door seals

R

rogtwo@aol.com

Guest
Rob,

While I have no experience, I think you are exactly right. A single door
seal (of the correct thickness) should be just as good as two seals.

As you obviously know, the two seals are NOT redundant. That is, the two
seals seal against each other and are not like piston rings (for example)
where one ring catches what leaks by the first. There's no reason to believe
that the seal on the door will seal better against a second seal than it will
against a smooth painted surface (again, assuming the door seal is thick
enough).

Secondly, I don't think the seal on the body is a safety improvement. That
is, the seal on the body is much thinner than the one on the door. If the
seal on the door were to get ripped off, the seal on the body would NOT fill
the gap. With or without the seal on the body, you would have a large leak.


But, since you bring up door seals, I will mention what I'm going to try.
Since the seals on my door are old and somewhat compressed, I don't think I
can get away without the seals on the body. Since my body seals are getting
a bit ragged, I decided to replace them. I considered the ones available
from the usual sources, but decided to be a cheep-skate (it's in my blood).
What I found is that Frost King makes what they call "X-Treme Rubber
WeatherSeal" - "Ribbed Profile". It comes on a 8 1/2 foot roll and is 3/4
inch wide and 1/8 inch thick. However, it is designed to be torn in half
lengthwise into two 3/8 inch wide strips, thus it will do both doors for
about $6. It is self-stick and appears to be made of a good quality
closed-cell foam rubber. The box claims, among other things, "Will not
harden, crack or freeze". I got the gray color (part number V23G) but it is
also available in white (V23W) and brown (V23B). I will report here in maybe
6 months on how it is working.

So, am I concerned about experimenting with such a seal? Not at all -- If
this seal should come off while I'm swimming, I don't expect any big
problems. Thanks to the other thicker seal on the door, the leak shouldn't
be too large -- not more than the bulge pump can handle. Also, since our
lakes here tend to be long and skinny, I won't ever be more than about 1 mile
from shore. This distance can be covered in about 10 minutes if the engine
is running, and 1 hour if I have to paddle the car to shore. Thus, I figure
to have a problem, I have to have all three of the following happen at the
same time:

1) The door seal failing without me noticing (it's very unlikely the seal
will slip out of place while I'm out on the water with the door is closed
tightly)

2) The engine quitting, preventing me from getting to shore quickly

3) The bulge pump failing, allowing the car to flood before I can paddle it
to shore.

If I should be this unlucky, well that's why I carry lifejackets, flares, and
insurance on the car.

This is just my reasoning, I understand that others see it differently.

Roger St. John
White '63
Seattle


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
 
R

Robert

Guest
Does anyone have any experience with removing the body seals and just using
the door seal to seal things?

It looks like a slightly thicker door seal would allow one to not use the
seals on the jamb. Any thoughts?

Rob Vondracek


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
 
A

a_colo_native

Guest
> Does anyone have any experience with removing the body seals and
just using the door seal to seal things?
>
> It looks like a slightly thicker door seal would allow one to not
use the seals on the jamb. Any thoughts?

Rob,

With something as important as the door seals, why are you
considering that option?
The second seal is what will help insure no leaks. Even a thicker
gasket against metal will certainly leak, especially if there is a
defect of any kind. Having 2 gaskets also helps seal small damaged
areas by being compressed between to pieces of rubber (essentially
filling in the damaged area). Please reconsider!

John
 
L

Larry & Nancy Solheim

Guest
Reference body at door seals:

For the past 10 years, on both Amphi & MetalBeast, I
have used 1/8t x 1/2w" strips of sheet gum rubber on
the body at the door openings. Any rubber supply can
cut these; they are smooth-edged, straight & about
$5.00ea for a 96" long strip. The down-side, if any,
is that gum rubber is not the easiest to adhere, as it
is quite smooth and needs to be "roughed up" with sand
paper on the inner surface to provide a good adhesion
surface. The 1/2" thickness fits nicely in the door
opening sheetmetal "groove".

The same material can also be glued behind the door
seal, if needed, as a shim to provide more door seal
contact. Typically the lower center of the door may
be bowed out a bit leaving lesser seal
contact/compression at this area.

Lay a dollar bill at various spots in the door opening
and then close the door. Pull on the end remaining
outside the vehicle. It should not slip, or slip only
with great friction. Do the same test again with the
water-latch engaged to see the final seal compression.
I've adjusted mine to tight w/o the water-latch which
insures a leak-free doors.

--LarryS


--- rogtwo@aol.com wrote:
> Rob,
>
> While I have no experience, I think you are exactly
> right. A single door
> seal (of the correct thickness) should be just as
> good as two seals.
>
> As you obviously know, the two seals are NOT
> redundant. That is, the two
> seals seal against each other and are not like
> piston rings (for example)
> where one ring catches what leaks by the first.
> There's no reason to believe
> that the seal on the door will seal better against a
> second seal than it will
> against a smooth painted surface (again, assuming
> the door seal is thick
> enough).
>
> Secondly, I don't think the seal on the body is a
> safety improvement. That
> is, the seal on the body is much thinner than the
> one on the door. If the
> seal on the door were to get ripped off, the seal on
> the body would NOT fill
> the gap. With or without the seal on the body, you
> would have a large leak.
>
>
> But, since you bring up door seals, I will mention
> what I'm going to try.
> Since the seals on my door are old and somewhat
> compressed, I don't think I
> can get away without the seals on the body. Since
> my body seals are getting
> a bit ragged, I decided to replace them. I
> considered the ones available
> from the usual sources, but decided to be a
> cheep-skate (it's in my blood).
> What I found is that Frost King makes what they call
> "X-Treme Rubber
> WeatherSeal" - "Ribbed Profile". It comes on a 8
> 1/2 foot roll and is 3/4
> inch wide and 1/8 inch thick. However, it is
> designed to be torn in half
> lengthwise into two 3/8 inch wide strips, thus it
> will do both doors for
> about $6. It is self-stick and appears to be made
> of a good quality
> closed-cell foam rubber. The box claims, among
> other things, "Will not
> harden, crack or freeze". I got the gray color
> (part number V23G) but it is
> also available in white (V23W) and brown (V23B). I
> will report here in maybe
> 6 months on how it is working.
>
> So, am I concerned about experimenting with such a
> seal? Not at all -- If
> this seal should come off while I'm swimming, I
> don't expect any big
> problems. Thanks to the other thicker seal on the
> door, the leak shouldn't
> be too large -- not more than the bulge pump can
> handle. Also, since our
> lakes here tend to be long and skinny, I won't ever
> be more than about 1 mile
> from shore. This distance can be covered in about
> 10 minutes if the engine
> is running, and 1 hour if I have to paddle the car
> to shore. Thus, I figure
> to have a problem, I have to have all three of the
> following happen at the
> same time:
>
> 1) The door seal failing without me noticing (it's
> very unlikely the seal
> will slip out of place while I'm out on the water
> with the door is closed
> tightly)
>
> 2) The engine quitting, preventing me from getting
> to shore quickly
>
> 3) The bulge pump failing, allowing the car to flood
> before I can paddle it
> to shore.
>
> If I should be this unlucky, well that's why I carry
> lifejackets, flares, and
> insurance on the car.
>
> This is just my reasoning, I understand that others
> see it differently.
>
> Roger St. John
> White '63
> Seattle
>
>
> [Non-text portions of this message have been
> removed]
>
>


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R

rogtwo@aol.com

Guest
Re: Re: door seals

"At that point we were bilge pumpless and with so little freeboard that if a
duck had
landed within 20 feet the wake would have swamped us."

Obviously those door seals weren't thick enough to fill the gap! :) :) :)

Seriously though, while the door seals may have been leaking, it sounds like
poor judgment was the real problem. When I took my car for it's first swim,
I drove it in to the water, turned around, and drove back out, for a total
trip length of maybe 2 minutes. I then checked the water level in the bulge.
Obviously, if the leaking you experienced was due to the single door seal,
the owner didn't test his car for water-tightness properly before going out
for a longer swim on a "moonless night". Also, why were you "bilge
pumpless"? While it's possible a well maintained pump could have broken just
as you needed it, my guess is that it was likely poor maintenance, a week
battery, or a dirty bulge (plugging the pump) that caused it to quit.

Normal engineering practice is to have a seal seal against a smooth hard
surface, not another seal. For example, the door seals on commercial jets --
I think these single seals have proved to be quite reliable. But, as I tried
to stress in my previous message, it requires the seal to be thick enough to
close the whole gap. It's quite possible that the standard Amphicar door
seal aren't thick enough to do this.

Finally, are you sure the problem was the seal, not the adjustment of the
door? On my first two swims, the drivers door was leaking a lot (i.e., you
could see the water pouring in). Then I discovered that the secondary door
latches weren't engaging properly -- they were actually closing on the wrong
side of their latch plates. That is, when the handle was lifted, the latch
would go into the rubber on the outboard side of the plate. Once I corrected
this, the leakage was down tremendously.

I guess (based on my experience with VW's of the same ere) I just don't think
German engineers are any smarter than American engineers.

Roger St. John




[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
 
B

Bill Connelly

Guest
Re: Re: door seals

> Does anyone have any experience with removing the body seals and
just using the door seal to seal things?
>
> It looks like a slightly thicker door seal would allow one to not
use the seals on the jamb. Any thoughts?


I was once in an Amphi that had no door-at-body seals, just the ones one the
door. I suppose it floated pretty well considering, that is until the rear
passengers asked the new owner of the vehicle if was "normal" that the water
should be lapping around their ankles like that. No, that Amphi didn't
sink..."much"...that moonless night on Lake Sacandaga, only dunking the
whole engine compartment like an old fashioned donut. Luckily a submerged
tree stump we'd run up on in a final bid for dry land held up the bow until
someone threw us a dog chain to haul the soggy hulk to shore. At that point
we were bilge pumpless and with so little freeboard that if a duck had
landed within 20 feet the wake would have swamped us. But the single seal
on the door seemed fine once several hundred gallons of water had poured
out!

~Bilgey~
 
M

Michael Echemann

Guest
Re: Re: door seals

Bill is correct. Why try this anyway, the seals work and are cheap. Trust that
German engineering!

A mile away from shore would feel pretty far out if one was to develop a leak
which was more then minimal but less than major. Also I've never tried it but I
don't think rowing an Amphicar one mile in an hour is even close to realistic
unless you have the Harvard rowing team in the back seat.

Mike
----- Original Message -----
From: Bill Connelly
To: amphicar-lovers@yahoogroups.com
Sent: Tuesday, January 28, 2003 8:14 PM
Subject: Re: [amphicar-lovers] Re: door seals


> Does anyone have any experience with removing the body seals and
just using the door seal to seal things?
>
> It looks like a slightly thicker door seal would allow one to not
use the seals on the jamb. Any thoughts?


I was once in an Amphi that had no door-at-body seals, just the ones one the
door. I suppose it floated pretty well considering, that is until the rear
passengers asked the new owner of the vehicle if was "normal" that the water
should be lapping around their ankles like that. No, that Amphi didn't
sink..."much"...that moonless night on Lake Sacandaga, only dunking the
whole engine compartment like an old fashioned donut. Luckily a submerged
tree stump we'd run up on in a final bid for dry land held up the bow until
someone threw us a dog chain to haul the soggy hulk to shore. At that point
we were bilge pumpless and with so little freeboard that if a duck had
landed within 20 feet the wake would have swamped us. But the single seal
on the door seemed fine once several hundred gallons of water had poured
out!

~Bilgey~


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[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
 
G

Gary Grieshaber

Guest
Re: Re: door seals

MAKE SURE YOU'RE INSURANCE POLICY IS UP TO DATE AND YOU HAVE A REAL
LOVE OF SWIMMING!! FROM PERSONAL EXPERIENCE, YOU WILL ABSOLUTELY NEED
BOTH!!
Gary (yes I sank one) Grieshaber

> "At that point we were bilge pumpless and with so little freeboard
that if a
> duck had
> landed within 20 feet the wake would have swamped us."
>
> Obviously those door seals weren't thick enough to fill the
gap! :) :) :)
>
> Seriously though, while the door seals may have been leaking, it
sounds like
> poor judgment was the real problem. When I took my car for it's
first swim,
> I drove it in to the water, turned around, and drove back out, for a
total
> trip length of maybe 2 minutes. I then checked the water level in
the bulge.
> Obviously, if the leaking you experienced was due to the single door
seal,
> the owner didn't test his car for water-tightness properly before
going out
> for a longer swim on a "moonless night". Also, why were you "bilge
> pumpless"? While it's possible a well maintained pump could have
broken just
> as you needed it, my guess is that it was likely poor maintenance, a
week
> battery, or a dirty bulge (plugging the pump) that caused it to quit.
>
> Normal engineering practice is to have a seal seal against a smooth
hard
> surface, not another seal. For example, the door seals on commercial
jets --
> I think these single seals have proved to be quite reliable. But, as
I tried
> to stress in my previous message, it requires the seal to be thick
enough to
> close the whole gap. It's quite possible that the standard Amphicar
door
> seal aren't thick enough to do this.
>
> Finally, are you sure the problem was the seal, not the adjustment of
the
> door? On my first two swims, the drivers door was leaking a lot
(i.e., you
> could see the water pouring in). Then I discovered that the
secondary door
> latches weren't engaging properly -- they were actually closing on
the wrong
> side of their latch plates. That is, when the handle was lifted, the
latch
> would go into the rubber on the outboard side of the plate. Once I
corrected
> this, the leakage was down tremendously.
>
> I guess (based on my experience with VW's of the same ere) I just
don't think
> German engineers are any smarter than American engineers.
>
> Roger St. John
>
>
>
>
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
>
>
> THE AMPHICAR-LOVERS LIST
> ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
> Before posting requests for information, please check the List
> Archives:
> http://www.escribe.com/automotive/amphicar/search.html
> For more information about this List and other available services
> visit:
> http://groups.yahoo.com/group/amphicar-lovers/
> To UNsubscribe from this List, just send a blank email to:
> amphicar-lovers-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
> Any other issues may be addressed to the List owner (Mike Israel) at:
> amphicar770@yahoo.com
>
>
> Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
>
>
>

--
NeoMail - Webmail that doesn't suck... as much.
http://neomail.sourceforge.net
 
C

chasgould@aol.com

Guest
When I got my first Amphicar, I knew little about door seals, and the last
owner could not find accurate replacements. So he had installed a
refrigerator type seal on the body, which looked pretty good. He even told me
that the doors had new seals, and I didn't know any better. Well, when my
wife and I took our maiden voyage, I learned a lot about door seals, and I
have the video to prove it!
First of all, we took several really short loops to get confidence and be
sure it would float. Although the doors were leaking extensively, we did not
notice this because most of the water entry was going down the door sill
holes to the hull beneath the floorboard. If this were to happen now, I would
sense the imbalance, and probably hear the swishing of water, but I was
mesmerized with the experience, and did not notice, even with a paranoid
awareness of potential problems.
Well, on the fourth trip, I tried to do a left turn, and the car listed to
one side. At about the same time, my wife Nancy (who was 8 months pregnant at
the time) yelled out that the water had just started to come above the
floorboards, and was now up to her ankles with the turn sloshing it all to
her side. We yelled to friends to toss us a rope and limped to shore where
the wheels could get a purchase on the lake bottom. We pumped her out before
dragging her out of the water and everything was fine.
In retrospect, I probably did not have too much water (the engine never
stalled), but it was sure scary, and it was not long before we would have
lost all power. As it is, you start having that sinking feeling that if this
thing starts to go down, you won't be able to swim and hold it up!!!!@
The funniest part was that before we went in, we procrastinated at the ramp
for a long time while we checked everything and gained confidence. During
that time, a bunch of cottage owners gathered on their docks to watch. Most
of them had no idea that this car was amphibious, and they really thought
that some idiot was driving a regular car into the water. So, when I yelled
that we were sinking and to throw us a rope, the most common reaction was
"Well, what the hell did you expect, you idiot? You drive a car into the
water, and of course you are going to sink!"
That also reminds me of the other time that three ladies saw me drive out of
the lake, and one commented that she had lived there for several years, and
never realized that the lake was that shallow. She then asked if I thought
that her Cadillac could drive across the bottom of the lake like I did in the
Amphicar. I responded "Of course she could do it in her Cadillac, but she
should be sure that she had good snow tires!"
Chas


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
 
J

John Friese

Guest
John Bevins is right, the two seals do compensate for damage to one
side or the other. Also, one seal rubbing on the paint of the body
would certainly wear the paint away after awhile.
I've tried all the normally available seals that are supplied in the
Amphicar world and found that there are many aspects to this seal that
have to be right to have a long lasting, water proof door. The latest
seal that Hugh sells does everything right, will hold up longer than
any other seal I found and it's self sticking too. I can't belive you
guys would fool around with such an important and relatively
inexpensive part. Cheap is one thing, this is just foolish.

John Friese


--- In amphicar-lovers@yahoogroups.com, "Robert" <rjv@d...> wrote:
> Does anyone have any experience with removing the body seals and
just using
> the door seal to seal things?
>
> It looks like a slightly thicker door seal would allow one to not
use the
> seals on the jamb. Any thoughts?
>
> Rob Vondracek
>
>
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
 
C

cptcrnch56@aol.com

Guest
Re: Re: Door Seals

It's amazing how much water the amphi will hold while staying afloat. Had an
amazing experience off the beach in Plymouth, Mass. back in 1972. A breaker
came thru the windshield and turned it into a limp but sharp dishrag in our
laps. Water was 6" above the floorboards, my wife's purse was floating and
being Salt Water, the cooling fan blew this water into the distributor and
coil stalling the engine. I had to jump overboard and literally pull the
Amphi into shore. (When my feet could touch bottom.)

We needed a new windshield. So, I called my twin brother in CT
and he located a used one in Lakehurst, NJ at a Pontiac/Amphicar Dealer. He
wanted $300.00 up front/ you take it out, you own it deal.

Well, he flew to NJ, Rented a car, removed the w/s in one piece, took it to a
packaging company, had it crated, purchased a ticket for it on the plane and
both flew to Warwick/Green airport by 9:45 PM. We had the w/s installed by
10:45 PM and we were on our way back to CT still picking the bugs out of our
teeth from the ride from Plymouth, MA, to RI. w/o a windshield.

This had to be the most expensive windshield I've ever replaced.

Lesson: The Amphi will float with 6" of water over the floorboard if you
don't overload either side.

Frank

PS, Backing off an island after a thunder storm with all the windows fogged
over and opening the door to see where you are going, will definitely fill
the bilge with H2O in a hurry.

Frank- only 3 Amphi's but one has been Yellow since 1968,


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
 
R

rogtwo@aol.com

Guest
Re: Re: Door Seals

Great story Frank. I really like the PS.


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
 
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