Author Topic: MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?  (Read 4930 times)

Offline Midwilshire

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MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?
« on: June 03, 2012, 06:04:46 AM »
Demolition of my MC-5 is nearly complete.  Ceiling, walls, floor, insulation, mouse nests, etc., are all removed.  We have a skeleton of a bus.  It took one week.

The two seat rails that run the length of the bus are still there, welded on both sides every 8 inches or so.  I was thinking of taking them out, but I'm getting tired and the thought of 72 welds to grind loose is not a pleasant one. 

Does anyone have an opinion on whether its worth it to grind these rails out to lay in a flat subfloor?  Or, should I just build up the rest of the floor with 1/4" plywood, furring strips over that, insulation over that, and top off with 5/8" plywood that runs over the whole thing, rails included? 
Michael & Gigi
1978 MCI-5C "Silverliner"
Full-timers in the DC area

Offline James77MCI8

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Re: MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2012, 06:20:41 AM »
I understand your pain. I just finished demoing my MCI 8. I didn't remove the floor. IMHO if ihad the floor completely out I would bite the bullet and grind out the seat rails. Takie into consideration that you will have to "fit" the sub-floor around the rails if you leave them in. That is a lot of extra cutting, plus extra material and hardware. Hope this helps!
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Online lostagain

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Re: MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?
« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2012, 06:39:55 AM »
I would take them out so you can have your floor that much lower. Every inch of head room counts.

JC
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Offline Jriddle

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Re: MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2012, 07:26:57 AM »
I think if you have floor out you should remove the rails. IMO. I used a 4" grinder and cutting wheels. I used plenty of them but was able to be more precise. I used a big chisel as a wedge and would drive it under the rail. While I was cutting the weld it would break free. I found this to work pretty good and didn't damage the metal below.
 

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Offline thomasinnv

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Re: MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?
« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2012, 08:02:21 AM »
If you have the whole floor out i would give serious thought to leveling the floor when you put in the new subfloor. Looking back I wish I had taken the time to level the floor. It slopes something like 3.5" from back to front. Everything was built square to the floor so the bus always looks like it's pointing uphill when I level her up.
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Offline jjrbus

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Re: MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?
« Reply #5 on: June 03, 2012, 08:34:15 AM »
My opinion, no it is not worth it! Use thicker plywood and route out where the rails are.

Not sure of floor structure, but maybe thin plywood in between rails, 3/4" rigid foam,  grooved if needed where rails are. Covered with plywood or hardwood flooring?  Original flooring is not 3/4" tongue and groove but 1/2 or 5/8 multi ply. 

 Getting wrapped up in details is the death of many bus conversions.

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Offline cheechako

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Re: MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?
« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2012, 10:06:37 AM »
Why not use them for the mounting of walls and cabinets fridge ect... This is what is done in the aircraft industry. They are attached per DOT specs

Offline Lin

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Re: MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?
« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2012, 10:45:24 AM »
I'm a little unclear about what the issue is.  Are you talking about only a 1/4" loss?  If so, I would not consider it an issue.
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Offline Midwilshire

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Re: MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?
« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2012, 12:32:51 PM »
I'm going to have to stop asking questions on this board, because every time I do, I find myself with more work to do.  :)

 At least this will justify getting a new grinder to replace the fabulous harbor freight model I've been playing with up to now.

Thanks for the feedback gents.

Mike
Michael & Gigi
1978 MCI-5C "Silverliner"
Full-timers in the DC area

Offline jjrbus

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Re: MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?
« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2012, 03:24:41 PM »
When you buy a new super duper deluxe executive professional grinder and drop it off the roof of the bus you will wish you had bought an HF instead ;D  BTDT  JIm
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Offline RJ

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Re: MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?
« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2012, 09:06:01 PM »
Mike -

Remember that the floor also helps keep the bus "square," since there is no frame in the traditional sense.  So you don't want to use thinner material than OEM for your floor.

JJ's suggestion about using thicker lumber and routing out the area for the existing seat rails seems like a good compromise.

JC's comment about headroom is very valid also - especially if any of the troops are over 6' tall.

FWIW & HTH. . .

 ;)
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Offline Scott & Heather

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Re: MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?
« Reply #11 on: June 04, 2012, 01:34:23 PM »
Rip em out! We did. And just so you know, my little 5 foot wife ground all the welds herself with a grinder and several cutting wheels. Do it right. You won't regret it. The rails are heavy and will pay you a little money at the scrap yard.


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Offline rwc

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Re: MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?
« Reply #12 on: June 04, 2012, 03:23:30 PM »
I took mine out and found some surface rust that needed to be addressed. I would take them out since you are already there. Rod

Offline jjrbus

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Re: MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?
« Reply #13 on: June 04, 2012, 05:08:53 PM »
Why is ripping them out "doing it right"? JIm
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Offline John316

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Re: MC-5: is it worth it to grind out the seat rails?
« Reply #14 on: June 04, 2012, 05:44:32 PM »
FWIW, we left ours in. We put insulation right over the top of the existing floor (which was in decent shape). Then we put a grid of 2x2's down then 3/4 plywood on top. Then again we had an 8in roof raise, so we had a tad more room to play with.

Enjoy.

John
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