the spray on foam without getting at least a bit on adjacent areas. I guess I'm one of those guys who wants everything to sparkle and shine, at least with new acquisitions like our Escape. Maybe later this summer I will sand the affected jack surfaces down a bit and paint with rust paint.

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