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Old 22 March 2007, 15:17   #1
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How are aluminum panels made?

Hi, Does anyone know how are the aluminum floor panels made?

I think they are strips of hollow square/box aluminum tube cut to the width of the floor, arranged side by side with a fixed U channel on each side to hold the sections together making one panel,,,then the side battens to hold one panel to the other....

Anyone has an exploded view or cut out of the fabrication method???

Has anyone made their own aluminum floor panels?

thanks!!!
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Old 22 March 2007, 17:24   #2
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Are you talking about SIB floors?

My Achilles flooring pieces were 2 sheets of aluminum, probably around 1/8" thick, sandwiching a piece of plywood. The edges were extruded shapes, a sort of off-center U on the sides, and a tongue and groove thing on the front and back edges. The molding pieces were glued on, I think (no rivets or screws or welding, that I can recall.)

The stiffener pieces sat in some riveted-on channels at the outside, right under the tubes.

A friend fabbed a floor for a 16' Bombard SIB out of a single piece of sheet aluminum that bolted to the keel pieces. He retained the original wood front pieces. Much stiffer than the original ones, but a pain in the butt to re-assemble.

Hope this helps.
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Old 23 March 2007, 16:46   #3
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The main reason for the alum panels is to reduce weight in the floor sections....
Having a wood sandwich between to sheets of aluminum will be even heavier than just wood panel.

anyone?
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Old 23 March 2007, 17:31   #4
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Not if you look at strength for strength. The aluminum sandwiched makeup will be far stronger than a plywood floor of equal weight. It will also wear better, as scratches and dents and whatnot won't harm the integrity until you tear through the aluminum skin (which takes a bit of doing.)

But, hey, it's your choice.

jky
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Old 23 March 2007, 19:55   #5
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My two Zodiac floors were aluminum channels with an aluminum sheet on top and side supports. I suspect if you could find a supply of the channel stuff, you could perhaps whip something together. The trip might be in coming up with a way to lock them together. Zodiac used a U-shaped bar that locked into inverse sections on the floor. It was easy to assemble and very rigid...
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Old 26 March 2007, 03:06   #6
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DON'T weld it. Depending on the grade of Aluminium you use, you can reduce the strength by as much as 2/3 within the heat affected zone.
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